Photo: Charles LeClaire - USA TODAY Sports

Kessel, Penguins rout the Sabres 5-1

Alex Nylander finds the net for Buffalo in the loss

September 26, 2018 - 7:16 pm
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Phil Kessel scored twice and Matt Murray made 21 saves on Wednesday night as the Pittsburgh Penguins rout the Buffalo Sabres, 5-1 to hand Buffalo its fourth straight preseason loss. The only Buffalo goal came courtesy of Alexander Nylander in the second period.

Kessel's first two goals of the preseason came in a span of 2:31 in the opening period, giving Pittsburgh a 2-0 advantage heading into the second period. Kessel started the scoring by blazing past defenseman Taylor Fedun and beating Linus Ullmark on a clean breakaway. Moments later, Kessel was left alone on the near wall and took advantage, ripping a shot into the Buffalo net for the 2-0 lead. 

Nylander cut the deficit to 2-1 nearly seven minutes into the second period as Marco Scandella faked a shot and tipped a pass to Jason Pominville. Pominville then found Nylander in the right faceoff circle, and the 20-year-old fired his wrist shot over the glove hand of Murray for his first of, what has been, a strong preseason campaign. However, just 32-seconds later, Penguins defenseman Kris Letang responded with a point shot that found its way through traffic and past Ullmark. 

Later in the period, Derek Brassard added a power play goal and Matt Cullen put home a Bryan Rust rebound, giving the Penguins a comfortable 5-1 lead. 

Johan Larsson left the game in the second period with a lower-body injury, but head coach Phil Housley didn't offer a timetable on his return. Rasmus Ristolainen also came out of Wednesday's game with an upper-body injury, however, it is not thought to be serious.
 

GAME SUMMARY
 

Goal Summary:

First Period:

BUF: NONE
PIT: 17:23 - Phil Kessel (1) (Unassisted); 19:54 - Phil Kessel (2) (Evgeni Malkin, Carl Hagelin)

Second Period:

BUF: 6:50 - Alexander Nylander (1) (Jason Pominville, Marco Scandella)
PIT: 7:22 - Kris Letang (2) (Patric Hornqvist, Sidney Crosby); 16:54 - Derek Brassard PPG (1) (Jake Guentzel, Dominik Simon); 17:07 - Matt Cullen (1) (Bryan Rust, Olli Maata)

Third Period:

BUF: NONE
PIT: NONE

 

Penalty Summary:

First Period:

BUF: 11:45 - Matt Tennyson (Hooking - 2 min.)
PIT: NONE

Second Period:

BUF: 16:26 - Nicholas Baptiste (Slashing - 2 min.)
PIT: NONE

Third Period:

BUF: NONE
PIT: NONE


Shots on Goal:

BUF: 22 (5, 10, 7)
PIT: 32 (11, 10, 11)


Power Plays:

BUF: 0 for 0 (0%)
PIT: 1 for 2 (50%)


Goalies:

BUF: Linus Ullmark - 27 saves
PIT: Matt Murray - 21 saves 


What's Next:

The Sabres close out the preseason in Oshawa, Ontario against the New York Islanders on Friday at 7 p.m. Dan Dunleavy and Rob Ray will have the call of the game on WGR. The regular season begins on Thursday, October 4 against the Boston Bruins at KeyBank Center.

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