Skip to main content

Three Stars: Penguins’ Bonino the overtime hero in Game 6

The Pittsburgh Penguins made the most of playing at home in Game 6, dispatching the Capitals to advance to the Eastern Conference finals. Here's who stood out to us on Tuesday.

Get all of Allan Muir’s columns as soon as they’re published. Download the new Sports Illustrated app (iOS or Android) and personalize your experience by following your favorite teams and SI writers.

The Pittsburgh Penguins made the most of hosting Game 6, dispatching the Washington Capitals in overtime to advance to the Eastern Conference finals.

Here's who stood out to us on Tuesday:

Nick Bonino, Pittsburgh Penguins

Watch: Penguins’ Bonino scores series-clincher in OT

Pittsburgh's third line might have been the best unit in the entire series, so it was fitting that it was Bonino who ended Game 6 in overtime. And fortunate. The speedy center was fitted for goat horns in the third when put the Caps on the power play with a delay of game penalty, but redeemed himself when he grabbed Carl Hagelin's rebound and stuffed it past a prone Braden Holtby 6:32 into OT. It was his second goal and fifth point of the series.

Phil Kessel, Pittsburgh Penguins

Can we agree that Kessel is a money player now? Kessel opened the scoring on a devastating wrister, then extended the lead less than three minutes later on the power play. He later added an assist on Bonino's winner, giving him 18 goals and 33 points in 33 career playoff games. The only active players with a higher points-per-game average? Teammates Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin.


Carl Hagelin, Pittsburgh Penguins

There might not have been a better player on the ice tonight than Hagelin. If only he could finish...

The speedy winger hit a pair of posts and was robbed on back-to-back chances by Holtby that could have broken the game open early. He settled for a power-play goal in the first and an assist on Bonino's winner.