Looking to extend their 1-0 lead, the Pittsburgh Penguins take on the Ottawa Senators Friday night at CONSOL Energy Center in the Game Two of their second round playoff matchup.
Pittsburgh won the series opener 4-1, behind its continued power play efficiency and excellence from Pascal Dupuis. The Penguins converted four of their power plays into goals by Paul Martin and Chris Kunitz.
Dupuis scored his team-high sixth goal of the postseason in Game One, and Evgeni Malkin extended his point streak to seven games with a goal and assist. Malkin now has 13 points this postseason, with 10 assists.
Goalkeeper Tomas Vokoun also turned away 35 Senator shots.
The Penguins are now first in power play efficiency this postseason at 36 percent, and nine goals. Somehow superstar Sidney Crosby hasn't benefited much. The center has scored once in the last five games, but has still found a way to be effective with six assists in that same span.
Ottawa is wading in unfamiliar waters, considering they had the NHL’s best penalty kill line during the regular season.
There could have been a bit of rust after a five-day layover from their 4-1 series win over Montreal in the first round. The Senators only goal in Game One came from Colin Greening in the first period for a 1-1 tie, but Pittsburgh took over from their with three unanswered scores.
While their overall attack was ranked 27th during the regular season, Ottawa did not look like the club that totaled 24 goals in five games against the Canadiens. Points and goal leader Kyle Turris was largely neutralized in Game One, but the team could rally around veteran Daniel Alfredsson. The 40-year-old leads the team with six points in the playoffs.
Defense could again be a problem for the Senators Friday with Eric Gryba a game-time decision due to an upper body injury, though he was originally listed as out Thursday.
The puck drops at 7:30 p.m. ET on the NBC Sports Network, and viewers can also watch a free live stream online with NBC Sports Live Extra.
Betting Odds: Pittsburgh is 1.5 goal favorite.
Predicted Score: Ottawa 2-1