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Bylsma says Pens’ power play didn’t attack enough in Game 5

May 9, 2014, 11:20 PM EDT

Dan Bylsma AP

Since Game 2 of their first-round series against the Philadelphia Flyers, the New York Rangers’ power play was either neutralized or an albatross, but that changed in a 5-1 Game 5 win against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Friday. That unit finally broke through with a 2-for-3 night, shifting the special teams questions to Pittsburgh this time around.

As it turns out, Pittsburgh’s PP problems probably deserve some attention, too. The Penguins went 0-for-4 on the night, prompting some criticism from head coach Dan Bylsma after the game.

“I don’t think we’ve attacked and shot enough on our power play,” Bylsma said.

5-on-3 fails

He pointed to one sequence in particular: the Penguins had a 5-on-3 opportunity to end the second period. Down 4-1 late in the middle frame, penalties to Derick Brassard and Dan Girardi gave the Rangers a golden opportunity to get back into the game. Instead, the Rangers kept the Pens from converting on close to 1:30 of 5-on-3 time. Bylsma noted that the team had its fair share of chances, yet he lamented their inability to “capitalize” on those opportunities nonetheless.

Quiet struggles

It’s easy to make too much out of one game, yet the Rangers now have two power-play goals to the Penguins’ one (although shorthanded goals muddy the picture enough that special teams might be considered a draw).

Pittsburgh hasn’t been able to score a power-play goal in four of its five games against the Rangers in the 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs after finding the net with the man advantage in all but one game against Columbus (Pittsburgh went 6-for-29 in six postseason games against the Blue Jackets).

  1. pens87 - May 9, 2014 at 11:29 PM

    Not such a surprise they lost this game to me. Just like in years past, whenever they seem to have a significant lead, whether it be in a game or a series, they always seem to have that “we got this” mentality that comes out and they get lazy, and it obviously hurts them. Tonight you had a NYR team that came out fired up, ready to play, needing to win and it was the Pens task to match their intensity. They did not. Good win for the NYR, they certainly were the better team tonight.

    And the playoff beat goes on.

  2. valoisvipers - May 9, 2014 at 11:56 PM

    Put NisCannon and Martin back together on the first Power Play unit like it was in round one.

  3. pastabelly - May 10, 2014 at 5:23 AM

    James, it’s worth editing your articles before posting them. (5-3 paragraph)

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