This game truly demonstrated the good, the bad, and the downright ugly of the New York Rangers. Trail 3-0 and 4-1, tie the game at 4 and then win the game in the shootout. None of that is how the coaching staff drew it up, but it is two points in the standings and with a game against Calgary pending tomorrow, all that really matters here is the two points. Moving across Alberta with another win in a fantastic game for the spectators.
Chris Kreider helped himself to two goals in this one to both get the Rangers onto the scoresheet, and then try to give the Rangers momentum again after the Oilers made it 4-1. Kreider has been subject to criticism at certain points this season for whatever reason, but this was the kind of game where we got to see the best of what the strong forward brings to this Blueshirts lineup. He looked like a top-line weapon in this one.
One of the major talking points after a really bad first period was Igor. Do you lift the Russian netminder from his crease with the Calgary Flames waiting for you to arrive in the other part of Alberta tomorrow? Gerard Gallant opted to leave the Russian all-star in his crease and it paid dividends. Igor came up big time in the shootout and through the final 40 minutes to keep the Oilers at bay.
This win leaves New York a point behind the New Jersey Devils for second in the standings. New Jersey still has a game in hand, but the pressure the Rangers are putting on their Hudson River rivals is all you can ask of them right now. If New Jersey does not continue to take all the available points, you’re going to want to see the Blueshirts capitalize and move closer in the standings.
As I have mentioned several times here already, the Rangers’ next game will be against the Calgary Flames tomorrow night. With Igor going tonight, the expectation is that Jaroslav Halak will go for that one, but that is a different game for a different time. If the Rangers and Oilers were to meet in the Stanley Cup Finals this year, it seems it is going to be one heck of a series.