Kukla's Korner Hockey
Final score 3-2.
The Penguins took a 2-0 goal lead, the San Jose Sharks score two unanswered goals to tie the then Nick Bonino scored late in the 3rd to give the Pens the lead and the game.
Highlights below, in different media formats.
NBC Network coverage begins at 8:00pm ET and the game is also on CBC and TVAS.
The experts from NHL.com and NHL Network have made their Stanley Cup Final picks, and the San Jose Sharks are an overwhelming favorite to win it all.
Of the 21 analysts, 17 picked the Sharks to defeat the Pittsburgh Penguins in the Final... NHL Network analyst Mike Rupp and NHL.com writers Dan Rosen, Matt Cubeta and Robert Laflamme have the Penguins winning the series.
Sharks captain Joe Pavelski is the favorite to win the Conn Smythe Trophy, awarded to the most valuable player of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Thirteen of the 21 experts selected the San Jose captain.
If you so wish, discuss the game as it plays-out tonight.
from Chris Johnston of Sportsnet,
Who is going to win? How many games?
Fortunately, Swedish journalist Per Bjurman of Aftonbladet has done the work for us heading into the Stanley Cup Final. He polled a massive swath of people from across the hockey world – including players, former players, agents and journalists – and received 147 responses.
The consensus choice from that group for this year’s Stanley Cup champion is San Jose by a margin of 90-57, or 61.2 per cent.
The list of current NHLers that picked the Sharks includes Nicklas Backstrom, Henrik and Daniel Sedin, Jacob De La Rose, Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Niklas Hjalmarsson, Hampus Lindholm and William Karlsson.
Henrik Lundqvist, whose New York Rangers were ousted by Pittsburgh in a five-game first-round series, touted the Penguins.
Henrik Zetterberg, Erik Karlsson, Loui Eriksson, Eddie Lack and Filip Forsberg are among those who agreed with him.
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
Here are five storylines that will determine in large part whether the Sharks or Pittsburgh Penguins hold that trophy high in the coming days. Game 1 will be at 8 p.m. ET Monday.
Sharks seeking redemption
The seven-year lapse between Stanley Cup finals for the Penguins' core of stars is well-documented. But in some ways that pales in comparison with to the road to redemption for a Sharks team that has never been to the finals and that two years ago epically blew a 3-0 series lead in the first round against the eventual Cup-champion Los Angeles Kings.
No two players have worn the heavy cloak of criticism over the years more often than Joe Thornton and Patrick Marleau. The two former captains have played a combined 3,093 regular-season and postseason games and never once stood on this stage. When Marleau noticed the Cup sitting a few feet away on Sunday, he laughed. Yes. Close, but far.
"Four wins away and there's a lot of heavy lifting, a lot of hard work that's going to have to go in, in order to raise that Cup," he said. "Ever since you're a kid, when you know what it's all about, you want to win it right then when you're 8, 9 years old. So, it's a long time coming and [we're] just kind of trying to relish it and stay in the moment and just to have fun with it."
Which captain will prevail?
Sidney Crosby is the best hockey player on the planet. It's a refrain heard so often, it seems like an undeniable truth. For much of his career, it has been a statement easy to defend.
And this spring Crosby might be playing the best all-around hockey of his career. He scored three game winners in the Eastern Conference finals. He has 15 points in 18 games and has been dynamic at both ends of the ice, playing often against opposing team's top players....
San Jose Sharks (Series Price)
Pittsburgh Penguins (Series Prices) 4/5 (-125)
Odds to win 2016 Conn Smythe Trophy as NHL Playoff MVP
from Pascal Dupuis at the Players' Tribune,
One leg was twice the size of the other. It was a few hours before the game. We were in Edmonton last November. I was warming up in the hallway, doing some band work, some quick-feet stuff. At some point I looked down and saw that my right leg was really swollen.
When you are dealing with blood clots, this is the moment you always fear. Your body is betraying you. You can’t deny it. You can’t fight through it.
I took my equipment off and put on a tracksuit to go to the hospital to get checked out. As I was walking out of the locker room with the doctor, one of my teammates gave me a hug and just broke down in tears.
“Not again, Duper. Are you kidding me? Again?”
That’s the moment I realized that I needed to draw the line. People weren’t just worried about me playing hockey. They were worried about me playing with my life.
from Jonathan Bombulie of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review,
As the champagne sprayed and the Stanley Cup was passed around on that legendary June night at Joe Louis Arena in 2009, the Penguins knew they had just completed a spectacularly difficult task.
They survived an epic seven-game battle of superstars with the Washington Capitals. They dethroned a respected Detroit Red Wings team in seven more games in the final. They played through the potentially debilitating injuries and draining fatigue that all teams must overcome to win 16 games in a single postseason.
It was hard, they learned painfully that spring, to get to the top.
It was even harder, they learned even more painfully over the next six springs, to stay there.
Now, as Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Chris Kunitz, Kris Letang and Marc-Andre Fleury — the five players from the 2009 title team that remain on the roster — prepare to lead the Penguins into the Stanley Cup Final again seven years later, they have a chance to show the hockey world exactly what they've learned.
“We did a great job of becoming a certain style of team,” Kunitz said. “We grew as a group. We had our struggles. When you go through struggles and can come out better on the back end, we've been playing some of our best hockey because of what we went through.”
from Brett Cyrgalis of the New York Post,
There is a palpable letdown around here when the New York-area hockey teams are done for the summer. With no dog in the fight, it’s hard to garner interest in the national stage as the warmth of summer approaches.
But after all the Memorial Day barbecues and fireworks are done, Monday night brings with it Game 1 of what is an intriguing Stanley Cup final between the Penguins and the Sharks. There are stars and storylines that reach into the fandom of the Rangers, Islanders and Devils, and ones that should grab any sports fans attention.
Here are The Post’s top five reasons to watch:
1) Sidney Crosby
The Penguins captain has reasserted himself as the best player in the world — just in case he ever lost that title. In Game 6 of the East finals against the Lightning, facing elimination, Crosby scored arguably the best goal of the playoffs, just the kind of play that makes you love hockey. Weaving through traffic and finishing a swift snap shot, Crosby gave his team a 3-0 lead in a game they would win, 3-2, to force Game 7.
from Chris Johnston of Sportsnet,
You battle through a 13-year pro career and all of the highs and lows that come with it and finally reach the Stanley Cup final. You get handed all of the nice new swag dispersed among the Pittsburgh Penguins and San Jose Sharks, and are tossed into the middle of the media day frenzy on the Consol Energy Center concourse.
And when your big moment arrives, as Trevor Daley’s did Sunday afternoon, you show up using crutches and wearing a walking boot.
“You know what, obviously I do – I do feel sorry for myself,” said Daley. “I try to control what I can control. I can’t control this situation so I’m going to have to make the best out of it.”
The Penguins have already announced that he’s done for the playoffs with a broken left ankle. Daley got his skate stuck in a rut and fell awkwardly while getting hit by Ryan Callahan in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference final on May 20.
However, he’s still trying to keep the faintest light of hope alive, especially given that a Stanley Cup final that begins Monday might stretch all the way until June 15.
Joe Thornton is a guy that just likes to keep things loose and have fun. But he’s all about business when it comes to giving his team their best chance to raise hockey’s greatest prize.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
Email Paul anytime at firstname.lastname@example.org