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About the Rangers - Game 5 - 04-23-16

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

A preview of the Rangers.

When and where: 3 p.m., EDT. Consol Energy Center.

TV: NBC.

Leading Postseason scorer: Center Derick Brassard, 3 points (1 goal, 2 assists).

Last Game: 5-0 home loss in Game 5. Goaltender Henrik Lundqvist made 14 saves for the Rangers.

Probable goaltenders: Matt Murray (2-0-0, 0.50 GAA, .979 SV%) for the Penguins. Lundqvist (1-2-0, 3.27 GAA, .900 SV%).

Injuries: For the Penguins, right winger Bryan Rust (undisclosed) is probable. Goaltender Marc-Andre Fleury (concussion) is out. Right winger Pascal Dupuis (blood clots), center Kevin Porter (right ankle) and left winger Scott Wilson (right ankle or foot) are on injured reserve. For the Rangers, defenseman Dan Girardi ("upper body") is doubtful.

Potential lines and defensive pairings: Neither team had a morning skate. Consider this a guess at the Penguins' lines and pairings:

43 Conor Sheary - 87 Sidney Crosby - 72 Patric Hornqvist
62 Carl Hagelin - 13 Nick Bonino - 81 Phil Kessel
14 Chris Kunitz - 71 Evgeni Malkin - 16 Eric Fehr
34 Tom Kuhnhackl - 7 Matt Cullen - 17 Bryan Rust

Olli Maatta 58 Kris Letang
8 Brian Dumoulin - 6 Trevor Daley
28 Ian Cole - 12 Ben Lovejoy

-Consider this a guess at the Rangers' lines and pairings:

20 Chris Kreider - 21 Derek Stepan - 36 Mats Zuccarello
10 J.T. Miller (above) - 16 Derick Brassard - 61 Rick Nash
12 Eric Staal - 24 Oscar Lindberg - 19 Jesper Fast
15 Tanner Glass - 28 Dominic Moore - 25 Viktor Stalberg

18 Marc Staal - 8 Kevin Klein
93 Keith Yandle - 6 Dylan McIlrath
76 Brady Skjei - 22 Dan Boyle

Notes:

-The last time the Penguins played the Rangers, this happened:

-Rust did not practice Friday for what was termed as a "maintenance day."

-Fleury skated today in his equipment. 

-The Penguins' power play has gone 7 for 19 (36.8 percent) this series. The Rangers' power play has gone 1 for 16 (6.3 percent). 

-The Rangers could insert defenseman Raphael Diaz into the lineup. Rangers coach Alain Vigneault indicated his lineup with regards to his defense will be a game-time decision.

-The referees are (No. 23) Brad Watson and (No. 4) Wes McCauley. The stand-by referee is (No. 6) Francis Charron The linesmen are (No. 71) Brad Kovachik and (No. 82) Ryan Galloway. The stand-by linesman is (No. 75) Derek Amell.

(Photo: Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

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Empty Netter Assists - No looking back - 04-23-16

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

Playoff Stuff
Penguins - Rangers

-"The past is the past, and that’s how we look at it. This is a new team, a new coaching staff, a new experience." - Head coach Mike Sullivan dismissing recent history the Penguins have in having trouble trying to finish series with 3-1 leads.

-The Penguins are getting scoring from everywhere

- "I think he's handled it really well. He's shown a ton of poise. He's got confidence in himself and he's really competitive. I think that's allowed him to play the way he has." - Captain/center Sidney Crosby on goaltender Matt Murray (above).

-Sullivan speaks:

-Crosby speaks:

-Murray speaks:

-Defenseman Kris Letang speaks:

-The Rangers could move defenseman Raphael Diaz into the lineup.

-After the Jump: The Kings are eliminated.

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The Show drops two singles, plays Rex Saturday

Written by Scott Mervis on .

TheShowA new full-length from The Show won’t arrive until spring of 2017, but the Pittsburgh band known for indulging its Britpop instincts is giving us a sweet taste in a pair of digital singles.


The Show, fronted by co-singer-songwriter-guitarists Johnny Saint-Lethal and Brandon Mitchell, love their Oasis, Stone Roses and Verve, which you can hear in the soaring melodies and jangling to grinding guitars of “Sunglasses” and “I Would.”


“ ‘I Would has been around since the ‘Jigsaw’ days,” Saint-Lethal says, referring to the band’s 2009 debut “Here’s To Your Jigsaw.” “Finally one day it worked for us. ‘Sunglasses’ I wrote during what I call my last adolescent summer, 2013...I think you can stretch your adolescence.”


The singles arrive ahead of two-LPs worth of music the band recorded with John Stoecker of Johnny and the Razorblades. The album “Mantra” is slated for spring 2017, followed by “Threadbare” later that year, but there might be a vinyl EP before then.


“We are re-recording both to tape; we’ve only done the demos so far,” Saint-Lethal says, “which is where these recordings of ‘Sunglasses’ and ‘I Would’ came… John Stoecker mixed them up a little bit, fattened them up, we played down a couple harmonies, and sent them off.”


The songs will be available for streaming Saturday on YouTube and at the band's site will be released to radio (The Show has received international airplay). Proceeds from the streams will be donated to Creative.Life.Support program at Mr. Small’s.


The Show will be at the Rex Saturday with Ethan Frano Band, My Friday Slacks, Big Time Machine and Maytide.

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Most players mindful of on-ice language now - 04-22-16

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

It's arguably the most famous video in the history of the Penguins.

It's not a goal. It's not a save. It's not a check or even winning the Stanley Cup.

It's simply two players sitting on a bench jawing – or to use hockey parlance, chirping – at another player.

During the 1991 Stanley Cup Final, Penguins centers Bryan Trottier and left winger Kevin Steven were unleashed a torrent of vulgarity on Minnesota North Stars left winger Brian Bellows as he lined up near the Penguins bench for a faceoff.

In two instances, a homophobic slur was directed at Bellows.

In 2011, Trottier told the Post-Gazette, “It’s not one of my proudest moments.”

The video was a rarity in 1991. Broadcasters almost never had microphones or reporters near the benches. High definition television was barely a concept let alone readily available for most viewers. And the Internet certainly wasn't abundantly available to preserve every image or video.

In 2016, all those things exist.

"You look at that video of [Trottier and Stevens] from the bench yelling," said Penguins defenseman Ian Cole, "Nothing like that really happens today. Not the yelling from the bench part but the content of what was said."

Tuesday, Blackhawks center Andrew Shaw (above) was seen using a homophobic slur at an opponent in a game against the Blues, After apologizing for the outburst  Wednesday, Shaw, who also displayed a middle finger at one point, was suspended one game by the NHL, fined $5,000 and ordered to undergo sensitivity training.

Unlike the 1991 rant of Stevens and Trottier, Shaw's words weren't even audibly recorded but there was video of him using a homophobic word in a clear fashion which landed him in hot water. The video was almost instantaneously turned into a .gif and circulated on Twitter.

With the proliferation of media able to document virtually everything on the ice, players are mindful of their words and actions.

“I'd say they're a little bit more careful," said Penguins center Sidney Crosby. "I think today with cameras and [microphones], everything is picked up so much more maybe. I think everyone is aware kind of what the line is if you cross the line, that type of thing."

"At the end of the day, things are going to be said guys regret. It's emotional. We've all been there. We've said stuff we probably shouldn't have. It's the heat of the moment. Most of the time, you catch yourself right away but it does happen.”

“This day and age with social media, Twitter, that kind of stuff, it gets the ball rolling real quick if something happens," Rangers center Eric Staal said. "There's definitely a lot of technology nowadays. It's one of those things you have to be aware."

It's not just technology which has changed in that time span. Players attitudes have as well, even within the past decade.

“I think I've seen a noticeable change in that type of language in the last five years," said Penguins defenseman Ben Lovejoy. "I think people are becoming much more educated about derogatory terms. If something like that is said, guys aren't comfortable with that now. I think we have come a long way and have even more space to improve.”

“I think it's unfortunate this has happened [Shaw's outburst] but I really do feel the language has cleaned up and it's much better than it used to be," said Rangers left winger Tanner Glass. "It used to be commonplace to hear slurs like that. He got caught. It still does exist a little bit but for the most part, it's much cleaner out there."

The reduction of homophobic language hasn't only happened on NHL rinks but in dressing rooms as well.

"I think a lot of people five, 10 years ago didn't realize how hateful that term is," said Lovejoy. "It has been pretty much eradicated from our locker room. I remember a time when it was commonplace. Guys are becoming more educated. I think we are making strides."

"Even amongst your own teammates, it used to be commonplace for those kind of slurs, as it was in general culture I think," said Glass. "Just as teammates, as players around the league we're trying to let it be known that's not acceptable."

The NHL has made organized efforts to eliminate homophobia from by working with "You Can Play," a group which, as stated on its Web site, "is dedicated to ensuring equality, respect and safety for all athletes, without regard to sexual orientation and/or gender identity."

The group was founded by Patrick Burke, director of the NHL's department of player safety and has had several NHL players speak on its behalf.

"[Burke] has his [You Can Play program] and I think that's something guys truly feel that message," said Cole. "They're not outspoken about it. They're not 'Rah-rah, look at me!' about it but I think every guy in this locker room and every guy honestly I've ever played with truly feels that way."

"I don't think there's anyone that's a bigot in the sense that , “Oh no he's gay. He's truly a terrible person.' I don't think that's something anyone I've ever played with has ever felt. I've never played with a gay teammate but I don't think that's something anyone would have a problem with.”

Regardless of the reasons, it seems clear words like the one Shaw used have are not welcome by his peers.

"I don't think it should have anything to do with cameras or anything," said Penguins defenseman Trevor Daley. "It's something you shouldn't say."

(Photo: Carrie Antlfinger/Associated Press)

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Empty Netter Assists - Recapping Penguins - Rangers - 04-22-16

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

Playoff Stuff
Penguins - Rangers

-The Post-Gazette's recap from last night's game. “We won, 5-0, and played our best game of the series, by far. When we play the right way — with a lot of speed — and try to challenge their [defense], we’re going to be hard to beat.” - Right winger Patric Hornqvist.

-The Associated Press' recap.  "I think he took another big step tonight. I thought his timing was better. He's getting stronger. His conditioning is getting better with each game he's played." - Head coach Mike Sullivan on center Evgeni Malkin.

-Newsday's recap. "We’ve fought back before, but we have to find a way to score some goals. We have to stay positive. We’re not going to get anywhere thinking negatively.” - Rangers right winger Mats Zuccarello.

-The Bergen (N.J.) Record's recap. "It’s definitely out of character for this group to come up with this kind of performance.” - Rangers coach Alain Vigneault

-Highlights:

-Mike Lange's goal calls.

-Malkin was pumped:

-Malkin was popular:

-Goaltender Matt Murray and left winger Conor Sheary had a moment:

-Murray was in position:

-Rangers forward Mats Zuccarello got the drop on Hornqvist:

-Sad time for Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist:

-Sad times for the Rangers:

-Madison Square Garden emptied fast:

-Rangers forward Rick Nash is popular:

-Sullivan speaks:

-Malkin speaks:

-Hornqvist speaks:

-Sheary speaks:

-Center Eric Fehr speaks:

-Murray speaks:

-NBC The NHL announced Game 5 will begin at 3 p.m.

-“These last two more than usual but thought I did a good job of controlling that. A little jittery to start both games but settled in fairly quickly.” - Murray.

-"I was not good enough. It was just a really bad game. I need to be better, simple as that." - Lundqvist on being pulled during the second period.

-Rangers left winger Viktor Stalberg said he never received an apology from defenseman Kris Letang for slashing him in the face during Game 3. Letang indicated he had apologized.

-After the Jump: Chicago stays alive.

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