Predators goalie Rinne struggling as Pens take 2-0 lead

That would put them one ahead of the New York Rangers, despite the fact that the Rangers had a 41-year head start on them.

"For me, this is a once in a lifetime opportunity", Rinne said "I've played a long time and this is my first time having a chance to play for the Cup". Well, if I were the one choosing (and I'm not), history would be made.

Nashville's Matt Irwin drilled Pittsburgh's Matt Cullen from behind into the boards in the first period, a hit that left the 40-year-old Cullen headed down the runway for a quick check but didn't result in a penalty.

You could argue that without Guentzel's scoring, both in terms of quantity and quality, the Penguins are not where the are today. Nashville Predators' Pontus Aberg (46) celebrates his goal against the Pittsburgh Penguins with P.K. Subban (76) during the first period in Game 2 of the NHL hockey Stanley Cup Final, Wednesday, May 31, 2017, in Pittsburgh.

Police say 36-year-old Jacob Waddell threw the dead fish over the glass surrounding the rink on Monday night during the Nashville Predators-Pittsburgh Penguins game. And Murray has been a major difference maker so far in the final. With the feeling-out process of the series opener out of the way, the rest of it should have a more steady flow. To be blunt, Murray has been as brilliant as Rinne has been bad.

Guentzel, who snapped an eight-game goalless drought when he pumped the victor by Rinne with 3:17 left in the series opener, tied it later in the period. His 19 points is good for fourth-best ever, two points behind Ciccarelli in 1981 and Ville Leino of the Philadelphia Flyers in 2010. Rinne comes into Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final with a 1.83 goals-against average and a.934 save percentage. The Preds outshot the Pens again, there was questionable officiating and another own goal by a Nashville defender. The Cup final will end in a hurry if Rinne doesn't rediscover his game. The rookie from Omaha, Nebraska, leads the playoffs with 12 goals and has scored the past three goals for Pittsburgh. Zach Smith, of Crafton, Pa., covers his Stanley Cup replica as he waits in the rain outside PPG Paints Arena before Game 2 of the NHL hockey Stanley Cup Final between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Nashville Predators, Wedne.

Instead, coach Mike Sullivan opted to stick with him while also praising his overall play even without the goals.

"This is his first year pro, coming out of college, where he's not used to playing the National Hockey League schedule, and the demands of that physically, not to mention a long playoff run", Sullivan said of Guentzel. "I think we were just glad to get the win at the end of the night". It would be hard to believe that tandem will be split up again in these playoffs.

"This is really cool for our franchise to be front and centre", Walker said. And he knows when to kind of get out of there and find a soft area and open up for a pass.

"I understand the severity of what I did and I take full responsibility for my actions", Woods said in a statement Monday evening.

As for Murray, his 37-save victory was the 20 playoff win of his career.

A disallowed PK Subban goal for Filip Forsberg being offside by a fraction of an inch is one thing. If he continues to play at this level they have no chance. And give Sullivan credit here.

Eventually, he failed a sobriety test so badly that at one point officers moved toward him to ensure he didn't fall over.

Murray acknowledged he does get a case of the nerves before he plays, but it certainly doesn't show.

"I thought our guys played a great game", Nashville coach Peter Laviolette said. For one, they actually put pucks on the net.

"When you lose a couple games and get pulled, you're not happy about how things went", Rinne said.

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