Five different Pittsburgh players scored on Buffalo ice on Wednesday night, and the Penguins reached the 40-victory mark in a season for the earliest time ever – in 57 games – in a 5-1 victory over the Sabres.
Pittsburgh’s previous quickest road to 40 wins covered 65 games in 1995-96.
Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, James Neal, Brian Gibbons and new call-up Harry Zolnierczyk all scored for the Penguins (40-15-2). Marc-Andre Fleury (31-13-1) stopped 24 of 25 shots for his 31st win in goal.
Drew Stafford scored for Buffalo (15-33-8), who have no wins in their last eight home games. U.S. Olympic goaltender Ryan Miller (14-22-3) took the loss.
Pittsburgh leads the New York Rangers by 17 points in the NHL’s Metropolitan Division, and holds a 7-point advantage over Boston in the race for the top playoff position in the Eastern Conference.
The Penguins will host the Rangers on Friday night before taking a 20-day break during the Sochi Winter Olympics Games. Friday’s game will be broadcast on 96.3 KQW, beginning at 6:30 PM.