Playoffs

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Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby joined Mario Lemieux and Bernie Parent as the only other players in NHL history to win the Conn Smythe Trophy in back-to-back years. Crosby deserved it, posting eight goals and 27 points in 24 playoff games. But he wasn’t the only member of the Penguins who played at an MVP level.
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It took 213 games, 49 of those playoffs appearances, to make history. It was the 66th playoff series in Penguins history and the 87th game of the 2017 playoffs — some things are just meant to be. Kris Letang hadn’t played since February, they were outshot in more than 70% of games played these playoffs, and
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The Pittsburgh Penguins have played a ridiculous amount of hockey these past two years. After going all the way to a championship in 2016, they barely had enough time to eat French fries out of the Cup before their stars were whisked away for the World Cup of Hockey. Between two four-round postseasons, the World Cup,
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As Yogi Berra first uttered 40 years ago, “It ain’t over ’til it’s over.” Some fans might find it difficult to tune into Game 6 of the Stanley Cup Final on Sunday night after the Pittsburgh Penguins destroyed the Nashville Predators, 6-0, in Game 5. It was no contest from start to finish, as Sidney
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Despite a three-point performance and first star honors in Game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final, Sidney Crosby’s night would be defined by a scrum with P.K. Subban and a water bottle. USA TODAY’s “For The Win” called Crosby’s Game 5 “a night of bad behavior,” and that seems to sum it up. However, many have
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NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman has scheduled an emergency hearing for the entity known as Smashville. The list of violations committed over Games 3 and 4 hosted by the Predators includes Excessive Cheering, Unsportsmanlike Volume and Gathering with Intent to Party. Bettman has vowed to personally show the rowdy Volunteer bunch that there are consequences to
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April 5 was a dark day for Pittsburgh Penguins fans. You probably remember it; that was the day it was announced that Kris Letang, core of the Penguins’ defense, irreplaceable in everything from 5 on 5 play to special teams, would be out for four to six months with a herniated disc in his neck. Ever
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They’ve played over 200 hockey games in the past two seasons, they’re missing one of the world’s best defenseman and they got embarrassed in Game’s 3 & 4 of the Stanley Cup Final against the 16th seeded team in the playoffs. Hockey analysts will try to pinpoint reasons why the Penguins are losing but at the
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The Pittsburgh Penguins’ power play so far this Final has been disappointing, to say the least. They have been held to just three shots, none of them goals, on their last ten man advantages. But the Penguins’ power play issues run even deeper than a lack of scoring. The power play is worse than ineffective
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As the Nashville Predators and Pittsburgh Penguins scratch and claw for supremacy, they’re bound to develop bad blood for one another. But bad breath? Things got personal following the Preds Game 3 win, when the wildly popular P.K. Subban claimed he was the victim of a vicious verbal attack from Penguins’ captain Sidney Crosby. The Penguins’ captain accused the defender
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It may seem like the sky is falling in the Steel City since the Pittsburgh Penguins dropped Game 3 of the Stanley Cup Final in ugly fashion, 5-1, against the Nashville Predators. The fact remains, though, that it was just one loss, and Pittsburgh still controls the series with a 2-1 lead. The Penguins have
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There are certain teams that some players love facing, and then there are other squads that players would really rather never see again. Sometimes these preferences are created because of matchups, and in other cases, there’s no rhyme or reason to it. For Nashville Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne, the team he would love to never
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The Pittsburgh Penguins played their worst game of the 2017 playoffs in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup. Although the Penguins won, they should feel as though they lost and then adjust accordingly. The good news is under coach Mike Sullivan, the Penguins have been the king of adjustments. Sullivan has pressed all the right buttons
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Following Game 1 of the 2017 Stanley Cup Final, Nashville Predators goaltender Pekka Rinne’s stat line—four goals against, .636 save percentage—did not look pretty. But if you add context to his numbers, it wouldn’t be a stretch to say that Rinne played fine, not horribly as his numbers would indicate. Hockey is an odd game
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This is why the NHL playoffs are fun: you never know what’s going to happen. Upsets are more frequent compared to other major sports like the NBA. We are now set for the finals, which features the team with the fewest points among those that qualified for the postseason — the Nashville Predators. Prior to
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The 2017 Stanley Cup Final stage has been set. The Pittsburgh Penguins will try to become the first team since the Detroit Red Wings in 1997-98 to win consecutive Stanley Cups, while the Nashville Predators will try to bring home the Cup in their first try. Offense vs. Defense It promises to be a matchup
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Over the past few years, I’ve looked for clues in the NHL’s regular season that act a strong predictor for the postseason. For those involved in this quest, it’s mostly a case of ‘misery loves company.’ Before the playoffs, I reviewed this article summarizing three detailed predictions, including the odds for each team. The predictor and their
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  With the Stanley Cup Final set to begin Monday evening, previews and predictions aplenty adorn the news sites and forums of the hockey world. Having been a contender for the last decade or so, everyone knows the Pittsburgh Penguins inside and out. But what about the Nashville Predators? Long a team that was just
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It’s hard to find a sport on earth with more superstitions and folklore than hockey. Everything from the stars of the game to beards in the playoffs, the NHL is full of tradition. One of the biggest traditions in the sport is not touching the conference trophy. When the Nashville Predators won the Clarence Campbell Bowl, which
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The Pittsburgh Penguins have dominated the NHL in recent years. With their most modern Stanley Cup championships coming in 2009 and 2016, the Pens also represented the Eastern Conference in the finals in 2008. They have won their division three times since the 2007-08 season. While their championships aren’t as impressive as other sports dynasties
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Nashville Predators coach Peter Laviolette looked calm and collected. He sure didn’t look like he had just carved out a piece of NHL history. Sitting at the podium Monday night, moments after the Predators eliminated the Anaheim Ducks, 6-3, in Game 6 of the Western Conference Finals at Bridgestone Arena, Laviolette spoke in humble overtones.
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The Pittsburgh Penguins had 287 man games lost during the 2016-17 NHL regular season. They saw stars like Evgeni Malkin and Kris Letang go out for extended periods. They still found a way to win and finished the season with 111 points, second most in the NHL. The Penguins also finished the season as the
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Winning in the NHL is anything but easy. When considering how hard it is to win each individual battle within the game while also trying to come out ahead in the games themselves over the course of a season, the difficulyt level increases exponentially. This is why winning a Stanley Cup is something that has
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For the second straight year, the Pittsburgh Penguins have a goaltender controversy in the Eastern Conference Final. Coach Mike Sullivan pulled Marc-Andre Fleury in a 5-1 loss during Game 3. Fleury gave up four goals in the first 13 minutes Wednesday, which allowed Matt Murray to make his first appearance of the postseason. Pittsburgh relied
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The Ottawa Senators deserve credit for their run to the Eastern Conference Final and their ability to take a 2-1 series lead over the defending Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins. They’re a 98-point regular season team and the only group to make the postseason with a negative goal differential (-2). Hardly anyone gave them a
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Welcome aboard, Ryan Johansen. You’re the newest member of the Ryan Kesler fan club — a growing list of NHL players that spend three hours opposing him only to come away agitated. It’s a script we’ve seen before. The two players spent much of the Anaheim Ducks‘ Game 2 victory on Sunday night in a back-and-forth jousting
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Stop freaking out about the Pittsburgh Penguins dropping Game 1 of their series against the Ottawa Senators. Seriously. Yes, the Penguins were at home. Yes, the overtime goal was scored on a bad breakaway that got past a slow Olli Maatta. But that doesn’t call for panic—and it certainly doesn’t call for cutting criticisms of Maatta’s overall
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  The National Hockey League playoffs are supposed to be two months of gruelling, desperate hockey played in the hopes of, come June, sipping champagne from the Stanley Cup – and thereby being forever etched in the annals of hockey lore. Instead, here we are, once again, talking about how the NHL has absolutely zero
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After finally breaking their Game 7 curse, the Anaheim Ducks defeated the Edmonton Oilers and moved on to the Western Conference Final to face the Nashville Predators, the Ducks’ toughest challenge yet. During the regular season, the Ducks had the upper hand against the Preds, winning two of their three match-ups, once in a shootout.
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The Ottawa Senators have been a great story in the 2017 NHL Playoffs. Entering the postseason with the third-lowest point total in the Eastern Conference, they first beat a team with fewer points. Their series win against the Bruins seemed hollow to some also due to Boston’s numerous injuries. Yet the Senators faced a greater
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It was a result that was far from easy to swallow but certainly not one that should have been unexpected. As much as the fans were hoping their Edmonton Oilers could find a way to sneak past the Anaheim Ducks in the seventh game of their second-round series, the clock finally struck midnight on a