Rangers Vs. Canucks: FinaLouis! (Also Ryan McDonagh Panic)

Derek Leung

Notes from the Rangers' win over the Canucks.

- I don't know why I want to make this clear, but I feel like I should. I didn't hate John Tortorella. In fact, there were many, many instances where I loved him as a coach. However, I do agree he wore out his welcome and I do agree he wasn't the right guy to get the Rangers over the hump. But to blame him solely for the problems they're having in Vancouver is insane. And as the game went on, I actually ended up feeling really bad for him. So, yeah.

- And for the most important part of that game -- the Ryan McDonagh injury -- I don't have any information so I'm not going to speculate much. What I will say is it looked bad. Some of that might be because of who it was (the most important player on the team not named Henrik Lundqvist) and when it happened, though. Keep in mind that after the game Larry Brooks reported a Rangers' spokesperson said it "wasn't serious." Still, it wouldn't shock me if this was long term, either.

- A lot of people were pissed the Rangers didn't retaliate the hit, especially since it came from a player with that kind of history. I don't remember where I saw it, but someone found a clip of Dan Carcillo saying something to Alain Vigneault after the hit happened and Vigneault shook his head. My guess is Carcillo was asking if he should pay the Canucks back, and Vigneault said no. I actually like the decision not to. I can't believe I'm saying this, but Carcillo is an important part of this team and he can't be getting suspended over something that already happened.

- He's important because the fourth line is important. The Rangers need to make sure they take care of them this summer, especially is they have extra money from a Brad Richards buyout. No need to fix something that isn't broken, and yes, that includes Carcillo, too.

- "I told you he belonged on the first line," Alain Vigneault about Carcillo, probably.

- Lundqvist deserves a lot of credit for this win. He was fantastic, especially when the Rangers were pinned in their own zone for an extended period of time. He was shape all game, and made sure the Canucks didn't make their way back into the contest late.

- Derick Brassard has really come around, and his pass to Benoit Pouliot for the Rangers' second goal (a power play goal, no less) was fantastic. He's such a big part of this offense that it's easy to overlook him, but the Rangers don't have many guys who can dish the puck like he does. Mats Zuccarello can. Derek Stepan can. That's it.

- And, of course, how could we forget Martin St. Louis finally getting his first goal as a Ranger (and his 30th of the year). Did you see his reaction? It was more "sighs of relief" than "celebrate the goal." It was a Hell of a shot though. Hopefully that gets him going.

- The power play looks good. The penalty kill looks better. I tweeted this a few games ago but it's relevant now, too. "Is it bad the Rangers' penalty kill is more lethal than the power play?"

- Aside from McDonagh, the next most important part of the game was the two points, which the Rangers got in regulation again. Both the Flyers and the Blue Jackets lost in overtime, so both only grabbed one point. The Rangers are three points ahead of Philadelphia and seven points ahead of Columbus. Do keep in mind, though, the Rangers have three more ROW than the Flyers and six more ROW than Columbus, so a tie in either case will most likely go to the Rangers.

Thoughts?

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