Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Good Triumphs Over Evil as Rangers Blank Penguins 5-0

Okay – first of all – if you missed this one live - then go watch the replay on MSG.  It is one of the best Ranger wins in a long time.  Your New York Rangers took on the red hot Pittsburgh Penguins and their 7 game win streak and basically dismantled Crosby & Company as completely as you could ever hope to see.

On the heels of a depressing and lifeless 3-1 loss to Edmonton, and after a closed-door players only meeting - the Rangers, despite still missing the injured McDonagh and Boyle, responded with their most complete game of the year. 

The Rangers skated, they hustled, they attacked, they defended, and when the ice chips cleared they had beaten the hated aquatic birds 5-0.  And, as my Dad used to say – the game was not as close as the score would indicate.  The Blueshirts had a goal disallowed with a bogus goaltender interference call – and Marc-Andre Fluery actually made several spectacular saves – otherwise the Rangers could easily have tallied a few more. 

So many standout performances – but let’s start at the back and work forward:

King Me!  That was Henrik Lundqvist’s 53rd Ranger shutout win.  The Penguins definitely had their looks and their chances – but Hank stood tall – or on his head – or whatever the situation called for and stopped every puck that came his way.  Crosby, Malkin and the rest launched 33 shots, but Hank was perfect and that’s your puck-game right there (Editor – “puckgame”?) (Dave Pucks – well, it's not a "ballgame" - you know what I mean).  Although – truth be told – one shot did slip by the King…

They Call Me Mister Glass:  … and Tanner Glass made an awesome save of his own.  With the score 0-0 and Hank fooled by a rising deflection, the puck trickled through the Ranger Goalie and was headed for the back of the net – until Tanner swooped in and sticked it aside just as it reached the goal line.
Fine Mister Klein:  Kevin drilled in a goal from the blue line and now has all three of the Rangers defenseman goals this year – and defended well all game.

Shortie for the Tall Guy - Nash –notched his league leading 12th goal of the year – a shorthander off a beautiful – almost too casual - feed from Derek Stepan.  And it’s fitting pay-it-forward because Rick had two assists earlier, most notably passing up a great opportunity from point blank range to slide a perfect pass to….

Marty St. Louis who calmly slid it into the net for a Ranger goal. 

And – reunited with Stepan (2 assists)Mats Zuccarello notched a goal and is starting to score again after a slow start.

Throw in a tally from Brassard and we get the 5 goal explosion that was your New York Rangers this evening.

7-6-2 on the year now and I’ll take it.  We’ve seen some good and some bad – but my overall impression is – the defense will improve as we get our people back.  But this year’s Rangers – unlike last year’s – have a real ability to put that puck in the net in bunches.  We finally have the Rick Nash we thought we were getting.  Marty St. Louis has plenty left in the tank.  We have two really good lines – the league’s best goaltender (in my opinion anyway).  And one hell of a coach if you ask me – smart – calm – and effective.

So – at this moment anyway – life is looking good for the New York Rangers – who just played their best game of the season – with hopefully more to come.  Too pumped to sleep – but I’ll give it a try.  Dave Pucks over and out!

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