PITTSBURGH — Pittsburgh Penguins star center Sidney Crosby has been carrying the Penguins since injuries began to decimate their lineup in the final pregame season. The Penguins depleted lineup was dominating the Colorado Avalanche for much of the first period but trailed Colorado 1-0.
Until Crosby did what he so often does.
Crosby lept off the bench as the teams played four-on-four. He skated around one defender on the wall, cut across the slot, alluded another defender, held the puck until Avalanche goalie Philip Grubauer was sprawled on the ice then backhanded the puck into the yawning cage.
Of course, it wasn’t an open net until Crosby made it so.
🚨 SIDNEY CROSBY HIGHLIGHT GOAL 🚨 #WNH
— NHL (@NHL) October 16, 2019
Crosby was named the NHL third star for the week which ended on Oct. 13. He had seven points (3g, 4a) in four games. Without Evgeni Malkin, Nick Bjugstad or Jared McCann, Crosby and fourth-line center Teddy Blueger are the only regular centers in the Penguins lineup. The team has won three in a row including a weekend sweep in Minnesota and Winnipeg.
Rookie Sam Lafferty has been thrust into the second-line center role. Blueger elevated to the third line and defenseman Juuso Riikola pressed into duty as a fourth-line winger.
Crosby’s goal tied the game 1-1 with just a few minutes remaining in the first period. It was his fourth goal and 11th point of the season. Crosby was tied for fourth in NHL scoring. Last season, he finished with exactly 100 points and his best season in nearly five years.