It’s been a good news/bad news/bad news/good news day for the Penguins.
The highly anticipated Pittsburgh debut of superstar winger Jarome Iginla was clouded first by news that top defender Paul Martin would be out of the lineup for six weeks, and then by a nasty facial injury suffered by Sidney Crosby.
Although he wears a visor, there was nothing the shield could do to prevent a Brooks Orpik slapper from catching Crosby flush in the side of the face during his first shift in this afternoon’s 2-0 win over the New York Islanders.
Here’s the clip:
He immediately fell to the ice, but was able to head to the dressing room under his own power.
There’s obviously concern any time Crosby takes a blow to the head given his concussion history, but he looked clear-eyed as he left.
Coach Dan Bylsma said after the game that Crosby had been taken to a local hospital where he underwent oral surgery after losing teeth.
Even without the league’s leading scorer, the Penguins had enough firepower to down the Islanders. Goals by Matt Cooke and James Neal and a third consecutive shutout from Tomas Vokoun earned Pittsburgh a 15th straight win. That ties the 1981-82 New York Islanders for the second-longest streak in NHL history.
Iginla was held off the score sheet in his first game with new linemates Evgeni Malkin and Neal. He was plus-1 over his 17:30 of action–1:44 less than he was averaging in Calgary–with three shots on net and two hits.