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Malkin's 4-point performance fuels Pens in rout of Bolts

Feb 26, 2012 - 5:27 AM Pittsburgh, PA (Sports Network) - Evgeni Malkin recorded his ninth career hat trick and second against the Lightning this season, as the Pittsburgh Penguins routed Tampa Bay, 8-1, on Saturday.

Jordan Staal scored twice while Chris Kunitz, Matt Cooke and Pascal Dupuis also tallied for Pittsburgh, which has won eight of its last nine home games. Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 34 shots in the win.

Teddy Purcell was the lone scorer for the Bolts, who have lost two in a row since winning three straight. Dwayne Roloson was torched for all eight goals on 34 shots.

The Penguins led 3-0 after a bountiful opening period.

Malkin found Kunitz from behind the net and he snapped his shot past Roloson from the left circle at the 11:09 mark. Cooke's wrister made it 2-0 only 50 seconds later and Staal added a short-handed breakaway tally with 5:20 remaining in the stanza.

"It's frustrating but at the same time some of them were things you can't control," said Roloson. "It's not an excuse for the performance today."

Staal lit the lamp from the slot on the power play midway through the second and Malkin netted his first goal with a slap shot from the right circle to make it 5-0 just under six minutes later.

Purcell finally got the Bolts on the board with a wrister late in the second.

Malkin completed his hat trick with a pair of tallies in the third.

"That's a motivated player and a tough guy we have there," said Pittsburgh head coach Dan Bylsma about Malkin. "He can do it all when he's on the ice and he showed that today."

At the 5:50 mark, Malkin received a pass in the neutral zone from Matt Niskanen, and maneuvered his way past all five Tampa Bay defenders before finishing from the left side.

His third tally came on the power play with 6:18 remaining. James Neal put a wrister on net from the left circle and Malkin flipped home the rebound.

Dupuis' goal with 48 seconds remaining concluded the scoring.

Game Notes

Malkin registered a five-point performance against Tampa Bay on January 15 in a 6-3 victory...Pittsburgh tied a season high for goals in one game, last accomplished on February 11 in an 8-5 win over Winnipeg...Lightning center Vincent Lecavalier missed his second consecutive game with a fractured bone in his right hand...Neal and Steve Sullivan picked up three assists each for the Penguins.