The Pittsburgh Penguins took care of business in game 5 of the Stanley Cup Final with a 6-0 thumping against the Nashville Predators. The Penguins came out flying, with the stars leading the way.
Justin Schultz scored early on the powerplay, giving the Pens their first powerplay goal since Game 1 of the series. Bryan Rust continued the charge with a goal of his own that flew over the glove of Predators’ goalie Pekka Rinne. A late first period goal by Evgeni Malkin made it 3-0 Penguins, putting an end to Rinne’s night. Rinne allowed three goals on nine shots, continuing his struggles at PPG Paints Arena.
After having two subpar games in Nashville, Matthew Murray bounced back in Game 5, stopping 24 shots in the shutout. Although the Predators did not have much action on Murray, the rookie looked calm and was square to every shot.
Captain Sidney Crosby was flying in Game 5, looking like he was shot out of a cannon right from the opening puck drop. Crosby had three assists, giving him 27 points in the postseason. The line of Sidney Crosby, Conor Sheary, and Jake Guentzel was reunited in Game 5 and combined for five points. “Sid and the kids” used their speed to their advantage, causing problems for the Nashville defense.
The Russian superstar, who was virtually invisible in Games 3 and 4 in Nashville, carried the play in Game 5. Malkin had a goal, an assist, and a fight in the winning effort, giving him the Gordie Howe hat-trick.
Before Game 5, Malkin took it upon himself to help elevate the team’s play after the Pens only scored two goals over two games in Nashville. Just like P.K. Subban guaranteed a victory for the Predators in Game 3, Malkin did the same for his Penguins.
Phil the thrill
Phil Kessel went six games without scoring a goal, but in Game 5, Kessel delivered, ending his goal drought. Kessel had three points on the night and will look to continue his production in Game 6.
History on the line
The Penguins have the chance to make history on Sunday night in Game 6. The Pens are looking to become the first team since the 1998 Detroit Red Wings to win back to back Stanley Cups.
One year ago, the Penguins were in the same situation as they are in right now. Up 3-2 in the Stanley Cup Final with a chance to win the cup on the road. Game 6 will be tough, it will be a hostile environment, but the Penguins will prevail, bringing another championship to the city of Pittsburgh.