Thoughts, musings and observations from the Pens' 5-2 loss against the Washington Capitals in Game 6 at PPG Paints Arena.
*The Pens picked a bad time to have their worst performance of the playoffs. Pittsburgh seemed completely out of sync for the entire game. Their passes weren't connecting. Their breakouts weren't breaking. Their decision-making wasn't sharp.
There's no need to overanalyze this. The Pens, for whatever reason, weren't able to get anything going. It was just a dud.
These things happen. Remember Washington's 6-2 blowout loss in Game 2? The Caps were able to bounce back and win Game 3. But this stings the Pens because they let Washington off the hook for the second time. And now this entire series will come down to an all-or-nothing, do-or-die Game 7 in Washington on Wednesday night.
*The Pens had two opportunities to finish off the Caps. And they've let both of them slip away. Washington is not a team that you want to give any kind of hope or life. If you give the Caps an inch they'll steal a mile.
The good news is the Pens have one more chance to finish off the Caps. The bad news is, if they don't, then the season will come to an end for Pittsburgh.
*Although it may not have changed the outcome, the Pens' 2 late goals from Jake Guentzel and Evgeni Malkin at least is a positive to take out of the game. It gives the Pens something to hang their hat on and, hopefully, some momentum to carry over into Wednesday night.
*Bad starts have plagued the Pens all postseason. And they had another sub-par performance tonight. Pittsburgh managed just 3 shots in the opening frame. But 1 was a dump/shot from 136 feet away by Brian Dumoulin and another from Matt Cullen with just 1.1 seconds remaining.
The Pens would finish the game with only 18 total shots on goal.
*The Caps vaunted power play has been held under wraps for almost the entire series. But it stepped up just when they needed it the most. Washington picked up 2 man-advantage tallies. The first from T.J. Oshie in the first period to give the Caps a 1-0 lead. The second was halfway through the third period from John Carlson to seal the game as the Caps took a 4-0 lead at that time.