So the Blueshirts haven’t been doing so hot of late. If you’re on the outside looking into Rangerstown, you would think our season is going downhill. We had two really bad losses over the weekend to the Oilers and Maple Leafs and had lost 4 out of our last 5 games, getting only 5 points in that span. We were 6-6-2 heading into last night against the Penguins who had won 7 in a row. It had massacre written all over it. The Blueshirts even held one of those closed door meeting that you always hear about in sports after the loss to the Oilers. Ya know, when a team starts losing they lock the door to the locker room, don’t let the coaches or reporters in and then hash out their problems. Well usually that doesn’t work and I always think of it as a media driven event, but then I watched the game last night.
We came out with a passion, putting pressure on the Penguins time after time. I don’t recall even seeing the puck leave the Penguins zone. We came out like a team on a mission. Zuucs set the tone with a quick snapper off a face-off. Then St. Louis joined the party only a minute and a half later with a goal taken from point blank range, and Klein added one towards the end of the 1st with a slap shot from the point. Domination from the outset. Derek Brassard added one in th second to make in 4-0 and of course Rick Nash put one in to cap off the blowout. 5-0 Rangers. The King gets the shutout.
Now it looks like we may just have lady momentum on our side. We just got Stepan back on Saturday, and he looks like he’s shaking off the rust pretty quickly with two assists last night. Dan Boyle will probably be returning either tomorrow against the Avalanche, or on Saturday against the Penguins. The McDonough injury is going to hurt us for a while, but getting Boyle back will be a huge addition to the Power Play, as he’s our best offensive Defenseman.
In other Rangers News:
- Vigneault said he’s likely going to put Boyle on the 5 on 5 unit and 1st power play unit, but keep his minutes around or below 15 to ease him back
- The Rangers are likely to keep Duclair up, because once they send him down they cannot bring him back up like with other players. Vigneault loves Duclair though, saying “in my mind, there is a skill set there that I haven’t seen a young player have in a long time. Sometimes for a guy like that, playing every night is not the right thing to do. When we sat him out for a couple of games the last time he came back and was real strong those first few games. It gives him time to practice and work with the coaches, some individual work with Arnie. It’s a long season, might not play tomorrow but is day to day and still part of this team right now.”
- With Rick Nash’s goal last night vs. the Pens, he’s now tied for the NHL lead with Tyler Seguin of the Stars with 12.
- The Rangers recalled Jesper Fast from Hartford on Monday. Vigneault said about fast “I have always felt very comfortable with him, he is a very smart two-way player who always gives the best of his effort. He is a young player who is growing and improving his skill set and very smart on the ice and his line was effective.”
Next 3 games:
11/13- vs. Avalanche
11/15- @ Penguins
11/17- vs. Lightning