Tonight, the Ottawa Senators and Pittsburgh Penguins will meet for the fifth time in Stanley Cup Playoffs history. The Penguins have dominated the matchup, winning the last three meetings between the two teams. The Senators only win came back in 2007 on their way to winning the Cup.
Ottawa Senators and Pittsburgh Penguins Playoff History
The Senators Crush the Penguins Hope
In the 2007 Stanley Cup Playoffs, Ottawa and Pittsburgh were pitted against each other in the first round. The Senators finished fourth in the Eastern Conference. The Penguins finished fifth. The teams splits the first two games, but Ottawa stole the third in Pittsburgh. This set up Game 4 as a must win game for the Penguins.
However, the Senators had different plans, coming out and scoring on a power play in the opening minutes. A pass by Jason Spezza deflected off a defenseman, went over goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury’s head, and into the net. Jordan Staal would then tie the game late in the second for the Penguins. With the puck out in front of the net Staal poked it past Emery to make it a 1-1 game.
Midway through the third period, the Senators would grab the lead for good as Anton Volchenkov slapped the puck over Fluery’s shoulder. This would give the Senators a 3-1 series lead, crushing the Penguins hopes. The series headed back to Ottawa where the Senators won game five with ease.
The Penguins Get Revenge
The Penguins and the Senators would meet again in the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs just a year later. The 2008 edition would be nothing like the series the year before. Pittsburgh set the tone of the series early with a 4-0 win on home ice.
Game 2 of the series looked like it was going to be the same, with the Penguins scoring the first three goals. The Senators had an answer however, scoring three unanswered goals to tie the game midway through the third. Then with 1:02 left the game changed. The Penguins, on the power play, scored the game winner. The Penguins scored an empty-netter to seal the deal and take a two game leading heading to Ottawa.
The Penguins went on to win the next two games to sweep the Senators. However, most embarrassing moment of the series for the Senators might have come during the introduction. For Game 3, the Senators had an actor dress up as a spartan and give a pregame speech to the crowd. In theory, this may have been a good idea, but the execution was horrible. The helmet of the actor was way too big and almost fell off his head repeatedly. That caused the mic to repeatedly cut in and out, and the script can clearly be seen written on the inside of his shield.
Penguins Again in 2010
In 2010, after winning the first game in Pittsburgh, the Senators dropped the next three to the Penguins. The series looked like it was going to be just like the previous two, domination by one team. Ottawa had a different idea though taking Game 5 into triple overtime before scoring the game winner and forcing a Game 6.
Game 6 started out just as the Senators hoped. They scored the first three goals in front of their home crowd. Then, Matt Cooke got things rolling for the Penguins halfway through the second period, and the momentum shifted. From that point on, it was all Pittsburgh. They two more goals and forced overtime. Then, with nearly half the overtime period gone, Pascal Dupuis decided it was time to move on.
Explosive Offense Leads the Penguins
The 2013 version of this matchup would be the first time it took place in the second round. With a trip to the Conference Finals on the line, each team needed to play their best. Only one did. Pittsburgh took the first two games in front of their home crowd. Scoring four goals in each game, the Penguins offense could not be stopped. Game 2 was a close game, but Sidney Crosby’s hat trick proved to be too much for the Senators to overcome.
The Senators would slow the dynamic offense enough in Game 3, though. Pittsburgh scored the opening goal of the game in the opening minutes of the second period. The Senators did not score the next goal until there were 29 seconds left in the game. While on the penalty kill, Daniel Alfredsson scored to force overtime for the Senators. In the second overtime period, Colin Greening gave the Senators their only win with this goal:
The Penguins would win the next two games with ease as their explosive offense went back to work. Pittsburgh scored seven and six goals in games four and five, and Ottawa simply could not keep up. The Penguins advanced after just five games.