by Patrick Hoffman on 04/16/09 at 12:00 AM ET
Without their captain in the lineup, the New York Rangers went out and defeated the Washington Capitals by a score of 4-3 at the Verizon Center. They did it with timely goal scoring, great defense in the last few minutes, solid goaltending and a good power play (I’m not kidding).
Chris Drury skated in the warm-ups and realized that he couldn’t go and in the first few minutes of the game, it didn’t look like the Blueshirts were ready to go as they took a penalty 18 seconds into the game. However, the team killed it off and settled down into a barn-burner of a game with the Caps.
The Rangers got great performances from Scott Gomez (1 goal and 2 assists for 3 points), Nik Antropov (1 goal and 1 assist for 2 points), Markus Naslund (1 goal and 1 assist for 2 points…needs to stay out of the penalty box though) Brandon Dubinsky (game-winning goal) and goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, who stopped 32 of 35 shots, 13 of which came off the stick of Alex Ovechkin.
As has been noted by Ranger/hockey pundits and analysts, the Blueshirts were not going to have trouble scoring on up-and-down Caps’ netminder Jose Theodore. It was going to be their defense that would be put to the test due to the Caps’ high-powered offense. However, the team was able to escape allowing three goals (two of which came on the power play) and keeping Ovechkin (2 assists) off the board.
The team even had success on the power play as both Antropov and Naslund cashed in with the man advantage. The club’s power play was obviously their greatest weakness during the regular season but if they can start clicking on it now, this team has a chance to make some noise throughout the playoffs.
Obviously, there is lots of hockey left to be played in this series but if you’re a Ranger fan, you have to be more than satisfied with the way things turned out in Game one.
Filed in: | Goal Line Report | Permalink
Tags: alex+ovechkin, brandon+dubinsky, chris+drury, henrik+lundqvist, jose+theodore, markus+naslund, new+york+rangers, nik+antropov, scott+gomez, verizon+center, washington+capitals
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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.