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WASHINGTON — Washington Capitals winger Jakub Vrana is playing in just his first playoff series against the rival Pittsburgh Penguins Marcus Davenport Jersey , yet he has a pretty good grasp of things.

“Everybody knows it’s a big rivalry. We kind of hate each other,” the 22-year-old Vrana told reporters Friday. “We go at it and we’re really pumped for the next game.”

The Penguins and Capitals meet Saturday in Washington for Game 5 of their series, which is tied 2-2 after the Penguins’ 3-1 win Thursday night at PPG Paints Arena.

“We knew we needed to have a good response game here,” center Sidney Crosby told the Post-Gazette. “We did that. We need to carry this momentum into Washington.”

Washington, looking to avenge second-round losses to Pittsburgh in each of the last two seasons, has won five straight Game 5s when the series is tied. Pittsburgh, meanwhile, is 4-1 on the road in these playoffs after going 17-20-4 away from home in the regular season.

In their last two playoffs meetings, the Capitals trailed the Penguins 3-1 before falling in six games in 2015-16 and seven games last season.

“One game at a time. Now this game isn’t going to shake us at all,” Capitals goalie Braden Holtby told NHL.com after Thursday’s loss. “Our biggest asset has been bouncing back, either after a win or a loss. Just focus on playing our game, and that’s what we’re going to do. I don’t think anyone in here believes any different.”

Bouncing back will require Washington to get its top line going. With Tom Wilson suspended for Games 4-6 Cheap Tremaine Edmunds Jersey , coach Barry Trotz moved Devante Smith-Pelly up with Alex Ovechkin and Evgeny Kuznetsov. They managed just five shots on goal Thursday, none by Ovechkin.

“That whole line has to be better,” Trotz told the Washington Post on Friday. “I think that whole line has to be better for us. They’re going to need to be productive for us.”

Trotz could make a change to the top line for Saturday’s game. Forward Andre Burakovsky, who has been out with an upper-body injury since the Columbus series, skated Friday but is unlikely to return Saturday. Vrana played with Ovechkin and Kuznetsov early in the season.

Pittsburgh evened the series Thursday after losing two in a row as Jake Guentzel scored twice, Crosby had two assists and Matt Murray made 20 saves.

Evgeny Malkin scored the tiebreaker in the second period on a goal that survived a replay review and a challenge for goaltender interference.

Guentzel leads the NHL with 10 goals and 21 points in the playoffs.

“Just kind of feel like the bounces are going in right now,” Guentzel told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. “You’re just getting lucky on some plays in front of the net. The puck’s finding me. Just have to try and be around it. Hopefully, they keep coming. It’s definitely a good feeling.”

The Capitals managed just three shots on goal in the third period.

“I think we cut down their odd-man rushes there last game, and that’s going to be a big key in this series,” Pittsburgh’s Patric Hornqvist told the Post Gazette. “They have a lot of firepower up front and we just have to make sure they can’t get those quality chances.”

Penguins forward Carl Hagelin returned for Game 4 after missing three games with an upper-body injury.
With a few shorts blasts of a horn, the intricate steel structure came to life. Slowly, the eight mammoth pods above Mercedes-Benz Stadium began to slide along railroad-like tracks DJ Moore Jersey , revealing the towering downtown skyline off to the east, the glimmering gold dome of the state capitol to the south, and a brilliant blue sky sprinkled with puffy, white clouds overhead.

Eight minutes later, it was fully open.

Nearly a year after the ballyhooed opening of the $1.5 billion stadium, the retractable roof finally is open for business.

”We never had any doubt that this was going to work,” said Mike Egan, who oversaw construction of the stadium. ”But to see it open – now I don’t have to show up at cocktails and have people ask me about the roof anymore. That’s what I’m most excited about.”

A process that took far longer than expected – and produced plenty of ridicule about whether the complex, camera lens-like design would ever work – finally paid off Wednesday when stadium officials showed off the finished product.

The roof opened quicker than the projected 12 minutes in its original design, and only needed about seven minutes to close. Stadium officials also insisted that leaking issues, which embarrassingly turned up during last season’s college football national championship game, had been corrected.

The massive project Byron Jones Jersey , which broke ground in May 2014, is officially completed.

That means this season’s Super Bowl could be held with the roof open if the NFL deems the weather outside to be acceptable.

”It’s working just exactly the way it’s supposed to,” Egan said. ”We can’t wait until the fans are in here. They’re going to be blown away.”

The first demonstration of the fully functioning roof for the general public is set for Sunday, when the NFL’s Atlanta Falcons will hold a training camp practice at the stadium. Some 50,000 fans are expected.

Egan said he never had any doubts about the roof working, but additional modifications were needed after the stadium opened last August. That meant the roof has been closed for all but three events – last season’s Falcons opener and two games for Major League Soccer’s Atlanta United, who already have set numerous attendance records in their new home .

In essence, Egan said, more flexibility had to be built into the eight pods, each weighing roughly 500 tons, to ensure they didn’t burn out the motors that power the process. He said the modifications added slightly to the already costly price tag, but would be paid for entirely by Falcons and United owner Arthur Blank Cheap Christian Kirk Jersey , not by the taxpayers.

To mark the roof’s belated completion, several dozen media members were taken to the top of the stadium – 300 feet above the field – for a first-hand look at the unique structure.

The massive pods were remarkably quiet as they slid along a pair of tracks in perfect synchronization. Other than a warning horn that wailed at the beginning of the movements, the only other real sound atop the roof was a comforting breeze on a day when the temperature climbed near 90 degrees.

The views of the city were spectacular from up above, but this wasn’t a perspective that fans will have on game day.

The media tour required a grueling hike to the top of the upper deck, two more climbs up a pair of metal staircases used by employees only, broken up a harrowing walk along a catwalk that would challenge anyone with a fear of heights.

At the end, there a steep, ladder-like staircase to navigate, akin to what one might find on a naval ship, to get through a small portal that opened up to the sprawling roof.

After plans were announced to build a new retractable-roof stadium to replace the Georgia Dome , which was only 25 years old, Mercedes-Benz Stadium was awarded three major events in its first three years.

This past January Minkah Fitzpatrick Jersey , Alabama defeated Georgia in an overtime thriller to win college football’s national championship . The upcoming NFL season will conclude in Atlanta with the city’s third Super Bowl. Finally, in 2020, the stadium will host the Final Four of men’s college basketball.

In 2026, Mercedes-Benz Stadium is likely to be one of the prime venues for the world’s biggest sporting event, soccer’s World Cup . The winning bid submitted by the United States, Mexico and Canada included a provisional schedule with six games being played in Atlanta, including a semifinal.

Now, the stadium also has a roof that opens.

”This architectural icon that is coming online as of today, it’s only going to take our fan experience to the next level,” said Steve Cannon, chief executive officer of Blank’s AMB Group. ”We’re really excited about what the future holds for Mercedes-Benz Stadium and all the big events we have planned over the coming months and the coming years.”



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