PITTSBURGH — Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby scored his 500th career goal Tuesday night, the second player in franchise history to do so.
Crosby broke a 1-1 tie with the Philadelphia Flyers 16:34 into the first period, scoring on the power play with an assist from Evgeni Malkin.
Perhaps it was fitting that Malkin was represented in the goal, as the two superstars have been at the forefront of a franchise resurgence, leading the Penguins to three Stanley Cup title since entering the league.
As the goal horn sounded around the PPG Paints Arena, the entire Penguins team joined Crosby in celebration along the side boards next to Flyers goaltender Carter Hart.
The goal was Crosby’s 14th of the season, and not long after the tally, the Penguins tweeted out a video from owner Mario Lemieux, the only other player in franchise history to get to 500. Lemeiux, who led the Penguins to two Stanley Cup titles in the 1990s, finished his career with 690 goals.
“I’ve been able to witness most of them,” Lemieux said. “And I’m sure there will be plenty more in the future.”
Crosby, who led the Penguins to a 3-2 win over the New Jersey Devils on Sunday, played a shift at the end of the game with an open net on the other end of the ice, but never got a shot off, setting the stage for the feat on home ice against one of the franchise’s fiercest rivals.
The goal was Crosby’s 50th against the Flyers and came in a game where the Penguins were shooting for an eighth-straight victory. The rally, after a topsy-turvy start to the season, had the Penguins in first place in the Metropolitan Division as play began on Tuesday.
Crosby, 34, the No. 1 overall pick in 2005, has only played for the Penguins in his career, and though he’s battled injuries this season, he appears at the top of his game. Tuesday was his 38th game of the season, and he had 44 points and was averaging 19:45 time on the ice headed into the in-state battle with Philadelphia.
His career high in goals came in the 2009-10 season, when he finished with 51, and he’s topped 30 goals nine times.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
Source: ESPN NHL