The Rangers have gotten off to an awful start to the season, winning just one of their first 6 games, not scoring much at even strength and leaking chances and goals through their new and improved defense.
Some people might chalk this up to all of the new faces in the locker room trying to learn the system, figure out their roles and what this team’s identity. But the Rangers have a much bigger problem at hand, and it’s the man behind the bench.
Alain Vigneault has been criticized in the past for his lineup decisions, but his choices this year have been truly baffling, especially when it comes to the defensive pairings. Read the rest of this entry
What a difference a night makes, eh? Just 24 hours after getting absolutely shelled by the Maple Leafs for 5 goals against in the 1st period alone, the rejuvenated Rangers and goaltender Henrik Lundqvist shook it off and turned in a big-time performance, shutting out the visiting Montreal Canadiens, 2-0, in front of a raucous October crowd at Madison Square Garden Sunday night. Lundqvist made 34 saves, several of the spectacular variety, to post his first shutout of the season and a Ranger-record 62nd blanking of his storied NHL career on Broadway. 2nd year D-man Brady Skjei came away with the fortuitous game-winner when his sharp angle pass intended for Michael Grabner caromed off Habs goaltender Carey Price and defenseman Shea Weber late in the first period to give the Blueshirts a lead they never relinquished. Meanwhile, $5.4M man Mika Zibanejad – now 2nd in the NHL in goals (4) and 1st in PPGs (3) – continued his amped-up play as the team’s new #1 center by snapping home a beautiful behind-the-net pass from sophomore linemate Pavel Buchnevich to seal the win in the 3rd period. Read the rest of this entry
Welp, the stick finally hit the proverbial (Ranger) fan as Coach Alain Vigneault and GM Jeff Gorton apparently had enough of their own lip service as well as that spewing from their players ad nauseum. That’s right. None other than discussion-lightning-rod and AHL-banished forward Tanner Glass was recalled from the Hartford Wolfpack yesterday, along with defenseman Steve Kampfer.
Now, say what you want about Glass – and virtually everyone in Rangerland has – the current state of affairs for this team with only a month left to go in the regular season and the trade deadline in the rearview mirror is indisputable:
1) The team’s forte, its scoring prowess, has all but disappeared, case in point they’ve scored fewer than 2 goals per game over the last 9 while only playing wildcard worthy, .500 hockey. Read the rest of this entry
The New York Rangers came into this game knowing that it could be a preview of the first round matchup of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs, but they didn’t play like it was. A lackluster effort, combined with Lundqvist not being on top of his game sent the Rangers off the ice with a 4-1 loss. The Canadiens swept the season series with the win.
After a strong start to the first period, the Canadiens took a 1-0 lead a little over half the period in. Off a faceoff, Shea Weber took a shot that was deflected in front by Adam Clendening. The original shot was going wide, but Clendening accidentally deflected it past Lundqvist.
The Canadiens had a second quality chance with about five minutes left in the opening period. The puck trickled behind Lundqvist and in, but the whistle had already blown, so it stood only at a 1-0 lead. Read the rest of this entry
- New York Rangers (36-18-1, 73 PTS) vs Columbus Blue Jackets (35-14-5, 75 PTS)
- The Rangers scored three unanswered goals to erase a 2-1 deficit against the Colorado Avalanche, securing Henrik Lundqvist’s 400th career win in the process. He became the quickest goalie in NHL history to reach that mark and the first non-Canadian to record 400 wins. Kevin Klein scored twice, Rick Nash scored the game winner and Kevin Hayes scored into the empty net to seal the win. That marked the Rangers’ sixth consecutive win.
- The Rangers won all four games of their homestand, a big accomplishment considering how lackluster they had been at MSG this season. They are now 18-11-1 at home and 18-7-0 on the road.
- Columbus won their last game, a 2-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings. Boone Jenner and Cam Atkinson both scored, and Sergei Bobrovsky stopped 35 of the 36 shots that he faced to secure the win. The Blue Jackets have been a .500 team since their franchise best 16 game win streak, not being able to string many wins together.