Kunitz's double-OT goal sends Penguins back to Stanley Cup

Kunitz's double-OT goal sends Penguins back to Stanley Cup

Kunitz's double-OT goal sends Penguins back to Stanley Cup

And now it's the 16th-seeded Nashville Predators, who lost their No. 1 and 2 centres in the conference final, against the defending champs, who lost their No. 1 defenceman halfway through the season.

Chris Kunitz scored his second goal of the game at 5:09 in double overtime to send the Pittsburgh Penguins to the Stanley Cup Finals with a thrilling 3-2 win over the Ottawa Senators in Game Seven of their Eastern Conference Finals on Thursday. While that bit of information has been circulating, no one (save for the Ottawa Sun) seems to be spending time pointing to the fact that the Senators have never won a Game 7. It's not like they didn't challenge Ottawa hard in game six, as they had 45 shots on Craig.

"Well, I think just, obviously, the finality of it", he said. But they'll have to finish off Pittsburgh to get there. He also won a Stanley Cup with Boston in 2011 and delivered an inspirational speech to the Senators on Tuesday ahead of a 2-1 Game 6 win.

PITTSBURGH (AP) - The Pittsburgh Penguins kept getting by even as their star players kept skating off the ice in pain. Going to back-to-back finals is rare in the last two decades. "It's relief, and it's excitement to know you're moving on and playing in the Stanley Cup Finals". The Devils then made the final again in 2001, losing to Colorado. Too exhausted from last spring's Cup run. Sullivan took over in Pittsburgh in December 2015 and provided the edge the Penguins so desperately needed, becoming the sixth USA -born coach to win it all. They've done this. Considering all they've gone through to get back, they have every intention of doing it again.

"When (Crosby) drives it deep, everyone (on the opposing team) gets scared, and you find the soft area", Kunitz said. "We don't really look at it as back-to-back". This team overcame Anderson's wife Nicholle's cancer, the return of Clarke MacArthur from his two years of concussions, the cancer of former GM Bryan Murray. "This situation, it's not something that happens very often, so it's a great opportunity for us". For the city, it surely is.

And it nearly didn't happen.

Crosby has 20 points in 18 games this postseason, second in the National Hockey League behind teammate Evgeni Malkin.

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In the third period, the pace stayed electric.

Pittsburgh Penguins forward Patric Hornqvist and defenceman Justin Schultz have both been ruled game-time decisions by head coach Mike Sullivan for Thursday's Game 7. The Pens, who came away with three power-play goals in the previous game, rarely got a good look at Anderson with the best early chance coming shorthanded from Viktor Stalberg.

The Penguins had another golden chance to win it in regulation, but Malkin was unable to bury a sitter in front of the net. The puck appeared to sneak under the crossbar, but it actually floated atop the net, fooling some of the fans inside the building. Awful towels were thrown onto the ice. It was Kunitz's first goal in his past 22 playoff games.

That's where Kunitz became the unlikely hero.

Kunitz, relegated to the fourth line since returning from injury in the second round, picked up his first postseason goal in a calendar year when he completed a two-on-one with Conor Sheary - a healthy scratch in Games 5 and 6 - by slipping the puck by Anderson 9:55 into the second period. Crosby, predictably, had the game-winning assist.

"It's like a quarterback in football and a pitcher in baseball, and we have it", Boucher said. "We had a ton of chances".

Game 1 is Monday night in Pittsburgh.

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