Gerard Gallant, coach of the Star Goaltenders, stated that he was proud to be a part of this team. After the first period of Game 3, against the Saturday night was intended to inspire the team and provide some rest for the netminder.
The Rangers lost that game in Pittsburgh 7-4 and are now trailing the Penguins by 2-1 in their Eastern Conference series.
Gallant decided to pull Shesterkin in the second period. The Rangers were down 4-1 in Pittsburgh and their star goalie had stopped 11 out of 15 shots.
“Two of them had lucky bounces. You want to shift momentum. Igor has been amazing — in fact, it's only taken him four-and a-half days to play 10 periods. The coach stated that he thought it was a good opportunity to jumpstart it.
The Rangers responded by scoring three goals in the second half to tie the game. However, Pittsburgh eventually won 7-4 to take a 2-1 lead in the series.
“It was 4-1. It was completely tilted. Sometimes, a goalie change can be enough to ignite a team. Igor was the MVP of the season. We thought we would give him some rest tonight to help spark the team. And it worked,” Gallant explained. BackupMade 19 saves in relief, but gave up a stoppable goal for the Penguins forward At 11:02 in the third period, Pittsburgh took a commanding lead that it would not relinquish.
Gallant and Rangers players disagreed, saying that Game 3's key was not how they won but how they started.
“I don't believe we're playing together. It's something that you shouldn't question, especially at this stage of the season. It's about working smarter, not harder,” Rangers forwardsaid. “It's been a great learning experience for us.” We are in the first round of playoff.
Gallant declared that his message was one of pride after the first period.
Let's get real and be men about it. We're not gonna die. “We're not going to let them play like that against me,” he stated. “We came out and fought back in that hockey game.”
Monday night, the Penguins vs. the Rangers is Game 4 of their Series.