New York Rangers at Pittsburgh Penguins Pick-Odds-Prediction - 5/4/14
New York Rangers (45-31-6) at Pittsburgh Penguins (51-24-7)
NHL Hockey: Sunday, May 4, 2014 at 7:30 pm (Consol Energy Centre)
The Line: Pittsburgh Penguins -160 / New York Rangers +140 --- Over/Under: 5 See the Latest Odds
TV: NBC, TSN, RDS
The Pittsburgh Penguins look to even their series with the New York Rangers at the Consol Energy Center on Sunday.
The Rangers sneaked by Pittsburgh 3-2 in overtime Friday night to capture the opening game and home ice advantage. Most experts thought the Rangers grueling seven game series with Philadelphia would leave them with tired legs against the well rested Penguins but that notion was quickly dispproved when the New Yorkers scored twice in the opening frame for a 2-0 advantage that quieted the crowd at the Consol Energy Center. The Pens had a perceived edge in firepower that was thought to be too much for the defensive minded Rangers and Henrik Lundqvist to contend with but that notion was dispelled as well.
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Derick Brassard lifted New York to the stunning win with his goal at the 3:06 mark of the extra session that at first was not ruled a goal until a review proved the puck did in fact reach the net under the crossbar. Benoit Pouliot and Brad Richards lit the lamp in the first while Lundqvist held the dangerous Pens attack off with a 34 stop effort. Pittsburgh finally got their attack going in the second with tallies from Lee Stempniak and James Neal while Marc-Andre Fleury recorded 24 saves in defeat.
I think the Penguins might have been a tad rusty in the opener but much of what happened has to be credited to New York who was playing in their third game in four days after back to back contests with Philadelphia. Expect the Rangers to try and slow the explosive Penguins down in game two while depending on Lundqvist to clean up anything that gets through. For the Penguins they need to get a lead and force New York to play catch up while hoping star Sydney Crosby and crew do what they do best. My lean right now is for the Penguins to get game two but I'll look at it and post a pick well before faceoff...