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Goal Line Report

Entries with the tag: ryan mcdonagh

Pretenders

After winning the Atlantic Division, finishing first in the Eastern Conference and coming to within two wins of making it to the Stanley Cup Final since 1994, the New York Rangers came into this season as Stanley Cup contenders.

Throw in the fact that they had a Vezina Trophy winning goaltender between the pipes, traded for power forward Rick Nash and had the same defensive corps. the Blueshirts were in more than good position to win a Cup this year.

Unfortunately, nothing good has come from any of the above mentioned things for the Blueshirts this year. After losing 4-3 at Madison Square Garden tonight to the Winnipeg Jets, the team finds themselves in 11th place in the Eastern Conference. Sure, the Rangers are just one point out of the eighth spot but based on the way the team has played over the last week and a half, it certainly does not seem that way, right?

Tonight's game was a perfectly winnable situation for the Rangers, despite being depleted with injuries. With that said, the team's offense was not there until it mattered and when the team cut the lead to 3-2 in the third period, Rangers' masked man Henrik Lundqvist allowed an untimely bad goal to Jets' forward Evander Kane.

Another momentum killer for the Rangers came in the second period. The team, in particular Ryan Callahan, did a terrific job of killing off a Brian Boyle penalty and then a few minutes later, former Ranger Olli Jokinen scored to give the Jets a 3-1 lead.

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  Tags: evander+kane, henrik+lundqvist, michael+del+zotto, new+york+rangers, rick+nash, ryan+mcdonagh, winnipeg+jets

Trying to Build Consistency

That is something the New York Rangers will look to do tonight when they take on the Tampa Bay Lightning.

On Thursday night against the New York Islanders at Madison Square Garden, the Blueshirts skated away with a 4-1 victory. The team got terrific performances out of J.T. Miller, Chris Kreider, Ryan McDonagh and Henrik Lundqvist and did everything else they needed to do to win a hockey game.

For the Rangers to get all parts of their game going, the team's power play must start clicking. More often than not, the Rangers have been given ample opportunitites to build on their momentum by scoring a goal with the man advantage and more often than not, the Rangers come out of it goal-less.

When one thinks about it, it does not make any sense that the Rangers are not producing on the power play. The team has the talent, the shooters, the guys to go to the front of the net and the point men to get the puck to the net.

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  Tags: chris+kreider, henrik+lundqvist, j.t.+miller, john+tortorella, marian+gaborik, new+york+islanders, new+york+rangers, rick+nash, ryan+mcdonagh, tampa+bay+lightning

Rangers’ Young Trio Come Through in Win Over the Islanders

For the New York Rangers ot have success the rest of the way, they are going to need contributions up and down the lineup.

In a 4-1 win over the New York Islanders at Madison Square Garden tonight, Blueshirts' youngsters J.T. Miller (two goals), Ryan McDonagh (one goal and one assist) and Chris Kreider (one assist) all had big games for their team. The trio produced, played well on both sides of the ice and showed head coach John Tortorella that they are here to stay (mainly Miller and Kreider).

In just his second career NHL game, Miller notched his first two NHL goals. His first one came in the first period as Miller used his hustle, great footwork and patience with the puck to beat Islanders' goaltender Evegni Nabokov.

The second one was a beauty that came on the power play (Yes, you read that right). McDonagh made a great pass from just over his own blue and hit Miller cutting towards the offensive zone blue line and Miller beat Nabokov on a partial breakaway.

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  Tags: chris+kreider, evgeni+nabokov, j.t.+miller, john+tortorella, new+york+islanders, new+york+rangers, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh, tampa+bay+lightning

Defenseman Gilroy back in the Rangers’ Organization

When it comes to the New York Rangers' defensive corps, the team seems set for the forseeable future.

On Broadway, the Blueshirts have the likes of Ryan McDonagh, Dan Girardi, and Marc Staal. Down on the farm or in juniors, the team has a group of solid defensive prospects.

Yesterday, a former Rangers' defenseman jumped back into the fold in Matt Gilroy. Yesterday on Twitter, New York Post Rangers' beat writer Larry Brooks told us that Gilroy signed an AHL contract with the Connecticut Whale and that he could also end up signing with the Rangers when the lockout ends.
 

 

In Gilroy's first tenure with the Blueshirts, things were inconsistent. He was able to supply some offense but his defensive mishaps and lack of confidence in his won zone really hurt both himself and the team. 

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  Tags: dan+girardi, larry+brooks, marc+staal, matt+gilroy, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh

Ryan McDonagh: Rangers’ Best Defenseman?

When it comes to great New York Rangers' defensemen, one thinks of Brian Leetch, Brad Park, Harry Howell, Ron Greschner, as well as a few others.

Nowadays, the Blueshirts have several terrific defensemen. Last season, along with the great play of netminder Henrik Lundqvist, the team's defensive corps finished third in the league in goals allowed and helped Lundqvist win his first Vezina Trophy as the NHL's top goaltender.

With that said, there is one defenseman on the Blueshirts that stands just above the rest. Believe it or not, it is not Dan Girardi or Marc Staal.

Rather, it is 23-year-old Ryan McDonagh. Looking back at the deal that brought McDonagh to the Blueshirts, it appears that Glen Sather absolutely robbed the Montreal Canadiens

In his first season on Broadway in 2010-11, McDonagh scored 1 goal and added 8 assists for 9 points in 40 games. While that is not a lot of offense, it was his strong defensive plays that opened up the eyes of the organization and its fans.

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  Tags: brad+park, brian+leetch, dan+girardi, harry+howell, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, marc+staal, new+york+rangers, ron+greschner, ryan+mcdonagh

Youth Will Be Served on Broadway

No matter when the next NHL season starts, it will be about youth when it comes to the New York Rangers.

Since the NHL lockout in 2004-05, the Blueshirts have been on a much different path than they were prior to the lockout. Instead of being a team that went out and signed or traded for old veterans or free agents, they have become an organization focused on developing their prospects/younger players while also being a team looking for the right pieces to fill the Rangers' organizational puzzle.

Much like last season, the upcoming season will be about developing the club's younger players while hoping guys like Rich Nash, Brad Richards, Ryan Callahan, Marian Gaborik (when he comes back from injury), and others can continue to help the team continue on the path to their ultimate goal: the Stanley Cup.

One such youngster who will have a lot of eyes on him is forward Chris Kreider. After winning a national college championship with the Boston College Eagles, Kreider burst onto the Stanley Cup Playoffs scene on Broadway when he made his NHL debut against the Ottawa Senators in Game 3. 

While Kreider did not produce in his first game, he showed that he had tremendous speed, a nose for the net and that he was definitely an offensively gifted player that the Rangers would be lucky to have. Little did the Rangers know that Kreider offensive gifts would come to fruition in Game 6 when he scored the game winning goal for the Blueshirts to force a Game 7.

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  Tags: brad+richards, carl+hagelin, chris+kreider, marian+gaborik, michael+del+zotto, new+york+rangers, rick+nash, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh

Rangers Take Defenseman Brady Skjei with 28th Overall Pick

Good evening folks. I hope you all enjoyed watching the first round of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft.

It was an interesting first round to say the least. Seeing Jordan Staal get traded to the Carolina Hurricanes to play alongside his brother Eric, having Malcolm Subban, Montreal Canadiens’ defenseman P.K. Subban’s younger brother, get drafted by the Boston Bruins, see Dallas Stars’ forward Mike Ribeiro go to the Washington Capitals with the Capitals giving up a valuable prospect in Cody Eakin while also having a trade between the Columbus Blue Jackets and the Philadelphia Flyers all made it an interesting day for the National Hockey League.

Of course, it was also interesting for the New York Rangers as the team took defenseman Brady Skjei with the 28th overall pick of the draft. Click here to read what the Rangers’ web site says about him.

With the success that the team has had with the likes of Ryan McDonagh and Michael Sauer (before he got hurt), it should not be surprising that the Rangers’ took another American-born defenseman. Central Scouting ranked him at No. 19 and said the following about him:

NOTES: Stay-at-home blueliner is best skater among defensemen in draft but needs to use his big frame better. Plus-10 for gold medalist U.S. team at World Under 18s. Will begin his college career at Minnesota in the fall.

 

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  Tags: 2012+nhl+entry+draft, brady+skjei, michael+sauer, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh

Tough to Take

If you are a New York Rangers’ fan, this is most likely what you are feeling regarding what happened to the team tonight.

The New Jersey Devils ended the team’s hope of getting to the Stanley Cup Final by beating the Blueshirts 3-2 in overtime on a goal by rookie Adam Henrique tonight at the Prudential Center. It is certainly disheartening considering the way the Rangers played in this game.

With the exception of the first period, it seemed like the Rangers dominated this game. They outshot the Devils 35-29, forechecked hard, had a lot more puck possession and were once again able to overcome 2-goal deficit to tie the hockey game and put a a major scare into their Hudson River rivals.

Unfortunately for the Blueshirts, it was only a scare they put into the Devils and not the victory. With their playoff lives on the line for the fourth time this postseason, the Rangers were not able to overcome a 3-2 series deficit for the right to play a Game 7 at Madison Square Garden on Sunday night.

With that said, one has to wonder what it would have been like had the Rangers turned in better first period performances in this series. Time and time again, it seemed like the Rangers got down early and were forced to play comeback hockey. While the team was not terrible tying up hockey games, it is a tough way to play in the postseason and unfortunately, the Blueshirts learned that the hard way.

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  Tags: 2012+stanley+cup+playoffs, adam+henrique, carl+hagelin, chris+kreider, derek+stepan, martin+brodeur, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, pete+deboer, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh

Well-Shaped Roster Getting It Done

With the New York Rangers up 1-0 in their second round series over the Washington Capitals, it is easy to see that the Blueshirts are finally doing the right thing when it comes to shaping their roster.

This postseason is the example of that. The team and its head coach, John Tortorella, really want their youngsters to thrive and right now, several of them are doing just that.

However, the one that everyone is focused on heading into tonight’s Game 2 is Chris Kreider. Kreider, coming off a first star of the game performance in which he picked-up a goal and an assist, is showing the team and the rest of the NHL why he belongs in the league.

In the team’s 3-1 win in Game 1, Kreider scored his second game winning goal of the playoffs and showed how he can make a positive impact for this hockey club. At just 21 years of age, it is an impressive start and one that needs to continue if the Blueshirts want to keep on having success in the postseason.

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  Tags: artem+anisimov, brad+richards, chris+higgins, chris+kreider, john+tortorella, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh, scott+gomez, washington+capitals

What the Rangers Need to do to Win Game 7

While the NHL regular season does not mean much when it comes to the Stanley Cup Playoffs, there are things that a team did during the regular season that helps when it comes to playing in hockey’s second season.

This is the case when it comes to the New York Rangers. Tonight, the Rangers will host Game 7 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series against the Ottawa Senators. It is the Rangers’ first Game 7 at Madison Square Garden since they won Game 7 against the Vancouver Canucks in 1994 in the Stanley Cup Final.

The Rangers were extremely successful in the regular season and the three games they won in their series against the Senators because they played “Ranger Hockey”. Ranger hockey is something that team head coach John Tortorella came up with and it has worked to a ‘T’ when implemented correctly.

For starters, playing Ranger hockey is all about having a team first mentality. This means that playing a physical brand of hockey and blocking shots are almost mandatory and when the Rangers have won in this series, they have done both extremely well.

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  Tags: 2012+stanley+cup+playoffs, brad+richards, brandon+prust, brian+boyle, dan+girardi, henrik+lundqvist, marc+staal, marian+gaborik, new+york+rangers, ottawa+senators, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh

Top Spot in the Division and Conference

That is what the 2011-12 New York Rangers are in terms of the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference this season.

With their 5-3 win over the Philadelphia Flyers last night, the Blueshirts clinched the top spot in both their division and conference for the first time since 1994. Yes, we all know what happened that year but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

The Blueshirts jumped out to a 4-0 lead in the first period last night and never really looked back. Sure, they allowed the Flyers to score 3 goals and yes, Rangers’ goaltender Henrik Lundqvist certainly had to come up big but for the most part, this game was won in the first period.

The team got solid performances from Marian Gaborik (1 goal and 1 assist), Ryan McDonagh (1 goal and 1 assist), Brad Richards (2 assists) and Lundqvist (37 saves on 40 shots). The other usual suspects such as Ryan Callahan, Dan Girardi, Marc Staal, and Brian Boyle also put forth solid efforts in the clinching victory.

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  Tags: brad+richards, brian+boyle, dan+girardi, henrik+lundqvist, marc+staal, marian+gaborik, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, pittsburgh+penguins, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh, washington+capitals

Not Making It Easy on Themselves

The New York Rangers are certainly doing that when it comes to the Atlantic Division and Eastern Conference lead as the team dropped a 4-1 game to the Buffalo Sabres last night at Madison Square Garden.

The Blueshirts ran into outstanding goaltending in Ryan Miller as Miller turned away 26 of 27 shots. With the win, the Sabres are now tied in points with the Washington Capitals, who currently hold down the eighth and final spot in the Eastern Conference.

With the loss, the Rangers now hold just a one point lead over the Pittsburgh Penguins and a five point lead over the Philadelphia Flyers. And with all three teams playing tonight, picking up two points against the Toronto Maple Leafs is a must if the Rangers want to hold onto the top spot.

The Rangers did not play terribly last night. They generated plenty of scoring opportunities but just could not put one behind Miller when it counted.

The team’s best player last night was defenseman Ryan McDonagh. There is no doubt that McDonagh has plenty of offensive ability and soon enough, fans are going to be able to see that on a regular basis.

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  Tags: buffalo+sabres, henrik+lundqvist, mats+zuccarello, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, pittsburgh+penguins, ryan+mcdonagh, ryan+miller, toronto+maple+leafs, washington+capitals

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

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

Finding Another Gear

That is exactly what the New York Rangers are doing and for right now at least, it seems to be working.

Coming off a 5-2 win over the Philadelphia Flyers yesterday afternoon, the team knew that it would be in tough this afternoon against the Washington Capitals. Like the team has much of this season, the Blueshirts stood tough and came away with a 3-2 victory over Alex Ovechkin and the Capitals.

The team got another terrific performance from their goaltender, Henrik Lundqvist. Lundqvist made 24 saves on 26 shots for his 26th win of the season. If he continues to play this way, the Vezina Trophy for the league’s top netminder should be his come near the end of June.

The club also got a big goal from defenseman Ryan McDonagh. McDonagh gave the Rangers a 2-1 lead 13:21 into the second period and it turned out to be the game winner.

The goal did not come so easily for McDonagh as on the follow through, he twisted awkwardly and got his skate caught in the ice and fell. He was helped to the dressing room but luckily, returned to finish the game.

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  Tags: alex+ovechkin, boston+bruins, detroit+red+wings, henrik+lundqvist, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh, washington+capitals

Rangers’ PP Comes Through in the Clutch In Win Over the Bruins

For much of the season, the New York Rangers’ power play has been lackluster to say the least.

It looked like that was going to be the case again this afternoon against the Boston Bruins until overtime when the Rangers’ were awarded a five minute power play when Andrew Ference hit defenseman Ryan McDonagh from behind. It was then that Rangers’ sniper Marian Gaborik came through by beating Bruins’ netminder Tuukka Rask to give the Rangers a 3-2 victory.

It was Marian Gaborik’s second goal of the afternoon, giving “Gabby” 25 goals on the season. His first of the afternoon came of a blocked shot on Carl Hagelin and he sniped one past Rask to give the Rangers a 2-1 lead.

This was a game that lived up to everyone’s expectations. There was lots of hitting, lots of blocked shots, great goaltending from Henrik Lundqvist (32 saves) and Rask (30 saves), and had the feel of a playoff game.

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  Tags: andrew+ference, boston+bruins, eastern+conference, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, madison+square+garden, marian+gaborik, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh, tuukka+rask, winnipeg+jets

Rangers Steal Two Points in Pittsburgh

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.

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  Tags: brandon+dubinsky, henrik+lundqvist, new+york+rangers, phoenix+coyotes, pittsburgh+penguins, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh

Rangers Continue to Roll

It seemed to be a solid night for the New York Rangers last night as the team beat the Tampa Bay Lightning by a score of 4-2 for their fifth straight win.

Unfortunately, I was not able to catch any of the game last night as I was out with my wife and her friends. With that said, it was nice to come home and see the Blueshirts pick up yet another win and also see key guys contributing.

It was nice to see guys like Derek Stepan (1 goal and 1 assist), Brad Richards (1 goal and 1 assist), Artem Anisimov (1 goal and 1 assist) and Ryan McDonagh (2 assists) all have a multiple pint night in Tampa. It was also great to see Lundqvist have another solid performance in stopping 24 of 26 shots for his 11th win of the season.

I wish I could say more about the game but like I said earlier, I did not watch it so I do not want to make assumptions based on the score sheet. With that said, a win is a win and the Blueshirts continue to surprise people in the National Hockey League.

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  Tags: artem+anisimov, brad+richards, derek+stepan, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh, tampa+bay+lightning, toronto+maple+leafs

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

Rangers Start Another Winning Streak

The New York Rangers have started a bit of a winning streak after deating the Anaheim Ducks last night 2-1 in a shootout, giving them two straight wins in as many games.

Much like when the two clubs met in Sweden back in early October, this was an exciting game that saw timely goal scoring, some good physical play and great goaltending from Jonas Hiller and Henrik Lundqvist. The only thing that was different was that the Rangers turned the tables and won in a shootout on Marian Gaborik’s (yes, you read that right) goal.

Believe it or not, the Rangers probably could have won this game in the third period or even in overtime. Ryan Callahan had a clear breakaway in the third period and was absolutely stoned by Hiller. In overtime, the Rangers’ created a tic-tac-toe play with Gaborik, Michael Sauer and Ryan McDonagh but McDonagh put the puck wide over the net.

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  Tags: anaheim+ducks, henrik+lundqvist, jonas+hiller, marian+gaborik, michael+sauer, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh

Timing is Everything

That was certainly the case last night for the New York Rangers as they scored with just over a second left in overtime to defeat the Calgary Flames by a score of 3-2.

Brandon Dubinsky did all the work to get the puck into the offensive zone and feed the puck to defenseman Dan Girardi, who then fired the puck wide off the boards for defenseman Ryan McDonagh to come in and put the puck into the open side of the net. Some might say it was a set play but it was really all about the timing.

In the team’s second straight win, the Blueshirts got solid performances from the likes of Marian Gaborik (1 goal and 8 shots), Brandon Prust (shorthanded goal), and of course, Henrik Lundqvist, who made 33 saves. The club also got a terrific game out of their penalty killing unit as the team was once again somewhat undisciplined.

The Blueshirts find themselves with two straight wins on this four game Western Canada road trip and should be feeling pretty good about themselves. With that said, there are still a few things that the team needs to work on such as staying out of the box, not allowing high quality scoring chances and getting scoring from their second line.

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  Tags: artem+anisimov, brandon+dubinsky, brandon+prust, calgary+flames, dan+girardi, edmonton+oilers, henrik+lundqvist, marian+gaborik, new+york+rangers, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh, toronto+maple+leafs, winnipeg+jets

Always Consistent

Those two words describe New York Rangers’ goaltender Henrik Lundqvist’s play as a Blueshirt since joining the National Hockey League in the 2005-06 season.

He showed that once again last night with a 40-save shutout performance of the Vancouver Canucks, helping lead the Rangers to their first victory of the season. It only made sense that he was the story of the game because since joining the league, he has been the franchises’s best player.

In last night’s 4-0 win, Lundqvist was calm, cool, and collected under pressure. He did a solid job of controlling rebounds, challenging shooters and making himself look big to some of the league’s best shooters in Henrik and Daniel Sedin, Ryan Kesler, Alex Burrows, Sami Salo and many others on the Canucks.

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  Tags: brad+richards, brian+boyle, calgary+flames, derek+stepan, henrik+lundqvist, marian+gaborik, michael+rupp, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh, vancouver+canucks

All About Hope Now

The New York Rangers did what they had to do this afternoon in defeating the New Jersey Devils by a score of 5-2 at Madison Square Garden.

With the victory, the Blueshirts finished the regular season with 93 points, putting them up two points over the Carolina Hurricanes. The Hurricanes will take on the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight and should they lose in regulation time or overtime, the Rangers will clinch the final playoff spot and prepare for a first round matchup with the first place Washington Capitals.

It was great to see hard-working guys like Chris Drury, Brandon Prust, Ryan McDonagh and Vinny Prospal all beat future hall-of-fame netminder Martin Brodeur. For Drury, it was his first goal of the season and a big one at that. He also did well on face-offs and overall, was a positive factor for the Blueshirts this afternoon.

For McDonagh, it was his first career NHL goal. It could not have come at a better time for the Blueshirts as it gave them a 3-2 lead in the second period as well as a game-winning goal for #27.

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  Tags: atlanta+thrashers, brandon+prust, carolina+hurricanes, chris+drury, dan+bylsma, john+tortorella, martin+brodeur, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, pittsburgh+penguins, ryan+mcdonagh, tampa+bay+lightning, vinny+prospal

Rangers Set to Go Shark Hunting

If you’re still up at 10:30 p.m. tonight, I hope you hockey/New York Rangers’ fans will tune into tonight’s game between the Blueshirts and the San Jose Sharks.

After losing to the Anaheim Ducks on Wednesday night and having a few days off, the Blueshirts find themselves in tied for seventh/eighth in the Eastern Conference with the Buffalo Sabres. Unfortunately, the Rangers are also just two points up on the ninth place Carolina Hurricanes, making tonight’s tilt with the Sharks even more important.

Over at The Rangers Tribune, Nicholas Montemagno wrote about how he agrees with Rangers’ beat writer Larry Brooks on having team head coach John Tortorella unleash sniper Marian Gaborik. I could not agree more as it is imperative that Gaborik gets his offense going as now is not the time in the season to struggle offensively.

I also agree with head coach Tortorella when he says that it is all about the Henrik Lundqvist show now. Lundqvist needs to bring his A-game the rest of the way if the Rangers want to have any chance of getting into the playoffs. Lundqvist has been quite good over his last few games so hopefully, he will be able to keep it up down the stretch.

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  Tags: anaheim+ducks, artem+anisimov, brandon+dubinsky, buffalo+sabres, carolina+hurricanes, dan+girardi, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, marc+staal, marian+gaborik, mats+zuccarello, mike+sauer, new+york+rangers, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh, san+jose+sharks, vaclav+prospal

Rangers’ Shutout Capitals for the Second Time in Big 6-0 Victory

Going into tonight’s game against the Washington Capitals, many New York Rangers’ pundits and fans did not know what to expect. Both parties worried about the team being without Marc Staal and Marian Gaborik as well as facing a potentially potent Capital’s offense.

May be this was a good thing as the Blueshirts dominated the Capitals on the scoreboardc in a 6-0 shutout victory. Believe it or not, this was the Rangers’ second shutout over the Capitals this season as the team shut them out back in December in a 7-0 romping.

Besides picking up the shutout, the best thing to come out of this game for the Rangers’ was their success on the power play. The team went 2-for-3 on the man advantage with goals from Erik Christensen (he had two goals and an assist in the game) and Derek Stepan. Believe it or not, the team’s power play has been a lot better of late and that is because they are being more aggresive and throwing more pucks on the net. Hopefully this trend will continue for the Blueshirts.

Speaking of Christensen, he played like a man on a mission tonight. He had three points, was around the net a lot, he had four shots on goal, played on the power play and was effective. Rangers’ head coach John Tortorella needs more of this from Christensen as the team continues to build their playoff push.

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  Tags: carolina+hurricanes, dan+girardi, derek+stepan, erik+christensen, henrik+lundqvist, john+tortorella, marc+staal, marian+gaborik, michael+sauer, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh, tampa+bay+lightning, washington+capitals

My Oh My How Things Changed on Broadway

Before the NHL Lockout during 2004-05, the New York rangers were all about having veterans and experience on the roster, even if it came at the expense of a younger player or prospect.

Fast forward about seven years later and the Blueshirts have completely changed their philosophy. A lot of this, believe it or not, is due to general manager Glen Sather along with former head coach Tom Renney and new head coach John Tortorella.

Today, the latter was raving about another Rangers’ prospect who he thinks should have already turned pro in Chris Kredier, MVP of the 2011 Beanpot Tournament:

“I wish he’d turn pro last year,” Tortorella said. “I hope he turns pro next year. I hope he’s with us. He’s a sophomore now and we’re anxious to get him involved in pro hockey. We think he’s got some good stuff to offer and we want to get him tracked up here with us as soon as possible.”

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  Tags: artem+anisimov, brandon+dubinsky, chris+kreider, derek+stepan, john+tortorella, mats+zuccarello, michael+del+zotto, michael+sauer, new+york+rangers, ryan+callahan, ryan+mcdonagh

Big Weekend on Tap for the Blueshirts

As we head a bit further into the month of January, games start to become increasingly important and points become spared as teams begin to really figure out whether they are a playoff team or not.

Heading into tonight’s game with the Dallas Stars, the New York Rangers currently find themselves seventh in the Eastern Conference with 49 points. They are just one point behind the sixth place Atlanta Thrashers, three points behind the fifth place Washington Capitals and fourth place Philadelphia Flyers and seven points behind the Atlantic Division leading Pittsburgh Penguins.

With all of that in mind, four points are on the line this weekend as the Blueshirts take on the Dallas Stars tonight and the St. Louis Blues tomorrow night. The Stars are currently third in the Western Conference with 52 points while the Blues are seventh in the West with 46 points. As such, these are big games against two playoff calibre hockey teams.

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  Tags: dallas+stars, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh, sean+avery, st.+louis+blues

Rangers’ Defense: Not So Bad

Going into the season, many hockey pundits and fans alike wondered how the New York Rangers’ defense would perform this season.

Well, almost halfway through the season, the team is currently eighth in the National Hockey League in goals against, averaging 2.55 goals against per game. Not bad for one of the youngest defensive corps in the NHL.

When it comes to the team’s defense, one constant has been Marc Staal. He blocks shots, breaks up plays, hits hard, makes great outlet passes and every once in awhile, shows that he has some offense in him. He has been the club’s best defenseman since joining the NHL in the 2007-08 season.

Defenseman Dan Girardi has also been one of the Rangers’ best defenseman since joining the team during the 2006-07 season. He logs a lot of ice, blocks a lot of shots, and has contributed 20 points (3 goals and 17 assists) from the blue line this season. When paired with Staal, they are one of the best shutdown pair of defensemen in the NHL.

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  Tags: dan+girardi, marc+staal, matt+gilroy, michael+del+zotto, michael+sauer, michal+rozsival, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh, steve+eminger

Not Just Yet for Ryan McDonagh

According to Peter Botte of the Daily News, recently called up defenseman Ryan McDonagh will not play for the New York Rangers tomorrow night against the Carolina Hurricanes.

Defenseman Ryan McDonagh, who was recalled from Connecticut to replace demoted Michael Del Zotto, also took part in practice. He isn’t slated to play against the Hurricanes, with Tortorella again praising Matt Gilroy for working his way back into the Rangers’ top-six.

Don’t worry folks. I have a feeling that Tortorella will get McDonagh in the lineup very soon but right now, the team has a solid defense in Marc Staal, Dan Girardi, Michal Rozsival, Matt Gilroy, Michael Sauer and Steve Eminger. With that in mind, there is no need to rush McDonagh into a game right now.

 

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  Tags: carolina+hurricanes, john+tortorella, new+york+rangers, ruslan+fedotenko, ryan+mcdonagh

Del Zotto Down, McDonagh Up

From New York Rangers’ beat writer Larry Brooks via Twitter:

BREAKING: Post has learned that Rangers are sending Del Zotto to AHL and recalling Ryan McDonagh.

This was a long time coming for Del Zotto. It was apparent that he was not getting it done and struggled by coughing up pucks, not playing his position well enough in the defensive zone while also lacking confidence.

For Del Zotto, getting some time down in the AHL will be a great thing for him. It will give him a chance to get his confidence back, see how the game should be played and allow him to gather the necessary tools he needs to succeed in the National Hockey League.

 

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  Tags: michael+del+zotto, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh

Blueshirts Sign McDonagh

The Blueshirts certainly now have depth at the defense as they signed Ryan McDonagh to a contract today.

McDonagh came over in the Scott Gomez deal and is expected to be a solid defenseman at the NHL level. For awhile, it appeared that may be McDonagh would go back to Wisconsin University but according to Dan David of the New York Rangers’ web site, attending the prospects camp last week made it clear to him that he wanted to jump to the pro level.

Although he could have returned to the University of Wisconsin as captain of a Badgers team that he helped lead to last spring’s NCAA championship game, McDonagh felt the week he spent at the MSG Training Center made his decision to leave much easier.

“The camp was important for a lot of reasons,” he said. “First and foremost, I got to meet some of the Rangers staff members face to face and to have them meet me as well. Second, I got to know some of the other players in the organization. I thought it was important to build some relationships with them during a tough week of camp and getting to know them. The third thing was more for myself. I know the pro game is different from the college game, and I wanted to see if I was physically ready and mentally ready and everything like that.”

Click here for more on McDonagh.

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  Tags: new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh

Some Thoughts on Ryan McDonagh

From great friend of the blog Nicholas Montemagno at The Rangers Tribune:

Last week I notified readers of reports that claimed New York Rangers prospect Ryan McDonagh has made the decision to play another season with the Wisconsin Badgers, his NCAA team which he will captain next year. This past Sunday, the infamous Larry Brooks of the New York Post was at it again, this time making a controversial statement about the whole McDonagh situation and about his future, or lack thereof, here in New York.

Click here for more from Montemagno/Brooks.

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  Tags: new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh

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