Game Wrap-ups

Rangers finally get a win at home, eliminate Flyers from playoff contention

mats zuccarello
Photo: Jim McIsaac

The Rangers finally managed to get a win at home, scoring four straight on Anthony Stolarz and the Flyers en route to the 4-3 win. The win also eliminated the Flyers from playoff contention, so feel free to poke fun at a Flyers fan today. It was nice to see the forecheck in full swing for the Rangers, who also had a pretty solid defensive game as well. The Flyers aren’t the best team in the world, but proper process has to start somewhere.

Henrik Lundqvist played another strong game. Despite the rough goals against lately, he’s been locked in for a while. The difference was the better overall team commitment to defense, something that had been lacking up and down the lineup. The Rangers also had their forecheck going, which allowed them to convert turnovers into goals often.

The game wasn’t perfect, as the Blueshirts almost gave it back to the Flyers with two minutes left in the game. They allowed the Flyers to get two goals to make us sweat. But Hank made a brilliant glove save to preserve the win.

On to the goals:

Flyers 1, Rangers 0

Michael Grabner and Jimmy Vesey got crossed up at the blue line, leading to a turnover. Jordan Weal got the puck down to Valtteri Filppula. Wayne Simmonds put a nice pick on Marc Staal to give Filppula room. Kevin Hayes was slow to the back check, as Kevin Klein was tying up his man at the back door. Filppula roofed a backhand over Lundqvist. That is a very difficult shot to stop.

Rangers 1, Flyers 1

The powerplay clicked again. This time Mats Zuccarello fed a perfect pass from the boards to Mika Zibanejad at the top of the circle across the Royal Road. Zibanejad teed it up and fired it over Stolarz.

Rangers 2, Flyers 1

Zuccarello did it again. What a pass to Brendan Smith, who went around Stolarz and roofed it on the backhand for his first as a Ranger.

Rangers 3, Flyers 1

Kreider got in on the forecheck, forcing the Flyers into a bad turnover, in which Dan Girardi was able to keep the zone. Eventually Zuccarello got the puck in front, which Girardi was able to get a stick on the bouncing puck. Oscar Lindberg, who was also crashing the net, got two whacks at it, the second one getting through Stolarz.

Rangers 4, Flyers 1

The Flyers made a bad turnover, which led to Brady Skjei keeping the zone. Skjei got it to Derek Stepan low, who put the puck on net. Kreider made a nice deflection past Stolarz.

Rangers 4, Flyers 2

Reason 8,341,532,434 why you get out of the way of point shots. Just let Hank see it. Nick Holden made a poor decision here.

Rangers 4, Flyers 3

This was not good 6-on-5 play by the Rangers. Right before the Jakub Voracek shot, all five Rangers are on the right side of the ice. Voracek was at the left point, and that left Valtteri Filppula all alone at the post. He got a stick on the shot, which prevented Hank from stopping it clean. He then roofed his own rebound.

Score Adjusted Corsi

This wasn’t a dominating shot attempt performance by the Rangers, but not all games need to be. They came out on top, and showed that even with a lead they won’t back down. That likely plays into their success in the third period all season, and it is promising to see them pour it on with a lead.

What is worrisome is that collapse at the end though. The Rangers don’t do that often, so hopefully just a blip.

Scoring Chances (it has returned!)

The scoring chance charts finally got added back, so hooray!

The first period was a little rough for the Rangers, since they allowed a decent amount of chances. But they woke up in the second, and there are long stretches of the Flyers being limited to the outside. That’s the defense you want to see the Rangers play, minus the last five minutes or so. Keep the scoring chances to a minimum, and convert on the counter attack.

This was a solid win for a Rangers team that really needed a strong performance. The Blueshirts had been struggling mightily for the past six weeks. With this win without Ryan McDonagh, they can hopefully begin turning the corner and gaining momentum for a run.

"Rangers finally get a win at home, eliminate Flyers from playoff contention", 5 out of 5 based on 1 ratings.
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  1. Rangers played a solid game. Must say that Hayes and Grabner were invisible most of the night. Nash and Zucc were strong and 4th line gave good shifts.

    Brady still needs work on PP as he often throws soft passes and thinks he can carry end to end. It will take time. A real test comes against the Capitals as the are firing on all cylinders.

    Girardi looked good and bad, but so did Holden. I think Smith and Staal were solid.

  2. It is noteworthy that the Rangers have clinched the #1 Wildcard. They can’t finish in 3rd place even if they win out (to finish with 106 points) and Columbus finishes with a pointless streak because the Rangers cannot exceed the 47 ROW that Columbus has and the Jackets won the season series 6-4.

  3. The best thing about last night is that Filthadelphia lost, and is out of the PO’s !!!

    Now the new season begins…….

  4. Solid encouraging win. although against a rookie goalkeeper. Zucc was the man, obviously, most of the night, Nash was solid and I thought Girardi was strong all night. OK maybe a bad pass or two. The final two periods were really the Rangers pretty much at their skating best, exposing the Flyers’ defense for what it is. Last two goals, I don’t care. The team let down, simple. Won’t happen in the playoffs.

    Get healthy, get Grabner going (what is going on there?) and it should be an interesting April, if nothing else. I’m not too worried about Wednesday night at Washington; they won’t see the Caps for a while anyway. If the Rangers get to the second round, let’s worry about it then.

    Best news of the week- Islanders are pretty much done.

    Enjoy your week, everyone. Regards- orange

    1. Grabner showing why he is on a 2 year $1.6M cap hit contract. He’s not a career 20% scorer 🙂

    1. I missed them too. Were they played after 10pm? Because if they were none of the bloggers for the NYR can stay up that late, so we would have no reports!! ??

      Anyhow, theCaps first round is no longer going to be such a sweetheart deal, and the Pens better get healthy real soon or else CBJ could roll.

      Tee it up,Flyers, Tee it up. Icelanders already booking Bethpage Black!

      1. I think this is a half-wit reply to my post, where I said Columbus won the season series 6-4. I anticipated people here understood that I was referencing the points earned between the two teams since the tie-breaker is stated as, “The greater number of points earned in games between the tied clubs”. In theory, Columbus could have gone 3-2 while the Rangers went 2-1-2 in the series which would have given each club 6 points. That would have sent it to the 3rd tie-breaker which would have removed the first game in NY between the two (a 3-2 Rangers win) since there were three games in NY.

  5. 1ST Period Game #1

    Spring Kreider full speed ahead and just get it over with, crash price hard, let the series begin!


    Beating the Habs, their Fans, and that Canadian favoritism is all I need this year…

    Please Hockey Gods… Give us this series!

  6. A series against the Habs is the key to going deep , we need to beat them first to have any sort of chance to anywhere from there .Hank does not do well in Montreal or against them as well . Pittsburgh and Columbus should be a blood bath , it has become a great rivalry, Dubie and the kid . If you can rile the kid it takes away from his game and he is not the same .

  7. So in the NHL it is my understanding a HIT is when you check the opposition player who has the puck with your body and your team ends up with control of the puck. Meaning they had the puck, now we got the puck. This is a good thing yes. You stats guys, how many times in the past few years has someone not named Glass done this? Keeping in mind TOI, …. just saying … can we get an atta boy Tanner for a pretty common occurrence for him when he gets that much ice time. I did not see the game so am going off the game stats.

    1. I don’t believe gaining control of the puck has anything to do with a hit. While, this is usually the goal, there isn’t any sort of strong correlation that has been documented between a hit and a possession change. So all we really learn if a hit is recorded for your team is that you did not have control of the puck to begin with. So the more hits you have, the less your team has the puck….as you wouldn’t be hitting anyone had your team had the puck in the first place.

      This is the “new school” stat interpretation of a hit, which obvious is very different from the more traditional “hits are good” mantra. I am all about hits, as they absolutely are an effective, integral and exciting part of the game. However, even the most staunch fans of the physical aspect of the game should admit that a ton of hits can tell you which has the puck more than the other one.

      1. A statistical hit is when a defensive player initiates contact with the puck carrier and he loses possession. It doesn’t need to result in a turnover for it to be a hit. Example of a hit: Player A checks Player B and loses possession of the puck, which is then possessed by Player C. It doesn’t matter which team Player C plays for, so it might not be a turnover.

        1. The word “hit” is not defined anywhere in the NHL Rule Book. In reality — and in common usage — the “hit” is simply a synonym for the word “check”, with some reserving “hit” for a particularly hard check. There is likely little disagreement on this from the perspective of common understanding. Unfortunately, that understanding has nothing to do with the statistic. There a hit is what ever I say it is … LOL

    2. The definition of a hit varies by the home arena scorer. Unfortunately, there is no consistency in the stat.

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