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Penguins 4, Wild 3

By Dave Molinari 6 years ago

A quick look at the Penguins’ 4-3 victory against Minnesota at Consol Energy Center Tuesday night:

*** Evgeni Malkin, who spoke of his teammates’ frustration with their play of late after a 4-0 loss in New Jersey Saturday, responded to the challenge of bouncing back in a big way, scoring two goals and setting up two others, to finish one point shy of his career-high in points. “That was pretty incredible,” center Sidney Crosby said. “He was just dancing out there. It’s fun to see him play like that.”

*** Defenseman Olli Maatta left the game midway through the second period after Minnesota’s Nino Niederreiter shoved him into a door that had just been opened at the Wild bench. ““I pushed him and then I went for a change,” Niederreiter said. “I think he toe-picked at the same time. .. “If the door is closed, nothing happens.” Maatta was down on the ice in obvious pain for a minute or two before being helped down the runway near the visitors’ bench. He was carried out of the locker room on a stretcher or spine board and taken to a hospital, where he was to be examined for possible damage to internal organs.

*** Malkin said he wanted to be a difference-maker after the Penguins’ miserable showing in New Jersey. “I play every game, but sometimes on the first shift you shoot and score, [and] it’s a little bit easy,” he said. “It’s good luck tonight for me.”

*** The victory was the Penguins’ third in a row against the Wild – the longest such streak in franchise history – and their fifth in the past six meetings.

*** Malkin has four multiple-point games this season. The Penguins are 20-0 all-time when he has four or more points.

*** David Perron and Beau Bennett also scored for the Penguins, while Mikael Granlund, Jared Spurgeon and Mikko Koivu got the Minnesota goals.

*** The Penguins, 11-7 overall, are 9-0 when scoring first.

*** Penguins winger Pascal Dupuis, on Malkin’s night: “He took over the game. Just took over the game.”

*** The Penguins are 8-3 in one-goal games.

*** Malkin’s first goal was the 100th he has scored on a power play. Mario Lemieux, Jaromir Jagr and Kevin Stevens are the only other Penguins players to reach that milestone.

*** Crosby, on the Penguins’ overall performance: “We have to keep it going now. But that’s definitely the way we wanted to bounce back [from the New Jersey game]. It was good, right from the start.”

*** Penguins defenseman Kris Letang had two assists, his second multiple-point game in 20151-16. He has eight points in his past eight home games.

*** The Penguins scored two power-play goals for just the second time in 18 games this season.

*** The Penguins scratched defenseman Rob Scuderi and center Nick Bonino, apparently because of illness. They were replaced by Sergei Plotnikov and Adam Clendening, the latter of whom earned his first assist with the Penguins.