Rangers sweep home-and-home against Flyers; Fast scores first NHL goal
The New York Rangers (11-8-4) were able to win their second game in two games, with both wins coming against the struggling Philadelphia Flyers (8-12-3).
Chris Kreider was out of the lineup due to a death in the family. Dan Boyle was scratched with flu-like symptoms, and was replaced by John Moore. Tanner Glass is still out of the lineup, and was diagnosed with the mumps.
The Flyers made it interesting in the second period, but the Rangers ran away with it in the end, putting up 5 goals in the game, one being an empty netter.
With Chris Kreider out, the fourth line received a boost with the addition of the recently recalled JT Miller. The fourth line also happened to be one of the best lines, with Miller and Jesper Fast both scoring their first goals of the season.
Derick Brassard was the man of the night, scoring the first goal of the game on the power play and giving the Rangers the lead in the third period. Brassard has continued to step up in the top line center role and has consistently managed to put up points, now with 19 (8-11-19) this year.
The Flyers were plagued by penalties, totaling eight minutes spent in the box today and allowing the Rangers to score on the power play. There also was not much sustained offense, as the Flyers only had 11 shots on goal in the first two periods.
Ray Emery was solid in net for the Flyers, making 30 saves on 34 shots and keeping Philadelphia in the game for most of the game. Emery’s record fell to 4-3-1.
Lundqvist did not have much work in net early, and allowed two goals on the first 11 shots. The Flyers did not score in the third period, and Henrik finished with 21 saves, improving his record to 9-6-3. It wasn’t Lundqvist’s best night, but he did enough for the Rangers to win.
The first period started with another early penalty, with Claude Giroux getting a four minute double minor for high sticking.
After a missed shot by Derek Stepan, he was able to control the puck and get it to Nash behind the net. Nash passed it to Brassard in front for a quick wrister, beating Ray Emery on the man advantage and giving the Rangers an early lead.
Nash’s assist gave him 25 points (16-9-25) this season, and Stepan’s assist brought his point-streak to six games.
New York continued to dominate early, not allowing the Flyers to get a shot on net for the first 7:30 of the game. But the Flyers picked up their play during the last half of the period, and were able to tie the game shortly after that.
Nicklas Grossmann’s scored the equalizer, after some blown coverage led to him being wide open in front for a wrister. Grossmann’s second goal of the season tied the game at one, despite the Flyers being outshot 15-7 in the first period.
In the second period, Philadelphia continued to put pressure on the Rangers, controlling play for the first 10 minutes. On the power play, Jakub Voracek put the Flyers ahead after the Blueshirts struggled to get the puck out of the zone. Voracek’s ninth goal was assisted by Brayden Schenn and Claude Giroux.
With the Rangers in need of some offense, it was the fourth line that broke through, and Jesper Fast scored his first goal of his NHL career to tie the game at two.
A shot attempt from Kevin Klein was blocked, and Fast got to it quickly. After battling through the defenders, he surprised Emery with a shot that went over his shoulder and into the back of the net. The assists went to JT Miller and Kevin Klein.
Fast’s goal was timely, and swung the momentum in favor of the Rangers. After the goal, the Blueshirts had a flurry of chances but Emery was strong, and New York finished the period with 14 shots to the Flyers’ 4.
The Rangers maintained control in the third, and Derick Brassard would score again to give the Rangers the lead. On an odd man rush, Kevin Hayes slid the puck to Brassard, who fired a wrist shot top shelf, giving New York a 3-2 lead and giving Brassard his eighth goal of the season.
In his first game since being recalled, JT Miller scored his first goal of the season, a beautiful wrap-around past an over-aggressive Ray Emery. Jesper Fast had the primary assist and Kevin Klein picked up his second assist of the night.
Lee Stempniak would finish off the Flyers with an empty netter, sealing the win for New York.
Except for the last half of the first period and the start of the second, the Rangers dominated the Flyers again. Two wins in two days is a great thing for a team trying to establish consistency, even if it is against a struggling team. The win gives the Rangers four wins in their last five games.
Kevin Klein was the catalyst on defense, blocking three shots and recording seven hits in 18:26 of ice time. Klein also had two assists, giving him eight points this season.
Derick Brassard continues to impress. Just a year after solidifying the Rangers third line, he is now centering the top line for New York, and doing a good job at it. Brassard scored twice, giving him eight goals this season and 19 points total, an impressive leap in performance from last season.
JT Miller was impressive in his first start since being recalled from the Wolf Pack. Miller played the wing position, his natural position, and flourished, scoring a fantastic wraparound goal in the third period to give New York a two goal lead. When Kreider returns to the team, Miller’s presence could make an interesting situation with the bottom two lines.
Jesper Fast had a fantastic game. Earlier today, Captain Ryan McDonagh noted how he has been contributing, and the vote of confidence must have helped Jesper Fast today. He played a strong defense game, like he usually does, and scored a goal that motivated the bench and tied the game at two. Fast was deserving of the Broadway hat today.
The Rangers next game is Monday night, where they will face the Tampa Bay Lightning at Madison Square Garden for the final time this season. The Rangers have dropped both games against the Lightning this season and the Rangers will be looking to keep the consistency going with a win.
1) Derick Brassard – 2 Goals, 3 Hits, 20:23 TOT
2) Jesper Fast – 1 Goal, 1 Assist
3) JT Miller – 1 Goal, 1 Assist
Posted on November 30, 2014, in Game Recaps and tagged Alain Vigneault, Anthony Duclair, Carl Hagelin, Chris Kreider, Claude Giroux, Dan Girardi, Derek Stepan, Derick Brassard, Dominic Moore, Henrik Lundqvist, Jakub Voracek, Jesper Fast, John Moore, JT Miller, Kevin Hayes, Kevin Klein, King Henrik, Madison Square Garden, Marc Staal, Martin St. Louis, Mats Zuccarello, Matt Hunwick, Montreal Canadiens, MSG, New York Rangers, NHL, NHL 2014-2015 Season, NY Rangers, NYR, Philadelphia Flyers, Rangers Nation, Rangerstown, Rick Nash, Ryan Callahan, Ryan McDonagh, Steven Stamkos, Tampa Bay Lightning, Tanner Glass, The Duke, The Ranger Zone. Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.