PITTSBURGH (AP)Penguins goalie Tristan Jarry is well aware he’s struggled in shootouts this season.
Jarry took a significant step forward against the Florida Panthers.
Jeff Carter scored the winning goal, Jarry made the deciding save in a shootout and Pittsburgh beat the Panthers 3-2 on Thursday night.
”It was exciting,” Jarry said. ”It was something I wanted to get better at. I wanted to win.”
Jarry gave an emphatic fist pump and rushed to the bench to celebrate with teammates after stopping Anton Lundell to win it. Jarry also denied Aleksander Barkov and former Penguin Patric Hornqvist.
Jarry improved to 1-3 in shootouts this season. He credited additional film study and breakaway work in practice after dropping consecutive shootout decisions against Chicago and Minnesota.
Entering the game, Jarry had allowed seven goals on 10 shots in tiebreakers. He made three saves on four shots against the Panthers.
”He’s not a guy that has had many shootouts in his career,” Penguins assistant coach Todd Reirden said. ”It’s a learning process for him, but we’re doing everything we possibly can to give him the tools to have success. We’re really glad to see him get rewarded.”
Jonathan Huberdeau scored in the tiebreaker for the Panthers, who lost their third straight after opening the season with 10 wins in 11 games.
Bryan Rust also converted in the shootout for Florida, and goalie Sergei Bobrovsky stopped Jake Guentzel and Kris Letang.
Evan Rodrigues scored his fourth goal and Teddy Blueger his third in regulation for Pittsburgh. Jarry made 36 saves for the Penguins, who won for the second time in seven games. Pittsburgh has 13 wins and points in 17 of the last 20 meetings against the Panthers dating to Dec. 20, 2014.
Barkov scored his ninth in regulation, and Frank Vatrano netted his third for Florida. Bobrovsky made 31 saves.
”It looked like stretches where we were doing the right things and we’re buzzing,” Panthers interim coach Andrew Brunette said. ”Then we kind of get a little sloppy.”
Pittsburgh killed off a 4-on-3 power play in the final 1:31 of overtime.
Barkov tied it 2-all at 2:30 of the third period when he beat Jarry with a glove-side wrist shot. Barkov has a point in each of his last eight games.
Anthony Duclair appeared to score the go-ahead goal for Florida at 15:15 of the third, but Pittsburgh challenged and the goal was wiped out after a replay review because of an offside call.
”It’s a big turning point,” Reirden said. ”It would’ve hurt to give up that goal.”
Blueger scored the opening goal at 13:37 of the first. Penguins defenseman Mike Matheson, who spent five seasons with the Panthers, earned a secondary assist.
Vatrano answered for the Panthers at 16:55. He finished a 2-on-1 with Lundell and scored on a blocker-side wrist shot. Sam Reinhart, who had an assist, has points in nine of his last 12 games.
Rodrigues gave Pittsburgh a 2-1 lead entering the third period when he scored on a partial breakaway at 17:53 of the second.
Pittsburgh played a fourth straight overtime game for the first time since April 2014. The Penguins are 2-0-2 in their last four overtimes.
Overall, six of Pittsburgh’s 12 games have gone past regulation.
Penguins defensemen Marcus Pettersson and Chad Ruhwedel returned after missing three games in the NHL’s COVID-19 protocol. But Pettersson left in the first period following a hard hit from Owen Tippett and did not return. Reirden did not have an update after the game.
Sidney Crosby, Brian Dumoulin and head coach Mike Sullivan all missed their fourth games for Pittsburgh, still in the COVID-19 protocol.
Bobrovsky returned for Florida after missing three games because of an injury. He served as a backup during Tuesday’s loss against New Jersey. In seven starts, he’s allowed more than two goals just once, in a season-opening overtime win against Pittsburgh.
”It was definitely nice to compete with the guys,” Bobrovsky said. ”I thought it was a great point for us.”
Hornqvist played in Pittsburgh for the first time since he was traded to the Panthers on Sept. 4, 2020, for Matheson and forward Colton Sceviour.
Hornqvist spent six seasons in Pittsburgh, from 2014-20, and helped the Penguins win back-to-back Stanley Cups in 2016 and ’17. He recorded 132 goals and 264 points in 407 regular-season games, along with 22 goals and 38 points in 66 playoff contests. Only Crosby and Evgeni Malkin scored more goals at PPG Paints Arena during that time than Hornqvist, who had 71.
Hornqvist, who scored Pittsburgh’s Stanley Cup-clinching goal in 2017, has 15 goals in 58 games with Florida.
Panthers: Close a four-game road trip Saturday at Tampa Bay.
Penguins: Visit Ottawa on Saturday. Pittsburgh plays five of its next six and 11 of 14 on the road.
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