The Rangers lost a tough game to the Islanders Thursday night. Here are the notes.
- We should start with Martin Biron. He had a good first, a good third, a really, really good overtime, a really, really bad second and a tough shootout. The three-goal onslaught by the Islanders in the second was a tough sequence to swallow. Biron should have easily stopped goals two and three. He didn't, and the Rangers couldn't save him.
- Sticking with the bad: Brad Richards. Really tough game. Got an assist (on a great play) in the first, but was a turnover machine from that point forward. Smarter people than me have suggested removing him from the point on the power play. After Thursday I have to agree. Maybe he should be taken off the first power play unit, too. He just hasn't looked comfortable.
- J.T. Miller. I don't think he stays up. Back-to-back tough nights. I have a feeling he gets sent down. That doesn't mean, however, that I don't think he will be back. Remember it's a five-game limit, but it doesn't have to come at once. Again, I can go either way with this. Part of me wants to see him stay. The other part understands sending him down (if they do).
- I thought it was a much better game from Marian Gaborik. He scored the second goal, and had chances everywhere. He also notched an assist. He was hungry. I liked what I saw.
- Rick Nash had an incredible game without notching more than an assist. He had chance after chance but the Islanders played him really tight. When he breaks out of this goal-scoring rut he's going to be unstoppable.
- Carl Hagelin has been awesome the past five games or so, no? A huge goal (on the power play no less) and an assist. Good for him and good for the Rangers for him to get going.
- I heard a lot of people saying the Rangers tried to protect their lead again Thuraday. I don't agree. I think Biron had a rough 15 minutes and it blew a hole the Rangers needed to fill. They did fill it, but lost in the shootout. That doesn't bother me, shootouts are a crapshoot. Without Henrik Lundqvist? They're scary.
- I'll say it, but please don't turn this into another 500-comment debate: I though Derek Stepan was good.
- The Rangers are still unbeaten their last four games. And coming back from being up 2-0 to down 3-2 in the matter of 10 minutes says something about this team. They had their chances to win, too, but couldn't bury the puck.
- I don't care that Hagelin scored on the power play, it's a mess. The Rangers might need to look into bringing someone in to help (note: a coach not a player).