Penguins, Predators each look to seize momentum in Game 5

After the Predators and the Penguins traded goals late in the first period, Gaudreau, whose three career National Hockey League goals have all come in the Stanley Cup Final, poked one under the stick of Matt Murray from behind the net.

Penguins' coach Mike Sullivan made the announcement with no elaboration during his media availability on Thursday.

"It's a game of execution", Crosby said. The Penguins now have a 3-2 series lead. We thought we played a real competitive game in Game 2.Then again, Gaudreau's two goals the past two games equaled the two the Penguins entire team produced during their time in Tennessee, forgettable as it turned out to be.

"As much as it is about skill and speed and all that, it's the work ethic, it's the little things, and I think that's kind of the idea behind that is doing the right thing and working as hard as we can", Ellis said. Nashville was 2 of 3 on the power play in Game 3. The victor of this game will be just one win away from the Stanley Cup.

"They both have their hands full", Laviolette said.

"'Desperate' is a amusing word for me because it gets thrown around our game a lot", Sullivan said. He was shaky in the Penguins' 5-3 win in Game 1, pulled in the Penguins' 4-1 in Game 2, solid in the Predators' 5-1 win in Game 3 and brilliant, particularly in a game-saving, second-period performance in the Predators' 4-1 win in Game 4. We had a clincher previous year at home and we didn't get it done.

Pittsburgh, however, was problematic in the first two games of this series.

The Penguins and Predators have provided plenty of drama, from the roller-coaster play of Nashville goaltender Pekka Rinne to the running feud between Pittsburgh captain Sidney Crosby and P.K. Subban. They have an all-time Game 5 record of 20-10 on home ice and will be looking to set a new franchise record by picking up their 10th home win during one postseason. If the Penguins hadn't stolen Game 1, Nashville could be preparing right now to play for the Cup on Thursday.

Game Six of the Cup Final comes Sunday night in Nashville at Bridgestone Arena. A lot of Penguins fans feared the worst until Chris Kunitz came to the rescue with his game-winning goal in double overtime. If he didn't make a change in the game after Murray allowed seven goals to the Washington Capitals in a regular-season game that carried less weight, he was never going to do it now.

The Pittsburgh Penguins needed more from their stars.

"You've got trust what gets you here", Crosby said.

Evgeni Malkin is leading the playoffs in scoring with 26 points, but he hasn't added to that total since Game 2.

"I enjoy it. We have a good group of kids and they don't feel like kids anymore after what they went through and what they did a year ago with Guentzel being the exception", Cullen said. When Ottawa refused to go quietly in Game 6, the series went to a Game 7.

The Penguins road trip can be summed up here: "Smahsville" certainly lived up to the hype, the Penguins really miss Kris Letang and Pekka Rinne is hot again. In Game 1, they scored three times in the last five minutes of the first period en route to a 5-3 victory.

In 12 home playoff games, they have scored twice in a span of three minutes eight times.

Malkin, the second highest producing current player in the post-season after Crosby, wanted to do a better job himself of keeping and shooting the puck more.

  • Julie Sanders