The Rangers beat the Penguins 3-1 at home and have all the momentum heading into game seven on Tuesday.
Carl Hagelin and Derick Brassard scored the other goals for New York. Henrik Lundqvist stunned the Penguins, stopping 36 shots on the night, including a breakaway chance by Marcel Goc.
In fact the only thing that denied Lundqvist the shutout was an unfortunate deflection that bounced off his own defensemen and into the net.
Other than that, the Rangers played a fantastic game. They jumped to an early two goal lead and were able to keep it throughout most of the game. Martin St. Louis provided the veteran leadership required to give his team the boost they needed.
Benoit Pouliout and Brad Richards were involved, peppering Marc-Andre Fluery with shots throughout the game. Marc Staal did a wonderful job blocking shots and pressuring the Penguins forwards. Overall, the right team won in this game. The only thing that was missing was a goal from Rick Nash. If he can score a goal or two in Tuesday’s game, I believe the Rangers will win the series.
For the Pittsburgh Penguins, this is another game to forget. Marc-Andre Fluery stopped 26 shots, but let in two very soft goals in my opinion. Falling behind by two early on the road really killed this team.
Head Coach Dan Bylsma called his time-out early, and ripped into his team to try and wake them up. However, it didn’t work. Penguins captain, Sidney Crosby was held to just one shot all game, took a careless penalty and was hacking and slashing the Rangers all game. Evgeni Malkin was also silenced in this game. The only thing Chris Kunitz and Jussi Jokinen did was take needless penalties and frustrate their coach.
Brendan Sutter did score a goal for the Penguins to cut the lead to late in the first period, but the Penguins never tied the game. This is the most frustrated, I’ve seen Sidney Crosby. If the Penguins hope to advance to the next round, Crosby and Malkin need to start getting revenge on the scoreboard instead of starting fights and throwing cheap shots.
They should stick to what got them in this position, which is scoring goals. The only advantage they have now is that their heading home for game seven. The home crowd better be able to give their team a boost because they really need one from somewhere.
The question is, will the Pittsburgh Penguins top line wake up and start scoring? Or will Rick Nash finally score and lift the Rangers to victory? I can’t wait to see which team will be heading to the next round on Tuesday.
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