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The Perfect Road Game

That is exactly what the New York Rangers played this afternoon in their 4-1 win over the Washington Capitals.

The Blueshirts got timely goal scoring, played solid on defense, got a great game from back-up netminder Martin Biron, and did a good job at killing penalties when they needed it the most. With the exception of the first ten minutes of the game in which they looked like they were asleep, this was by far and away the best Rangers' road game of the season.

It was nice to see Rangers' forward Brian Boyle come through with his first goal of the season in the second period on a delayed penalty. On the goal, he showed patience with the puck, got into good position and showed why guys should not be afraid to put the puck on net. Hopefully, this goal will get him going.

The club also got another excellent game from Rick Nash. Nash used his size, helped create two goals and was responsible in his own end.

Another big factor in this tilt was the play of Biron. Biron was sharp in making 28 saves and did his job by keeping his team in the game, giving his club a chance to win, and stopping the pucks that he should stop.

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  Tags: brad+richards, brian+boyle, buffalo+sabres, carolina+hurricanes, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, ottawa+senators, pittsburgh+penguins, rick+nash, toronto+maple+leafs, washington+capitals, winnipeg+jets

Figuring Out New Ways to Win

More than a quarter past the season already, this is something that the New York Rangers need to do if they want to get into the postseason.

Tonight, the Blueshirts are in Montreal to take on the Canadiens. These two clubs met on Tuesday night in what was more of a chess match than a hockey game and the Canadiens escaped Madison Square Garden with a 3-1 victory.

There is no doubt that every point matters in this kind of season but the Rangers need to try and find ways to get two rather than one. While the team was able to get one point in their Thursday night 3-2 shootout loss to the Senators, it really did not help then standings wise.

Coming into tonight's tilt, the team is eighth in the East with 18 points, but just one point ahead of the Tampa Bay Lightning and Philadelphia Flyers. The Rangers are also 5-3-2 in their last 10 and while that is not terrible, it is not the play of a Stanley Cup contender.

With all of this in mind, Rangers' head coach John Tortorella must find different ways to get this hockey team going. Sure, they can get solid defense and excellent goaltending on a nightly basis but right now, it is not winning hockey games on a consistent basis.

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  Tags: christian+thomas, john+tortorella, martin+biron, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, ottawa+senators, philadelphia+flyers, tampa+bay+lightning

Seven Minutes of Poor Play leads to 4-3 Shootout loss for Blueshirts

Had it not been for a terrible span of seven minutes in the second period, the New York Rangers may have never lost 4-3 to the New York Islanders in a shootout at Madison Square Garden.

After going up 2-0 in the first period, the Rangers stopped skating and allowed the Islanders to skate all over them for the first seven minutes. The result was three quick goals and the loss of a lead that the team should have built on.

The Rangers were able to tie the game at three when Carl Hagelin knocked a loose puck in the crease past Islanders' netminder Evgeni Nabokov. Unfortunately for the Blueshirts, the team was unable to get another one and the Islanders' first two shooters in the shootout did all the rest to spoil the Rangers' three game winning streak.

As always, the Rangers' power play struggled tonight. Yes, the team did manage to get one goal with the man advantage but other than that, they struggled to get pucks on the net, move the puck cleanly and even find good lanes to get a shot on Nabokov.

As I mentioned in my blog a little while ago, Brad Richards was just one of the reasons why the team could not do much on the man advantage tonight. His poor play on the power play actually caused team head coach John Tortorella to bench him for much of the third period. 

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  Tags: brad+boyes, brad+richards, carl+hagelin, evgeni+nabokov, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, martin+biron, new+york+islanders, new+york+rangers, washington+capitals

Rangers Looking to be More Than Solid at The Rock

The last time the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils squared off, the Devils scored in overtime to advance to the Stanley Cup Final, where they would lose in six games to the Los Angeles Kings.

Fast forward close to nine months later and things are very different. Both teams are in the midst of a 48-game schedule, both teams have new faces and both clubs are not quite sure where they fit in just yet in the ever competitive Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference and are meeting tonight at the Prudential Center.

The Blueshirts are coming off a 3-2 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning in what was one of their best performances of the season. The team played tight defense, got the scoring they needed and got a big game out of their back-up goaltender Martin Biron.

The team will look to do the same tonight, this time with different faces in the lineup. For starters, Rangers' highly-touted prospect J.T. Miller was called up from the Connecticut Whale and will more than likely utilize him in their upcoming games.  

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  Tags: connecticut+whale, darroll+powe, j.t.+miller, los+angeles+kings, martin+biron, mike+rupp, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, nick+palmieri, tampa+bay+lightning

Stability and Consistency Lead Rangers to Victory

When it comes to winning a hockey game in the NHL, teams must be consistent in their play and have some stability whether it is with their offense, defense or goaltending.

Tonight against the Tampa Bay Lightning, the New York Rangers got the stability in goal they needed from back-up Martin Biron (30 saves) and consistently put pucks on net in a 3-2 victory in Tampa Bay for their first road victory of the season.. Considering that the Lightning were the best team in the Eastern Conference coming into this game and were putting pucks in the net left and right, it was an impressive victory for the Blueshirts.

In his first start of the season, Biron was exactly what he needed to be for the Rangers. He made the big saves when he needed to, slowed down the play when his team needed a breather and have the Rangers the kind of goaltending they needed against a very good Lightning hockey club.

On offense, Rangers' forward Derek Stepan scored his first goal of the season to knot the game up at 1-1 in the second period. For Stepan, it was a much needed goal as he had not scored since Game 6 against the Ottawa Senators in last year's first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs.

The team also got an absolutely great goal from Rick Nash. On the play, Nash used his size and terrific puck-handling abilities to blow by Lightning defenseman Victor Hedman and beat Lightning netminder Mathieu Garon to give the team a 2-1 lead.

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  Tags: adam+henrique, carl+hagelin, derek+stepan, martin+biron, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, ottawa+senators, rick+nash, tampa+bay+lightning, taylor+pyatt

Not Putting It Together

Through the first two games of the season, this seems to be the problem for the New York Rangers.

After losing to the Boston Bruins last night at the TD Garden by a score of 3-1, the Blueshirts were once again a step behind, this time tonight against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Madison Square Garden. The Blueshirts lost their second straight game to go 0-2 after losing by a score of 6-3.

Once Rangers' captain Ryan Callahan tied the score up at 1-1 with a power play goal in the first period, things seemed to fall apart for the Blueshirts. They allowed two more goals in the first period to go down 3-1 and then at one point in the third period, the team was down 5-1 before Taylor Pyatt put one in for the Rangers to make it 5-2.

Meanwhile, for the second straight game, the Penguins got the offense they needed to win a hockey game. The team got goals from James Neal (2), Tyler Kennedy, Matt Niskanen, Pascal Dupuis and Kris Letang while getting good enough goaltending from Tomas Vokoun (30 saves on 33 shots). 

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  Tags: boston+bruins, henrik+lundqvist, james+neal, kris+letang, martin+biron, matt+niskanen, new+york+rangers, pascal+dupuis, pittsburgh+penguins, rick+nash, ryan+callahan, taylor+pyatt, tomas+vokoun, tyler+kennedy

Happy to be Back

Well folks, it is finally over.

With a new CBA agreement in place, we can now look forward to what should be a very interesting New York Rangers' season. With a shortened season and the Rangers known for being a streaky team, a good start out of the gate could end up leading to something special for the Blueshirts.

What's interesting is that after the 1993-94 season when the Rangers won the Cup, the New Jersey Devils ended up winning the their first Cup in franchise history by sweeping the Detroit Red Wings. With the Devils getting to the Stanley Cup Final last season, may be the Blueshirts will return the favor and get back to the Final for the first time since 1994.

Anyways, now is not the time to look far ahead. For the Rangers, they will more than likely use head coach John Tortorella's approach of one game at a time and will make sure they play well in all areas of the game and are consistent game in and game out.

With a grueling schedule on tap, it might be hard for the Rangers to do all those things but if one thing is certain, it is that they have a roster capable of getting the team to the next level. The addition of Rick Nash up front should also help the team put more pucks in the net both on even strength and in an area they struggled the most with last season, the power play.

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  Tags: 2012+nhl+cba+agreement, detroit+red+wings, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, martin+biron, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, rick+nash

The Value of Martin Biron

When it comes to hockey, there is no doubt that goaltending is a key cog in the machine that makes up a hockey team.

For the New York Rangers, the main cog between the pipes is Henrik Lundqvist. Lundqvist is everything a team could want in a starting netminder as he is consistent, plays and wins a lot of games, makes key saves at the right time, gets his team into the postseason and more importantly, makes them a contender in what is a very talented Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference.

With that said, it is important that the machine has a backup cog in case something goes wrong with the main one or if it needs to be replaced so that it can rest. In the case of the Blueshirts, this particular cog is back-up goaltender Martin Biron.

Since joining the Blueshirts in the 2010-11 season, Biron has been a netminder that the Rangers can rely on to give them a chance to win when he is between the pipes. In his two seasons on Broadway, Biron has won 20 games, picked-up two shutouts and has posted impressive goals against averages of 2.13 and 2.46, respectively.

While the numbers clearly show that Biron is more than just your average back-up goaltender, there is a lot more to him than just the stats. For starters, Biron's experience as a starting goaltender for both the Buffalo Sabres and Philadelphia Flyers has helped him in his transition to being a full-time back-up NHL goaltender.

This is important because Biron knows how to prepare for games. He knows what it takes to start in games and he knows what he needs to do to be ready. When between the pipes for the Rangers these last two years, his preparation has shown with his steady play when team head coach John Tortorella puts him in net.

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  Tags: atlantic+division, buffalo+sabres, eastern+conference, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers

Biron Back With the Blueshirts

The New York Rangers made a smart move by re-signing their backup netminder Martin Biron to a 2-year deal.

Larry Brooks ‏@NYP_Brooksie
NYR have completed vital bit of business. Post has learned that Biron has re-upped for 2 years, $2.6 total.

There is no doubt that Biron has been a valuable asset to the Blueshirts since joining the team in the 2010-11 season. Biron has showed the team and its brass that he can be relied on to provide starter Henrik Lundqvist with relief, can win some hockey games and be a great supporting guy to both Lundqvist and the rest of the Rangers’ hockey club.

In 21 games this past season, Biron went 12-6-2 with a 2.46 goals against average, a .904 save percentage and 2 shutouts. While he did allow some questionable goals this season, those numbers are good enough to make him one of the best backup goaltenders in the NHL.

What are your thoughts?

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  Tags: henrik+lundqvist, martin+biron, new+york+rangers

Update/Rangers Set to take on the Penguins

UPDATE: According to Pat Leonard of the Daily News, Martin Biron will be in goal tonight for the Blueshirts:

Same #NYR lineup, Martin Biron in net vs #Pens. So Mike Rupp stays in.

FROM EARLIER

While the New York Rangers have already clinched the top spot in both the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference, the team still has two games left against two solid hockey clubs.

Tonight, the Blueshirts will be in Pittsburgh to take on Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins. While the game has little significance for both clubs, it should still end up being a good hockey game between two clubs that are looking to get their game in order before the Stanley Cup Playoffs begin next week.

It will be interesting to see who the Rangers go with in goal as starting netminder Henrik Lundqvist has a bruised right arm after hurting it against the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday night. After the game, he said he had trouble gripping the stick so if I am the Blueshirts, I would not hesitate to start back-up goaltender Martin Biron tonight.

Against the Penguins tonight, the Rangers should focus on shutting down both Crosby and Evgeni Malkin. Going into the playoffs, the Penguins will more than likely be the top offensive hockey club and if the Blueshirts can find a way to shut them down tonight, it will certainly be a confidence boost heading into the postseason.

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  Tags: evgeni+malkin, henrik+lundqvist, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, pittsburgh+penguins, sidney+crosby

Gaborik-Richards-Hagelin Line Gets it Done in Win Over Hurricanes

When it comes to the National Hockey League, there have been many get trios when it comes to offensive lines.

While they may not be considered great right now, the New York Rangers’ line of Marian Gaborik, Brad Richards, and Carl Hagelin sure got it done for their hockey club tonight in the team’s 4-2 win over the Carolina Hurricanes at Madison Square Garden.

The trio combined for a terrific 9 points. Richards, who looks like a brand new player out there, had two goals and three assists. After tonight’s tilt, Richards has 23 goals and 30 assists for 53 points, good for second on the club.

Gaborik, who continues to contribute to the Rangers’ offense on a nightly basis, had a goal and two assists. With his three point performance, Gaborik now has 34 goals (3rd in the league) and 30 assists for 64 points, good for tops on the team.

Hagelin, the rookie, is showing just what kind of offensive ability he has by playing with two of the team’s top two forwards. Hagelin picked up a goal and two assists and now has 32 points (13 goals and 20 assists).

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  Tags: brad+richards, cam+ward, carl+hagelin, carolina+hurricanes, john+tortorella, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, pittsburgh+penguins

What is Going on with Biron and the Blueshirts?

This is something that has to be asked after the New York Rangers lost to the Ottawa Senators tonight by a score of 4-1 .

Tonight, Rangers’ back-up goaltender Martin Biron allowed three goals, two on four shots in the first period, and did not look too comfortable out there. While I said earlier that it was smart to start Biron against the Senators tonight rather than the Chicago Blackhawks tonight, I now wonder why the team did not start Henrik Lundqvist in tonight’s inter-conference game and have Biron go in the non-conference game.

Anyways, in his last six games, Biron has lost two games in regulation, lost two games in overtime and has allowed 18 goals. While he did manage to win two games in this six game span (Carolina Hurricanes and Tampa Bay Lightning), he has looked shaky, allowed a few soft goals and has lost games that the Rangers probably could have won with Lundqvist between the pipes.

This is not to take anything away from what Biron has accomplished this season. He is 11-4-2 and has pretty decent stats for a back-up goaltender in the NHL. With that said, it would be nice if he could play a bit better so that may be team head coach John Tortorella can have the option of resting Lundqvist a few more games before the team enters the postseason.

While Biron was not great against the Senators tonight, neither was the rest of the Rangers’ hockey club. Ryan Callahan, who scored his 26th goal of the season tonight in the first period, played well as did Artem Anisimov. Unfortunately for the Rangers, no one else on the team followed suit.

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  Tags: artem+anisimov, carolina+hurricanes, chicago+blackhawks, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, ottawa+senators, ryan+callahan, tampa+bay+lightning

Biron to Start Tonight/Other line-up Updates

According to Andrew Gross, the New York Rangers’ beat writer/blogger for The Record and Ranger Rants blog, the Blueshirts have elected to go with Martin Biron in goal tonight to face the Ottawa Senators.

This sounds like the right decision considering that the Rangers take on the Chicago Blackhawks tomorrow night. Remember, the Blackhawks scorched Biron and the Rangers in their previous meeting by a score of 4-2 so putting starting netminder Henrik Lundqvist in sounds like the right thing to do.

Gross also said that Rangers’ forward Brandon Dubinsky will not be in the lineup tonight due to sinus issues he is experiencing that could impact his skating. Dubinsky also said he still has some pain in his hand from the fight he had with New Jersey Devils’ forward David Clarkson on Tuesday night at the Prudential Center:

Brandon Dubinsky will not be in the lineup tonight against the Senators as he tells the media he is still having sinus issues that could affect his skating. Dubinsky said his hand hurts as well after fighting the Devils’ Ryan Carter on Tuesday. Dubinsky was holding nasal spray and also appeared to have stitches on his nose. Considering the Rangers do not have a morning skate tomorrow in Chicago, it’s very likely he’ll also miss the Blackhawks’ game.

Dubinsky also reported he’s been having trouble sleeping as a result of his injured nose.

 

 

 

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  Tags: andrew+gross, brandon+dubinsky, chicago+blackhawks, david+clarkson, henrik+lundqvist, martin+biron, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, ottawa+senators, ranger+rants, the+record

Three In a Row for the Blueshirts

With starting netminder Henrik Lundqvist given the night off, and team captain Ryan Callahan, out day-to-day with a bruised foot, back-up goaltender Martin Biron needed to give the New York Rangers a strong start against the Carolina Hurricanes, especially considering the way he had played in his last few starts.

As it turned out, Biron came up big for the Blueshirts in a 3-2 victory in Carolina. After allowing the Hurricanes’ only goal of the game in the second period, Biron really shut the door and played a solid game in making 21 saves.

For Biron, it was his 11th win of the season. In 17 games, Biron is now 11-3-2 and continues to show team head coach John Tortorella that it is okay to rest Lundqvist.

The team also got a solid performance out of the Marian Gaborik, Derek Stepan and Artem Anisimov line. Gaborik picked-up his 30th goal of the season as well as an assist for points 54 and 55 on the season. Stepan also had a strong game in adding two assists while Anisimov scored his 12th goal of the season to tie the game at 1-1 in the second period.

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  Tags: artem+anisimov, boston+bruins, brandon+dubinsky, carolina+hurricanes, daniel+girardi, derek+stepan, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, marc+staal, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, pittsburgh+penguins, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh, steven+stamkos, tampa+bay+lightning

Disappointing Shootout Loss to the Islanders

While it may not have been in regulation and while the team got a point, it was essentially another loss for the New York Rangers 4-3 in a shootout to the New York Islanders.

This was simply a game that the Rangers should always have. Yes, the Islanders always bring their best effort against the Rangers but in the grand scheme of things, the Blueshirts need to win these games against the lower seeded New York Islanders.

While Rangers’ netminder Martin Biron was not terrible, he certainly was not great. This is the third straight start in which Biron has allowed three goals or more and is the second straight start in which Biron failed to help get the team two points.

Obviously, there is no real reason to panic given that the team is currently atop both the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference.

Looking at the positives, it was nice to see the Rangers’ power play go 2/5 for tonight. The team got power play goals from Marc Staal and Derek Stepan while Marian Gaboirk got the goal in between.

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  Tags: buffalo+sabres, derek+stepan, evgeni+nabokov, marc+staal, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+york+islanders, new+york+rangers

Wake-Up Call

That is exactly what the New York Rangers got last night in their 4-2 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks.

Yesterday, I blogged that the Rangers had to get off to a good start and put pressure on the Blackhawks early, especially since the Blackhawks were coming into the game having lost nine straight. Unfortunately for the Blueshirts, the exact opposite happened.

The team allowed four goals in the first period as the Blackhawks jumped on the Rangers early and often. In fact, the Blackhawks’ four goals came in the first 9:38 of the first period, including a penalty shot goal by Blackhawks’ captain Jonathan Toews.

What surprised many was that Rangers’ head coach John Tortorella kept goaltender Martin Biron in the game despite the bad first period. Fortunately for the Rangers, Biron was sharp the rest of the way and ended up with 18 saves on 22 shots.

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  Tags: carl+hagelin, chicago+blackhawks, columbus+blue+jackets, corey+crawford, john+tortorella, marc+staal, martin+biron, new+york+rangers

Lundqvist Dominates Bruins in 3-0 Shutout Win

There should no reason to be surprised anymore when it comes to New York Rangers’ goaltender Henrik Lundqvist.

Last night, the “King” made 42 saves in a 3-0 shutout victory over the Boston Bruins. It was Lundqvist’s seventh shutout of the league, which puts him first in the league.

Lundqvist’s statistics are simply terrific when it comes to NHL netminders. The soon to be 30-year-old netminder now has 27 wins (4th in the league), a 1.77 goals against average (2nd in the league), a .941 save percentage (1st in the league) and as mentioned above, 7 shutouts (1st in the league).

It may have been a 3-0 win but Lundqvist was busy all night in Beantown. In the third period alone, Lundqvist made 18 saves and in the period before that, stopped 14 shots. He was simply terrific and was the main reason why the Blueshirts won the game.

The team got goals from Ryan Callahan (a power play goal…his 23rd of the season), Ryan McDonagh (his second goal in as many games), and Artem Anisimov (2 goals in his last three games). The club also did a good job of clearing rebounds, blocking shots and working hard in front of their netminder.

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  Tags: artem+anisimov, boston+bruins, chicago+blackhawks, henrik+lundqvist, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh

Blueshirts Looking for Offense

While the New York Rangers may have gotten screwed out of picking up at least a point against the New Jersey Devils in their 1-0 loss on Tuesday night, it still does not change the fact that this team is currently having trouble scoring goals.

Yes, the team put four in on Sunday afternoon against the Philadelphia Flyers but before that and right now, the offense has been kept quiet. As of right now, Rangers’ forwards Marian Gaborik and Ryan Callahan seem like the only two players that are consistently generating scoring chances.

However, guys like Derek Stepan, Brad Richards, Brian Boyle and others are struggling to score goals. Prior to these last few weeks, the Rangers had scoring depth and right now, it appears to be missing.

When this happens, it puts a ton of pressure on the team’s goaltenders Henrik Lundqvist and Martin Biron. It is like the goaltenders have to be as close to perfect as possible in order to win a hockey game.

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  Tags: brad+richards, brian+boyle, derek+stepan, dwayne+roloson, henrik+lundqvist, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, mathieu+garon, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, ryan+callahan, tampa+bay+lightning

The One That Got Away

Looking back at last night’s tilt between the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils, it was a game that the Rangers should have come away with two points.

The Blueshirts had three 1-goal leads that they let slip away in a 4-3 shootout loss at the Prudential Center. While these things happen in hockey, they are things that could have been prevented with better defensive coverage in the Rangers’ zone.

On both the Devils’ second goal and tying goal in the game, the Rangers appeared to be lost in their own zone. It should also be noted that Devils’ sniper Ilya Kovalchuk should never be given that much room in the offensive zone.

With that said, it was not a terrible game for the Blueshirts. They showed some offense and with better defensive coverage in their own zone in the third period, could have easily come away with their third straight victory.

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  Tags: buffalo+sabres, ilya+kovalchuk, martin+biron, martin+brodeur, montreal+canadiens, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, prudential+center

One more Before the Break

The New York Rangers are back in action tonight to take on the Winnipeg Jets at Madison Square Garden before taking a few days off for the NHL All-Star break.

The Blueshirts are coming off a big 3-2 overtime victory over the Boston Bruins thanks to a goal from Marian Gaborik. It was the Rangers’ 30th win of the season and as it stands right now, the team is tied for first in the Eastern Conference with the Boston Bruins with 64 points.

Tonight, the Blueshirts take on a team that they have beaten twice in the Jets. In both of those games, the team got excellent goaltending from Martin Biron. As such, one has to wonder if he will be in between the pipes tonight for the red, white, and blue Rangers.

For the Rangers, tonight’s tilt could be looked at as a “trap” game. As I mentioned earlier, the Blueshirts are tied for first in the East while the Jets are 10th in the East and three points out of the eighth and final spot.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, eastern+conference, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, winnipeg+jets

Rangers Impressive in Shutout win over the Leafs

It may not have been the most exciting game but the New York Rangers got the job done tonight with a win over the Toronto Maple Leafs.

For the Rangers, it was important for the club to get their offense going and for the most part, the team did just that tonight with goals from guys who do not score many of them (except for one guy). The Blueshirts got goals from Mike Rupp (4th goal of the season), Brian Boyle (his first goal in 22 games and 3rd goal of the season) and Derek Stepan (10th goal of the season and an assist).

Rangers’ netminder Martin Biron also had a solid game for his hockey club tonight. Biron picked-up his second shutout and 9th win of the season. While he was not bombarded with shots, Biron was good when he needed to be in making 19 saves and also adding his third assist of the season on Stepan’s goal.

With the win, the Rangers improved to 28-10-4 with 60 points. That has them first in the Eastern Conference (three points ahead of the Boston Bruins) and as of this writing, first in the NHL, one point ahead of the Vancouver Canucks.

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  Tags: bell+centre, boston+bruins, brian+boyle, derek+stepan, henrik+lundqvist, joffrey+lupul, martin+biron, mike+rupp, mikhail+grabovski, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, phil+kessel, toronto+maple+leafs, vancouver+canucks

Rangers In Toronto to Battle the Leafs

Coming off a 3-0 shutout loss to the Ottawa Senators, the New York Rangers will look to turn things around tonight against the Toronto Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre.

For the Rangers, their focus has to be on getting pucks to the net and making most of their chances. In their last two games, the team has scored just one goal in regulation while not being able to convert on many scoring opportunities.

The Blueshirts will be without forward Brandon Dubinsky once again tonight as he is nursing a sore shoulder. The team head coach, John Tortorella, wants to be careful with “Dubi” because he knows that they cannot afford to have him out of the lineup for an extended period of time.

“It’s still the same,” coach John Tortorella said of Dubinsky’s shoulder, which was initially hurt on a check by the Coyotes’ Taylor Pyatt in the first period of Tuesday’s 2-1 shootout victory, though Dubinsky finished that game. “We just don’t want it to turn into a bigger problem…We’re just trying to be careful.”

According to Andrew Gross of The Record, back-up netminder Martin Biron will get the start tonight for the Blueshirts. Biron will be looking for his ninth win of the season and more importantly, getting the Rangers back on the winning track.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, brandon+dubinsky, eastern+conference, john+tortorella, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, phoenix+coyotes, taylor+pyatt, toronto+maple+leafs

How About Six?

That is what the New York Rangers will be looking to do tonight against the hot Ottawa Senators.

The Blueshirts have won five in a row and are currently playing a great brand of hockey. The club is getting timely goal scoring, great defense and excellent goaltending from both Henrik Lundqvist and Martin Biron.

The team is also showing that they can win hockey games in many different ways. The Blueshirts can take a team down in regulation, overtime, or a shootout while also being able to come from behind or hold a lead going into the third period.

On the other side, the Ottawa Senators are also playing some great hockey. In their last 10 games, the team is 7-2-1 in their last 10 games and has won two straight. Through 44 games, the Senators are 23-15-6, which is good for fifth in the Eastern Conference.

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  Tags: atlantic+division, eastern+conference, henrik+lundqvist, martin+biron, montreal+canadies, new+york+rangers, nhl, northeast+division, ottawa+senators, toronto+maple+leafs

Rangers Come Through Again With Win Over Panthers

It seems like every single time the New York Rangers play, they find a way to win.

The team did just that tonight by defeating the Florida Panthers 3-2 in overtime on a goal by Marian Gaborik at Madison Square Garden. Gaborik had been buzzing around the Panthers’ net all night long and was finally rewarded when he got the overtime winner, his 23rd of the season.

With the win, the Rangers improved to 25-9-4 to remain in first in the Eastern Conference by 1 point over the Boston Bruins. The win was also the Blueshirts’ 11th on home ice as the team now has a 12-3-2 record on Garden Ice.

Besides Gaborik, the Rangers also got solid performances from Brad Richards (1 assist), Derek Stepan (1 assist), Ryan Callahan (1 goal), Michael Del Zotto (1 assist) and Dan Girardi. It was also nice to see defenseman Marc Staal get a bit more ice time with 12:51 minutes tonight.

Even though the Panthers scored first and also managed to knot the game up at 2-2, the Rangers controlled most of the game. The Blueshirts outshot the Panthers 41-21 and did a terrific job of getting pucks deep, forechecking and going hard to the net.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, brad+richards, dan+girardi, derek+stepan, florida+panthers, marc+staal, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, michael+del+zotto, new+york+rangers, pittsburgh+penguins, ryan+callahan

These Blueshirts Are for Real

As the New York Rangers get set to kick of 2012, it might be safe to say that these New York Rangers are for real.

Both team general manager Glen Sather and team head coach John Tortorella had a vision for this team and for once, it was the same. As such, the product on the ice has been quite successful this season so far.

The Rangers’ identity is one that is hard-working, competitive every night, has a never say die attitude and promotes team depth. Put all of these characteristics together and you have where the Rangers are today.

As of this writing, the Blueshirts are first in both the Eastern Conference and Atlantic Division with a 23-9-4 record. The team is one point ahead of the second place Boston Bruins and two points ahead of the fourth place Philadelphia Flyers.

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  Tags: artem+anisimov, boston+bruins, brad+richards, dan+girardi, derek+stepan, henrik+lundqvist, marc+staal, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, michael+del+zotto, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, ryan+callahan

Average

That is exactly what the New York Rangers were last night in their 4-1 loss to the Washington Capitals.

The team was not terrible but they certainly were not great either. This was a game that with better defensive coverage and less turnovers could have easily been a much better game for the Blueshirts.

What was interesting to see was how the Capitals played. Their team certainly played with a lot of energy and may have even looked like the Capitals of old.

With that said, the chances were there for the Rangers’ taking. There were plenty of juicy rebounds left by Capital’s netminder Tomas Vokoun but the Blueshirts failed to cash in on them.

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  Tags: boston+bruins, eastern+conference, florida+panthers, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, phoenix+coyotes, tomas+vokoun, washington+capitals

It’s Deja Vu all Over Again

It appears to be that way as just like the New York Rangers did last week, they will be taking on the New York Islanders again tonight at Madison Square Garden.

The Blueshirts are coming off a week in which they picked up six points with three victories over teams in their division. The team beat the New Jersey Devils, New York Islanders and Philadelphia Flyers last week to help move the team to first place in the Atlantic Division and second place in the Eastern Conference.

With games on Wednesday (at the Washington Capitals) and Friday (at the Florida Panthers), it will be interesting to see how team head coach John Tortorella uses his goaltenders. It is not out of the question that Tortorella uses netminder Martin Biron tonight against the Islanders and then uses Henrik Lundqvist for the next three games against the Capitals, Panthers and of course, the Flyers at the 2012 Winter Classic.

Other than that, there is not too much else going on in Rangerland these days. The team is winning plenty of hockey games, battling through injuries and getting solid play from everyone on the team.

Hopefully, things will stay that way as the team begins an interesting seven days in which they could potentially pick-up eight points.

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  Tags: 2012+winter+classic, florida+panthers, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, martin+biron, new+jersey+devils, new+york+islanders, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, washington+capitals

Getting the Job Done

That is exactly what the New York Rangers did tonight in their 4-2 win over the New York Islanders.

The team got strong performances from the likes of Marian Gaborik (1 goal), Brandon Dubinsky (1 goal and 1 assist), Anton Stralman (2 assists), and netminder Martin Biron (24 saves on 26 shots). With the win, the team improved to 20-8-4 on the season to move within two points of the Eastern Conference-leading Philadelphia Flyers, who the team will take on tomorrow night at Madison Square Garden.

Believe it or not, it was important for the Blueshirts to win tonight’s tilt. This game could have easily been a “trap game” for the Rangers and one that they would somehow find a way to lose. Instead, the team played hard, battled to the end, showed that they have depth and picked up two important points in the standings.

The club also showed just how lucky they are to have a goaltender like Biron. Biron is one of the league’s best back-ups and because he has played so well this season (7-1, 1.84 goals against average, .933 save percentage and 1 shutout), it gives team head coach John Tortorella to rest starting netminder Henrik Lundqvist more, which will be extremely important come April.

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  Tags: anton+stralman, brandon+dubinsky, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+york+islanders, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, stu+bickel, winter+classic

Buzzer Beater

Apparently, I missed an exciting New York Rangers’ game last night as the Blueshirts scored with 0.1 second left to go in regulation time to beat the Phoenix Coyotes by a score of 3-2.

I was lucky enough to see the replay of Brad Richards scoring the game winner but could not believe that the team won the game in this fashion. This was a game that the Rangers needed to win to get back on the right track and to do it in that manner was certainly exciting.

It was nice to see highlights of the game and see that Marian Gaborik picked-up two goals. He had been struggling the last few games to do just that but with his two goals last night, Gaborik now has 17 goals and also leads the team in points with 27.

Of course, it was also nice to see Richards come through with the game winner. The Blueshirts are paying him a lot of money to do things like that and with 26 points in 30 games, it is easy to see that the deal is working out for all involved.

Based on the statistics, Rangers’ back-up goaltender Martin Biron had another solid game for his hockey club. Biron is now 6-1 with a 1.82 goals against average, a .934 save percentage and 1 shutout.

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  Tags: brad+richards, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, phoenix+coyotes

Full Steam Ahead

That is the kind of attitude the New York Rangers should take after beating the Buffalo Sabres and Florida Panthers over the weekend by a combined score of 10-1.

The team is clicking on all cylinders as they are supplying the offense, solid defense and getting timely goaltending from both Henrik Lundqvist by Martin Biron. Put that all together and you have part of the winning formula for the New York Rangers.

The other part of the formula is hard work. This is something the team is getting from the likes of Ryan Callahan, Derek Stepan, Dan Girardi and even Marian Gaborik has been playing well on both ends of the ice.

With the two wins over the weekend, the Blueshirts improved their record to 17-6-4, good enough for fourth in the Eastern Conference. The team is also two points behind the conference-leading Philadelphia Flyers, something that should make the Winter Classic game between the two rivals even more intriguing.

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  Tags: buffalo+sabres, dan+girardi, derek+stepan, florida+panthers, henrik+lundqvist, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, ryan+callahan

The Perfect Road Game

That is exactly what the New York Rangers played last night when they defeated the Buffalo Sabres by a 4-1 score in Buffalo.

The team got two shorthanded goals, including an absolute beauty by team captain Ryan Callahan, as well as one from rookie Carl Hagelin, who had two goals in the game. Marian Gaborik picked-up a power play goal in the third period to close out the scoring for the Blueshirts.

The Blueshirts also got a strong performance from their netminder, Martin Biron. Biron made 32 saves to improve to 5-1 with a 1.79 goals against average, a .937 saver percentage and 1 shuout. With his strong play, Biron continues to prove that not only is he the perfect back-up for Henrik Lundqvist, but that he may as well be the best back-up goaltender in the entire National Hockey League.

Unfortunately, the Blueshirts do not have a lot of time to enjoy this victory as they will be back in action tonight against the streaking Florida Panthers. Back on November 23, the Panthers defeated the Blueshirts by a score of 2-1 in Florida and have only continued to play better as the Panthers are 16-8-5, good enough for third in the Eastern Conference and two points behind the first place Philadelphia Flyers.

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  Tags: buffalo+sabres, carl+hagelin, florida+panthers, henrik+lundqvist, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, ryan+callahan

Rangers Continue to Win

The New York Rangers are starting to show the National Hockey League that for the first time in years, they have some real offensive depth.

The club’s offensive depth really came out last night in their 5-3 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes. The team had five different goal scorers in Marian Gaborik, Ryan Callahan, Ryan McDonagh, Sean Avery and Michael Sauer.

With the win, the Blueshirts improved to 14-5-3 on the season, good enough for fourth in the Eastern Conference. Believe it or not, the team is also just three points behind the Eastern Conference and NHL leading Pittsburgh Penguins.

For the Rangers, last night’s game could have easily been a trap game. It could have been one where the team played to the level of their opponent and missed the opportunity to pick up the two needed points.

Luckily, the Rangers reversed the trend and played a solid road game to pick up their fourth straight win. On the other side, it was the Hurricanes’ fifth straight loss and second under new head coach Kirk Muller.

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  Tags: carolina+hurricanes, kirk+muller, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, michael+sauer, new+york+rangers, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh, sean+avery, tampa+bay+lightning

No Lundqvist Tonight for the Blueshirts

According to Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants, The New York Rangers will start goaltender Martin Biron tonight against the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre.

Marty Biron, from Lac St. Charles, Que. said it’s “always special” to play in the Bell Centre but not just for a “French-Canadian kid.” He talked about the history of the building, the Original Six matchup, the games he’s played in Montreal, including a playoff run with the Flyers. He also talked about his teammates saying they have full confidence in him, saying it was a “partnership” among all the players, that he had confidence in the defensemen, the defensemen had confidence in the forwards, etc.

Coach John Tortorella, asked about playing Biron tonight, which means Henrik Lundqvist will have a minimum of eight days between starts, said it was Biron’s turn and he also worried about resting Biron too long. Biron’s last game was a 3-0 win over the Jets on Nov. 6. Tortorella said it had nothing to do with Lundqvist’s struggles in the Bell Centre.

Here is some more good stuff on the Rangers’ back-up netminder.

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  Tags: henrik+lundqvist, martin+biron, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers

Stepan Line Gets it Done in Win Over the Senators

The New York Rangers’ used the offense created by the Derek Stepan line to defeat the Ottawa Senators in Ottawa last night by a score of 3-2.

Derek Stepan picked up a goal and two assists. His other linemates Marian Gaborik had two goals and Artem Anisimov picked-up two assists. In all, the line combined for 7 points and was a threat to score and create offensive opportunities every time they were out on the ice.

Gaborik is on fire. He now has 9 goals and is playing like he did in his first season as a Blueshirt. He is showing tremendous speed, a nose for the net, and of course, a terrific shot.

Stepan is also starting to put together a solid season. He has a tremendous amoutn of patience with the puck, he drives to the net and is also defensively responsible.

Anisimov has also stepped up his play. He has great hands and a lot of offensive skill to offer. He just needs to do so on a consistent basis.

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  Tags: artem+anisimov, carolina+hurricanes, derek+stepan, henrik+lundqvist, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, ottawa+senators

Home Sweet Home

Things certainly seem that way for the New York Rangers who finished their homestand by shutting out the Winnipeg Jets by a score of 3-0.

With the win, the team extended its winning streak at the Garden and its winning streak in general to four games, to improve their record to 7-3-3 on the season. The win also enabled the Blueshirts to finish their six game homestand with a 4-1-1 record and picked up 9 out of a possible 12 points.

Last night, the Blueshirts got solid performances out of Marian Gaborik (2 goals), Derek Stepan (1 goal and 1 assist) and Martin Biron (24 saves). With the victory, Biron improved his record to 3-0 on the season while also picking up his first shutout as a member of the Blueshirts.

After getting off to a somewhat slow start this season, Stepan has really picked up his play. He now has 7 points (2 goals and 5 assists) and has shown that he can do great things with the puck. Stepan is patient, he constantly looks for the open man and he knows how to slow the play down, which he allows him to find an open teammate.

Gaborik continues to shine this season. When healthy, he is one of the best offensive players in the game and right now, he is just that for the Blueshirts. On the season, Gaborik has 7 goals and 6 assists for 13 points in 13 games.

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  Tags: derek+stepan, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, ottawa+senators, winnipeg+jets

Rangers Extend Winning Streak To Three

The New York Rangers used a 3-goal first period to defeat the Montreal Canadiens by a score of 5-3 at Madison Square Garden last night.

Knowing that the Canadiens had played on Friday night against the Ottawa Senators, the Blueshirts came out and took advantage of a tired Canadiens’ team. The team got goals from Erik Christensen, Dan Girardi and a terrific goal from Michael Del Zotto to go up 3-0.

After that, the Canadiens found their legs and made it an interesting hockey game by cutting the lead to 3-2. However, instead of giving up the lead entirely, Rangers’ center Brad Richards came through and scored to make it 4-2 off a great shot from the slot, a place he has scored all his goals from this season.

While the Canadiens did end up cutting the lead to 4-3 late in the third period, Ryan Callahan sealed the game with an empty net goal. For the Rangers, it was there third straight win and more importantly, third straight win on Garden ice as the team improved its home record to 3-1-1.

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  Tags: brad+richards, dan+girardi, erik+christensen, john+tortorella, martin+biron, michael+del+zotto, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, ryan+callahan, sean+avery, winnipeg+jets

Staying Consistent

This is something the New York Rangers need to do in order to be successful and win hockey games this season.

With that in mind, Rangers’ bench boss John Tortorella will be sticking with the same lineup that won on Monday night against the San Jose Sharks tonight when his team takes on the Anaheim Ducks at Madison Square Garden. For the Blueshirts, that would be something consistent and something that they would hope to sustain.

What this does mean is that Rangers’ pest Sean Avery will not be playing tonight for the Blueshirts. This is understandable considering how the team played in its 5-2 win over the Sharks as it would not make much sense for Tortorella to change things when the team played well with a particular lineup.

The Rangers need to build on their win from Monday night and continue to lay the same kind of hockey. That means getting the puck to the net, driving to the net, playing responsibly in their own end and staying out of the penalty box. For the Rangers, those things are a recipe for success.

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  Tags: anaheim+ducks, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, martin+biron, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, sean+avery, winnipeg+jets

A 60-minute Effort

That is exactly what the New York Rangers gave last night in their 5-2 win over the San Jose Sharks at Madison Square Garden.

For the first time on home ice this season, there was no third period let down, something the team struggled with in their losses to the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Ottawa Senators. Instead, the team’s hard-work and effort lasted the whole game as the the team picked up its first win on the Garden ice in this somewhat young season.

Team captain Ryan Callahan is starting to show his scoring touch as he picked up another two goals last night, giving him five on the season. He is also showing a knack for going hard to the net and being in the right place at the right time, something the team will need from him throughout the rest of the season.

The team also got strong games from Brandon Dubinsky (2 assists), Erik Christensen (2 assists), Dan Girardi (2 assists), and back-up netminder Martin Biron (24 saves), who improved his record to 2-0. It was easily the team’s most complete game of the season.

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  Tags: anaheim+ducks, brandon+dubinsky, dan+girardi, erik+christensen, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, ottawa+senators, ryan+callahan, san+jose+sharks, toronto+maple+leafs

Time to Go Home

That is probably what every New York Ranger player was saying last night after beating the Winnipeg Jets by a score of 2-1 and ending their seven game roadtrip.

For the Blueshirts, last night certainly was not pretty but because they got great goaltending from Martin Biron and some lucky bounces, the team was able to come away with the all important two points. With the win, the Rangers improved their record to 3-2-2 on the year.

Again, this was not a great game for the Blueshirts. There was not a whole lot of offense generated by the team and in the third period, they were running around in their own zone, causing a lot of scary moments for head coach John Tortorella.

With that said, it was still a win and a win that enabled them to go 3-1 on their Western Canada road trip. This trip has always hurt the Rangers’ in seasons past so that is definitely a positive.

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  Tags: john+tortorella, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, phil+kessel, toronto+maple+leafs, winnipeg+jets

Time for Biron to Play

Even though New York Rangers’ netminder Henrik Lundqvist has been terrific to start the season, team head coach John Tortorella should consider giving backup goaltender Martin Biron a chance to play one of the three games coming up against the Calgary Flames, Edmonton Oilers, and the Winnipeg Jets.

On Twitter, there were rumors circulating that Biron might be starting tonight but considering that the morning skate has yet to take place, we probably will not know who is starting until early this afternoon.

With a healthy Biron, Tortorella needs to be willing to give him some playing time. The last thing the team needs is Lundqvist being overworked and tired heading into the Stanley Cup Playoffs come April.

Biron is a solid netminder who had a very good shortened season with the Blueshirts and showed the team and its fans that he can be relied on in big games if need be. He also showed the organization what it is like to have two good netminders on the team, something the Rangers had not had in the past few years.

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  Tags: calgary+flames, edmonton+oilers, john+tortorella, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, winnipeg+jets

Give Biron More Playing Time

That should be one of John Tortorella’s goals heading into the 2011-12 NHL season.

When healthy, Biron was terrific last season. In 17 games, Biron went 8-6 with a 2.13 goals against average and a .923 save percentage, which are much better numbers than what previous back-up netminders did under starter Henrik Lundqvist the last few seasons.

When talking about Biron, it is easy to suggest that he make 20-25 starts. He may be 34 years old but this is a netminder that stays in shape, can go long stretches playing in many games and more importantly, can win hockey games.

With that said, Tortorella also knows that he has an absolute workhorse in Lundqvist. Lundqvist is someone who wants to play every single game and if it were up to him, it would certainly be that way.

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  Tags: henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, martin+biron, new+york+rangers

Rangers Set to Take on the Sabres

With the NHL Trade Deadline out of the way, it is time for the New York Rangers to focus on clinching a playoff spot in a very competitive Eastern Conference.

Tonight, the Blueshirts will take on the Buffalo Sabres at Madison Square Garden in an extremely important game for both clubs. The Rangers currently sit in the seventh spot in the conference with 70 points, just three points behind the sixth place Montreal Canadiens while the Buffalo Sabres are only two points behind the eighth-place Carolina Hurricanes.

With back-up goaltender Martin Biron out indefinitely due to a broken collarbone, it will be up to franchise goaltender Henrik Lundqvist to lead the team the rest of the way. Lundqvist has played well in his last three games and has given his hockey club a chance to win each one of them.

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  Tags: buffalo+sabres, carolina+hurricanes, henrik+lundqvist, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers

Goaltender Biron Injured

From Jesse Spector of the Daily News Twitter Feed:

Martin Biron has a broken collarbone and will be out indefinitely. Cam Talbot called up by NYR.

On his twitter account, Rangers’ beat writer for The Record, Andrew Gross, confirmed that Biron suffered the injury in practice today.

This is definitely bad news for the Blueshirts as Biron had been playing great as Henrik Lundqvist’s backup this season.

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  Tags: martin+biron, new+york+rangers

Another Big Victory for the Blueshirts

Good morning folks. It was great to come home from hockey last night and see that the New York Rangers came away with a big 4-3 shootout victory over the Los Angeles Kings at Madison Square Garden.

Reading what beat writers had to say about the big two points, it was nice to see that guys like Ryan Callahan (1 goal and 1 assist), Marian Gaborik (1 goal) and Brandon Dubinsky (1 assist) all stepped up their games and played the way they should play in a playoff run: like the team’s best players.

It was also nice that Henrik Lundqvist picked up his 200th career victory. For someone who isn’t even 29 years old yet (will be in early March), it is quite impressive and also makes you wonder if that win total would be even higher if he were with a somewhat more talented hockey club. I guess that really does not matter so it’s great that our franchise netminder is getting the job done.

With the win, the team now has 66 points and is up four points over the eighth place Carolina Hurricanes and three points behind the sixth place Montreal Canadiens. The win was also important because the team still has two games to play in three days.

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  Tags: brandon+dubinsky, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, los+angeles+kings, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, ryan+callahan

Biron the right man for the job

Over the past few seasons, goaltenders who filled in for New York Rangers’ starting netminder Henrik Lundvqist did not work out so well.

There was Steve Valiquette, who seemed to never be the same after allowing a 2-0 lead to slip away in Toronto to the Maple Leafs back in early November of 2008 and then faltered early in the 2009-10 season as well. Then, there was youngster Chad Johnson. Johnson was not terrible but was not ready to handle a full-time backup NHL goaltender role.

Today, the Blueshirts no longer have that problem as Martin Biron seems to be the right answer. In 17 games (15 games started) this season, Biron is a remarkable 8-6 with a 2.13 goals against average and a .923 save percentage. With statistics like those, it is no wonder that head coach John Tortorella is not afraid to give Biron back-to-back starts.

On Saturday and Monday, despite losing both games, Biron showed that he is more than capable of playing extremely well and giving his team every opportunity to win a hockey game. In Montreal on Saturday afternoon, Biron was solid in making 27 saves on 28 shots in a 1-0 loss to the Canadiens.  On Monday night against the powerful Detroit Red Wings, he made 32 saves on 35 shots in being the team’s best player on the ice.

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  Tags: chad+johnson, henrik+lundqvist, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, steve+valiquette

Power Play Hurts the Rangers in 3-2 loss to the Wings

New York Rangers’ fans probably figured that tonight’s game would come down to the team’s power play and they were certainly right.

Unfortunately for Blueshirt fans, the game did not end well as the team lost 3-2 to the Detroit Red Wings at the Joe Louis Arena while wasting a 5-on-3 turning into a 5-on-4 for the last few minutes of the hockey game. It was a game in which the Rangers’ fired 47 shots on Wings’ goaltender Jimmy Howard but could not get the one behind Howard that would tie the game.

You cannot blame this game on Rangers’ netminder Martin Biron. Biron was stellar between the pipes for the Blueshirts in making 32 saves and once again giving his team every opportunity to win a hockey game.

And yes, the team did get goals from Derek Stepan and Brandon Dubinsky but where was Marian Gaborik? Where was Wojtek Wolski? Where was Vinny Prospal? And again, where the heck was the power play?

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  Tags: atlanta+thrashers, brandon+dubinsky, derek+stepan, detroit+red+wings, jimmy+howard, john+tortorella, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, new+york+rangers, vinny+prospal, wojtek+wolski

Tortorella has a Tough Goaltending Decision to Make For the Blueshirts

With New York Rangers’ netminder Henrik Lundqvist “struggling” a bit and Martin Biron playing extremely well yesterday afternoon against the Montreal Canadiens, it will be interesting to see who head coach John Tortorella decides to start in goal tomorrow night against the Detroit Red Wings.

It is very easy to make a case for both. Starting with Lundqvist, he is clearly one of the league’s best goalies and as a head coach, you want your best players to play against one of the best teams in the NHL.

Yes, Lundqvist has not been great in his last three or four games but he hasn’t exactly been terrible either. With him sitting out against the Canadiens, Lundqvist will more than likely return between the pipes and have a strong performance. What better team to do that against than the Detroit Red Wings?

As for Martin Biron, he was extremely strong yesterday afternoon against the Canadiens in making 27 saves. He gave his team every chance to win a hockey game, which is really all you can ask of your backup netminder.

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  Tags: detroit+red+wings, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, martin+biron, montreal+canadiens

Montreal Canadiens Add to Blueshirts Winless Streak

This afternoon’s game between the New York Rangers and Montreal was the perfect example of one team doing almost everything right except winning.

Unfortunately, this description fits the New York Rangers as they lost to the Canadiens this afternoon by a score of 2-0 at the Bell Centre, the third time the Rangers’ have been shutout this season. It was a game in which the Blueshirts were given every opportunity to win a hockey game and pick up two crucial points but they just were not able to finish their chances, something that has been a growing concern over the last four games.

The Rangers got an excellent performance from Martin Biron, who made 27 saves in a losing effort. At the other end, Canadiens’ netminder Carey Price was terrific in making 35 saves for his fifth shutout the season. Price was especially good in the third period when the Blueshirts were pressing for the equalizer.

The back breaker in this game was a late second period goal by former Ranger Scott Gomez. Gomez took an errant shot from the point off the backboards and roofed a shot under the crossbar for a 1-0 Canadiens’ lead. Late in the third with the goaltender pulled, Tomas Plekanec would add an empter netter to seal the Rangers’ fate.

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  Tags: carey+price, detroit+red+wings, martin+biron, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, scott+gomez, tomas+plekanec

Blueshirts Lose Two Valuable Points/You Tell Me…

Good evening folks. I am sorry to say that because I was playing hockey tonight, I was not able to catch much of the New York Rangers vs, New Jersey Devils game tonight.

With that said, I was disappointed to come home and find out that the Blueshirts lost two valuable points in a 3-2 loss to the team’s Hudson River rivals. Yes, the team is still not fully healthy and yes, the team almost came back from a 3-0 defecit but in the end, it is two points that are out the window.

Every game means something and the Blueshirts do not exactly have a firm hold on a playoff spot in the tight Eastern Conference. With a big game coming up on Saturday afternoon against the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre, it would have been better for the team to go into the game on a winning note. Instead, the team goes into it having not won in three games and also having lost to the 14th place team in the Eastern Conference.

Now, that is nothing against the New Jersey Devils. I may have not seen the game but I know that the Devils came into it having played some of their best hockey over an eight or nine game stretch. As such, they probably earned the victory tonight against the Blueshirts.

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  Tags: henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, martin+biron, montreal+canadiens, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, vinny+prospal

Blueshirts Get the Job Done Against the Capitals

When New York Rangers’ fans heard that Martin Biron was starting last night against the Washington Capitals, they all thought that head coach John Tortorella was giving the game away and hoping to pick up two points tonight against the Panthers.

As it turns out, they were wrong and the Blueshirts came away with a 2-1 shootout victory, thanks partly to some timely goaltending from Biron and a terrific defensive effort. The defense held the Capitals to just 23 shots and did a solid job of keeping the likes of Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom, Mike Green, Mike Knuble and others quiet on their way to another road victory.

Fifty-two minutes into the game, the Rangers were down 1-0 until Marian Gaborik tied it up when a Dan Boyle shot ffrom the top of the circle hit off Capitals’ netminder Braden Holtby and then deflected off Gaborik’s shoulder and in. It may not have been Gaborik’s prettiest goal but it was a goal that the team needed and a goal that will hopefully get Gaborik going offensively on a consistent basis.

In the shootout, the team got two great goals from Mats Zuccarello (4/4 in the shootout this season and in his career) and the eventual game winning goal from Artem Anisimov, his first ever shootout goal, giving the team its second straight shootout victory.

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Filed in: | Goal Line Report | Permalink
  Tags: alex+ovechkin, artem+anisimov, brandon+holtby, dan+boyle, florida+panthers, john+tortorella, marian+gaborik, martin+biron, mats+zuccarello, mike+green, mike+knuble, new+york+rangers, nicklas+backstrom, washington+capitals

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