Saturday, October 4, 2008

How Swede it is - Penguins defeat Senators in overtime, 4-3

The Pittsburgh Penguins defeated the Ottawa Senators 4-3 in O.T. in Stockholm, Sweden, in the second game on the NHL's opening day (in Europe, while the preseason continues back in North America).

Last season's Eastern Conference Champions were on the board first with Tyler Kennedy's goal just 40 seconds into the first period (Jordan Staal assisted - incidentally, his brother Marc also took part in the European festivities today, playing with the Rangers in Prague; a winning day for the Staal family).

It was tit-for-tat from there on out, as Ottawa's Shean Donovan tied the game at 9:13 in the first, followed by a shorthanded, unassisted Evgeni Malkin goal in the second to make it 2-1 Penguins.

Dany Heatley tied the game nine minutes later on the only power play goal of the day (in which defenseman Filip Kuba made his second assist), before Ottawa's Jason Spezza brought the Senators into the lead for the first time in the game, with his shorthanded goal (he also assisted on Heatley's goal).

Pittsburgh's Robert Scudari (with help from Sidney Crosby, and, um, Satan - Miroslav Satan, that is) brought the Penguins back into the game early in the third period, which took both teams into overtime.

It appeared that the game would head into the shootout, until Tyler Kennedy nicely bookended the game with the game-winning, unassisted goal, with just 25 seconds left of sudden death.

Pittsburgh's Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 32 of 35 shots, while Swiss goalie Martin Gerber stopped 26 of 30 for Ottawa.

The only Swedish player between both teams, Ottawa captain Daniel Alfredsson (RW), was a minus-3 for the day, and without a point - the worst showing statistically of any player.

Feel free to correct my Swedish if necessary, but it's easy to imagine Alfredsson screaming *Fan anamma!* Which I'm ok with, as a closet Buffalo Sabres supporter (except when they're playing the Sharks - when all bets are off).
The teams faceoff again in Stockholm tomorrow.

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