Stay of execution or the start of something special? The Rangers held on to get their first win of the Cup finals Wednesday night and give the fan base a glimmer of hope. Let’s have a little muse about how things went down.
Earlier this week we considered a few reasons to be cheerful despite the Rangers being 3 down in the series. One of those reasons was Chris Kreider who had a huge part to play in the game winning goal. Kreider’s mere presence causes problems, even against the best defenses in the league.
If Kreider can continue to go to the net, continue to play physically and get a little less reckless in his own zone, the sky’s the limit. Yes, Kreider needs to develop more facets to his game but he’s already scaring teams.
Martin St Louis. He leads the team in goals; he has three game winning tallies amongst his eight markers. If someone told me the Rangers would give up two first round picks and a captain that was pricing himself out of town for a trip to the Finals, I’d have definitely taken that deal. Well, that’s what we got. Hindsight is a wonderful thing and while St Louis hasn’t been brilliant every game he’s certainly justified Sather’s decision to bring him to New York.
Is it me or did Anton Stralman officially price himself out of staying in New York Wednesday night? Defensively it was his best game as a Ranger. In a weak free agent market Stralman has a legitimate chance to seriously cash in. It’s been nice knowing you Anton.
Henrik Lundqvist may indeed end on the losing side of this final series but, all things considered he has cemented his place as the best goaltender in the world during these playoffs. Wednesday night Lundqvist was majestic.
Change is unavoidable. While he was certainly better in last night’s effort, it’s fair to assume Brad Richards is definitely on his way out of New York this summer. He’s not got enough left in the tank to warrant one more year let alone half a decade. His desire, talent and the way he’s stepped up in a leadership role has been admirable but Richards is not a viable option for the Rangers. Sometimes business sense has to dictate.
Nine players on the Rangers have four or more goals. Depth gets you to the Final, but when only two players have six or more goals the aforementioned depth is not enough.
Has anyone else really liked Derek Dorsett? If he can get a little more consistent, and get back to chipping in a few points here and there, Dorsett will be a Ranger for quite a while. The Rangers need more, not less abrasiveness and he’s a great depth player.
Obviously it’s one game at a time from here on in. If they win game five, the Garden will be jumping for game six, won’t it? All of a sudden the pressure goes back to the Kings who have seen first hand what momentum can do to a 3 game lead in a seven game series.
• Who has been the biggest disappointment for the Rangers this series?
• Brian Boyle or Anton Stralman; which one do you keep and why?
• Who has the better upside as a Ranger Derek Stepan or Derick Brassard?
• How many games will the Stanley Cup final last?