by Patrick Hoffman on 03/18/09 at 11:10 AM ET
Last night’s game was the kind of game that the New York Rangers may have lost under Tom Renney. However, it was a much different outcome for the Blueshirts under new guy John Tortorella, who overcame some bad bounces and bad goals allowed to beat the Montreal Canadiens 4-3 in a shootout at the Bell Centre.
Yes, I know that the team needs to continue to learn how to win games in regulation but let’s face it - they need all the points they can get and last night’s two points put them in sixth place in the ever-increasing tight Eastern Conference.
Nik Antropov continues to show the Blueshirts that he was worth getting at the deadline as he added another goal in regulation while also putting one in in the skills competition. He’s a big guy who has soft hands and a powerful wrist shot and is still working towards being a more consistent player with each passing game.
It was also nice to finally see Chris Drury come through in the clutch as he scored the game-winning shootout goal. He may be piling on the assists as of late but this team needs him to score big goals like he did with the Buffalo Sabres and the Colorado Avalanche.
It was disturbing to see Rangers’ netminder Henrik Lundqvist allow a soft goal to tie the game and not be at his best in the shootout. However, at the same time, he did make 26 saves in regulation and did a good enough job to pick up his 32nd win of the season in an extremely tough building.
Since the team doesn’t play again till Saturday night at Madison Square Garden, they will certainly be watching the scoreboard, focusing on teams such as the Canadiens, Carolina Hurricanes, and Florida Panthers, all teams that are within striking distance of the Blueshirts.
No matter how you look at it, two points is two points and for now, the Rangers are in good position to clinch the playoffs for the fourth consecutive season.
Filed in: | Goal Line Report | Permalink
Tags: buffalo+sabres, carolina+hurricanes, chris+drury, colorado+avalanche, florida+panthers, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, nik+antropov, tom+renney
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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 firstname.lastname@example.org.