ANAHEIM, Calif. (AP) — Evgeni Malkin scored twice and had an assist in his season debut, Jeff Carter added two goals and the surging Pittsburgh Penguins rolled to a 4-1 victory over the Anaheim Ducks on Tuesday night.
Malkin had not played since undergoing right knee surgery in June. The four-time All-Star and 2012 Hart Trophy winner had been skating with teammates for several weeks and was a full participant in Monday’s practice.
It was Malkin’s 63rd multigoal game during the regular season and first since March 10, 2020. The 35-year-old Russian center had a career-low eight goals and 28 points in 33 games last season.
Malkin centered the second line between Carter and Kasperi Kapanen, which was responsible for all four Pittsburgh goals. Kapanen added two assists and Tristan Jarry stopped 25 shots for the Penguins, who bounced right back from Saturday’s 3-2 loss at Dallas that snapped a 10-game winning streak.
Jakob Silfverberg scored Anaheim’s goal and Anthony Stolarz made 30 saves.
Malkin got his first goal on a power play at 3:27 of the second period to give Pittsburgh a 2-0 advantage. He ripped a 47-foot slap shot that went through Stolarz’s legs. Sidney Crosby, screening Stolarz on the play, had to leap and just avoided the puck deflecting off his skate.
Malkin added another at 14:38 of the second when he redirected John Marino’s shot off Stolarz’s blocker. He then assisted on Carter’s empty-net goal with 2:57 remaining.
Carter, who had his 65th multigoal game, opened the scoring 65 seconds in when he took advantage of a turnover deep in the Ducks zone and fired a slap shot that went in off the far post. Carter has 11 goals on the season and three in his last four games.
LONG DROUGHT ENDS
Silfverberg scored his second goal of the season and first in 31 games at 8:33 of the second when he knocked in a rebound. Jarry made a pad save on Josh Manson’s shot, but Sonny Milano was able to keep the puck alive and fed it to Silfverberg as Jarry was still down on the ice.
Silfverberg scored 21 goals in 2018-19 and has four seasons with at least 20. But the Anaheim right wing has only 10 goals since the start of last season.
Penguins: Remain in Southern California to face the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday.
Ducks: Begin a two-game road trip against the Minnesota Wild on Friday.
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