NEW YORK RANGERS vs. PITTSBURGH PENGUINS
Saturday, Apr. 18, 2015, 8:00 p.m. ET
Madison Square Garden – New York, NY
BY: The New York Rangers
- The Rangers play Game 2 of their Eastern Conference First Round series against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Madison Square Garden (8:00 p.m. ET — TV: NBC Network; Radio: ESPN 98.7 FM).
- The Rangers lead the best-of-seven series, one game to none, following a 2-1 victory in Game 1 of the series on Thursday, Apr. 16 at MSG.
- Tonight is the Rangers’ 481st all-time playoff game. The Blueshirts enter the contest with a 227-245-8 all-time playoff record.
RANGERS VS. PENGUINS – 2014-15 REGULAR SEASON IN REVIEW
- The Rangers posted a 3-0-1 record (2-0-0 at home, 1-0-1 on the road) against the Penguins in the regular season in 2014-15.
- Henrik Lundqvist appeared in all four games of the season series, posting a 3-0-1 record, along with a 1.69 GAA and a .950 SV%.
- Twelve different Rangers tallied at least two points in the season series.
- Rick Nash led all skaters with four goals, seven points, and a plus-five rating, and tied for first among all skaters with three assists.
- Derick Brassard and Martin St. Louis each tallied five points (two goals, three assists) in the four contests.
RANGERS VS. PENGUINS – PLAYOFF HISTORY
- The Rangers and Penguins are playing against each other in a playoff series for the second consecutive season, and for the sixth time overall.
- The Rangers have posted a 1-4 playoff series record against Pittsburgh, and defeated the Penguins, four games to three, in the Metropolitan Division Finals last season.
- New York is facing Pittsburgh in the first round of the playoffs for the first time since the Patrick Division Semifinals in 1989.
- Tanner Glass (2012-13 – 2013-14) and Dominic Moore (2006-07) both played for the Penguins.
- Moore and Craig Adams both played college hockey at Harvard.
- Derek Stepan and Sidney Crosby both attended Shattuck-St. Mary’s in Minnesota.
- Kevin Klein and Patric Hornqvist were teammates with Nashville for parts of six seasons (2008-09 – 2013-14).
- Klein was teammates with Nick Spaling for parts of five seasons (2009-10 – 2013-14).
INDIVIDUAL CAREER STATISTICS VS. PENGUINS (Regular Season)
- Martin St. Louis – 54 GP, 19-33-52 – St. Louis tallied a point in all four regular season games against Pittsburgh in 2014-15 (two goals, three assists) and recorded a point in eight of his last nine regular season games against the Penguins (two goals, nine assists).
- Derick Brassard – 14 GP, 5-11-16 – Brassard registered a point in each of the last eight regular season games he played against Pittsburgh and nine of 10 regular season games against the Penguins since he made his debut with the Rangers against Pittsburgh on Apr. 3, 2013 (five goals, eight assists in the 10 contests).
- Mats Zuccarello – 14 GP, 3-9-12 – Zuccarello notched a point in seven of his last eight regular season games against the Penguins (three goals, six assists).
- The Rangers have posted a 1-0 record when outscoring its opposition on special teams in the playoffs this year.
- New York posted a 17-1-1 record when outscoring its opponent on special teams during the regular season in 2014-15.
- The Rangers were 1-for-5 (8:43) on the power play in Game 1 vs. Pittsburgh
New York has tallied a power play goal in each of its last two games (regular season and playoffs), three of its last four games, and five of its last eight games
- The Rangers were 1-for-1 (2:00) on the penalty kill in Game 1 vs. Pittsburgh
- The Rangers have not allowed a power play goal in 10 of their last 13 regular season and playoff games (28-for-31; 90.3%) and in 13 of their last 17 regular season and playoff games (37-for-41; 90.2%).
- The Blueshirts are 47-for-52 (90.4%) on the penalty kill over the last 20 regular season and playoff games and are 54-for-60 (90.0%) on the penalty kill over the last 23 regular season and playoff contests.
- The Blueshirts have not allowed a power play goal in 23 of the last 31 regular season and playoff games (73-for-82; 89.0%) and they are 135-for-156 (86.5%) on the penalty kill over the last 59 regular season and playoff games.
- The Blueshirts ranked sixth in the NHL on the penalty kill during the regular season (84.3%; 198-for-235)
- New York tied for third in the NHL in shorthanded (nine) during the regular season.
- Over the last two seasons (including playoffs) the Rangers have tallied more SHG (22) than any other NHL team.
- The Rangers have won 17 of their last 26 playoff games at MSG, dating back to Game 7 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals vs. Ottawa on Apr. 26, 2012.
- The Rangers have won eight of the last nine playoff series in which they have had home-ice advantage, dating back to the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in 1994.
- The Blueshirts have also posted a 22-6 playoff series record when they have won Game 1 of a series at home.
- By winning Game 1 vs. Pittsburgh, New York has now earned at least one win at home in 16 consecutive playoff series, dating back to the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals in 2007.
- The Rangers lead all Eastern Conference teams in playoff wins (29) since the start of the 2012 Playoffs.
The Rangers opened the scoring 28 seconds into the contest in Game 1 vs. Pittsburgh. According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the goal was the second-fastest goal the Rangers have scored at the start of a playoff game in franchise history (Ed Hospodar tallied a goal at 0:27 of Game 2 of the Preliminary Round on Apr. 9, 1981 at Los Angeles).
TOP OF THE HEAP
The Rangers posted a 53-22-7 record this season and earned the Presidents’ Trophy as the 2014-15 Regular Season Champions. In the process, the Blueshirts established single-season franchise records in wins (53) and points (113), eclipsing the previous records established in 1993-94 (52 wins and 112 points). The Rangers have now won the Presidents’ Trophy three times in franchise history (1991-92, 1993-94, 2014-15) and have finished the season with the league’s top record four times (1941-42, 1991-92, 1993-94, 2014-15). New York is the second NHL team to have won the Presidents’ Trophy at least three times since it was first awarded in 1985-86 (Detroit – six), and is the only Wales/Eastern Conference team to have won the Presidents’ Trophy three times.
Alain Vigneault enters the contest with 51 career playoff wins, and is tied with Hockey Hall of Famer Roger Neilson for 21st on the NHL’s all-time playoff wins list. Vigneault is one of 17 head coaches in league history who have earned at least 500 career regular season wins and 50 playoff wins.
Henrik Lundqvist has won six of his last seven regular season and playoff appearances, posting a 1.85 GAA and a .937 SV% over the span. In his last seven playoff appearances at MSG, the Rangers’ all-time wins and shutouts leader has posted a 5-2 record, along with a 1.56 GAA, a .942 SV%, and 1 SO. Lundqvist ranks third among active goalies in career playoff wins with 44.
Entering tonight’s contest, Lundqvist has appeared in 93 playoff games with the Rangers in his career. When he makes his next appearance, Lundqvist will become the Rangers’ all-time leader in playoff appearances (skaters and goalies included).
RANGERS’ ALL-TIME PLAYOFF APPEARANCES:
- T-1. Walt Tkaczuk – 93
- T-1. Henrik Lundqvist – 93
- 3. Dan Girardi – 90
Rick Nash was named the Rangers’ MVP and the winner of the Players’ Player Award for the 2014-15 season. He is the eighth Ranger who has won both awards in the same season since 1958-59. Nash, who established career-highs in goals, plus/minus rating, and even strength goals this season, led the NHL in even strength goals (32), ranked second in goals per game (0.53), games with a goal (35), and shots on goal (304), tied for second in shorthanded goals (four) and shorthanded points (five), ranked third in goals (42), tied for third in game-winning goals (eight), and ranked sixth in plus/minus rating (plus-29) and takeaways (74). Nash was the only player who ranked sixth or higher in the NHL in all of those categories.
Nash has registered a point in all five regular season and playoff games he has played against the Penguins in 2014-15, tallying eight points (four goals, four assists) in those contests.
DAN’S THE MAN
Dan Girardi skated in all 82 games of a season for the fifth time in his NHL career in 2014-15. He is now tied with Brian Leetch for the most seasons in which a Ranger has played all 82 games since the NHL adopted an 82-game schedule in 1995-96. Girardi leads all NHL players in games played (regular season and playoffs) since he made his NHL debut on Jan. 27, 2007 (741).
Derick Brassard has registered at least one point in all five of the Rangers’ regular season and playoff contests against Pittsburgh this season (three goals, three assists). Since he made his debut with the Rangers in a game against the Penguins on Apr. 3, 2013, Brassard has tallied 19 points (10 goals, nine assists) in 18 regular season and playoff games against Pittsburgh. He ranks sixth among NHL centers – and leads the Rangers – in points (25) since the start of the 2013 Playoffs.
Ryan McDonagh has tallied 18 points (five goals, 13 assists) in his last 16 playoff games, dating back to Game 4 of the Rangers’ second round series against Pittsburgh in 2014. The Rangers captain has recorded nine points (two goals, seven assists) in his last nine regular season and playoff games in 2014-15.
INJURIES (1 Man-Game Lost to Injury):
- Apr. 12 – Reassigned Ryan Bourque to Hartford (AHL)
THIS DAY IN RANGERS HISTORY
- Apr. 17, 1994 – The Rangers won Game 1 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals, 6-0, against the New York Islanders at MSG. Mark Messier and Sergei Zubov each tallied one goal and two assists, and Mike Richter made 21 saves to record the shutout.
- Apr. 17, 2007 – Michael Nylander recorded a hat trick and Henrik Lundqvist made 21 saves to earn his first career NHL playoff shutout as the Rangers defeated the Atlanta Thrashers, 7-0, in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Quarterfinals at MSG.
- Apr. 18, 1995 – Brian Leetch tied a single-game franchise record with five assists, and established single-game franchise records for assists and points by a defenseman in a game (five) against the Pittsburgh Penguins.
- Apr. 18, 1999 – Wayne Gretzky skated in his final NHL game, which took place at Madison Square Garden against Pittsburgh.