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Pens Points: Hello Old Friend

Pens take on Fleury in first meeting with expansion Golden Knights. Youth movement at goalie helping Pens in big way. Former Pens propelling Golden Knights early success. “Star Wars” takes over the NHL. Pest Dubinsky to miss meetings with Penguins. Human sized penguins were a real thing new findings show.

NHL: Stanley Cup Final-Pittsburgh Penguins at Nashville Predators Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports

We knew this day was coming and now it’s finally here. For the first time ever, Marc-Andre Fleury will be suiting up for a Penguins game but he will not be wearing the famous skating penguin like Sidney Crosby or Evgeni Malkin will be. Instead he’ll be in the opposing crease when the Penguins face-off against the Vegas Golden Knights for the first time in franchise history this evening. We’re out west now so that means late game times. Puck drop is scheduled for 10:00 PM and will be broadcast on AT&T Sports Network.

Here now, your daily dose of Pens Points for this wintry morning...

As the schedule ticks towards the halfway point of the season, it is clear the Penguins have some issues that still need to be ironed out. There is no one solution to all the Pens’ problems but there are some fixes that could get them back on track. [ESPN]

Much has been made of the Penguins’ youth movement that helped propel them to consecutive Stanley Cup championships. Now that youth movement is trickling down to the crease and paying off in big ways for the franchise when they need it most. [The Boston Herald]

Tonight marks the first meeting between the Penguins and the expansion Vegas Golden Knights. In goal for the Knights will be Marc-Andre Fleury and he’s hoping to do his part to beat his former team. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

Another former Penguin will also be suiting up for the Golden Knights during this evening’s contest. Defenseman Deryk Engelland was selected from the Flames during the expansion draft and is thriving with his new team. [Penguins]

In fact, there will be four total former Penguins in uniform tonight for the Golden Knights. In addition to Fleury and Engelland, David Perron and James Neal will also be on the ice taking on their former team. The early success of the Golden Knights franchise can be directly tied to these former Penguins. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

If you are in town over the holidays and want to catch some college hockey action then head down to PPG Paints Arena on December 29th or 30th for the Three Rivers Classic. Tickets are now on sale. [Penguins]

Unless you live under a rock you have probably seen advertisements for the new “Star Wars” movie set to come out this week. You’re probably also aware how infectious “Star Wars” fever can be and several NHL teams, including the Penguins, have caught it. [ESPN]

After suffering a fractured orbital bone earlier this week, Columbus Blue Jackets forward Brandon Dubinsky will miss his team’s two meetings with the Penguins later this month. [Trib Live]

To celebrate a decade of outdoor hockey, the NHL is releasing a special documentary on the first Winter Classic that was contested in Buffalo between the Penguins and Sabres on January 1st, 2008 in a driving snow storm. [Buffalo News]

A new fossil discovered in New Zealand revealed that thousands of years ago a breed of penguin the size of Sidney Crosby roamed the Earth. [CBC]

News and notes from around the NHL...

First round of results for NHL All-Star voting have been released and your typical names are filling out the top spots. Connor McDavid is the overall vote leader while Alex Ovechkin holds a slight lead over Sidney Crosby in the Metropolitan Division. [Sportsnet]

Players have all sorts of ways of wasting time while on the road, but for Joe Thornton it’s a classic board game that helps him pass the time. [Sports Illustrated]