Kukla's Korner

Goal Line Report

Rangers’ Offense Steps Up in Big Way in 5-2 Win Over The Flyers

Coming into the game ranked 29th in the league in goals scored, the New York Rangers went out and put up a five spot in a 5-2 win over the Philadelphia Flyers in Philadelphia.

Tonight's offensive output is something that both the Rangers' organization and its fans have been clamoring for for the last few weeks. The team was able to create good scoring chances and when they got them, the Rangers were able beat Flyers' struggling netminder Ilya Bryzgalov.

For starters, Rangers' forward Brad Richards had his best game of the season. He worked hard, he forechecked, he got into open spaces and by doing all of that, Richards was able to collect a goal and assist. With the two points, Richards now has 800 career points.

Secondly, Rangers' power forward Rick Nash dominated the Flyers tonight. The big man scored two goals (the second one was the 300th of his career) and added an assist for three points while also being a magician with the puck and making the Flyers' defense look bad.

A stick tap should also go to the play of Derek Stepan. Stepan, who has been one of the team's most consistent forwards this season, had four points on the night with a goal and three assists. With his four point output tonight, Stepan now has 23 points on the season.

Rangers' head coach John Tortorella, who secured his 400th career victory tonight, looked like a genius in putting the line of Nash, Stepan and Carl Hagelin together. The line battled for pucks, went hard to the net, and more importantly, produced as they combined for eight points on the night.

The team also got another solid effort from netminder Henrik Lundqvist. Lundqvist stopped 32 of 34 shots and picked-up his 14th win of the season.

With the win, the Rangers remain in the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference with 35 points. Unfortunately, the New York Islanders won their game tonight over the Washington Capitals so each team now has the same number of points.

The Rangers will be back in action on Thursday night in Ottawa when they take on a very hard-working and resiliant hockey club in the Ottawa Senators. As of this writing, the Senators are fith in the conference with 42 points.

If the Rangers' offense can stay hot on Thursday night, the team can go into a very tough building on Saturday night in Montreal against the Canadiens with 37 points and chance to win their third straight game.

As Tortorella would always say, however, the Rangers must take it one game at a time and for now, enjoy the offensive output they had tonight in Philadelphia. 

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About Goal Line Report

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 patrickhoffman3530@gmail.com.