NHL Game Summary - Pittsburgh at Carolina
(Thursday, December 4th)
Final Score: Pittsburgh 5, Carolina 2
Raleigh, NC (Sports Network) - Sidney Crosby assisted on four of Pittsburgh's five goals, and the Penguins defeated Carolina by a 5-2 margin to spoil Paul Maurice's second debut with the Hurricanes.
Maurice, who was fired by the team during the 2003-04 season, held the head coaching job with Carolina for seven full seasons before being replaced by Peter Laviolette. Maurice guided the Hurricanes to a Stanley Cup Finals appearance in 2002 and is the franchise's all-time leader in wins with 268.
"We clearly have some work to do," Maurice said. "I think that we need to see some consistency in terms of what you see on the ice."
Petr Sykora scored twice, while Evgeni Malkin had two helpers for Pittsburgh, which has won three of five. Pascal Dupuis, Miroslav Satan and Ruslan Fedotenko all scored in the win, while Dany Sabourin saved 34 shots in his first back-to-back starts of the season.
"We were really light on our chances. Sabourin was outstanding," Penguins head coach Michel Therrien said. "I think our team took a little confidence out of his big saves, and special teams were good. I was glad to pick up the two points because that was a tough game to play."
Tuomo Ruutu and Matt Cullen tallied for the Hurricanes, who have dropped four straight at home. Michael Leighton struggled, allowing five goals on only 22 shots in the loss for Carolina.
"There's good will, and there's good fight," Maurice said. "When the puck comes back to our end, there should be some consistency in the positioning. The guys on the bench, they understand it, they're calling it out. There's some head-shaking going on when a mistake is made. They see it."
The Penguins got a power play goal midway through the opening frame. Crosby's pass across the slot went perfectly to Sykora, whose wrister beat Leighton on the stick side at 10:53.
Pittsburgh grabbed a 2-0 less than two minutes later, as Dupuis jabbed the puck away from Carolina in the offensive zone. Crosby picked up the loose puck and dished it back to Dupuis, who tucked it in past Leighton for the score.
Sykora got his second power play goal of the game early in the second period, gathering a rebound and beating Leighton at 1:53 before Ruutu came back with a goal just 19 seconds later to keep the Hurricanes within two.
Crosby continued his domination, garnering his fourth point of the night with an assist on Satan's goal at 6:51 to make it 4-1 Penguins. But with Eric Godard off for hooking, Cullen again brought Carolina to within two on a power play tally with 4:06 left in the second.
Fedotenko made sure Pittsburgh held a three-goal lead at the second intermission, blasting a wrister past Leighton with 1:33 left in the period.
Carolina couldn't muster anything in the third period, as Sabourin stopped all 14 Hurricane shots to complete the victory.
Carolina has lost five of six...Pittsburgh leads the season series, 2-0...The Hurricanes welcomed back forward Justin Williams, who missed the first 25 games with an Achilles injury...Laviolette is second all-time in victories for Carolina with 167. He guided the Hurricanes to their only Stanley Cup title in 2006...Pittsburgh placed defenseman Philippe Boucher on injured reserve Thursday with an undisclosed injury...Penguins forwards Tyler Kennedy and Mike Zigomanis missed the game after leaving Wednesday's contest against the Rangers with undisclosed victories. The team recalled forwards Chris Minard and Janne Pesonen from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the AHL to replace them...Carolina placed defenseman Dennis Seidenberg on injured reserve Thursday with a leg injury...Frank Kaberle of the Hurricanes left the game in the second period and did not return. He was playing in his 500th career game.
12/04 22:20:21 ET