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Report Card: Penguins Dominate Lightning 6-2; Guentzel & Crosby Flying (+)

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Pittsburgh Penguins report card, Kris Letang, Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Jake Guentzel

Evgeni Malkin, Bryan Rust, and Jason Zucker were exceptional in the first game of the season. The trio followed that performance with an even better one in Game 2. However, the Pittsburgh Penguins’ top line, with Jake Guentzel and Sidney Crosby, also starred for the second consecutive game and scored a pair of even-strength goals as the Penguins overwhelmed the Tampa Bay Lightning, 6-2.

Read Dave Molinari’s game recap here for the details. Penguins game recap.

Crosby has six points (2-4-6) in the first two games of the season and back-to-back three-point games. The top three lines are filling the net.

“You want to keep that going. It might not last,” Crosby said. “It’s something — you want to keep riding that momentum if you can. If you want to win consistently, you need everyone to contribute. There’s no secret to that. We’ve been able to do it here for the first couple of games.”

Malkin and Zucker have a bit to prove, after injury-filled seasons limited their recent contributions. Zucker’s contract expires after this season, while Malkin is beginning the first of his new four-year deal. Both are at full speed early in the season.

We’ll get to more in the report card, but Kasperi Kapanen also is playing better hockey than he did at any point last season.

The schematic blueprint was fun and easy to follow Saturday. Tampa Bay is well-structured, and you got to see the “strategery” of the layers and transitions. The Penguins’ transition game was at full speed.

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Pittsburgh Hockey Now Editor-in-Chief, formerly 93.7 The Fan, Sportsnet Hockey Tonight, NHL Home Ice. Catch Dan tweeting @theDanKingerski and the official @pghhockeynow account.