Post-Game Buzz: Rangers have game changers unlike previous years
The New York Rangers (13-5-3, 29 pts) who are trying to move into elite status in the Eastern Conference, have put together a strong stretch ofÂ wins with three straightÂ victories against Washington, Philadelphia and now Pittsburgh.
What we saw tonight from the Rangers is that they have the game changers in their lineup that can alter a game unlike previous years.
Pittsburgh (14-7-4, 32 pts) jumped out to a 1-0 lead with a late first period goal from James Neal and Pittsburgh came out dominating play in the second period with great offensive zone possession, but the game suddenly turned.
Ryan Callahan got New York on the board at 8:01 of the period and John Mitchell and Brad Richards scored 90 seconds apart in New York’s four-goal second period, and the Rangers held on to beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 4-3 on Tuesday night for their third consecutive win.
Ryan Callahan and Marian Gaborik both had a goal and assist in the period, and Richards added two assists as New York won its seventh straight at home and 10th in 12 games overall. The four goals in the period matched a season high, done three previous times, including twice in three games.
— This game had a lot of passion from the drop of the puck as Steve Avery and Tyler Kennedy got into it 16 seconds into the game.
— It was a disappointment for the Penguins that they couldn’t take advantage of what appeared to be an off game for Henrik Lundqvist. Lundqvist for much of the game was off on his angles, leaning the wrong way and gave up some big rebounds. In fact, both goaltenders did not play well in the game. Marc Andre Fleury (13-4-2) made 26 saves in the loss. Lundqvist earned his 10th win of the season, making 24 saves.
— New York got a big game from Marian Gaborik who now has 8 goals and 15 points in his last 14 games. Gaborik controlled the play at times with his dynamic ability.
— The Rangers went 2 for 6 on the power play and won the Special Teams battle. The Penguins came into the game 18-for-18 in their last four games on the PK.
— Sidney Crosby continued his move in the NHL points race. Crosby had 2 assists for his fourth multi-point game of the season and has 11 points in five games. Crosby’s 11 points in five games is the most in his career to start a season (span of 5 games). Crosby logged 20:36 of ice time, the second straight game he had over 20 minutes.
— Evgeni Malkin had a total of 23 shifts in the game. He was on the ice for 11 of those shifts with Sidney Crosby. Three Shifts at 4-on-4, Five Shifts at 5-on-5 and the two had three shifts together on the power play.
Dan Bylsma continues to use Malkin all over the lineup. A breakdown for Malkin not including power play time or centering his regular line of Sullivan and Neal:
1st Period: 87-71 (4-on-4) | 24-11-71 (5-on-5) | 87-71 (4-on-4)
2nd Period: 87-71 (4-on-4) | 24-11-71 (5-on-5)
3rd Period: 14-87-71 (5-on-5) | 18-87-71 (5-on-5) | 14-87-71 (5-on-5) | 14-87-71 (5-on-5) | 11-87-71 (End of game, extra attacker)
Kris Letang (facial) – Letang will return to Pittsburgh tomorrow for further evaluation. The Penguins at this point are being very cautious. “really precautionary at this point, ” Bylsma said on Letang’s status.
Zbynek Michalek (undisclosed) – Bylsma, as expected, would not go into specifics regarding Michalek’s injury.
Steve MacIntyre (Injured Reserve) The Penguins needed to clear to a roster spot with the callups of Bortuzzo and Picard and the team placed Steve MacIntyre on injured reserve. For a player to be placed on injured reserve he actually has to be injured. MacIntyre who has been skating frequently, has been dealing with “an upper body injury”, at least according to Dan Bylsma…….MacIntyre must have hurt himself hitting a punching bag.
5-1-1: The Rangers record in their last seven games vs the Penguins
6-6-2: The Penguins are 6-6-2 on the road this season and have lost 8 of 14 road games this year.
1-4: The Penguns record in their last five road games
8-8: The Penguins record vs the Eastern Conference
9-2-3: The Penguins record when scoring first. Pittsburgh tonight suffered their second regulation loss when scoring first in a game.
8: The amount of goals Brad Richards has in his last 13 games
8-1-0: Henrik Lundqvist record in the month of November
20: The amount of points Pascal Dupuis has —Â ranking third on the team and 36th in the NHL..
21: Sidney Crosby has 21 multi-point games in his last 35 regular season games, dating back to October 30, 2010.
441: Evgeni Malkin (441 pts) surpassed Paul Coffey (440 pts) on the Penguins all-time points list, netting his 9th goal of the season. Malkin trails Marty Straka (442 pts) by one point for 9th on the Penguins all-time list.
20: Combined points Sidney Crosby (11pts) and Evgeni Malkin (9pts) have since Crosby’s return on Nov 21.
40-17: The Rangers advantage over Pittsburgh in the faceoff circle.
3rd: James Neal goes into Wednesday’s action as the 3rd leading goal scorer in the NHL with 14 goals. Neal collected his 14th of the season (7th power play goal) vs the Rangers.
2nd: Marc Andre Fleury suffered just his 2nd regulation loss in his last 14 games.
PIT 17:56 James Neal (14) (Power Play)
Assists: Sidney Crosby, Paul Martin (PIT 1-0)
NYR 8:01 Ryan Callahan (9) (Power Play)
Assists: Marian Gaborik, Brad Richards (1-1)
NYR 14:09 John Mitchell (1)
Assists: Carl Hagelin, Brian Boyle (NYR 2-1)
NYR 15:39 Brad Richards (9)
Assists: Ruslan Fedotenko, Ryan Callahan (NYR 3-1)
NYR 18:26 Marian Gaborik (11) (Power Play)
Assists: Michael Del Zotto, Brad Richards (NYR 4-1)
PIT 19:53 Evgeni Malkin (9)
Assists: James Neal, Steve Sullivan (NYR 4-2)
PIT 3:39 Pascal Dupuis (7)
Assists: Sidney Crosby, Deryk Engelland (NYR 4-3)