For the second year in a row, the Pittsburgh Penguins will take home the Stanley Cup.
Patric Hornqvist’s goal late in the third period gave the Pens a 1–0 lead and the Predators were unable to find an answer in the waning moments.
Hornqvist was behind the end line, but somehow managed to put the puck off the back of Pekka Rinne’s elbow and it deflected into the back of the net. Nashville challenged the call on the ice but the officials ruled that Hornqvist did not interfere with Rinne.
Carl Hagelin scored an empty-net goal with 13.5 seconds to play, putting the final nail in the coffin.
That the game ended 1–0 in favor of Pittsburgh is especially significant given what happened early in the second period. Colton Sissons should have put the Preds on the board first with a diving tap-in but the referee prematurely blew the whistle, nullifying the goal.
Sidney Crosby, who had eight goals and 19 assists during the playoffs, won the Conn Smythe Trophy for the second straight year. He’s the first to accomplish that feat since Mario Lemieux in 1991 and 1992.
The Penguins are the first team to win the Cup in consecutive years since the Red Wings in 1997 and 1998.