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ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins (W 3-2 OT)

May 1 2017 at 7:41 PM

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https://www.nhl.com/news/washington-capitals-pittsburgh-penguins-game-3-preview/c-289203114

5 Keys: Capitals at Penguins, Game 3
Washington hoping for rebound from goalie Braden Holtby; Pittsburgh waiting on status of forward Patric Hornqvist
by Wes Crosby / NHL.com Correspondent
1:28 PM Share

CAPITALS at PENGUINS

7:30 p.m. ET; NBCSN, CBC, TVA Sports

Pittsburgh leads best-of-7 series 2-0

PITTSBURGH -- After winning the first two games on the road, the Pittsburgh Penguins return to PPG Paints Arena for Game 3 with a chance to take a 3-0 lead against the Washington Capitals in the Eastern Conference Second Round.

The Capitals are behind in the series despite controlling play during large portions of Games 1 and 2. After losing 6-2 in Game 2 at Verizon Center on Saturday, though, the Capitals will need the result, not just the puck possession, to go their way in Game 3.

Here are 5 keys for Game 3:



1. Can Braden Holtby rebound?

The Capitals pulled Holtby after he allowed three goals on 14 shots in the first two periods of Game 2. Despite that lackluster performance, which came after he surrendered three goals on 21 shots in Game 1, Holtby will get another chance Monday.

"We trust him," Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin said. "We know if the big moment is coming he's going to be the best. He is the best."

Through two games this series Holtby has an .829 save percentage. If the Capitals hope to win in Pittsburgh, they'll need their franchise goalie to improve quickly.


2. Patric Hornqvist, Carl Hagelin and Brian Dumoulin are questionable for Penguins

Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said Hornqvist, Hagelin and Dumoulin would be game-time decisions after each missed the morning skate Monday.

Hornqvist, Pittsburgh's first-line right wing, left Game 2 after blocking a shot by Capitals defenseman John Carlson with his leg with 4:18 remaining in the first period. He has five points (two goals, three assists) in seven playoff games.

"He does a lot of little things," forward Sidney Crosby said. "I think just the level of us competing has to be a little higher here [without Hornqvist]."

The injuries for Hagelin and Dumoulin were not disclosed. Hagelin played 11:36 in Game 2, his first game since March 10 because of a lower-body injury.



3. The Capitals must capitalize on chances

During the first period in Game 2, the Capitals dominated the action and seemed to be on their way to tying the series 1-1. The Penguins survived the flurry and escaped the first period with the game 0-0 despite being outshot 16-5.

The Penguins' ability to withstand poor starts also was showcased in the Eastern Conference First Round, where the Columbus Blue Jackets routinely outplayed them early. The Capitals will need to capitalize on their chances in a way the Blue Jackets weren't able to or they will watch the Penguins take a 3-0 series lead, like the Blue Jackets did.



4. Can Jake Guentzel remain hot?

Guentzel was a relative unknown entering the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Through seven games, he has made a name for himself playing left wing on Crosby's line.

The 22-year-old rookie has seven goals in his first seven playoff games. The list of players to do that includes Maurice Richard with the 1944 Montreal Canadiens and Dino Ciccarelli with the 1981 Minnesota North Stars.

"I think we have to be at our best tonight," Guentzel said. "They're going to push back."


5. Washington attempting to have fun

Following their Game 2 loss, the Capitals held a closed-door meeting. Coach Barry Trotz on Monday called the meeting "perfect," because to him, it exemplified his team's growth throughout the past year.

Trotz said he feels Washington's maturity has kept it from becoming "paralyzed' at any point during the first two games. He expects the same Monday.

"As a coach, you want your group to take complete ownership," Trotz said. "All we can do is look forward to tonight and enjoy this. It's actually quite fun. Playoffs are fun."



Capitals projected lineup

Alex Ovechkin -- Nicklas Backstrom -- T.J. Oshie

Marcus Johansson -- Evgeny Kuznetsov -- Justin Williams

Andre Burakovsky -- Lars Eller -- Tom Wilson

Daniel Winnik -- Jay Beagle -- Paul Carey

Nate Schmidt -- John Carlson

Dmitry Orlov -- Matt Niskanen

Brooks Orpik -- Kevin Shattenkirk

Braden Holtby

Philipp Grubauer

Scratched: Brett Connolly, Taylor Chorney, Chandler Stephenson

Injured: Karl Alzner (upper body)



Penguins projected lineup

Jake Guentzel -- Sidney Crosby -- Bryan Rust

Chris Kunitz -- Evgeni Malkin -- Phil Kessel

Scott Wilson -- Nick Bonino -- Conor Sheary

Tom Kuhnhackl -- Matt Cullen -- Carter Rowney

Ian Cole -- Justin Schultz

Olli Maatta -- Trevor Daley

Mark Streit -- Ron Hainsey

Marc-Andre Fleury

Tristan Jarry

Scratched: Chad Ruhwedel

Injured: Matt Murray (lower body), Kris Letang (upper body), Patric Hornqvist (undisclosed), Carl Hagelin (undisclosed), Brian Dumoulin (undisclosed)



Status report

Alzner (upper body) will be a game-time decision. He skated on a fourth defense pair with Chorney at the morning skate. Stephenson was recalled from Hershey of the American Hockey League on Monday. He had three shots on goal in four regular-season games. … Murray skated on his own this morning without equipment, Sullivan said. He has not practiced since sustaining a lower-body injury in warmups before Game 1 of the first round. Kuhnhackl and Hainsey are expected to play Monday. They each left Game 2 after blocking a shot.



Who's hot

Malkin had two points (one goal, one assist) in Game 2. He leads the NHL in playoff scoring with 13 points (three goals, 10 assists). … Backstrom had two points (one goal, one assist) in Game 2. He has eight points (three goals, five assists) in the playoffs.


    
This message has been edited by reallycrowesnest on May 2, 2017 2:48 AM


 
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crowesnest
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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 7:43 PM 


 
 

crowesnest
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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 7:58 PM 

Alzner back, Hornqvist playing...

Crosby hit high 14:36, Pens to the 5:00 PP, Niskanen gone for the night... even NBC crew says 5:00 is BS, as is the game, but it was a stick to the head... my take, it wasn't even Niskanen- SC gets Orlov (I think)'s stick in the head first as he passes. Could be wrong, only saw one angle at full speed.

Pens penalty after about a minute, so 4 on 4 to make up for the BS...



    
This message has been edited by reallycrowesnest on May 1, 2017 8:38 PM


 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 8:03 PM 

4 on 4 killed, so back on the PP for the Pens... killed and back to ES, but a post, Holtby, and Winnik save the day before it expired.

 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 8:11 PM 

8:32 left 1st, Caps to the PP now on a Hagelin high stick... 1:17 left in the PP, and it becomes a 5 on 3 for delay...

Backstrom with :23 left of 5 on 3, so still 1:00 on the PP... killed, ES.


 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 8:14 PM 

The Backstrom goal went off Fleury's stick, to Cole's stick, to the back of the net... team is playing well, considering the circumstances. Crosby still in the room, I presume getting the concussion check.

 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 8:21 PM 

:07 left, Holtby big save on a wide open shot...

1-0 Caps, end 1st.

 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 8:37 PM 

Replay from another angle shows it was Ovechkin, not Orlov, that got SC in the head with a stick first- He looked like he was going down already, passing in front of Holtby, and as he was landing on his back Niskanen kind of crosschecked him in the face. I could see the 5:00 call, really but the game is just egregious.

Caps did more than Pens in the 1st, got to keep it up for 40:00 more.

 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 8:39 PM 

2nd on, no Crosby... probably not back tonight...

 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 8:43 PM 

Caps dominate for :58... Pens come down and score, but Kunitz makes contact with Holtby...

unbelievable call. Good goal.

1-1

 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 8:45 PM 

Trotz with the challenge... overturned! No goal!

 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 8:55 PM 

Bura almost, no angle... Sheary gets crushed- by Hornqvist, Eller dodged the hit... 5:34 gone 2nd...

 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 8:55 PM 

Bura almost, no angle... Sheary gets crushed- by Hornqvist, Eller dodged the hit... 5:34 gone 2nd...

 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 9:24 PM 

Cap in the box, 13:48 left 2nd... killed, only 1 SOG on it, and Rust lost and edge, hit the boards, and limped to the bench, so he's hurt, too... Rust is back... Kuz trips him, Pens to the PP with 7:51 left 2nd...

killed... now Kuz gets called for a hold, back on the PK... killed at 2:43 left 2nd, great work...

announcer says Holtby with 16 slot saves alone tonight to this point... Fleury glove at 1:49... sure could use an insurance goal, the way this game is going...

Caps get a goal waved off (good call), play continues...

1-0 Caps, end 2nd.

Nailbiter.


 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 9:43 PM 

Pens lead most stats, but I'd say the Caps have played well considering...

here we go, 3rd on... no Crosby...

let's go, Caps!!

 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 9:58 PM 

Caps to the PP, 17:33 left reg... killed... Caps were going to a PP, but Wilson thugs it up... but Malkin took one too, so it's a PP Caps again... killed...

11:51 left reg...




 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 10:04 PM 

10:14...

YES!! 2-0!!

Kuz from a great pass!!

 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 10:22 PM 

5:00 left reg... TV timeout 3:22 left... EN... icing Caps at 2:55...

Malkin at 1:53, it's 2-1...

1:34 left reg... EN... 1:25, out of play...

2-2. Damn.


 
 

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Re: ECSF Game 3 at Pittsburgh Penguins

May 1 2017, 10:24 PM 

OT.

I'll check in the morning.

 
 
 
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