Sports Network | October 16, 2010
(Sports Network) - Fresh off their first-ever win in their new building, the Pittsburgh Penguins will try to post a road victory over an intrastate rival tonight when they visit the Philadelphia Flyers at the Wells Fargo Center.
Pittsburgh opened the CONSOL Energy Center with a 3-2 loss to the Flyers on October 7 and wasn't able to secure a victory until Friday night, when the Pens earned their first win in their fourth game at the brand-new arena.
The Pens needed overtime to post the victory over the New York Islanders, as Alex Goligoski scored 1:51 into OT to give Pittsburgh the 3-2 decision.
In the extra session, Milan Jurcina was called for hooking less than a minute in, giving the Pens a 4-on-3 advantage. From the right point, Evgeni Malkin blasted a slap shot that hit off a body in front and kicked out to the left side where Goligoski slammed it home for the win.
"We won't have to answer questions about it anymore," Goligoski said about finally winning at the building that replaced the legendary Igloo. "It's good to get the first one for sure -- especially for the fans."
Michael Rupp and Eric Tangradi each had a goal in regulation for the Penguins, while Brent Johnson made 22 stops in the victory.
Marc-Andre Fleury is expected to get the start in net for Pittsburgh tonight and the Penguins' No. 1 goaltender will try to shrug off an 0-3-0 start to the season. Fleury has excellent career numbers against the Flyers, going 19-7-0 with a 2.68 goals-against average in 29 starts,
The Flyers, meanwhile, are coming off Thursday's loss to the visiting Tampa Bay Lightning. Pavel Kubina netted the game-winning score early in the third period to back 24 saves from Dan Ellis as Tampa Bay clipped Philadelphia, 3-2. The setback dropped the Flyers to 1-1 on a five-game homestand.
Former Flyer and current Lightning forward Simon Gagne made his return to Philadelphia, where he played from 1999-2010. He recorded one shot in just over 19 minutes of action and the Flyers paid tribute to their former first- round draft pick with a video package played during the first period.
"It was actually a nice gift from the Flyers," Gagne said after the game. "The ovation from the fans was great. Even in the warm-up when I jumped on the ice I got some cheers from the fans. It was a tough one to go through, a lot of emotions to go through. That video was something."
Danny Briere and Nikolay Zherdev scored for the Flyers, who saw their first regulation loss of the year after starting the season 2-0-1. Brian Boucher allowed three goals on 24 shots in the setback.
"Give credit to them -- they were opportunistic and they played a pretty good road game," said Boucher. "We are not happy with this loss."
Flyers rookie netminder Sergei Bobrovsky is expected to get the start tonight. The 22-year-old Bobrovsky, who had played professionally in Russia before signing a three-year entry level deal with the Flyers in May, is 2-0 with a .931 save percentage and 2.00 goals-against average in his first two NHL starts.
Philadelphia has been terrible on the power play so far this year, scoring just once on 17 opportunities with the man advantage. The Flyers were 0-for-4 against Tampa on Thursday.
The start time of tonight's game was pushed up an hour because the Philadelphia Phillies are hosting the San Francisco Giants tonight in Game 1 of the National League Championship Series. The baseball game, which is being played across the street at Citizens Bank Park, is scheduled to begin at 7:57 p.m. (et).
The Penguins dominated the Flyers in the 2009-10 season series, winning five of the six encounters between the rivals, but Philly posted the win last week in the Steel City. Still, Pittsburgh has taken seven of 10 and 12 of the last 17 meetings overall and has claimed five straight in Philadelphia.