Alex Ovechkin, Capitals come up short in Game 7 once again

Meanwhile, the Penguins will take goals where they can get them, as they look to advance to another conference finals, and hope to repeat as Stanley Cup champions. Trotz assured him it was just a matter of the team as a whole doing something right.

The Pittsburgh Penguins will be moving on to the team's second straight conference final after defeating the Eastern Conference's top-seeded Washington Capitals in Game 7 Wednesday night in Washington.

The proof is hanging in the closet in Bruce Peters' home in Waldorf, Maryland, about 30 miles away from where the Presidents' Trophy winners will face the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 7 on Wednesday night with a spot in the Eastern Conference finals at stake. After losing twice to Pittsburgh on the way to Penguins Cups - after all of Crosby's concussions, and all of Ovie's playoff losses - this was the time. Anaheim hadn't won a Game 7 since 2006, when they were still the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim.

The Senators were 2-1-0 in their season series with the Penguins this year. Pittsburgh never pulled Marc-Andre Fleury, but he stopped just 21 shots. The Capitals haven't made to the conference finals since the 1997-98.

"If it's your first one or your second one you're still so anxious about losing that game", said Alzner, who has been here for all of it.

Alex Ovechkin is one of the greatest players of all time and he has the individual accolades to prove it.

There was some optimism this year might have been different, but that notion was laid to rest about four minutes into the third period when Patric Hornqvist caught Braden Holtby off guard on a turnover and gave the Pens a two-goal lead that might as well have been 20-0.

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This was the Fleury who backstopped the Penguins to the Cup in 2009 and was nearly unbeatable early in the second-round series, and his return was all they needed to eliminate the Presidents' Trophy winners in a meeting of the NHL's top two teams. This time it was a 2-0 shutout on the road.

Rust, who had a hat trick in an 8-5 win over the Senators in December, scored his sixth goal of the playoffs to break a scoreless game at 8:49 of the second period.

Sidney Crosby has been winning a majority of his face-offs as well this series.

And with about a minute left in that period, there was Backstrom with a 1-on-1 opportunity, but this shot plunked harmlessly against the net's side.

Holtby and Fleury went save for save, with the Penguins goaltender getting the shaft of his stick on a shot by Ovechkin in the second period. "We're going to have to live with that and take full responsibility for that". But his best save of the period was off Alex Ovechin, who one-timed a shot from the slot and started to raise his arms to signal goal before he realized Fleury had deflected it into the crowd-protecting mesh.

Washington Capitals left wing Alex Ovechkin (8), from Russian Federation, is taken to the ice by Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Brian Dumoulin (8) during the second period of Game 7 in an NHL hockey Stanley Cup Eastern Conference semifinal. Hornqvists fourth of the post-season was a ideal backhand that went through the legs of Capitals defenceman Nate Schmidt and off the bar past Holtbys catching mitt. The home team clearly received a boost. Crosby appeared to be dazed and got up slowly, but he wasn't pulled from the game.

Ritchie, the 21-year-old power forward in his first playoff campaign, fired a lovely wrist shot past Talbot on a pass from Corey Perry 3:21 into the third period. If they can get more shots on goal, maybe they would have a chance to actually get some points on the board.

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