Kunitz's double-OT goal sends Penguins back to Stanley Cup

"One of the most unsafe shooters walking right down the pipe and [Kunitz] had an unbelievable block".

"I don't think we proved anything to ourselves", said the 30-year-old Ryan, eager to return to Ottawa after the bitter defeat.

Kunitz leads the Penguins to victory in Game Seven; Karlsson, Schultz, Anderson and more in Scott Cullen's Statistically Speaking.

The Pittsburgh Penguins host the Ottawa Senators at PPG Paints Arena on Thursday night for Game 7 of the Easter Conference final. And the biggest stars? Erik Karlsson - Ottawa's superstar defenceman had a pair of assists and played a game-high 39:33 in the Game Seven loss. While slowing down in the conference final amid injuries, fatigue and a nightly duel with Crosby, the 26-year-old captain had a sensational regular season and was even better in series wins over Boston and NY. "Whether or not he scores, that's something that we can't always control, but what he can do - and I know Rusty knows this - he's going to control his effort and his attitude and his focus and conviction, and when a player controls all of those things, he puts himself in the best position to be successful".

"It could be maturity", Kunitz said by way of explanation.

Malkin, with 153 career playoff points and 1.08 points per-game, sits only a touch behind Crosby statistically in the post-season, but nearly without exception it's Crosby who's drawn (and continues to draw) the opposition's fiercest opponent, including Erik Karlsson presently and P.K. Subban and Mattias Ekholm if the Pens prevail and face the Preds.

Kelly has yet to dress since the first round against Boston, but the 36-year-old forward does have 91 games of playoff experience.

In Game 7 of the Eastern Conference final, Bryan Rust scored the first and game-deciding goal in the second period.

An unrestricted free agent at the end of this season, Chris Kunitz might be nearing the end of his tenure with the Penguins. Kunitz finished off a Sheary pass, ending a long goal drought. At the start of this season, no one could have predicted that the Sens could be one win away from an appearance in the Stanley Cup Finals.

"He's one of those guys for us who has shown the ability to be the very best when the stakes are at the highest", he said. "He's been here before". "I just tried to lay it there for him". During that stretch, which began last season, he's captured a Stanley Cup, Conn Smythe Trophy, World Cup of Hockey, World Cup of Hockey MVP, Rocket Richard trophy and back-to-back finishes as a Hart trophy finalist. Maybe it's not knowing if he'll get the chance to skate with this team again at all.

Chances for either side were limited and space was at a premium on Thursday night.

"It's not a lot of fun thinking about the future when you want to be here and you want to be playing with your teammates", he said.