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Pens Points: An Emotional Return Home

Penguins return home in hopes of helping a grieving city heal. Catch up on the latest news surrounding the team in today’s edition of Pens Points.

NHL: Pittsburgh Penguins at Calgary Flames Candice Ward-USA TODAY Sports

Coming home from a long road trip is normally a joyous occasion for a team and its fans but when the Penguins return to PPG Paints Arena this evening against the Islanders, they will hoping to help a grieving city heal following the tragedy at Tree of Life Synagogue on Saturday.

During the course of tonight’s game, the Penguins will be holding a collection for the victims of Saturday’s shooting. To do our part in helping those affected begin to heal, we at Pensburgh are holding a pledge drive to collect money for the victims. All of of the information for our collection, including how to participate and donate if you choose, can be found right HERE.

Puck drop is scheduled for 7:00 p.m. ET and will be broadcast on AT&T Sports Network.

Catch up on the latest news with today’s Pens Points...

This evening’s game against the Islanders will be carrying the emotional weight of the entire city, which is still grieving from Saturday’s horrific attack. To aid in the healing process, the Penguins franchise has rallied around the city in hopes to ease the pain in anyway they can. [Trib Live]

While the city continues to grieve and search for healing, the Penguins players are trying to come to grips with what can only be described as an unspeakable tragedy. While being more than 2,000 miles away from home when the shooting occurred, the team could only watch in horror as news rolled in. [Penguins]

Tonight’s tilt was supposed to be the team’s annual Halloween game, but those plans were quickly scrapped after Saturday’s events. Instead, the Penguins hosted a blood drive on Monday and will be holding a collection during tonight’s contest to help support the victims and their families. [Pensburgh]

In addition to the blood drive and collection, the Pittsburgh Penguins Foundation made two donations to help support the victims. Two $25,000 donations were made to the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh and the City of Pittsburgh Department of Public Safety. The latter donation will go towards support for the four Pittsburgh police officers injured during the shooting. [Penguins]

After returning to Pittsburgh from a rather successful four game road trip, the Penguins were back on the ice for practice on Monday, but not everyone stayed the whole time. Defenseman Kris Letang left practice early with what was described as a nagging injury. Letang’s availability for tonight’s game is still undetermined. [Trib Live]

Four wins in four attempts during this long Canadian road trip gave the Penguins plenty to be happy about coming home. On top of collecting all of the available points, there were many areas on the ice where the Penguins excelled out that should give the team even more confidence moving forward. [Pensburgh]

Long road trips can be hard on everyone from the players all the way down to the gameday staff. Luckily for the Penguins, they have equipment manager Dana Heinze on their side to make these cross continent trips run as smoothly as possible. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

If the games during this Western Canada swing were played past your bedtime then you missed a breakout performance from Sidney Crosby. The captain scored his first goal of the season against the Oilers, which then opened the floodgates the rest of the trip. As a result, Crosby was named the NHL’s First Star of the Week for his effort. [Penguins]

While Crosby was breaking out of his slump in a big way, fellow superstar Evgeni Malkin was also racking up the points on the long trip across Canada. With 18 points on the season, Malkin suddenly sits only three points off the league lead courtesy a team-high nine points on the road trip. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

Another big name making a break out during the long road trip was goaltender Matt Murray. A rough start to the season, combined with missing time with a concussion, had Murray’s detractors out in full force. Coming off three strong performances, the questions surrounding Murray have subsided a bit. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

Pittsburgh is home to three major sports franchises, and two of them have been among the most successful in their respective sports over the past decade. Success on the field/ice puts people in the seats, which generates money for the team and city, but just how much of an effect do the sports teams in Pittsburgh have on the overall economy? [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

News and notes from around the NHL...

File this one under things that could only happen in the year 2018: the NHL announced a new sports betting sponsorship with MGM Resorts on Monday. Commissioner Gary Bettman, who was staunchly against sports gambling at one time, acknowledged the recent Supreme Court decision regarding sports gambling pushed this deal towards reality. [ESPN]

Auston Matthews got off to a red hot start to the season but now he will have sit back and wait to see if he can catch fire again. On Monday, the Maple Leafs announced that Matthews will be sidelined at least four weeks with a shoulder injury. [CBC]

A good team often features a lot of talent but that talent is not always enough to get the job done alone. To be a great team, you also need a little bit of puck luck to go your way over the course of a season and into the playoffs. [TSN]