Alexis Lafreniere's emergence has been a key to the Rangers success.

What a performance, what a statement, and what a rebound game for your New York Rangers. After a lighting issue delayed the game for a bit at the start of the 1st period, the Rangers got into the groove of the game.

Seattle may have scored first on a pretty good one-time chance by Justin Schultz, but the Rangers did not let that goal deflate them. Instead, the line of Artemi Panarin, Filip Chytil, and Alexis Lafrenière decided they were going to take over the game as a trio. Those were your three stars in this game as well.

I feel as if I am running out of adjectives to describe this new second line for the Rangers. Every game they are in the middle of everything offensively–creating chances, hemming the opposition in their own zone, getting shots through towards the net, and forechecking. This term gets thrown around way too loosely in the world of sports, but it really is true in this instance, they’re elite. It is evident in their play by eye-test, and they are crushing the metrics game.

Panarin had a 2-goal game, Filip Chytil had 3 assists and got the first 3 point game of his career, and Lafrenière scored off a great intercept started by him. It’s clear this is going to be Laviolette’s line to shove the offense down the opponents throat. Panarin has been getting double shifted numerous times in the season. Laviolette loves his game, and Panarin is returning the good graces with 7 points in 5 games. The swagger is back. Wonder if we can get a mulligan on him chasing Jagr’s single season points record.

Jonathan Quick took his strong play in relief on Thursday and turned it into a strong effort last night as well. He didn’t have an overtly strenuous night in the net only facing 19 shots, but he certainly silenced a few doubters with back to back strong performances. It was his first career win for the team he grew up cheering for. The few flurries of offense Seattle did surmount, Quick was there to make the saves.

This is also a shoutout to the Rangers in general for playing extremely well in front of him. We’ve brought it up in the past that the Rangers need average goaltending from their backups in order to compete. I’ll take this one-step further: This offense should be able to score enough to win games with below average backup goaltending (but not downright bad). When the bottom six begins to hit on the chemistry being developed, this team is going to be a buzzsaw.

Final thought on the evening, a pretty good scuffle occurred in the third period when Yanni Gourde and Adam Fox got tangled up in front of the Rangers bench and everyone got involved on the ice. This is a true team so far this year. They are not only scoring goals and winning hockey games all while adjusting to this new system, they are fighting together too.

How about Vincent Trocheck absolutely beat the brakes off of Jared McCann on the subsequent face-off? The vibes are immaculate, and there are no real detriments to the team at the moment. Just solid hockey.


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