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The Penguins’ Young Defensemen; How They’re Facing Big Games (+)



Jack St. Ivany (left), Ryan Shea (right).

It will be the biggest game in Jack St. Ivany and Ryan Shea’s young careers. The inexperienced defensemen have played a combined 37 NHL games, but they’ve already passed their first crucibles.

Now comes the biggest test and a potential make-or-break moment for the Penguins’ revived playoff hopes. They trail Washington by one point for the wild card and the New York Islanders by three points for third place and essentially must beat the Detroit Red Wings on Thursday night.

The team has been living on the edge for the last three weeks. Any loss could have sunk their playoff hopes. Instead, the team has rallied for points in nine straight, including six wins.

Shea and St. Ivany have been significant cogs in the machine. St. Ivany has played 10 NHL games; perhaps not entirely coincidental, the Penguins turnaround began in his second NHL game.

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