Sidney Crosby and Zach Aston-Reese each had a goal and an assist Wednesday as the host Pittsburgh Penguins overpowered the woeful Buffalo Sabres 5-2.
The Sabres’ 15th straight loss (0-13-2) set a franchise record.
Evan Rodrigues, Kris Letang and John Marino also scored for Pittsburgh, which improved to 13-3-1 at home.
Goaltender Tristan Jarry stopped 26 Buffalo shots.
Rasmus Dahlin and Victor Olofsson scored for the Sabres. Dustin Tokarski, making his first start since Dec. 21, 2015, because of injuries, made 37 saves.
Penguins winger Kasperi Kapanen left after taking a puck off his left ankle in the second period.
Rodrigues opened the scoring at 7:36 of the first. Sam Lafferty, from the left circle, found Rodrigues at the far side of the crease for a tap-in.
Pittsburgh pushed it to 2-0 at 15:44 of the first. A feed from behind the Buffalo net went off Sabres defenseman Colin Miller and to Letang, who swept the puck past Tokarski’s glove.
Dahlin cut it to 2-1 for Buffalo at 17:17 of the first. Taylor Hall won a faceoff in the Penguins end back to Brandon Montour. Dahlin was ready for the pass at the center point, and his one-timer sailed past Jarry.
Pittsburgh scored twice in a span of 2:07 late in the second.
Jared McCann, down low, set up Marino in the right circle for a one-timer that beat Tokarski far side and upped the lead to 3-1 at 17:29.
With 23.9 seconds left in the second and Buffalo on a power play, the Penguins’ Frederick Gaudreau pilfered the puck from Dahlin near the blue line. Gaudreau was chased by two Sabres and sent a drop pass to Aston-Reese trailing the play. Aston-Reese batted it in for a 4-1 edge.
Crosby scored on a breakaway to make it 5-1 at 3:51 of the third. He partially fanned on a forehand that squeaked past Tokarski’s blocker.
Olofsson was hooked by Mike Matheson and awarded a penalty shot at 14:35 of the third. He slid the puck under Jarry’s pads.
–Field Level Media