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Dawn of P-O: Penguins Lines, Preview, How to Watch vs. Rangers

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Pittsburgh Penguins game New York Rangers

Game 5 of the Pittsburgh Penguins (2-2) short 56-game season will most likely feature the NHL debut of the top Penguins defenseman prospect P-O Joseph against the New York Rangers (1-2-0) on Friday night at PPG Paints Arena. The Penguins recalled Joseph from the taxi squad Friday morning, and he is one of six defensemen on the NHL roster.

It seems a good bet that Joseph will go. The Penguins lines are also a little bit of a mystery as Kasperi Kapanen figures to skate with the fourth line, but will head coach Mike Sullivan loosen his leash with a few more than 10 minutes?

The Penguins beat the Washington Capitals twice this week to push aside angst and doubt after an 0-2 start.

The team will have a revamped blue line as left-side blueliners Marcus Pettersson, and Juuso Riikola joined fellow LHD Mike Matheson on the injury list. Pettersson will be out week-to-week with an upper-body injury after Washington forward T.J. Oshie blindsided him at center ice.

The Riikola injury is longer term, just as Matheson’s injury is also longer term.

Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan will start Tristan Jarry in the net. Jarry didn’t play in the two-game set against Washington after getting pulled in the first period of the season’s second game.

“He’s had a couple of real good practices. We believe in him. We know he’s a very capable goalie,” Sullivan said. “He had an opportunity to have a couple of real good practices and just get his mindset where it needs to be and be ready to stop the puck.”

Jarry was otherwise pounded in three-plus periods to start the season against Philadelphia. His GAA is 7.75, and his save percentage is .729. Jarry allowed nine goals on 31 shots, but he was left to fend against undefended shooters within feet of the goal.

Igor Shesterkin will go for New York. The 25-year-old first-year starter is 1-0-1 with a .902 save percentage and a 3.09 GAA.

The game will also feature a tribute to former assistant coach Jacques Martin in the first TV timeout. Former Penguins defenseman (trigger warning) Jack Johnson is also expected to be in the lineup.

Penguins Betting Odds

PHN is 2-2 on our Pittsburgh Penguins betting recommendations. We correctly predicted the Penguins on the top side, but the one-goal differential didn’t cover.

This is a tough game to handicap because no one quite knows what the Penguins blue line will be like. However, the over/under is 6.5. We love the OVER (-105) — this won’t be a low scoring game. $10 pays $19.52.

If you’re curious about Penguins betting, our friends at BetMGM will match your deposit up to $500. CLICK HERE to get started. If you open an account, send us a screenshot of your new deposit, and we’ll give you a free PHN+ subscription. Email nationalhockeynow@gmail.com

LWCRW
Jake GuentzelSidney CrosbyBryan Rust
Jared McCannJeff CarterKasperi Kapanen
Jason Zucker Frederick GaudreauEvan Rodrigues
Zach Aston-Reese Teddy BluegerBrandon Tanev
LDRD
Brian DumoulinKris Letang
Mike MathesonCody Ceci
Marcus PetterssonJohn Marino
LWCRW
Chris KreiderMika ZibanejadPavel Buchnevich
Artemi PanarinRyan StromeColin Blackwell
Alexis Lafreniere Filip ChytilKappo Kaako
Philip Di GiuseppiKevin RooneyVitali Kravstov
Ryan LindgrenAdam Fox
K'Andre MillerJacob Trouba
Libor Hajek Brendan Smith
Game Notes

*The Penguins have been outscored 10-5 in the first period this season and 5-1 in the third period.

*With his overtime winner on Tuesday, Sidney Crosby became the Pittsburgh Penguins leading scorer (3g, 2a).

*Evgeni Malkin scored his first goal of the season with a power-play goal on Tuesday versus Washington. He is now one of just four active and 53 players in NHL history to record 150 or more power-play goals.

*Teddy Blueger’s shorthanded goal on Tuesday was just the third 5v3 shorthanded goal in Penguins history (Mario Lemieux vs. LAK, Feb. 13, 1988; Matt Cooke vs. PHI, Feb. 18, 2012).

*Penguins captain Sidney Crosby is looking to face-off against 2020 first-overall draft pick Alexis Lafreniere for the first time tonight. Crosby (2005) and Lafreniere (2020) are both first overall picks, and both played their junior hockey with the QMJHL’s Rimouski Oceanic.

*Artemi Panarin – 13 GP, 9-7-16 – Panarin has tallied a point in 10 of 13 career games against the Penguins, and he has posted six multi-point games.

*The average age of a player on the Rangers’ active roster this season is 25.5 years old, which is the youngest in the NHL

Scouts List

Vegas Golden Knights

Minnesota Wild

Anaheim Ducks

Detroit Red Wings (AGM) 2x in a row

Seattle Kraken

Florida Panthers

How to Watch

TV: AT&T SportsNet, NHL Network

Radio: 105.9 The X

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Pittsburgh Hockey Now Editor-in-Chief, formerly 93.7 The Fan, Sportsnet Hockey Tonight, NHL Home Ice. Catch Dan tweeting @theDanKingerski and the official @pghhockeynow account.

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