Pittsburgh 3, Vancouver 0
When: 10:00 PM ET, Saturday, March 11, 2017
Where: Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia
Brad Meier, Francois St. Laurent
Brian Mach, Vaughan Rody
VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- The Pittsburgh Penguins continue to find a way to gain in the standings despite losing players to injuries.
The Penguins got a second-period goal from Ian Cole and some clutch saves from goaltender Matthew Murray to defeat the Vancouver Canucks 3-0 on Saturday night.
The win came with Matt Cullen and Carl Hagelin both knocked out of the lineup with lower-body injuries. The Penguins are already without Kris Letang (upper body), Patric Hornqvist (concussion) and Bryan Rust (upper body).
"Our guys are playing hard, we're competing hard," Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said. "Sometimes when you go through some of these adversities it can galvanize a group and that's our hope.
"We have capable people in the lineup. We're fortunate. We have a deep organization. Guys are going to have an opportunity to have more significant roles."
Sullivan said Hagelin, who has six goals and 22 points in 61 games, will be gone a minimum of four weeks.
"So, that's just one more injury that we are going to have to find a way to overcome," Sullivan said.
Murray stopped 27 shots as the Penguins extended their winning streak to five games.
The shutout was the fourth of the season for Murray and fifth of his career. One of his best stops was a glove save off a Henrik Sedin shot early in the third period.
The win moved the Penguins (43-16-8) past the Columbus Blue Jackets into second place in the Eastern Division and just one point behind Washington.
The Penguins were playing their second game in as many nights after beating Edmonton 3-2 in a shootout on Friday night. After a slow first period, they found their legs in the second when they outshot the Canucks 23-8.
"After that first period, I thought we kind of buckled down and really played solid and didn't give them really anything," Murray said.
"It says a lot to how we are playing. We're paying attention to details and it's not easy back-to-back with travel and all this adversity that we are facing."
Vancouver goalie Ryan Miller kept his team in the game by making a season-high 45 saves.
Jake Guentzel and Connor Sheary scored Pittsburgh's other goals in the third period.
Sheary's goal was into an empty net. He finished the night with eight shots and was robbed by Miller in the second period.
"It was nice to not see Miller in the net for a shot," Sheary joked. "He was stopping everything I was throwing at him."
Most of the talk in the Canucks' dressing room was about Miller's performance.
"It was huge," said Sedin, the Canucks captain. "It was a clinic for him."
Michael Chaput said the Canucks need to give Miller more support.
"All year he's seeing the puck and makes some big saves," Chaput said. "We have to score some goals.
"He's doing the job for us. We have to do it for him."
The Canucks are 0-1-2 in their last three games, but Miller managed to keep them all close.
"It's hockey," he said. "Sometimes you play well enough to win and you don't get it.
"You have to kind of accept that's part of it. You try your best whenever you are on the ice and continue to battle and see what can happen."
The Canucks (28-31-9) trail the St. Louis Blues by 10 points for the final wild-card spot in the Western Conference.
Vancouver had two goals called back.
Chaput looked to have put the Canucks ahead at 7:35 of the first period. But the goal was disallowed for goaltender interference when replays showed Chaput touched Murray's pad.
Sven Baertschi's power-play goal early in the third period was called off on a high stick.
Sedin said disallowing the first goal changed the game.
"I thought it was tough call," he said. "I don't know if it really prevented the goalie from making a save."
Murray agreed with the call.
"It's subtle, but that's the rule," he said. "You can't nudge the goalie because that completely throw you off."
NOTES: C Markus Granlund and D Chris Tanev missed the game with food poisoning. ... The Canucks recalled LW Alexandre Grenier and RW Joseph Labate from their AHL team in Utica. ... LW Brendan Gaunce was out with an upper-body injury suffered in Tuesday's loss to the New York Islanders. ... G Jacob Markstrom, sidelined seven games with a lower-body injury, skated Saturday. ... D Philip Larsen dressed after being a healthy scratch 12 times in the last 16 games. ... The Canuck homestand continues Monday against Boston. ... Pittsburgh G Matt Murray is (9-1-2) in his last 12 decisions. ... D Ian Cole has a career-high 17 assists and 22 points this season. ... TV showed LW Carl Hagelin with crutches and a walking boot. ... C Evegni Malkin played in his 704th game, sixth most in franchise history. ... The Penguins' five-game road trip continues in Calgary Monday.
Top Game Performances
Jake Guentzel 2
Jake Guentzel 1
Sidney Crosby 2
||Power Play Goals
||Short Handed Goals
Matt Murray 1.000
Ryan Miller .957
Matt Murray 27
Ryan Miller 45
Team Stats Summary
||Face Offs Won
Vancouver will play their next game at home against Boston. The Canucks have a W/L % of .414 after a win and .410 after a loss.
Pittsburgh will play their next game on the road against Calgary. The Penguins have a W/L % of .619 after a win and .680 after a loss.