Pittsburgh Penguins: 2017-18 Metropolitan Division Preview

PITTSBURGH, PA - APRIL 02: Scott Wilson
PITTSBURGH, PA - APRIL 02: Scott Wilson /
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New York Rangers

NEW YORK, NY – APRIL 09: Jean-Sabastien Dea
NEW YORK, NY – APRIL 09: Jean-Sabastien Dea /

The New York Rangers didn’t have the playoff run they wanted and were sent packing by the Ottawa Senators before the Eastern Conference Finals. New York has made some significant offseason moves this season, though, and is planning to come back with a vengeance.

The Rangers sent Derek Stepan and Antti Raanta packing and bought out Dan Girardi in an effort to boost their defensive weak spots. After picking up some new defenseman, notably Kevin Shattenkirk, and grabbing two first-round picks in 2017 entry draft, the Rangers are looking for a big season.

The Penguins topped the Rangers twice in regulation and once in a shootout in the five times they faced them last season. In Penguins victories, the Rangers’ defense failed them and allowed the Pens’ offense to get to the net and beat Henrik Lundqvist. The Rangers’ wins came in moments of strong offense and reliable defense.

With the Rangers’ improved defense this season, the Penguins will need to account for that when facing the team. The Rangers will put up a fight and these matchups will be exciting, as usual, and be a match of skill and performance.

If the Pens keep defense strong and push their offense through the Rangers’ D and to the net, they’ll be able to get on top of the team.