The Rangers are primed for a deep playoff run.

No game in Montreal is dull, and the Rangers made sure we were entertained last night. Going the distance with the shootout, the Rangers got an all important point in the standings to stay as the top team in the East. Trailing 3-0, the Rangers scored three in a row to force one of the more exciting overtimes we’ve had in a while.

It has been a narrative for many years that when it comes to the Rangers franchise, it is very hard to win in Montreal. The Rangers are now 71-206-40-3 all time in Montreal, which is rather skewed because the Canadiens obviously had teams of all-time greats, but it cannot be denied that Montreal gives the Rangers fits at home.

Jonathan Quick got the start and had a couple shaky periods. He was able to lock it down and give his team a chance to tie the game up in the third. That’s all you can ask of a backup goalie who is starting to see some regression after a great start to the season. He was shaky, but good enough to get the point.

The second line of Artemi Panarin, Vincent Trocheck, and Alexis Lafrenière continued to be difference makers as the Rangers struggle to find scoring outside of that line. Trocheck had a goal and an assist, and now has 38 points in 38 games. Panarin also had a goal from a great set play off a faceoff. This line is not only the best line most nights, but it is the most consistent as well in terms of outshooting opponents and doing fairly well with the 200 foot game.

Trocheck has low key been a team MVP candidate this season. He is well on his way to an 80 point season, which would set a new career high, beating his 2017-2018 season of 75 points with the Florida Panthers.

As always, Brennan Othmann’s usage is going to be scrutinized. Othmann only had 2 shifts in the 3rd period and accumulated 7:16 of ice time. I think this is nothing more than giving Othmann a cup of coffee, much like they did with the 4 game stint they gave to Will Cuylle last year.

The Rangers don’t have the luxury of putting Othmann in the top six just yet, as they look to hold onto favorable playoff positioning. He is more than likely going to go back to the AHL when Kaapo Kakko returns from injury, which appears to be sooner rather than later. I have no worries about Othmann’s long term plans with this team. Let him return to Hartford to continue to cook in the AHL as the team gets healthier again, and come back next training camp and be the player the Rangers think he can be.

As for the Rangers, they truly miss Kakko, and he will be a welcomed sight back in the lineup. For now, the Rangers need to continue banking points in an easier portion of the schedule.

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