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Game 5 Preview: New York Islanders @ Pittsburgh Penguins

The Pens and Isles are back at it for a critical Game 5 tonight. Here’s all the info you need to know

New York Islanders v Pittsburgh Penguins - Game Two Photo by Emilee Chinn/Getty Images

Who: New York Islanders (2-2) @ Pittsburgh Penguins (2-2)

When: 7:00 p.m. eastern

How to Watch: AT&T Sportsnet in Pittsburgh, MSG/MSG+ in the New York area, NBCSN nationally

Opponent Track: The Islanders put a great effort for Game 4, winning 4-1 to avoid going into a hole and bringing the series even.

Pens path ahead: Game 6 is back on Long Island on Wednesday, where the loser of tonight’s game will face elimination. A Game 7, if needed will be Friday.

SBN Team Counterpart: Check out Lighthouse Hockey for the latest news to know about the Islanders.

Game 4 Lines


Leo Komarov - Mathew Barzal - Jordan Eberle

Anthony Beauvillier - Brock Nelson - Josh Bailey

Kyle Palmieri - Jean-Gabriel Pageau - Oliver Wahlstrom

Cal Clutterbuck - Casey Cizikas - Matt Martin


Adam Pelech / Ryan Pulock

Nick Leddy / Scott Mayfield

Andy Greene / Noah Dobson

Possible Starting goalie: Ilya Sorokin

Scratches: Ross Johnston, Anatoly Golyshev, Simon Holmstrom, Kieffer Bellows, Otto Koivula, Austin Czarnik, Michael Del Colle, Cole Bardeau, Dmytro Timashev, Braydon Coburn, Samuel Bolduc, Bode Wilde, Grant Hutton, Sebastian Aho, Ken Appleby, Cory Schneider

IR: Anders Lee, Johnny Boychuk

—ls Ilya Sorokin set to be next in a long line of playoff goaltenders that have frustrated the Penguins (Jaroslav Halak, Tuukka Rask, Robin Lehner, Carey Price)? Sorokin was sterling in Game 4 and is up to 68 saves on 72 shots (.944 save%) and 2-0 in these playoffs. The Pens did light Sorokin up on March 27th — scoring four goals on just nine shots and chasing him from the game in 26:18, maybe they should re-watch that game film to get in the right mindset for tonight.

—The team that has scored first has gone on to be 4-0 so far this series. I wouldn’t recommend turning the game off after the first goal, but given styles and defensive mindsets, that first goal can be and has been very telling.

Islanders gearing up for Game 5

NYI is looking to build off a strong Game 4 as they head back to the road. Via Brian Compton at

“I think our game’s getting better as we go along here, so I’m looking forward to it,” Trotz said. “I’m looking forward to the challenge. Both teams are going to be ramped up. Tomorrow night after the game, one team’s going to have their back against the wall, so it’s best out of three. That’s it.

“Tomorrow, you don’t worry about getting two (wins), just get the first shift tomorrow, first period, and we’ll go from there. But both teams, there’s not much separating the teams. It’s nose-to-nose.”

The Islanders have been mostly successful in keeping Sidney Crosby off the score sheet; the Penguins center has not scored a point in three straight games and was held to two shots on goal in Game 4. Trotz has seen plenty of Crosby dating to his time as coach of the Washington Capitals (2014-18) and knows the Pittsburgh captain is a threat each time he’s on the ice.

“He’s had one goal, but he’s dangerous,” Trotz said. “He’s an elite player who plays an elite game night in and night out. We just hope to contain him.

“The top players like him, I have so much respect for Sid as a player and a person. This is the fifth time going against Sid in the playoffs for myself, and he’s an exceptional player and a great example of what an NHL player is in this league. He’s a gold standard. He’s carried this league, with him and [Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin], I think, when the League really needed it. Him and ‘Ovi’ carried it. He’s been a great ambassador and a great example of the NHL.”

And now for the Pens..

Game 4 lines


Jake Guentzel - Sidney Crosby - Bryan Rust

Jason Zucker- Evgeni Malkin - Kasperi Kapanen

Jared McCann - Jeff Carter - Frederick Gaudreau

Zach Aston-Reese - Teddy Blueger - Brandon Tanev


Brian Dumoulin / Kris Letang

Mike Matheson / Cody Ceci

Marcus Pettersson / John Marino

Starting goalie: Tristan Jarry

Scratches: Evan Rodrigues Colton Sceviour, Sam Lafferty, Radim Zohorna, Mark Jankowski, Juuso Riikola, Chad Ruhwedel, Mark Friedman, Yannick Weber, Casey DeSmith

—The Penguins were off the ice yesterday as they traveled back to Pittsburgh.

—When it comes to home games, this season Tristan Jarry is 5-1-0 against the Islanders (regular season plus playoffs) with a 1.96 goals-against average and a .940 save percentage. The one loss did come in Game 1, however, but Jarry bounced back for a very strong Game 2 where he only surrendered a goal. The Pens will be looking for that type of effort from the crease out today.

Charting history

The all-time outlook for the Penguins when a series is tied 2-2:

The Penguins have an all-time series record of 15-9 in best-of-seven playoff series when entering Game 5 tied 2-2 in the series. In those series where Pittsburgh has home-ice advantage, they are 8-5.

Milestones in sight

From the Pens’ PR department, here are some individual metrics and history we could see tonight:

  • By dressing, Kris Letang will surpass Jaromir Jagr (140) for the third place on the team’s all-time playoff games played list
  • Evgeni Malkin is one assist from tying Denis Potvin for 20th place on the NHL’s all-time playoff assists list with 108
  • Malkin is one point from tying Mario Lemieux for second place on the team’s all-time playoff points list with 172
  • Sidney Crosby is one point from surpassing Brett Hull (190) for sole possession of seventh place on the NHL’s all-time playoff points list with 191
  • Crosby is one power-play goal from tying Kevin Stevens for third place on the team’s all-time playoff power-play goals list with 20
  • Crosby is one assist shy of sole possession of 10th place on the NHL’s all-time playoff assists list with 122
  • Malkin is one power-play goal from tying Denis Potvin (28) for seventh place on the NHL’s all-time power-play goals list