Originally posted on The Rangers Tribune  |  Last updated 1/19/12

GLENDALE, AZ - JANUARY 30: Head coach John Tortorella of the New York Rangers during the NHL game against the Phoenix Coyotes at Jobing.com Arena on January 30, 2010 in Glendale, Arizona. The Coyotes defeated the Rangers 3-2. (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

John Tortorella couldn't have been happier with what he saw from his team in Tuesday's 3-0 win over the Nashville Predators at Madison Square Garden. And although the coach wouldn't agree to admit that the New York Rangers are "close" to a Stanley Cup, he still has a lot of pride in his club for their ability to bounce-back from failure.

Another ability Torts must be appreciative of is the way the Blueshirts have been able to string together wins this season, and that will be exactly their goal when hosting the Pittsburgh Penguins this evening. There are only three games remaining before the All-Star break, and winning all three would put New York in a very comfortable position going into the hiatus. 

They key to Tuesday's win was how each player, each line, and each unit contributed equally on each and every shift. As of late we've only seen one to two lines creating offense each night, but that was quickly fixed after the disaster in Montreal over the weekend. They will need a similar effort tonight against a Penguins team that has won its last three games. This current win streak, though, came after the Pens dropped four consecutive games that had them out of the playoff picture in the Eastern Conference. They're doing their best to get themselves back in the picture without captain Sidney Crosby. 

Evgeni Malkin, however, has stepped in and filled Sid's shoes quite well, registering seven goals and an assist in his last 6 games. As we all know, Malkin is a very dangerous player that can easily take over a game by himself (just ask the Tampa Bay Lightning). The Rangers defended him very well in their previous two meetings this season, though. 

Speaking of which, the Rangers took wins out of both matches against the Penguins so far this season. The first came, 4-3, back in November here in New York, and the second came more recently, 3-1, on January 6. The Rangers have been incredibly successful against division teams this season. In fact, their only loss to a team within their division came in early October against the Islanders. The Isles, Flyers, Penguins or Devils have not beaten the Blueshirts since then. 

A game like this, against a skilled hockey team, is one in which you look to your top players. Yes, that's you Marian Gaborik and Brad Richards. Both players have been relatively quiet as of late, but they are going to need to bring their A-game for this one against Geno and the Pens. Dan Giradi and Ryan McDonagh are obviously just as important on defense, as is Henrik Lundqvist in goal, but the Rangers need offense tonight, and that's been somewhat hard to come by in recent games. 

With a hot team like the Pens coming in, this is also a tilt I could very well see Henrik Lundqvist stealing for his team. Hank absolutely loves to play against Pittsburgh, so there's a little extra motivation there to be perfect between the pipes for King Henrik. We'll see if there are more "M-V-P" chants coming down from the rafters tonight at MSG like they were on Tuesday. 

Tonight's lineup will remain unchanged, but Tortorella will be rolling with the lines that the team finished with against the Predators. That will leave Brandon Prust on the second line, while Ryan Callahan slides down to the third offensive trio. As Tortorella said, Callahan will compliment Boyle and Fedotenko well, and his previous line was getting a little stale anyway. 

New York Rangers Lineup

Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Dion Lewis signed extension to repay Patriots for giving him chance

Report: South Carolina to start Perry Orth at QB vs. LSU

Mark Giordano: Flames’ effort in opener was 'unacceptable'

LeBron James says he’s in same class as Michael Jordan

Report: Some Texans players have already 'checked out' on coaches

WATCH: Washington scores against USC with trick play


Andre Johnson, Colts down Texans in key division win

Claude Julien: Illegal hit on Patrice Bergeron warrants ‘further consequences’

Foster’s return to game after head injury raises questions

Lions owner Martha Ford is not happy with NFL about blown call on MNF

New details on Duke Williams dismissal

Baylor’s RG3 statue vandalized by TCU fans

Name every QB to play in the NFL at the age of 40

Matt Hasselbeck was ‘on his death bed’ before Texans game

WATCH: Jets' Burmistrov lays dirty hit on Bruins' Bergeron

Report: Cowboys ban filming offense in practice with Patriots next on schedule

Maryland HC Randy Edsall responds on Twitter to firing reports

Pacquiao says he is in talks with Mayweather about rematch

Wisconsin looks to bounce back against Nebraska

Jack Del Rio: Raiders will go after Peyton Manning, want to ‘take him down’

Charles Barkley will guest star on 'The NFL Today'

Week 5 NFL power rankings

Poor Royals grounds crew member gets eaten by tarp

Vin Scully to miss the entire postseason; will return in 2016

Colin Kaepernick’s contract structure protects team from overpaying struggling QB

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Name every QB to play in the NFL at the age of 40

Week 5 NFL power rankings

Vin Scully to miss the entire postseason

Putin celebrates birthday by scoring seven goals in hockey game

"Friday Night Lights" writer calls Chip Kelly a fraud

Women in sports this week: Is this 2015 or 1965?

Three reasons each AL team can win the pennant

Garrett addresses Hardy's comments about Gisele

Five outrageous predictions for NFL Week 5

Rex makes players do push-ups in practice after penalty calls

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Follow Yardbarker