After the Capitals scored early, the Penguins scored often to stun their rivals with yet another comeback.
Patric Hornqvist, Sidney Crosby and Jake Guentzel scored in a 4:49 span to help Pittsburgh erase a two-goal deficit in the third period and the Penguins beat Washington 3-2 on Thursday night in Game 1 of the second-round series.
“I thought he was locked in all night long,” coach Mike Sullivan said. “He made some big saves for us, especially when they were pressing down the stretch there. … When you get those types of saves, it’s easy to play with some confidence in front of him.”
Murray couldn’t predict a furious comeback, but he wasn’t shocked, either. Not after Pittsburgh has won nine consecutive playoff series dating to 2016, including two against these Capitals.
Eric Karabell: I am paying close attention to Cincinnati Reds infielder Nick Senzel, for it is important which position he plays and how he does at the plate. It’s a bit like Acuna’s call-up foolishly being delayed by the Braves because he wasn’t hitting like a star in the minors. He never wanted to be there in the first place. Neither does Senzel. He can hit in the majors right now and should be hitting second in the Reds’ regular lineup and is capable of playing second base and third base. The Reds have nothing special at shortstop, but I can understand why he is not being pushed to play there. On the pitching side I’ll also watch Chicago White Sox right-hander Michael Kopech. The strikeout ability is so special I think he is worth stashing now, even if the White Sox are bad and wait a few months to call him up.
Tristan H. Cockcroft: For me it’s Senzel, whom I think would already be in the majors if he had begun the Triple-A season with better hitting stats — he’s hitting .246/.333/.361 through 15 games for Louisville. In fact, I preferred Senzel to Torres for the 2018 full season at the onset of the regular season, once both had been assigned to the minors, as the Reds showed a willingness to be creative with Senzel’s position, which is sure to accelerate his ascent to the majors. Through those 15 games, Senzel has made nine starts at second base and six at third base, and he also logged some time at shortstop during spring training.