The Rangers and Penguins clash in Steeltown tonight and I think most people expect to see some fireworks. Between Brandon Dubinsky calling Sidney Crosby a dirty player after last their last game, Sid's scoring and the Rangers' recent seven-goal outburst, there will be plenty to watch on the ice. Here are three factors to keep an eye on.
What Will Dubi Do?
After calling out Crosby off the ice, will the two exchange more than words when the action starts? Dubinsky dropped the gloves with Alex Ovechkin on Sunday, so tangling with Crosby would be a tremendous streak of throwing down with the league's two premier players. Crosby has been sticking up for himself this season, fighting the Stars' Matt Niskanen in November, but I'm guessing he'll keep his mittens on tonight. I'm sure the Rangers would love to see the streaking center sent off for five minutes though.
What Will Drury Do?
The Rangers get their captain back after a prolonged absence due to a broken finger. Todd White will be the healthy scratch. According to reports, Drury will skate on a line with Erik Christensen and Sean Avery but it's not certain whether he or Christensen will play center. While he may be a little rusty after missing about two-and-a-half months of playing time, the Pens should bring out the best in Drury. In 39 games against Pittsburgh, he has 34 points.
More Where That Came From?
The seven-goal explosion on Sunday was impressive, but can the Rangers keep it up? The Blueshirts now sit 10th in the NHL with 2.97 goals per game, .3 goals per game better than their scoring rate last season. New York has scored five or more goals six times this season. They hit that mark 14 times in 2009-10 and this season's squad seems much more capable on the offensive end. Whether they can keep it rolling tonight against the defensively steady Pens is another issue.