Cole gives Penguins yet another lead vs. Sharks after first period

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Metallica sure seemed to set the tone for a lightning-fast (one might even say speed-metal-like) start to Game 4 of the Stanley Cup Final.

There weren’t a ton of actual shots on goal, yet the action was exciting and there were plenty of close calls.

Ultimately, the Pittsburgh Penguins once again enjoyed a lead – the San Jose Sharks haven’t had to protect one yet with Game 3’s overtime goal in mind – as they ended the first period up 1-0.

An unexpected trend

The Penguins have enjoyed remarkable production from defensemen not named Kris Letang during this series. Ben Lovejoy helped produce some big points in Game 3, while an ultra-rare Ian Cole goal stood as the only tally in the first period.

It came after Brian Dumoulin somehow didn’t score the 1-0 goal; when you consider Justin Braun‘s production for San Jose, the 2016 Stanley Cup Final has been surprisingly rich in offense for lesser-known blueliners.

Understatement: goals have been rare for Cole.

Again, there were some memorable moments, such as this Marc-Edouard Vlasic interference on Sidney Crosby:

The Sharks are standing toe-to-toe with the Penguins, yet they’re still struggling to get on the board. We’ll see if that changes going forward.

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