This hasn’t been a very good year for the Pittsburgh Penguins, but after six wins in their last seven games, they’re back in the hunt for a playoff spot in the Metropolitan Division. They’ll try to improve their position this Wednesday (8 PM ET, NBCSN) at the expense of the New York Rangers, who have won six of their last eight.
Both teams could be missing key players on Wednesday. The 27-18-7 Penguins have been without centre Evgeni Malkin (23 goals, 26 assists) for the past three games due to a lower-body injury, while the 30-18-5 Rangers have played the last six games without left wing Rick Nash (12 goals, 21 assists), who’s out with a bone bruise in his left leg. Both Malkin and Nash are listed as day-to-day.
At press time, the two No. 1 goaltenders are projected to suit up for their respective clubs: Marc-Andre Fleury (.920 save percentage) for Pittsburgh and Henrik Lundqvist (.921 SV%) for New York. This will be their first meeting of the season. Last April, Lundqvist and the Rangers beat Fleury’s Penguins in five games during the first round of the playoffs; each New York win had a final score of 2-1.