Wild
Penguins
2 - 1 Final - 2OT
  for this game

Zidlicky, Backstrom help Wild top Penguins

Nov 19, 2008 - 3:44 AM By Chris Adamski PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

PITTSBURGH (Ticker) -- In a game that featured only 10 seconds of offense, defenseman Marek Zidlicky won it in a shootout for the Minnesota Wild.

Zidlicky scored in the first round of the bonus format and Niklas Backstrom stopped all three shooters as the Wild handed the Pittsburgh Penguins their first defeat in seven games with a 2-1 triumph on Tuesday.

Backstrom stopped Petr Sykora and captain Sidney Crosby in the shootout and defenseman Alex Goligoski missed the net on his attempt for Pittsburgh, which hasn't lost since it dropped a 4-1 decision to the Phoenix Coyotes on October 30.

"The defense played a strong game tonight," said Backstrom, who improved to 11-3-1 and has stopped all eight shootout attempts against him this season.

"You look at their lineup and look at their players - to keep them to one goal, that's a big effort for us. I think the guys played a good game."

Mikko Koivu scored 7:57 into the first period and Backstrom turned aside 24 shots for Minnesota, which improved to 4-1-0 in its last five games.

The Penguins entered the game 6-0-0 during the month of November, having scored 30 goals in that time. But the Wild have the NHL's best statistical defense, having allowed an average of only two goals per contest. The game was played at a pace decidedly in the Wild's favor, with limited scoring chances.

"You always want to compare yourself against the best teams out there, and you try to get up there," Backstrom said. "Your team gets confidence when you beat them and you also get some confidence in tight games when you beat good teams."

Penguins' superstars Crosby and Evgeni Malkin were both held scoreless for only the second time this season. It was also only the second time Evgeni Malkin did not have at least a goal or an assist during a game this season. He had a career-high 13 game points streak snapped.

"Probably of the top five players in the world, those two guys are in the top five," Wild defenseman Kim Johnsson said. "Whenever you can play well against them, you kind of feel good.

I felt as a whole team, I think we played really, really strong against them. We gave them no time. We had talked about that before the game. We gave them no time with the puck and we played well."

The Wild took the first lead of the game - but it lasted all of 10 seconds.

Koivu scored a peculiar goal, his third, by "losing" a faceoff to Mike Zigomanis 7:57 into the first period. The Finn hit the puck first when the puck was dropped between the two in the left circle, but flipped it off the lineman's leg. It bounced back to the dot, where Zigomanis played it back toward his own net.

The puck took a few strange bounces and it slid through Sabourin's pads.

"I'm trying to get the puck back as quick as I can," Zigomanis said. "That's what I'm there for and I didn't mean to play it into my net, but all you can do is go back and get the next one and keep winning them.

"I could probably sit there with a hundred pucks and fire backhands (and no have that happen)."

The Penguins tied it 10 seconds later when Matt Cooke scored his second goal in three games, slamming home a rebound of Jordan Staal's shot from the high slot past Backstrom.

"We were playing against a team that doesn't take chances," Penguins coach Michel Therrien said. "They played really well defensively. We had chances to put the puck in the net. But we were capable of playing that style of hockey. We didn't give up many scoring chances.

"The first goal was a bad break; other than that, I thought it was a solid defensive performance."

What followed was nearly 47 minutes of scoreless hockey and four of five shooters being unsuccessful in shootout attempts - which was all right with the Wild, because the only one who converted was Zidlicky, the first Minnesota player to compete in the bonus format.

"A shootout is just like 50/50," said Zidlicky, who improved to 3-for-8 in his career during shootouts and enjoyed his second shootout-deciding goal this season. "Sometimes you score, sometimes you don't. I was just able to score today."






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    Wild 2, Penguins 1  Final - 2OTNov 18 10:11 PM


  • NHL
    FINAL IN SHOOTOUT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    MINNESOTA 1 0 0 0 (1) 2
    PITTSBURGH 1 0 0 0 (0) 1 FINAL IN SHOOTOUT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MIN - MIKKO KOIVU 3 (UNASSISTED) 7:57
    PIT - MATT COOKE 2 (JORDAN STAAL, ROB SCUDERI) 8:07
    2ND PRD: NONE
    3RD PRD: NONE
    OT: NONE
    SO: PIT - PETR SYKORA (SAVED), ALEX GOLIGOSK

    Wild 2, Penguins 1  Final - 2OTNov 18 9:43 PM


  • NHL
    END OF OT 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    --- --- --- --- -----
    MINNESOTA 1 0 0 0 1
    PITTSBURGH 1 0 0 0 1 END OF OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MIN - MIKKO KOIVU 3 (UNASSISTED) 7:57
    PIT - MATT COOKE 2 (JORDAN STAAL, ROB SCUDERI) 8:07
    2ND PRD: NONE
    3RD PRD: NONE
    OT: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD OT TOTAL
    ---

    Nov 18 9:39 PM
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    END OF THE 3RD GOING INTO OT
    1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MINNESOTA 1 0 0 1
    PITTSBURGH 1 0 0 1 GOING INTO OT
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MIN - MIKKO KOIVU 3 (UNASSISTED) 7:57
    PIT - MATT COOKE 2 (JORDAN STAAL, ROB SCUDERI) 8:07
    2ND PRD: NONE
    3RD PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MIN 9 8 6

    Nov 18 9:31 PM
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    Wild 1, Penguins 1  3rd - 4:44Nov 18 9:25 PM
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  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MINNESOTA 1 0 1
    PITTSBURGH 1 0 1 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MIN - MIKKO KOIVU 3 (UNASSISTED) 7:57
    PIT - MATT COOKE 2 (JORDAN STAAL, ROB SCUDERI) 8:07
    2ND PRD: NONE
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MIN 9 8 17
    PIT 9

    Nov 18 8:39 PM
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  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MINNESOTA 1 1
    PITTSBURGH 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: MIN - ANDREW BRUNETTE 7 (UNASSISTED) 7:57
    PIT - MATT COOKE 2 (JORDAN STAAL, ROB SCUDERI) 8:07
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    MIN 9 9
    PIT 9

    Nov 18 7:43 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 1
    PITTSBURGH 1
    1ST PRD: PIT - MATT COOKE 2 (JORDAN STAAL, ROB SCUDERI) 8:07

    Wild 1, Penguins 1  1st - 11:53Nov 18 7:25 PM


  • NHL
    MINNESOTA 1
    PITTSBURGH 0
    1ST PRD: MIN - ANDREW BRUNETTE 7 (UNASSISTED) 7:57

    Wild 1, Penguins 0  1st - 12:03Nov 18 7:25 PM
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