Concussed Crosby skates with Penguins, no word on return

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09 May, 2017

Hornqvist gave Pittsburgh a 1-0 lead at 4:39 of the first when he split defensemen Brooks Orpik and Karl Alzner for a breakaway down the slot. As potential restricted free agents, Evgeny Kuznetsov, Andre Burakovsky and Dmitry Orlov each will be due a significant raise that will make it impossible for the Capitals to keep most of their unrestricted free agents and stay under the salary cap.

Patrick Eaves was scratched Wednesday due to a lower-body injury suffered in Game 3, so Corey Perry was reunited with Getzlaf on Anaheim's top line with Rakell.

Just over a minute later, Nate Schmidt ripped a shot past an out-of-position Fleury to tie the game.

There were two things that stopped the Capitals' offense tonight. Capitals centre Jay Beagle broke his foot in the second round against the New York Rangers in 2012, an injury that contributed to a Game 5 loss and an absence that cost Washington the series.

Pittsburgh Penguins captain Sidney Crosby skated with team mates on Thursday but no timetable was given for the two-time NHL Most Valuable Player's return from the fourth reported concussion of his career.

It's Pittsburgh's series to lose now, and the Capitals only have themselves to blame for their untimely Game 4 mistakes.

The alternative for the Capitals is a harsh reality they've been facing down for two seasons. "We were able to score a couple, get early pace and we were able to bring it home and win the game", (see full recap).

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Frankly, they need a lot to happen, to the Penguins and to them- so bad and good. He also acknowledged that would be hard without Crosby in the lineup. If they can't win now, I'm not sure their time will ever come. "But we've got [Malkin], we've got Phil [Kessel], whoever else steps up on that unit". Oshie in the box with two minutes to go and effectively killed any chance Washington had at a hopeful comeback.

That wasn't the case in the first period, as the Penguins squandered two more power-play opportunities.

Justin Schultz scored the game-winner on the power play with 8:36 remaining in the second. That's not exactly the type of aggressiveness in the offensive zone the Capitals were looking for in this crucial game.

Resilient Pittsburgh played Game 4 of its Eastern Conference semifinal series without its best forward and the league's best player (Sidney Crosby). But you can count on Ovechkin shouldering most of the load if this series ends in five short games.

Gibson held off the Oilers over the first 10 minutes of the game when they outshot the Ducks 8-3.

Shot-blocking is still an essential part of playoff hockey, though the risk-reward value of the time-honoured tradition filled with bruises and broken bones is being questioned like never before.


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