They had a goal waved off.
"I think I had that appreciation coming in, but I think just going through it and understanding how tough it is to win, you need some bounces, you need some luck along the way", Crosby said.
Scotty Bowman won back-to-back Stanley Cups a few times in an illustrious career behind the bench, but the 83-year-old wonders now how feasible it is in today's National Hockey League.
Pittsburgh was outshot 26-12-it had no shots in the second period and for most of the third-but goaltender Matt Murray stopped 23 of the Predators' attempts. Pittsburgh didn't manage a shot on net in the second period, the first time it's happened in a playoff game in franchise history - and the first such period by any team in a Final game since the National Hockey League began tracking shots on goal in 1958.
And then with 3:17 left Jake Guentzel skated into the Nashville zone and roofed a wrist shot to break the drought.
"I mean, we certainly aren't calling ourselves that", said Predators forward Colton Sissons, "but we've been looking at ourselves with a bit of that underdog mindset, that attitude that we're proving everybody wrong...we just fully believe in ourselves, whatever anybody on the outside of our room wants to call us". Pittsburgh has a way of intruding upon their defensive opposition and, with their ability to have goals come from nearly any player, have found a way to get to the net, but Rinne will be an entirely new battle. They have experience and swagger and tradition and all the intangibles that teams salivate for. Sullivan isn't anxious, saying Pittsburgh has the ability to "take what the game presents". Game 2 will be on Wednesday (May 31), still in the same area before heading to Bridgestone Arena in Nashville, Tennessee for Game 3 and 4 in June.
"Power plays and when you're short-handed, they make all the difference", defenseman Ryan Ellis said.
The Penguins, still without a shot since the first period, went on the power play later in the third, after a delay of game call on P.K. Subban for putting the puck over the glass. "Just being honest, I thought we did a lot of things well".
Players to watch in this matchup include Nashville left wing Filip Forsberg, who leads the Predators in points (15) and goals (8) in these playoffs. Sheary struck 1:05 after Malkin's goal, converting a wide-open look from the side of the net.
"Our power play has won a lot of games for us throughout the course of the regular season and through the playoffs", Pittsburgh coach Mike Sullivan said. Nashville beat Chicago, the top seed in the conference, in a four-game sweep before taking down St. Louis and outlasting Anaheim.
According to oddsmakers at BetDSI, Pekka Rinne is favored to win the MVP of the Stanley Cup Final, as the Nashville goalie has +180 odds.
Roman Josi took the shot, and Sissons converted a double-deflection as the puck first hit off Brian Dumoulin.
Guentzel, a rookie, scored five goals in the Penguins' first-round victory over Columbus and nine goals in his first 10 games. The Predators then lost star center Ryan Johansen to injury after losing game four at home. Guentzel's shot changed everything. "Sometimes you go through that stretch and you've got to stay positive", he said.