Friday night’s NHL action featured a small slate, as just two games were played. Both the Arizona Coyotes and the Washington Capitals opened up the season, while the New Jersey Devils looked to improve to 2-0 and the Pittsburgh Penguins attempted to bounce back from an opening night loss.
Arizona downed New Jersey 4-3 in a shootout at the Prudential Center. The Coyotes jumped out to a 2-0 advantage in the second period thanks to goals from defensemen Matt Dumba and Sean Durzi.
The Devils responded with all three of their goals in the second frame, as Jesper Bratt tallied two goals an assist.
After Nick Schmaltz, who enters his sixth season in Arizona, knotted the contest at three apiece in the third period, the Coyotes cruised to a 2-0 win in the shootout.
Goaltender Karel Vejmelka stopped 33 of the 36 New Jersey shot attempts, including 16 straight to keep the Coyotes’ hopes alive.
In Washington D.C., a much different contest awaited, as the Pittsburgh Penguins, who dropped an opening night contest to the Chicago Blackhawks, secured a 4-0 victory over the Capitals.
Pittsburgh tallied three second period goals, but unlike New Jersey, ended up on the right side of the finish.
Sidney Crosby netted two goals in the win, while Evgeni Malkin and Reilly Smith recorded one goal apiece.
Malkin earned the first star, adding in three assists in the win.
While Pittsburgh amassed 16 more shot attempts than Washington, netminder Tristan Jarry stopped all 19 shots faced.
Pittsburgh returns to action at home against Calgary on Saturday, while Arizona, New Jersey, and Washington hit the ice on Monday.
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