Three big Game 5's brought plenty of action on Saturday.
The Blues rolled past the Stars to take a 3-2 series lead to start off the hockey-filled day, while the Capitals forced a Game 6 with a win against the Penguins. In the final game of the day, the Sharks thumped the Predators to push them to the brink.
Here's who caught our eye:
Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals
Was this his finest game in the NHL? If nothing else, it might have been his most determined effort as he steered the Caps away from elimination for at least one more game. Ovechkin scored a power-play goal and assisted on another by T.J. Oshie, but it was his relentless presence all over the ice that made for a truly memorable performance.
Joe Pavelski, San Jose Sharks
The Sharks could have fallen into a deep hole after dropping a triple-OT decision in Game 4 but their captain wouldn't let them. Pavelski scored twice to pace San Jose's 5-1 win over the Predators in Game 5. The brace game him eight for the postseason, tied for the league lead, and 12 points in 10 games.
Brian Elliott, St. Louis Blues
Forget the lopsided score, Elliott was the difference maker in St. Louis's 4-1 win over Dallas on Saturday. He made 27 saves on the afternoon, including 12 in the third period as the Stars pressed to get back in the game. According to War On Ice, 11 of those shots counted as high-danger chances, an inordinately high percentage, including two back-to-back bids by Cody Eakin when the Blues were clinging to a 3-1 lead.
“You try to get over there and steal the ice and take care of any garbage left out in front,” he said. “It was kind of a bang-bang play. He didn’t have much room, so I just tried to be big.”