But Pittsburg made it 5-2 at 5:31.
With the Penguins under constant assault - they were outshot 16-5 in the first period and were shorthanded 29 seconds into the second period of a scoreless game - the Penguins grabbed a 1-0 lead on Matt Cullen's goal, and the doubt had to be creeping into the Capitals' minds.
Penguins netminder Marc-Andre Fleury was again spectacular and kept his team in the game, despite his defense playing sloppily in front of him, turning the puck over on a number of occasions.
"Listen, Washington's a real good hockey team. He was the one guy that was going to step up for us". "That's what we expect".
"It wasn't as we planned", Holtby said. You are getting sleepy. Because of his stellar play, the game was 0-0 after the first period. The Caps' chances of advancing, according to National Hockey League history, are 21 percent. They have never swept a four-game series.
The Flyers had just a 2.2 per cent chance of winning the lottery, yet they moved all the way up into the No. 2 selection spot when it was over. Plan A - jump ahead of 'em - is toast.More news: Le Pen speech plagiarism 'a wink to former candidate Fillon'
The more honest the Caps are with themselves about the true difficulty of title runs - how almost terrifying they can seem at times and how quickly true crises jump up in your face - the better they can cope with them. But so are the playoffs in every sport.
The Predators say forward Kevin Fiala is recovering from surgery after breaking his left leg during Wednesday's playoff game against St. Louis.
The Penguins won Game 2 6-2 to take a 2-0 lead in the series.
Like in Game 1, Washington was the more aggressive team from the start but struggled to turn that into goals. In other words, they do tend to deliver when installed as a big home-ice favorite.
Now, for the good Caps news.
A scoreless first period didn't do much to help these teams hit the over in Game 1. One game into Round 2, and he's been nothing short of spectacular. But it took time. The Capitals had suffered their first four-game losing streak in four years with a blowout loss in Anaheim in March, and the team huddled inside the locker room for roughly 15 minutes after the game. "I think that would be our biggest mistake is to get frustrated right now", said T.J. "All three [Pens] goals were very preventable". "Why would you think otherwise?" "That's why they have that line there". "Sometimes you don't get some for a while and then they come in bunches and it's nice to see a couple go in".More news: NHL Playoffs: Minus Crosby, Penguins Edge Capitals to Take 3-1 Lead
They looked vulnerable at times in their opening series against Toronto's youth and speed, but superior talent eventually prevailed.
The Penguins came to the District with two goals. Otherwise, ice won't be back on the floor of the Verizon Centre until September.
Crosby scored two goals in 52 seconds, Bonino had the victor in the third period and Fleury made dazzling saves with and without his stick, helping the Pittsburgh Penguins beat the Washington Capitals 3-2 Thursday night in Game 1 of their highly anticipated second-round series. Because the Pens, as they'll tell you, are clutch.
"They're a privilege to coach, this group", said Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan. "He brings his best game when things are [important]".
"We've got to get our shots through and around the blocks", Trotz said. "It's not flawless by any stretch out there". We're going to go there and see what we're made of.
"We have four lines that can play offense or play just in general and be risky", Brassard said. Then, with a Caps win, a long, thrilling series will unfold.More news: Justice will not charge Baton Rouge officers