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Need Wins, Penguins Gm 53: Lines, Preview, & Betting vs. Devils

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Pittsburgh Penguins game, New Jersey Devils

The Pittsburgh Penguins (31-13-8) will get a momentary reprieve on their stretch of playoff-caliber opponents for a date with the New Jersey Devils (17-28-5) at PPG Paints Arena. The game will be a rematch of 11 days ago when the Penguins won 4-2 in New Jersey.

The puck drops just after 7 p.m.

While the Penguins have had a few games since then, New Jersey has played only once in the last 11 days, a 6-3 loss to the Tampa Bay Lightning. There’s fresh, and there’s rusty.

The Penguins have lost their last two. After rallying to beat the floundering Philadelphia Flyers, the Penguins flatlined against the Toronto Maple Leafs, and their third period rally wasn’t enough against the Carolina Hurricanes on Sunday.

The Penguins need to begin stacking wins again to win the Metropolitan Division. They currently trail Carolina by four points, and Carolina has two games in hand.

The Penguins are hoping to get more consistent production from their middle-six forwards. Head coach Mike Sullivan dropped Ksperi Kapanen from Malkin line down to the third line with Evan Rodrigues at center. The lines haven’t changed, but the Malkin line has had more chances and been more effective.

Malkin praised his new line while sidestepping any criticism of Kapanen.

“We have lots of good players on our team,” Malkin said. “I focus on my game first of all. When I play my best, I think I give my wingers a chance to score. I hope we play the same line longer. We understand each other more, and the chemistry is better. I hope we help the team to win.”

And head coach Mike Sullivan admitted Kasperi Kapanen is fighting himself.

“(Kapanen) is a guy who cares an awful lot about his own game, and he cares a lot about being a Penguin. So you know, you can probably imagine where he’s at, as far as his own personal headspace. These guys are great athletes and they care a lot and they pride themselves in what they do, but they’re also human beings. And when things don’t go the right way, they go through ups and downs with respect to their or their self-confidence, just like every other person in the world,” Sullivan said.

New Jersey will get No. 1 defenseman Dougie Hamilton back on their blue line, which is a significant upgrade.

Tristan Jarry will start in goal for the Penguins. Jarry’s numbers are rough in the last four games–he’s given up four goals in each, but numbers don’t tell the story of the goalie keeping the Penguins in games in which they were otherwise not as competitive.

Jarry is up to a .922 save percentage and a 2.29 GAA.

Jon Gillies has performed well in his temporary stint as the Devils goalie, even if his stats don’t show it. He is the likely starter for New Jersey. Gillies is 3-8-1 with an .893 and 3.50 GAA.

Pittsburgh Penguins Expected Lines:

LWCRW
Jake GuentzelSidney CrosbyBryan Rust
Jason ZuckerEvgeni MalkinRickard Rakell
Danton HeinenRyan PoehlingKasperi Kapanen
Brock McGinnSam PoulinDrew O'Connor
LDRD
Brian DumoulinKris Letang
Marcus PetterssonJeff Petry
P.O JosephJan Rutta
Goalie
Tristan Jarry
Casey DeSmith

New Jersey Devils Lines per PuckPedia.com:

Sharangovich-Hughes-Mercer

Zacha-Hischier-Bratt

Johnsson-Boqvist-Tatar

Vesey-McLeod-Bastian

Defense:

Siegenthaler-Hamilton

Graves-Severson

Smith-Subban

Goalie:

Jon Gillies

Penguins Betting, Bet $1 win $150 DraftKings Promo

DraftKings is offering a cool promo to ease you into NHL betting. If you lay down a $1 Moneyline bet on or against the Penguins, you win $150. Click here.

The Penguins are heavy favorites and should be. The Devils will have rusty legs, so expect them to lose the first and third periods. So, we consider this one a very good bet. Take the DraftKings promo, bet the Moneyline and get the $150 in bets if the Penguins win.

Moneyline: Penguins (-275), Devils (+230).

Also, let’s have some fun picking the game’s first goal.

Evan Rodrigues is +1600 (16-1), and Jeff Carter is +1500. If you want to go long shot, Brian Boyle is +3000.

Have fun!

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Pittsburgh Penguins Game Notes:

INJURIES: F Drew O’Connor, upper-body (15 consecutive, 18 total), F Jason Zucker, lower-body (14 consecutive, 21 total), G Louis Domingue, lower-body (14 consecutive, 14 total), F Teddy Blueger, upper-body (11 consecutive, 12 total), 2021-22 Total Regular-Season Man-Games Lost: 195

*The Penguins are 11-3-1 in its last 15 games against New Jersey dating back to Feb. 19, 2019, and nine of their last 10 games against the Devils (8-1-1).

*Bryan Rust’s 1.60 points-per-game average at home (14gp, 12-12-24) ranks fourth in the NHL and trails only Kirill Kaprizov (1.75), Max Pacioretty (1.70), and Jonathan Huberdeau (1.65).

*Zach Aston-Reese has 156 hits. He ranks first on the team, and his 3.55 hits-per-game is the highest of his career.

*Since Jan. 1, Letang has 27 points (5-22-27) among defensemen, which is the most among defensemen. His 47 points (6-41-47) in 48 games are fifth-most (tied) among NHL defensemen this season.

How to Watch:

TV: AT&T Sportsnet; Radio: 105.9 The X

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Ted
Ted
9 months ago

Should have taken the over,they can’t play speed game anymore, and the more they press the more mistakes. Let’s get some defensive structure back in the game.

Katz
Katz
9 months ago
Reply to  Ted

Watch a good game. NY vs Washington. It’s 3-0 now snd guess who has zero hits and is playing like a Lady Bing winner? Hmmmm 43 is real quiet , wonder why?