Predators goalie Rinne struggling as Pens take 2-0 lead

  • Predators goalie Rinne struggling as Pens take 2-0 lead

Predators goalie Rinne struggling as Pens take 2-0 lead

He trails only Dino Ciccarelli for the most goals by a rookie in single postseason. "I don't know if you remember but the worst goaltender at the World Cup for Team Finland was Pekka Rinne".

Game 3 is Saturday in Nashville.

Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne (35) looks back to find a shot by Pittsburgh Penguins' Jake Guentzel in the goal during the third period of Game 2 of the NHL hockey Stanley Cup Final, Wednesday, May 31, 2017, in Pittsburgh.

Jake Guentzel led the rally with the second of his two goals, Evgeni Malkin and Scott Wilson also finding the back of the net. The Penguins beat Rinne four times on just 11 shots in Game 1 and scored three goals on 25 shots Wednesday for a 2-0 series lead.

Laviolette gave no hint about whether Rinne will start Game 3, saying only that he will not talk about lineup changes.

Until the three-goal eruption, the Penguins were struggling some on offense - outshot 32-19 at that point - though not as much as in Game 1 when they overcame a 37-minute shot drought.

"It's insane", Guentzel said of his two big games this series after an eight-game goal drought. He also scored the game-winner with 3:17 left to win game one. Yet Murray, who, once healthy, quickly wrested back the starting gig in the playoffs from Marc-Andre Fleury, plays with the aplomb of a seasoned veteran.

As a result, a Predators team that once again played well enough to win is once again shaking its heads after going down 2-0 in the best-of-seven series that is slipping from its grasp.

60 minutes are in the books, but they weren't the most traditional start to the Stanley Cup Finals. Murray is the first goalie age 24 or younger to be the starter in two Cup Finals since Hall of Famer Patrick Roy for the Canadiens in 1986 and 1989. Guentzel's go-ahead goal 10 seconds into the third period slammed the door shut on Game 2. That's remarkable for someone who's not a superstar but is a fierce forechecker and solid two-way player, at home on the left side of No.1 center Sidney Crosby or grinding on the fourth line.

That's not bad for a guy who is still considered a rookie because he didn't play the prerequisite number of games last season to qualify as a year in the league.

PITTSBURGH (AP) - The Pittsburgh Penguins kept Pekka Rinne plenty busy this time.

Nashville will get the next two games at home, but Game 3 is a must-win for the Predators or they'll fall down a three-game hole to the defending Stanley Cup champions.

"The best part is I used their towel and their shirt to put the raw catfish in, right before I threw it on the ice", he said. While Guentzel is deserving of praise, the tandem of Marc-Andre Fleury and Matt Murray have gotten the Penguins to where they are.

Of Nashville's five losses this postseason, two have been in Game 2.

His tally on Wednesday capped a wild three-goal burst in the opening four minutes of the third period that blew open what had been a tight game. "And right away the focus shifts. We need to be better in front of him". They went 9 minutes and 50 seconds without a shot, reminiscent of the second period of Game 1when they had no shots at all. Penguins coach Mike Sullivan has deliberately cut Guentzel's ice time, citing fatigue factors.

Rinne fell to 0-5-0 in five career starts in Pittsburgh and he has never beaten the Penguins anywhere as a starter. We killed them, but it just drains the bench, it takes the flow out of the bench.

Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin long ago set the standard for homegrown talent in the Steel City, but a fresh-faced rookie is now the talk of the town.