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Five things to know before Game 7

Rangers' Benoit Pouliot, center, celebrates his goal with

Rangers' Benoit Pouliot, center, celebrates his goal with Mats Zuccarello and Anton Stralman during the first period against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Friday, Feb. 7, 2014. Credit: AP / Gene J. Puskar

1. The Penguins stayed in a downtown hotel last night, very unusual. D Paul Martin said it had not happened in his time with the team, although when he was with the Devils, it happened regularly. But it indicates that Dan Bylsma may be concerned and wants to keep team together and focused before the game.

2. Only a handful of Rangers skated and Alain Vigneault won't be speaking until 5 p.m. so we're not totally sure of the exact lineup. Dan Carcillo, Jesper Fast, J.T. Miller, Rapahel Diaz and Justin Falk were on ice with goaltenders Cam Talbot and spare David LeNeveu. So unless AV decides on a late swap of Carcillo for Derek Dorsett, who didn't play in the third period in Game 6, same lineup.

3. The refs are Marc Joannette and Kevin Pollock, same as in Game 6. First time repeat in this series. They called 15 penalties. Joannette also got in the way of Derek Stepan's breakaway in the first period.

4.  The speculation is that the Final won't start until at least Saturday in Boston or Montreal. Game 7 in that series is tomorrow night in Beantown.

5.  Added motivation. Rangers have 11 restricted or unrestricted free agents, including Stralman, Brassard, Zuke, Pouliot, Kreider, Boyle, Dom Moore, John Moore. Number of guys could be playing, or watching, their last game for New York. A good performance by a few of them could help them in re-signing for bigger money. Same goes for Pens, who might be in for a personnel shakeup with a loss. Had trouble with Isles last season, swept by Bruins, barely escaped Columbus in first round.


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