New York Rangers 1 Detroit Red Wings 0
The Rangers came out firing early and looked hungry to win. Jimmy Howard came up with some huge saves as did Henrik Lundqvist. Chris Kreider had a very near miss early in the period, as did Michael Del Zotto. Del Zotto had Howard beat with a huge slap shot from the point that just barely missed sliding under Howard’s left leg pad. The Rangers took the first penalty as Derek Stepan was called for hooking at 6:48. The penalty kill was flawless. Carl Hagelin and Brian Boyle are just amazing together. Who cares if Hagelin stinks on the power play?! The second penalty of the game was assessed at 12:11 to Kreider who tripped Drew Miller right in front of the referee. It was a frustration move for a missed call earlier. Ryan Callahan and Dominic Moore had some great chances while short hand. Kreider also took a slash across his hands and seemed to be in discomfort. Dan Girardi also had a moment that caused him to exit the ice slowly. Also a huge move in the game was the MONSTER slap shot that cracked Howard’s helmet and required him to get his back up from the bench. The period ended scoreless with the Rangers out shooting the Red Wings 18 to 15. Also of note, Kreider and John Moore showed they were not afraid to stand their ground when the pushing and shoving started. Lundqvist got in on the shoving when he moved some of the Red Wings out of his crease.
Rick Nash was tripped HARD on his way to the net 21 seconds into the period. If it was any other team the referees would have called a penalty shot. The Rangers got their first power play but were unable to convert on the opportunity. Stralman had a huge shot which bounced off Howard’s blocker, despite him being very far out of the net. Boyle and Dan Carcillo showed some great chemistry building with strong passes and intuitive plays. Mats Zuccarello and Pouliot had a two on one rush that resulted in a couple good tries but the puck just wouldn’t get in the net. After a face off to Howard’s right side, Hagelin was absolutely robbed on an open goal shot. Girardi and Ryan McDonagh showed what a top defensive pairing should look like. Kreider and Nash teamed up for a shot that completely missed because Nash fanned on it. Derek Stepan had a couple chances but couldn’t buy a goal with that contract that he held out to get. Both goalies shared amazing save sequences and proved they were appropriate choices for their respective Olympic teams. The line of Brassard, Zuccarello, and Pouliot had an amazing, albeit long, shift that left the Red Wings winded and dragging behind. There were several chances for them on goal and as soon as they had a line change, the Red Wings had their turn. The Rangers got their second power play of the game at 14:43 from a hooking call drawn by Zuccarello. As the teams entered the dressing rooms for the second intermission, the score remained locked at zero with the Rangers out shooting the Red Wings 17 to 10.
Both teams again came out ready to play and taking early shots. Zuccarello was playing so hard on the puck, nothing could get him away. Even Daniel Carcillo had his turn to nearly miss the inside of the net. The teams moved back and forth taking their shots at both ends. Not many stoppages kept the puck moving. Around 13;27 Lundqvist made an amazing save to send the game into the TV time out as he jumped into the air and kept the puck on his check with no rebound. Hagelin used his body well and kept his space in the crease, he even stuffed Howard into his own goal. Zuccarello maintained his pressure on the puck and battled on the boards hard. The third period definitely had the most board work of the three periods. With under seven minutes to go Zuccarello found the back of the net in a huge way! Pouliot had a hard hit on Smith behind the net and it rattled him enough to make his trip off the ice slow motion. The Red Wings pulled Howard to the bench with 1:10 remaining for the extra attacker. As the puck cleared the zone the foot race was called as an icing on the Rangers despite Zuccarello being one step ahead in the race. With 44.5 seconds remaining the Red Wings hit the post and Lundqvist comes up with the mister save as the puck creeps toward the goal line. After play resumed the Red Wings were whistled for a hand pass with 20 seconds remaining and the puck was moved to the neutral zone for a face off. The Red Wings could not get the puck in and Lundqvist gets his third shut out of the season!!!! The shots were even at 13 on the period, but the Rangers out shot the Red Wings 48-38 in the game.
3- Jimmy Howard
2- Mats Zuccarello
1- Henrik Lundqvist
The Rangers head north to face the Ottawa Senators on Saturday 18 January at 2:00pm.