Hello, Goal Mine.
The Penguins officially christened Consol Energy Center with its first hockey game as their home ice in an exhibition against the Detroit Red Wings, their nemesis in the 2008 and ’09 Stanley Cup finals.
And the Penguins wasted no time lighting the lantern.
Only 1:21 into the first period, newly acquired right wing Mike Comrie took a mid-air swipe on a rebound of his own shot and swatted it past goalie Chris Osgood for a 1-0 lead. Comrie was assisted by Brett Sterling and Zbynek Michalek, then used a nice hesitation move to get the open shot.
Sidney Crosby scored similarly, swatting in his own rebound past Osgood for a 2-0 lead at 7:29. Kris Letang and Jesse Boulerice assisted. Ryan Craig made it 3-0 with a shot from the left circle that beat Osgood stick side and caromed off the post at 11:45. Mark Letestu and Brooks Orpik assisted.
The first fight occurred at 13:29, when right wings Boulerice and Aaron Downey squared off in the slot in the Penguins’ zone. They had the crowd holding its breath, as there was a long staredown before either threw a punch, but Boulerice made it worth the wait by pummeling Downey.
Perhaps it was revenge for this: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4PlNzARV0XM.
Another fight occurred with 1:43 remaining in the first, this one between Orpik and Todd Bertuzzi after Red Wings forward Johan Franzen was injured in a collision with Orpik, who received a five-minute penalty for kneeing, another five for fighting and a game misconduct.
The Penguins outshot the Red Wings, 20-7, in the first period.
As for other official firsts, a moment of silence in memory of the late public address announcer John Barbero – who died of brain cancer in July – was followed by the national anthem sung by Jeff Jimmerson.
The opening faceoff saw Crosby, Evgeni Malkin and Pascal Dupuis with Orpik and Letang and Marc-Andre Fleury in goal for the Penguins and Valtteri Filppula with Franzen and Bertuzzi and defensemen Ruslan Salei and Jonathan Ericsson and Osgood for the Wings.