PITTSBURGH – Perhaps the grind of being on the road finally caught up to the Anaheim Ducks, who lost 3-1 in Pittsburgh on Monday night to close out a winless four-game road trip.
The Ducks have played 15 of their first 23 games on the road, including 12 of their last 15.
The Ducks jumped out to a quick start in the first period by registering the game's first 12 shots, but could not capitalize.
A day after being called up from the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins of the American Hockey League, Gibbons gave Pittsburgh a 1-0 lead 3:52 into the third period. Evgeni Malkin carried the puck around the Anaheim defense and slipped a pass to Gibbons, who sent a wrist shot past Ducks goalie Viktor Fasth (24 saves).
Olli Maatta added a second goal 1:02 later, but Ryan Getzlaf cut Pittsburgh's lead in half 26 seconds after that. Getzlaf drove towards Fleury and forced the Penguins goalie to slide to his right and out of the crease, leaving the net open for Getzlaf's wrist shot. The goal was Getzlaf's 11th of the season, and fifth in his last four games. The Ducks captain has earned eight points over that span.
But Sidney Crosby reestablished the Penguins' two-goal lead by scoring his second goal in 10 games with 12:04 left. Fleury, who has allowed two or fewer goals in 13 of his 18 starts, earned his 12th win of the season.
The Ducks, who are tied with the Chicago Blackhawks for the most points in the league with 32, have lost four straight games. Anaheim returns home for a brief two-game homestand beginning Wednesday night against the New Jersey Devils. The Ducks are the only NHL club with a perfect home record this season (8-0-0).
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