Pittsburgh Penguins Repeat As Stanley Cup Champions, Sidney Crosby Playoff MVP

Even the Chicago Blackhawks, three-time winners with a core of Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane and Duncan Keith hadn't managed to win in back-to-back years.

"We know what we have to do and I think what we're going to take from this that we're going to have to be even better if we want to become champions". Some of the names and faces changed, but throughout that stretch it was a group that made up for what it lacked in raw talent with an excess of character - exactly what the current Hurricanes have been missing the past few years. And these guys did exactly what I hoped they would do: "They got us the Cup".

Not many gave Nashville a chance. The Washington Capitals should have been the first team to teach us this lesson.

Still, in spite of all of that, Nashville went on a somewhat magical run to advance to its first Stanley Cup in franchise history. "I believe we have it in abundance in our dressing room". I'm proud of the way we responded after Game 5 in the game tonight. "We lost a lot of guys to injuries".

"I don't know how many guys went up this year; I don't have the exact number".

The Predators hit two goal posts - including Colton Sissons rifling a shot from the high slot off the right post that had Murray beat with 10:37 remaining in regulation. Sissons recorded a hat trick in the clinching Game 6 of the Anaheim series.

Forwards Jake Guentzel, Carter Rowney and Josh Archibald played throughout the postseason, including the Stanley Cup Final against the Nashville Predators. He finished the regular season with 44 goals and 89 points, good for second in the National Hockey League.

Flaherty also missed the game on television because he was at sea, but said he listened to the play-by-play on the radio.

"I don't think (it means) a whole lot".

Oh, well. He'll just have to wait until the first round of next year's postseason to add that entry to his already ridiculous resume. The Penguins defeated the Predators 2-0. Crosby took the Cup from NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman before handing the trophy off to veteran defenseman Ron Hainsey who passed it to veteran forward Matt Cullen.

The kids weren't the only ones who got to celebrate with the back-to-back champs. In the Final, the city blocked off portions of Broadway, where estimated crowds of 50,000 gathered to watch the games. "The fact that (the Predators) are so good here at home, to be able to finish it off here is unbelievable". "Go Preds" was a common greeting or goodbye. No team in their league had repeated as champion in almost two decades. Fleury will nearly certainly play elsewhere next season and defenseman Justin Schultz is a restricted free agent but may have played himself into a contract too rich for the Penguins to match. That duo, along with linemate Forsberg, are all in their early 20s.

"I talked at the start of the season about keeping two goalies". Just 28, Subban is the elder statesman of that group. On the other side, Predators captain Mike Fisher will have a tough decision to make. Stars have a powerful presence, and it takes another strong personality to coach them.

(Copyright © 2015. All Rights Reserved.)
 
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