The Nashville Predators Success All Hinges on the Play of Pekka Rinne

Jun 03, 2017, 02:17
The Nashville Predators Success All Hinges on the Play of Pekka Rinne

If anyone would like to shift their attention to the sports world and go through the reams of heights stretching back to the days of James Creighton and his friends from McGill University who are often credited with playing the first indoor hockey game in 1875, you will find that heights in hockey have jumped as well.

Rookie Jake Guentzel promptly scored his second goal of the game just 10 seconds into the third, the first of three Pittsburgh goals in a span of 3:18, leading the Penguins to a 4-1 win over the Nashville Predators in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final at PPG Paints Arena.

The Pittsburgh Penguins have skated away from the Nashville Predators and Pekka Rinne in the third period of Game 2.

He delivered an All-Star guarantee for Saturday night.

"I feel even more confident now that I've had a night of rest", Subban told reporters Thursday, according to NHL.com. "We're going to win the next game, and then we'll move forward".

But after Evgeni Malkin buzzed the fourth goal over Rinne's glove and coach Peter Laviolette summoned backup Juuse Saros in relief, the question is whether the 34-year-old franchise bedrock will get another chance. "Like I said, I think there's things we can do better". "I thought the last half of the game we came back pretty good on the face-offs". "So it starts Saturday". You don't need to commission a study to know that no one who resembles Zdeno Chara was involved in the early years of the game. After Pekka Rinne bounced a wild rebound off a Bryan Rust shot into the center of the ice, Guentzel finished into a gaping net to put Pittsburgh up 2-1. For comparison, a year ago through two games of the Stanley Cup Final, only eight penalties combined were called.

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It doesn't matter how well the offense plays, how many shots they put on the Penguins' goal, or how the six defenders play; the success of this team hinges exclusively on the play of the goalie.

His save percentage has dipped throughout the playoffs -.976 against Chicago, then.932 against St. Louis and.925 in the West finals against Anaheim.

The Penguins matched their entire shot total from the opener (12) by the end of the first period but still found themselves trying to keep up with the Predators. "For the majority of the playoffs, all but maybe five or six periods, that's out of over 50 periods, our guys have played really well". "He's a pass-first, shoot-second player", said Mike. But that could be a good thing. Guentzel has five game-winners, the most in history by a first-year player. "And certain parts of the game where we got to help him out". But Rinne's play in the biggest games of his career has been a major storyline, too, for all the wrong reasons.

"There's nothing that can replace Peks", Ellis said.

Only if Rinne turns back into Rinne. The Predators are 7-1 at home in this postseason. The Predators are now trailing the Penguins two games to none in the 2017 Stanley Cup Final series.

"They were throwing a lot of pucks at the net", Penguins captain Sidney Crosby said. "It's a fun atmosphere to play".

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As for Murray, there are no doubts he will continue to give Pittsburgh a chance to win.

The Penguins scored three goals in a four-minute flurry late in the first period of Game One for a 3-0 lead before hanging on for a 5-3 victory.

Ninety percent of teams with that advantage have gone on to win the Cup.

A team like Nashville isn't your typical Stanley Cup contender, which is why this series has been so choppy and awkward.

Pittsburgh coach Mike Sullivan is shuffling his lines for Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final against the Predators. The Penguins lost 5-1 in Nashville last October, and the atmosphere will be much more intense this time around with a forecast that could include fan-tossed catfish. A couple of days ago, he was anxious about being in the lineup and now he's got 12 goals in the National Hockey League playoffs, and you read Twitter and you see the pictures and see things being said, that he's this and he's that and he's broke this record and broke that record. "That's where our focus is going to be".

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