Igor Shesterkin EDGE

Igor Shesterkin is making an early case for the Conn Smythe Trophy during a 7-0 start to the Stanley Cup Playoffs, with his individual prowess overriding some of the New York Rangers’ advanced metrics.

The 28-year-old goalie has achieved the success he has despite facing the most high-danger shots on goal (63), per NHL EDGE stats, in the League this postseason. Only Jeremy Swayman of the Boston Bruins has more high-danger saves (53 in eight games) in the playoffs so far than Shesterkin (52 in seven games), adding to the narrative that the Rangers goalie could be considered the most valuable player to his team.

The Rangers’ 5-on-5 shot attempts percentage (45.7) is only ahead of the Edmonton Oilers (43.8) among the remaining eight playoff teams, and they are allowing the most shots on goal per game (32.9) among those teams this postseason.

But Shesterkin is still tied with former teammate Alexandar Georgiev of the Colorado Avalanche for the NHL’s best playoff goal differential (plus-11; goals scored by a goalie’s team while that goalie is on the ice, excluding any goals scored while the team has pulled its goalie for an extra attacker) and has allowed three goals or fewer in each of his seven playoff games.

In addition to Shesterkin, special teams have played a huge part in New York’s perfect playoff record. The Rangers’ penalty kill has held the Carolina Hurricanes to 0-for-15 in three games during the second round; New York has the third-highest offensive zone time percentage on the penalty kill this postseason and leads the NHL with three shorthanded goals.

The Rangers’ power play was held off the board in Game 3 but is still 4-for-13 (30.8 percent) in the series against the Hurricanes and ranks third in the NHL (34.5 percent) over the entire postseason. New York ranks fourth in offensive zone time percentage (62.3) with the man advantage, slightly behind Carolina (62.5), but has been much more opportunistic in this series.

Game 4 will be at PNC Arena on Saturday (7 p.m. ET; MAX, truTV, TNT, SN, TVAS, CBC).

In terms of high-danger goals, only the Avalanche have scored more (17) than the Rangers (15) this postseason. Center Vincent Trocheck, who scored the double-overtime goal in the Rangers’ Game 2 win against the Hurricanes, ranks second in the NHL in high-danger goals (five) behind Oilers wing Zach Hyman (seven).

Only four teams in NHL history have rallied from down 3-0 to win a best-of-7 series, but the Hurricanes do lead the League in shot attempts percentage (58.6) this postseason. Carolina has outshot New York 43-29 on average in the series, and two of its losses have come in overtime. But, based on Shesterkin’s dominance, the Rangers appear to be on their way to eventually closing out their series, which would be the halfway point on the road to a Stanley Cup championship.