Not every win is a lopsided affair, though the Pittsburgh Penguins handful of regulation wins have mostly been resounding efforts. On Sunday night, the Penguins battled and worked. They also finished their chances with frightening efficiency, including three goals in 61 seconds, for a 5-1 putdown of the New York Rangers at PPG Paints Arena on Sunday.
We’ll get to the tactical analysis and full player report cards, but let’s first acknowledge a few key details. Evgeni Malkin may not yet be in full beast mode, but he is again a commanding presence. In each of the last three games, the big 6-foot-3 Russian has looked more and more like a charging bull.
Malkin may have officially rounded into form on Sunday night.
On Sunday morning, head coach Mike Sullivan talked about John Marino’s need to keep his game simple. This season, Marino has sometimes tried to do too much with the puck.
“John Marino is a very good defenseman. He’s a mobile guy…he closes on our opponents as well as any defenseman we have when he’s at his best,” Sullivan said Sunday morning. “We’re just trying to help John establish more consistency…I think this year he has fallen victim to trying to do too much with the puck, and I think when John is at his best, there is an element of simplicity to his game…”
Marino and Marcus Pettersson did those things.
The Penguins didn’t have a great “Corsi” night, but they had a good night eliminating scoring chances and keeping the game in front of them. Marino and Pettersson each had rebound games.
Hey, no penalties for Pettersson and a little extra motivation on the walls.