The Eastern Conference semifinal series between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Ottawa Senators was, for the most part, a story of two teams at different points in their respective evolutions.
The Penguins’ core has Stanley Cup experience, including a championship ring, and the 2013 team, upgraded prior to the trade deadline, is showing every sign of returning to the final.
The Senators have a young nucleus of players, with eyes toward the future.
The Senators were taken to school in this series. The Penguins won Game 5 by a final score of 6-2, taking the series 4-1 over Ottawa.
The Penguins are now off to the Eastern Conference final for the first time since 2009, when they won the Stanley Cup.
For the Senators, it’s a stern learning experience.
“I think we got a lesson on what it takes to keep playing in the Stanley Cup playoffs from a very good team,” said Senators’ head coach Paul MacLean, as per Chris Johnston of Sportsnet.
“I hope they don’t bill us for the clinic.”