BOSTON -- There is no consistent seating chart for the Penguins when they are on the road. Visiting locker rooms are configured differently.
At TD Garden on Friday, centers Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin occupied a small section with just two lockers on one side of the Penguins' locker room.
They sat there -- in contrast and yet hurting for the same reason -- after a 1-0 loss to Boston that ended the team's season with a series sweep by the Bruins in the Eastern Conference final.
Neither star player had a point in the series.
Crosby, surrounded by two sets of reporters, quietly answered question after question, his voice low and with little detectable emotion.
"You score two goals [as a team] in four games in a series, and personally to go without any points, it doesn't sit very well," said Crosby, who had never gone four playoff games in a row without a point before this series.
Malkin sat for several minutes with his head down, stunned and not wanting to speak to anyone.
When he did, he assigned himself a lot of blame.
"We scored two goals in four games. It's not enough," Malkin said. "It's my mistake to score zero goals. It's not good for me."
Both Crosby and Malkin have been the NHL scoring champion and league MVP. Crosby is a finalist to win the Hart Trophy as MVP again this season and in all likelihood would have led the league in points during the regular season if he had not missed the final 12 games of the regular season because of surgery for a broken jaw.
The stage was set for one or both of them to help the Penguins salvage at least one win in the series and bring it back to Consol Energy Center for what would have been Game 5 Sunday night.
Previously in games where the Penguins were facing elimination, Crosby had three goals, nine points in 10 games, and Malkin had four goals, 10 points in 10 games.
Crosby finished Game 4 with four shots, plus three that were blocked and one that missed the net.
Malkin had one shot, one that was blocked and one that missed the net.
"If you look back, chances are there," Crosby said. "You try to fight and get through to the net."
Malkin's best game in the series was Game 3, when he had 10 shots, plus seven that were blocked and four more that missed the net, in a 2-1, double-overtime loss.
Still, he said in the series he lacked patience for a better shot, perhaps with more room to get a puck past Boston goaltender Tuukka Rask.
"It's tough," Malkin said. "I don't have confidence. I have zero goals."
Crosby took a few big hits in the series ??? including a blind-side upending by Bruins winger Daniel Paille in the first period Friday ??? but said he came out of the series healthy.
It might not be that way for Malkin, who had trouble with a shoulder off and on for several weeks. There was no indication how severe it might be.
The Penguins' two goals in the four games were scored by Brandon Sutter and Chris Kunitz, and the Penguins were competitive in each game except for a 6-1 loss in Game 2.
Rask had two shutouts, assisted by strong defensive play from his teammates, who cleared rebounds, blocked shots and made it difficult for the Penguins to get set up offensively.
"For whatever reason, we couldn't capitalize," Crosby said. "We had chances, open nets. There weren't times where we were worried, to be honest, where we felt like we were losing momentum.
???There are times where you get three or four shifts where they???re hemming you in and you feel like they???ve got a lot of pressure [but] there wasn???t really any point besides that second game where we felt like [we were worried].
"We felt like we were getting chances pretty consistently, [but prime scoring chances] were few and far between for both teams. They capitalized and we didn't."
Malkin balked at the idea he simply ran into a hot goalie in Rask.
"My job is not to look at how the goalie plays," he said. "It's my job to score goals. It doesn't matter what's going on on the ice.
"I tried. I tried."
For much more on the Penguins, read the Pens Plus blog with Dave Molinari and Shelly Anderson at www.post-gazette.com/plus. Shelly Anderson: firstname.lastname@example.org, 412-263-1721 and Twitter @pgshelly.