Capitals replace Holtby in goal for 3rd period of Game 2

A minute later, Fleury flailed into several unorthodox contortions to protect a 3-2 lead as a mad scramble developed around his crease. "I think we can use our first period (from Game 2) as a stepping stone and try to multiply that". Defensively, the Pittsburgh Penguins are allowing 2.8 goals per game and are killing 79.8 percent of their power play chances. "Last game it was (Pageau) and that's what makes a really good team a better and stronger team". We're not going to shy away from it. "That's what we expect".

"You watch it all year, he does that all the time", Kessel said. You are getting sleepy.

Of course, this series is far from over, but the Capitals looked completely overmatched in Game 2.

The Capitals' first players-only meeting oddly followed a win. The Caps' chances of advancing, according to National Hockey League history, are 21 percent.

Evgeni Malkin and Matt Cullen each had a goal and an assist, and Sidney Crosby had two assists as Pittsburgh won despite again being outshot, this time 36-24, including 16-5 in the first period. Doesn't that mean that losing Game 1 isn't so important? Something mentioned in these team gatherings is how this is a last chance for this group of players to win together. Plan A - jump ahead of 'em - is toast.

Through eight playoff games this year, Holtby has gone 4-2-2, posting a.911 save mark and 2.62 GAA. The Penguins still need two more. But so are the playoffs in every sport. They capitalized on some of our mistakes in the second, and it changed the game.

Game 2: Blues at Predators, 3 p.m. ET, NBC (Series tied 1-1) - The Predators had won five straight games in the playoffs, sweeping the Blackhawks in the first round and then winning Game 1 of the second-round series. In other words, they do tend to deliver when installed as a big home-ice favorite. Henrik Lundqvist stopped 28 shots. But it took time. Through six games Fleury is at.934.

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"If you don't have the goalies, it's hard to win", Capitals coach Barry Trotz said Friday. "All three [Pens] goals were very preventable". We just can't just put it on Braden Holtby.

However, there was one huge hitch to this kind of analysis. But Trotz was adamant that Game 1 did not represent the start of another "Here we go again" moment in Capitals history. Otherwise, ice won't be back on the floor of the Verizon Centre until September.

Pittsburgh Penguins center Jake Guentzel, center, celebrates his goal with Sidney Crosby (87) and Ian Cole (28) during the second period of Game 2 in an NHL hockey Stanley Cup second-round playoff series against the Washington Cap.

"He'll tell you that he can be better". That played right into the hands of the Penguins, whose counterattack is among the NHL's best.

"I think we've just got to take a deep breath here and realize what we did right in the first period", defenseman Brooks Orpik said. "It's not flawless by any stretch out there".

"That's all we can focus on now - seeing what doesn't work and seeing what we can do better and use that going into Game 3".

The defending NHL-champ Pens entered this series with one edge: rest. He wasn't even Pittsburgh's top option going into the postseason, as Fleury only got the net because Matt Murray got hurt during warmups before the Penguins' first playoff game. However, by Saturday night, that advantage the Pens may have had will presumably be minimized. Because of salary-cap constraints, the Capitals won't be able to re-sign everyone, and the most talented team to surround Backstrom and star forward Alex Ovechkin will inevitably be broken apart.

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