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Special teams difference for Penguins in 4-2 win over Senators

The Canadian Press
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The Hockey News
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Special teams difference for Penguins in 4-2 win over Senators

The Canadian Press
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The win allowed the Penguins to tie the Eastern Conference semifinal series 1-1 with Game 3 Sunday in Pittsburgh.

While there will be little time to analyze the game, the Senators may want to pay special attention to its powerplay that finished a dismal 1-for-9. In contrast the Penguins were 2-for-3 with the man advantage.

Senators coach Bryan Murray was brutally honest when he said "our powerplay wasn't very good - understatement."

Like his players Murray felt Ottawa created chances, but Pittsburgh was able to hold them back.

"We created a lot of chances in the game and we know special teams are big in the playoffs," said Senators centre Jason Spezza, who had a goal and an assist. "That was the difference in the game. We had a lot of chances; we just couldn't bury the puck."

Ottawa is now 3-for-15 through two games and while many don't see a need to panic it's evident the power play needs to be more efficient.

"It's a big part, but I don't think it's the difference," said Ottawa captain Daniel Alfredsson. "You always want to score on the powerplay, but at least we had our chances."

The Penguins were taking great pride in their ability to shut down the Senators and will likely use it as a source of confidence heading into Sunday's game.

"It just seems like everyone knows their role," said Pittsburgh's Jordan Staal, who scored his second goal of the playoffs. "Everyone seems to be playing well and there's no doubt our best penalty killer was Fleury. He did a great job."

Fleury faced 37 shots, but was at his best in the second period when the Senators outshot the Penguins 19-5.

Heading to Pittsburgh with the series tied was hardly what the Senators had hoped for, but at the same time realize there's still lots of hockey to be played.

"We've bounced back in other series being tied 1-1," said Ottawa's Mike Fisher. "We had our chances and just came up a bit short. We know we can be better."

The Penguins now have the luxury of going home with a lot more confidence than when they arrived in Ottawa last week.

"We wanted to steal one game," said Staal. "This is really good. It's going to help our confidence."

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Special teams difference for Penguins in 4-2 win over Senators