Thursday, May 26th, 2016


Penguins Advance to First Stanley Cup Final Since 2009; Sharks Make First Stanley Cup Final Appearance in Franchise History

Full Stanley Cup Final Telecast Schedule Announced Friday

STAMFORD, Conn. – May 26, 2016 – The Pittsburgh Penguins advanced to the 2016 Stanley Cup Final with a 2-1 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning in Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Final tonight on NBCSN. Bryan Rust scored both of the Penguins’ goals to give Pittsburgh its first Game 7 win at home since 1995.

Four-time Emmy Award-winning play-by-play commentator Mike ‘Doc’ Emrick, U.S. Hockey Hall of Fame member and analyst Eddie Olczyk, and Emmy Award-winning Inside-the-Glass analyst Pierre McGuire called tonight’s Game 7 matchup. NBCSN’s NHL Live studio team featured host Liam McHugh, and analysts Mike Milbury and Keith Jones.


Following are quotes from tonight’s Game 7 coverage between the Lightning and Penguins:


Eddie Olczyk on Sharks-Penguins Stanley Cup Final: “The one thing I think everyone needs to know is the name Joe Pavelski. Over the course of last three years in the NHL, there’s only one player that’s scored more goals than Joe Pavelski – and that’s Alex Ovechkin.”

Olczyk on the Sharks: “The Penguins should expect a team that’s deeper, quicker than Tampa, and a team that’s playing with a lot of confidence.”

Doc Emrick on Lightning-Penguins: “Two teams that started out the season with a disappointing first two months. Even a coaching change was necessary in Pittsburgh, and then gallantly waged a seven-game battle here in the Eastern Conference Final.”

Pierre McGuire to Rust, who scored both goals for the Penguins: “When the season started and you were in training camp, is this the way you envisioned things playing out?”

Bryan Rust: “I was just trying to make the team and trying to make an impact. I guess this was a pretty good way for it to go.”

Mike Milbury on Rust’s eventual game-winner: “Unfortunately, for Vasilevskiy, he’ll have a nightmarish memory for the rest of his life on that cheap goal that cost them…he’ll have nightmares for the rest of his life over that goal…we hear about all of the opportunity that coaches have been talking about going into Game 7. Well the opportunity is for great success, or miserable moments like Andrei Vasilevskiy suffered and will continue to roll through his mind for many years to come.”

Keith Jones: “And the worst part about that goal is that it’s a goal that Ben Bishop doesn’t let in, because of how he gets his stick on the puck…Mike’s right. You’re not going to forget about it. This is one that is going to stay with you for life.”


McGuire on Bryan Rust: “Bryan Rust is becoming a superhero to the fans of the Pittsburgh Penguins.”


Liam McHugh on Rust: “We entered the evening wondering if rust would be a factor for Steven Stamkos. We never imagined how huge a factor Rust would be for Pittsburgh.”

Jones on Rust and younger Penguins players: “Mike Sullivan has great confidence in his younger players. He uses Conor Sheary on the top line with Sidney Crosby. Bryan Rust is on the second line with Evgeni Malkin, and with good reason.”

Milbury on Lightning goalie Andrei Vasilevskiy and second Penguins goal: “It was all Pittsburgh in that period. Vasilevskiy was tested under constant pressure and duress, and was big, but for one exception…there’s no excuse. He’s got to be able to tie that puck up. There’s no way it should be past him…it’s the difference in this hockey game, and it will be a nightmare for him if it ends that way. But give him credit – he got right back in the swing of things…when they needed it, he was very good.”

Jones on Penguins’ pressure: “It’s been an all-out blitz from the Pittsburgh Penguins. They look like the Steelers trying to rush the quarterback.”

Milbury on Stamkos: “For the love of Pete, if he’s okay, put Steven Stamkos on the ice. He had about less than two minutes (in the second period), he’s got about six minutes for the game. We’ve seen him with good contact, we’ve seen him with a great shot. I’m scratching my head.”



McGuire on Bryan Rust’s second goal, 2-1 Penguins: “Ben Lovejoy has had a tremendous Playoffs. He shoots it wide off the end boards – that was planned by Lovejoy. Rust wins the race.”

Olczyk on Rust’s second goal, 30 seconds after Drouin’s tying goal: “What an answer by the Penguins.”

Emrick on the drama of a Game 7: “It’s a Game 7. When you anticipate this, you think of a lot of things. You hope it’s dramatic and you hope it’s close. So far, it’s been both.”


Jones: “This was an evenly-played period. Having Steven Stamkos in there made a difference. He competed for loose pucks, he battled – he didn’t shy away from physical contact.”

Milbury on Stamkos: “They came out even after one period in an elimination game and settled things down – he’s already done his job.”


Emrick on first period: “Attack has been met by resistance – the story of the first period thus far.”



Jones on potential of Steven Stamkos playing, out since March 31 due to a blood clot: “You don’t walk him into a game and pretend he’s going to play. This is a superstar talent. I would be shocked if he’s not in there.”

Milbury: “We tried to figure out if this was some sort of a ruse, what would it accomplish? To get the focus off of his team, to get his team loose, to make it a personal joke against the media? A stretch for me.”

Jones on Stamkos: “I walked into the building today and thought this was Pittsburgh’s game. This changes things. Now it’s even.”

Emrick on Lightning-Penguins Series: “It’s the seventh game of an outstanding, wonderfully chaotic series.”