With Kris Letang (broken nose) and Zbynek Michalek (scratched) out of the line-up with injuries, the Penguins struggled on their own end of the ice. The New York Rangers dominated the second period offensively, scoring four goals in quick succession near the end of the period. Rangers’ goalie Henrik Lundqvist held off an empty-netted Penguins rush in the final minutes of the third period handing the Pens a loss, 4-3.
James Neal put the Pens on the board in the first. With just over two minutes left in the period, Neal received a backhand laser of a pass from Sidney Crosby and found the back of the net past Henrik Lundqvist on the power play to put the Pens up 1-0.
The second period was dominated by the Rangers. Eight minutes in, Ryan Callahan put the Rangers on the board and tied the score at 1-1 by tipping a shot by Marian Gaborik into the net past Marc-Andre Fleury.
John Mitchell and Brad Richards scored a little over a minute apart to put the Rangers ahead 3-1.
Gaborik scored his eleventh goal of the season, a power play goal with just over one minute and thirty seconds remaining in the second to extend the Rangers’ lead to 4-1.
Evgeni Malkin cut the lead in half to 4-2 with only seven seconds left in the period. Assisted by Neal and Steve Sullivan on the play, Malkin blasted a shot past Lundqvist.
Pascal Dupuis did exactly what the Penguins needed to do early in the third period: notched a quick goal. Dupuis scored just over three minutes in, backhanding a shot past Lundqvist on assists from Sidney Crosby and Deryk Engelland to close the gap to 4-3.
The quick goal in the third period was not enough, however, as the Pengions had to kill over two minutes of 5-on-3 penalty time late in the third period. The Pens pulled Fleury in the waning minutes of the period, but they failed to convert.
1. Brad Richards
2. Marian Gaborik
3. Evgeni Malkin
PIT: James Neal (14), Evgeni Malkin (9), Pascal Dupuis (7)
NYR: Ryan Callahan (9), John Mitchell (1), Brad Richards (9), Marian Gaborik (11)
PIT: Sidney Crosby (2), Paul Martin, James Neal, Steve Sullivan, Deryk Engelland
NYR: Marian Gaborik, Brad Richards (2), Carl Hagelin, Brian Boyle, Ruslan Fedotenko, Ryan Callahan, Michael Del Zotto
In the Net:
PIT: Marc-Andre Fleury (L) 23-27
NYR: Henrik Lundqvist (W) 27-30