NEWARK, NJ (AP) – Sidney Crosby swung on the opening day of the baseball season for the Pittsburgh Penguins, preventing the New Jersey Devils their four-game season with the two-time defender Stanley Swept Cup Champion

Crosby scored his own rebound from the air and into the net 19 seconds after overtime, and the Penguins defeated the Devils 4: 3 on Thursday night for the second time in just over a week Back-hit win-back Conn Smythe Trophy winner met on a baseball sw Ing.

"I've seen him so many times, it does not surprise us anymore," said Mike Sullivan, Penguins coach. "He's an elite player, there are not many guys doing this kind of games, he does it all the time, he keeps the game at such a high level and he's such a rival."

Kris Letang After leaving the pass in the first minute of the Pittsburgh zone, Taylor Hall sent Crosby into the other half. His first shot hit the goalpost, but then the Star Center pulled his hands in and hit the puck, extending his shots to five.

The record was similar to one against Montreal last Wednesday, when Crosby juggled the puck on his stick, before smacking it just below the shoulder level.

Crosby, who has won almost every major award in the NHL, modestly downplayed his last trick.

"I just tried to stick with it," he said. "It's lucky it came back to me, I saw it off the hook."

Pittsburgh defender Brian Dumoulin declared the goal untrustworthy.

"It's kind of awe," he said. "I mean, we see it a lot, but every time he does it and makes something special, it's crazy to see and enjoy it, it just speaks to an incredible player."

Conor Sheary, Letang and Patric Hornqvist also scored for the penguins. Matt Murray made 28 saves.

Kyle Palmieri, Hall and Blake Coleman scored for the Devil, who had cracked a three-game winning streak. Keith Kinkaid only had to parry 31 times in his last 16 decisions (12-3-1).

"This is a good team over there," Palmieri said after the Devils had held three points ahead of Florida for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. "They know how to win this season, we take the point and restore some things for us, it's a big weekend for us."

New Jersey still has five games in the regular season, one less than the Panthers, who lost in Ottawa and 3-2 in Ottawa.

The losses of Ottawa and New Jersey cleared playoff places for Washington and Toronto, both of which were inactive.

The game was tied three times, with the penguins being lucky on Hornqvist's 25th goal which they had tied with 8:34 in the regulation. His shot from within the blue line went through a maze of players, hitting the goal post, then bouncing off Kinkaid's leg into the net.

Coleman had given the Devils the lead, 5:11 in the third half. He stole a puck against the penguins' blue line, worked with Travis Zajac, and then gave Murray the rebound of his own shot. It was his 12th goal of the season and third against Pittsburgh.

The game was 1 – all after the first period and 2 – all tied after the second.

Palmieri, who has scored four goals in his last three games, was sent off an escape by Nico Hischier, beating Murray between the pads at 12:19. Sheary made his way 25 seconds later after beating Hornqvist with a cross and narrowly defeating Kinkaid.

Letang, with two goals in the lead, put Pittsburgh 6:59 minutes ahead of Kinkaid's right-wing leadership.

Hall bound the game with a power play goal from the right circle. It was his 34th goal.

NOTES: Hishier is the first Devils rookie to have scored 50 points in one season since Adam Henrique in 2011/12. … The Penguins now have four 25-goal goalscorer with Hornqvist, Evgeni Malkin (42), Phil Kessel (30) and Crosby (28). It's the first time since 2011-12. … RW Patrick Maroon returned to the Devils' lineup after missing two games with a lower body injury. … rookie RW Jesper Bratt was a healthy scratch.

UP NEXT

Penguins: Host Montreal on Saturday.

Devils: Finish home game against Islanders on Saturday.

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