Game Four Preview: #WBSPens Backs to the Wall

Friday, May 17, 2013
The Penguins look to stave off elimination for the first time this playoffs tonight in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinal at the Mohegan Sun Arena. The puck drops at 7:05 p.m. EDT. 

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Only two teams in league history have won a best-of-seven series after dropping the first three games. A closer look at how the series got to where it is now as well as an expected lineup for tonight's game after the jump.

Re-visiting The Series

In Game One, the Penguins got off to a fast start and did not look like a team coming into the series with eight days rest. They jumped out to a 1-0 lead and a 17-6 shot advantage in the first period but the Bruins offense turned it up in the 2nd period. The Penguins got away from their style of play and it turned into a track meet. Surprisingly, the Penguins battled back and found a way to get it to 6-5 game in the final minutes but the Bruins closed the door, taking the opening game 8-5.

The Penguins got right back to it the next night in Game Two, again getting a good start and scoring the games first goal. Again the Bruins top line of Chris Bourque, Ryan Sponer and Jamie Tardif powered their team to a four goal first period. The Penguins made some improvements on their defensive coverage but were unable to pick up a win up in Rhode Island.

Wednesday night in Game Three, the Penguins played their best game of the series. They shutdown Bourque, Spooner and Tardif, were shorthanded only twice and played their game. They tied up the game at 1 midway through the second period and controlled much of play the rest of regulation. But, a series of unfortunate events led to a Bruins goal 31 seconds into the first overtime, leaving the Penguins in a 3-0 series hole and no margin for error tonight in Game Four.

Expected Starters in Net

Penguins - Brad Thiessen (1-1, 1.51 GAA, .932 SV%, 0 SO)
Bruins - Niklas Svedberg (6-2, 3.18 GAA, .902 SV%, 0 SO)

Expected lineup:

Nesbitt - Smith - Kolarik
Collins - Gibbons - Thompson 
Holzapfel - Peters - Payerl
Minella - Sill - Megna

If Dylan Reese is ready to return, I'd expect he would be in the lineup for either Cody Wild or Reid McNeill. If not, the same six will play and look like this:



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