Game Wrap-ups

Rangers continue to roll with win over Columbus

Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images
Photo by Kirk Irwin/Getty Images

The Rangers continue to win games, this time with a 4-2 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets. Despite the fact that the Rangers never trailed, this was a very tight game. Neither team had a huge puck possession advantage throughout the game. New York actually had a fairly large puck possession margin in the second period, but Columbus roared back as they pushed to tie the game in the third.

Cam Talbot was again solid in net, proving to be a very capable backup to Henrik Lundqvist. There will be some that point to lucky bounces –specifically that third Rangers goal– as the reason why they won, but a win is a win is a win. Bounces will always be a part of the game, and you create your own luck. The Rangers, at the time of the Mark Letestu own-goal, had a pretty decent sized lead in puck possession. When the puck is in the offensive zone that much, good things happen.

On to the goals:

Rangers 1, Jackets 0

Two different CBJ players beat on this goal.
Two different CBJ players beat on this goal.

On an innocent 3 on 3 rush into the offensive zone, Brad Richards was able to gain the zone and hit Ryan Callahan with a long cross-ice pass. R.J. Umberger was covering Cally, but the pass –and Cally– eluded him. Cally moved in, dropped his shoulder to shoot, and fed the puck directly to Carl Hagelin’s stick in front of the net. Hagelin got so wide open by making a move on Fedor Tyutin to get to the inside. Easy tap-in goal.

Jackets 1, Rangers 1

You can see where this is going.
You can see where this is going.

This goal was the product of a bad change for the Rangers. With the Jackets on a 3-on-2 rush, Hagelin backchecked to make it a 3 on 3, but the other two Rangers went to the bench for a change instead of coming to play defense. Brandon Dubinsky hit the trailer Fedor Tyutin in the high slot, who stickhandled around a diving Hagelin and beat Talbot.

Rangers 2, Jackets 1

It's nice to have a good powerplay.
It’s nice to have a good powerplay.

With the Rangers on the powerplay following the Tyutin headshot on Taylor Pyatt, the 1-3-1 went to work. Sergei Bobrovsky was distracted by Cally in front, and after some good puck movement, Ryan McDonagh let go a shot from the point that Cally deflected past Bob. Guys in front, shots from the point. It’s refreshing.

Also worth noting that Mats Zuccarello was left wide open in the slot as well.

Rangers 3, Jackets 1

Mark Letestu just shot the puck into his own net. Bob wasn’t on the post either. Luck is luck, and a goal is a goal.

Jackets 2, Rangers 3


I don’t think this goal qualifies as a defensive miscue for the Rangers. Columbus had a good shift, and put on a lot of pressure. You can argue that J.T. Miller was in No Man’s Land with his positioning, but Ryan Murray made a very smart play to wait for Miller to slide past him before ripping his shot. If he didn’t wait, Miller would have blocked the shot. Another thing to notice is the guy on the top left (unfortunately do not recall who that was). He over-committed a bit on the pass across to Murray, and had the shot been stopped, there may have been an issue clearing the rebound. The Rangers were outnumbered on the weak side.

Rangers 4, Jackets 2

McDonagh empty netter.

Fenwick Chart:

Courtesy of ExtraSkater
Courtesy of ExtraSkater

This is a bit of an interesting graph. Over the past few games, we saw the Rangers get dominated early in puck possession, but turn it on late in the first through the end of the game. This time around, the Rangers and Blue Jackets were neck and neck until the Rangers started tilting the ice in their favor int he second. But New York’s inability to control face offs led to Columbus tilting the ice back to them in the third. Luckily the Rangers were able to hold the lead.

With the win, New York has won two in a row, five of six, and six of eight to climb back to .500. After starting the season 3-6, the team is now 8-8 with a pair of very winnable games against Florida and New Jersey coming up. We preached the 20 game rule during that awful nine game road trip. Seven games after that trip the Rangers are playing some great hockey, and they still haven’t dressed a fully healthy squad yet.

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  • All is well in Ranger-land for the moment. I’m going to savor the moment before the trade talks start again.

  • Did anyone take notice of Zucc last night???

    He is funny to watch, little guy has heart. He went behind the net and threw his little frame around, looked like a flee, but finished his check. I’d love to see more of that from some of the bigger frames on the team!!

    • For a skilled guy, he misses on too many open chances. His passing and vision on the ice is superb, though.

    • As far as Zuc goes, I never really saw him as a top line guy but he has performed admirably since he was a healthy scratch. That line has had some 45 second shifts entirely in the opponents zone. He has been great so far and it’s good to see the team able to win without Nash. When he does return, this team is a contender. No doubt.

  • Thought that “headshot” by Tyutin was anything but. Pyatt dipped his head and Tyutin lead with his shoulder – definitely not an elbow. Pyatt put himself in a bad position by dipping his head with the puck in the slot. Textbook hockey hit.

    Probably a product of the back to back, but thought the Rangers were a little too passive in the third. Not winning faceoffs didn’t help, but I thought they sat on the lead too much and were lucky to not give on up there.

    Other than that, a solid game for the Rangers. Took a lead into the third which is all you can ask for, especially for a team that has a record of something like 95-0-4 when leading after two.

  • Actually the Rangers started the year 3-7 (not 3-6). We often forget the Montreal home opener. This is an impressive run. The next few look quite winnable as well. Sather is getting precisely what he was looking for when he fired Torts. Fun to watch. MDZ still has me wondering if he is Cup material.

  • Although the NYR are playing a much cleaner game, I am still considered about third defensive pair of Del Zotto and Moore. Their puckhanding and decisions with the puck in the defensive zone give me angst. While Moore is better, I see Del Zotto being pushed around by the opposition in our zone frequently. Maybe a sitting and bring up Conor Allen from Hartford. Liked him in pre-season.

    • Case of the name on the back skewing the opinion. Moore and MDZ have been very similar. Prone to mistakes, but still solid as a third pairing.

  • Doug has a point, MDZ looked like he was being pushed around last night. Is it me, or is MDZ looking like when he has the puck, he seems scared , and wants to get rid of it, causing turn overs? He looked very poor last night in our defensive zone!

    • But MDZ also had a couple rushes that were great. Specifically remember one where he got it in the defensive zone, beat the forecheck, deked two guys in the neutral zone and got off a good shot.

    • Have to take that with a grain of salt. Traded players, especially those that didn’t want to be traded, are always a bit emotional.

  • Has anyone seen Mcilrath play lately? Are we being hyped about his progress? A rugged defenseman is about the only thing this team is missing if they’re to be taken seriously as a Cup contender. MDZ beware. The little I saw of him in preseason was quite underwhelming. He actually stunk.

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