Pens Force a Game 7 Showdown
Several Pittsburgh Penguins players guaranteed a win Tuesday night in their Game 6 at Tampa Bay. There was little reason to doubt them, considering that home ice has meant little during this Eastern Conference championship series. The Penguins predictions were realized as they dominated the first two periods and took a 5-2 win. Now the teams head to Pittsburgh with a trip to the Stanley Cup finals on the line.
The Series So Far
Tampa Bay led the series 3-2 coming in, after stealing a win in Pittsburgh, splitting games at home, and coming from behind to take an overtime thriller in Pittsburgh on Sunday. But there was little doubt who was the better team in Tampa on Tuesday. The Penguins totally ruled the first period, got two goals in the second and held off a Tampa Bay surge in the third.
The Penguins got the lead late in the first period on a five-on-three penalty when Phil Kessel had a Evegni Malkin shot skirt off his leg pad and in. Then with 12 minutes left in the second period, Kris Letang struck on a counter attack, and later, Sidney Crosby got a steal and breakaway and beat Andrei Vasilevskiy to make it 3-0. The Lightning made it interesting when Brian Boyle struck twice to close the gap. But Bryan Rust scored, and the Pens closed it out with an open-netter.
Crosby: "You just have an appreciation for how hard it is to get to this point. We just want to make the most of this opportunity."— Pittsburgh Penguins (@penguins) May 25, 2016
From Here ...
This series has been a puzzle. The Pens have proven the better team all along, but the Lightning have continually fought back. You have to think Pittsburgh will be good in Game 7 at home, but it's not enough of a lock to take the Pens at higher than -120. And if the Lightning go up at +140 or better, that would be a price to consider. I picked the Lightning to win the East some time ago, so I'm sticking with them at that +140 here. Also, consider the over at a decent price. These teams have both scored late to make the 5 a good number at anything better than -140. But even if you don't wager, this will be a Game 7 to watch.
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