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Penguins Take 2-0 Lead in Stanley Cup Final With OT Win

Image Source: @TSN_Sports on Twitter

The Pittsburgh Penguins dominated the majority of regulation, then withstood a late San Jose Sharks push and won Game 2 of the Stanley Cup Final in overtime. The win gives Pittsburgh a 2-0 series lead after their consecutive home ice victories. Conor Sheary was the hero this time, netting the overtime winner. The loss also means that San Jose is still searching for their first Stanley Cup Final win in franchise history.

The Penguins controlled the game’s first two periods, allowing the Sharks a measly nine shots in the first half of the game. It was reflected in shot attempts through two periods, as San Jose really never came close in that category in the first two periods. 

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Midway through the second, Pittsburgh’s pressure resulted in a goal from the red-hot HBK line. Carl Hagelin pulled the puck off of Roman Polak‘s stick as he attempted to exit the zone and passed it to Nick Bonino. Bonino snapped a shot that trickled by Martin Jones, and Phil Kessel sped to the net to get his stick on the puck before it crossed the line. The goal was Kessel’s tenth of the playoffs. 

Kessel goal

— Stephanie (@myregularface) June 2, 2016

Evgeni Malkin came close a few minutes later with a beautiful spin move that Jones saved in the middle of an eight-minute stretch without a shot on goal by San Jose. In the end, Pittsburgh ended up outshooting the Sharks—the 11th straight game they’ve outshot their playoff opponent.

The Penguins’ dominance carried over into the third period, although it was interspersed with some shifts of pressure for the Sharks. Midway through the period the Penguins had a golden chance when Kessel hit the post—one of many hit by both teams throughout the contest. Two minutes later Sidney Crosby was denied at point-blank range after receiving a nifty pass from Conor Sheary.

Despite all their pressure, Pittsburgh could not get a second goal. That became critical with four minutes left when Justin Braun rang a shot off the post and into the net. Despite a large disparity in shot attempts, it was 1-1 and the game needed overtime.

Braun goal

— Stephanie (@myregularface) June 2, 2016
The Sharks made a furious push in the final minute of regulation, but Matt Murray was equal to every shot. Overtime was a quick affair. After an offensive zone draw, Kris Letang passed the puck to Sheary in the high slot. Sheary corralled the puck and fired it past Jones with a wrist shot through traffic. The goal ended overtime after less than three minutes.

Sheary OT winner

— Stephanie (@myregularface) June 2, 2016
Game 3 will be played on Saturday night in San Jose.

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