Published: Fri, May 12, 2017
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

Penguins shut out Capitals in Game 7, advance to East final

Penguins shut out Capitals in Game 7, advance to East final

Unlike a year ago, when the Capitals made only minor tweaks at the trading deadline, they went all in to win a championship this spring, by acquiring the most heavily sought-after rental in the market, defenceman Kevin Shattenkirk.

Meanwhile, the Penguins will take goals where they can get them, as they look to advance to another conference finals, and hope to repeat as Stanley Cup champions. Right now, two short series with travel, four games, six games, it's nearly too good to be true.

Game 1 is at PPG Paints Arena on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; NBC, SN, CBC, TVA Sports). He already suffered a concussion in Game 3 of the series, and took another vicious blow to the head in Game 6, as he crashed head-first into the boards.

Ducks coach Randy Carlyle didn't blame Gibson and said it's about the entire team being better. "Now it boils down to one".

"That's just something that unfortunately for me and my career and for a lot of these guys", Oshie said. It's our turn to serve, and holding serve means that we go on. "He was huge for us all series long".

He clings to those moments - Dale Hunter's Game 7 breakaway against Ron Hextall in 1988, or Joel Ward's victor against Boston in 2012. Trotz doesn't think it'll have anything to do with history.

Asked about Ovechkins game, Capitals coach Barry Trotz said: “Emotionally, I dont want to answer that right now.”. "We can't think to ourselves that because those two games went in our favor that tonight's going to automatically do that". In Game 5, he skated his butt off, ran into people, he was a bull in a china shop again and got rewarded with a goal. "One of the things about being a captain is that you have to worry about everybody else first, to be a good captain".

For Pittsburgh, the Game 7 victory certainly did not come easy, as goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury was forced to make countless big-time saves in order to keep the Capitals off the scoreboard. Neither Ovechkin nor Crosby entered Game 7 at their peaks, the way they did in 2009.

Whenever a team has a heavy advantage in terms of Corsi and loses, the instincts of most people are to assume that their opponents were brilliant defensively, keeping risky chances down and the good Corsi team is just piling up shots from the perimeter. "Based on (Monday) night I don't see any reason why they won't".

Pittsburgh improved to 6-0 in road Game 7s while Washington fell to 3-8 when hosting.

The NHL's conference finals are set following a pair of Game 7s on Wednesday night. The Capitals had a chance to clear the zone, but the puck was kept in at the blue line and moved to Sidney Crosby.

Scott Wilson and Carter Rowney haven't been used much during this series, but there is something to be said for the fact that the team has won with them.

On Wednesday, Murray suited up from the first time since then to serve as Fleurys backup.

Ovechkin finished the playoffs dealing with a lower-body injury that required pain-numbing injections, the Russian Hockey Federation said in noting that Ovechkin would not be able to play for Russia at the world championships in Europe because of it. Since the NHL added fines and the public shaming for embellishment before the 2014-15 season, director of hockey operations Colin Campbell said, incidents that get reviewed by the league office are down sharply, from 35-40 incidents per week in 2014-15 to just 20-25 this season.

Justin Williams stood at the end of the Capitals' locker room at Kettler, waiting for the media to gather in front of him.

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