It was chippy, it was close, and it was a Rangers win, but was it simply a pyrrhic victory? New York managed to grab two points out of hosting the Carolina Hurricanes with a 2-1 win over their Metropolitan Division rival, but there may be more long-term losses than gains from a game like this.
New York’s powerplay connected early as Chris Kreider found twine to pull himself onto level terms with Andy Bathgate for fourth in franchise history. An iconic New York Ranger has gotten himself into a conversation with some of the Ranger legends. It put the Rangers up 1-0 and gave them a lead they desperately needed in a game against such a ferocious opponent.
However, this is where the bad news started to hit the Blueshirts. Adam Fox would be knocked out of the game after a leg-on-leg collision with Hurricanes forward Sebastian Aho. He played the remainder of the first period but was ruled out during the first intermission. If that is serious, the Rangers could be in trouble. But it was far from the only injury concern felt tonight.
Filip Chytil would also be ruled out during the second intermission. An upper-body injury for Chytil meant the Rangers bench was down to 11 with just the 11 forwards and five defensemen. Chytil had been so hot for the Rangers to start the season, so if this is serious and he misses a few games to mess with the chemistry and flow of the roster, it could have some severe impacts on the future of a team that had been so good.
Another injury concern is that of Igor Shesterkin. He was banged up after Braden Schneider and Jesperi Kotkaniemi collided in the low slot and slid into the Russian netminder. He continued but didn’t look like himself for a considerable period. He was still a massive factor in the end of the game, getting a toe on a shot to prevent Martin Necas’ effort to tie the game up in the third, but again, another cause for concern.
In the aforementioned third period, the Rangers were able to get the winner as captain Jacob Trouba went flying down the boards before firing a perfect pass to Will Cuylle. Cuylle made no mistake, and the Blueshirts survived the strong charge in the late third period from Carolina. It was a challenging game, but the Rangers managed to make the most out of it.