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Twenty Years Later - Penguins 6, Nordiques 3 - 10-25-10

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

"Twenty Years Later" is a segment, with a highly unimaginative name, which will appear on Empty Netters throughout the 2010-11 season. We will examine the Penguins' 1990-91 season which led to the first Stanley Cup title in franchise history. We will look back on games on a particular date and catch up with former players, coaches, executives and media members who were a part or around that team.

Today, we look at the Penguins' 6-3 win against the Devils, Oct. 25, 1990.


The Penguins broke a four-game winless streak at the Civic Arena. The Penguins took a 1-0 lead 5:33 into the first period when center Barry Pederson scored his third goal of the season by beating goaltender John Tanner from near the left circle. Right winger Joe Mullen and defenseman Paul Stanton had assists.

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Quebec tied the game, 1-1, less than a minute and a half later at 7:00 when rookie center Mats Sundin, the first overall pick in the 1989 draft, put a shot by Penguins goaltender Frank Pietrangelo off assists from left winger Mike Hough and center Joe Sakic.

The Penguins reclaimed a 2-1 lead at 8:12 when right winger Mark Recchi banked a backhander off a post. The loneĀ  assist went to defenseman Zarley Zalapski.

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A power play goal from the right circle by left winger Kevin Stevens at 12:45 would put the Penguins up 3-1. Right winger Rob Brown and Zalapski had assists.

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Less than a minute later at 13:24, Stevens - off a give and go with Recchi - would score the eventual game-winning goal off assists from "Option Line" linemates Recchi and center John Cullen.

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A goal by Quebec's Tony McKegney cut the lead to 4-2 at 2:47 of the second period. Defenseman Shawn Anderson recorded the only assist.

Midway through the period, Stevens recorded his second career hat trick by beating goaltender Ron Tugnutt at 10:00 with a rising backhander. Cullen and Stanton had assists.

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Defenseman Curtis Leschyshyn scored the first goal of the third period at 3:38. Assists when to center Marc Fortier and center Tony Hrkac.

An insurance goal for the Penguins came at 7:11 of the period from Brown off assists from left winger Bob Errey and Stanton.

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Notes:

-Pietrangelo recorded the win by making 19 saves.

-Penguins coach Bob Johnson actually questioned the effort of Stevens after game. He told the Pittsburgh Press, "He's still not hungry enough. How many could he have had tonight, six?"

-Cullen moved one point ahead of Kings center Wayne Gretzky in the NHL's scoring race with 31 points.

-During a second-period scuffle, Penguins defenseman Paul Coffey took struck Nordiques center Claude Loiselle with his own helmet. He was given a two-minute unsportsmanlike conduct minor for that.

Also in the news that day:

-Evander Holyfield claimed the heavyweight boxing championship of the world by knocking out James "Buster" Douglas in the third round in Las Vegas.

-Marion Barry, the mayor of Washington D.C., was sentenced to six months in prison and one year of probation for his conviction of a misdemeanor cocaine possession charge.

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