This was a game that started off really well for the Penguins. They controlled play for much of the first period and looked pretty dominant in doing so. The Rangers weren't skating well and the Penguins were getting some unreal looks but Henrik Lundqvist gave the Rangers a chance with some really outstanding goaltending and the offense bounced back with a pair of goals only 65 seconds apart in the final three minutes of the first period and a pretty good period was lost and really the Penguins never bounced back.
They were able to get on the board and make things interesting as Kris Letang found the back of the net on the power play when the Penguins were down 3-0 with about five minutes left in the second period and could have used that to really get back into the game but they gave that goal right back to the Rangers when Ryan Callahan was part of a double deflected shot that beat Marc-Andre Fleury and just about iced this game.
The Penguins started off strong but looked like they were disinterested for much of the night. I know that really isn't the case but it never seemed like they were able to recover after the two quick goals in the first period after it looked like they carried the play. That is a tough thing to bounce back from but you need to do a better job of that and the Penguins didn't.
Fleury wasn't overly good but I am not really sure how much of it was on him. The first three goals beat him blocker side. The fourth goal was a pretty wicked double deflection and two of the first three goals were a direct result of bad turnovers but at the same time Fleury needs to come up with a big save. He has been really good so far this year but if he can make a huge save and keep the score only 1-0 in the first or kept the Rangers at two goals before Letang found the back of the net then you never know what can happen.
Oh man, was Dustin Jeffrey bad or what? I talked about the two turnovers that led to Rangers goals and both of them were pretty brutal turnovers from DJ. Just a brutal games from him and even when he was turning the puck over he was unable to get back in the play to defend against it and that is something that probably isn't going to sit well with Dan Bylsma.
Overall this just wasn't a good game. The Penguins came out playing well but Lundqvist was on top of his game and after the Penguins fell behind they just seemed like they never had a chance to recover. A lot of sloppy play in the second period and it cost them tonight. Saturday is going to be a really tough contest as they have to travel to St. Louis so that should be fun.