Penguins notebook: Coraopolis' Miller gets shot vs. hometown team
NEW YORK — The New York Rangers made two lineup changes before Game 3 of their second-round Stanley Cup playoff series against the Penguins.
One change pitted a local boy against his hometown NHL club.
Forward J.T. Miller, one of four local players selected in the first three rounds of the 2011 NHL Entry Draft, participated in Game 3 at Madison Square Garden on Monday night after being a healthy scratch in the first two games of the series.
Miller, raised in Coraopolis and the 15th overall pick in 2011, had participated in two postseason games — and recorded two assists — in the first round against the Philadelphia Flyers. He has bounced between the Rangers and their AHL affiliate in Hartford during each of the past two seasons, scoring five goals in 56 career NHL games.
Miller and forward Jesper Fast entered the lineup for the first time in this series. They replaced wingers Daniel Carcillo and Derek Dorsett, both of whom took careless penalties in Game 2.
Miller and Fast are both noted for their speed, something that may have played into the Rangers decision to dress them, given that it was their sixth game in nine days and that the Penguins were considerably faster than New York in Game 2.
The Penguins made no changes to their lineup, scratching winger Tanner Glass for a second consecutive game.
Sid's next nomination
Penguins captain Sidney Crosby is a finalist for the Ted Lindsay Award, given annually to the “most outstanding player” as selected by members of the Players' Association. Crosby is joined by fellow centers Ryan Getzlaf (Anaheim) and Claude Giroux (Philadelphia) as finalists.
Crosby won the Lindsay Award last season and in 2007, when the Lindsay Award was know as the Lester B. Pearson Award.
The Penguins have produced a Lindsay/Pearson Award winner nine times. Jaromir Jagr also won it twice and Mario Lemieux on four occasions. Current center Evgeni Malkin won in 2012, when he also won the Hart Trophy (MVP) as voted on by members of the Professional Hockey Writers' Association.
Crosby, who paced the NHL in regular-season scoring, is a finalist for the Hart Trophy.
Winners for all trophies will be announced at the NHL Awards Show in Las Vegas on June 24.
With a breakaway goal in the second period of Game 3, Penguins winger Jussi Jokinen extended his playoff points streak to seven games. It is a career-best run.
Jokinen has produced at least a point in all but one contest for the Penguins this postseason.
Since joining the Penguins at the 2013 trade deadline, Jokinen has become a go-to point producer. He had 10 points in 14 playoff games with the Penguins before Game 3. Previously, he had only 15 points in 27 career playoff games with Dallas, Tampa Bay and Carolina.
On the board
Defenseman Robert Bortuzzo has played in five career playoff games, and he has finally joined the list of scorers.
His assist on captain Sidney Crosby's second-period goal in Game 3 provided Bortuzzo with his first playoff point. His was the primary helper on the goal that snapped Crosby's career-worst 13 consecutive playoff games without a goal.
Game 5 is scheduled for Consol Energy Center on Friday night. The NHL's official web site lists that the contest will start at 7 p.m.
Tickets are available at Ticketmaster's web site and outlets and the Consol Energy Center box office.
All NHL teams produce openings that are played on arena video boards before players take the ice for the opening faceoff.
The Penguins' opening for Consol Energy Center is set to a remix of Black Sabbath's “War Pigs,” which is played over a montage of big moments from the regular season.
At Madison Square Garden, the song for the Rangers' opening is less obvious, but the narrator offers a reminder of Broadway's star power. Actor Liam Neeson speaks over a montage of highlights from Rangers' squads past and present.
Josh Yohe and Rob Rossi are staff writers for Trib Total Media.
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