Even with the NHL’s top player sitting out and another key member of the team sidelined by injury, the Pittsburgh Penguins still had enough to skate past the New York Islanders 1-0 Tuesday night in Pittsburgh.
With superstars Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin sidelined, goalie Marc-Andre Fleury stepped up with 29 saves to lead the Pens to the win against a struggling Islanders squad.
The win was Pittsburgh’s fifth win in its past six games — all without Crosby — and second in three games with both Crosby and Malkin out due to injury.
“I don’t think we’ve really changed much, to be honest,” defenseman Brooks Orpik told the Associated Press afterwards. “Some guys are maybe getting more ice time and playing different roles like power play and whatnot, but we’re playing the exact same way.
“We’re not playing any more defensive, but I think guys are just maybe buckled down a little more and their focus is a little better.”
Craig Adams got the lone strike with his third goal of the season at 8:35 of the third period off a rebound of an Arron Asham shot for the Penguins, who have won 10 consecutive home contests against Islanders. New York was coming off of a weekend home-and-home split with the Buffalo Sabres.
Adams’ shot got by New York goalie Kevin Poulin to the stick side on the left side of the net.
“It just kind was bouncing everywhere and I was screened and it hit someone,” Poulin told the AP. “Sometimes it’s hard to stop those.”
The Islanders, who haven’t won a game in Pittsburgh in over three years, dropped to 1-3 in a stretch of five games in seven days that was to conclude at home against Carolina on Wednesday.
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Written by Dave Thomas