Patric Hornqvist scored with 1:35 left in the third period and Matt Murray made 27 saves for his second straight shutout as the Penguins became the first team in nearly two decades to repeat as NHL champion.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Sidney Crosby is bringing the Stanley Cup back home to Pittsburgh for a second consecutive year. He’s bringing another MVP trophy, too.
Patric Hornqvist scored with 1:35 left in the third period and Matt Murray made 27 saves for his second straight shutout as the Penguins became the first team in nearly two decades to repeat as champion. Pittsburgh posted a 2-0 victory over the Nashville Predators in Game 6 of the best-of-seven Stanley Cup Final on Sunday night.
The Penguins won their fifth title — all of them clinched on the road — to tie the Wayne Gretzky-Mark Messier-era Edmonton Oilers for sixth on the all-time list. The Detroit Red Wings in 1997 and 1998 were the last champions to successfully defend their title. The Penguins are the first team to do it in the salary-cap era.
“We knew it was going to be tough all year, but we just tried to keep with it,” Crosby said. “We had a lot of injuries and things like that. We just kept finding ways. That was really what we did all season, all playoffs. It’s great to be able to do it.”
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Crosby became the third player to win the Conn Smythe Trophy in consecutive years as the playoff MVP to go along with his third championship. He led the Final in points with one goal and six assists, including three in a 6-0 win in Game 5 that put the Penguins on the doorstep of another title. Only teammate Evgeni Malkin (28 points) had more than Crosby’s 27 this postseason.
“You have a small window to play and have a career,” Crosby said. “I feel fortunate, but I also understand how difficult it was, so you just want to try to make the best of it.”
Hornqvist scored off Nashville goalie…