Rangers End 2014 with a Win

Five different Rangers scored goals as the Blueshirts finished up 2014 with a 5-2 win over the Panthers, the team’s 20th win of the season.

Chris Kreider got the offense going at the 16:42 mark of the first period with his 6th goal of the season. Derrick Brassard scored 89 seconds into the second period to make it 2-0, and Ryan McDonagh‘s power play goal at 14:28, a laser from the blue line, made it 3-0.

Florida cut it to 3-1 at 16:38 when Tomas Fleischmann put a wrist shot past Henrik Lundqvist. And Jimmy Hayes‘ power play goal early in the third period cut the margin to one.

Martin St. Louis made it 4-2 on a goal that looked as if had been kicked in or had deflected off a couple of skates. The referees reviewed the play and the goal stood. Dominic Moore‘s 2nd goal of the season, a ut-back after a St. Louis shot was stopped, at 15:35, closed out the scoring.

The Rangers [20-11-4] are back in the ice Saturday night, when they host the Buffalo Sabres

Win Streak Snapped as Rangers Fall to Dallas

After scoring two goals in the first period Monday night, things looked good for the Rangers, but the Blueshirts couldn’t put another goal past Kari Lehtonen, and wound up losing to the Stars, 3-2, snapping their eight-game winning streak.

Antoine Roussel‘s goal, just 54 seconds into the second period broke a 2-all tie, and proved to be the game-winner. An initial shot by Ryan Garbutt took an odd bounce off the end boards and Roussel put the rebound past Henrik Lundqvist for the goal.

New York got goals from J.T. Miller (on a nice pass from Mats Zuccarello) and Kevin Hayes (his 5th) in the first period.

Lundqvist made 24 saves in the loss, including one jaw-droppingly good one on a point-blank shot by Alex Goligoski early in the third.

After pulling Lundqvist for a sixth attacker in the game’s final 90 seconds, Rick Nash had the best chance to score, but his shot with 0:54 to play was stopped by Lehtonen and no Ranger was near the net for the rebound.

The Rangers are back in action Wednesday night against the Panthers.




Stepan’s Hat Trick Paces Rangers Over Devils

Derek Stepan scored three different ways – a shorthanded goal, a power play goal, and an empty netter – to lead the Rangers to a 3-1 win over the New Jersey Devils Saturday night at The Garden. It was Stepan’s third career hat trick and, more importantly, extended New York’s win streak to eight games, the team’s longest since the 1974-75 season.

Stephan got the Blueshirts on the board late in the first period. With Dominic Moore in the penalty box on a holding penalty, Stepan scored at the 18:14 mark, unassisted, to make it 1-0 New York.

Stepan and the Rangers made it 2-0 at the 7:38 mark of the second period, assisted by Martin St. Louis and Dan Boyle. 10:23 into the period, Steve Bernier scored for the Devils to make it 2-1 and keep things interesting going into the third period.

But the Devils could not score the equalizer. Stefan’s empty-netter with 0:55 to play closed out the scoring.

Henrik Lundqvist made 19 saves in the win; it was his 600th game for the Rangers. He has a franchise record 324 wins.

Next up for the Rangers [19-10-4, 42 pts]: a game Monday night in Dallas against the Stars.


Rangers Beat Capitals for Seventh Straight Win

Rick Nash and Martin St. Louis each scored twice as the Rangers beat Washington 4-2, extending their winning streak to seven, and moving the team into third place in the NHL’s Metropolitan Division.

Henrik Lundqvist made 30 saves, including 19 in a frenetic third period, for the win. He was stellar during the opening minutes of that final period, stopping four shots in one memorable flurry.

Nash got the Blueshirts on the board at the 3:32 mark of the first when he was credited with a goal; Mats Zuccarello‘s shot grazed Nash’s leg and got past Washington goalie Braden Holtby, giving New York a 1-0 lead.

They made it 2-0 when St. Louis scored a power play goal 63 seconds into the second period.

Nash scored his 22nd of the season at the 4:12 mark of the third, on a wrist shot to Holtby’s stick-side, to make it 3-0, but Washington answered 41 seconds later when Evgeny Kuznetsov scored on a shot from a tough angle to make it 3-1 and keep the Caps’ hopes alive.

Alex Ovechkin scored at the 10:58 mark to make it 3-2, leaving the Blueshirts nine minutes to hold onto a one-goal edge. St. Louis scored another power play goal at 16:12, batting Nash’s deflected shot in, during a two-minute, two-man advantage, to give New York some breathing room.

The Rangers [18-10-4, 40 pts], have three days off for Christmas before hosting the Devils Saturday night at The Garden.

Rangers Host Capitals Tonight

The Rangers and the Capitals, two of the hottest teams in the NHL, square off tonight at The Garden. The Blueshirts [17-10-4] have won six straight games, while the Caps [17-10-6] are 7-0-2 in their last nine games.

The Rangers are coming off a 1-0 shutout win over Carolina Sunday, as Cam Talbot notched his third shutout of the season. The Capitals defeated Ottawa 2-1 at home Monday night.

It’s the first of four games against Washington this season. Last season, the teams split the four meetings.

Henrik Lundqvist [14-7-3, 2.46 GAA] is expected to start in goal for New York, while Braden Holtby [15-7-5, 2.24 GAA] will start for the Capitals.

Rangers Extend Win Streak, Blank Hurricanes

Cam Talbot‘s season statistics are pretty remarkable. The Rangers’ back-up goalie has started seven games, is 3-3-1, and all three of his wins have been shutouts! His three shutouts have him tied for third among all NHL goalies, behind only Pittsburgh’s Marc-Andre Fleury (6), and New York’s own Henrik Lundqvist (5).

Talbot’s latest shutout came Sunday night, making 18 saves as the Blueshirts [17-10-4] blanked the Carolina Hurricanes 1-0, extending their winning streak to six. Ryan McDonagh‘s goal 4:10 into the first period held up, and Talbot and the Blueshirts defense did the rest.


Carolina goalie Anton Khudobin was very good, stopping 30 of 31 shots in the loss.

It was a good weekend for the team; the Rangers defeated the Hurricanes Saturday night in Raleigh 3-2 in a shootout. Carolina [9-22-4] lost for the 8th time in nine games.

The Rangers can make it seven wins in a row Tuesday night at The Garden when they host the Washington Capitals.


Rangers Rally, Beat Hurricanes in Shootout

Kevin Klein scored the tying goal with three minutes to play, and Mats Zuccarello and Henrik Lundqvist came up big in the shootout, as the Rangers edged the Carolina Hurricanes 3-2 in Raleigh Saturday night. The win extended the Blueshirts’ winning streak to five games.

The Rangers [16-10-4] outshot the Hurricanes 34-20 for the game and controlled the action throughout, but it wasn’t until the third period that the team got on the scoreboard.

Trailing 1-0 after two periods, J.T. Miller tied the game for the Rangers at the 4:01 mark of the third, with a power play goal off a perfect pass from Zuccarello, but the Canes tied it 26 seconds later on Jeff Skinner‘s backhand dribbler that got past Lundqvist. That set the stage for Klein, who scored with 2:23 to play, putting life back in the Blueshirts. It was Klein’s 7th goal of the season.

After a scoreless five minute overtime, Zuccarello scored to start the shootout, on a nifty shot to Cam Ward‘s stick-side. No one else managed to score, and Lundqvist stoned Chris Terry with a great glove save on the game’s final shot to seal the win.

The two teams face off again Sunday night, wrapping up the weekend home-and-home with a game at The Garden.



Brassard Returns as Rangers Face Hurricanes

Derick Brassard, who has missed the last two games with the mumps, will be back on the ice tonight as the Rangers face the Hurricanes in Raleigh. The Blueshirts [15-10-4, 34 pts] have won four straight games, and six of the last eight. Carolina [9-19-3, 21 pts] have lost 14 of their last 17.

Rick Nash [20 goals, 13 assists] is riding an 11-game point scoring streak, tops in the NHL this season. The team’s #1 line will once again be Nash, Brassard, and Mats Zuccarello.

It’s the first of two games against Carolina this weekend; the two teams play at The Garden Sunday night.


Rangers Beat Flames, Extend Win Streak To Four

Rick Nash scored twice, his 19th and 20th goals of the season, to lead the Rangers to a 5-2 win over the Flames in Calgary. It was New York’s third win in four nights, and their 4th straight won overall, as the team improved its record to 15-10-4 [34 pts].

Nash’s unassisted goal midway through the first period made it 1-0 Blueshirts. Then Chris Kreider snapped a long scoring slump when he pushed a loose puck in the crease past Flames goalie Karri Ramo with just :08 left in the period to make it 2-0.

Nash scored again, at the 3:06 mark of the second period, on a shorthanded goal, with assists by Derek Stepan and Dan Girardi. Nash now has an 11-game point streak.

Stephan followed that up with a pretty wraparound goal at 11:15 to make it 4-0, and sending Ramo to the bench for the Flames.

Carl Hagelin scored an empty-netter in the third for the team’s 5th goal, as the Rangers scored just about every way possible [even strength, power play, shorthanded, empty netter; missing only a penalty shot and shootout goal on the Bingo card].

Henrik Lundqvist has been oh-so-good on the Western road trip and Tuesday night was no different. He made 29 saves to pick up his 13th win. Though his two best friends on the night were the crossbar and defenseman Kevin Klein, who swatted away two loose pucks in the crease.

The Rangers head back east and finish up the four-game road trip at Carolina Saturday night. They come back to The Garden Sunday night, also against the Hurricanes.

Rangers Blank Oilers 2-0

Dan Girardi scored early, and Henrik Lundqvist the the Rangers defense made it hold up, as the Blueshirts blanked the Oilers 2-0 Sunday night in Edmonton. The win gave New York a 2-0 start to their four-game road trip, and improved their record to 14-10-4 (32 pts).

Girardi got the Rangers on the board at the 16:04 mark of the first period, thanks to some excellent passing from Rick Nash and Mats Zuccarello; Girardi actually appeared to be passing to Zuccarello, who was moving back toward the net, but Girardi’s pass was deflected in off the skate of Edmonton defender Mark Arcobello and Girardi was credited with his second goal of the season.

Zuccarello nearly got a goal of his own in the second period. He had Edmonton goalie Ben Scrivens down and tried to lift the puck over him and into the net, but his shot was deflected by Oilers defensemen Mark Fayne. Scrivens would deny Ryan McDonagh later in the second with a great pad save.

Carl Hagelin‘s empty-netter made the final margin 2-0.

Lundqvist was only called upon to make 16 saves, but was sharp when he needed to be, and recorded his fifth shutout of the season.

The Blueshirts were without Derick Brassard, who missed the game with the mumps, which seems to be spreading throughout the NHL’s best these days.

The Oilers (7-19-5) have lost four in a row and 15 of 16 overall.

The Blueshirts are back on the ice Tuesday night on Calgary against the Flames.