Blackwood makes 38 saves in Devils win against Penguins
- Mackenzie Blackwood made 38 saves to help the New Jersey Devils to a 2-1 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Prudential Center on Friday.
- Blackwood, making his third straight start, won in his first career game against the Penguins.
“[Blackwood] was big, particularly down the stretch,” Devils coach John Hynes said. “We don’t win the game if Blackwood doesn’t have the performance that he has. It’s nice to see him being consistent in his game and making saves when we need them, and he was a big difference in the game.”
- Travis Zajac and Blake Coleman scored for the Devils (6-8-4), who are 4-4-2 in their past 10 games.
“The Penguins pushed hard; we didn’t want to spend quite that much time in our [defensive] zone but all four lines and three sets of D played well and obviously [Blackwood] was an absolute stud,” Coleman said. “Everybody bought in to the little battles, the blocked shots, and it was evident.”
- Jack Johnson scored, and Matt Murray made 19 saves for the Penguins (10-7-2), who are 4-2-2 in the past eight games and 0-1-1 in two games without center Sidney Crosby.
- Pittsburgh’s leading scorer is out at least six weeks after having surgery Thursday to repair a core muscle injury.
“It’s tough,” Penguins forward Jake Guentzel said. “We played really well and did not get the bounces. On most nights if we play like that I think we’ll come out on top. It’s a good thing we got another one (Saturday against the Toronto Maple Leafs) to get back at it.”
- Blackwood was particularly strong after the Penguins pulled Murray for an extra attacker with 1:07 remaining and the Devils holding a 2-1 lead.
- He made two saves on Guentzel in a span of six seconds, and another on Evgeni Malkin with 16 seconds left.
- The Devils blocked 20 shots, three by Jesper Bratt.
“Everyone was battling out there, guys were getting into shot lanes, blocking shots and getting their sticks in lanes,” Blackwood said. “There was kind of a little bit of mayhem in the end, but we were able to hold that one down and get the two points.”
NHL Highlights | Penguins vs. Devils – Nov. 15, 2019
- Penguins forward Alex Galchenyuk had an assist for his 300th NHL point in his 500th NHL game.
- He is the first member of the 2012 NHL Draft class to play 500 games. …
- The Penguins were also missing defenseman Kris Letang and forward Patric Hornqvist, both out with a lower-body injury. Letang has missed four straight games and Hornqvist five. …
- Penguins forward Nick Bjugstad sustained a lower-body injury in the second period and will be re-evaluated Saturday, Sullivan said. …
- Forward Taylor Hall, who had four shots on goal in 17:19, will play his 200th game with the Devils on Saturday. …
- Blackwood could make his fourth straight start, according to Hynes.
Sources & Credits: NHL.com; NJ Devils, PIT Penguins