Saturday, 20 October, 2018

Pittsburgh coach's challenge is first in Stanley Cup Final

Isaac Mcdaniel | 31 May, 2017, 00:56

Pittsburgh was outshot 26-12 - it had no shots in the second period and for most of the third - but goaltender Matt Murray stopped 23 of the Predators' attempts.

The Penguins are extremely fortunate to be heading into Wednesday's Game 2 with a series lead.

The dynasty that once appeared so certain is again in the offing for the Pittsburgh Penguins.

They had a goal waved off.

Taking a look at past Stanley Cup winners, the last time a team won back-to-back Cups was in 1997 and 1998.

And then things settled down.

Pekka Rinne - The backbone of Nashville's playoff run allowed four goals on just 11 shots in a 5-3 Game One loss at Pittsburgh, dropping his save percentage from.941 to.934 in this year's playoffs.

PITTSBURGH-The dead catfish that some poor soul purchased and smuggled into the building and threw onto the ice to explode near the Nashville blue line probably would have been thrown no matter what happened in the game, because you don't stash a dead catfish in your trousers or somewhere for half an hour and then just leave it under your seat. The defending Cup champions then didn't have a shot for exactly 37 minutes as the Predators roared back to tie the score at 3.

The Penguins almost blew a 3-0 lead, one compounded by an terrible offensive effort in the middle part of the game, before Jake Guentzel saved it with a goal at 16:43 of the third period.

Although the Predators lost Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final on Monday night, they showed how effective their possession-positive play can be against the mighty Pittsburgh Penguins.

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"It was a different game", Rinne said. "I knew we were doing a good job defensively, but I wasn't looking at the time (that Pittsburgh had gone without a shot)".

Evgeni Malkin, Conor Sheary and Nick Bonino all got in on the action early on, scoring back-to-back-to-back goals in a span of roughly four minutes to showcase the Pens' ever-threatening offense and put the defending champs up 3-0.

So far five goals have been overturned by coach's challenges or league-initiated video review in the 2017 playoffs.

It would have been fitting for the Nashville Predators P.K. Subban to score the first goal in the 2017 Stanley Cup Final.

"The impact of that moment, then the chain of events that happened after that with the penalty kills I think changed the course of the game", said Laviolette, who nevertheless did not agree with suggestions that the Penguins had stolen victory. "Being down 3-0 to the Stanley Cup champions, coming back and tying it up with an opportunity to win the hockey game is definitely something to build on".Through the first two rounds of the playoffs, Nashville G Pekka Rinne has also been much more consistent than Anaheim's 24-year-old John Gibson. His goals-against average is 1.83 and his save percentage is.934. May.

It seemed the Penguins got a shot of adrenalin and quickly added two more goals in the opening period. "We weren't very good", said Pittsburgh coach Mike Sullivan. The Predators were hardly intimidated. But Nashville entered the Stanley Cup Final playing comfortably and confidently, poise that was on display during points of the second and third periods. Eventually, they got on the board 8:21 into the period on the power play, when Ryan Ellis blasted a wrist shot past a screened Matt Murray.

To the Predators' credit, they demonstrated plenty of resilience and dictated play throughout the final two periods.

The Penguins were held shotless in the second period, the first timee in Finals history a team went through a single period without a shot.

The game felt over, and yet, the Pens had three goals on just eight shots.

Maybe that was why he was beaten by Guentzel's shot.

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