Neither Teddy Blueger nor Jeff Carter are healthy enough to play, but the Penguins are lucky that Jake Guentzel is able to recover from his illness to answer the bell and slot into his normal spot.
It just seems like everything in conspiring in circumstance against the Pens right now, Bryan Rust measures up a shot and lets it go. It beats Martin Jones but hits the post and somehow stays out.
Shots in the first end up 12-10 Pittsburgh, it’s a good period but they get no results and no lead out of it.
Sidney Crosby continues his run of great play and opens the scoring 5:24 into the second period by pushing a slap shot to the far side low on Jones.
The lead barely holds for two minutes until Vince Dunn steps up from his defensive position off a faceoff win to beat Tristan Jarry and tie the game at 1-1.
Shots in the second are 15-9 in favor of Seattle, who shifted the ice and advanced their attack after the Crosby goal, but we go into the third still tied.
Almost halfway through the third, Guentzel pushes the Pens back to the lead with a shot all the way from the left wall that might have been just getting the puck on net for Rust to deal with, but finds its way into the net to give Pittsburgh the lead again.
With his assist on Jake Guentzel’s goal, Sidney Crosby became the sixth-fastest player in NHL history to record 900 career assists. pic.twitter.com/TVF2qAjL8g
— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) November 6, 2022
The Kraken get a fortunate bounce when the puck finds Yanni Gourde in the slot. He quickly snaps it in to again answer the recent Pittsburgh goal and tie the game at 2.
With just 3:34 left in the game, former Penguin Brandon Tanev wins it for the Kraken by finishing a pass from behind the net from Gourde. Brian Dumoulin goes down but fails to prevent the chance and it’s easy for Tanev to record the winning goal once the puck gets to him.
That does it for this one, with the Pens falling to 0-6-1 in their last seven.
- It just seems like the Pens are out of answers right now. Rust not scoring in the first on a close call, and the puck just bouncing right to Gourde pretty much encompasses this game. Sometimes it feels like nothing is going right, and unfortunately this is one of those times.
- The Pens pretty much just went with 10 forwards tonight, the continued absence of Blueger and Carter is looming large with them not trusting or using Drew O’Connor and Sam Poulin all that much (both under seven minutes of ice time).
- Isolate on Brian Dumoulin on both third period goals against and, oy. Not pretty. How much longer will be in a featured role? He was fourth among team defensemen in ES TOI, they’re already starting to wind him down, but Dumoulin just can’t stay on the ice and keep the puck out of the net right now. It’s a major issue.
- Crosby recorded career assist No. 900 in the third period, his first helper since October 22nd (not coincidentally the last Pens win). It sometimes seems like when he gets to a milestone like that there is a delay and then a breakthrough. Hopefully this will be that, even though first line production is the least of Pittsburgh’s concerns at the moment.
- The Pittsburgh penalty kill went 3/3 for what has become the rare night where they don’t allow a goal with that unit. On a night where you have to dig deep to find some positives, that is at least one.
- Each time the Pens got a lead at 1-0 and 2-1, Seattle quickly answered. When a team is struggling, it’s a problem when they give the lead right back. Jarry made 34 saves on the night and generally kept the team in it, but given the circumstances you would really like to see him stop that Dunn shot, for instance.