Inserito il - 30 ott 2017 : 08:49:13
Considering the end result, it’s a trade-off Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins can live with.
McDavid assured the struggling Oilers of a least a point with a late goal , but Phil Kessel beat Cam Talbot 42 seconds into the extra period to lift the two-time defending Stanley Cup champion Penguins to a 2-1 victory on Tuesday night.
Challenged repeatedly by coach Mike Sullivan to shoot the puck more, Kessel sprinted down the slot, took a feed from Evgeni Malkin and slipped the puck past Talbot for his 299th career goal.
“Just trying to catch up to (Malkin) and get open,” Kessel said. “He found me and it was fortunate to get in. I’ve had some chances and they haven’t gone in.”
McDavid ended a seven-game goal drought by chasing down a puck and flipping it by Matt Murray with 2:53 left in regulation, his fifth point in three career meetings with Crosby. It wasn’t quite enough to snap the Oilers out of an early-season funk. Talbot stopped 42 shots but received little help from an offense that can’t seem to get going.
Edmonton has just 15 goals through eight games, last in the Western Conference.
“We went through it a little bit last year later in the season,” McDavid said. “Just calm down. I mean, but we just have to relax, we’re getting these chances in front of the net that should be automatic and we’re not scoring them. Myself included.”
The 30-year-old Crosby still doesn’t have a point when facing the 20-year-old McDavid, but the Penguins improved to 3-0 against Edmonton when McDavid is in the lineup thanks to a solid all-around defensive effort that included 29 saves from Murray and the kind of responsible play in their own end that was lacking in a 7-1 blowout loss to Tampa Bay on Saturday that cost backup goalie Antti Niemi his job.
“We knew as a team we could play a lot better than the effort we had in Tampa,” defenseman Brian Dumoulin said. “That wasn’t who we were. That wasn’t our identity.”
The central figures in the biannual meeting between the best players of their respective generations tried to downplay the hype. Probably a good idea. For all the star wattage Crosby and McDavid bring, their respective teams have spent the opening weeks of the season trying to figure things out.
McDavid, is trying to help the Oilers build off the franchise’s first playoff appearance in 11 years but can’t seem to put the puck in the net. The Penguins have been erratic early, who edged Crosby for the Hart Trophy as NHL MVP last season,[url=http://www.hockeyjetsshop.com/adidas-connor-hellebuyck-jersey]Authentic Connor Hellebuyck jersey[/url], particularly on defense.
There was a definite buzz — at least what passes for buzz in October — as Crosby and McDavid skated to center ice for the opening faceoff. But both players, and just about everyone else, spent most of the night being upstaged by the goalies.
Talbot stretched out his left pad to stuff Kessel on a wide-open backhand early in the second to keep the game scoreless. Murray put together a dazzling sequence later in the period, sticking his paddle out to knock Mark Letestu’s shot out of harm’s way.
“I’m going to make that same shot 100 times,[url=http://www.bluesofficialhockey.com/adidas-carter-hutton-jersey]Authentic Carter Hutton jersey[/url], sometimes,” Letestu said. “You have to, give the goalie credit for the desperation there.”
The flurry ended with Dumoulin scrambling to the goalmouth to knock away a flip to the open net by McDavid.
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Ian Cole, wearing a full shield for extra protection after losing several teeth when he blocked a shot with them earlier this month, beat Talbot with a wrist shot that zipped by his blocker 3:24 into the third. Riley Sheahan picked up the secondary assist for his first point with Pittsburgh after coming over in a trade with Detroit last weekend.
It appeared that might be enough until McDavid,[url=http://www.bluesofficialhockey.com/adidas-jake-allen-jersey]adidas Jake Allen jersey[/url], at the end of a long shift, found one last burst. He extended to catch up with a pass and fired a wrist shot from the left circle over Murray’s glove.
NOTES: McDavid played 21:57 and finished with five shots. Crosby played 21:59 and also had five shots. ... Pittsburgh D Justin Schultz left in the first period with concussion-like symptoms after being tripped by Edmonton’s Drake Caggiula. ... Penguins forward Carter Rowney has a broken hand and is out at least a month. ... The Penguins went 0 for 3 on the power play, ending a streak of six straight games with a power-play goal.
Of all the storylines that surrounded the Pittsburgh Penguins repeating as champions last season, it might have been lost on most just how resurgent Justin Schultz has been since joining Pittsburgh.
It’s easy to forget that he was a legit reclamation project when the Penguins picked him up in a low-risk trade. The returns were nice almost from the get-go, but even then,[url=http://www.capitalshockeyshop.com/adidas-nicklas-backstrom-jersey]adidas Nicklas Backstrom jerseyadidas Nicklas Backstrom jersey[/url], consider this: Schultz generated an impressive 51 points in 2016-17.
For some perspective, Erik Karlsson, that tied Torey Krug for the seventh-best output among NHL defensemen, and he was right up there with every blueliner outside of the Norris Trophy finalists,[url=http://www.capitalshockeyshop.com/adidas-philipp-grubauer-jersey]adidas Philipp Grubauer jersey[/url], a group of guys who may secretly be aliens in Brent Burns, and Victor Hedman.
(Those three are almost suspiciously good. Just saying, gang.)
Anyway, it was often lost just how big a role Schultz played, with all the justifiable “Penguins won a Cup even with Kris Letang out” comments, not to mention that such a group was pretty beaten-down even among guys who managed to suit up.
So, the good news is that the Penguins have grown accustomed to dealing with injuries. It’s been something they’ve had to roll with well before Mike Sullivan let them unleash their speed and skill in delightful ways.
On the other hand, this season will provide a real test of the effects of attrition; just because you pushed that boulder up the hill many times doesn’t mean you’ll do it every time.
Schultz was placed on IR today due to a concussion, this group is looking a little thin on the blueline. As refreshing as it is to see former Toronto Maple Leafs fans debate topic Frank Corrado back in the NHL, and with Matt Hunwick also day-to-day, the Penguins would likely not prefer this route. It’s probably worth noting that guys like Ian Cole might be feeling a little extra sore, too.
Speaking of routes, the Penguins must brave a threatening set of pot holes starting this weekend. Take a gander at a foreboding schedule that might make them miss supporting cast characters such as Schultz:
So, but the Jets aren’t exactly the squad you’d pencil in an automatic W against. (Aside: you never know when offenses will go cold for a night, the Penguins begin at home tonight, but on paper that seems as fun to watch as it will be threatening for both defenses, eh?)
As you can see, the weekend begins a run where they’ll face five road games in a row and seven of eight away from home. There’s at least a break between this weekend’s back-to-back and the following three-game set, but that’s still three back-to-backs between today and Nov. 11. That last back-to-back also features the teams that are licking their chops the most for revenge against the Penguins in the Capitals and Predators.
They probably won’t take it easy on that road-weary crew, then.
Now, this might be one of those times where they wobble a bit (picture them suffering in the winter like those surreal moments in “March of the Penguins”), this isn’t to say that the 6-3-1 defending champs are just going to crater. Still, so Penguins fans shouldn’t get too upset if there’s a lull in the making.
ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) Best known as a defensive-minded center, Mikko Koivu came up big at the other end Saturday night for the Minnesota Wild" data-canon="Minnesota Wild" data-type="SPORTS_OBJECT_TEAM" data-league-abbreviation="NHL" data-team-abbreviation="MIN">Minnesota Wild.
The Wild captain scored midway through the third period to lift Minnesota over the Pittsburgh Penguins" data-canon="Pittsburgh Penguins" data-type="SPORTS_OBJECT_TEAM" data-league-abbreviation="NHL" data-team-abbreviation="PIT">Pittsburgh Penguins 2-1.
Daniel Winnik also scored and Devan Dubnyk made 29 saves. The Wild, winless in their first four one-goal games this season,[url=http://www.hockeyjetsshop.com/adidas-connor-hellebuyck-jersey]adidas Connor Hellebuyck jerseyadidas Connor Hellebuyck jersey[/url], have won three of four overall.
''I think we're starting to show the way we need to play to win hockey games,'' Koivu said. ''There were some parts of that early on and we just couldn't keep it for 60 minutes.''
The Wild have allowed eight goals in their past four games.
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It starts with Koivu, a finalist last season for the Frank J. Selke Trophy awarded as the league's top defensive forward.
Coach Bruce Boudreau likes to put the line of Koivu, Jason Zucker and Mikael Granlund against other team's top players,[url=http://www.lightningofficialhockey.com/adidas-steven-stamkos-jersey]adidas Steven Stamkos jersey[/url], many that are more well-known for their offensive prowess.
''You know (Koivu) takes challenges,'' Boudreau said. ''He was against (Sidney) Crosby all night long and I thought he did a tremendous job. You know last game he was against (Islanders captain John) Tavares all night long. It gets him going when we challenge him with things like this. He took it as a challenge and he went out and did a great job at it.''
The line of Crosby, Jake Guentzel and Conor Sheary had just five shots on goal. The trio has 13 goals this season.
''They've got some of the best offensive guys in the league and I thought we did a good job shutting them down,'' Winnik said.
Minnesota blocked 18 shots.
Evgeni Malkin scored for Pittsburgh,[url=http://www.capitalshockeyshop.com/adidas-nicklas-backstrom-jersey]Authentic Nicklas Backstrom jersey[/url], which is starting a five-game trip that includes a swing through Western Canada.
The Penguins have scored just six goals in four games, yet won two of those, both 2-1 in overtime.
''We have to find a way to play our game for 60 minutes, kind of sit back. When we need a goal we start going. We had tons of chances at the end again,[url=http://www.capitalshockeyshop.com/adidas-philipp-grubauer-jersey]Authentic Philipp Grubauer jersey[/url],'' defenseman Kris Letang said. ''That's the big key right now. I think we play one good period, we just can't score.''
On the winning goal, Kyle Quincey kept the puck in at the left point and zipped a pass across to Mike Reilly at the right wall. His wrist shot from the circle was deflected by Koivu between the pads of Matt Murray at 9:03.
Murray lost for the first time in regulation this season, having won seven straight starts since an overtime loss on opening night. He had 27 saves.
Coach Mike Sullivan hasn't decided if Murray will play Sunday in Winnipeg or if Casey Desmith will play in his first NHL game.
Malkin's slapshot from the right circle deflected off Luke Kunin and Quincey for a power-play goal midway through the first, but Winnik deked Murray to score on a rebound less than two minutes later and tie it 1-1.
Pittsburgh, which entered with the league's fifth-best power play at 27.3 percent, has scored a power-play goal in all seven road games this season and nine of 12 games overall.
NOTES: Malkin has three goals and seven assists in his last seven games against the Wild. ... Minnesota C Matt Cullen got his 2017 Stanley Cup ring earlier in the day. The 40 year old spent the last two seasons with Pittsburgh and strongly considered retiring before signing with his home state Wild in August. ... Wild RW Nino Niederreiter, who's missed six games with a high ankle sprain, is expected to return to the lineup Tuesday.