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Pens Points: Win or Go Home

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Penguins hold out hope as they face a do-or-die Game 4 against the Islanders.

New York Islanders v Pittsburgh Penguins - Game Three Photo by Justin Berl/Getty Images

The odds are not in their favor, but the Penguins are holding out hope they can become the fifth team in NHL history to come back from a 0-3 series deficit. If they are to do the seemingly impossible, it will have to begin tonight when they take on the Islanders in Game 4 of their first round series.

Puck drop is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. and will be broadcast locally on AT&T Sports Network and nationally on NBCSN.

Ready yourself for do-or-die with this morning’s Pens Points...

This is nowhere near an ideal situation for the Penguins to be in, but it is not an impossible deficit to recover from. Teams trailing 0-3 in a series have comeback four times in Stanley Cup playoff history, twice since 2010. Some younger Penguins even have experience erasing the deficit when the WBS Penguins did it in 2013. [Pensburgh]

Less than a week ago, the Penguins were on the eve of beginning the playoffs and considered one of the favorites to win the Stanley Cup. Fast forward six days, the Penguins are now on the brink of elimination and all we can do is watch and ask what went wrong. [Pensburgh]

More likely than not, the Penguins will be eliminated by the New York Islanders barring a historic turnaround. It will be a disappointment for sure, but there is still a chance for the Penguins to go down with a fight and at least make the Islanders earn their spot in the next round. [Pensburgh]

While the Islanders’ tars have been front and center during this series, the Penguins are still waiting for their big names to show up. You can credit the Islanders for keeping the likes of Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and Phil Kessel off the scoreboard, but they are hardly the first team to silence the Penguins’ big guns. [Trib Live]

After Sunday’s letdown in Game 3 to send themselves into a 0-3 hole against the Islanders, the Penguins stayed away from the ice on Monday to clear their heads. Mike Sullivan canceled practice on Monday, and the players sought distractions to keep their minds off the reality they face come Tuesday. [Trib Live]

Although the Penguins did not practice on the ice Monday, players did gather at UPMC Lemieux to watch tape to try and find a solution to the Islanders’ puzzle. Head coach Mike Sullivan revealed the team’s postseason plan was to cancel practice on Monday regardless of the series standing. [Trib Live]

Only four teams in NHL history have wiped away a 0-3 deficit to win a series. While history may not be on the Penguins’ side, there is proof that the seemingly impossible can be done. Sidney Crosby has accomplished just about everything in his NHL career, but he would not mind adding a 0-3 comeback to his resume. [Trib Live]

If the Penguins are to erase this deficit and pull off a historic comeback, it will all have to start this evening with a victory in Game 4. Right now, that’s all they can focus on. [Penguins]

One thing the Penguins must do to, not only win Game 4, but have any success going forward is to limit the amount of odd man rushes they allow. This has been an issue that plagued the team all season, but it presents an opportunity for them to cut down on the Islanders’ scoring chances. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

Chico Resch knows a little something about coming back from an 0-3 deficit. He was the Islanders’ goaltender in 1975 when he helped his team erase a 0-3 against the... Penguins. Perhaps the Penguins should listen to some of his advice. [Pittsburgh Post-Gazette]

News and notes from around the NHL...

A new coach has entered the Metro division for next season, and it will be a familiar face. On Monday, the Philadelphia Flyers named Alain Vigneault as their next head coach, replacing interim head coach Scott Gordon. [Flyers]

If the Toronto Maple Leafs are to eliminate the Boston Bruins in their first round series, they will have to do so without the services of center Nazem Kadri. The NHL Department of Player Safety suspended Kadri for the rest of the first round, meaning he will miss a minimum of three games and maximum of five games for his cross-check to the head of Jake DeBrusk. [ESPN]