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Pens rally late but fall in OT to Rangers

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Ryan Callahan scored 3:38 into overtime and the New York Rangers beat the Penguins 3-2 in a game that featured four goals in the final five minutes. The Penguins erased a 1-0 deficit when Chris Kunitz and Matt Cooke scored 38 seconds apart in the final 2:31 of regulation, but the Rangers Marc Staal scored a shorthanded goal with 1:26 left to send the game to OT.

Rangers 3 - Penguins 2 OT

Consol Energy Center, Pittsburgh

It’s one thing to have a wild third period – the Penguins have encountered that already this year – but it seems unlikely that they will have another final 2:31 minutes as they did Monday night against the Rangers. Henrik Lundqvist made 37 saves in what looked like would be a come-from-behind win for the Penguins, but ended up as a 3-2 overtime loss. After stymieing Pittsburgh the entire game, Lundqvist gave up two goals in 38 seconds, giving the Pens a 2-1 lead with less than two minutes to play. This inspired an enraged Lundqvist to break his stick in half over the crossbar, taking an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty and giving the home team a chance to seal the win with a third goal. Special teams’ failures, however, resulted in the tying goal for the Rangers, as they were the team that managed to cash in on the Penguins’ sixth power play chance. An odd-man break for Brandon Dubinski and Ryan Callahan in the extra frame allowed Callahan to put the game away for New York. The Pens and Rangers entered the contest tied with 19 points and nine wins; needless to say, neither Atlantic Division team wanted their win to be in overtime. The Rangers settled on giving Pittsburgh a point in the standings, though, and still have a game in hand over the Pens.


Evgeni Malkin’s stellar play highlighted the first period. He had opportunities to score, but spent more time setting up his teammates, including new Pen and linemate Arron Asham, for excellent chances. While the Penguins carried play throughout the first, outshooting the Blue Shirts 12-5, Henrik Lunkqvist stayed sharp through the barrage of shots the Pens directed his way, and the game remained tied at zero after 20 minutes of play.

Dan Girardi took an interference penalty shortly after Crosby’s scoring chance, giving the Pens’ their first power play of the game. Alex Goligoski’s hard shot from the high slot on the power play rung off of the post behind Lundqvist, keeping the game score-less.

Even though the shots to that point were 20-7 in favor of the Pens, the Rangers broke the stalemate as former Pens Erik Christensen and Ruslan Fedotenko combined for a goal 10:16 into the period. Cycling and consistent pressure in the Penguins’ zone led to the first goal of the game. Fedotenko fed a cross-ice pass to Christensen, whose turning shot deflected off of Deryk Engelland’s skate and floated over Fleury’s left arm. The Penguins best chance to tie the game before the period ended came when Marc Staal’s blade scraped Pascal Dupuis enough to warrant a double minor. The crowd harangued the home team a bit as 2:45 elapsed on the power play and the period with no real chances.

The remaining 1:15 on the Penguins’ four-minute man-advantage passed without much action – and no shots – to start the third period. The Penguins’ power play finally seemed to start clicking by their fifth attempt. While they didn’t score on the actual power play, momentum carried over, and just six seconds after it expired Chris Kunitz found a rebound in the crease and pushed it past Lundqvist, tying the game and ruining the Swede’s shutout attempt. Matt Cooke put the Penguins up 2-1 with a shot that beat Lundqvist on his short side, causing the goalie the take an undisciplined penalty.

The Penguins didn’t just come up empty on their last power play, though. They allowed Marc Staal to score the tying goal, subsequently lost in overtime, and missed a chance to build momentum and rise in the standings.


"It looked like it was going to be a 0-0 (or) 1-0 type of game, but it ends up with a flurry of goals there."

--Dan Bylsma


Goals: Chris Kunitz and Matt Cooke both tallied for the Penguins while Erik Christensen, Marc Staal and Ryan Callahan each scored once for New York.

Assists: Evgeni Malkin, Sidney Crosby and Pascal Dupuis assisted once for the Penguins. Brandon Dubinsky had two assists, and Ruslan Fedotenko, Matt Gilroy, Ryan Callahan and Dan Girardi each had one for the Rangers.


Marc-Andre Fleury made 22 saves while Henrik Lundqvist turned aside 37 of 39 shots in the Rangers’ victory.


The Penguins failed to score on six power play chances and gave up a shorthanded goal. The Rangers did not have a power play opportunity.


The Pens take on the amazing Sedin twins and the rest of the Canucks when Vancouver visits the Consol Wednesday night.

Penguins 9-8-2

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