by Patrick Hoffman on 12/04/10 at 12:52 AM ET
It certainly was not the most exciting New York Rangers vs. New York Islanders game but it was a 2-0 shutout win for the Blueshirts and a sweep of the home-and-home series.
For Henrik Lundqvist, it was his fourth shutout of the season and his third career against the Islanders. He did not need to be terrific but he was able to get the job done and that’s all that should matter when it comes to Lundqvist and the Rangers.
The team got a great power play goal from defenseman Marc Staal who took a nice pass from Derek Stepan and rifled one over the shoulder of Islanders’ goaltender Dwayne Roloson. Brian Boyle added his 11th (no…I am not kidding) of the season when he put one into the empty net with less than a minute to go in the game.
Other than that, there wasn’t much to this game. Yes, the Rangers dominated a good portion of the second period and had some power play opportunities but they were not able to generate a lot of quality scoring chances. Luckily, they were playing against the Islanders so with a solid Henrik and defense in tact, not a lot of goals should be needed.
One positive thing to look at is the team is 7-0 in back-to-back games this season. If they lost the night before, they have a great bounce back game the following night and in terms of this particular back-to-back games, they responded well defensively after a sub-par performance last night.
The Blueshirts will be back in action on Sunday evening when they take on the Ottawa Senators at Madison Square Garden at 5 p.m. As most of you are probably aware, the Senators have been struggling as of late so it will be a good opportunity for the Blueshirts to extend their winning streak to three games and pick up two more points.
With that said, however, the team should be careful of falling into a trap game where they play to the level of the opponent rather than go out and control the game.
If the team has really established a new identity this season, that should not be a problem come Sunday night.
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Patrick has a tremendous passion for hockey. Besides covering the Rangers and the NHL for Kukla's Korner, you can also find Patrick's work over at Sportsnet.ca, The Red Light District Hockey Blog, NHL Home Ice, and Liam Maguire's Ultimate Hockey web site.
Prior to writing for the above mentioned outlets, you could find Patrick's musings at hockey web sites/outlets such as TheHockeyNews.com, TheFourthPeriod.com, Spector's Hockey, Hokeja Vestnesis, Blueshirt Bulletin, SNYRangersBlog.com and many more.
For questions, comments and hip checks, feel free to e-mail Patrick at email@example.com.