Here are your pregame notes, courtesy of the Rangers:
NEW YORK RANGERS vs. PITTSBURGH PENGUINS
Sunday, Feb. 13, 3:00 p.m.
Madison Square Garden • New York, NY
Rangers: 29-24-4 (62 pts)
Penguins: 35-18-4 (74 pts)
* All information through NHL games on Feb. 11
The Rangers will face off against the Pittsburgh Penguins today at Madison Square Garden (3 p.m.), in an Atlantic Division matchup. The Blueshirts currently rank third in the Atlantic Division standings, and seventh in the Eastern Conference, with a record of 29-24-4 (62 pts). The Rangers enter today’s contest having been defeated by the Atlanta Thrashers, 3-2, on Friday at Philips Arena. Fifteen of the Blueshirts’ last 19 games have been decided by one goal, including seven of their last eight home games. The Penguins enter the contest with a 35-18-4 (74 pts) record to rank fourth in the Eastern Conference, and have won nine of their last 13 games (9-4-0). Following today’s contest, the Rangers will face off against the Los Angeles Kings on Thursday at Madison Square Garden (7 p.m.), in the first game of a back-to-back set.
* TV: MSG Network
2:30 p.m. – Rangers Pre-Game Show with Al Trautwig
3 p.m. – Rangers vs. Penguins
Broadcasters: Sam Rosen (Play-By-Play), Joe Micheletti (Analyst), John Giannone (In-Game Reporter)
* Radio: 1050 ESPN Radio and newyorkrangers.com
2:30 p.m. – Rangers Pre-Game Show
3 p.m. – Rangers vs. Penguins
Broadcasters: Kenny Albert (Play-By-Play), Dave Maloney (Analyst)
RANGERS vs. PENGUINS:
* All-Time: 113-97-23-8 overall (63-46-9-3 at home, 50-51-14-5 on the road)
* 2010-11: Today is the fifth of six meetings this season, and the third and final meeting at Madison Square Garden. New York is 2-1-1 thus far, following a 4-3 shootout loss at MSG on Feb. 1.
* Last Season: The Rangers were 1-4-1 against the Penguins in 2009-10, including a 0-2-1 mark at home. Four of their six meetings were decided by two goals or less, including two that required overtime.
* The Rangers rank 25th with a 12-12-3 (27 pts) record at home; the Penguins rank 10th with a 15-8-3 (33 pts) mark on the road
* New York is 8-6-1 vs. the Atlantic Division; Pittsburgh is 8-6-2 against the Atlantic Division
* Henrik Lundqvist is 18-13-5 with a 2.40 goals against average and two shutouts in 36 career regular season games vs. the Penguins; Martin Biron is 13-15-3-2 with a 2.98 goals against average and two shutouts in 33 career regular season contests vs. Pittsburgh
* Marian Gaborik has tallied seven goals and eight assists for 15 points in 16 career regular season contests vs. the Penguins; Wojtek Wolski has recorded four goals and four assists for eight points in six career regular season games vs. Pittsburgh
* New York lists two former Penguins on their roster: Erik Christensen (2005-06 – 2007-08); Ruslan Fedotenko (2008-09 – 2009-10)
* Pittsburgh lists one former Ranger on their roster: Pascal Dupuis (2006-07)
The Blueshirts have posted a plus-seven rating on special teams (PPG+SHG minus PPGA+SHGA) this season, which ranks fifth in the league.
* Power Play: The Rangers tallied one goal in three power play opportunities (2:33) on Friday at Atlanta. New York ranks 24th overall (32-205, 15.6%) and 19th at home (18-104, 17.3%). The Rangers are 2-9 (7:45) in five-on-three situations (last – 2/7 at DET), and 0-2 (2:23) when four-on-three (last – 12/3 vs. NYI). Shorthanded goals allowed (4): 11/20 at MIN (Cullen); 12/5 vs. OTT (Kelly); 1/2 at FLA (Weiss); 1/16 vs. PHI (Richards).
* Penalty Killing: The Blueshirts surrendered one goal to the Thrashers in five shorthanded situations (8:00) on Friday at Atlanta, and have allowed only three power play goals against in the last 15 games (40-43, 93.0% over the span). New York ranks seventh overall (159-189, 84.1%) and eighth at home (68-79, 86.1%). The Rangers are 7-9 (6:45) in three-on-five situations (last – 2/3 vs. NJD), and 4-6 (2:41) when three-on-four (last – 11/15 at PIT). Shorthanded goals for (9): 10/9 at BUF (Dubinsky); 11/5 at NJD (Dubinsky); 11/15 at PIT (Staal); 11/24 at TBL (Boyle); 11/26 at FLA (Prust); 12/5 vs. OTT (Prust); 12/12 vs. WSH (Staal); 12/16 vs. PHX (Prust); 1/7 at DAL (Fedotenko).
* Four-on-Four: New York did not tally/yield a goal in two, four-on-four situations (3:35) on Friday at Atlanta, and are now plus-three in 45, four-on-four situations (90:57). Four-on-four goals for (5): 10/18 vs. COL (Frolov); 11/11 vs. BUF (Anisimov); 11/15 at PIT (Callahan); 12/12 vs. WSH (Callahan); 1/5 vs. CAR (Zuccarello). Four-on-four goals allowed (2): 10/15 vs. TOR (Kessel); 1/1 at TBL (Thompson).
Rangers’ defenseman Marc Staal has faced off against his younger brother, Pittsburgh forward Jordan Staal, 21 times in his career, amassing a 9-10-2 record with six points (two goals, four assists) and 20 penalty minutes. Jordan has registered a 12-4-5 mark behind six goals and six assists, along with 24 penalty minutes in those 21 games.
40 IN FOUR
Brandon Dubinsky registered his 40th point of the season with a goal at Detroit on Monday, marking the fourth consecutive season he has reached the 40-point plateau to begin his career. Dubinsky is currently two goals, six assists and four points shy of his career-highs in goals (20, 2009-10), assists (28, 2008-09) and points (44, 2009-10).
The Rangers completed their 14th of 18 back-to-back sets on Jan. 25 vs. Florida. New York is 8-5-1 (2-1-0 at home, 6-4-1 on the road) in the first game of back-to-backs. The Blueshirts are 10-4-0 (4-2-0 at home, 6-2-0 on the road) in the second game this season, having out-scored their opponent, 39-24, in those games. Over the last two seasons, New York is 19-6-2 in the back-end of back-to-back sets, including an 8-3-1 mark at MSG and 11-3-1 on the road over the span. The Rangers’ next back-to-back set is Feb. 17 vs. Los Angeles and Feb. 18 at New Jersey.
New York has posted a record of 7-16-3 when trailing after the second period. The Rangers’ seven wins, 17 points and .269 winning percentage rank first in the NHL. The Blueshirts have out-shot their opponent, 98-38, in the third period of their last eight games.
COMPARED TO LAST SEASON…
The Rangers have registered four more wins and five more points compared to last season through 57 games (25-25-7, 55 points in 2009-10), having tallied 13 more goals (157 this season, 144 last season) while allowing 15 fewer goals against (141 this season, 156 last season). New York has also shown a four-goal improvement while shorthanded compared to 2009-10 (nine this season, five last season).
AMONG THE LEAGUE LEADERS
The Rangers lead the league in shorthanded goals (nine) and hits (1,615), are tied for first in road wins (17), rank seventh in penalty killing (84.1%), eighth in goals against (141) and home penalty killing (86.1%), fifth in blocked shots (884), and rank eighth with a plus-16 goal differential.
The Blueshirts rank 11th in the league with a .536 winning percentage in one-goal games, posting a record of 15-9-4 in those contests. Their 28 one-goal games rank fourth in the NHL, and 15 wins are tied for fifth in the league. Fifteen of the Rangers’ last 19 games have been decided by one goal, including seven of their last eight home games.
The Rangers have had 17 different players credited with at least one game winning goal this season, which is the most in the NHL.
LITTLE THINGS MAKE A BIG DIFFERENCE
The Rangers currently lead the NHL with 1,615 hits and rank fifth with 884 blocked shots. Dan Girardi currently leads the league with 157 blocked shots, while Brian Boyle (10th, 162 hits) and Ryan Callahan (18th, 146 hits) rank among the league leaders in hits.
YOUTH IS SERVED
The Rangers have the sixth youngest team in the league with an average age of 26 years and 210 days, and the youngest defensive corp in the league with an average age of 24 years and 328 days. *based on NHL rosters on Jan. 11
THE HOT LIST:
* The Rangers penalty kill has allowed only three power play goals against in the last 15 games (40-43, 93.0% over the span)
* New York has out-shot their opponent, 98-38, in the third period of their last eight games
* Marian Gaborik has recorded 12 points (five goals, seven assists) in the last 10 games, including six assists in the last six contests
* Mats Zuccarello has recorded nine points (two goals, seven assists) in the last 12 games, including five assists in the last six contests
* Wojtek Wolski has recorded nine points (three goals, six assists) in 14 games as a Ranger, with eight points (two goals, six assists) in the last 11 contests
* Henrik Lundqvist: 2 wins from 200 NHL career
MILESTONES RECENTLY ACHIEVED:
* Marc Staal: 300th career NHL game (2/7 at DET)
* Derek Boogaard (injured shoulder on Dec. 9) – 27
* Alex Frolov (injured knee on Jan. 8, expected to be sidelined for the remainder of the season) – 14
* Ruslan Fedotenko (shoulder separation on Jan. 19/appendectomy on Feb. 2, 3 weeks) – 9
* Chris Drury (injured knee on Feb. 4, 6 weeks) – 3
Total Man-Games Lost: 214