RANGERS 3, PENGUINS 1
Horn sounds. Game over. Pens fall to the NY Rangers 3-1.0:30:
Geno gets down on one knee for a big shot block in front of the open cage and starts the counterattack back up the ice. Play is whistled dead soon after and Pens use their timeout.1:12:
Pens pull Fleury for the extra attacker...2:21:
Pens back to full strength.2:38:
Rupp released from the box. Pens have 16 seconds left on the PK.4:00:
Kunitz to the box for tripping. The teams will go 4-on-4 for 1:16.4:45:
Rupp collides with Jordan Staal
in the Rangers zone, going knee-to-knee, and the Pens center goes down hard. He's helped off the ice after a few minutes and can't put any weight on his leg. We'll try and get an update. Rupp gets two for kneeing on the play. Pens to PP.8:04: Good news: Park is back on the bench sporting a nasty-looking cut under his eye.8:17:
Marc Staal is out of the box. Pens can't get anything going on that PP.10:19:
Big ruckus occurs after Lundqvist covers up for a whistle and the crowd is going nuts as they're absolutely fired up after the no-goal call. And when the dust settles, Marc Staal is going to the box for roughing! Pens to the PP!11:01:
It looks like the Pens score as Neal rips a wrister top shelf from the bottom of the circle, but the refs rule that there's goalie interference on the play from Kunitz and wave it off. Bad break for the Pens.14:02:
Park just absorbed a high hit from Stu Bickell in the corner of the Rangers zone and goes down the runway to the locker room.16:19:
The Staal line counters with a phenomenal shift where they went to the net hard and tested Lundqvist often. 18:40:
Rangers clear into the Pens zone and Fleury goes to try and play the puck since Gaborik is speeding towards him, but he misplays it. Gaborik's momentum took him behind the net, but he manages to throw a puck to the cage that Michalek swipes away...to a crashing Stepan. He grabs it and stuffs it in the open net. RANGERS 3, PENS 120:00:
Puck drops. Game on. Put your rally caps on Pens fans! #letsdothis
- McDonald is a plus-1 through 5:08 minutes of ice time in his season debut
- Dupuis leads Pittsburgh with 5 shots and had 5 more attempts blocked
- Rangers are 15-0-2 when leading after two periods
- Pens are 3-10-1 when trailing after two. Those 3 wins are tied for 6th in the NHL
Period ends with Rangers holding a 2-1 lead. Pens outshooting New York 24-15 after two.2:10:
Sadly, if Pens fans in attendance at tonight's game want Mickey D's, they'll have to buy it themselves as the Big Mac Attack ended without a goal. Pitt outshooting NYR 23-14 right now.3:27:
Anisimov rings a wrister off the post. Good break for the Pens there.4:18:
It's time for the Big Mac Attack!!! Let's see if the Pens can get Goal No. 2 in the next two minutes and get everyone some free burgers!6:33:
Yikes. Fleury gets a pad on a Rangers blast from the point and the rebound goes to an open Blueshirt on the back door. Luckily, the Pens cover their assignments and clear the puck out of the zone.7:40:
Neal and Kunitz head down the ice on a 2-on-2 opportunity, with Neal tucking a shot around the Rangers defender. Kuni grabs the rebound and whips it at Lundqvist, who gobbles it up with his glove. Good chance for the Pens there.8:13:
Pens really pressing hard on the Rangers now trying to get that tying goal...13:12:
Callahan and Dubinsky are all over the place right now. The Blueshirts captain just sent a pass over to his linemate for the re-direct, but luckily Fleury is there to handle it and cover.15:53:
A tussle erupts behind the Pens net but luckily no penalties are handed out to anyone.16:51:
Rangers get a shorthanded 3-on-1 rush on Niskanen with Callahan carrying it down the side of the ice before sending a perfect pass to linemate Dubinsky, who touches it into the goal. RANGERS 2, PENS 118:17:
Pens get an early PP as Marc Staal is whistled for hi-sticking!18:23:
Martin grabs the puck in the center of the point and pushes it to Geno, whose shot rings off the red painted metal!20:00:
Puck drops to start the second. Game on!
- Rangers are outhitting Penguins 23-10
- The goal was Lovejoy's first of the season
- Pens dominated that period, but don't have much to show for it
First period ends with the teams tied 1-1 on goals from Lovejoy and Richards. Pens have an 11-7 advantage in shots.1:43:
And off that ensuing faceoff, a pass from the corner deflects off Fleury, Orpik and then to the stick of a wide-open Richards, who slams it home. PENS 1, RANGERS 11:50:
The game has opened up a bit, but the Rangers just now got their second shot of the period that Flower covered up for the whistle.6:03:
Monster shift by the Dupuis-Staal-Kennedy line just now. I think the crowd oohed and aahed about four or five separate times the way they swarmed the cage.6:41:
Lovejoy having a heck of a game so far. He just singlehandedly broke up a huge Rangers scoring chance in front of Flower.8:54:
Rangers finally get a puck to the cage on a solid scoring chance courtesy of Stepan, but Fleury turns it aside and the Pens head right back up the ice.11:15:
Pens back to full strength! The Rangers still have yet to record a shot on goal...great D by Pittsburgh so far.13:15:
TK gets called for goalie interference after colliding with Lundqvist. Pens to the PK early.14:17:
Niskanen gets tangled with a Rangers player in the Pens' own zone, allowing Vitale to headman the puck to Adams. Adams carries in the zone, stops, waits...and hits the trailing, wide-open Lovejoy with a pass in the slot. He lines up his shot and slips a wrister under Lundqvist! Rangers coach Tortorella opts to use his timeout. PENS 1, RANGERS 014:57:
Pens attacking the cage hard. They've got four shots to the Rangers' zero through the first five minutes.18:04:
Staal doggedly tracks Derek Stepan, lifts his stick and steals the puck -- sending a pass right to the wheelhouse of Duper! However, his one-timer is grabbed and held onto by Lundqvist.19:02:
Strong first shift for the Pens as they kept the Rangers hemmed in their own zone the whole time. Hopefully they'll build off this.20:00:
It's a hockey night in Pittsburgh! Puck drops. Game on!
Pens scratch MacIntyre, Asham and Bortuzzo. Martin, Park, Dupuis and McDonald are all in the lineup tonight!
The official lines:
Fleury between the pipes. Lundqvist in the cage for New York.
After a long five-day break, it's finally a hockey night in Pittsburgh for the first time since New Year's Eve! The Pens will begin the 2012 calendar year with a huge divisional game against the red-hot New York Rangers, who have won eight of their last nine and sit atop the Eastern Conference with 54 points. It's a crucial game for the standings and should be an exciting one to watch.
The news coming out of CONSOL Energy Center today is that Zbynek Michalek
is a game-time decision after missing this morning's skate. Pascal Dupuis
, Richard Park
and Paul Martin
all participated in line rushes and are all eligible to play tonight. The Pens recalled forward Colin McDonald
from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton this morning, and he could make his season debut tonight. For the rest of the game day news, check out the Pens Report
We'll have the lines and scratches posted around 7 p.m., so make sure to tune in then.
While a long break is great for healing the bumps and bruises that come with an 82-game season, it maybe doesn't bode as well for a fast start. The Pens will need to make sure they get their legs moving quickly against a Rangers squad that's already played twice this week.
I haven't watched the fourth episode of HBO's 24/7 yet, but I did watch the third -- and I enjoyed the song they ended it with. So I'm going to play it for you guys tonight. I thought the title was a bit fitting as well. Hope you like!