The Carolina Hurricanes placed special emphasis on a better start in this game against Pittsburgh, but started slowly again and finished even worse as they lost to the Penguins, 3-1 in front of 15,042 at the PNC on Monday night.
The home team could not get an official shot on goal until midway through the first period and they were outshot 12-5 in the opening frame, even though they were able to tie the score 1-1.
Then after falling behind 2-1 in the second stanza, they only mustered three shots on goal in the entire third period in their defeat.
Coach Kirk Muller was disappointed in the "big boys" performance on his team and noted that the stars for the Pens got the job done, while the corresponding guys on the Hurricanes did not.
"We got pushed out of the game. We were not able to generate anything in the third period. They played a heavier game than we did, they won more battles, and they grinded harder," said the coach.
The Penguins put an end to their three game losing streak while the Hurricanes extended their losing streak to three.
The visitors jumped out to a 1-0 lead and were out-shooting the Canes 9-0 before the home team got a shot on goal, (and earned a mock cheer for doing so by their crowd.)
Tanner Glass scored off of a rebound by rookie Jayson Megna for Pittsburgh.
The Hurricanes would answer during a 5-on-3 powerplay chance later in the period when Elias Lindholm found Nathan Gerbe in front of the net. Gerbe was moved to the first line and had a very good game as he led the team with five shots on goal and led all Carolina forwards with 22:29 of ice time.
It was Lindholm's first career NHL assist.
Carolina played better in the second and both teams generated shots and chances, but Sidney Crosby made a perfect feed to Chris Kunitz, who had a step on Jordan Staal, and Kunitz made no mistake.
That goal turned out to be the game-winner, but Megna would score his first career NHL goal in the third to salt it away when a Crosby shot bounced off of him past Justin Peters.
The Canes will next take on the Tampa Bay Lightning at home on Friday night.
- The Canes were outshot for the game 29-21 and again, three shots in the third period will not get the job done.
- Alexander Semin had three shots on goal, three shots that were blocked, and missed the net twice for a team high eight shots taken. Semin has a four game point streak.
- Jordan Staal left the game with an injury, but then came back. There was no indication the injury was serious.
- Tim Gleason had a team high six hits. The Canes had a total of 22 for the game.