Blue Jackets-Penguins Preview

The Pittsburgh Penguins continue to win despite offensive woes highlighted by minimal contributions from Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin.

The Columbus Blue Jackets enjoyed success against them last season and may be happy to be on the road for Friday night's matchup.

Pittsburgh (10-5-0) averages 2.3 goals for one of the league's lowest marks with Malkin and Crosby combining for six after each had 28 a season ago.

Neither scored Wednesday, though Crosby had a pair of assists in a 4-3 shootout win over Montreal.

''We haven't really played our best through this first (15) games but we're still winning games,'' said winger Patric Hornqvist, who scored the tying goal in the third period off an assist by Crosby.

Malkin has gone five games without scoring. He has six goals and eight assists in 10 regular-season games against Columbus, with at least one point in each of them.

Crosby has two goals in 15 games for his slowest start to a season. He has 20 points in 14 regular-season contests against the Blue Jackets.

Columbus (4-12-0) took three of four from Pittsburgh in 2014-15 behind five goals from Nick Foligno after dropping the previous six regular-season matchups.

The Blue Jackets have posted all of their wins on the road, dropping to 0-6-0 at home with Tuesday's 5-3 defeat to Vancouver. They blew a one-goal third-period lead by conceding two goals in a 4:47 span.

"The goals we gave up were way too easy," coach John Tortorella told the Blue Jackets' official website. "We worked hard for our chances and gave up too many easy goals. It's underneath the hash marks, people getting behind us, and simple puck battles."

Columbus continues to search for offense from its 2014-15 leaders in points, Foligno and Ryan Johansen. Foligno has six points while enduring an 11-game goal drought while Johansen hasn't scored in his last 12.

Another underachieving player is Brandon Saad, who has eight points after signing a six-year, $36 million contract in the offseason. The Pittsburgh native is eager for this game, though he has never scored in four against the Penguins.

"I think once you're out there on the ice and playing, it becomes just another game," Saad said. "But, any time you get to see family and friends out there, it's pretty special."

The Blue Jackets are 4-3-0 on the road under Tortorella, who replaced Todd Richards on Oct. 21.

Columbus' Sergei Bobrovsky is 5-2-0 with a 2.98 goals-against average in seven regular-season starts at Pittsburgh.

The Penguins will likely start Marc-Andre Fleury, who is among the NHL leaders with a 2.01 GAA. Fleury left briefly in the first Wednesday after taking an inadvertent stick to the mask from teammate Ben Lovejoy, and needed stitches under an eye.

"Guys get those often," Fleury said. "It's good to be part of the team a little bit, the stitchings."

Fleury is 5-2-0 with a 2.30 GAA in seven regular-season home starts versus Columbus.

The Blue Jackets have been successful on the power play at 20.7 percent while the Penguins have one of the best penalty-kill units at 87.5.

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