Pens top Caps in shootout, win, 3-2
Phil Kessel beat Braden Holtby in the fourth round of a shootout and the host Pittsburgh Penguins began the defense of their Stanley Cup with a 3-2 victory over the Washington Capitals on Thursday night.
Kessel’s wrist shot over Holtby’s glove was initially ruled no goal, but the call was overturned on replay. Marc-Andre Fleury then stuffed Alex Ovechkin from in close to help the Penguins improve to 5-0 all-time against Washington in season openers.
Fleury finished with 39 saves for Pittsburgh. Patric Hornqvist and Evgeni Malkin scored as the Penguins capped a celebratory night in which they lifted their latest Stanley Cup banner to the rafters by tripping up a familiar rival.
Andre Burakovsky scored twice for Washington, and Holtby made 28 stops but allowed three goals in the shootout.
The Penguins began their 50th season with one final nod to their 49th, as Sidney Crosby capped an electric pregame ceremony by carrying the Stanley Cup onto the ice one last time and placing it on a table at center ice before joining his teammates to watch the banner join others the organization earned in 1991, 1992 and 2009. Crosby, who has a concussion, did not play. The Kings placed Jonathan Quick (lower body) on IR. ... Sabres top-line C Jack Eichel will be out indefinitely after suffering a sprained ankle Wednesday in practice. Coach Dan Bylsma said Eichel will miss “weeks and not days.”