NEW YORK — Evgeni Malkin scored on a deflection in the third overtime and the Pittsburgh Penguins outlasted the New York Rangers, 4-3, in Game 1 of an Eastern Conference quarterfinal series that captivated the league in just the second day of the postseason.
Malkin deflected a wristshot from defenseman John Marino, ending a marathon of a game that feature spectacular performances in net on both sides.
Backup Louis Domingue had to relieve Pittsburgh starter Casey DeSmith in the second overtime, after the latter was injured. He made 48 saves on 51 shots before exiting. Domingue, an NHL journeyman who spent most of the season in the AHL, incredibly made 17 saves en route to the win.
New York’s Igor Shesterkin, who most believe will win the Vezina Trophy this season as the league’s top goaltender, stopped 79 of 83 Pittsburgh shots, yet was tagged with the loss.
The series matches up the second- and third-place teams in the Metropolitan Division. Game 2 is on Thursday at Madison Square Garden.