Rangers-Ryane Clowe: All of what the Rangers need from Ryane Clowe was on display during his Blueshirts debut Wednesday night. From the punishing hits and relentless work on the forecheck, to the two goals---one at even strength and another on the power play, to the smart defensive play which bailed out Henrik Lundqvist in the third period, Clowe gave a tour-de-force performance against the Penguins. Clowe has said repeatedly the past two days that he feels his game has been coming for some time now, and clearly he found it all on Wednesday. On and off the ice Clowe is a natural leader and would seem to be a perfect fit in the Rangers dressing room. Knowing what a character player he is, and what a big-game performer he has been throughout his career, plus the fact that he is playing for a new contract this summer, one would expect an extremely strong finish from Clowe, and a nice return on investment for the Blueshirts.
Penguins-Pascal Dupuis: The ex-Ranger has been a thorn in his former club's side in all four meetings so far this season. Dupuis scored Pittsburgh's lone goal Wednesday at The Garden and now has three goals and four points vs. the Rangers this year. Though it seems like he is always dogging the Blueshirts, the truth is that Dupuis has only 11 goals in 40 lifetime matches against the Rangers. This season Dupuis has scored 18 goals---seventh most in the league, and his +21 plus/minus rating is also seventh best in the NHL. The 18 goals he has scored this season is already the third highest single-season total of his career, and is just seven shy of his career-best of 25 set a year ago. Dupuis is also red-hot, having scored 11 goals in his last 15 games.