Mike Halford

Torts: Malkin acted ‘like he was dead’ after Jenner knee (Video)

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John Tortorella wasn’t happy with how Evgeni Malkin reacted to a Boone Jenner hit on Monday night.

Midway through the second period of Pittsburgh’s 5-2 win over Columbus, Jenner was given a two-minute tripping minor for kneeing Malkin, as seen in the above video.

Malkin looked to be hurt on the play, but didn’t miss much time and finished with 24 shifts for over 20 minutes of ice time, scoring twice.

When asked if he thought Jenner might face supplemental discipline for the incident, Torts had this to say:

Transcript of the key quote:

“He got up, didn’t he? It was like he was dead, and then he’s out there the next shift.”

Tortorella, you’ll remember, has a bit of history with Malkin.

At the tail end of the 2012 regular season, Tortorella, then coaching the Rangers, sounded off after former Penguins defenseman Brooks Orpik took out Derek Stepan with a knee.

But instead of going after Orpik, Torts went after Malkin and Pittsburgh captain Sidney Crosby.

“That’s one of the most arrogant organizations in sports,” he said, per NHL.com. “They whine about this stuff all the time. It’s ridiculous.

“But they’ll whine about something else over there, won’t they? Starting with their two [expletive] stars.”

Tortorella was fined $20,000 for his remarks.

Crosby-less Pens snap losing skid with win over Jackets

Phil Kessel
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A night of firsts at Consol on Monday.

New Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan got his first win since taking over for Mike Johnston, rookie netminder Matt Murray got his first NHL win, David Warsofsky scored his first goal of the year and Phil Kessel had his first multi-goal performance on home ice as the Pens beat the Blue Jackets 5-2 — their first win after five straight losses.

“If you continue to believe and stay the course, the results start to come,” Sullivan said following the game, per the Penguins’ Twitter.

Pittsburgh certainly got results tonight.

Malkin matched Kessel with a pair of goals, and Murray — a standout with the club’s AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton — got his first big league victory in just his second-ever start. He and Jeff Zatkoff have been handling netminding duties with Marc-Andre Fleury (concussion) out injured, and the 21-year-old Murray made 20 saves on Monday, with seven coming in the final frame.

As for Columbus, this pretty much sums it up:

Alex Wennberg and Boone Jenner scored the goals, but the Jackets could only muster 22 total shots to Pittsburgh’s 35. It was an especially quiet night from two of the club’s veteran leaders, as Brandon Dubinsky and Scott Hartnell both failed to puck a single puck on net.

Rookie netminder Joonas Korpisalo finished 30 saves on 34 shots for his third loss of the season.

Flyers rally from three-goal deficit to sweep season series with Blues

Shayne Gostisbehere, Jakub Voracek
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The Philadelphia Flyers recorded one of their best wins of the season on Monday night, climbing out from a 3-0 hole to beat the Blues in front of the Wells Fargo faithful.

Wayne Simmonds led the way with a pair of goals — setting the stage for Evgeny Medvedev‘s game-winner — while rookie phenom Shayne Gostisbehere continued his fine run of play to give the Flyers their fourth win in the last six games.

Chris VandeVelde scored the other marker for Philly, while Robby Fabbri, Kevin Shattenkirk and Magnus Paajarvi netted for the Blues.

As the 4-3 scoreline suggests, this game had plenty of fireworks and momentum swings.

The first swing belonged to St. Louis, who looked to have things under control following an opening 20 minutes in which they scored twice, and out-shot the Flyers 15-8. After Paajarvi extended the lead to 3-0 midway through the frame, it looked as though the Blues were ready to cruise.

But that’s when things got interesting.

VandeVelde scored less than a minute after Paajarvi and, just over two minutes later, Simmonds scored his first.

The Flyers carried that momentum over to the third, when Simmonds scored again, on a Jakub Voracek re-direct just 51 seconds in. The teams traded chances from there and OT seemed a possibility, until Medvedev scored with just over three minutes left.

As mentioned off the top, there were several quality performances from the Flyers tonight, but perhaps none as impressive as Gostisbehere’s.

(Ghost has played a grand total of 18 games, in case you were curious).

The Flyers are now 10-4-4 since he was inserted into the lineup from AHL Lehigh Valley.

As for the Blues… well, it’s safe to suggest head coach Ken Hitchcock will be bitterly disappointed with the end result. St. Louis didn’t get a single point from a game it was leading 3-0 after 30 minutes, and had its rather modest three-game winning streak snapped in the process.

Red-hot Caps win sixth straight, down ‘Canes 2-1

Dmitry Orlov, Alex Ovechkin, Evgeny Kuznetsov
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It was probably the least convincing of the bunch but hey, a sixth straight win is a sixth straight win.

That’s what the Washington Capitals accomplished on Monday night in Carolina, squeaking out a 2-1 victory to give themselves an NHL-best 25-6-2 record.

Though they were out-shot and at times outplayed by the ‘Canes, the Caps were able to secure all three points thanks to goals from Michael Latta and Jason Chimera. Washington also received some quality netminding from Phillip Grubauer, who stopped 31 of 32 shots in a rare night off for workhorse No. 1 goalie Braden Holtby.

For the ‘Canes, Kris Versteeg scored the lone goal — but what a goal it was:

Tonight’s defeat will be a tough one to swallow for Carolina, who came in on a nice streak of its own — the ‘Canes were 5-2-1 in their previous eight games, and had scored 23 times in their last five games.

As for the Caps, they’ll head into the break as the hottest team in the league, and will look to push their winning streak to seven when they host Montreal on Saturday.

Carolina is next in action on Saturday as well, when it takes on the Devils in New Jersey.

Duck hunt: Isles chase Andersen with three goals on 11 shots

Frederik Andersen
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Frederik Andersen‘s night in Brooklyn is over early.

Andersen, who got the start for Anaheim on Monday against the Isles, allowed three goals on 11 shots in the opening frame and was replaced by John Gibson to start the second period.

All three of New York’s goals came in a five-minute span at the end of the frame. Cal Clutterbuck scored at 14:54 to equalize Carl Hagelin‘s opener and, not long after, Travis Hamonic scored to make it 2-1.

Brock Nelson scored his 12th of the season to give the Isles a two-goal advantage with just 17 seconds left on the clock.

Tonight’s outing is a tough development for Andersen, who missed a bunch of time earlier in the month with an illness.

That illness forced the Ducks to recall Gibson from AHL San Diego, and allowed Gibson to run with the starting gig — which eventually forced the club to keep their prized goalie prospect at the NHL level, and waive (and eventually demote) veteran Anton Khudobin.