Big Lead Sports Bar



RANGERS (18-8-2) 3
PENGUINS (14-6-4) 2

The Pens are to free hockey as Dion Phaneuf is to Elisha Cuthbert: they have a great affinity, perhaps even love, for it. And they gave another public display of affection on Wednesday night at Madison Square Garden, site of many a classic sporting events, such as Wrestlemania I.

The Pens did battle with the team that's employed everyone from Avery to Gretzky to Jaromir for 60 minutes, officially blowing a 2-0 lead in the third period on Petr Prucha's first goal of the season, ironic because just this afternoon Mark Madden had mused that Prucha would look good in a Penguin uniform.

The game started with some fisticuffs courtesy of Colton Orr and Eric Godard, which were about as predictable as Pitt beating Duquesne in The City Game.

Minutes after the fight, the lamp was lit by none other than Mark Eaton, his first of the season, and believe it or not, his first goal as a Penguin. Yes, the guy's played here for parts of three seasons, and this was his first goal. His last score was April 6, 2006, as a Nashville Predator.

A second goal courtesy of Jordan Staal (by way of Rob Scuderi) put the Pens up by a pair. Unfortunately, that goal would be negated moments later by Nikolai Zherdev (the Rangers' first goal in 108 minutes), and the Pens went into the third trimester up one, with their lead eventually disappearing thanks to the aforementioned Prucha.

Following a scoreless overtime, Dany Sabourin went on to go perfect in the shootout: he allowed a goal on every attempt. But you'll have those kind of nights; in all fairness, Sabourin has definitely saved the Penguins' rears in shootouts past. Game, set, match. Drive home (or in this case, hail a cab) safely.

Next up for the Pens is a second consecutive Staal Bowl, this time against 12-11-2 Carolina, featuring new associate coach/Penguins legend Ron Francis, who unfortunately will not be playing for the Hurricanes. Set your TiVo to 7 PM.

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