Bratt bags winner as Devils spoil Crosby's NHL season debut

Los Angeles (AFP) – Jesper Bratt scored the eventual game-winner on a penalty shot as the New Jersey Devils spoiled Sidney Crosby's National Hockey League season debut with a 4-2 win on Saturday.


Three-time Stanley Cup winner Crosby, who scored the gold-winning goal for Canada at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, had missed the first seven games of the campaign after undergoing off-season wrist surgery.

Crosby played a role in the penalty-shot goal with three minutes remaining in the third period after he pushed Sweden's Bratt into the Penguins' goal.

Bratt was awarded the penalty shot and slid a backhand past Penguins goaltender Tristan Jarry to make it 3-2.

Devils forward Andreas Johnsson would add an empty-net goal with just under two minutes left to round out the scoring before a crowd of 17,400 in Pittsburgh. It was Johnsson's second goal of the game.

Jimmy Vesey also scored for the Devils, who were playing their first road game of the season.

New Jersey goalie Jonathan Bernier, who missed the previous three games because of an injury, made 33 saves.

Jarry finished with 36 stops for the Penguins, who lost their third in a row.

Crosby is one of three players named to Team Canada for next February's Beijing Winter Olympics. The others are Edmonton Oilers forward Connor McDavid and Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alex Pietrangelo.