Two of the five best defensive teams in the NHL will collide in the first round of the Eastern Conference Playoffs. The New York Rangers have the home court advantage and will host the Pittsburgh Penguins in Madison Square Garden in New York City, NY on May 3, 2022.
- New York Rangers vs Pittsburgh Penguins
- NHL – Playoffs, Eastern Conference First Round
- Date – 3/5/2022
- Starting time – 7 PM ET
- Venue: Madison Square Garden, New York City, NY
New York Rangers Stats & Form
The New York Rangers are coming off their best regular season in the past couple of years as they finished fourth in the Eastern Conference with a 52-24-6 record.
This is the Rangers’ first Playoff appearance in five years after they won 25 more games than last season.
The Rangers have just two players — forwards Mika Zibanejad and Chris Kreider — left from the team that reached the second round in 2017. About a dozen players remain from the team that was swept 0-3 in the qualifying round by Carolina two years ago.
Igor Shesterkin is a Vezina Trophy candidate for the Rangers after going 36-13-4 with six shutouts. His 2.07 goals-against average and a .935 save percentage were the best in the league. He was 3-1 with a 1.01 GAA and .960 save-percentage in four starts against the Penguins.
New York Rangers News
Samuel Blais, Andrew Copp, Tyler Motte and Artemi Panarin will not play for the Rangers.
Pittsburgh Penguins Stats & Form
The Pittsburgh Penguins finished the regular season at seventh place in the Eastern Conference with a 46-25-11 record. They finished the regular season winning 3 of the last 5 games.
The Penguins have the longest current streak of playoff appearances in North American sports, but have not won a series the last three years. They reached the second round in 2018 after winning the Stanley Cup the previous two years.
Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, Jake Guentzel and Kris Letang lead the core of eight Penguins that are still around from the team that won its last Cup five years ago.
The Penguins are expected to be without Tristan Jarry (34-18-6, 2.42 GAA, .919 save percentage) at the start of the series while he deals with a lower-body injury sustained more than two weeks ago. Casey DeSmith (11-6-5, 2.79, .914) will get the nod in his place.
Pittsburgh Penguins News
Nathan Beaulieu and Tristan Jarry will not suit up for the Penguins.
New York Rangers vs Pittsburgh Penguins Head-to-Head Stats
Both teams have won 5 of the last 10 head-to-head meetings with the New York Rangers winning the last three games.
Three of the last four games between these two teams have finished under 5.5 goals.
New York Rangers vs Pittsburgh Penguins Betting Odds
The New York Rangers are slight favourites in this game with 119 odds to win while the Penguins are at 176. The draw is set at 324.
The total goals margin is set at 5.5 with -108 to go over and -116 for under.
Both teams are entering the Playoffs hoping for a deep run and their defence will be their main asset in that way. The Rangers have won the last three games against the Penguins and have the home court advantage which makes them favourites to advance. The Penguins’ first goalkeeper Tristan Jarry will miss Game 1 which also goes in the Rangers’ favour. Anyway, this will be a tight game with not a lot of scoring as both teams will be defensively oriented.
The Rangers are the favourites to win but the safest bet is under 5.5 goals as 3 of the last 4 games between these two teams have finished under this margin. Having in mind that this is a Playoff game, the chances for that are even bigger.