Capitals overwhelm Penguins 5-2 to force Game 7

Coming into the winner-take-all matchup in the Eastern Conference semifinal series between the Penguins and Washington Capitals on Wednesday night, there's only one man who can rightfully be called Mr. At stake is a trip to the Eastern Conference final.

"We have no time to waste right now". "We know that's not going to be the exact same story". Andre Burakovsky has been the star of the show, notching three goals over the past two games. "We are anxious about player safety!" and yet it's the playoffs and so he has to play. Since then, he's allowed two goals each in Games 5 and 6.

But Washington was undoubtedly playing the biggest period of the Alex Ovechkin era in Game 5. Cullen assisted on Carolina's first two goals in a 3-1 win over the Edmonton Oilers. In the three games the Caps have won, the Penguins blocked only 17 shots per game.

Crosby returned to the game and played 19 minutes, 57 seconds. That's okay if you're ahead, but it is hard to come back from when trailing especially given Washington's overwhelming shot advantage. And when the puck drops to decide the series, the clear favorite will be the team in red sweaters. [Monday], we weren't able to do any of that. While Burakovsky had been consistently generating scoring chances, he didnt have production at the time, making the change odd on the surface. They won 20 of 28 faceoffs in the first period of Game 6.

"We are having fun now", Washington coach Barry Trotz said. The sixth is when a "Player exhibits any other sign, symptom or behavior that leads Club medical personnel to suspect that a Player has sustained a possible concussion". This is where I think everyone is just giving concussions and their consequences lip service.

Instead, we got an excuse because of the rulebook.

Winning breeds confidence. So while Washington is staring down another potential year where they came up short, blowing a 3-1 series lead might not affect Pittsburgh as much. "I think we can do a better job in front of him". "Those are two different things". Let's face it, those shots are more likely to get blocked before they ever reach Fleury than they are to get on net. It's the result of a study on our actual experiences over a number of years. Not once, but twice between the 2009 and 2016 Stanley Cups, the Penguins blew 3-1 series leads and lost (at home) in Game 7.

If the Capitals have found a hole on the goaltender's glove side they're not saying.

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"All it's going to take is all we have", Trotz said Sunday. I think what you're talking about is the difference between checking with a doctor and entering the concussion protocol. There's no way they should be put in the position where they have to weigh the long-term health of a player between the desire to win a hockey game, particularly in the heat of the moment.

"I'm not sure if momentum exists between games", says Niskanen.

While Holtby is heating up, Marc-Andre Fleury is cooling down. Despite the blowout in Game 6, they're still right there.

Now, the Capitals have the defending champs facing elimination as well. The problem is, at least in this series, the Penguins' offense has seemingly become dependent on those counters.

"Sid, you have had multiple concussions and you are going to have more serious issues later on in life". And we still have our back against the wall.

"We gave ourselves the opportunity to continue to play hockey".

It should be a Game 7 for the ages. It's its own entity. It's our turn to serve, and holding serve means that we go on.

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