Pens Advance to 2nd Round

It proved harder that it seemed it would after an easy Game 4 gave the Penguins a 3-1 lead, but they were finally able to get past a pesky Senators squad in 6 games on Pascal Dupuis’ overtime goal.  You have to give Ottawa a lot of credit for the way they battled in this series despite being the team with a talent deficit.  They blocked a ton of shots and got great series from guys like Regin and Neal and Volchenkov.  But you also have to give the Pens credit after losing Game 5 in 3OT and being down 3-0 in Game 6 the fought it back to overtime and was able to sneak a goal in to win.

Of course, the stories the next day are focusing on how the game would’ve been different if the Ottawa goal that went in after the net was dislodged had been allowed to make it 4-1, while completely ignoring that Toronto didn’t allow the Pens to have the goal they clearly scored to tie the game at 1 in the 1st period and how that could’ve turned the game also.  Oh well.

So now the Pens sit back and wait to see who they play in the conference semifinals.  Assuming Washington does eventually get past Montreal the Pens would play the winner of the Boston/Buffalo series.  But if the Canadiens do pull the comeback upset its more complicated.  A Boston win in their series would mean the Pens play Montreal.  A Buffalo win in their series would mean the Pens play Philadelphia.  If the results work out to where the Pens are playing Montreal, Philadelphia, or Boston they would have home ice advantage.  But if its Buffalo the Sabres have home ice.  Also, if Boston and Montreal both win that would actually give the 4th seeded Pens home ice advantage through the conference finals.  Not that it really matters much in the Stanley Cup Playoffs; the 6 games in the Sens/Pens series was won by the home team exactly once.

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