Game 37: Parise Returns

December 22, 2013, by
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

Zach Parise returns to the Garden tonight, but will be sporting Minnesota green instead of Jersey red. The Minnesota native, along with Mikko Koivu leads the Wild in scoring (27 points), and will be looking to rebound after a 5-2 loss in Pittsburgh last Thursday.

Under Mike Yeo, the Wild run a 1-2-2 forecheck which they use aggressively or conservatively depending on game situation. In the defensive zone they use a low zone collapse pretty much exclusively. The Wild prefer to attack the blueline with speed so the Rangers are going to have to be good defending the rush tonight and not leaving Talbot on an island. On special teams, the Wild run an umbrella power play and a diamond force penalty kill.

Tonight marks the second to last game of this 9 game homestand before playing 6 of their next 7 on the road. Time to finish strong.

Rangers Lineup (unconfirmed):

Chris Kreider-Derek Stepan-Rick Nash
Brad Richards-Derick Brassard-MZA
Carl Hagelin-J.T. Miller-Benoit Pouliot
Brian Boyle-Dom Moore-Derek Dorsett

Ryan McDonagh-Dan Girardi
John Moore-Anton Stralman
Michael Del Zotto-Justin Falk

Cam Talbot gets the start.

Scratches: Ryan Callahan (MCL), Marc Staal (concussion), Taylor Pyatt (healthy)

Game time is 730pm tonight on MSG. Don’t forget to check out our Rangers Tickets link for deals to attend games.

Categories : Game Thread


  1. Tiki Tim says:

    Tell us the Rangers are gonna win tonight, Dave. Tell us! 🙂

  2. Walt says:

    Only one question, why is Hags not skating with Nash??

    The winning begins tonight!!

    • @Centerman21 says:

      Before his last 2 goals, Hagelin had gone 14 games without a goal and was pretty much invisible for 2-3 weeks. Of late he’s been skating better. He’s also making plays on the 4th line giving the Rangers some balance through the lineup. Since he’s been the AV has rolled 4 lines more consistently and has shown some confidence in his 4th line.
      So far in this game I see the Wild using the same 1-2-2 as the Rangers much more aggressively and to much better effect. AV needs to use the forecheck more effectively.

      • Walt says:

        Question for you my friend, could it be that Hag’s play has been affected because he was split from the Nash line?? Last season they had such great chemistry, now they are apart, and both aren’t playing up to their potential!! Odd isn’t it??

  3. joe719 says:

    Maybe somebody could come up for another word for the 6 guys on the backline for this team. After watching Moore on that goal, calling him a defense man, demeans the rest in the profession.

  4. The Suit says:

    Brassard and Kreider confused on Suter coverage on first goal. Allow him to walk right in.

    Moore can’t tie up Pom Pom. Goal.

    • joe719 says:

      Is Chris F in the lineup for the Rangers?

    • @Centerman21 says:

      You know what suit. Since AV has taken over, I’d say 80% + of the goals against the Rangers have had some sort of miscommunication on the play. Maybe AV needs to simplify the coverage inside the Dzone until the roster is finalized for the rest of the season. There’s too many times It’s “Lundqvist Island” and he’s Ono on one with a shooter or a man screening him waiting for an easy tip. Maybe he could add a zone for 2 players to cover in and around the high slot. Leave 2 defenseman there and leave 3 forwards to cover the rest of the slot. Just like you wrote in systems post on Man coverage. Not to follow skaters outside the scoring area. So play man coverage there. 3 man 2 zone.
      Girardi is done. Can’t play the puck and has trouble keeping up with Forwards 1 on 1.
      The Rangers could fix this team by adding Stempniak-Z Smith-& a mobile defenseman. I believe Evander Kane can be had. Changes things if they get him but the easiest this would be 3rd line guys. Need depth. Stempniak is a hard player from NY State.

  5. Bloomer says:

    Why was Kreider taking that drawn? They looked disorganized like no one knew who had who. Utter confusion.

  6. joe719 says:

    Love how Parise can tie up Talbot in the crease after they play, and none of our heroes go near him.

  7. joe719 says:

    Yessssss!!! Finally some offensive ability!!!! Now get 3 or 4 more!!!

  8. Bloomer says:

    Pouliot does have good hands just wish he used his size more to win some puck battles and make a few more hits.

  9. joe719 says:

    Great play by Brassard. He so effective when he’s skating. Its when he he gets caught along the boards that he has trouble.

    • Dave says:

      One thing I’ve been harping on lately, the Islander game aside, is that the team has started to do more of the right things in the games against Calgary and Pittsburgh. Baby steps to get out of the hole they dug themselves.

  10. Dan says:

    Anyone else feel Zucc has been our most consistent offensive player all year? Guy gives a 110% every night, always trying to make things happen with his vision/passing and always in the middle of things even though he’s the smallest guy on the rink. One of the few bright spots this year.

    • Walt says:

      It’s a contract year, the kid will get a nice raise won’t he!!!!!

      He has been our best forward for about the last 6-8 games.

    • Ray says:

      And so far he hasn’t been on the ice for an opposing PP goal. Wonder how often penalty killers do that – probably more than we think.

  11. Bloomer says:

    Some of the passes that Zucc makes are brilliant. Now that he is shooting the puck more, the opposition doesn’t know whether he going to shoot pass or deke. He backchecks and kills penalties too. He has become a complete hockey player.

  12. Walt says:

    Lets hope that this is the begining of a good thing!

  13. Chris F says:

    It’s games like this that remind us why this team should be such a great team, and not just on paper. They desperately need to find consistency, because when everything is clicking, this can be a top tier team.

    • Dave says:

      It’s why a lot of us weren’t concerned with the losses (until this homestand). This is a good team when they show up to play. They are starting to do the right things again.

  14. Chris F says:

    Another night, another strong outing by Talbot. The guy’s numbers are nearly flawless.

    Earlier in the year the D-men were really playing strong in front of Talbot; they seemed to protect the crease for him much better than they were for Lundqvist. Last night, though, they did a fairly poor job, leaving Wild players free in front of Talbot way too frequently. At least 4 times a Wild forward was right out front and able to deflect or tap a cross crease pass.

    And yet, Talbot held them to a single goal. Certainly, his numbers are unsustainable, but at what point do we acknowledge that this guy is the real deal?

    Justin, after seeing him play again last night, any new insights on his strengths / weaknesses / potential?