May 4, 2014; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Pittsburgh Penguins left wing Chris Kunitz (14) watches as a shot by defenseman Kris Letang (not pictured) gets past New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) for a goal during the second period in game two of the second round of the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs at the CONSOL Energy Center. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

New York Rangers vs Pittsburgh Penguins: Game 3 Preview


Tonight the New York Rangers are back at Madison Square Garden for game three of the second round. The Pittsburgh Penguins tied the series last night, in game two, after they worked the Rangers to exhaustion. Tonight’s puck drop is scheduled for 7:30pm ET.

Henrik Lundqvist will be back in net for the Rangers tonight. This post season has been relatively kind to “The King”. In nine games he has a 5-4 record with a 2.07 goals against average and a .926 save percentage from 242 shots against him. Despite their loss last night, the Rangers, as a whole, are playing solid hockey. The exception to that is the power play. It is abysmal to be honest. The whole thing is such a mess it’s impossible to pin point one specific thing to change. One thing that everyone should agree on is that Brad Richards needs to be replaced on the point. On the other side of things, Richards leads the team with three goals for seven points in nine games. Benoit Pouliot is right behind him with three goals for six points. The majority of the Rangers are skating on the plus side of the goal differential. Ryan McDonagh is struggling as a -3 with no offensive output. He is a shell of himself as a player and sadly, that doesn’t help the team. Derek Dorsett and Martin St. Louis are -1 while Derick Brassard is a neutral zero. Marc Staal has been the top defenseman for the Rangers with a +6 rating and three points in his nine games.

The Penguins continue to use Marc-Andre Fleury in their net, there is no backup even listed. Sidney Crosby’s notably underwhelming performance is evident in his six assists and his -5 rating. Other top names like Chris Kunitz, two goals for six points in eight games and a -5 rating, show that the Penguins are relying on depth to win games. Kunitz also leads the team with 12 penalties in minutes. Kris Letang has two goals for four points in eight games with 10 penalties in minutes, that’s not good for him but given his recent health struggles, he has nowhere to go but up. Paul Martin leads the Penguins with a +9 goal differential, he also has eight points in eight games. Brandon Sutter has three goals for five points and a +7 differential in his eight games. There has been some concern regarding young defenseman Olli Maatta. In eight games he has only two assists and he is -1; well below his regular season production numbers. Neither team has a laundry list of injuries. Chris Kreider continues to skate in a non-contact jersey after breaking his hand and Brooks Orpik remains out with an undisclosed injury.

 

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Tags: Henrik Lundqvist Marc Staal New York Rangers