Rangers Vs. Devils: Getting Closer

Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

Notes from the Rangers win over the Devils.

- This was a huge game from the New York Rangers on so many different levels. The Rangers were at home, going up against a team that knocked their Stanley Cup chances out the window last year, with a chance to return the favor and keep the Devils out of the playoffs this year. They did that with a 4-1 win over the Devils. That's a huge win. A huge two points. And right now, points are more important than anything else.

- I think it's worth mentioning up top, Brad Richards is starting to heat up. Maybe it's just him getting lucky for three games, or maybe he got a little lucky and now his confidence is rising and he's starting to figure everything out. Because the reality is, he's been really, really good the past two games. He's putting up points to boot, and is making sure he takes care of the puck. The Rangers can use him right now, and he's answered.

- Derek Stepan had a goal and an assist and now has an many points as Rick Nash. He's really developed into a quality player for the Rangers. Patience with youth is so much better than unrealistic expectations and no patience. He's showing you why.

- I loved Ryane Clowe Sunday. Even though he didn't get on the scoresheet I thought he was physical, good down low and had a couple of quality chances. He fights every second of every shift. The Rangers needed more of that. They got it with his acquisition.

- Derick Brassard had a good game again. I think he's been active since he got here, but sometimes he doesn't show up on the scoresheet because his passes aren't finished. I think he needs to shoot the puck more sometimes, but he's been really, really good for the Rangers.

- Speaking of trades, John Moore. How good has this kid been? We've talked about his skating enough, but he earned some power play time Sunday, and he didn't look out of place there at all.

- Henrik Lundqvist was Henrik Lundqvist. That about sums it up for him. He's an animal, so competitive that the goal the Devils scored pissed him off, and is continuing to save the Rangers' bacon when they need him.

- The Rangers have to go 2-1 in their last three games (assuming the Winnipeg Jets win all three of their final games) to secure a playoff spot. The Rangers are tied in points with the Ottawa Senators for 7th but the Senators have a game in hand. The Rangers are a point behind the New York Islanders in 6th and even in games played. Things are going to get interesting if either of those two teams lose.

- Ryan Callahan had two goals, five hits, a block and 23 minutes worth of ice time. His goal less than a minute in was huge for the Rangers to keep their confidence up.

- 18 goals in the past three games. Let that one sink in.

- Rangers go back at it on Tuesday against the Florida Panthers. That one will probably be a must-win, too.

Thoughts?

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