Pittsburgh Penguins head coach Mike Sullivan didn’t think his team gave too much respect to the point of passing up shots against New York Rangers goalie and Vezina Trophy favorite Igor Shesterkin. Top-line winger and sharpshooter Jake Guentzel did think the Penguins were too deferential to the netminder.
The New York Rangers beat the Penguins 3-2 Tuesday night at PPG Paints Arena.
The Penguins had only 10 shots on the scoreboard after two periods. Scorers later adjusted the total to a whopping 12. Did the Penguins give too much respect?
“Yeah, I think so. I think. We know he’s a good goaltender, but from our end, we’ve just got to put pucks on net. You never know what happens,” Guentzel said. “I mean, both of our goals tonight, we got guys in front of that if it’s a tip or a screen. We’ve got to take something from this game, and we’ve got to make sure we’re putting pucks on net and having net-front traffic and getting to the front of the net.”
But the shot selection, or lack of shots, was only part of the Penguins’ problems against the Rangers. Some of the problems are correctable.
Some of the problems are the new reality for the team and troublesome things they will have to adjust for in the probable Round One matchup against those Rangers. Tuesday night gave us a great look into the near future.