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PITTSBURGH (AP) — A renewed commitment to defense has the Pittsburgh Penguins back on track after a bumpy November.The Penguins’ dynamic offense appears to have found its stride Jakob Silfverberg Jersey , too.Kris Letang and Phil Kessel each scored twice, and the Penguins beat the New York Islanders 6-2 on Thursday night.“Obviously, this year hasn’t started off the best for us, but we’re right in it,” Kessel said. “There’s a lot of hockey to play and we just gotta keep improving and getting better.”Kessel, who also had two assists, tied Ed Olczyk, Scott Young and Brian Rolston for 10th all-time in career goals by an American-born player with 342. Letang’s two goals moved him in front of Larry Murphy for most multigoal home games for a Penguins’ defenseman in franchise history.Sidney Crosby scored his 15th goal and had two assists. Crosby tied Jaromir Jagr for second-most home goals in franchise history with 232. Riley Sheahan scored his fourth goal for Pittsburgh, which pulled into a third-place tie in the Metropolitan Division with the Islanders and New York Rangers. The Penguins have won two straight and five of eight following a slump in which they won once in 10 games.Jake Guentzel had three assists and established a career-best six-game point streak for Pittsburgh, which scored six or more goals in back-to-back games for the second time this season.Casey DeSmith made 19 saves to win for the fifth time in six starts.“I think we’ve really improved in our own end,” Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said. “We’re not giving up nearly as many chances as we did in probably the first 20 games of the season. We’re cutting down not only the quantity of chances http://www.officialducks.com/authentic-adidas-john-gibson-jersey , but the quality on most nights. We have our hiccups, but we’re certainly trending in the right direction.”New York’s Anders Lee scored for the fourth straight game, his 11th of the season. Brock Nelson’s 10th was a short-handed goal for the Islanders, who have one win in their last five games.Thomas Greiss stopped 16 shots through two periods before he was replaced by Christopher Gibson, who made six saves.“It definitely wasn’t the standard that we needed to come to play with, so it’s on us,” Nelson said. “They got a couple, and it’s times like that on the road where you kind of have to find a way to stop it, get some momentum back and get back on the attack. It’s frustrating, for sure.”After Letang scored on a give-and-go with Derick Brassard, Nelson tied it late in the first period. It was the fourth short-handed goal allowed by Pittsburgh in five games and its league-worst eighth this season.Letang helped the Penguins recover when he scored again with 29 seconds left in the period on a slap shot from center point.Sheahan batted the rebound from Evgeni Malkin’s shot to make it 3-1 Authentic Josh Manson Jersey , and Kessel scored twice in a six-minute span later in the second period. Crosby and Guentzel assisted on both goals.Kessel’s first was a slick passing sequence in which Guentzel sent a quick pass to Crosby at the near post, who one-touched the puck to the opposite post. Kessel finished the play into a partially open net.“Those are easy ones,” Kessel said. “You just try not to miss them.”Kessel’s second was another one-timer, this time on a 2-on-1 with Crosby. The Penguins’ captain added his own goal in the third when he squeezed a bad-angle shot between Gibson’s helmet and the post from near the goal line.NOTES: Crosby has points in 15 of his last 17 games against the Islanders, and Malkin has points in 16 of 20 versus New York. … Penguins F Patric Hornqvist left the game after the first period for undisclosed reasons. … Penguins F Dominik Simon missed the game because of a lower-body injury. … Islanders G Robin Lehner skated Thursday but was not available to back up Greiss. … Pittsburgh has won four of its last five home games. … G Matt Murray and F Matt Cullen both skated prior to the game for Pittsburgh.UP NEXTIslanders: Visit Detroit on Saturday.Penguins: Begin a three-game trip Saturday at Ottawa. NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) Facing a tired team, the Nashville Predators jumped on Winnipeg early.Pekka Rinne made 32 saves and the surging Predators scored two short-handed goals in beating the Jets 3-1 on Tuesday night to tie for the top spot in the NHL standings.Kevin Fiala, Austin Watson and Viktor Arvidsson had the goals for Nashville, which has won 11 of 12.The Predators reached 100 points in 69 games, the fastest mark in franchise history. The defending Western Conference champions are even with Eastern Conference-leading Tampa Bay – and Nashville has played one fewer game.Kyle Connor scored for the Jets, losers of three straight. Winnipeg fell eight points behind the first-place Predators in the Central Division.”We had marked it as a game that had to go our way as we sit here and push towards it late in the season Ondrej Kase Jersey ,” Nashville coach Peter Laviolette said. ”Trying to battle for what we need to do in order to better ourselves for the playoffs and obviously the division and the conference. Those are things we talk about, so the two points were very important.”Nashville scored three goals before the game was nine minutes old. Playing the finale of a six-game road trip, their longest of the season – and their second game in two nights – the Jets came out sluggish against the speedy Predators.Fiala scored the first goal at 2:48 of the opening period.Roman Josi carried the puck up center ice before sending a pass to Kyle Turris on the right side. Turris returned the pass to Josi as he continued through the slot and he immediately fed a trailing Fiala with a backhand pass. He had an open net, and he buried a snap shot up high for his 22nd goal of the season.”I think every season you play, you want to climb up in the standings,” Josi said. ”You want to finish as high as you can. It’s definitely one of our goals. It’s huge for the playoffs to get that home-ice advantage. It’s definitely on our mind and we want to stay there now and get better.”Watson and Arvidsson scored short-handed goals 34 seconds apart on the same penalty kill to make it 3-0. It was the first time in Predators history that they scored short-handed twice on the same power play.”Right now, the team is playing great,” Watson said. ”Our penalty kill has done a good job of taking away time and space and forcing turnovers. When you get a chance to jump on it, it’s nice. Every time a couple go in for you, it helps.”Jets coach Paul Maurice called a basketball-style timeout following Arvidsson’s goal. Following the stoppage, Connor Hellebuyck took over in goal for starter Michael Hutchinson. After the first period Rickard Rakell Jersey , the team announced that Hutchinson would not return due to an upper-body injury. Hutchinson stopped 12 of the 15 shots he faced in 8:45 of action.Nashville poured 24 shots on the Winnipeg net in the first, its most in a period this season.After the first, Winnipeg founds its legs and put 27 shots on Rinne in the final two periods.”In a tough situation, I really liked the way we stayed with it,” Maurice said. ”There wasn’t anything easy there for us tonight. The bench was good. They kept battling and we kind of shut the game down well in the second period, which is hard to do, and had a good push in the third. That’s what I’m taking from this one.”Hellebuyck made 30 saves in relief.Connor got Winnipeg on the scoreboard at 1:08 of the third with a power-play goal when he tapped in the rebound of Blake Wheeler’s shot from the right side.”I saw a team that was down about half their players and playing the back end of a back-to-back,” Jets captain Blake Wheeler said of his team. ”We went into a tough overtime last night. We knew the first was going to be tough for us. They came out hot.”Patrik Laine picked up an assist on Connor’s goal, extending his franchise-record point streak to 13 games.Watson also did some strong work in his defensive zone to help Rinne. With just more than eight minutes gone in the third, he cleared a puck that was headed into the net after Rinne got a piece of a shot from Laine.NOTES: Watson’s four short-handed goals this season place him one behind NHL leader Aleksander Barkov of the Florida Panthers. … Nashville is 34-3-5 when scoring first. … Winnipeg successfully killed off all three Nashville power plays. The Jets have not allowed an opponent to score on the man advantage in five of their last six games. … Jets C Paul Stastny was a late scratch. Maurice said Stastny experienced tightness during warmups and could not play.UP NEXTJets: Host the Chicago Blackhawks on Thursday.Predators: At the Arizona Coyotes on Thursday.—

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