Head Writer of the Blue Line Station Adam Herman tweeted last night during the Rangers/Islanders game that watching former Rangers property Al Montoya, playing very well before coming in to MSG, get lit up by the Rangers gave him a sense of happiness. Adam, You’re not the only one.
The New York Rangers were able to defeat the New York Islanders by a score of 6-3 in a game that saw many shifts in momentum, end-to-end action, great goaltending, some chippy plays & fights, and excellent goals. In other words, it was a great hockey game to watch.
Let’s check out what went down…
With this win, the Rangers have won 4 of their last 5 games.
What more can you say about Brandon Prust? He scored his league-tying 5th shorthanded goal (11th goal of the season for him) just 3:47 in to the contest. Steven McDonald Extra Effort award winner? Time to pass the torch Callahan
Henrik Lundqvist gets his 29th win of the season and needed to be steller at times to do so. Hank is 1 victory shy of his 6th consecutive 30 win season. No Rangers goalie has ever accomplished that to start their career.
3 power play goals and 1 shorthanded for the Blueshirts tonight. See how important it is to have your special teams be a threat to score? It can make-or-break games for you.
Since Bryan McCabe arrived on Broadway, the Rangers PP has converted 24% of its chances. It was 17% before. He’s made a difference on the PP and tonight finally cashed in a PPG of his own.
3 points in 2 games for Erik Christensen a.k.a. The Inconsistent One. Think he got the message by sitting a couple games? For the Rangers sake, you hope so. He’s making his linemates Gaborik and Prospal hum at the moment.
Michael Sauer is quickly becoming my favorite player on the team. Not only as he had an underrated rookie season (he leads the Rangers in +/- with a +14) but he has no issues sticking up for his teammates. Plus, I have respect for people that take off their helmets to fight, particularly when they have a visor.
Sean Avery had 3 penalties, 2 of them in the offensive zone, and one of them completely boneheaded and borderline dangerous. So much so that MSG caught Torts dropping a few expletives afterwards. Torts has always said Avery needs to walk a fine line with his style of play. His penalties seemed to have crossed that line. Wouldn’t be surprised if Wolski is back in next game for him.
The Islanders did have their fair share of scoring chances despite being outshot. The Rangers traded too many chances early on and got too careless at the outset of the 2nd period and the opposition capitalized with 2 quick goals.
I’m concerned that Marian Gaborik has only showed up in the Islander games this season. I’m happy he’s the 4th Ranger to crack the 20-goal plateau with his performance last night, joining Brian Boyle, Brandon Dubinsky, and Ryan Callahan. At the same, he needs to play like he did tonight every single game. Using your legs is a wonderful concept, isn’t it?
Where the Rangers Stand:
With their win, the Rangers have moved up to 7th in the Eastern Conference with 78 points with 11 games remaining, jumping over the 8th place Buffalo Sabres who sit with 76 points with 12 games to go. Carolina (74 points) and the white-hot New Jersey Devils (70 points) are still on the playoff bubble with 12 and 13 games to go, respectively.
Your Blueshirts continue their short home stand Friday night at 7:00 PM in an Original-Six Matchup against the 6th place Montreal Canadiens.