Published November 20, 2014
OTTAWA (AP) — Pascal Dupuis scored 9:56 into overtime for the Pittsburgh Penguins, who erased a three-goal deficit and eliminated the Ottawa Senators from the playoffs with a 4-3 victory in Game 6 on Saturday night.
The Senators led 3-0 in the second period and appeared to go up 4-1 in the frame, but lost a goal to video replay when it was determined the puck crossed the line after the net was knocked off its moorings.
Matt Cooke scored his second of the game with 7:36 left in regulation to tie it at 3. Bill Guerin had a goal earlier in the third, a period in which Pittsburgh held an 18-4 shots advantage.
Matt Cullen and Daniel Alfredsson each had a goal and an assist for Ottawa, which won Game 5 at Pittsburgh in triple overtime to stave off elimination. The Senators hoped to force a decisive Game 7 back in the Steel City.
Dupuis made sure a return trip wouldn't be necessary. He took Jordan Staal's pass from the left corner and fired a shot past Pascal Leclaire for the winner.
Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 28 shots as the Penguins won the eighth time in nine playoff series after they were eliminated by Ottawa in five games in the first round in 2007.
The fourth-seeded Penguins will have to wait for the remaining two Eastern Conference first-round series to end to know who they will face next.
Leclaire made 38 saves, and Chris Neil also scored for the Senators, who missed the playoffs last season to end a run of 11 straight postseason appearances.
Leclaire, who took the loss in Game 4 after relieving Brian Elliott, gave Ottawa a strong effort for a second straight game after he was barely used down the stretch in the regular season.
Guerin drove a one-timer from the left circle off Leclaire's left arm and into the net 7:03 into the third to draw the Penguins within 3-2. Cooke tied it with a backhand into an open side at 12:24.
Leclaire made his first career playoff start Thursday, setting a team record with 56 saves in the Senators' 4-3 win. Matt Carkner scored the winning goal in that one to end the longest game in Senators history.
Neil and Alfredsson had goals in the second period to put Ottawa up 3-0 after Cullen scored on a breakaway in the first.
Cooke made it 3-1 when he put a backhand of Staal's rebound past Leclaire at 10:56.
Cullen scored his third goal on a breakaway 5:19 in after he got open behind defensemen Kris Letang and Mark Eaton to take Alfredsson's pass up the middle. Fleury went for the poke check, and Cullen fired the puck into the top of the net to put Ottawa up 1-0.
Mike Rupp came close to drawing Pittsburgh even at 12:40. Leclaire's pad save on the goal line was subjected to a lengthy video review that supported referee Wes McCauley's ruling that the puck didn't go over the line.
Neil made it 2-0 with his third goal 1:51 into the second, and Alfredsson put the Senators ahead by three when he moved to his forehand to beat Leclaire inside the right post for his second of the series.
A very long video review overturned an apparent Ottawa goal by Mike Fisher at 16:19 that would have restored the Senators' three-goal lead.
NOTES: Referee Stephen Walkom had a gash on his left cheek after he was struck by the stick of Penguins captain Sidney Crosby late in the first. ... The defending Stanley Cup champion Penguins' six-game loss to Detroit in the 2008 finals was Pittsburgh's only loss in the eight previous series. With the series win, the Penguins are assured of playing at least two more games at Mellon Arena — their longtime home. The Penguins will move into the new Consol Energy Center next season.