March 4, 2024

Fleury celebrated for wins milestone, then makes key stops for Wild

ST. PAUL, Minn. — Marc-Andre Fleury made 32 saves and Kirill Kaprizov scored the tiebreaking aim halfway by means of the third interval because the Minnesota Wild beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 3-2 on Friday night time.

Fleury, who earned his 553rd profession win, was honored in a pregame ceremony almost a month after passing Patrick Roy (551) for second place in NHL historical past. He trails solely Martin Brodeur, who has 691 wins.

“It was a big difference in the game,” Wild coach John Hynes stated of Fleury. “Then the way the players play in front of him. It’s fun to be involved in that and see how much he battles and how much he means to the team.”

With the group that drafted Fleury first general in 2003 and the place he gained three Stanley Cups wanting on, together with former teammates nonetheless in Pittsburgh, the Wild honored Fleury with a video tribute and the goalie was given a silver, engraved stick noting his topping 1,000 video games performed, a $5,000 donation to a charity of Fleury’s selection and a memento masks with every of the 4 groups he performed on.

“I’m happy it’s over,” Fleury stated. “I was a little nervous for it. I feel like I’ve gotten softer and softer with the years and then seeing my kids on the ice and on the jumbotron talking, too; old teammates. I don’t know, it gets me.”

Reilly Smith and Sidney Crosby scored for the Penguins, and Alex Nedeljkovic made 27 saves.

“He made some big saves,” Crosby stated of Fleury. “I thought they did a great job recognizing what he’s accomplished. It was great to be a part of that, but you still want to have the bragging rights at the end of the night.”

With all eyes on Fleury and the followers offering a number of “Fleury” chants, he held sturdy again in web for the primary time in 5 video games after being sidelined by an upper-body harm.

Matt Boldy and Jonas Brodin additionally scored for Minnesota, which has gained 5 of seven.

Smith, in his second sport again after lacking time with an upper-body harm, scored his ninth of the season at 2:54 of the second to tie it. It was Smith’s first aim since Dec. 18, a span of 11 video games.

Crosby, who earlier in the day gifted a painting to Fleury, scored 1:01 into the third, deflecting some extent shot from Erik Karlsson into an open web on the aspect of Fleury to tie it once more.

“That’s what matters always, the win, but I had him a couple times in the second,” Fleury stated. “I was happy about that. And then he scored, had a good celebration too. Geez.”

Information from The Associated Press was used on this story.