Penguins Lose Key Players

Michala McCullough, Editor in Chief

The Penguins had lost back-to-back games entering Friday’s rematch with the Rangers. They were not about to lose three straight for the first time this year.

Carried by the magnificent play of Marc-Andre Fleury the Penguins responded to a 6-1 loss to the Rangers on Wednesday at Madison Square Garden with a much better performance, beating the Blueshirts 2-1 in a shootout on Friday at CONSOL Energy Center.

“It felt good just to make some fun saves and the guys did a good job in front of me helping me out,” Fleury said in a press conference after the game. Fleury made a season-high 34 saves in the game.

In addition to Fleury’s excellence, Jussi Jokinen mad a great impression in his Penguins debut after being acquired from Carolina shortly before the trade deadline on Wednesday by scoring Pittsburgh’s only goal in regulation before scoring the game-deciding goal in the shootout.

The Penguins entered the game on Friday without three of their stars, Sidney Crosby, Kris Letang and Paul Martin.

And in the third period, the Penguins lost James Neal about halfway through the game. Neal was forechecking Michael Del Zotto when the Rangers defenseman turned and caught the Penguins forward with an elbow up high.

Neal stayed on the ice for a few moments. After athletic trainer Chris Stewart coming out to talk to him, Neal eventually got up and skated off of his own accord. He went straight to the locker room and did not return to the game.

To combat the recent injuries, the Penguins have called up forward Beau Bennett from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League.

The Penguins will face the Carolina Hurricanes in Carolina on April 9 at 7:00pm.