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Penguins end Predators magical postseason run

12 June 2017

With the win, the Penguins won the best-of-seven series four games to two and became the first team to win a second consecutive Stanley Cup since the Detroit Red Wings defended their National Hockey League title in 1998.

Matt Murray of the Pittsburgh Penguins celebrates with teammates after they defeated the Nashville Predators 2-0 to win the 2017 NHL Stanley Cup Final.

The Pittsburgh captain led the Cup final in scoring with a goal and seven points in six games and finished second in scoring during the post-season with eight goals and 27 points in 25 games.

Pittsburgh Penguin fans have plenty to be excited about after their team won their second-straight Stanley Cup. Fellow Swede Carl Hagelin iced this victory with an empty-netter with 14 seconds remaining. The Penguins are now the first team to win back-to-back Cups in the salary cap era.

When the Pittsburgh Penguins won the Stanley Cup, Sidney Crosby was once again the first to lift it. "We've got a collection of guys who understand what it takes to win".

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It would have counted had referee Kevin Pollock not blown his whistle prematurely, costing the Preds an important 1-0 lead on a night when goals were so hard to come from.

"You come to the rink every day and you get to play with him, so it's special", said the 22-year-old rookie.

A little good fortune also benefited Murray, particularly on Sunday night when Nashville was counting on goalie Pekka Rinne to be his usual dominating self at home. But, with Murray injured, Fleury played a pivotal role in getting the Penguins through the first two rounds, including a second-round defeat of the Capitals.

Chris Kunitz (up) - The veteran Pittsburgh forward has won the Stanley Cup four times, three times with Pittsburgh and once with the Anaheim Ducks.

The Penguins had a 9-8 edge in shots to open Game 6, while the Predators failed to capitalize on the only power-play opportunity with 6:46 left, when Ian Cole was sent off for interference.

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"Sid is obviously an unbelievable player", said Phil Kessel, who has won in each of the two years since coming to Pittsburgh in a trade from Toronto.

He then helped Canada win Olympic gold again and defeat Russian Federation for its first IIHF Ice Hockey World Championship in eight years in 2015 in the Czech Republic, led Pittsburgh to victory over the San Jose Sharks in the 2016 Stanley Cup final, and won the 2016 World Cup of Hockey versus Team Europe.

It ends the deepest playoff run in Predators history. Nashville roared back at home to even things up, but the Penguins routed Nashville to set up Game 6. The problem is that we'll never quite know - because they never reviewed it. The Penguins also killed off 32 seconds of a 5-on-3 at 8:47 of the third after Trevor Daley punched Ryan Ellis with Olli Maatta already in the box for tripping.

Team New Zealand regained its speed on the short reach to the finish, had a better angle to the line and held off the Swedish boat by one second to improve to 4-2 in the best-of-nine series.

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