Scoring two goals in the first period, it’d be all the Penguins would need, as they went on to beat the Boston Bruins 2-1 Sunday afternoon.
Pittsburgh improves their record to 22-8-0 (44 points) and now runs their winning streak to nine games.
Captain Sidney Crosby buried the first goal for the Pens 12:06 into the first period, while forward Joe Vitale gave them their second tally with 36 seconds left in said period.
Crosby shows no signs of stopping, as he now has 48 points (13G, 35A) and continues to lead the entire NHL in that category.
Assisting on Crosby’s goal was none other than Chris Kunitz and Pascal Dupuis, who’ve once again found themselves on the stat sheet.
Kunitz stays in second behind Crosby with 40 points (18G, 22A) and now pushes his lead over Tampa Bay’s Steven Stamkos to two.
Dupuis has 21 points (14G, 7A) on the season and extends his points streak to three games.
Tomas Vokoun absolutely stonewalled the Boston Bruins.
Stopping 31 of Boston’s 32 shots, Vokoun stepped in for the red-hot Marc-Andre Fleury and delivered arguably his best performance of the year.
With the win, he now improves to 7-3-0 with a 2.88 goals against average and a .903 save percentage.
Other players who recorded points were forward Craig Adams and defenseman Brooks Orpik, who both assisted on Vitale’s first of the season.
Not everything went Pittsburgh’s way however, as they lost defenseman Kris Letang late in the first period.
Retrieving a loose puck back in their own zone, Letang appeared come up hunched over after swinging the biscuit around the boards and was sequentially removed from the contest.
As of right now the team is calling this an undisclosed lower-body injury, and by the way it looked he might have re-injured a nagging groin injury he sustained earlier this season.
The Pens can ill afford to lose any more players, especially players like Letang, and especially since superstar Evgeni Malkin is already currently shelved.
Letang is leading all NHL defenseman in points with 28 points (3G, 25A) and is the team’s top defensive skater.
The news for Malkin is that he skated Sunday, but was still not in the lineup for the game that day.
With the way the team’s playing right now, they might not necessarily need them for the time being, but if these injuries continue to linger it could become a problem for Pittsburgh.
Not only that, but if injuries continue to pile up, it also increases the chances they make a deal before the trade deadline April 3rd.
We’ll have to wait and see what both Letang and Malkin’s statuses will be when the Pens try to make it ten in a row Tuesday against the Caps.
Penguins take on the Capitals Tuesday in Pittsburgh at 7:30 p.m.