Thursday, 8 June 2017

NHL - Eastern Conference Final - Pittsburgh Penguins vs Ottawa Senators - Pens Wins Series 4-3

Game 1 - Ottawa Senators @ Penguins 2-1 OT - Saturday, May 13, 2017
Ottawa Senators forward Bobby Ryan was the second pick in the 2005 NHL Draft, behind Sidney Crosby. Ryan has impressed during his 10 NHL seasons but has never reached the heights Crosby has. But in Game 1, Ryan scored 4:59 into overtime to give the Senators a 2-1 win against Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Final at PPG Paints Arena. Ryan skated in on goalie Marc-Andre Fleury and went forehand to backhand to score.
The Senators are 6-1 in overtime this postseason. Penguins forward Evgeni Malkin tied it 1-1 with 5:35 remaining in the third period. It was his sixth goal, and he leads the Stanley Cup Playoffs with 19 points. Fleury made 33 saves for the Penguins; Craig Anderson made 27 for the Senators.
Jean-Gabriel Pageau gave Ottawa a 1-0 lead at 14:32 of the first period. Penguins defenseman Brian Dumoulin turned over the puck behind the net to Ryan, who backhanded a pass that Pageau one-timed over Fleury's glove for his eighth goal of the playoffs. Pageau had 12 goals in 82 regular-season games.

* After the puck was tipped away from Penguins defenseman Justin Schultz along the near wall, Ryan charged past defenseman Olli Maatta before scoring on Fleury.
* Chris Kunitz retrieved the puck below the goal line, carried it up the wall and shot toward the net, where Malkin tipped it through Anderson's legs
* Defenseman Marc Methot led Ottawa with seven hits and four blocks playing 23:34.* Ryan's goal was his fifth of the playoffs. He went six games without one since scoring four in the first six games. … Ryan was drafted by the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim and was traded to Ottawa after the 2012-13 season. … Malkin has 148 playoff points (54 goals, 94 assists), one more than Jaromir Jagr for third-most in Penguins history behind Mario Lemieux (172) and Crosby (151). ... Three teams have more overtime wins in a single postseason than Ottawa's six: the 1993 Montreal Canadiens (10), 2002 Carolina Hurricanes (seven) and 2003 Mighty Ducks (seven), according to the Elias Sports Bureau. ... Ottawa has won Game 1 in each of its three conference finals (2003, 2007). ... Senators forward Tommy Wingels replaced Viktor Stalberg, who is day to day with an undisclosed injury. … Penguins forward Carl Hagelin missed a second game with a lower-body injury.
Pens Quotes
"In the third period, we played so much better. We talked in [the] locker room, we understood how they play and started to play better. Like in overtime, they scored a tough goal. We understand. They waited. They need one chance, 2-on-1 or 3-on-2 to score. They have good players. We need to play like [we did Thursday against the Washington Capitals in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Second Round]." Malkin said.
"This is playoff hockey... You're going to play games where you get chances and they don't go in. But if you play the right way, eventually it'll end up going in. I think we just need to keep the same mindset and find ways to get better."  Crosby said.
"We had a lot of offensive-zone time. I don't think we got enough pucks to the net. We're looking for that next play instead of putting that puck at the net." Mike Sullivan

Game 2 - Ottawa Senators @ Penguins 0-1 - Monday, May 15, 2017
Phil Kessel needed one shot in Game 2. Kessel scored on his only shot on goal with 6:55 left in the third period to help the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 1-0 win against the Ottawa Senators in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Final at PPG Paints Arena. After receiving a pass from Evgeni Malkin, Kessel shot off Jean-Gabriel Pageau, collected the puck and shot past Craig Anderson's left pad. Kessel's goal ended his three-game scoring drought. Marc-Andre Fleury made 23 saves for his second shutout in his past three starts. He has allowed two goals during that span. Anderson made 28 saves for the Senators. Pittsburgh outshot Ottawa 12-6 in the second period and had the first eight shots of the third. The Senators' first shot of the third period came on a backhand from forward Zack Smith with 4:54 left. Their previous shot came with 3:47 remaining in the second period.
Penguins right wing Bryan Rust and defenseman Justin Schultz each left during the first half of the first period with apparent injuries. Rust left after absorbing a hit from Dion Phaneuf in the middle of the offensive zone at 4:58. Schultz attempted to bump Mike Hoffman off the puck behind the Penguins net and slid into the end boards at 9:30 before immediately leaving to the locker room.
The Penguins played the rest of the game with 11 forwards and five defensemen. Pittsburgh forward Patric Hornqvist did not play because of an undisclosed injury after participating in line rushes during warmups. He missed practice Sunday and Pittsburgh's optional morning skate Monday before coach Mike Sullivan labeled him a game-time decision. Sullivan did not provide updates on Hornqvist, Rust or Schultz following the game. Forward Carl Hagelin, who was also a game-time decision, returned after missing the previous two games because of a lower-body injury.

* Kessel's goal was the latest game-winner he had ever scored in 60 career Stanley Cup Playoff games.
* Scott Wilson nearly gave the Penguins a 1-0 lead with 37.2 seconds left in the second period when a puck slipped to him in front of the Ottawa crease. He caught it and shot on Anderson, who made the save and covered the puck before Sidney Crosby poked at it.

"We had a lot of chances. Obviously, it's an emotional game. There are ups and downs. We found a way." Kessel said.
At one point, television cameras caught Kessel yelling on the bench. Following the game, Kessel said he couldn't remember what he said.
"To be honest, I think I yelled more than once tonight."
"Wait. I just tried to skate to the corners. Stretch out. … I just tried to stay loose. I tried to talk to the guys when they came by and tried to keep my head into it. I always expected [Ottawa] to come with a push at the end, especially after the goal there." Fleury said when asked about what he did between Senators shots.
"I thought it was a pretty solid effort start to finish. We have to play a patient game. We have to make sure we take what's given out there." Mike Sullivan

Game 3 - Penguins @ Ottawa Senators 1-5 - Wednesday, May 17, 2017

The Ottawa Senators scored four first-period goals in a 5-1 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Final at Canadian Tire Centre. Mike Hoffman, Marc Methot, Derick Brassard and Zack Smith scored in the first, and Kyle Turris also had a goal for Ottawa. Craig Anderson made 25 saves. Sidney Crosby scored for Pittsburgh. Marc-Andre Fleury allowed four goals on nine shots and was replaced by Matt Murray, who made 19 saves in his 2017 Stanley Cup Playoff debut. Hoffman gave the Senators a 1-0 lead 48 seconds into the game. Methot scored at 10:34, Brassard scored at 12:28 and Smith scored at 12:52 to make it 4-0. The three goals came in a 2:18 span, the fastest the Senators have scored three in the playoffs in their history. Ottawa's previous record was 4:00 in a 5-0 win against the Toronto Maple Leafs in Game 1 of the 2002 conference semifinals. Turris scored at 18:18 of the second period to make it 5-0. Crosby scored on the power play at 6:07 of the third to make it 5-1. Murray, who helped the Penguins win the Stanley Cup last season, played for the first time since April 6. He was injured during warmups prior to Game 1 of the first round against the Columbus Blue Jackets on April 12.

* Hoffman gave the Senators the start they wanted when he banked a shot from along the goal line off the bottom of Fleury's pad.
"I got one early on and then the crowd got into it and it seemed like we got rolling and they couldn't play with it or stop it," Hoffman said.

"Like always in the playoffs, I think we've been good at [having] short memories. If it's a 2-1 loss or a 5-1 loss, we look at it the same way and just put it behind us and be ready for the next one." Marc-Andre Fleury
"You can't expect to win games getting a start like that, especially in the playoffs." Crosby said.
It was Crosby's first point of the series and his first goal in eight games.
"I just think we've got to be more ready to play from the drop of the puck. I think, when you give up a goal that early in the game against a team that's playing at home, it gives their team a lot of energy. So I think we've got to be ready right from the drop of the puck, and we simply have to be better. We've got to be playing on our toes. It's tough when you give up that many goals in the first period. You don't really give your team a chance in the game. It wasn't like we gave up a lot of scoring chances. We didn't. But they all seemed to go in the net." Mike Sullivan said.
Game 4 - Penguins @ Ottawa Senators 3-2 - Friday, May 19, 2017

Matt Murray made 24 saves in his first start of this postseason, and the Pittsburgh Penguins defeated the Ottawa Senators 3-2 in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Final at Canadian Tire Centre. Olli Maatta, Sidney Crosby and Brian Dumoulin scored to give the Penguins a 3-0 lead 11:30 into the second period.
Clarke MacArthur and Tom Pyatt scored for the Senators, and Craig Anderson made 32 saves. Ottawa finished the game on the power play when Pittsburgh was penalized for having too many on the ice with 35 seconds left. Murray, playing in place of Marc-Andre Fleury, made nine saves in the third period. Maatta gave the Penguins a 1-0 lead when he scored his first Stanley Cup Playoff goal (in 47 games) off a pass from Crosby on an odd-man rush with 46 seconds left in the first period. Crosby scored on the power play at 7:41 of the second period to make it 2-0, and Dumoulin made it 3-0 at 11:30 with his first of this postseason. MacArthur scored with 1:38 left in the period to make it 3-1.
Pyatt made it 3-2 with 5:01 remaining in the third period when a shot by Karlsson deflected in off him. Murray, who was injured during warmups before Game 1 of the first round against the Columbus Blue Jackets, made his 2017 playoffs debut in relief of Fleury in Game 3.
* Dumoulin scored when his shot went in off the skate of Ottawa defenseman Dion Phaneuf.

"As I've said all along here, this group has a knack for responding the right way to any of the adversities or the challenges that this team has been faced with. I think it always starts with our leadership. It starts with our captain (Crosby)." Mike Sullivan
"It's not an easy thing to do. All I can really do is kind of jump in and try not to think about it. Just try and play with the flow of the game and kind of let yourself get lost in the game a little bit.
"I thought I did a pretty good job of that tonight. There's a lot of ways I could have been a lot better, I thought, but all together felt good about the game. And like I said, the guys played unbelievably tonight. I think it was when we needed it the most. We really needed a win here and a good bounce-back game, and that's what we had." Murray said of joining the Stanley Cup Playoffs in progress.
"We know either one of the goalies is going to give us a chance to win. Murray was awesome today. He made some huge saves to keep us in the game. You know what? He was just a wall out there." Maatta said.
"I think our desperation was a little bit higher. That's something last game (a 5-1 loss Wednesday) that we felt wasn't there. That was kind of a point of emphasis for us going into this game, a better start and a little more desperation in our game, and with that we got some good results." Crosby said.

Game 5 - Ottawa Senators @ Penguins 0-7 - Sunday, May 21, 2017

Throughout the Stanley Cup Playoffs, the Pittsburgh Penguins have searched for the same overwhelming speed they used to win the Stanley Cup last season.
They found it in Game 5. Four first-period goals helped the Penguins defeat the Ottawa Senators 7-0 in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Final at PPG Paints Arena. Matt Murray made 25 saves for the Penguins for his second shutout in 24 career Stanley Cup Playoff games. Olli Maatta scored his second goal in as many games to give the Penguins a 1-0 lead at 8:14 of the first before Sidney Crosby scored a power-play goal in a third straight game to extend it to 2-0 at 12:03. Bryan Rust, who returned after missing two games with an upper-body injury, scored with 3:56 left in the first for a 3-0 lead. The Senators pulled Craig Anderson after Rust's goal. Mike Condon made one save in 1:28 of relief before Anderson returned to the net following a media timeout with 2:29 remaining in the first. Senators coach Guy Boucher said he informed Anderson he had taken him out to stall without taking a timeout. Anderson allowed a goal to Scott Wilson who backhanded a rebound off his skate to make it 4-0 with 1:43 left in the first. Condon, who made 19 saves on 22 shots, took over again to start the second period. Anderson made 10 saves on 14 shots. Matt Cullen made it 5-0 at 1:54 of the second period, Phil Kessel pushed it to 6-0 with a power-play goal 50 seconds into the third period and Trevor Daley scored the third power-play goal of the game for Pittsburgh at 8:49 to make it 7-0. Crosby, who had a goal and an assist, passed Anaheim Ducks forward Ryan Getzlaf (18 points) for second in playoff scoring with 19 points. Evgeni Malkin, who had three assists, leads with 23 points. Senators defensemen Erik Karlsson and Cody Ceci, and forward Derick Brassard each left. Boucher said they were taken out to rest and were healthy enough to return.

* Leading to Crosby's goal, Malkin kept the puck in the offensive zone by stickhandling around Viktor Stalberg several times just inside the blue line. Malkin passed to Daley, who took a slap shot that Crosby deflected under Anderson's blocker.
* Carter Rowney bumped Kyle Turris off the puck before he could carry it into the neutral zone. Rowney recovered the puck and shot on Anderson, which allowed Bonino to shoot the rebound off of Rust and in the net.

"We did a really good job. The majority of that was because we had the puck the whole time, so we didn't really have to defend." Matt Murray
"Obviously, the team played extremely well tonight. Every line, we liked. It was a solid effort. … This was one of the more complete efforts, for sure. We've had a few of them. This is one of them. I thought our guys had a readiness about them tonight that we're going to need moving forward." Mike Sullivan said.
"I just think we capitalized on our chances. I don't think we did anything different. I feel like we had a good start. We gave ourselves a chance to score some of those goals." Crosby said.

Game 6 - Penguins @ Ottawa Senators 1-2 - Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Craig Anderson made 45 saves to help the Ottawa Senators avoid elimination with a 2-1 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Final at Canadian Tire Centre. Anderson was pulled from a 7-0 loss in Game 5 on Sunday after allowing four goals on 14 shots. Mike Hoffman scored 1:34 into the third period to break a 1-1 tie. Evgeni Malkin scored and Matt Murray made 28 saves for the Penguins. After Malkin gave the Penguins a 1-0 lead at 4:51 of the second period, the Senators ended an 0-for-29 streak on the power play to tie the game during a 5-on-3 advantage. Ron Hainsey was called for interference at 11:45 and Ian Cole was penalized for high sticking Senators center Kyle Turris at 12:21. Bobby Ryan tied it 1-1 at 13:15 when he took a pass from Turris in the left circle and swept a shot past Murray on the stick side. It was Ottawa's first goal on Murray in 98:16 in the series. He won Games 4 and 5 after returning from an injury sustained before Game 1 of the first round. Trevor Daley swept the puck into the net for Pittsburgh at 3:04 of the second during a scramble in the crease. But the Senators challenged for goalie interference and the goal was overturned upon review.
* Hoffman took a pass from defenseman Fredrik Claesson on the left wing and scored with a slap shot that went in off the right post.
"I had a decent amount of time to corral it and pick my spot," Hoffman said. "I guess I was just waiting for the guys to create some room so I was able to shoot through a screen and beat [Murray] on the far side."

"We played a good game. It happens sometimes in the playoffs. We've got to regroup but we did a lot of good things. We probably deserved better tonight." Sidney Crosby
"Obviously, we're disappointed in the result, but I don't think we can get discouraged by that. I think we've got to take the positives from it, and we've got to build on it, and we've got to become a more determined team for Game 7." Mike Sullivan

Game 7 - Ottawa Senators @ Penguins 2-3 2OT - Thursday, May 25, 2017

It had been a while since Chris Kunitz showed how valuable he's been throughout his time with the Pittsburgh Penguins. Kunitz did his part to send Pittsburgh back to the Stanley Cup Final. The left wing scored 5:09 into the second overtime to give the Penguins a 3-2 win against the Ottawa Senators in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final at PPG Paints Arena. The overtime goal was Kunitz's second of the game. He hadn't scored since Feb. 16, a span of 35 games. It was the 41st time, and seventh time in a conference final, a Game 7 in the Stanley Cup Playoffs reached overtime. Home teams are 21-20 after Pittsburgh's win. Matt Murray made 27 saves for Pittsburgh. Craig Anderson made 39 for Ottawa.
Senators forward Ryan Dzingel tied it 2-2 with 5:19 left in the third period off a rebound. Pittsburgh took a 2-1 lead with 8:16 remaining. After Dion Phaneuf was called for interference on Phil Kessel, Justin Schultz shot past a screen by Kunitz and off the right post. Schultz returned Thursday after missing four games because of an upper-body injury. Kunitz gave the Penguins a 1-0 lead at 9:55 of the second period before Mark Stone tied it 1-1 20 seconds later. Kunitz passed to Conor Sheary, leading to a 2-on-1 facing Erik Karlsson. Sheary passed over Karlsson's stick to Kunitz, who shot inside the left post. Sheary was in the lineup after being a healthy scratch the past two games. In the second period, Sullivan moved Sheary from the fourth line to the first with Sidney Crosby and Kunitz. Karlsson set up the tying goal by passing to Stone and allowing him to put a shot over Murray to make it 1-1 at 10:15 of the second. The goal was Stone's first since he scored in the Games 5 and 6 of the second round against the New York Rangers.

* Crosby passed back to Kunitz, who one-timed a shot past Jean-Gabriel Pageau and Anderson.

"It should be some exciting hockey as far as back-and-forth and fast and physical. I think both teams like to play a pretty similar style." Sidney Crosby on facing the Predators
"I don't think it really matters who scores. I think we're all just happy that the game is ended and we're on the top side of it and that we get to go play for another Stanley Cup. I think it's something that takes work from everybody on the ice to be able to score a goal." Kunitz said.
"This was a hard-fought series and we knew it was going to be a hard-fought series going in. [Ottawa] is a really good team. They're not here by accident. They're a really good team and they're hard to play against. I'm proud of our group for the resilience that they showed throughout the course of this series." Mike Sullivan said.

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