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The Penguins Beat the Oilers 2 -1 in OT – Pittsburgh Penguins – PenguinPoop Blog

The Penguins Beat the Oilers 2 -1 in OT

Why is it that our Pittsburgh Penguins need adversity before they show up and play a full game? Why do they have to get the stuffing beat out of them before they play some defense? Why do they need to have a defenseman get injured before they show signs of life? But that is what happened last night as the Penguins beat the Edmonton Oilers 2 -1 in over-time.

Edmonton cannot be confused with Tampa Bay right now. Edmonton’s record is 2 -5 -1. They are hardly the class of the west. So, beating them is something the Penguins should do. And even though Edmonton boast last year’s MVP Connor McDavid, the $12.5 million dollar man, and Leon Draisaitl the $8.5 million dollar man, holding the Oilers to 1 goal over 60 minutes and some OT change hardly constitutes a big deal either; they are dead last in the league in goals per game (1.88). The Oilers are struggling right now, so this was a good time to catch them, before they remember how to play.

What was encouraging about this win was how the Penguins played. They did not play soft. They came out and attacked. They assaulted Cam Talbot with 15 shots in the first period and could have easily blown out the Oilers if not for Talbot. They had some very good looks at the net.

During the second period, it was Edmonton’s turn and they threw the kitchen sink at the Penguins, but both Matt Murray and the Penguins team D stood the test. Murray in his usual unflappable style turned away great scoring opportunity after great scoring opportunity, including a miraculous paddle save, swatting a puck out of harm’s way that was ticketed for a wide open back door goal. And despite being knocked for having a slow glove, he flashed the leather on hard open shot to the low corner.

Although the Penguins shooters put more pucks on net (44-30), Edmonton took more shots (65-61). However, the Penguins defense blocked 26 of those shots and between the back pressure they put on the puck and the fort that Murray is, the Penguins gave the Oilers precious little at which to shoot; Edmonton missed the net another 9 times.

The Penguins also responded to the heavy hitting Oilers, nearly matching them in hits; 23 for the Penguins and 26 for the Oilers. On what may not have been the hardest hit of the evening but certainly a more noticeable one, Jake Guentzel, unceremoniously, drove McDavid into the boards and nearly into the benches.

Ian Cole finally broke the ice in this thrilling goaltender’s duel, floating a puck under the crossbar on Talbot’s stick side, after taking a feed from Ryan Reeves. The big Right Winger, fought for the puck along the boards before getting the puck back to Cole. New-comer Riley Sheahan started the play, getting the puck over to Reaves, before barging to the net and giving Cole a needed screen, blocking Talbot’s view. Carl Hagelin also provided some solid corner work to help Sheahan get the puck to Reaves.

Cole would later go on to help out Murray and temporarily preserve the lead on a scramble in the crease. He dove back into the crease to block a shot and the puck went under his body. Murray scrambled back to try and get the puck himself before Cole would get called for covering the puck in the crease. Both Cole and Murray were the beneficiaries’ of a quick whistle.

McDavid finally got a shot past Murray with only 2:53 to play when he raced in, down the left wing to catch up with a soft dump in and rip the puck high glove side. Ruhwedel tried to provide some back pressure, but McDavid was wide open and got the puck off just before Ruhwedel could get a stick out to block it. That sent the game into overtime.

Last overtime game the Penguins played, Evgeni Malkin was the hero, taking a pass from Phil Kessel to ice that game. Tonight, he returned the favor sending Kessel streaking in down the slot to rip a shot back across Talbot to his stick side as Talbot moved from the stick side post to square up on Kessel.

Justin Schultz update;

Justin Schultz took an elbow to the head, early in the first period. He left the ice and didn’t return. In a post-game interview Mike Sullivan, responding to a question about Schultz said that he sustained a concussion and was going through the concussion protocol. In the preseason and early part of the regular season, the league was cracking down on face-off infractions and slashing penalties to the hands, but apparently it is still open season on head shots.

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8 Comments

  1. Rick Buker's Gravatar Rick Buker
    October 26, 2017 at 1:13 pm | Permalink

    Hey all,

    The Pens called up defenseman Frank Corrado from the Baby Pens.

    He’s a good skater and a decent puck mover. But during his brief two-game stint with the Pens last season, he really struggled in his own end, to the extent that Mike Sullivan only played him around five minutes in the second outing.

    I really hope Sully goes with the bigger, more physical Zach Trotman…especially against a bruising team like the Jets. But given how much we value speed and mobility on the backline, you never know … 🙁

    Rick

    • the Other Rick's Gravatar the Other Rick
      October 26, 2017 at 2:51 pm | Permalink

      Hey Rick,

      I was going to do a full pre-game post, but am not having much time right now.

      A couple of interesting points to consider going into tonight’s game;

      I don’t know how accurate these data are but I saw somewhere that the Jets are roughly 1.4″ taller than the Pens and 8.2lbs heavier. However, the Jets PIM/G are down from 10:10 last year to 7:08 this year. and their Hits/G are down from 23.2 to 19.7 per game. While their Goals/G are up from 3.00 to 3.14 and their GA/G are up from 3.11 to 3.71. Their SA/G are also up from 31.0 to 34.6.

      So, it would appear that they may be trying to transition to a faster rather than heavier game, but with their GA up so much will they try and stem the tide by reverting to their heavy game from last year?

      Another interesting point is that their goalie situation is similar to the Pens, their back is not getting the job done and they are going into a back-to-back series tonight. They draw us on the front end and CBJ on the back end. Which team do they fear more; us or CBJ? Which team do they throw their back-up to the wolves? Or do they play their no.1 in both games?

      Just some stuff to chew in while waiting for the start of the game.

    • the Other Rick's Gravatar the Other Rick
      October 26, 2017 at 2:54 pm | Permalink

      Oh and Rick,

      I fear Corrado will get the call but want Trotman. I am hoping that since Trotman got more looks during the preseason and was called up first that he gets the call.

  2. Rick Buker's Gravatar Rick Buker
    October 25, 2017 at 3:06 pm | Permalink

    Hey all,

    Totally shifting gears, how ’bout those Vegas Golden Knights! They’re 7-1, including last night’s 4-2 victory over the Blackhawks. Yes, the same ‘Hawks team that beat us 10-1.

    To put that in perspective, the 1974-75 Capitals won a grand total of 8 games their inaugural season.

    Given that the Golden Knights’ possession numbers aren’t very good, I’m sure there’s a smoke-and-mirrors element to their unbelievable start. But they also selected their share of underrated (and good) hockey players, guys like William Karlsson and Oscar Lindberg. Of course, they’ve got Nealer and Engo and Flower, too.

    I would expect the magic dust to wear off reasonably soon. But it’s a great story so far.

    Rick

  3. Rick Buker's Gravatar Rick Buker
    October 25, 2017 at 9:41 am | Permalink

    Hey Other Rick,

    Great game summary!

    You always want to make a good first impression. And I thought Riley Sheahan played a terrific first game for the Pens. He skated well, contributed at both ends of the ice, won faceoffs (69.2%) and didn’t shy away from the dirty areas. In fact, his screen in front of the net contributed greatly to Cole’s goal.

    In short, he did all the things you want a No. 3 center to do.

    While we’re handing out plaudits, I thought Murray was as sharp as I’ve ever seen him. My word, was he cool and focused. Economical in his movements, yet cat quick when he needed to be. He made tending goal look easy, which it most assuredly isn’t.

    In the “it was fun to see” department, I got a kick out of the way Ryan Reaves gave Kessel a face wash after the game-winning goal. I’m not going to argue that the big guy hasn’t had his struggles, although he’s done better the last handful of games. But he seems to be popular with his ‘mates.

    Schultz’s concussion is a definite downer, although I marvel at how well the Pens play with only five d-men. A tribute to assistant coach Jacques Martin.

    I’m guessing Zach Trotman will fill the gap for now. In a weird, backhanded way, I’m looking forward to seeing him play. He’s got some size (6’3″ 217) and physicality to his game. I think he’ll do a solid job a la Ruhwedel.

    Rick


            

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