Gameday 40: Penguins @ Rangers

Gameday 40: Penguins @ Rangers

NHL

Gameday 40: Penguins @ Rangers

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GAMEDAY_1819_40

Penguins @ Rangers

Madison Square Garden – New York, NY

7:00PM Eastern – NBCSN

The Penguins look to get a jump on 2019 and extend their 6-game winning streak in their first matchup of the year against the Rangers at the Garden. A win tonight would momentarily vault the Penguins into second place in the Metropolitan, an just a point behind Washington for the divisional lead, albeit with the Capitals holding two games in hand.

The Penguins overcame an early 1-0 deficit with 3 unanswered goals before holding off a pesky Wild club on New Year’s Eve in St. Paul. The power play has been absolutely lethal of late, converting on 7 of their last 8 opportunities and moving up to 5th best in the league at 26.6%.

Bryan Rust has been a bit banged up and missed the Minnesota game, but he was on the ice for line rushes with Sid and Bake this morning at MSG.

Murray in the cage.

Guentzel – Crosby – Rust

Simon – Malkin – Hornqvist

Pearson – Brassard – Kessel

Sheahan – Cullen – Aston-Reese

Dumoulin – Letang

Maatta – Riikola

Johnson – Pettersson

Murray

The Rangers have had an up-and-down start to the year but have probably overachieved vs. expectation thus far. They’ve gotten stellar first halves from Chris Kreider (20G + 11A) who has points in 5 straight games with 8 total across the span. Kreider works with Mika Zibanejad, a talented centre who has 9 points in 14 career games against the Penguins. Jesper Fast rounds out the Rangers’ first unit.

The Rangers will have to stay out of the box to avoid Pittsburgh’s surging power play. The PK has been one of the Rangers’ struggles on the year as they’re 24th in the league with a success rate of only 77%.

The Penguins will face a familiar foe between the pipes in Henrik Lundqvist. Hank is 12-9-0 with a .916 SV% and 2.81 GAA this year – the save percentage sticks pretty close to his career average (.919) but the 2.81 GAA is quite a deviation from his career GAA (2.38).

Kreider – Zibanejad – Fast

Namestnikov – Hayes – Zuccarello

Buchnevich – Howden – Nieves

Vesey – Strome – McLeod

Staal – Pionk

DeAngelo – Shattenkirk

Skjei – McQuaid

Lundqvist

Take the Garden.

Image result for destroy garden

Go Pens.

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