TONY COCCAGNA: Penguins still in control of first-round series

The Pittsburgh Penguins scored early, and when they tallied, it was often on the way to a 5-2 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets in Game 5 of the opening round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at PPG PAINTS Arena in Pittsburgh Thursday night.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (AP) - After posting two of the top four records in the National Hockey League in the regular season, the Chicago Blackhawks and Columbus Blue Jackets both need to find out a way to get a win on the road or their playoff runs will end nearly as soon as they began.

Pittsburgh's 5-4 overtime victory in Game 3 on Sunday saw rookie Jake Guentzel tally a hat trick, including the game-winning goal at the 13:10 mark of the extra session.

Sergei Bobrovsky had 27 saves to help the Blue Jackets get their first playoff win in three years and their first-ever in regulation.

Nashville will face the victor of the St. Louis-Minnesota series in the second round.

They got stellar goaltending from Marc-Andre Fleury, who stopped 49 of 51 shots. "In Game 3, we couldn't stop them".

A pivotal Game 5 is Thursday in Edmonton, and the series is guaranteed to return to the South Bay for Game 6 on Saturday.

"There's lots of areas where I know we can improve, get better", coach Mike Sullivan said. Penguins RW Phil Kessel and D Trevor Daley, who did not practice Wednesday, were in the lineup. Calvert didn't want to talk about the play Monday, but he did say it wasn't payback for anything that happened in the game.

NASHVILLE 4, CHICAGO 1 - Roman Josi scored twice, Pekka Rinne had 30 saves and the Nashville Predators beat the Chicago Blackhawks 4-1 on Thursday night to complete a surprising sweep of the Western Conference's top seed.

Moments before Game 1 against Columbus, the narrative changed. He missed the last two games of the series due to a broken cheekbone.

Mika Zibanejad scored at 14:22 of overtime to give NY a win at Montreal in Game 5 of their first-round series.

"They've got some odd goals, and that sometimes can play in your mind a little bit and we fought through that", Trotz said Thursday. Boone Jenner would score the eventual game-winner five minutes into the third.

"We're all excited here tonight", Columbus winger Brandon Saad said. We kept climbing back. "He's stepped up to the plate and delivered for three games straight".

Pavelski scored on a pair of deflections, including one just 15 seconds into the game for the fastest playoff goal in team history, the previously dormant power play scored four times and San Jose held Connor McDavid off the score sheet for the second consecutive game.

The irascible veteran was brought in to reboot the culture after the team lost its first seven games last season. "In these one-goal hockey games, we have to stick one in the net". San Jose is just 1 for 14 on the power play this series and has scored on just three of 83 shots.

"You earn your bounces, and they were better" Penguins star forward Sidney Crosby said.

  • Julie Sanders