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Published: Mon, May 22, 2017
Sport | By Billy Aguilar

Pittsburgh Penguins even Eastern Conference final with victory in Game 4

Pittsburgh Penguins even Eastern Conference final with victory in Game 4

"That's been a hard decision for this coaching staff all year long", he said. Marc-Andre Fleury has allowed 37 goals on 490 shots faced and Matt Murray has given up three goals on 46 shots.

He was the team's intended started heading into the postseason but suffered a groin injury while warming up prior to their first playoff game. "After the game, we were fine".

The red light behind the Penguins' goal was conspicuously dark to start Game 4 - especially compared to the rapid-fire opening of Game 3 at the Canadian Tire Centre. The first two games against the Penguins weren't representative of how the Senators have played this season. While Edmonton was defeated decisively in the most recent game (6-3 at home on Sunday), they have not lost consecutive games since March 12. Coming off of the high from game three's win, expect Josi to come out flying again tonight.

Then in Game 5, the Senators found themselves in a similar position, down a goal in the final minutes. Ian Cole immediately throttled Ryan as Ruhwedel lay down on the ice before wobbling his way to the dressing room. Fleury wasn't responsible for either but the rout was on.

Game 1: One goal in more than three periods.

How Murray handles his first starting assignment in more six weeks will certainly be a focus for Pittsburgh in Game 4, but the club's offence is also a priority.

With their third goal in 2:18, the @Senators have their fastest trio of tallies in franchise playoff history.

The Senators are only two wins away from their first trip to the Cup final in 10 years. Wednesday was a peak at what the Penguins now are if they don't get elite goaltending every night.

Having two Stanley Cup-winning goalies doesn't make the decision any easier on whom to start. Both Fleury or Murray will be left out to dry.

It will be Matt Murray between the pipes when the Penguins and Ottawa Senators meet in the crucial Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals.

Notes: Pittsburgh wingers Patric Hornqvist and Bryan Rust and defenseman Justin Schultz all have upper-body injuries and are day-to-day. Trevor Daley, another usually strong puck-moving defenseman, is obviously less than 100 percent too.

"There's so many good players nowadays that can score very easily or make plays with not much time and space - that's really what we try and focus on in here is to key in on their good guys and not give them odd-man rushes", Ottawa's Mike Hoffman said. The Penguins needed a win Friday to pull even in the best-of-seven series. Scoring is a much bigger issue than goaltending.

With Murray answering Pittsburgh questions in goal, it was up to the star-studded forwards to start responding with goals. Honestly, this isn't even a debate.

That was all for Fleury last night. "It's not going to go 16 games in a row perfectly".

Well, it's virtually the same but in reverse.

But spare a thought for Fleury, who has always been one of the better soldiers in the National Hockey League.

Here's some advice, albeit incredibly unsolicited, for Sullivan: You got to go with Fleury on Friday. Why? Had he not gotten hurt, Murray would have been the starter the whole way. Sullivan would be making the same error turning to Murray for Game 4. He should receive the opportunity to prove Wednesday was a fluke. Penguins coach Mike Sullivan mercifully signaled for Fleury to come off the ice after the Senators had scored four times in nine shots against him in a few ticks under 13 minutes. He wouldn't share what he relayed to the longtime Pittsburgh netminder.

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