The Pittsburgh Penguins are doing their best to dispel the concept of a Stanley Cup hangover.
The defending NHL champions continued their early-season winning ways with a dominant 5-1 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Tuesday night at Mellon Arena for their sixth consecutive victory.
The Penguins improved to 8-1-0, the best record in the NHL, while completely controlling play throughout the game. Tyler Kennedy, Evgeni Malkin, Ruslan Fedotenko, Matt Cooke and Alex Goligoski all scored for Pittsburgh, which outshot the Blues 43-22 and had 14 of its 18 skaters earn at least one point. Marc-Andre Fleury improved his record to 8-0-0 by making 21 saves.
The Blues, who were coming off a 5-0 win at Anaheim on Saturday, never had a chance.
The Penguins took them out of the game early, outshooting St. Louis 20-3 in the opening period and scoring twice for a 2-0 lead.
Kennedy opened the scoring at 11:19 on the Penguins' 10th shot, coming off the left boards into the circle and beating Chris Mason with a rising slap shot from about 20 feet for his fifth goal of the season.
Andy McDonald took a high-sticking penalty at 11:09, and the Penguins needed less than a half-minute to capitalize. The Penguins controlled the puck and kept firing away until Malkin would up with the puck 15 feet away in the slot and beat Mason to the top corner. It was one of 12 shots for Malkin, who made life miserable for the Blues all night long.
Fedotenko and Cooke made it 4-0 with goals 36 seconds apart in the second period. Fedotenko beat Mason from the right circle, just above the faceoff dot, at 7:39, and Cooke deflected Kris Letang's blast from the left point into the net at 8:05.
Paul Kariya's tip-in at 12:54 of the second ended Fleury's shutout bid. But the Penguins kept the pedal to the metal, outshooting the Blues 15-8 in the middle period for a 35-11 margin after 40 minutes.
Goligoski added his second of the season at 9:44 of the second against Ty Conklin, who replaced Mason after two periods. The young defenseman leaked in from the right point to the middle of the circle and fired a perfect pass from Sidney Crosby into the far corner.
1 - 0 PIT
2 - 0 PIT
3 - 0 PIT
4 - 0 PIT
4 - 1 PIT
5 - 1 PIT
Delaying Game-Puck over glass
Too many men/ice - bench