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Bobby Ryan lifts Senators past Penguins in OT in Game 1

17 May 2017
Bobby Ryan lifts Senators past Penguins in OT in Game 1

Ottawa Senators' Bobby Ryan, center, celebrates with teammates Marc Methot (3), Derick Brassard (19), Mark Stone (61) and Jean-Gabriel Pageau (44) after scoring the game-winning goal against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the overtime period of Game 1 of the Eastern Conference final in the NHL Stanley Cup playoffs, Saturday, May 13, 2017, in Pittsburgh. After finishing both the New York Rangers and Boston Bruins in six games, the Senators stole a road victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins last night to take a 1-0 series lead.

The Senators moved their record to 6-1 in overtime in these playoffs and have taken a 1-0 series lead over the Penguins by shutting down the like of Sidney Crosby and Phil Kessel completely.

"To start the game, it didn't feel like the conference finals, to be honest", Ducks forward Andrew Cogliano said Saturday after a short practice at the Ducks' training rink. I think he's got great puck skills.

The Penguins' lone breakthrough came with 5:35 remaining in the third period, when Chris Kunitz found Evgeni Malkin by the net for a game-tying goal.

The Penguins defeated the Blue Jackets in five games to open the playoffs. "Mike Sullivan is a lot smarter than I am".

"We just stayed with it", Josi said. We have to give props, however, to the Senators and their defensive scheme. I think five-on-five, I think we're double the shots, or something like that. "That's probably as hard a game as we're going to get". He said his lineup would be a game-time decision.

An area of focus for the Penguins after the Game 1 loss was shot selection.

The Senators almost claimed a 2-0 lead at 12:48 of the second on a wraparound play by Alexandre Burrows.

"The referee informed the situation room that he had deemed the play dead when Pittsburgh goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury covered the puck with his glove", the league said in an explanation from the situation room.

That didn't sit well with the Senators or their faithful.

The Penguins, shorthanded after losing forward Bryan Rust and defenseman Justin Schultz to injury on big hits earlier in the game, survived a flurry of late chances from the Senators and Kessel's goal stood as the game victor. Hornqvist hit post to start the power play but from there the Senators did a good job limiting Pittsburghs chances on Anderson.

The Senators are well aware they're not supposed to be here. The breakthrough came 14:32 into the first when Penguins defenseman Brian Dumoulin left a blind drop pass behind his net that Ryan intercepted and slipped to Pageau in the right circle. The Penguins put eight shots on goal before the Senators got their first. Anderson was otherwise brilliant with 28 saves on 29 shots as the best player on the ice for extended stretches and the primary reason Pittsburgh never fully seized control despite a 29-23 shot advantage. But make no mistake it was a full team effort and that is what they need a repeat of. While the penalty kill was as effective as the trap, the margin for error isn't large enough for them to continue playing with that type of fire and giving the Pens extra power play time.

He had gotten help earlier when Ron Hainsey's shot from the point was tipped by Jake Guentzel off the crossbar. They would stand behind their net waiting for a forecheck that simply wasn't coming.

Well, guess what? Guy Boucher doesn't care if you're making fun of him on Twitter; he also doesn't care if you're less-than-thrilled watching the Senators when they're, erm, a little "passive".

Game 1 went with the under as Ottawa was able to dictate the pace. Boucher's shown his mastery of adapting to opponents' strengths, and I think this is what contained Pittsburgh's offence.

Ottawa head coach Guy Boucher told the press yesterday that Viktor Stalberg, who was absent from Game 1 and is now listed as day-to-day would skate on his own and could be available for game 2.