The Pittsburgh Penguins shot. And shot a few more times, but could not fight through the mass of LA Kings bodies which protected the LA net. The Penguins fired 37 shots at LA goalie Cal Petersen but had few second chances. The Penguins made just one mistake too many and lost their fourth straight, 2-1 at the Staples Center on Wednesday night.
The Pittsburgh Penguins were not without chances or the puck, but they were without goals.
Early in the first period, Kris Letang tangled with an LA forechecker and despite both players falling to the ice, only Letang went to the penalty box. Shortly after, uncovered LA forward Blake Lizotte (5) tipped Sean Walker’s slap shot for the first goal.
Penguins defenseman Marcus Pettersson was an unfortunate spectator several feet from Lizotte.
The Penguins nearly tied the game late in the first period. The goal light came on when Sidney Crosby deflected a pass towards the goal. The few thousand Penguins fans in the Staples Center roared, but the replays showed the fluttering puck hit the bottom of the crossbar and stayed parallel to the goal line but never crossed.
It took a few minutes, or more like 15 minutes before the Penguins began to find their west coast stride. The Penguins were bogged down by the LA neutral zone trap. Nor did Los Angeles create much offense at 5v5. Each team had eight shots, but LA had only…