Game 35: Penguins vs. Rangers

December 18, 2013, by


After an ugly win against Calgary, where the Rangers made some baby steps in the right direction, the Metropolitan Division leading Pittsburgh Penguins are in town. The Pens are beaten up, with half of their defense (Orpik, Martin, Scuderi) and two key scorers (Malkin, Neal) either injured or suspended. If you’re going to catch Pittsburgh at any point, now is the time to catch them.

Dan Bylsma has the Penguins running an aggressive 2-1-2 forecheck in the offensive zone and encourages puck pursuit in most situations.  In the DZ, Pittsburgh uses a low zone collapse, taking out shooting lanes and protecting the slot. The Pens are ranked 4th in the league in blocked shots and still average over 3 goals a game. On special teams, they run a 1-3-1/umbrella power play which is ranked first in the league, clicking at an incredible 26% rate. They employ a diamond force penalty kill, which they also execute real well as they are 2nd in the NHL just behind Vancouver.

Rangers Lineup (unconfirmed):

Chris Kreider-Derek Stepan-Rick Nash
Brad Richards-Derick Brassard-Mats Zuccarello
Benoit Pouliot-Brian Boyle-Arron Asham
Carl Hagelin-Dominic Moore-Derek Dorsett

Ryan McDonagh-Anton Stralman
Michael Del Zotto-Dan Girardi
John Moore-Justin Falk

Henrik Lundqvist gets the start.

Scratches: Marc Staal (concussion), Taylor Pyatt, Dylan McIlrath (healthy)

Game time is 8pm tonight on NBCSN. Don’t forget to check out our Rangers Tickets link for deals to attend games.

Categories : Game Thread


  1. @Centerman21 says:

    The Pens couldn’t keep up with the Rangers speed when they played for the first time this season. The Rangers won 5-1. I have to assume the Pens will want payback. No matter how many injuries they have. The Rangers will have to play 100% to have a chance at a win tonight. Even on home ice.

  2. Rangers Fan in Boston says:

    What is it about Pierre McGuire that makes me want to punch him in the face?

  3. Walt says:

    Wilks-Barre Pens 3, Rangers 1, off goes the tv, good night folks! What crap this game is.

    • Chris F says:

      Gotta stick with the boys, Walt! You’re missing a great game!

      • Walt says:

        Went to bed, missed out something, but I can’t take this team any more. Four of the six d-men for the Pens are from the farm team, Malkin, Neal, Latang all out. We couldn’t beat an AHL roster, at home, enough with the make up of this team. Time to move on.

  4. joe719 says:

    And once again, the Defense lets the team down. Even before McDonagh breaks his stick, Girardi,unforced, just gives the puck away. And then MDZ is exposed again. It’s like the nightmare that you never wake up from.

    • flatbush says:

      MacD and Girardi were legit #1-2 D pair under last year system why the fall off? All I can see is MacD running all over the place. Perfect example last night, he gets caught which leads to the breakaway and penalty. Later he is behind the net, breaks his stick and chases his guy all the way to the point without a stick leaving a low 2v1 because Step is already in that high area. Unlike the ranger fwds Pengs execute and the King has little chance. DZ and Stral, lets not kid ourselves, are #6 guys if that. Dz backs in and in and in, doesn’t play the guys chest and fishes for the puck. In the mean time his partner #6 is a spectator. That was a 2v1 in our favor but the Weak side D never came across and DZ gave ice almost to the paint while the opposition rode the trolley tracks to the weak side unmolested. Great shot while we watched and gave away territory. Just to move to the Fwds, Is Nash concussed?

  5. Walt says:

    By the way Kevin, and Dave, go back to the Sather postings, and see the drafting by Sather, what no response?????

    • Chris F says:

      Challenge accepted (though I know not directed at me). Hope you don’t mind me taking a stab at this on Sather’s behalf, Kevin and Dave.

      Walt, see response to your draft comment in earlier post.

  6. Walt says:

    By the way Kevin, and Dave, go back to the Sather postings, and see the drafting by Sather, what no response?????

    • joe719 says:

      Walt, catch me up. I haven’t been here for a few days. What’s this about Sather?

      • Walt says:


        It’s about time that they send the old fart to the pastures to retire. People are saying he has done a great job, good job whatever, I say he is useless, and the game has passed him by. Doland has his head in the sand, won’t move on Sather, and that is killing this team. I went back to the 97 draft, showing who was drafted #1 by us, and what wonderful players we passed on. Just read it, they will defend, I’ll discet his record. The game has passed him by, and he should go.

  7. joe719 says:

    Is Rick Nash ever gonna’ shoot the puck again? Every time he comes into the zone, hes always twisting or turning, totally nullifying any chance for a shot. He always seems to have his back to the net lately.

  8. joe719 says:

    Finally Moore does something!!!!!

  9. Chris F says:

    What a friggin’ comeback! Take your pessimism and shove it, Walt! 😉

  10. Bloomer says:

    Come back Walt..turn your TV on….lol

    • Walt says:

      I slept well my friend!! Didn’t miss much, my stomach feels great today, no ulcers.