PITTSBURGH -- Ryan McDonagh felt earlier this season that if he figured out how to marry being the New York Rangers captain and their top defensemen he'd start to resemble the player who earned each of those titles through his performance last season.
It was a union that took some time to develop and came with some internal struggles for McDonagh, but it's become the perfect marriage for the Rangers, who have a 2-1 lead on the Pittsburgh Penguins in their best-of-7 Eastern Conference First Round series heading into Game 4 Wednesday at Consol Energy Center (7 p.m. ET; NBCSN, SN360, TVA Sports 2, ROOT, MSG).
"He's done so many great things for us and now you see it," Rangers center Derek Stepan said. "He's a big part of what we do as a group."