Stars 3, Penguins 0
Some news and notes, nuggets and quotes from the Penguins’ 3-0 loss to Dallas at American Airlines Arena Saturday night:
*** This defeat might not have been quite as humbling as the Penguins’ 5-1 loss to Florida at home Monday night, but it wasn’t far from it, either. The Penguins were outplayed in every facet of the game, as the Stars played with considerably more urgency then the visitors. “They were flying,” Penguins winger Craig Adams said, “like we knew they would be.”
*** The Penguins outhit the Stars, 36-26, in large part because of 13 hits credited to left winger Tanner Glass. James Neal was the only other Penguin to record as many as six.
*** The Penguins entered the game with the top-rated power play and penalty-kill in the league, but absorbed a resounding defeat in the special-teams battle. Dallas scored on two of its three tries with the extra man and snuffed all four Penguins power plays. “We’re minus-2 in the special-teams battle,” Penguins coach Dan Bylsma sid. “And that was a big part of the story.”
*** Andrew Ebbett rejoined the Penguins’ lineup after sitting out 21 games because of a broken ankle. He primarily centered the fourth line, with Glass and Adams on his wings.
*** The loss was goalie Marc-Andre Fleury’s first in seven career decisions against the Stars.
*** The Penguins gave up the first goal for the fourth time in the past five games.
*** Sidney Crosby still hasn’t scored a goal in Dallas, one of five NHL cities in which he has failed to find the net during his career.
*** The Penguins had won seven of their previous eight games against Dallas, as well as three of the previous four in Dallas.
*** Glass, on the Penguins turning in sub-par performances in two of their past four games: “I think it’s work ethic right now. I think it’s shortcuts, and thinking that it’s going to come easy. It’s a good league with good teams, and you can’t take shortcuts. … They outworked us. A lot of times, they were first on the pucks and more physical in the puck battles. When they’re first and physical, it makes it tough to recover pucks.”
*** Stars goalie Kari Lehtonen stopped 24 shots to record his second shutout in the past three games.
*** Former Penguins defenseman Sergei Gonchar gave Dallas the only goal it needed when he scored during a power play at 15:02 of the opening period. It was just his second goal in 46 games this season.
*** Another ex-Penguins defenseman, Alex Goligoski, failed to score a goal for the 39th game in a row, but did pick up an assist on the second Stars power-play goal.
*** The Penguins remain comfortably ahead of second-place Boston in the Eastern Conference playoff race and every other club in the Metropolitan Division, but Crosby said they shouldn’t have to look to the standings for incentive. “When you’re playing good hockey teams and teams that want to win, that’s all the motivation you need. We expect a lot of one another and we need to find a way to be much better.”