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Breaking down the Numbers: Penguins vs. Rangers

The Penguins traveled to Madison Square Garden in New York City to take on the Rangers and came away with a win. Henrik Lundqvist did not throw the net off of its moorings, so he has improved in levels of maturity. Progress.

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

A rough start for a typical afternoon game, a good 2nd period getting it together, surging in the 3rd, coming away with a win. Nice game for a bad start.

Lines and Pairings



Conor Sheary. The kid can flat out play at times. He finds ways to fit anywhere in the lineup, and scored two big goals in this one. Mike Sullivan speaks of him like a proud father.

Resiliency. The Penguins multiple times gave up the lead they established, but did a god job of keeping the pedal down to get the win, and kept coming back for more when the Rangers would equalize the score.

Fleury. He kept the Penguins in this game early, having no business being in it at times. Nice to see him get some goal support too. Also, gigantic fan of his ability to not take the bait from a reporter in calling out his teammates.

Bryan Rust's Energy. Fantastic shift with the Rangers net empty, where he beat out an icing and kept the puck alive, where Sidney Crosby finished it to seal the game.

Dominik Simon's NHL Debut. First NHL point in his first game. Pretty cool. Believe I read that five players from the 2015 Draft class have registered a point in their NHL careers. The Penguins have two of them (Simon, and Daniel Sprong).

Henrik Lundqvist did not flip the net off of it's moorings. This is good. HOWEVER. It wouldn't be a Rangers game without one of their players making a pissbaby of themselves. This time: Mats Zucarello.


No Malkin. The Penguins will surely miss Evgeni Malkin while he is on the shelf for 6-8 weeks, but the Penguins have the most center depth they've ever had (with Nick Bonino, Matt Cullen, and Eric Fehr), so it seems a bit silly to cancel the season just yet.

Brutal start. The positive to draw on from this negative is Fleury, as well as the resiliency.


Rangers Penguins
Goals 3 (Kreider, Brassard, McDonagh) 5 (Hornqvist, Sheary, Sheary, Cullen, Crosby EN)
Shots on Goal 27 33
5v5 Corsi For Percentage 53.1% 46.9%

Running Shot Attempts

From this perspective, you can really see the brutal start to the 1st period, save for the power play at the end that kind of righted the ship a bit. After that, nice to see Pittsburgh take control of the shot attempts battle.

Even Strength Shot Attempts

Rangers seemed to have more shot attempts in the high-danger areas, but Pittsburgh really kept theirs to the middle of the ice.

Power Play Shot Attempts

Haha the Penguins scored a PP goal from behind the net.

Shot attempt charts provided by War on Ice.

Expected Goals

Really even game in terms of Expected Goals. Both teams with some big chances and good goaltending. That middle of the net-front area for Pittsburgh is nice to see.

A refresher of the key for these charts:

More information and description/analysis of Expected Goals can be found here on Hockey Graphs.

In the previous post here using these charts for the first time, I mentioned how it factors in things like shot quality. A more detailed list of what factors into that shot quality is below:

Expected Goals map provided by Don't Tell Me About Heart.

Head-to-Head Shot Attempts

The Crosby line was really the only one to gain any significant traction vs. any specific lines or pairings.

A basic description on how to read these charts: Cross reference a player from each team, and that box shows how many shot attempts each team had while those two players shared ice time. The + and - are from the home team's perspective.

For a refresher on how to read these charts, a write-up with descriptions of what colors mean, which lines to read, and more: H2H Corsi Chart Primer

H2H Chart via Muneeb Alam from Japers' Rink

Individual Shot Attempts

Not a great game for Pittsburgh, save for the top line with Crosby.

Individual Shot Attempts Charts via War on Ice

Dan Girardi is terms of being an anchor. It has to almost be categorized as a skill to be able to bring Ryan McDonagh down that far.

Ice-time vs. Possession Charts via Sean Tierney

Line-by-Line Shot Attempts

Looks about right. Sheary seeing some time with Crosby explains the anomaly.

Nothing special, nothing terrible. Didn't cost them the game but no one did anything outstanding either.

Line-by-line data via Hockey Stats

The Pens have Monday off, before heading into more Metropolitan matchups, with the Islanders, Hurricanes, and Flyers looming.

We'll all surely be schedule watching the Red Wings and the Flyers too.