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Notebook: Pens Get Rangers Next

by Joe Sager / Pittsburgh Penguins

The Penguins learned their second-round playoff foe Tuesday night.

By virtue of the Flyers' 3-2 overtime win in Washington, the Penguins will meet the New York Rangers..

Still, the Penguins aren’t worried about what team they will face or how high in the stands that squad finished.

“We’re worried about us. Whoever you play now, the ranking doesn’t matter. You’re going to play a tough team no matter who you play,” Penguins captain Sidney Crosby said. “Any team who gets in the playoffs is a good team. Any team that gets past the first round, they do everything well. Every team is so close there is not much difference between the teams who get through. They are going to have depth and goaltending and they are going to play well defensively. It doesn’t really matter.

“For us, we’re always worried about what we have to do as opposed to who we’re playing, so I don’t think that changes anything.”

Penguins defenseman Ryan Whitney agrees: “We don’t really care who we play. I think we’ve had good games with New York.”

WAITING GAME IS GOOD

The Penguins have not minded their week-long layoff from playoff games after sweeping the Senators last week.

“It’s a lot nicer to be done and just be here waiting. I think the rest is important, especially in the playoffs,” Crosby said. “To see the way teams are battling, I think it’s also a reminder for us when we’re here practicing every day of knowing we can’t take a day off. We have to make sure we’re keeping up with what we do in practices here.”

ROBERTS REMAINS DAY-TO-DAY

Gary Roberts did not play in Games 3 or 4 against the Senators due to a groin strain. He has been recovering this week.

Penguins coach Michel Therrien declared the 19-year NHL vet, who had two goals in Game 1 against Ottawa, as “day-to-day.”

PASCAL THE RASCAL

Pascal Dupuis may not get the attention many of the Penguins do, but that doesn’t mean he’s undervalued. His position on the top line with Marian Hossa and Crosby certainly shows that.

“This is a guy, who right away when he got here, felt very comfortable with the way we play. He’s been learning the system and it’s almost similar to what he knew when he played in Minnesota,” Therrien said. “There are players who will comfortable with different teams and there are players who won’t feel comfortable. There’s no doubt that this is a guy, as soon as he walked in, that felt really comfortable with his teammates and with the way we play. He’s doing a good job right now on Crosby’s line and has an important role killing penalties. You could see at the end of the year, our penalty killing is better as well as in the playoffs. We’re pleased with the way he is playing right now.”

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