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Penguins vs. Oilers Recap: Phil thrills with OT goal in Pittsburgh win

About as exciting a 2-1 game as you’ll ever see, with chances galore but goals at a premium. It started Sid vs. Connor but ended up won by a Phil Kessel OT goal

NHL: Edmonton Oilers at Pittsburgh Penguins Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports


Welcome to Pittsburgh, Riley Sheahan! Carter Rowney (hand - IR) is out, so McKegg bumps down a line and Sheahan slots in as 3rd line center.

1st period

Not too much goes down. Ryan Reaves beats up a kid, Justin Schultz leaves the game and won’t return and the Penguins get a few good looks on a power play but can’t cash in.

Shots are 15-8 after the first, Cam Talbot pretty steady looking for the Oilers.

2nd period

Evgeni Malkin feeds Phil Kessel on a 2-on-1 but no goal.

Weird to see the Pens not hemorrhaging shots and goals against.

Crosby and McDavid trade chances of dominating possession in the offensive zone with the other on the ice, but no goals.

Patric Hornqvist goes to the box, and Brian Dumoulin goes all Rob Scuderi (the good kind) and blocks McDavid from an open net (might have hit Hagelin’s stick first). This happened just after Matt Murray used his stick to dive back and rob Mark Letestu of an otherwise open net.

The Oil get another open net but Olli Maatta reaches his stick out to deny the puck from going in the empty net. Feels like the Pens are on borrowed time but somehow the score remains 0-0, in one of those really entertaining type of 0-0 games.

Shots 13-11 Edmonton in the 2nd period

3rd period

Pittsburgh gets a third power play early but can’t score. Then a makeshift post-PP line of Hagelin-Sheahan-Reaves goes to work in the o-zone, some great cycling and work, Ian Cole crashes down and hits Leon Draisaitl keeping the puck in. Reaves also wins a puck back and drops back for Cole who uses a Sheahan screen in front of Talbot to wrist in the game’s first goal.

Time ticks down but the Pens can’t quite get out free as Connor McDavid makes a phenomenal play catching up to a loose puck and ripping a shot from the left side in, possibly ramping up the stick of Chad Ruhwedel but still. Putting on the jets to catch up to this is special stuff.

Shots end up 14-8 Pittsburgh in the period and 40-29 in the game overall, but it’s 1-1 where it counts on the scoreboard.


McDavid and Crosby on the ice for an exhilarating shift of trading chances but the goalies are up to the challenge.

The next shift though, Pittsburgh has Evgeni Malkin and Phil Kessel and Edmonton has...Milan Lucic and Oscar Klefbom. Advantage: Pens. Game. Set. Match.

Some Thoughts

  • Two times within the first 10 minutes of the game, Malkin paired perfect chances for Bryan Rust to shoot from a prime position with a lane to do so. Once he tried to force a pass back to Malkin. Once he tried to drive wide and got tripped up. It’s nice to see Rust isn’t too “shoot first” this season, but he does need to shoot sometimes.
  • Down to 5 defensemen for most of the game, felt like good old times.
  • Less a man, that means more time for Letang who ended up with 27:58 on the night, and the first official Kris Letang injury scare of the season, when he blocked a shot in the top of the foot in the 3rd period. He was hobbled and had to go down the runway, but his exit, fortunately, was brief and he was back on the ice before long.
  • Pretty good game for Sheahan in his Pittsburgh debut. The assist on the first goal, where really the more impressive move by him was planting that big 6’3, 215 pound frame in front of the net, and some good cycling and defensive play all night. He’s not a game-breaker, but looks as advertised to be a pretty good skater and a decent enough player all around, won more faceoffs than he lost.
  • The ever-resent McDavid vs. Crosby battle bubbled on the surface. Crosby had 4 SOG and seemed to be shooting more than normal at even. McDavid had a few looks himself with the amazing goal. In OT Sid raced past McD and tried a modified one-hand backhand shot like he scored against Buffalo last season, but sadly he couldn’t quite get it by Talbot.
  • Solid game for Murray and boy did the Pens need that. Nice to see the skaters in front of him make better efforts away from the puck too.
  • Reaves was a goal away from the Gordie on the night. Was hoping they’d put him out there in OT for a look. (I keed, I keed).

The Pens have one more home game on Thursday against the OTHER star who plays in Western Canada, before heading out towards that part of the world later in the week.