NHL: Shorthand a success in Penguins win over Rangers

Thursday, March 1, 2007

Pittsburgh Penguins 4 3 New York Rangers

Sidney Crosby received the #1 Star of the Game.

Today, the Pittsburgh Penguins took on the New York Rangers in Madison Square Garden, New York.

Jaromir Jagr struck first for New York, with Michael Nylander following suit in the final 2:30 to give the Rangers a comfortable 2-0 lead at the end of the second period. Staal's shorthanded goal came 76 seconds into the final period, with Staal beating Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist with a soft forehand shot. Penguins winger Colby Armstrong continued the shorthanded show, scoring less than 2:00 later with a bad angle shot, which would ricochet off of Lundqvist's pad.

When all momentum had seemingly crossed to the Penguins, Blair Betts fired a goal to restore New York's lead at 3-2. Sergei Gonchar tied it up again late in the 3rd, with a blistering shot on a Penguins power play to level the score at 3-3. In the shootout, not a single score occurred until NHL scoring leader Sidney Crosby took the ice. With the shootout tied 0-0, and a point on the line, Crosby beat Lundqvist, lifting Pittsburgh to victory. The game was not a total loss for the Rangers, though, as they picked up a precious point by forcing overtime.

Penguins rookie Jordan Staal wasn't supposed to make the team, and once he did make it, he wasn't expected to contribute more than assisting on the penalty kill and filling in on the fourth line. Not much could be expected of an 18 year old rookie not named Sidney Crosby. That was the premise before the season started, at least. Now, heading into the stretch run toward the NHL Playoffs, Staal leads not just rookies, but the entire National Hockey League in shorthanded goals, after notching his 6th of the season, his 26th total goal.

Three Stars of the Game