Rangers Recap: Will Cuylle shines in win.

What looked like a rock-bottom moment for the Rangers turned into quite the showing, scoring five straight to erase a 2-0 deficit and turn it into a 5-2 win in Anaheim. Sometimes, a team just needs to see something go in the win column, and perhaps this was that win that wakes the Rangers up. And it all started with Will Cuylle, the standout rookie for the Rangers this season.

Cuylle has never been afraid to get in on the physical part of the game. Last night was different, as he decided to take over the game in the third period. His heavy forechecking, game tying goal, and drawn penalties (that led to the game winner by Artemi Panarin) were exactly what the Rangers needed in a game they needed to win.

He won’t be a Calder winner, but he has brought an element to this team that hasn’t been around since the days of Ryan Callahan, and Cuylle has the tools to be every bit as effective as Callahan with perhaps a bit more offensive touch. Just wait until he is playing with like minded high-motor players more frequently.

On the game itself, this was not just a needed win on a disappointing road trip, but a win was massive for Igor Shesterkin’s confidence. He allowed two goals early, one to possible future Ranger Adam Henrique, but then shut it down the rest of the game. Sometimes the greats just need to see a W next to the game log to feel good about themselves.

Artemi Panarin’s game winner kept him on pace for close to 50 goals and 100 points this season. This man is the team’s MVP this season. Anytime the team needs a big goal, he has stepped up throughout the season.

When you’re slumping like the Rangers have the last little while, the wins aren’t always going to be pretty. This was a good process win. The Rangers outshot, out-possessed, and ultimately outworked the Ducks; especially in the third period. Learn from what you did in this kind of game, and take it with you and close out this pre-bye week/all-star break with some wins.


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