Rangers Roundup: Playoff clinching scenarios, home ice advantage, and more

The New York Rangers were rock solid on home ice as they took down the Pittsburgh Penguins 3-0.

ESPN analysts can bemoan the fact that Sidney Crosby was a late scratch due to a non-covid related illness all they want, but they’re ignoring the fact that the Rangers beat the Penguins two times leading up to Thursday’s victory with him in the lineup.

With the win, the Rangers are now six points up on the the Penguins for second-place in the Metro and stay two points behind the Carolina Hurricanes for first-place.

New York Rangers magic number and playoff clinching scenarios

The Rangers need any combination of two points lost or gained over the Islanders to clinch their first playoff spot since 2016-17.

Tonight, the New York Islanders will face the Carolina Hurricanes on the road. If they lose in regulation, the Rangers will have secured a playoff berth. Should the Islanders win or lose in OT or a shootout, the Blueshirts will then have an opportunity to do it themselves on Saturday night when they host the Ottawa Senators.

Rangers primed for home ice advantage in round 1

new york rangers playoffs
Apr 7, 2022; New York, New York, USA; Pittsburgh Penguins right wing Anthony Angello (57) and New York Rangers defenseman K’Andre Miller (79) are separated by linesman Kory Nagy (97) during the third period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

While making the playoffs is a virtual lock given the team has 10 games remaining to get it done, we can now look to home ice scenarios for at least round one.

According to PlayoffStatus.com, the Rangers need a combination of 8 points gained or lost over the Penguins to secure second place in the Metro.

The Blueshirts also have a shot at first in the Division but do not control their destiny. Any combination of 9 points the Hurricanes gain or the Rangers lose will give the Metro to Carolina.

MoneyPuck has the odds of the Rangers taking the Metro at 9.1%. Their chances to secure second place are at 68.6%. After that, they don’t give the Rangers much chance of getting out of the first round with a 27% chance to the Penguins 67.6%.

I don’t know, maybe their calculations didn’t watch the last three times these two teams faced each other.

NHL Scores and Highlights

Recap all the NHL Action at The Daily Goal Horn every morning! Auston Matthews set single-season goal record in the Maple Leafs OT win over the Stars. Plus the New York Rangers downed the Penguins as the Hurricanes clinch. Check it all out here.