Boy, when you get to the second round of the playoffs, everyone and their brother has a preview for the series. I'm not going to bother with anything in depth. You've heard it all already (blah, blah, blah, goaltending, blah, blah, blah, Avery, blah, blah, blah, offensive firepower). Instead, here are a few fun facts to get you ready for Game 1 on Friday night:
- The Rangers allowed approximately 26 shots per game in the regular season. Against the Devils in the first round? Nearly 29.
- The Pens scored nearly half a goal more per game during the regular season against the Rangers, but both teams were effective at even strength. The Pens had a much more efficient power play.
- Shutting down the Rangers power play will be a key in this series. They clicked at over 23% in the first round.
- Should we wish for Sean Avery to be dumb enough to tick off Sid? We all know that Sid is the last person you'd want to get angry. If I'm Avery, I shift my bulls-eye onto a certain young Russian center...
- Can the Rangers have enough on the blue line to stop both of the big lines for the Pens? The Blueshirts are going to live and die with their young defensemen.
- The Rangers were one of the top teams in the NHL on faceoffs during the regular season at 52.3%. Do I need to tell you where the Pens ranked? I'll give you three guesses and the first two don't count (Answer: Last).
Only one more day to go until the start of Round 2.
Let's Go Pens!