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First Round Matchup: Pittsburgh Penguins vs. New York Rangers

Now that we have all of the playoff matchups set, we are going to take a look at them. First up, the Pittsburgh Penguins going up against the New York Rangers.

The Penguins finished second in the Metropolitan Division, securing their place against the third-place Rangers. This will be the 3rd straight year that the Pens and Rangers go head-to-head.

The Penguins hold home-ice advantage for the series.

Broadcast Schedule:
G1 Wed. April 13 NY Rangers @ Pittsburgh, 8 p.m. ET SN
G2 Sat. April 16 NY Rangers @ Pittsburgh, 3 p.m. ET CBC
G3 Tues. April 19 Pittsburgh @ NY Rangers, 7 p.m. ET SN
G4 Thurs. April 21 Pittsburgh @ NY Rangers, 8 p.m. ET SN
G5 Sat. April 23 NY Rangers @ Pittsburgh, TBD TBD
G6
Mon. April 25, Pittsburgh @ NY Rangers, TBD
G7* Wed. April 27 Detroit @ Tampa Bay, TBD TBD

ADVANCED STATS:
Pittsburgh: 5on5CF% – 52.7; 5on5Sv% – .931; 5on5Sh% – 7.54; PDO = 100.6
New York: 5on5CF% – 47.4; 5on5Sv% – .934; 5on5Sh% – 8.95; PDO = 102.4
(via stats.hockeyanalysis.com)

Pittsburgh Penguins

  • 2nd in the Metropolitan Division
  • 3rd in the Eastern Conference
    • 48-26-8

sidney-crosby-nhl-new-york-islanders-pittsburgh-penguins-850x560

The Penguins finished second in the Metropolitan, and third in the Eastern Conference. Their season has been good, and with the firepower they have, it should be. Considering they have been without Evgeni Malkin for a bit, they’ve still been solid. They finished third in the league in GPG (goals per game), with 2.94, and having stars like Crosby, Malkin, and Kessel definitely helps. For GAA (goals against average) they ended up 6th place in the league, letting in 2.43 on average. The Pens powerplay this year has been middle of the pack, ending up 16th, at 18.4%. Their penalty kill however was top-five in the league, ending 5th at 84.4%.

New York Rangers

  • 3rd in the Metropolitan Division
  • 4th in the Eastern Conference
    • 46-27-9

The Rangers finished third in the Metropolitan and 4th in the Eastern Conference. Their season hasn’t been bad either, although a bit of a drop off in the last few months hasn’t helped. The Rangers have been dealing with injuries this year, especially with their captain, Ryan McDonagh. They finished 7th in the league in GPG (goals per game), with 2.84 per. GAA (goals against average) has been kind of a surprise this year, finishing 16th in the league, with 2.62. Considering, Henrik Lundqvist is one of the better goalies in the league, this stat is surprising. The Rangers powerplay has been middle of the pack also, finishing 14th in the league at 18.6%. Their penalty kill however, much worse. It finished 26th in the league, at 78.2%.

Head-to-head

Pittsburgh: 3-1-0

New York: 1-2-1

Leaders:

Pittsburgh:

Goals: Sidney Crosby – 36

Assists: Kris Letang – 51

Plus/Minus: Chris Kunitz – 29

Powerplay Goals: Evgeni Malkin – 11

Goalie Wins: Marc-Andre Fleury – 35

Goalie Save %: Matt Murray – .930

New York:

Goals: Derick Brassard – 27

Assists: Keith Yandle – 42

Plus/Minus: Ryan McDonagh – 26

Powerplay Goals: Derick Brassard – 8

Goalie Wins: Henrik Lundqvist – 35

Goalie Save %: Henrik Lundqvist – .920

Key Injuries

Pittsburgh:

  • Matt Murray – Head, day-to-day
  • Beau Bennett – Undisclosed injury, day-to-day
  • Marc-Andre Fleury – Concussion, day-to-day
  • Bryan Rust – Lower-body, day-to-day
  • Olli Maatta – Lower-body, day-to-day
  • Scott Wilson – Lower-body, IR
  • Evgeni Malkin – Arm, IR
  • Kevin Porter – Ankle surgery, IR

New York:

  • Eric Staal – Upper-body, day-to-day
  • Viktor Stalberg – Lower-body, day-to-day
  • Mats Zuccarello – Lower-body, day-to-day
  • Dan Girardi – Upper-body, day-to-day
  • Ryan McDonagh – Hand, day-to-day

Coleton MacDonald
The Founder of Weliveforhockey.com
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