NEW YORK RANGERS POST-GAME NOTES AND QUOTES
October 3, 2009 - New York Rangers 5, Ottawa Senators 2 (Game #2, Home #1)
- The Rangers opened their 2009-10 regular season home schedule with a 5-2 win over the Senators, in front of a sold-out crowd (18,200) at Madison Square Garden.
- The win marks the Rangers fifth straight in their Garden opener, which is a new franchise record.
- New York has sold out 157 consecutive regular season games, dating back to November 5, 2005 against New Jersey; the last regular season non-sellout was October 31, 2005 vs. Montreal (17,697); including the playoffs, the Rangers sellout streak is now at 171 games.
- The Blueshirts improved to 1-1-0 overall, including a 1-0-0 mark at home; the Rangers are in the midst of a five-game home winning streak dating back to last season, and are 9-1-0 in their last 10 regular season games at MSG.
- Michael Del Zotto tallied his first career NHL goal, the game-winner, at 19:09 of the second period; At 19 years 101 days old, he is the first teenager to score a goal for the Rangers since Manny Malhotra (1998-99), and the second youngest defenseman in team history to accomplish the feat behind Red Garrett (18 years 154 days).
- Vinny Prospal opened the game's scoring at 3:20 of the second period; the goal was Prospal's 600th career NHL point, and he is now one goal shy of 200 career NHL goals.
- Brandon Dubinsky led all skaters with two goals and three points in 22:36 of icetime; the two goals and three points tied his career-highs.
- Marian Gaborik finished with one goal and two points; he has now tallied a goal in back-to-back contests after notching a goal in his Rangers debut last night at Pittsburgh.
- Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist made 32 saves, including 19 in the second period, to register his first win of the season.
- Six New York skaters recorded one assist in the contest - Dan Girardi, Marc Staal, Christopher Higgins, Chris Drury, Michal Rozsival, and Enver Lisin; Lisin's assist was his first point as a Ranger.
- The Blueshirts have an optional practice scheduled for tomorrow, October 4 (1:00 p.m.), at the MSG Training Center.
- The Rangers return to action on Monday, October 5, when they will face-off against the New Jersey Devils at the Prudential Center (7:00 p.m.); the game will be nationally televised on Versus and can be heard on 1050 ESPN Radio.
Lots more after the jump......
John Tortorella on tonight's game...
"We need to button up some things along the way here. We have got young defense. After the first period we couldn't convert on the power play, we have to say with it. We are giving away too many chances against. But those are correctable things. I thought that the team played hard in a back-to-back. We scored some important goals. I thought that the most important play of the game was Cally (Ryan Callahan) screening the goalie on the third goal. It's a work in progress. We still have a lot of work to do, but I am happy at the way that they stayed with it and found a way to win the hockey game."
Brandon Dubinsky on the offense...
"Certainly we have opportunities and we have to continue to capitalize on those chances. I thought we did good tonight. We just have to continue to do it. With our offense, the attack we have, we are going to create those chances. We have to score some goals."
Michael Del Zotto on his first career goal...
"I can't even put it in words, it was an unbelievable feeling. I have to give credit to my teammates, my line mates. Cally (Ryan Callahan) provided a great screen, Higgins made a great pass and it happened to go in. I was pretty excited. I saw my mom was crying in the stands, she is pretty emotional. It makes it that much sweeter knowing they were here and they were proud of me. It is a great feeling."
While it will be months before the Rangers know whether Brandon Dubinsky can be a number one center in the NHL, after his performance tonight at Madison Square Garden, it would be unwise to bet against him.
Dubinsky had two goals and an assist, and the Rangers dominated the Senators, 5-2, in New York's home opener at Madison Square Garden and Ottawa's first game of the season.
Marian Gaborik added a goal and an assist and now has three points in two games since signing a free agent contract with the Rangers, who were defeated by the Stanley Cup champion Penguins on Friday in their season opener. Vinny Prospal scored his first goal with New York since also coming over in the offseason, while Michael Del Zotto notched his first NHL goal in the win.
- Vinny Prospal's goal gave him 600 points for his career
- This was Brandon Dubinsky's second 2 goal game, with both of them coming in the Rangers last three regular season games. Dubinsky had 2 goals in the regular season finale against the Flyers in April.
Blueshirt Banter Star of the Game: