Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Playoffs between the Penguins and the Rangers had a little bit of everything. What ended in a wild 4-3 (3OT) win for the Penguins in game one, the first round series already had a story and that was 3rd string goalie Louis Domingue. Domingue came in game 1 between the first and second overtime in relief of Casey Desmith who suffered a core injury mid-game. Domingue went on to make 17 saves and all was good…the Penguins were up 1-0 in the series and Domingue seemed as if he would be an OK goalie for the Pens until starter Tristan Jarry could make his return.
This all couldn’t be more wrong.
The Pens took a commanding 3-1 series lead over New York, but it most definitely wasn’t due to Domingue’s goaltending performance. In fact, after tonight’s 5-3 loss to the Rangers, Domingue has given up at least 4 goals in every game of the series…which is now going to Game 7 back at Madison Square Garden. The Penguins had 2 glorious opportunities to end the series in games 5 and 6 but failed to do so…largely because of how poor Louis Domingue has been.
With just over a minute left in Game 6 tied 3-3, Domingue gives up what may have been the softest goal of the 2022 NHL Playoffs. And it was because of that goal that the Rangers have knotted the series at 3-3 and have forced a Game 7 back at home.
What was seemingly turning into a feel-good story of Louis Domingue after Game 1 has flipped into the goaltender being the primary reason for the Penguins 3 losses in the first round of the playoffs. If the Penguins are going to have a chance in Game 7 on Sunday, Domingue is going to have to be much better than he been.