for this game

Malkin notches hat trick as Penguins drub Maple Leafs

Jan 4, 2008 - 5:05 AM
PITTSBURGH (Ticker) -- After coming in from the cold, it took a little while for the Pittsburgh Penguins to heat up.

Evgeni Malkin recorded his first career hat trick to lead the Penguins to their fifth consecutive victory, a 6-2 triumph over the Toronto Maple Leafs on Thursday night.

Rookie Tyler Kennedy, Malkin and Petr Sykora each scored in a 48-second span in the third period for Pittsburgh, which was coming off a 2-1 shootout victory over the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday in the first NHL game played outdoors in the United States.

"We're on a roll right now," Pittsburgh coach Michel Therrien said. "I didn't like the way we started the game, but I thought we really changed the momentum in the second (period)."

Malkin notched his first goal of the night with 5:34 remaining in the second session to give the Penguins a 2-1 edge. Scott Clemmensen stopped Sidney Crosby's turn-around backhander, but Malkin stuffed the rebound past the netminder.

With the contest still in doubt early in the final session, Pittsburgh rallied for three quick goals to put away the contest.

"We played pretty well the first two periods," Clemmensen said. "I thought we were right there. Momentum is a funny thing. They capitalized on it."

Kennedy started the rally exactly three minutes into the period with his seventh tally of the season. After his initial shot was turned aside, Kennedy collected his own rebound and fired a backhander past Clemmensen to give the Penguins a 3-1 lead.

Malkin added to the lead just 37 seconds later with his second goal of the game. Breaking into the offensive zone with Crosby, the second-year Russian received a pass at the edge of the crease and chipped an odd-angle shot past Clemmensen.

Sykora needed just 11 seconds to give Pittsburgh a 5-1 advantage when he notched his 12th goal of the season, slamming in a rebound while breaking to the net.

"Our chances just went in, it seemed like (in the third)," Crosby said. "We were fortunate enough in the first half of the game, we got some good breaks, they hit a couple posts and we had some time to get back into it."

The three tallies were the quickest for the Penguins since November 22, 1972, when they scored three times in a 27-second span.

"An outburst like that shouldn't happen," Toronto defenseman Hal Gill said. "We should get fired up after they score a goal and go back at it, but that didn't happen."

Malkin netted his third goal of the night when he blasted a one-timer from the top of the left faceoff circle off a pass from defenseman Ryan Whitney to make it 6-2 with 4:32 remaining in the contest.

"The most important thing is winning the games," Malkin said through an interpreter. "We're playing better and better every game, so for me, it's the team winning. That's the best thing.

"The second (goal) is probably my favorite one because Sidney made a nice move through the defense and made a great pass."

Pittsburgh got off to slow start, getting outshot, 11-4, in the first period. Toronto took a 1-0 lead into intermission after Jason Blake scored against the Penguins for the 20th time - his highest total vs. any team.

After Sundin's centering attempt hit Pittsburgh defenseman Rob Scuderi's skate, Blake picked up the puck and squeezed it past goaltender Ty Conklin on the short side with 9:26 left in the opening session.

"I thought we played really solid offensively (in the) first," Maple Leafs coach Paul Maurice said. "We are having a hard time defensively. We struggled a little on the back end to start, and then struggled with rushes. They are a better defensive team."

The Penguins could have been facing an even bigger deficit had it not been for a good play by Scuderi early in the period.

Darcy Tucker thought he gave the Maple Leafs an early lead just 95 seconds into the contest, when his shot from the slot got through Conklin and trickled toward the net. But Scuderi was able to clear the puck just before it crossed the goal line.

The goal judge did not turn on the light, and the referee - who was stationed behind the net - waved off the goal. Their judgment was confirmed after video review.

Erik Christensen tied the game at 1-1 just 84 seconds into the second with a wraparound goal after picking up the rebound of Sykora's shot. Christensen collected the puck to the right of Clemmensen and quickly worked his way behind the net before banking it off the back of the goalie's left skate on the other side.

Conklin made 33 saves to improve to 6-0-0 this season, while Clemmensen stopped 18 shots in his second start of the campaign.

"(Conklin's) been solid," Crosby said. "Especially with the start we had, he really gave us a chance to kind of climb our way back in there."

Crosby, Jarkko Ruutu and defenseman Sergei Gonchar each had two assists for the Penguins, who have surrendered just eight goals during their winning streak.








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 0 1 2
    PITTSBURGH 0 2 4 6 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: TOR - JASON BLAKE 7 (MATS SUNDIN, ALEX STEEN) 10:34
    2ND PRD: PIT - ERIK CHRISTENSEN 6 (PETR SYKORA, JARKKO RUUTU) 1:24
    PIT - EVGENI MALKIN 16 (SIDNEY CROSBY, COLBY ARMSTRONG)
    14:22
    3RD PRD: PIT - TYLER KENNEDY 7 (JOR

    Jan 3 10:12 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 2
    PITTSBURGH 6
    3RD PRD: PIT - (PP) EVGENI MALKIN 18 (RYAN WHITNEY, SERGEI GONCHAR)
    15:28

    Maple Leafs vs. PenguinsJan 3 10:04 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 2
    PITTSBURGH 5
    3RD PRD: TOR - (PP) PAVEL KUBINA 3 (MATS SUNDIN, TOMAS KABERLE) 12:53

    Maple Leafs vs. PenguinsJan 3 9:57 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 1
    PITTSBURGH 5
    3RD PRD: PIT - PETR SYKORA 12 (JARKKO RUUTU, BROOKS ORPIK) 3:48

    Maple Leafs vs. PenguinsJan 3 9:39 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 1
    PITTSBURGH 4
    3RD PRD: PIT - EVGENI MALKIN 17 (SIDNEY CROSBY, SERGEI GONCHAR) 3:38

    Maple Leafs vs. PenguinsJan 3 9:37 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 1
    PITTSBURGH 3
    3RD PRD: PIT - TYLER KENNEDY 7 (JORDAN STAAL) 3:00

    Maple Leafs vs. PenguinsJan 3 9:35 PM


  • ------------------------------
    Toronto
    1 0 --1
    Pittsburgh 0 2 --2
    ------------------------------

    Shots on goal:
    ----------------------------------
    Toronto 11 10 --21
    Pittsburgh 4 11 --15
    ----------------------------------

    Goalies : Toronto, Scott Clemmensen (15 shots, 13 saves). Pittsburgh,
    Ty Conklin (21 shots, 20 saves). Referees: Chris Lee,

    Jan 3 9:12 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 1
    PITTSBURGH 2
    2ND PRD: PIT - EVGENI MALKIN 16 (SIDNEY CROSBY, COLBY ARMSTRONG) 14:22

    Maple Leafs vs. PenguinsJan 3 9:02 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 1
    PITTSBURGH 1
    2ND PRD: PIT - ERIK CHRISTENSEN 6 (PETR SYKORA, JARKKO RUUTU) 1:24

    Maple Leafs vs. PenguinsJan 3 8:35 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TORONTO 1 1
    PITTSBURGH 0 0 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: TOR - JASON BLAKE 7 (MATS SUNDIN, ALEX STEEN) 10:34
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    TOR 11 11
    PIT 4 4
    GOALIES: TOR - SCOTT CLEMMENSEN
    PIT

    Jan 3 8:14 PM


  • NHL
    TORONTO 1
    PITTSBURGH 0
    1ST PRD: TOR - JASON BLAKE 7 (MATS SUNDIN, ALEX STEEN) 10:34

    Maple Leafs vs. PenguinsJan 3 7:59 PM