PITTSBURGH — Tristan Jarry’s shutout streak was going to end sooner or later, but the Pittsburgh Penguins (17-10-4) three-game win streak also came to grinding halt. The Penguins defense made numerous uncharacteristic mistakes. Eventually, those became goals and the Montreal Canadiens (14-11-6) barricaded themselves against a furious Penguins rally in the third period. Montreal beat the Penguins 4-1 Tuesday at PPG Paints Arena.
The Penguins have one of the best home records in the NHL, which slipped to 12-4-2.
The force has been strong with Malkin, Guentzel and Bryan Rust. Just three minutes into the game, the trio created a turnover at the top of the defensive zone and quickly transitioned to a two-on-one. Rust faked a shot which froze Montreal goalie Carey Price, then put a soft pass on Guentzel’s stick. Guentzel (17) snapped it into the empty net.
It was the 10th goal Guentzel has scored since being assuming a spot beside Evgeni Malkin on Nov. 8. Guentzel has 32 points (17g, 14a) in 31 games. However, it was the last Penguins highlight until the third period.
Tristan Jarry began the game with the sixth-longest shutout streak in Penguins history. He made foiled four Grade A chances including a pair of Nick Cousins who was left alone in front of Jarry, then later alone in the slot. By the middle of the second period, Jarry owned the franchise record. It ended at 177:15 when the Penguins PK fumbled the puck twice in the slot, which left Jarry to face a two-on-none.
Tomas Tartar (10) picked the top corner on Jarry to complete Jarry’s run and tie the game in the middle of the second period.
A few minutes later, Kris Letang was the next Penguins defenseman to fall victim. Montreal forward Joel Armia muscled past Letang at the blue line for an uncontested chance. Armia (11) wristed it past Jarry from point-blank range.
John Marino was the fourth Penguins defenseman to get walked. Montreal defenseman Shea Weber (10) blew past the Penguins defensemen on the outside and stuffed in a wrap-around.
After breaking the streak, Montreal pounded the Penguins for three goals in just over seven minutes. The Penguins allowed just five shots in the first period, but Montreal put up 17 shots in the second.
The Penguins pressed Montreal in the third period, but Brendan Gallagher (14) scored into an empty net to cap off the night.