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Bonino's OT goal sends Penguins to conference final

NHL news and notes

by @NHL /


Washington scored three straight goals to force overtime, but Nick Bonino scored at 6:32 of the extra frame to help the Pittsburgh Penguins eliminate the Presidents' Trophy-winning Washington Capitals and advance to the Eastern Conference Final. It's the Penguins' fourth appearance since 2008.

* Bonino, who was acquired from the Vancouver Canucks last July, scored his third career playoff overtime goal (10 OT GP) and second in a series-clinching victory (also Game 6 of 2014 Western First Round at the Dallas Stars with the Anaheim Ducks). He has one overtime goal in 327 career regular-season games.

* All three Penguins goal scorers - Bonino, Phil Kessel (2-1-3) and Carl Hagelin (1-2-3) - were acquired via trade by general manager Jim Rutherford over the past 10 months.

* ICYMI: Bonino's winner came moments after the crossbar camera captured a spectacular goal-line stop by Capitals forward Jay Beagle.

* The Penguins will play the Tampa Bay Lightning in the Eastern Conference Final in their second all-time playoff meeting. Sean Bergenheim scored the lone goal and Dwayne Roloson made 36 saves to help Tampa Bay eliminate Pittsburgh in Game 7 of the 2011 Conference Quarterfinals after trailing 3-1 in the series.

Video: WSH@PIT, Gm6: Bonino buries rebound to clinch series

Home Team in Caps

PITTSBURGH 4, Washington 3 (OT) - PIT wins 4-2


* Pittsburgh improved to 8-1 in nine all-time playoff series against Washington, including six straight wins.

* Via Elias, the Penguins became the second team in the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs to win a series-clinching game despite surrendering a three-goal lead (San Jose Sharks at Los Angeles Kings in first round). It happened only twice in the previous 25 playoff years.

* Bonino is the eighth player in Penguins history to score a series-winning goal in overtime, joining Brooks Orpik (2013 CQF at NYI), Pascal Dupuis (2010 CQF at OTT), Marian Hossa (2008 CSF vs. NYR), Darius Kasparaitis (2001 CSF at BUF), Martin Straka (2001 CQF vs. WSH), George Ferguson (1979 PR at BUF) and Michel Briere (1970 QF at OAK).

* The Penguins have won 21 of their past 26 games at CONSOL Energy Center since Jan. 17 against the Carolina Hurricanes, including a 5-1 mark in the postseason.

* The Penguins have won all 45 games this season when leading after two periods (6-0 in playoffs).


Capitals forward Justin Williams had a goal and an assist to bring his totals to 14-12-26 in 19 career playoff games when his team faced elimination. Via Elias, Williams' average of 0.74 goals per game in contests when facing elimination ranks third in NHL history (minimum: 10 such GP) behind Maurice Richard (0.88; 15 goals in 17 GP) and Pavel Bure (0.80; 12 goals in 15 GP).

Video: WSH@PIT, Gm6: Williams roofs one over Murray

* Elias also notes that four players in NHL history have scored more goals when facing elimination: Mark Messier leads with 16, ahead of Jaromir Jagr, Gilbert Perreault and Richard, who each have 15.


Home teams are 8-8 in 16 total overtime games during the 2016 playoffs (70 GP), with nine of those extra-session games falling in the second round (23 GP).

* The nine overtime games are the most in the second round since the 16-team postseason format was introduced in 1980.

* The second round has seen 39 percent of games extend past regulation (9 of 23), compared to 15 percent of games in the first round (7 of 47).


The start time for Game 7 between the San Jose Sharks and Nashville Predators has been set for 9 p.m. ET / 8 p.m. CT / 6 p.m. PT in San Jose on Thursday (NBCSN, SN, TVA Sports) . . . Via Elias, Pittsburgh's Matt Murray (36 SV) improved to 7-2 in his postseason career and became the first rookie goaltender to win multiple series-clinching games in the Stanley Cup Playoffs since 2006, when Cam Ward (CAR; 4), Ilya Bryzgalov (ANA; 2) and Ryan Miller (BUF; 2) each achieved the feat . . . Capitals defenseman John Carlson scored to match the team record for points in a playoff year by a defenseman (5-7-12), equaling the mark established by Kevin Hatcher (5-7-12) and Scott Stevens (1-11-12) in 1988 . . . NHL LiveWire: Members of the Predators were mic'd up when Nashville staved off elimination with an overtime victory in Game 6 against San Jose . . . The final for the EA SPORTS NHL 17 Cover Vote pits San Jose's Joe Pavelski against the St. Louis Blues' Vladimir Tarasenko. Voting for this round is open until 3 p.m. ET on May 16, with the winner to be revealed at the 2016 NHL Awards in Las Vegas on June 22 . . . MUST SEE: Hockey fan Gerry Nelson and his son Wyatt shared a touching and emotional moment with the Stanley Cup . . . NBC's Mike "Doc" Emrick won the Sports Emmy for Outstanding Sports Personality-Play by Play, his third consecutive win and fourth in six years.


All Times Eastern
St. Louis @ Dallas, 8:00 p.m., series tied 3-3, NBCSN, SN, TVA Sports


Each of the last two days of the second round will feature a Game 7 with a spot in the Western Conference Final at stake. The Dallas Stars and Blues play tonight in the fourth Game 7 in 13 all-time playoff series between the teams. The others, which all required overtime, came when the Stars were based in Minnesota: the Blues won in the 1968 Semifinals and 1972 Quarterfinals, while the North Stars were victorious in the 1984 Norris Division Final. While the Stars will be playing their first Game 7 since 2007, the Blues will play their second such game this postseason, having eliminated the defending Stanley Cup champion Chicago Blackhawks in the first round. Blues forward Troy Brouwer, who scored the game-winning goal in Game 7 of the first round, is set to play in a Game 7 for an eighth consecutive playoff series since the 2011 Conference Quarterfinals, the longest such streak in League history.

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