Well, that’s why they play the games. Sidney Crosby’s scoring streak ended at 25 games as the Pens lost 2-1 in a shootout to … the Islanders?
Yes, the Islanders, one of the NHL’s worst teams. Not the Flyers, not the Rangers. Not the Bruins. The Islanders, the team that had won all of nine games before today. The one that just traded its top defenseman.
Josh Bailey scored for New York and Chris Conner scored for Pittsburgh in the second period, but that was all the scoring in regulation. Islanders goalie Rick DiPietro, returning after missing five games with injury, stopped 37 shots, including a shootout attempt by Crosby. Marc-Andre Fleury had 25 saves for the Pens.
In the shootout, Kris Letang and Evgeni Malkin converted their attempts for the Pens, but Crosby and Mark Letestu missed theirs.
It’s no fun to lose, but this is a good moment to appreciate what Crosby managed to accomplish. He scored in 23 straight games and got everyone talking about Mario Lemieux and Wayne Gretzky in the process – and he’s still only 23. Now that the spotlight is off, we can enjoy more of his brilliant play without worrying about attaching the streak to it.