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Game Preview: Pens-Caps (Game 5)

by Sam Kasan @PensInsideScoop / Pittsburgh Penguins

The Pens face the Capitals in Washington for an elimination contest. 

MATCH: Penguins vs. Capitals

SERIES: Second Round, 3-1 PIT

TIME: 7:15 p.m. EST

PLACE: Verizon Center

TV: NBC

RADIO: 105.9 FM, the X

WHAT TO WATCH FOR:

The Pens have pushed the Capitals to the brink of elimination and look to advance to the Eastern Conference Final for a second straight season with a victory in Game 5 … Pittsburgh won Game 4, 3-2, despite losing forwards Sidney Crosby and Conor Sheary. Both Crosby and Sheary practiced on Friday and are listed as day-to-day by the team. They're game-time decisions to play … Justin Schultz has goals in back-to-back games, including the game-winner in Game 4. He has 4 points in the last 2 contests … Rookie Jake Guentzel scored his NHL-leading 8th goal of the playoffs in Game 4 … Center Evgeni Malkin leads the NHL in playoff scoring with 16 points. He has 5 points (2G-3A) in the last 3 games … Goalie Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 36 of 38 shots in Game 4. His current .935 save percentage is a career high … Pittsburgh injuries: Crosby (concussion), Kris Letang (herniated disc), Matt Murray (lower-body), Sheary (concussion), Chad Ruhwedel (upper-body) … The Caps are expecting more from their star players in Game 5 as they stare down elimination. Following the Game 4 loss Alex Ovechkin said, "I need to be better." Head coach Barry Trotz said, "Our top players didn't play as well as they need to. They need to be top players and step up right now." ... Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and Evgeny Kuznetsov all have 4 points each in the series against Pittsburgh … Reigning Vezina-winning goalie Braden Holtby has a .867 save percentage and 3.00 GAA in the series … Washington injuries: None.

MORNING SKATE REPORT:

*It was a very optional morning skate for the Pens. Those who did not skate were Crosby, Kessel, Malkin, Hainsey, Hagelin, Cole, Kunitz, Bonino and Dumoulin.  

*Both Crosby and Sheary passed their baseline tests and will be game-time decision for tonight. 

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