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Stanley Cup Final

Stanley Cup Final blog: Harry Zolnierczyk

Predators forward looks back on Game 5 loss to Penguins, confident team will be ready for Game 6

by Harry Zolnierczyk / Special to

Nashville Predators left wing Harry Zolnierczyk will be keeping his own blog throughout the Stanley Cup Final against the Pittsburgh Penguins. Zolnierczyk will check in regularly with behind-the-scenes access.

Zolnierczyk, 29, is in his first season with the Predators. He split the season between Nashville and Milwaukee of the American Hockey League. In 24 regular-season NHL games, he had two goals and two assists. He has played in 11 games in the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs and has a goal and two assists. He broke into the NHL with the Philadelphia Flyers in 2011-12 and has played for the Penguins, New York Islanders and Anaheim Ducks.

In his Friday entry, Zolnierczyk discusses the Predators' 6-0 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 5 at PPG Paints Arena on Thursday that has them trailing 3-2 in the best-of-7 series and looks ahead to Game 6 in Nashville on Sunday (8 p.m. ET; NBC, CBC, SN, TVA Sports).

Obviously that was not the outcome we were looking for in Game 5. The Penguins started the game quicker and attacked quicker than we did.

We just had beaten them twice in our building, and if we didn't think they were going to give us their best, we were fooling ourselves.

Our problems tonight were mostly mental lapses and losing our coverage. We were just putting [goalie] Pekka [Rinne] in really tough spots. It doesn't matter who is in net. Juuse [Saros] came in, and he is a fantastic goalie who is going to be one of the top goalies in this League, and were just too careless in front of him as well.

Now, at the end of the day, we leave ticked off, which could be a good thing knowing that we have to win two games now. A loss is a loss. It could have been a heartbreaker in overtime or it could have been 10-0. Regardless, they won the game and are up 3-2.

We know there are things we have to clean up and we'll reset for Game 6. In the room we're confident we can win. We are this deep in the playoffs for a reason: We're resilient. Sunday will just be another game back home at Bridgestone. Our backs are against the wall, sure, but that means we'll play our best game. And I like our team's chances when we play our best game.

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