Crosby, the Penguins have Rangers on the edge who are heading into the game Sports news

VIN A. CHERWOO, AP sports writer

Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins were braked during the regular season by Igor Shesterkin. Now they have chased the Vezina Trophy finalist from the New York Rangers in the last two games, and from advancing to the 2nd round of the playoffs they are divided by one win for the first time in four years.

They can do it on Wednesday night at Game 5 in Madison Square Garden, where they have earned a split of the first two games.

After scoring only four goals against Shesterkin in four regular season games, the Penguins have set him on fire for 10 goals in three-thirds in the last two games. He left after scoring four goals in the first period of game 3 and then again when he scored six goals in two thirds of game 4.

“I guess he’s really frustrated.” There were probably four goals that were averted (Monday night), “said New York coach Gerard Gallant after losing 7: 2 in match 5 before declaring that he intended to stay with Shesterkin in match 5.” He will return there and I’ll be ready to win another match on Wednesday night. I have all the confidence of the world in him. … He is the best goalkeeper in the league. “

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As surprising as Shesterkin’s matches were, so was Penguins goalkeeper Louis Dominge’s solid game. Pittsburgh Goalkeeper no. 3 came to the fore due to injuries from starter Tristan Jarry and backup Casey DeSmith and finished 3: 1 with an average of 3.40 goals and 0.906 percent rescue.

The Penguins, who have made their 16th consecutive season, also have great confidence after their last victory pushed them to the brink of advancement for the first time since the second round in 2018 after each other’s Stanley Cup games.

“We have to stay hungry and stay in the moment,” Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said. “We have a veteran leadership, we have a great group there that has gone through a lot of playoff experience and understands how difficult it is.” The elimination game is always the hardest. “

After three goals and three assists in the previous three seasons, Crosby has two goals and seven assists in this series. He expects the Rangers to do their best.

“We know we still have a lot of work to do,” he said. “They’re a good hockey team. We certainly have the opportunity, but we know that going to New York will be a big challenge.”

CAPITALS on PANTHERS, series draw 2: 2 (19:30 EDT, ESPN2)

The Panthers, who won the Presidential Trophy, gathered in the third period of the 4th game to level the series and regain the advantage of the home ice. At home they were the best in the league 34-7-0 during the season.

“I am happy that we won the match and can return home in front of our home fans and compete again with the draw of the series,” said Verhaege. “Now it’s the best of three.” Again, we have the advantage of domestic ice, so I think about it the most. “

Key statistics to look out for: of the 277 previous matches, the series of the top seven has been a draw after four matches, with the winner of the 5th game advancing 219 times (79.1%).

The Capitals, the second wild card in the Eastern Conference, know they have missed a chance to get into the lead of the series. Instead, they are even in a series in which the teams take turns.

“It was in our hands,” said striker Yevgeny Kuznetsov, who gave Washington a 2: 1 lead in the middle of the third period. “There is no panic. You still have a pretty good chance. “

STARS at FLAMES, series draw 2: 2 (21:30 EDT, ESPN)

The Flames Pacific Champion returned from defeats in a row and leveled the series with a 4: 1 victory in Match 4.

Johnny Gaudreau scored his first goal in a series from a penalty kick in the third period and Calgary never lost. The fifth match is played Wednesday at Saddledome, where the Flames won 25-9-7 in the regular season.

“It’s nice to win this victory, but I think the moment is that we’re going home and playing in front of our fans,” Gaudreau said. “Now it’s a series of three games.”

The Flames scored only three goals in total, losing two of the first three matches, but overcame this performance with continued pressure in the offensive zone in Match 4.

“We’ve had a lot of long changes in their zone,” said Rasmus Andersson of Calgary. “Not too many penalties, so we can play 5 on 5 and we’re a really good team.”

Follow Vin Cherwoo at http://www.twitter.com/VinCherwooAP

More NHL APs: https://apnews.com/hub/NHL and https://twitter.com/AP_Sports

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