The Pittsburgh Penguins were left without both their starting netminder, Marc-Andre Fleury, and their top prospect, Matt Murray, to start off their postseason run this year.
While backup Jeff Zatkoff did admirably in his first game, the team cleared Murray to play earlier this week – so the Thunder Bay, Ontario native will get his first-ever NHL postseason start when the Penguins take on the New York Rangers for game three of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals.
Drafted 83rd overall by the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2012, Murray spent 13 games at the NHL level this year after putting up impressive AHL numbers in both his rookie and sophomore campaigns. In his 13 game stint with Pittsburgh, the 21-year-old put up a 9-2-0 record, posting a .930 save percentage in all situations and recording his first NHL shutout.
Those numbers look just as good as his AHL numbers – Murray was good for a combined 16 shutouts in just 71 games between the 2014-15 and 2015-16 seasons with the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins and never fell below an average .930 save percentage in all situations – but this is his first test; the Penguins and the Rangers will be fighting it out to gain an edge in their first round playoff series, so things could get tough for him.
The Rangers and the Penguins are set to play game three at 7:00 PM EST at Madison Square Garden in Manhattan, New York, where the tied 1-1 series will see one of the two teams gain an edge.