Game Wrap-ups

Hagelin’s hat trick gives Rangers big win in Winnipeg

Everybody happy! (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, John Woods)
Everybody happy! (AP Photo/The Canadian Press, John Woods)

Carl Hagelin notched his first career hat trick last night, giving the Rangers the much-needed offensive wake up call en route to a 4-2 victory over Winnipeg. Things weren’t so happy in the first period, when the Rangers squandered an early Hagelin goal by surrendering two quick ones to the Jets. But the Rangers persevered, tying the game eight minutes later and taking the lead with just six seconds left in the second. They did not look back.

Not lost in all this was Henrik Lundqvist, who made 30 saves in the victory. The win was the 301st of his career, tying him for the Rangers all-time record with Mike Richter. Lundqvist made the saves he needed to make, and was beaten on two shots that were goal-scorer goals. Kevin Klein also recorded a pair of assists in the contest.

On to the goals:

Rangers 1, Jets 0

Puck clearly goes off Hagelin's stick here.
Puck clearly goes off Hagelin’s stick here.

After Brad Richards won the face off cleanly, Kevin Klein put a wrist shot on net that deflected off Benoit Pouliot and Carl Hagelin for the goal. The double deflection meant Ondrej Pavelec stood no chance.

Jets 1, Rangers 1


After some good sustained pressure from the Jets, Blake Wheeler took a shot from the face off circle that was stopped by Hank. The rebound was batted out of mid-air by Dustin Byfuglien from the corner of the net for the goal. There wasn’t much Dan Girardi or Ryan McDonagh could do here. Buff has a huge reach, and he whacked it out of the air.

Jets 2, Rangers 1

unnamed (1)

Hagelin gave the puck away in the neutral zone while the Rangers were changing. This game Michael Frolik a chance to get the puck to Bryan Little at the blue line, who drew both Hagelin and Anton Stralman to him before dishing to Andrew Ladd down the wing with room. Ladd’s shot was a rocket over Hank’s stick-side shoulder.

Rangers 2, Jets 2

The only time this camera angle ever worked.
The only time this camera angle ever worked.

Derek Stepan and Chris Kreider ran the play that has worked so well for them in the past for this goal. Stepan shot the puck off the boards to clear the zone, and Kreider used his speed to catch up to the puck for a chance from the wing. Kreider burned Zach Bogosian in the process and beat Pavelec short side.

Rangers 3, Jets 2

unnamed (3)

MSL came out of the box and had plenty of time to collect the puck in the corner of the offensive zone, turn around, and see what options he had. The first mistake by the Jets here was that Jacob Trouba followed MSL behind the net with less than ten seconds in the period. The second was that Bogosian didn’t turn to see Hagelin cutting to the slot. MSL made a beautiful pass that Hagelin was able to backhand past Pavelec.

Rangers 4, Jets 2

unnamed (4)

Richards intercepted Blake Wheeler’s keep of the zone and started a rush the other way with both teams changing. Hagelin joined the rush off the bench –great timing– to make the rush a 4-on-2. Richards fed Hagelin on the far side, who beat Al Montoya through the legs to complete the hat trick. Winnipeg fans might have wanted Wheeler to get that puck deeper, but it’s hard to fault him after a shift of sustained pressure.

Fenwick Chart:

Courtesy of Extra Skater.
Courtesy of Extra Skater.

Don’t be fooled by the win. The Rangers were dominated in the puck possession department by the Jets all night. They generated more offensive chances by a wide margin in all situations. The Rangers came out on top because of one word: Goaltending. Dave Maloney said it best after Hagelin’s third goal: “It comes down to the fact that your goaltender either stopped the shot or he didn’t. (Montoya) didn’t there.” It doesn’t matter how well you play, if you can’t stop pucks, you won’t win.

Win Expectancy Chart:

Courtesy of Extra Skater.
Courtesy of Extra Skater.

When Winnipeg scored two quick goals to answer the Rangers quick first goal, their win expectancy jumped to 75%. This is largely due to the fact they were the home team though (again, these charts only use goals, time left, and home/away in their calculations so far, they are still raw). Regardless, the Rangers didn’t give up, and they fought their way back to tie the game before the period ended. Hagelin’s game winner helped the Rangers jump to a 71.2% chance of winning, and his hat trick goal gave them a 97% chance of winning.

It wasn’t pretty, but the Rangers took advantage of Winnipeg’s biggest weakness (goaltending) and got two big points in a game they needed to win. The win gives them sole possession of second place in the Metro, but they have games in hand on both Philadelphia and Columbus. They play both teams this month, but they need to first build on this win against San Jose on Sunday.

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  • Shouldn’t it be said that Columbus and Philly, having played fewer games than the Rangers, are the ones with the games in hand?

    My initial thoughts 4 minutes into last night’s game was, “great, it took the King 4 minutes to let in as many goals as mighty Talbot let in the entire game against Minny”; but he rebounded and played obviously well the rest of the way. Maybe a new streak of power goaltending has begun?

    It took me many years to appreciate Dave Maloney’s color commentating, never mind being able to even listen to him. But he is very insightful (better than Joe, who I like), and with a weird sense of humor. He seemed to be high as a kite last night too on the broadcast. Good fun. (I have several autographs of his from the late 70’s, always a good guy).

  • Great game for the team, Hags, and Kreider. Congrats to Hank for win #301, he will break Richter’s record with his next win.

    A few weeks back, I said that it appeared when Hank gives up a goal, sometimes he lets in a second one quickly, and I was laughed at. Well he did it again last night. The man can focus on a game, and then loose it, and re-gain it again. Last night was what I was refering to!!

    On another note, great to see AV finally made some changes with the lines, and both of the players involved responded with goals. It’s time for Nash, and the rest to start picking up their games a bit.

  • I don’t think anyone is happy in that photo, Dave. Seems like they’re all protesting a missed call or something. Not that it really matters, though.

    • If it’s from last night, it was probably when they took a little bit to call too many men against WPG. They eventually made the call.

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