Five telling stats from the Penguins-Predators series

"We need to spend more time in the offensive zone".

The defending Stanley Cup champion Penguins were outshot for the fourth straight game, but Pittsburgh was outscored 9-2 in the two losses at Bridgestone Arena.

Somehow, even with an apparent catfish ban for Predators fans, a catfish donned in a typical Pittsburgh "Terrible Towel" was thrown out onto the ice, as an apparent troll of the tradition held up by Predators fans in Nashville. The Penguins are 4-0 in their last 4 Thursday games and the under is 4-1-2 in Penguins last 7 when their opponent allows 2 goals or less in their previous game while the Penguins are 1-4 in their last 5 games playing on 2 days rest. Bonino has missed the past two games after taking a shot to the left foot or ankle. And in Nashville, when those flashes came, Rinne was the best player on the ice, limiting the Penguins to one goal for the fifth and sixth times in the past 11 games. When the Penguins had just three goals during the first three games of the Eastern Conference finals against Ottawa last month, they scored 10 over the next two to take control.

There's no shortage of confidence for Penguins goalies Matt Murray and Marc-Andre Fleury, but they've split the duties nearly evenly so far in the playoffs. Until Mike Sullivan makes something official, expect the chatter to continue.

The Predators have been the better team for much of this series, but unlike in the games in Pittsburgh, it's now translating into actual victories. But Thursday in Game 5 would be a great time to actually pot one.

Rookie Pontus Aberg has a pair of goals and five points after mustering only a single goal and assist during 15 regular season games.

Coach Mike Sullivan confirmed after morning skate that he had chosen Murray over Marc-Andre Fleury.

The problem was never Sidney Crosby. "The puck just wasn't going in for us".

"Having said that, I thought tonight, of all the games we played, we generated the most chances and the highest quality".

There has been little that has gone right for the Penguins with the man up.

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Cullen first entered the NHL in 1998 and has played for more than a quarter of the league's teams, spending three seasons with the Minnesota Wild from 2010-13. "He can score goals".

Seven shots, in 16 power plays over the first four games. Or rather, it belonged to the Penguins captain. With Malkin, he's shot the puck a lot less (2.8 per-game) but still remained largely productive.

That's definitely going to have to improve. The coach who has made "play the right way" part of the franchise's lexicon is more focused on the process. The Predators' forechecking has been absolutely relentless, and has been an endless nightmare for the Penguins' defensemen.

The Predators think they're in a pretty good spot, too, with two wins in a row. "We all know it". He just has the ability to make plays around him better.

He's far from the only unexpected contributor for Nashville during these playoffs.

Frederick Gaudreau sure is doing his best to earn his own locker with the Nashville Predators with a Stanley Cup Final debut for the ages. Or can the Predators build off dominant efforts in games three and four and break through on the road. The Predators in past years have given out a construction worker's hard hat to recognize the best player in a game. But, that was something that was expected heading into the series.

Murray also had a positive mind-set.

It's a good thing he didn't, because anyone who watched the Preds even the series should know Rinne probably is the biggest reason why. Like Rinne, Murray didn't play as well on the road as at home.

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