Penguins—Capitals: Game Seven Lasts Three Minutes

Chris MillerCorrespondent IMay 14, 2009

WASHINGTON - MAY 13:  Alex Ovechkin #8 of the Washington Capitals is stopped by Marc-Andre Fleury #29 of the Pittsburgh Penguins during first period action in Game Seven of the Eastern Conference Semifinal  Round of the 2009 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Verizon Center on May 13, 2009 in Washington, DC.The Penguins defeated the Capitals 6-2 to move into the semifinals.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

Did anyone see this coming?

The Hockey Gods surely do work in mysterious ways.

In a series that gave hockey fans everything, it failed to provide a Game Seven thriller.

On Wednesday night, the Pittsburgh Penguins weren't interested in theatrics.

Unlike the six previous games of the series going down to the final horn, this one lasted three minutes.

That's right, it lasted three minutes.

At that particular moment, it was Washington's chance to grab the lead, to fire up the team, and to further ignite an already rowdy crowd.

Alexander Ovechkin sneaked behind Rob Scuderi and found himself one-on-one with Penguins' goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury. Ovechkin closed in, his lethal stick handling combined with a deadly shot ready to jump start his team to an early lead. Ovechkin deked and shot glove side.

One word—robbed.

After Ovechkin's breakaway shot didn't find the back of the net, it seemed as if Washington never recovered.

FSN Pittsburgh's Color Analyst Bob Errey said it best.

"A save like that can take the steam out of a Washington Capitals bench."

And did it ever show.

Fleury's outstanding glove save changed everything for the Penguins, who discovered their goalie was back to his old ways.

Ten minutes into the first period, Pittsburgh held a 5-4 advantage in shots on goal in a scoreless game.

By the end of the period, the advantage was 16-5. Similar to Game Six where they outshot Washington 18-5 in the first period, the difference was the scoreboard. The Penguins managed to score more than once, tallying two in the period.

The second period showed, well, more of the same.

Before Washington even settled into their bench, it was 3-0. By the time they realized what had just happened, it was 4-0 with Simeon Varlamov demoted to spectator status.

By the time the onslaught was over, it was 6-2.  The crowd displayed speechless emotion, filling up the Verizon Center with broken hearts.  It's been rumored that some fans even decided to leave in the second period.  If they were smart, and in a hurry to leave Washington out to dry, they could've left much earlier.

Because it only took three minutes to discover the outcome of the game.

Pittsburgh would not be denied.