The Pittsburgh Penguins dominated the Tampa Bay Lightning in the first period of the first game of the 2021-22 NHL season. It was also the first game on ESPN in two decades.
However, the Penguins did not score in the opening period.
The first goal of the NHL season waited until 12 seconds into the second period. Big Jeff Carter swiped a puck from Tampa Bay goalie Andre Vasilevskiy.
A few minutes after Heinen scored the first goal of the Pittsburgh Penguins and NHL season, Brian Boyle scored his first goal in nearly two years. He last scored a regular-season goal on Jan. 16, 2020, as a member of the Florida Panthers.
The Penguins officially signed Boyle, 36, on Tuesday after he attended training camp on a PTO. By the final week of camp, Boyle had asserted himself as the “winner” of the competition for the vacant fourth-line center position.
Rookie Drew O’Connor began the play at center ice, and Sam Lafferty made a sweet saucer pass through traffic to Boyle in the left-wing circle.
The Penguins led the Tampa Bay Lightning, 2-0 after two periods, and outshot the Lightning 14-7 in the first period after Tamp a Bay lifted their 2020-21 Stanley Cup banner.