Hoffman's goal helps Senators beat Penguins to force Game 7

Hoffman's goal helps Senators beat Penguins to force Game 7

The Eastern Conference final has come down to a one game, winner-take-all battle between the Ottawa Senators and Pittsburgh Penguins.

Ottawa Senators defenceman Marc Methot (3) takes down Pittsburgh Penguins centre Sidney Crosby (87) during the third period of game six of the Eastern Conference final in the NHL Stanley Cup hockey playoffs in Ottawa on Tuesday, May 23, 2017.

The aforementioned dark clouds aside, there were several intriguing on-ice story lines.

"We play (the) same game", he said about the upcoming Game 7, according to DK Pittsburgh Sports, "we win". Could they be effective?

Power-play breakthrough: It took a two-man advantage but the Senators finally scored a power-play goal, their first of the series.

Ryan tied the score at 13:15 of the second. Boucher made the move (twice) to protect Anderson when the game was out of reach and it was at that point that the IL native turned the page and started to look ahead. Whether you play five minutes or 20 minutes, it doesn't matter. Boucher has had them share what they've been through, but in the end he believes simplicity is key. Let's say that again, the Under cashes nearly 70 percent of the time in Game 7's.

A screened Penguins goalie Matt Murray had no chance. The Senators will likely try to keep him uncomfortable for Game 7 in Pittsburgh, though officials might be quicker to call anything so blatant. On the whole, Ottawa was outplayed tonight. They simply could not have been worse. It hasn't happened yet, though, and it's now or never time for the Senators' captain.

But also, sometimes, a goalie simply steals a game for you.

Have a great hump day, everybody, and kick back with some baseball tonight. Murray faced only 12 shots after the first period.

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The Pens looked to have opened the scoring just over three minutes into the second, but Trevor Daley was deemed to have interfered with Anderson following an Ottawa challenge. Bobby Ryan evened things up later in the second on his sixth playoff score.

Sullivan declined to elaborate on his decision shortly after announcing it hours before game-time, but Murray kept justifying it with his play in the first half of an opening period that saw the Sens - wearing small Canadian flags on their helmets - mostly in control.

Pittsburgh was down a pair of defensemen when Ron Hainsey went off for interference and Ian Cole picked up two minutes for high-sticking just 36 seconds later.

Mike Hoffman scored the victor 1 minute, 34 seconds into the third period, Bobby Ryan picked up his sixth goal of the playoffs, and Craig Anderson made 45 saves.

The Sens' 0-for-29 powerplay goalless streak was over. Big points to Claesson for jumping into the rush as he did as well.

The rest of the third was largely spent defending the slimmest of margins. It seems that the experience of its players helped to enjoy the victory. "So as a group, we go into it with a lot of confidence, knowing that we're going to need our best game and expecting that we'll bring it". As the final seconds ticked away, Sens fans were probably alternating between gasping for breath and screaming their lungs out. "I really liked a lot of our game".

"He was an honest and hard working", Terry said. It didn't look good on Anderson and he had been solid up until that shot beat him.

Pittsburgh applied plenty of pressure as the third period progressed, but Anderson was an immovable force in net. There's different ways to win. "We don't want to give up that much zone time".

Clarke MacArthur had his game face on well before the puck dropped Tuesday. The atmosphere was incredible; kudos to everyone that made it so.