Kunitz’s sock monkey hat trick! Pens win 6-1 over the Islanders!

The Islanders are a young, skilled group that is right there in the battle for a playoff spot. But on Saturday night in Pittsburgh, they got absolutely dominated by the high-powered Penguins.

Despite missing Evgeni Malkin, who missed the game with an upper-body injury and will be out 1-2 weeks per coach Dan Bylsma, the NHL’s top-ranked offense lit up the Islanders six times to come away with a 6-1 victory and extend their win streak to six games. Chris Kunitz scored his fourth career hat trick, Pascal Dupuis scored twice and James Neal tallied once for the Penguins. Sidney Crosby finished with five assists, tying a single-game career-high.

Tomas Vokoun got his first win on home ice. The Penguins chased Evgeni Nabokov from the net after two periods, with Kevin Poulin replacing him for the third.

Pittsburgh’s offense seems like it scores at will, but perhaps the most important takeaway from tonight was the Penguins’ defense. They held the Islanders to just 10 shots through the first two periods and 24 overall, keeping them from getting sustained shifts in the offensive zone.

That’s because the Penguins spent the majority of the game in their offensive zone. The extended time there was key to the win, as they wore the Islanders down and kept them from establishing any momentum.

“We’re happy with the game we played tonight,” Dupuis said. “We’re also happy with only allowing one goal. Lately, yes, we’ve been scoring goals, but defensively I don’t think we’ve been as good as we want to and tonight with that effort, we have to be pleased.”

Vokoun did a great job of describing the Penguins’ effort tonight.

“Sid has been playing unbelievable the last bunch of games,” he said. “He’s hitting his stride. Obviously Kuni is playing great all year. We have a great team. We’ve just got play the way we need to play to win. When we do that, it’s hard to play with us. We didn’t even have Geno today and look at what we did. Saying that, we’re aware (what will happen) if we don’t play the right way no matter how skilled you are. You’re leaving yourself open to 50-50 games. Usually when you do that, bad things happen.” >>Continue Reading<<

Media Links
Box Score
Game Recap
Photo Gallery
Making Chris-tory
Sid-sational Crosby
Post Game: Chris Kunitz
Post Game: Sidney Crosby
Post Game: Pascal Dupuis
Post Game: Tomas Vokoun
Post Game: Coach Bylsma

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