Coming into tonight’s game, the New York Rangers were in desperate need of wins and points. Changes in the standings has caused a need for urgency. At the beginning of the game, the team found themselves tied with the Columbus Blue Jackets for third place in the Metropolitan Division. Meanwhile, the Philadelphia Flyers, with a weekend home and home sweep of the Pittsburgh Penguins, occupied second place. A much needed answer to their scoring drought was required tonight, and that answer came.
My first star goes to Derick Brassard. Heading into the game against Ottawa, Brassard was on a scoring drought with line-mate Mats Zuccarello. As mentioned in the pre-game notes, they were a combined one point for the month of March. Tonight, they most certainly improved on this stat. For Brassard, he tallied two goals for three points with a +4 rating. His overall effort tonight earned him first star honors.
My second star goes to Mats Zuccarello. The tough as nails Norwegian also broke through tonight. He assisted on two goals in the game and earned a +4 rating. To go along with his offensive play, he was seen yapping it up with some of the Senators. Not to be taken lightly, Zuccarello has become a force to be reckoned with and an offensive threat to be feared. His uncanny play-making ability is an asset the Rangers have been in need of for some time.
Last but not least, the third star of the game goes to Henrik Lundqvist. Against the Senators, Lundqvist stopped 35 of 39 shots. If you watched the broadcast, Ottawa’s shots were grade A scoring chances. Despite giving up the four goals, the King stood tall in net and was able to keep the Rangers in the game. With tonight’s win, he earned his 302nd win and became the all-time winningest Ranger’s goalie, surpassing Mike Richter. As Sam Rosen quoted in tonight’s broadcast, “He truly is the King!”
My 3 stars: