Published: Tue, June 06, 2017
USA | By Kelli Rowe

Pekka Rinne makes save of the year candidate in Game 4


Nashville Predators goalie Pekka Rinne deflects a shot from Pittsburgh Penguins' Patric Hornqvist (72) as Predators' Roman Josi (59), of Switzerland, defends during the first period in Game 4 of the NHL hockey Stanley Cup Finals Monday, June 5, 2017, in Nashville, Tenn. He became the first defenseman with three points in a period in a Stanley Cup Final game since Larry Murphy had three assists for Pittsburgh on May 23, 1991, against Minnesota. He wasn't at his best in the first two games, but he's been brilliant the last two games.

The Nashville Predators breathed new life into the Stanley Cup Final with a 4-1 victory over the defending champion Pittsburgh Penguins on Monday, squaring the National Hockey League championship series at 2-2 with three to play.

Game 5 is Thursday night in Pittsburgh.

Nashville's Calle Jarnkrok was the first to get the puck past Matt Murray, scoring 5:09 into the first period.

There was no better evidence of this in Game 4 than this incredible sequence of saves, in which Rinne stoned Sidney Crosby - who had already beaten him once on a breakaway - and then dove across the crease to keep a Jake Guentzel potential tying goal out of the net. The second goal, he almost made a sprawling save, and at first the referee thought he did.

Rookie Frederick Gaudreau, who is a recent call up to Predators' line up due to injuries, got this wraparound goal past Murray that took everyone a while to notice.

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Nashville goaltender Pekka Rinne made 23 saves, including an array of spectacular stops in the second period, after Gaudreau had put the Predators ahead. Nashville was 2-of-3 on the power play in its Game 3 victory.

Malkin finished with two shots as the Penguins ended up being outscored 9-2 in Nashville.

Crosby had another breakaway almost midway through the period, and Rinne stopped him not once, but twice. It was one of four shots on goal for Crosby in the game.

They've taken care of that in the first period of Game 4.

The Predators scored twice in the second period, taking a 3-1 lead on goals by Gaudreau and Viktor Arvidsson.

"He's been unbelievable for us the way he's come in, and he's just been so good, timely goals and composed", Nashville captain Mike Fisher said. With his goal, Crosby now has 161 career playoff points and moved past Mike Bossy, Gordie Howe, Al MacInnis and Bobby Smith for 20th all-time by himself.

Predators even Stanley Cup final at 2-2 with win over Penguins
The 24-year-old undrafted rookie, who didn't score in nine games during the regular season, has three goals in six playoff games. Diving back to the open net, Rinne made his fourth and most important save in the flurry of chances to keep the score 2-1.


A fan in Nashville added some flair to the tradition of throwing catfish on the ice, sending one over the glass with a bedazzled top hat and a toy penguin in its mouth Monday night.

Prior to Game 4, the Predators were trailing the Pittsburgh Penguins two games to one. They said it was a bad idea to give a franchise to Nashville.

Charles Barkley has taken advantage of a day off in the NBA Finals and accepted NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman's invitation to come watch the Stanley Cup Final in person.

"I would've voted for our '87 team", Wayne Gretzky said.

"They just skate themselves out of trouble", Crosby said.

"You've got trust what gets you here", Crosby said.

Preds even Stanley Cup Final at 2-2, beat Penguins
Victor Arvidsson's breakaway goal at 13:08 gave Nashville a two-goal cushion and that was that. "We believe in the group we have". Gaudreau, 24, is playing for Nashville now, largely because of a season-ending injury to the team's No. 1 centre, Ryan Johansen .


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