Originally posted on Fox Sports Florida  |  Last updated 2/12/12
After missing last year's playoffs, Evgeni Malkin has done more than his share as the Pittsburgh Penguins seek to return to the postseason despite the continued absence of Sidney Crosby. Malkin and the Penguins try to match their longest home winning streak of the season Sunday night when they host the Tampa Bay Lightning for the first time since Game 7 of last year's Eastern Conference quarterfinals. After totaling six goals during a 1-2-1 road trip, Pittsburgh (31-19-5) returned home Saturday and exceeded that output in a single 8-5 victory over Winnipeg - its fifth consecutive win at CONSOL Energy Center. The Penguins now can match their six-game home winning streak from Oct. 20-Nov. 21. Malkin matched a career high with five points (one goal, four assists) Saturday, giving him a league-high 67 on the season - five more than the Lightning's Steven Stamkos and Philadelphia's Claude Giroux. Malkin's linemate Chris Kunitz and Kris Letang also matched their respective career highs for points with four and three, respectively. Malkin's other linemate, James Neal, scored his 29th goal and added an assist, as did Jordan Staal in his return from a knee injury. "We talked before the game. We wanted to just move the puck," Malkin said. "We felt great, everyone." Malkin missed last spring's playoff series with Tampa Bay after undergoing surgery on two torn knee ligaments. Crosby was also sidelined with the concussion symptoms that still plague him. Pittsburgh nearly topped Tampa Bay despite the absences of the two stars. The Lightning ousted the Penguins only with a 1-0 win at Pittsburgh in Game 7. Tampa Bay won three road contests in that series as it rallied from a 3-1 deficit. The Lightning (24-24-6) went 6-16-3 through their first 25 road games of this season but are 3-0-1 over their last four. They improved to 7-1-2 in their last 10 games overall after a 2-1 victory at Buffalo on Saturday. "We know how well we play at home. We needed to prove to ourselves that we could win on the road, as well," Stamkos said. Tampa Bay split two home games with Pittsburgh earlier this season, winning 4-1 on Nov. 17 and losing 6-3 on Jan. 15 as Malkin scored the final three goals. Dwayne Roloson started the November win for the Lightning and might get the call again Sunday. Including postseason, the veteran has limited the Penguins to five total goals while winning four straight against them. He's riding a three-game winning streak in Pittsburgh. Usual Tampa Bay starter Mathieu Garon is 1-2-0 with a 5.11 GAA in three career starts versus the Penguins. Pittsburgh coach Dan Bylsma said his starting goaltender will be a gametime decision. Marc-Andre Fleury has given up three goals in each of the matchups with Tampa Bay this season. Backup Brent Johnson, meanwhile, has won three consecutive starts against the Lightning. If Johnson makes his 11th start of the season, he'll have to contend with a red-hot Stamkos. The All-Star center, who has a league-best 37 goals - seven more than Malkin - scored for the fourth straight game Saturday and has 10 points during a six-game streak. Stamkos has two assists in the season series with the Penguins.
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

LeBron James says Kevin Love-Celtics trade rumor is false

Michael Jordan gifts Kobe Bryant full set of Air Jordans

Bethune-Cookman football player killed at party

Former UFC heavyweight Kevin Randleman dead at 44

WATCH: Chelsea scores three goals in less than 20 minutes

Broncos safety Shiloh Keo arrested for DUI


Mountain West admits error, says Boise St. shot was good

WATCH: John Calipari loses his mind, gets ejected

Former Clemson star Tajh Boyd to speak at John Kasich rally

Peyton Manning's alleged not-so-wholesome image

Hawks not shopping Al Horford at NBA trade deadline

Report: Lincecum has been throwing in secret location

Check out this custom camouflage Oregon helmet

Ejected John Calipari tweets “they don’t need me and I love it”

Popovich would 'buy ticket' to watch Warriors play

Jamal Murray destroyed South Carolina defender with dunk

WATCH: Lon Kruger gets Oklahoma hoops squad hype for Kansas test

Texas signee glad he didn’t pick Texas A&M after alleged racism

Dallas Stars have passed the early tests in February

Could Matt Forte become the revival for Patriots run game?

Are the Celtics legimate contenders in the East?

WATCH: Jabari Parker is no joke at NBA Rising Stars Challenge

How Marvelous Marv Throneberry became a Met

WATCH: Filip Forsberg goes beast on Lightning with this goal

Carmelo Anthony on trade rumors: ‘I’m not going anywhere’

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Ranking the ten best free agent pitcher signings

Who had the best NBA All-Star Game of the last 40 years?

The winners and losers of the 2016 MLB offseason

On Kobe Bryant and taking greatness for granted

Bucks need to choose between wins, development

Fantasy booking WrestleMania 32

Unrestricted free agents each team must consider re-signing

QUIZ: Name the winners of the NBA Slam Dunk Contest

Thank you Daniel Bryan

The timeless greatness of Jaromir Jagr

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker