ShareThis Page

Penguins' stable of stars overcome Connor McDavid, Oilers in overtime

Jonathan Bombulie
| Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, 9:51 p.m.
Penguins goaltender Matt Murray makes a blocker save on the Oilers' Mark Letestu in the second period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Penguins goaltender Matt Murray makes a blocker save on the Oilers' Mark Letestu in the second period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Oilers goaltender Cam Talbot stops the Penguins' Jake Guentzel in the first period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Oilers goaltender Cam Talbot stops the Penguins' Jake Guentzel in the first period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
The Penguins' Ryan Reaves fights with the Oilers' Darnell Nurse in the first period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins' Ryan Reaves fights with the Oilers' Darnell Nurse in the first period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Penguins goaltender Matt Murray makes a save on the Oilers' Milan Lucic in the second period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Penguins goaltender Matt Murray makes a save on the Oilers' Milan Lucic in the second period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
The Oilers' Connor McDavid works in the Penguins zone in the second period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Oilers' Connor McDavid works in the Penguins zone in the second period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
The Penguins' Evgeni Malkin celebrates with Phil Kessel after Kessel's game winning goal in overtime to beat the Oilers 2-1Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017 at PPG Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins' Evgeni Malkin celebrates with Phil Kessel after Kessel's game winning goal in overtime to beat the Oilers 2-1Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017 at PPG Arena.
Penguins defenseman Ian Cole celebrates his goal against the Oilers in the third period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Penguins defenseman Ian Cole celebrates his goal against the Oilers in the third period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
The Penguins and Oilers slap their sticks on the boards after a fight between Ryan Reaves and Darnell Nurse in the first period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins and Oilers slap their sticks on the boards after a fight between Ryan Reaves and Darnell Nurse in the first period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
The Penguins' Riley Sheahan watches as Ian Cole's shot beats Oilers goaltender Cam Talbot in the third period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins' Riley Sheahan watches as Ian Cole's shot beats Oilers goaltender Cam Talbot in the third period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Penguins goaltender Matt Murray makes a save against the Oilers in the second period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
Penguins goaltender Matt Murray makes a save against the Oilers in the second period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
The Penguins celebrate Ian Cole's goal against the Oilers in the third period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins celebrate Ian Cole's goal against the Oilers in the third period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
The Oilers' Adam Larsson is call for elbowing on the Penguins' Jake Guentzel in the third period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Oilers' Adam Larsson is call for elbowing on the Penguins' Jake Guentzel in the third period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
The Penguins' Sidney Crosby takes control of the puck from the Oilers' Adam Larsson in the first period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins' Sidney Crosby takes control of the puck from the Oilers' Adam Larsson in the first period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
The Penguins' Riley Sheahan celebrates Ian Cole's goal against the Oilers in the third period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.
Chaz Palla | Tribune-Review
The Penguins' Riley Sheahan celebrates Ian Cole's goal against the Oilers in the third period Tuesday, Oct. 24, 2017, at PPG Paints Arena.

In a matchup between Sidney Crosby and Connor McDavid, the game's two pre-eminent players, the Penguins proved their star power goes a little further down the lineup card than Edmonton's does.

Evgeni Malkin.

Phil Kessel.

Especially Matt Murray.

Malkin and Kessel teamed up for the winning goal in overtime, and Murray made 29 saves, including the most spectacular stop of his young NHL career, to lead the Penguins to a 2-1 victory over the Oilers on Tuesday night.

“Whenever your goalie does that, you want to get a win for him,” Kessel said.

The Penguins are 6-3-1, including a 3-0 record in the game immediately following a regulation loss this season. The Oilers fell to 2-6. The Penguins are 11-0-3 in their past 14 meetings with the Oilers.

Murray's highlight-reel save came on the first power play of a scoreless game midway through the second period.

A McDavid pass from the right half-wall hit Milan Lucic in front and caromed right to Mark Letestu on the backdoor for a shot into an empty cage.

Murray filled it.

He dove to his right and thrust his stick forward, stopping the shot with the bottom of the shaft, just a few inches above the blade.

There was a method to Murray's madness.

“You're just trying to make a read, I think,” Murray said. “If he's got time, more than likely, he's going to try to raise it. If he's just trying to get it off, it's going to go on the ice.

“He had all the time in the world, so I figured he was going to try to at least get it in the top part of the net. I tried to get my stick over there, and I got a bit lucky.”

Murray credited teammates for keeping the puck out of the net on the goal-mouth scramble that followed. Brian Dumoulin blocked a Lucic rebound bid and Carl Hagelin tipped a subsequent McDavid attempt up over the crossbar.

“Just an unreal sequence,” Murray said. “That's the kind of compete we need on the penalty kill.”

When Ian Cole scored past a Riley Sheahan screen early in the second period, it looked like Murray was on his way to a shutout win.

Then McDavid made his presence known.

He raced up the left wing to track down a diagonal pass and fired a perfectly placed shot to the top-right corner of the net, tying the score with 2 minutes, 53 seconds to go.

“He doesn't need many chances,” Dumoulin said. “He's a guy that score pretty much at will.”

Dumoulin and Kris Letang were the Penguins players tasked most frequently with defending McDavid. Up front, coach Mike Sullivan went with a head-to-head matchup with Crosby most of the time but also mixed in some Malkin and Sheahan.

Crosby, who had five shots on goal, did not have a point, continuing an interesting pattern in his matchups with McDavid. In all three meetings, McDavid has found the scoresheet, Crosby hasn't, and the Penguins have won the game.

In this case, they won on Kessel's goal 42 seconds into overtime.

Malkin made his way up the left wing and passed to Kessel, who had beaten his man in the middle of the ice. He wristed a shot past goalie Cam Talbot's blocker.

“It feels good to get one in there,” Kessel said. “I've had some chances, and they haven't gone in.”

On the day the Penguins found out they'd be without center Carter Rowney for a minimum of four weeks because of a broken hand, they lost defenseman Justin Schultz to injury in the first period. Sullivan said Schultz has been diagnosed with a concussion.

Jonathan Bombulie is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach him at jbombulie@tribweb.com or via Twitter at @BombulieTrib.

TribLIVE commenting policy

You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.

We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.

While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.

We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers

We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.

We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.

We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.

We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.