Phil Kessel goes beast mode, scores a natural hat trick against Vegas
Crazy! Phil the Thrill!
Pittsburgh Penguins star Phil Kessel is a notorious slow starter. He’s also a notorious bucker of trends. It only stands to reason then that he’d come out to start the 2018-19 regular season like a bat out of Hell then, right?
Heading into tonight’s contest against the Vegas Golden Knights, Kessel has a very respectable two assists on the season, but had yet to hit the scoresheet. All he needed was a period and now he’s got three. Kessel went into absolute BEAST MODE during the second period of tonight’s contest, scoring three straight goals to give the Penguins a commanding 3-1 lead. Teammate Jake Guentzel then added a fourth just for good measure.
And here’s the best part, all three goals are absolute beauties. Check out these gems:
Here's his first of the evening, a wicked wrist shot off the draw that beats Vegas goalie Malcolm Subban cleanly.
Then he went top shelf where Mama hides the cookies on a clear cut breakaway.
I mean... Phil Kessel on a breakaway is almost always a guaranteed goal. This shouldn't even be legal in the NHL...
Finally, he completed the natural hat trick with ANOTHER breakaway beauty top shelf. Check it out towards the end of this clip:
That shot... that smile. How can you NOT love this guy?
This is Kessel's 6th career NHL hat trick, but just his first with the Penguins. Which is pretty incredible considering how much of an offensive dynamo he's been since arriving in Pittsburgh following the blockbuster 2015 trade with the Toronto Maple Leafs. The 31 year old speedster is primed for another dynamic offensive season and seems to have rekindled the fire that he and superstar center Evgeni Malkin have developed over the past calendar year. Kessel hit a career high 92 points in 2017-18 and again looks poised to do even better this season. There's no doubt that he can score more than the 34 goals he managed last season, with Kessel it's not a matter of how, but how much.