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NHL on NBCSN: Can Crosby continue his dominance of the Islanders?

Jan 29, 2013, 7:57 AM EDT

Source: Jim McIsaac/Getty Images North America Getty Images

NBCSN’s ongoing coverage of the 2013 campaign will continue tonight when the Pittsburgh Penguins host the New York Islanders at the Consol Energy Center at 7:30 p.m. ET.

Sidney Crosby ought to be giddy going into this contest. No team has treated the 25-year-old star forward quite as well as the Islanders have.

Crosby has slaughtered the Islanders throughout his career by scoring 20 goals and 66 points in a mere 36 games. If he could spend his entire career playing against New York, then his numbers would rival Wayne Gretzky.

Perhaps his most noteworthy game against them came last season when he found the back of the net twice and added two assists in his Nov. 21, 2011 return from a concussion that had sidelined him for 11 months.

Add Evgeni Malkin and James Neal into the mix and the Islanders will have their hands full at a time when New York can’t seem to hold their own defensively. They have allowed at least four goals in each of the first three contests of their current five-game road trip. That’s caused them to fall into a tie for 27th place in terms of goals allowed per game in the early portion of the season.

Still, the Islanders offense is clicking and, led by 22-year-old forward John Tavares, should create plenty of headaches for the Penguins. We could be in for a high-scoring affair.

Probable goaltenders: NYI – Evgeni Nabokov (2-1-1, 3.49 GAA, .894 SV%) | PIT – Marc-Andre Fleury (2-1-0, 2.28 GAA, .916 SV%)

Top scorers: NYI – Tavares (1-6-7, 5 GP) | PIT – Malkin (1-5-6, 5 GP)

Notable Injuries:
New York – Forwards: Joshua Bailey (knee), Jesse Joensuu (groin) Defensemen: Travis Hamonic (ankle), Lubomir Visnovsky (suspension)
Pittsburgh – Defensemen: Matt Niskanen (ankle)

  1. hockeywithdrawal - Jan 29, 2013 at 8:08 AM

    Honestly as opposed to having one person show up to play 150% (even if it is Crosby), I’d much rather see the entire team show up to play 110%. Seems like in different games different parts are doing great…just need to see them all working at the same time. Go Pens –

    • erbaker67 - Jan 29, 2013 at 8:23 AM

      I would have to agree. The Pens have not played a complete game and there are way too many “too cute” plays. The Pens need to get more shots on net in my honest opinion. Their best game by far was against the Rangers. As much as I love Geno, the turnovers have been killing us.

      • hockeywithdrawal - Jan 29, 2013 at 8:39 AM

        AGREED…that no-look pass is going to give me a heart attack! Letang needs to focus defensively too – his giveaways are almost leading the league. But, they’ll get it together.

    • steelpenbucs87 - Jan 29, 2013 at 9:17 AM

      I agree with this as well. It’s absolutely surprising to me (albeit VERY pleasantly so) that Paul Martin may be the most consistent Pens player so far this season. Really upped his game offensively and is playing really solid positional defense. If we can sort out the 3rd pairing we might be able to have a strong defense yet.

  2. chasestern - Jan 29, 2013 at 8:56 AM

    I should point out that aside from a few teams, everybody is experiencing this. It’s why we have training camp and preseason. Go Flyers!

    • erbaker67 - Jan 29, 2013 at 9:13 AM

      I do agree. There are a lot of teams experiencing this but until guys are more comfortable, why make unnecessary passes?

  3. buffalomafia - Jan 29, 2013 at 9:21 AM

    Cynthia Crosby the poster girl for Kleenex tissues!

    • hockeywithdrawal - Jan 29, 2013 at 9:24 AM

      You poor soul.

      • itripledogdareyou - Jan 29, 2013 at 8:15 PM

        buffalomafia – Making fun of Crosby doesn’t change the fact that he’s BY FAR the best player in the NHL.
        PPG over the past 3 years – 1.46
        Career PPG – 1.403
        Next best player is 1.23 and its his teammate Malkin.

        While scoring isn’t everything, no one can deny he’s had more hype and pressure than any other recent player, lived up to it and is the most talented player of this generation. Hate all you want, but you’d kill to have him on your team.

  4. franchisethighs - Jan 29, 2013 at 10:04 AM

    His whole being is like a volcanic eruption. Everyone knows its coming its just that there will be no survivors when it actually happens. There will be stories written many similar to the bible. The cross will be made of reebok sticks and on it will be the man who gave everyone else’s life a purpose. The great one. Sidney Crosby. I speak for him when I say to you all. “You’re welcome”

    • sportsfreak13 - Jan 29, 2013 at 11:04 AM

      You are pathetic. Signed a die hard pens fan and huge crosby supporter.

    • jpelle82 - Jan 29, 2013 at 11:28 AM

      i thought this guy was banned

      • sportsfreak13 - Jan 29, 2013 at 11:46 AM

        He is the internets version of herpes.

      • jpelle82 - Jan 29, 2013 at 11:56 AM

        maybe he got a job and he can access the internet from somewhere other than his mom’s basement. figured they would have just banned his ip address altogether

  5. franchisethighs - Jan 29, 2013 at 12:18 PM

    Yo R Dad these personal attacks are unnecessary and uncalled for please ban these unruly youths and the hoodlum antics.



    • sportsfreak13 - Jan 29, 2013 at 12:49 PM

      We have to read your crapp, you have to read ours. Your an embarassment to pens fans everywhere.

  6. bcisleman - Jan 29, 2013 at 1:44 PM

    Crosby and Jagr both have done very well against the Islanders over the years. Hopefully as Islander defensive prospects mature, that will change. For the moment, the Isles need to contain Sid. If they can, I like their chances. Isles problem on D is the 3rd period. That may be a product of too many games in too few days.

  7. 19to77 - Jan 29, 2013 at 3:23 PM

    Best hope he starts dominating SOMEBODY. He’s not been strikingly spectacular out there these first few games.

  8. hartnellswifehaswarts - Jan 29, 2013 at 5:00 PM

    Wow these pens fans are so great. I wish i could root for the best team in the nhl. I would probably start growing a thick jock too.

  9. ironman721 - Jan 29, 2013 at 5:28 PM

    Who cares if he dominates, as long as the team wins.

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