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(Thursday, October 3rd)
Final Score: Pittsburgh 3, New Jersey 0
Pittsburgh, PA (SportsNetwork.com) - Marc-Andre Fleury's 27-save shutout helped the Pittsburgh Penguins open the season with a 3-0 win over the New Jersey Devils on Thursday.
Fleury posted his 24th career shutout thanks in part to a stop on an Adam Henrique penalty shot late in the third period.
"You always want a win to start the season and this was a good way to start it," said Fleury. "But it's obvious that this was just one game and we've got a long way to go here."
Chuck Kobasew, Sidney Crosby and Craig Adams all scored for the Penguins, who were eliminated in the Eastern Conference finals last year by the Boston Bruins.
Martin Brodeur had his NHL record streak of starting 18 straight season openers in net broken, as Cory Schneider got the nod for the Devils and made 18 stops.
"They were the better team in the first period and that was the game," said New Jersey head coach Peter DeBoer. "If this was later in the season I think we would have stood a chance of coming back, but we just didn't have anything going tonight."
The Penguins got on the board at the 9:26 mark of the first period. Kobasew brought the puck in through the middle and left a drop for Brandon Sutter, who fired a shot on net. Schneider made the stop, but fellow Boston College product Kobasew followed up and put home the rebound.
Less than three minutes later it was a 2-0 game as a short 2-on-1 break saw Crosby snap the puck from the left wing into the right corner off a Pascal Dupuis dish.
After a middle period that saw Schneider make three saves and Fleury nine, the Penguins took a 3-0 lead with 8:18 to play as Evgeni Malkin sent a pass from the left wing to the slot where Adams stood for a wrist shot under the glove of Schneider.
The penalty shot came with 3:59 to play and Fleury made the stop with the right pad after Henrique faked to the forehand and tried to stuff the puck in.
Fleury posted his 250th win and recorded his first opening-night whitewash since making 40 saves in a 4-0 win against the Flyers on Oct. 5, 2006 ... New Jersey missed the playoffs last season and finished last in the Atlantic Division ... The Devils won three of four games against the Penguins last season ... The Penguins host Buffalo on Saturday ... The Devils host the Islanders on Friday.
10/04 01:15:11 ET