New York at Pittsburgh

Crosby notches fourth career hat trick as Penguins rout Rangers


PITTSBURGH -- Sidney Crosby made the Penguins' cap night giveaway at Mellon Arena an appropriate one.

Crosby had his fourth career hat trick and added two assists for his second five-point game and the Pittsburgh Penguins won for the fourth time in five games, 8-3 over the New York Rangers on Saturday night.

"It's always fun to get the hat trick, but especially tonight it was a lot of fun," said Crosby, who fell a point short of his career high for points. "It was pretty weird the way it worked out, but what better time to do it?"

Crosby scored once in the first and twice in the third period and added two-first period assists to help the Penguins rout the Rangers, winless in regulation at Mellon Arena in their past 13 tries.

"When I walked into the building and saw the free hats, the thought did cross my mind that hopefully somebody would get a hat trick to see those things on the ice," Pittsburgh coach Dan Bylsma said. "It takes a little bit of extra time, but I liked why they went on the ice."

Evgeni Malkin, Max Talbot, Mark Eaton, Pascal Dupuis and Tyler Kennedy also scored for Pittsburgh, which has won six of eight and remained tied with Washington atop the Eastern Conference standings with 36 points.

Defenseman Marc Staal, Matt Gilroy and Michal Rozsival scored for New York, which has lost four of six and is 6-12-1 since a 7-1 start.

The Penguins welcomed three regulars back to the lineup from injury -- winger Kennedy and defensemen Alex Goligoski and Kris Letang -- in scoring their most goals of the season and most against the Rangers since Oct. 14, 2000.

Crosby scored 17:43 into the contest to break a 1-1 tie and give Pittsburgh a lead it would never relinquish, barely keeping a New York clearing attempt in the zone, walking in and firing a wrist shot that beat Rangers backup goalie Steve Valiquette high to the stick side.

His second of the game and 14th of the season came 3:14 into the third, 2:51 after former Penguin Rozsival had pulled New York to 4-3. Malkin had slipped a puck along the goal line while Valiquette sprawled, and Crosby picked up the puck and banked it off him.

After Dupuis had made it 6-3, Crosby scored on the power play with 8:31 to play, firing a wrist shot from the right-wing circle just under the far crossbar, eliciting a deluge of hats onto the ice on a night in which the 141st consecutive sellout crowd at Mellon Arena was given free ballcaps upon entry.

"We played a great game tonight and got some breaks but we worked hard for them," Crosby said. "Anytime [your team] puts that many goals up, it's a fun game."

It was Crosby's second hat trick of the season, having scored three times Oct. 28 in a 6-1 home win over the Montreal Canadiens.

Crosby, who assisted goals by Malkin and Talbot, finished the game with a plus-4 rating, matching a career high.

"He's a great player," said Malkin, who with Crosby each have won a league scoring title in the past three years. "It's easy to play with him."

Talbot's goal was his first since he had two in Game 7 of the Stanley Cup Finals. He missed the first 21 games of this season after offseason shoulder surgery.

Kennedy closed out the scoring at 11:54 of the third, giving the Penguins their most goals in a game since Dec. 11, 2008, a 9-2 win over the New York Islanders.

The Rangers have allowed 13 goals in their past two games after a 5-1 loss at Tampa Bay Friday that coach John Tortorella called "probably our worst game we've played all year long."

"We played decent hockey [Saturday]," said veteran winger Vinny Prospal. "Obviously, the score didn't indicate that in our favor, but we were in the hockey game. We were close. It was totally different than in Tampa yesterday.... The effort was there tonight."

The Penguins spent most of the final 10 minutes of the game on the power play after the Rangers looked for retribution on Pittsburgh agitator Matt Cooke, whose hit on Artem Ansimov knocked him out of the game.

"He leaves his feet, it's an absolute head shot, the linesman jumps in when somebody else is trying to take care of business, that should have been left alone," Tortorella said. "This is where our game is screwed up as far as I'm concerned. There is just no respect for these types of situations."

The teams meet again Monday in New York.


  • Crosby had six points with a goal and five assists Dec. 13, 2006, in an 8-4 win at Philadelphia.
  • Malkin has a six-game scoring streak.
  • Kennedy had missed the previous 11 games with a lower-body injury believed to have been his groin, Letang hadn't played in nine games due to a shoulder ailment and Goligoski missed six with an undisclosed ailment.
  • Rangers defensemen have 18 goals this season, tied for second in the NHL.
Copyright 2018 by STATS LLC and The Associated Press. Any commercial use or distribution without the express written consent of STATS LLC and The Associated Press is strictly prohibited.
Sidney Crosby (three goals, two assists) finishes one point shy of his career high.  (Getty Images)
Sidney Crosby (three goals, two assists) finishes one point shy of his career high. (Getty Images)
NY Rangers (13-12-1)1113
Pittsburgh  (18-9-0) «3148
Three Stars
S. Crosby

Goals: 3
Assist(s): 2
E. Malkin

Goals: 1
Assist(s): 1
B. Orpik

Goals: 0
Assist(s): 2

Related Video

Scoring Summary
08:50Marc Staal (3), Wrist Shot. Assist: Drury, Kotalik
14:37Evgeni Malkin (8), Wrist Shot. Assist: Crosby, Guerin
17:43Sidney Crosby (13), Wrist Shot. Assist: Goligoski
18:29Maxime Talbot (1), Backhand Shot. Assist: Crosby, Letang
14:33Matt Gilroy (4), Wrist Shot. Assist: Prospal, Gaborik
19:59Mark Eaton (3), Slap Shot. Assist: Adams, Orpik
33.0Michal Rozsival (1), Wrist Shot. Assist: Gaborik, Avery
03:14Sidney Crosby (14), Wrist Shot. Assist: Malkin
07:20Pascal Dupuis (7), Slap Shot. Assist: Orpik, Gonchar
11:29Power Play - Sidney Crosby (15), Slap Shot. Assist: Goligoski, Gonchar
11:54Power Play - Tyler Kennedy (6), Slap Shot. Assist: Letang, Fedotenko
Penalty Summary
37.0Eaton, 2 min, Holding the Stick
04:42Avery, 2 min, Goaltender Interference
17.0Guerin, 2 min, Hooking
07:47Prospal, 2 min, High-Sticking
16:47Del Zotto, 2 min, Slashing
07:39Cooke, 2 min, Interference
10:16Brashear, 4 min, Roughing
12:02Callahan, 5 min, Fighting
12:02Callahan, 10 min, Misconduct
12:02Cooke, 5 min, Fighting
12:02Cooke, 10 min, Misconduct
13:46Avery, 5 min, Fighting
13:46Avery, 2 min, Instigator
13:46Avery, 10 min, Misconduct
Shots On Goal
New York136625
Steve Valiquette60:00258
Marc-Andre Fleury60:00223
Game Information
Attendance - 17122
Referees - David Banfield, Stephen Walkom
Linesmen - Derek Amell, Steve Barton
Other Games
TB 3 Final
Dal 4
Cal 4 Final
Colu 3
Chi 1 Final
LA 2
NYI 1 Final
NJ 6
Phi 0 Final
Atl 1
Fla 1 Final
Nash 4
Ott 3 Final
Bos 4
Wash 4 Final
Mon 3
Det 4 Final
StL 3
Car 1 Final
Buf 5
Min 3 Final
Colo 2
Edm 3 Final
Van 7