For a team that won 70 percent of its home games last year, the Pittsburgh Penguins’ 0-2 start at Consol Energy Center has been something of a stunner.
For their fans, it’s been frustrating to watch.
Last night, boos rained down on the Penguins during a 4-1 loss to the Islanders, a game in which Pittsburgh looked lethargic on special teams, going 0-for-3 on the power play while allowing the Isles to score on both of their man advantages.
“At the same time, a slap in the face maybe won’t hurt.”
Pittsburgh could point to fatigue as the reason for its lackluster play. The Pens have played four of their first five on the road and four games in six nights, including a Friday-Sunday stretch in Winnipeg and Ottawa.
That said, nobody in the dressing room seemed ready to make that excuse — especially after such a poor outing on home ice.
“We’re not putting a very good product out there,” Chris Kunitz said. “They’re coming to watch supposedly a good team that goes out and plays, and we’re not doing that right now.
“[Booing is] what we’ve got to expect if that’s how we’re going to play.”
It’s been getting that spotlight since the Columbus Blue Jackets faced off against the Pittsburgh Penguins in a brisk playoff series, though it wouldn’t be surprising if the bad blood stemmed to Dubinsky’s days with New York.
To some, Dubinsky’s cross-check on Crosby will resonate far more than the end result of this game:
The bottom line is that he’ll get the last laugh, at least for now. (In-game, that moment merely drew a minor penalty.)
That’s because Dubinsky set up the overtime game-winner, and the cherry on the top of that spite sundae came with Crosby being on the ice when it happened:
They’re not just rubbing the Penguins the wrong way.
Cheap shot on a superstar, a little uncalled goalie interference and presto – Blue Jackets win!
The Buffalo Sabres probably deserved better during at least some chunks of their six-game skid, yet Jack Eichel swooped in on Friday to remind fans that there’s a light shining at the end of the tunnel.
You can watch his goal from tonight’s eventual 4-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes in the video above.
That’s not necessarily the absolute height of his on-ice magic, yet it clearly gave his team a lift:
Coach Bylsma: Feel like after Jack's goal, the game changed for us. #gamechanger