The Pittsburgh Penguins lead the Washington Capitals, 6-2, in the third period of tonight's Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals at Verizon Center.
Sidney Crosby has two goals and an assist for the Penguins.
The sellout crowd stood to give the Capitals a final ovation over the final two minutes.
Alex Ovechkin broke up Marc-Andre Fleury's shutout bid on a gift goal with 1:51 left in the second. Fleury went behind the net to play the puck and gave it way to Ovechkin, who wrapped it into the empty net for his 11th of the playoffs and eighth of the series. The shots were 23-12 in favor of Pittsburgh after Ovechkin's goal, which cut it to 5-1.
Bill Guerin and Kris Letang scored in the opening 2:12 of the second period to increase the Pens' lead to 4-0.
Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau pulled rookie goaltender Simeon Varlamov after Letang's goal. Varlamov wasn't great, but didn't get much help from his teammate. He gave up four goals on 18 shots. The Penguins scored on their first two shots of the second period.
This is the first time in the series that either team has led by more than two goals.
Guerin made it 3-0 just 28 seconds into the second period by taking a feed from Sidney Crosby and ripping a one-timer over Varlamov's right shoulder. Letang made it 4-0 on a blast from the right circle at 2:12.
Crosby has a goal and an assist in the game and 12 points (seven goals, five assists) in the series.
This is Jose Theodore's first action since Game 1 of the Rangers' series.
Jordan Staal made it 5-0 by redirecting in a feed from Miroslav Satan at 11:37.
Alex Ovechkin tried to run Evgeni Malkin with 5:23 left in the second period, but Malkin ducked and Ovechkin flattened teammated Nicklas Backstrom instead.
Crosby and Craig Adams scored eight seconds apart to give the Penguins a 2-0 lead in the first period.
The Penguins outshot the Capitals, 16-5, in the opening period.
Crosby scored a power-play goal at 12:36 -- his league-leading 11th goal of the playoffs and seventh of this series, tying him with Alex Ovechkin for the most in the series.
Sergei Gonchar's right point shot deflected off the stick of Washington's David Steckel between the circles and came directly to Crosby at the right side of the net. Crosby deftly kicked the puck out of his skates and fired the puck into the net behind Simeon Varlamov.
Adams made it 2-0 at 12:44 by beating Varlamov between the legs with a shot from the right circle.
That was a bad goal by Varlomov, who has not played as well the last four games as he did in the first three of the series. That was the first playoff goal of Adams' career.
Varlamov made six saves during the Sergei Fedorov interference penalty, so he redeemed himself a little.
Well, that was some glove save by Marc-Andre Fleruy on Alex Ovechkin on a breakaway at 3:01. Fleury embellished a little, but it was still a big save early in this game.
Simeon Varlamov had a good blocker save on Ruslan Fedotenko's shot from between the circles at 2:21.
The Caps have had a lot of turnovers in their zone so far, but have blocked a lot of shots (six), too.
The Shots are 5-4 Pittsburgh with 9:00 left in the first period.
It's very loud in the building. There are very few people wearing shirts that aren't red.
Here are the starting lineups for tonight's Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals between the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Washington Capitals at Verizon Center.
Forwards: Chris Kunitz-Sidney Crosby-Bill Guerin. Defensemen: .Brooks Orpik-Sergei Gonchar Goaltender: Marc-Andre Fleury.
Forwards: Brooks Laich-David Steckel-Matt Bradley. Defensemen: Shaone Morrisonn-Mike Green. Goaltender: Simeon Varlamov.
Gonchar is playing for the Penguins tonight after missing the last two games with a right knee injury.
Welcome to a special non-Devils live post from Verizon Center. Pre-game warm-ups are underway for tonight's Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals between the Washington Capitals and the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Penguins defenseman Sergei Gonchar is on the ice for warm-ups after missing the last two games with a right knee injury. Gonchar was injured in a knee-on-knee collision with Washington's Alex Ovechkin in the first period of Game 4.
Ovechkin leads all scorers in the series with seven goals and 13 points. Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby has 10 points (six goals, four assists) in the series.
The winner of tonight's game advances to the Eastern Conference Finals to face the winner of Thursday night's Game 7 between Boston and Carolina.
The Capitals forced a Game 7 with a 5-4 overtime victory in Game 6 on Monday night in Pittsburgh.