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This was an unthinkable scenario when New York Rangers goalie Igor Shesterkin finished the regular season with a .935 save percentage, making him the clear front-runner for the Vezina Trophy.

Shesterkin, who will be one of the three finalists announced this week, carried that momentum into the playoffs while stopping 118 of the 124 shots he faced in the first two games for a .952 percentage. But since arriving in Pittsburgh, the 26-year-old has taken a nose dive. In Games 3 and 4 combined, he allowed 10 goals on 48 shots for an unsightly save percentage of .792 as the Rangers fell behind in the series 3-1.

Penguins fans were unsympathetic, raining down chants of “We want Igor!” after he was yanked to begin the third period.

“He’s probably really frustrated,” Rangers coach Gerard Gallant said after Tuesday’s 7-2 loss.

But while Shesterkin was the primary target of the heckling, he was far from the only culprit. The second period featured one breakdown after another, resulting in goals from Mike Matheson, Jake Guentzel, Mark Friedman, Danton Heinen and Jeff Carter.

Pittsburgh Penguins left winger Jake Guentzel scores a goal against New York Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin in the second period of Game 4.

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“He’s just one of us,” Rangers forward Andrew Copp said. “We weren’t playing very good in front of him. It definitely wasn’t on him at all. It’s going to be up to every guy in the room to pull together.”

The Penguins’ goals came in all different varieties — long-range wrist shots, far-post tap-ins, five-hole head-scratchers — with the Rangers surrendering 16 shots on goal and 12 high-danger scoring chances in second period alone, according to Natural Stat Trick.



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