He pointed to the winning goal scored by Nathan Horton against Guy Boucher's Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 7 of the 2011 Eastern Conference finals as the kind of play that effectively found the soft spots inside the 1-3-1. "You just want to not get too high after one win".
Much as ancient Scottish clans used bagpipes to frighten and intimidate their enemies, Ottawa fans back home - well, one particular teenaged fan, at least - had the same idea Saturday night on Sens Mile. They finished second in the Atlantic division, and have proven themselves against stiff Eastern Conference competition. Ottawa would be wise to not give them many chances in Game 2.
"Ultimately, Pittsburgh has to be disciplined and patient", the Western Conference coach said. Penguins forward Evgeni Malkin (1-0-1) earned his League-leading 19th point of the playoffs (6-13-19). Essentially, this style works when the puck carrier beats the initial forechecker then runs into the wall that is awaiting him. We believe we can get speed, get zone time, plant our toes a bit, and we're better served that way. That said, I agree with Ary as I noticed something similar: the Sens were far less aggressive with their pinching, specifically in the neutral zone. Whether this strategy can be sustained playing against so much talent remains to be seen. The chorus has grown so loud over the last month, tuning it out simply wasn't an option no matter how many one-goal victories they pulled off in the playoffs. It's an easy recipe for success - especially against a team who likes to trap - and something that becomes a little more important for a team that has struggled with their starts this postseason. Back then, Lemieux had 34 points in 15 playoff games. The top three lines had no life most of the night and the power play went a putrid 0-for-5.
During the first period Saturday, it felt as though the Penguins had a ton of room compared to the space they had on the ice in the previous round versus the Capitals. One shot every 52-seconds against a team that is down a skater is not good.
In Game 1, the Senators took five minor penalties, including four in the first period. Since the start of Round 2, the Penguins have scored just 3 goals in 27 powerplay attempts.
The defending Stanley Cup champion Pittsburgh Penguins aren't quite ready to surrender their title to the Ottawa Senators.
"We've got to just make sure we keep our eye on the right ball", Sullivan said. I don't think we let too much go over our head.
"I think you've got to play the way that gets you here", Crosby said.
The Pens need to get the puck on the stick of their captain. Not in the first period. However, Crosby has scored only four goals in the playoffs and has not scored since the first game of Pittsburgh's series against Washington.
Having said that, it's only one game. Sidney Crosby and company surely have the depth in the offensive zone but it has been Ottawa who has been better in the defensive zone thanks to Erik Karlsson and the battle between these two superstars will be an exciting narrative to follow as the series unfolds.
Resiliency may be the Penguins' greatest character trait.
Yet again, it was another overtime thriller.
Before his second coming performance in the postseason, Ryan failed to impress during the regular season. Another reason for optimism? Fleury's 62nd playoff win moved him ahead of Henrik Lundqvist for the most by an active goaltender, heady territory for a guy who lost his starting job to Matt Murray during the course of the season. They are running on fumes to some degree because of injuries and a lack of rest but will also realize they can not afford to lose the first two games at home.