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Pens, Rangers cap off starkly different opening weekends

Jan 20, 2013, 10:05 PM EDT

NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 20: Henrik Lundqvist #30 of the New York Rangers makes the first period save as Sidney Crosby #87 of the Pittsburgh Penguins looks for the rebound at Madison Square Garden on January 20, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images) Getty Images

The Pittsburgh Penguins and New York Rangers will be dealing with very different emotions following this weekends contests.

The teams ranked first and second when it came to their chances of winning the Stanley Cup as far as the online sports book Bovada was concerned. However, with the Penguins 6-3 victory over the Rangers on Sunday, Pittsburgh is leading the Atlantic Division with a 2-0-0 record while the Rangers are still searching for their first win.

Fortunately for the Rangers, their schedule isn’t as initially heavy as some other teams. After playing in back-to-back games over the weekend, they will only participate in five contests over the next 11 days. That will give them time to adjust rather than being forced to sort their problems out on the fly.

Another silver lining for the Rangers is that they did look good towards the end of Sunday’s game and while it was too little, too late, Rick Nash and Derek Stepan combined for an impressive shorthanded goal late in the third period.

Still, moral victories will only take them so far. They need to start accumulating actual points soon if they don’t want to wind up in a rather deep hole.

  1. cbghockeyvideos87 - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:11 PM


  2. pens87 - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:13 PM

    Great start for the Pens!

    It’s nice to have a backup that can step in and play well. The defense is looking good and the offense is looking deadly. That Malkin to Neal connection is just magic.

    I only hope they can keep this up. Please don’t burn out again this year boys! There are still 46 games to be played, and the games definitely will not be getting any easier.

  3. steelers88 - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:15 PM

    I think this team will get even better! Malkin and Crosby haven’t even scored a goal. Voukoun is a way better than Johnson was. I also think they want to prove something and I think their mentally tougher this year than last.

  4. bdrs17 - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:18 PM

    Flyers got disemboweled this afternoon.

    • cbghockeyvideos87 - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:24 PM


  5. uscthom78 - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:18 PM

    Wherever Nash seems to play, his team loses. I guess there is hope for CBJ.

    • hockeywithdrawal - Jan 21, 2013 at 8:14 AM

      Nash was awesome this weekend.

      • rogersjd16 - Jan 21, 2013 at 10:21 AM

        B’s season ticket holder – not sure I’d call him “awesome” in Saturday’s game. He had the assist on the Richards goal, but he was neutralized pretty much whole game. Lost puck coming through center a few times. He’s always going to be a force, but he wasn’t much of a factor on Saturday. Credit Chara and Co.

        And, he was a little timid in offensive zone, but Dougie Hamilton looked great on blue line.

  6. killerpgh - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:19 PM

    Winning the Atlantic division will be huge for whatever team wins it. Chances are the teams the finish 2nd and 3rd in the division will play each other in the first round in the 4th/5th playoff series.

  7. juliath83 - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:33 PM

    Penguins!!! Flyers!!! Penguins!!! Flyers!!! Rangers!!!! Penguins!!! Flyers!!! Penguins!!! Flyers!!! Rangers!!!! Penguins!!! Flyers!!! Penguins!!! Flyers!!!

  8. steelers88 - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:35 PM

    Pens still have to play the NYR PHI and NJ a combined 16 more times. Those games will be huge. Pens also need to beat teams like the Leafs Canadiens Jets and the Islanders. The division will probably come down the final day. I think the Flyers and Rangers will rebound and don’t forget about NJ.

    • xavier46 - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:54 PM

      Incorrect, they play tose teams a combined 11 more times; 4 vs NJ, 4 vs NYR, 3 vs PHI.

  9. broadstbully33 - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:42 PM

    Pens fans just can’t get Philly out of their heads… Still butt hurt over playoffs

    • killerpgh - Jan 20, 2013 at 11:20 PM

      Says the Flyers fan who clicked and commented on a story that had nothing to do with the Flyers but has Pens in the title.

      • phillyphanatic77 - Jan 21, 2013 at 12:42 AM

        Take a look at the Flyers pages … it’s 75% Pens fans gloating.

      • sportsfreak13 - Jan 21, 2013 at 12:45 AM

        Sry man but its more like 75% flyer fans complaint about the refs. Tell me more how much Crosby whines please.

    • sportsfreak13 - Jan 21, 2013 at 12:43 AM

      Flyers became a afterthought after the horn blew at the end of game 1. Now the only time I think about them is when I need a laugh, so i look at their record.

      • phillyphanatic77 - Jan 21, 2013 at 2:28 PM

        They’re not 0-48. You guys won, the Pens played better. I can readily admit the Pens look sick right now. Bc Im not completely blinded by my philadelphia slant. But it was one regular season win. Its two games into the season. You talk about philly fans being sore losers, use some perspective and just attempt being a gracious winner.

      • sportsfreak13 - Jan 21, 2013 at 4:16 PM

        Everything you said phillyphanatic77 is spot on right. However i have a very hard time being a gracious winner after having to hear it from philly fans for the past 273 days (thanks to the lockout) about last years playoffs. Ill always talk trash (repectively of course) when we win against you guys, at the same time i have no problem recieving it either, and trust me it was well deserved after the playoffs last year. New year, new team, same great rivalry. Im just soo pumped hockey is back.

    • hockeywithdrawal - Jan 21, 2013 at 8:13 AM

      Am I the only one that thinks broadstbully and phillyphanatic or whatever are the same person?

      • phillyphanatic77 - Jan 21, 2013 at 2:01 PM

        Haha Please I would never say the pens are “butt hurt” over anything. It’s ridiculous to assume flyers fans are the same person just because we may agree on something.

  10. sjtorpitt - Jan 20, 2013 at 10:59 PM

    Lethal powerplay.

  11. steelers88 - Jan 20, 2013 at 11:41 PM

    Penguins top Powerplay unit is really nasty. Malkin and Crosby aren’t even hot yet! I feel for the other teams that play against the Pens when Malkin and Crosby are both hot!

  12. johnstone17 - Jan 21, 2013 at 1:46 AM

    Don’t like to panic, but if the Rangers continue with the effort they gave over the weekend, it will get late very early around here !!!!!

  13. fugubeach - Jan 21, 2013 at 2:02 AM

    Didnt the rangers start off last season 0-3-0? Look at wat seed they were at the end of the season

    • johnstone17 - Jan 21, 2013 at 6:18 AM

      With a 48 game schedule it is a way different story this year.

    • hockeywithdrawal - Jan 21, 2013 at 8:11 AM

      I think the only problem was that outside of Nash, everyone seemed pretty mild out there.

  14. hockeywithdrawal - Jan 21, 2013 at 8:10 AM

    I loved the Pens weekend – two great wins and neither Malkin nor Crosby scored…meaning the entire team came to play. Awesome. And Orpik….ermagerd…

    I have to say it though – Nash was awesome in Sunday’s game…I had forgotten how hard that guy can hit. He’s good.

    • jpelle82 - Jan 21, 2013 at 9:53 AM

      kreider found out what a healthy orpik can do…

  15. mafmvp - Jan 21, 2013 at 4:07 PM

    The Hockey Gods could not assemble a better power play. The Franchise is so deep this year. When you start 2-0 without goals from Malkin or SCSid, you know the entire team is playing well. Cue the dynasty talk because this team ain’t slowing down

    • steelcityfranchise - Jan 21, 2013 at 5:24 PM

      All hail!!!…The Franchise has returned to wage war on those who wish to challenge its superiority!!!!!

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