Pittsburgh at NY Rangers
When: 7:00 PM
ET, Sunday, April 9, 2017
Where: Madison Square Garden, New York, New York
What had loomed as one of the most intriguing regular-season finales lost any luster for both teams when the Pittsburgh Penguins visit the New York Rangers on Sunday night. The Penguins already have secured second place in the Metropolitan while division rival New York is locked into the first wild card in the Eastern Conference.
Pittsburgh eliminated the Rangers in five games en route to its run to the Stanley Cup a year ago and has won three of four meetings against New York this season, including both visits to Madison Square Garden. The Penguins had a four-game winning streak halted in a 5-3 loss at Toronto on Saturday, surrendering three goals in the final 5 1/2 minutes. New York held a bunch of regulars out of its last two games and needed a last-minute goal by Mika Zibanejad in Saturday's 3-1 setback in Ottawa to avoid a second consecutive shutout. Backup netminder Antti Raanta gets the call against Pittsburgh, which has recorded a pair of five-goal victories in its three-game winning streak against the Rangers.
TV: 7 p.m. ET, ROOT (Pittsburgh), MSG (New York)
ABOUT THE PENGUINS (50-19-11): Captain Sidney Crosby, who netted his league-high 44th goal Saturday, was held off the scoresheet and registered a minus-4 in the first matchup with the Rangers this season, but rebounded with four goals and three assists in the next three meetings. Rookie Jake Guentzel has seven points during a five-game goal-scoring streak, which started with a tally in a 4-3 win at Madison Square Garden on March 31. Guentzel has amassed nine goals and nine assists in his last 14 games.
ABOUT THE RANGERS (47-28-6): While New York admittedly has nothing to play for, it has won only three times in the past 12 games (3-5-4) and coach Alain Vigneault told the media it's a "possibility" that more of his regulars will be in the lineup Sunday. Defenseman Dan Girardi acknowledged it's hard for the players to get up for meaningless games but isn't worried about a carry-over effect. "Hopefully we can just have a good, solid team effort tomorrow and then get on our horse and get going,” Girardi said.
1. A victory Sunday will give Pittsburgh 20 road wins in 10 consecutive seasons.
2. Raanta is 1-1-0 with a 3.97 goals-against average in four appearances versus the Penguins.
3. Pittsburgh is 5-for-10 on the power play over the past four games.
PREDICTION: Rangers 3, Penguins 2
Stats and Records