PITTSBURGH -- Sidney Crosby won the battle of the captains in the Stanley Cup Final, helping the Pittsburgh Penguins win Game 1 against Joe Pavelski and the San Jose Sharks.
Crosby had an assist and was arguably the most dominant player on the ice in a 3-2 win at Consol Energy Center on Monday. Pavelski was held off the score sheet for the first time since May 9, a span of eight games.
"Felt good," Crosby said. "It's such a fast game, you're trying to create. You're trying to keep up with the pace and making sure that as a line we're trying to set the pace. We're trying to play a fast game too. We generated some chances."
Crosby's assist came on Conor Sheary's goal that put the Penguins up 2-0 at 13:48 of the first period. The center made it happen with his speed down the left side, with his ability to slam on the brakes, turn and keep possession, and then with his ability to find Sheary with a no-look, tape-to-tape, backhand slap pass through the middle of the ice.
Sheary had time to settle the puck on his forehand and pick the far side corner from the right circle to beat Sharks goalie Martin Jones.
Video: SJS@PIT, Gm1: Sheary doubles the lead with a wrister
"I saw him win his battle in the corner there, beat his defenseman, and I kind of just tried to find the open ice," Sheary said. "He obviously has the vision to find me. He put it right on my tape and I had a lot of time to put that in."
Pavelski, a forward who leads the Stanley Cup Playoffs with 13 goals, was held to two shots on goal and three total shot attempts. Though he can't be faulted for anything on the game-winning play, he was on the ice for center Nick Bonino's goal with 2:33 remaining in the third period.
Pavelski also committed an offensive-zone tripping penalty on Penguins defenseman Brian Dumoulin at 18:52 of the second period. The Penguins couldn't capitalize on the power play, but it might have helped give them momentum for a better third period.
"We can bring a little better game," Pavelski said.
Here is a breakdown of their stats for Game 1:
Goals: Crosby 0, Pavelski 0
Assists: Crosby 1, Pavelski 0
Points: Crosby 1, Pavelski 0
Shifts: Crosby 25, Pavelski 26
Ice time: Crosby 20:40, Pavelski 19:17
Key intangible stat: Crosby was credited for four shots on goal. Pavelski was credited for four hits.
Series stat line (goals-assists-points): Crosby 0-1-1, Pavelski 0-0-0