Ryan Dadoun

Hockey Daily Dose

print article archives RSS

Murray, Penguins Bounce Back

Friday, June 9, 2017


Although the Predators and Penguins have been arguably evenly matched in the Stanley Cup Final overall with the exception of Game 1 these contests haven’t come down to the wire.  That was the case again on Thursday as Pittsburgh cruised to a 6-0 victory to claim a 3-2 series lead.

 

To make matters worse for Nashville, Ryan Ellis exited the game in the second period due to an injury.  It’s possible that the Predators were keeping him out for precautionary reasons given that they had already basically lost the game at that point, but if the Predators did lose Ellis then it would naturally be a big blow for the team.  He had been providing them with an average of 24:02 minutes of ice time per contest prior to Thursday’s game.

 

Don’t forget, for everything NHL, check out Rotoworld's Player News, and follow @Rotoworld_ HK and @RyanDadoun on Twitter.


Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne, who had been strong in the previous two contests, was chased after this one after allowing three goals on nine shots in the first period.  Juuse Saros replaced him for the second time this series, but he couldn’t stop the bleeding.

 

At the other end of the ice Matt Murray rewarded Penguins coach Mike Sullivan for sticking with him even after Murray allowed a combined eight goals in Pittsburgh’s Games 3 and 4 losses.  Murray made 24 saves last night to earn his first shutout of the 2017 Stanley Cup Final and his second in nine playoff starts this year.

 

Justin Schultz scored the game-winning goal for the Penguins just 1:31 minutes into the contest.  It was his fourth marker and 12th point in 20 playoff games.

 

It was Phil Kessel that led the charge for the Penguins’ offense though.  After being held to just one assist in the first four games of the Stanley Cup Final, he broke out on Thursday with a goal and two assists.  He’s up to eight goals and 23 points in 24 postseason contests in 2017.

 

Sidney Crosby also came up big for Pittsburgh by assisting on three of their six goals.  That gives him eight goals and 27 points in 23 playoff games.

 

Evgeni Malkin scored his 10th goal and registered his 18th assist in 24 postseason games.  If Pittsburgh ends up winning the Stanley Cup, then it’s plausible that Malkin will claim his second Conn Smythe Trophy.

 

Defenseman Ron Hainsey had a goal and an assist.  Through 24 playoff games he’s recorded two goals and eight points.

 

Bryan Rust and Conor Sheary accounted for the Penguins’ two other goals.  For Rust it was his seventh marker of the playoffs.

 

Viktor Arvidsson had a team-worst minus-four rating.  The Predators forward also received a fighting major and 10-minute misconduct for sparring with Carl Hagelin midway through the third period.

 

The home team has now won all five games in this series, which is a tread that Nashville will have to keep alive on Sunday in order to force a Game 7.  If the Predators are successful in defending their home ice then the final contest will be on Wednesday.  Otherwise Pittsburgh will become the first team to successfully defend its championship since the Red Wings won back-to-back championships in 1997 and 1998.



Ryan Dadoun is an Associate Editor for Hockey on Rotoworld. Feel free to follow him on Twitter or check out his blog.
Email :Ryan Dadoun



Highest Searched Players over the last 7 days



Video Center

  •  
    Rankings: Steelers on top

    Rankings: Steelers on top
  •  
    Dose: Rodgers returns for GB

    Dose: Rodgers returns for GB
  •  
    Waivers: Wentz replacements

    Waivers: Wentz replacements
  •  
    Dose: Miami upsets NE

    Dose: Miami upsets NE
  •  
    Dose: PIT

    Dose: PIT's O crushes BAL
  •  
    Silva: Week 14 Matchups

    Silva: Week 14 Matchups
  •  
    Dose: Kamara injured in loss

    Dose: Kamara injured in loss
  •  
    Dose: Will Stafford Play?

    Dose: Will Stafford Play?