Puljujarvi scores twice, Nugent-Hopkins nets winner as Oilers down Jets in pre-season

Jesse Puljujarvi continues to cement his position as Connor McDavid’s full-time linemate.

Puljujarvi had a pair of goals as the Edmonton Oilers snapped a two-game skid in pre-season play, defeating the visiting Winnipeg Jets 4-3 on Saturday.

“His confidence grew all of last year and he has come into camp in great shape,” said Oilers head coach Dave Tippett of the 23-year-old Puljujarvi. “He is confident playing with Connor. He is moving. He shoots the puck and goes to the net.

“When you are in front of the net you are going to find some goals, and that is what he did tonight.”

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored the game-winning goal with 1:56 remaining in the third period to break a 3-3 deadlock. Devin Shore also scored for the Oilers (3-1-1).

WATCH l Draisaitl’s feed to Nugent-Hopkins lifts Oilers past Jets:

Draisaitl’s feed to Nugent-Hopkins lifts Oilers past Jets

1 hour ago

Edmonton’s Ryan Nugent-Hopkins buried the backhand feed from Leon Draisaitl to make it a 4-3 victory over Winnipeg at home. 0:51

Kyle Connor, Mark Scheifele and Josh Morrissey replied for the Jets (1-1-1), who suffered their first loss in regulation in pre-season.

Down 3-1 in the third, Winnipeg fought back to make it a one-goal game with 8:24 left as Declan Chisholm sent a pass through a defenceman’s legs to allow a back-door tap-in by Scheifele.

The Jets then tied it up a couple of minutes later as Morrissey was left alone in front to bang home a pass from Evgeny Svechnikov.

“You want to win every game you play. I don’t care if it’s exhibition or not, so you get back in that game and you want a better result,” said Jets head coach Paul Maurice. “I think those D pairings are going to be just fine for us, they’re going to work well. Still a real competition for those open jobs on the fourth line and they’re making it tough.”

Edmonton regained the lead with just under two minutes left in the game as Leon Draisaitl stripped a puck and then sent a long backhand pass through traffic to Nugent-Hopkins, who beat Eric Comrie for the winner.

“You have to work to a spot, because even if [Draisaitl] is not looking, he knows that you are there,” Nugent-Hopkins said. “He’ll bring at least two guys to him. That pass at the end, there are maybe a couple of guys in the league who can strip a guy and then make that pass without really looking. Playing with him, you have to know that he is going to be able to do that.”

The Jets took an early lead four minutes into the opening frame after the Oilers allowed an odd-man break on the tail end of their first power play. Edmonton goalie Mikko Koskinen was able to make an initial save on Kristian Vesalainen, but had little chance on the rebound as Connor notched his second of the pre-season.

Edmonton bounced back on their next power play late in the first as Puljujarvi tipped a long Draisaitl shot past Jets netminder Comrie.

After several quality stops by Koskinen, the Oilers surged ahead 3-1 with goals just over two minutes apart.

With seven minutes left in the second period, Shore tipped home a Brendan Perlini shot, which was followed up by Puljujarvi scoring his second of the game and third in exhibition on a booming slap shot.

The Jets are back at it on Sunday as they head to Vancouver to face the Canucks. The Oilers remain home to welcome the Calgary Flames on Monday.

Habs’ top line produces 2 goals in win over Sens

After suffering a 7-2 loss the night before, the Montreal Canadiens notched a 2-1 comeback win Saturday in the second game of a pre-season back-to-back with the Ottawa Senators.

Brendan Gallagher made his return to the ice, skating alongside Nick Suzuki and Tyler Toffoli. Montreal’s top line produced both goals.

Down 1-0, Gallagher levelled the score for the Canadiens with an unassisted goal on the powerplay. The winger intercepted Josh Brown’s clearance and beat Anton Forsberg with a heavy wrist shot.

Suzuki got Montreal’s go-ahead goal early in the third . From the back of the net, Toffoli placed the puck in the slot where the centre took a blocker-side shot to give Montreal the 2-1 lead.

WATCH l Habs edge Sens behind Suzuki’s quick snap:

Habs edge Sens behind Suzuki’s quick snap

38 minutes ago

Nick Suzuki netted Montreal’s final goal in their 2-1 victory over Ottawa on Saturday. 0:47

Forsberg played two periods, allowing one goal on 18 shots. Filip Gustavsson took over in the third period. He stopped four shots but gave up the game-winning goal.

The Senators opened the score for a second straight night. Tim Stutzle redirected Evan Brannstrom’s shot past Cayden Primeau to give Ottawa a first-period lead.

Primeau played all three periods, making 19 saves on Ottawa’s 20 shots.

Laurent Dauphin was inches away from adding an insurance goal late in the third period. The puck bounced off the Montreal winger and slid all the way to the right post before being knocked away by Gustavsson.

Entering their final week of pre-season, the Canadiens head to Toronto to take on the Maple Leafs on Oct. 5. They return to Montreal to host the Sens once again on Oct. 7.

The Senators return to Ottawa to host the Maple Leafs on Oct. 4 before finishing their pre-season in Montreal.

View original article here Source