Penguins' Hagelin a game-time decision for Game 2 vs. Caps

Crosby has won both of his previous playoff series (in 2009 and 2016) against Ovechkin-and gone on to win the Stanley Cup each time, even though Ovechkin personally scored more goals.

"It wasn't a situation where we had chance after chance after chance and I think we got some good looks and we put them in", Crosby said. "But I think you have to give credit to our opponents, as well".

After winning twice in Washington, the Penguins host Game 3 on Monday night. Malkin had a goal and an assist on Saturday.

Matt Cullen was in the playoffs with the Carolina Hurricanes in 2009 but he remembers watching the first time Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin met in the playoffs.

"Obviously, it's never where you want to be", Holtby said.

Pittsburgh Penguins center Evgeni Malkin (71), of Russian Federation, skates with the puck against Washington Capitals center Nicklas Backstrom (19), of Sweden, during the first period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup second-round playoff series, Thursday, April 27, 2017, in Washington.

After the game, Holtby said, "I expect to start every game until I'm told otherwise".

"We just had to change the mojo".

Maybe the Penguins should have taken a page out of the Ottawa Senators' book when it comes to making the officials recognize there's too many men on the ice.

"Playoffs are made of big moments", the goalie explained, per Brian McNally of 106.7 The Fan.

The Capitals dominated the first period, but couldn't beat Fleury.

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Said defenseman Brooks Orpik: "We probably should stop giving up breakaways and two-on-ones and help him out a little bit".

"We came off and then got out there again".

That'll go up, though, as he works his way back to 100 percent.

When Backstrom won a puck battle in the corner, Niskanen answered right back 54 seconds later with a power-play goal to tie it.

The Senators have a 2-0 series lead for just the second time in franchise history, and first since the 2007 Eastern Conference final against Buffalo.

"Especially when teams try to play a real aggressive game against us, I think our counterattack can be very risky and effective", the coach said on a teleconference on Sunday.

The Capitals, even though they were the less rested team, outplayed Pittsburgh in Game 1. The four teams that played Saturday combined to have only two power-play goals.

Phil Kessel, Penguins - Kessel was Pittsburgh's sharpshooter to lead the way in the blowout victory on Saturday.

Mike Yeo, whose St. Louis Blues went 3-0 on the road in upsetting the Minnesota Wild in the first round, credits his team's play away from home late in the regular season as a big reason for this continued success.

Bearing down on goal in the third period of a 2-2 game, Pittsburgh Penguins forward Nick Bonino kept things simple, and it worked.

"We played really, really well in the first period, didn't get rewarded", Niskanen said. Pittsburgh LW Carl Hagelin remained out with a lower-body injury that has sidelined him since mid-March. To make room for Hagelin, Pittsburgh F Scott Wilson was a scratch. The Penguins' backup goaltender drew the starting nod eight minutes before the opening game against Columbus and has been stellar. Climbing out of that will be especially challenging with the next two games in Pittsburgh, and what were once strengths for the team - defense and goaltending - now seem to be weaknesses. If they don't, if they lose the first two games on home ice, then realists in Zip 20004 will know the true odds. Two years ago for the Capitals, he became the first German-born goalie to start an National Hockey League playoff game.