Kukla's Korner

Goal Line Report

Entries with the tag: winter classic

View from the Top

That is exactly what the New York Rangers have after defeating the Philadelphia Flyers by a score of 4-2 last night at Madison Square Garden.

The team came out and played an almost perfect home game by cashing in on their opportunities, never quitting on plays, forechecking, playing solid defense, and getting terrific goaltending from Henrik Lundqvist. Put these all together and you have another solid win on home ice.

With the win, the Rangers are now tied with the Flyers for the Atlantic Division lead and are second in the Eastern Conference, one point behind the Boston Bruins. Not bad for a team that no one knew just how good they were going to be or what they were capable of.

For starters, the team was certainly good at deflecting pucks past Flyers’ netminder Ilya Bryzgalov. Derek Stepan did just that on the team’s first goal in the second period when he deflected defenseman Stu Bickel’s shot from the point and surprised Bryzgalov to give the Blueshirts a 1-0 lead. The goal was put under a review but because Stepan’s stick was below the crossbar, the goal counted.

Ruslan Fedotenko did the same thing and his goal was also under review because it was first thought that the team hit the crossbar. However, after reviewing the play, the puck hit the back bar inside the net and the Rangers went up 2-0.

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  Tags: atlantic+division, boston+bruins, derek+stepan, eastern+conference, florida+panthers, henrik+lundqvist, ilya+bryzgalov, marian+gaborik, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers, ruslan+fedotenko, ryan+callahan, stu+bickel, washington+capitals, winter+classic

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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Filed in: | Goal Line Report | Permalink
  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

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