by Patrick Hoffman on 01/07/12 at 12:45 AM ET
It was not pretty but the New York Rangers managed to find a way to win a hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins by a score of 3-1.
The number one reason why the Blueshirts were able to win this game was the play of their goaltender Henrik Lundqvist. Lundqvist was outstanding in making 37 saves on 38 shots. When the team lacked energy and the defense was not there to help him, Lundqvist did his usual to step up and provide the goaltending that they needed in order to win the game.
Rangers’ forward Brandon Dubinsky had himself another strong game. “Dubi” picked-up a shorthanded goal in the second period off a great feed from Ryan Callahan and also picked up an assist on Brad Richards’s goal in the first period.
The team also got a solid performance from defenseman Ryan McDonagh. McDonagh logged over 26 minutes in ice time and did a great job of blocking shots, clearing the crease, breaking up passes and playing within himself, something he has done all season long for the Blueshirts.
With the win, the Blueshirts have now won four straight and have 56 points, which is still good for first in the Eastern Conference. The team is also now 9-2 in their last 11 games and have the best record in the NHL.
Not many predicted that the team would be this good but they had their reasons. With that said, the Rangers have been one of the most consistent teams in the league this year because they work hard, never give up, stick to their identity and believe in themselves.
The Rangers will be back in action on Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden to take on the Phoenix Coyotes (11th in the Western Conference…19-17-5 record).
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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.