Malkin sits out, Pens fall to Oilers

BY foxsports • October 9, 2011

Ales Hemsky scored the shootout winner and the Edmonton Oilers started off the season with a 2-1 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins on Sunday night.

Rookie Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored the tying goal with less than five minutes left in regulation for the Oilers.

Kris Letang scored for the Penguins, who were without Evgeni Malkin. The center left after the pregame skate with what appeared to be a lower body injury.

Nugent-Hopkins, the first pick in this past summer's NHL draft, got his first NHL goal as he pounced on a loose puck in front of the Penguins net and slid a backhand shot past Penguins starter Brent Johnson at 15:05.

Oiler Ryan Smyth took an elbowing major soon afterward, but Edmonton was able to kill the penalty.

Both teams hit posts in overtime, but couldn't score.

Pittsburgh scored early in the first period on the power play. Letang's point shot seemed to go right through Edmonton goalie Devan Dubnyk at 3:13.

Notes: With Malkin out, former Oilers enforcer Steve MacIntyre came in as his replacement. ... Edmonton head coach Tom Renney is a perfect 8-0 in home openers over his career. ... The Penguins had won their last four wins over the Oilers. ... Penguins star Sidney Crosby practiced with the team on Sunday but has still not been cleared to play. ... The largest crowd response during player introductions went to F Ryan Smyth, returning to the team four years after an unpopular trade sent him to the Islanders.

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