Andreas Athanasiou scored a pair of goals for the Red Wings as they topped the Rangers 3-2 in regulation. The game was actually 3-1 thanks to Athanasiou’s second, an empty netter, but Brendan Smith scored with less than ten seconds remaining to cut the lead to one. Ryan Strome had the other tally for the Rangers. Kevin Shattenkirk, Pavel Buchnevich, Brett Howden, and Neal Pionk all notched assists.
The loss doesn’t directly impact the standings, at least not for the Rangers. Detroit gains two points and may climb out of a bottom-three spot. The Rangers, meanwhile still have just one win since the trade deadline. However the Blueshirts did control this game for the most part. Remember that Detroit isn’t that good, and it was all Jimmy Howard for the Wings. Per usual, Howard brought his A-game to MSG for the win.
Wings 1, Rangers 0
Frans Nielsen got past John Gilmour, who was harassing him big time, and managed to fend him off before tucking one past Henrik Lundqvist.
Wings 2, Rangers 0
Brady Skjei made a really bad pinch here, which sprung Jacob de la Rose with Athanasiou for a 2-on-1. Kevin Shattenkirk overcommitted a bit to the shot –remember when Steve Valiquette mentioned that if you have two feet in the circle, you’re too far over?– and de la Rose made the perfect pass for Athanasiou to bury it.
Wings 2, Rangers 1
Ryan Strome was in front to tuck in the rebound off Shattenkirk’s shot. Nothing crazy here, just good positioning, and a good shot by Shattenkirk to get it through.
Wings 3, Rangers 1
Athanasiou empty netter.
Wings 3, Rangers 2
Pionk’s slapper from the point was a bouncing one, which Howard had trouble controlling. Smith was in front for the rebound.
Good for the Rangers, but they ran into Howard. Would be nice if they limited those slot chances though.
The Blueshirts have three days off before they play again on Saturday. That begins a rough stretch of four games against playoff teams. We might not see them get a point for the rest of the month.
I kid, of course. We know they are going to get a few of these games to OT before losing in a shootout.