This was not one of the prettier victories of the New York Rangers current 7 game winning streak, but there are no style points in the NHL, and the Rangers will happily take their 4-1 win over the hapless Maple Leafs at the Air Canada Centre tonight.
Henrik Lundqvist made 34 saves and Marc Staal and Enver Lisin both scored their first goals of the season to lead the Rangers. Brandon Dubinsky and Michael Del Zotto also added tallies for the Rangers, who are now 7-1 so far this season. Dubinsky's goal was his 3rd of the season, but first since the 2nd game of the season against Ottawa.
For Del Zotto, the incredible start to the season for him continues, his second period goal was his 3rd of the season, and he now has 8 points, which is tops among NHL rookies. His parents were once again in attendance to see Zots pick up a goal. He might want to start bringing them everywhere the Rangers play.
The Leafs played much better in this game than in the 7-2 beating the Rangers handed them on Monday night at Madison Square Garden. The home team carried the play for much of the night, outshooting the Rangers 35-28 for the game. As mleetch said in the open game thread, the Rangers effort tonight can best described as "workman like"
Two concerns coming out of this game for the Rangers. One, they are still taking too many penalties. The Rangers found themselves shorthanded six times in the game. Only Toronto's severe lack of offensive ability kept the Leafs from capitalizing on the man advantage.
The other concern is that the Rangers continued to let opposing teams take runs at Henrik Lundqvist. Henrik was knocked over several times, with no retribution. This is something the Rangers are going to have to address soon, whether it be internally or externally. You simply cannot have your MVP as a sitting duck.
The Rangers 7-1 start is the best in team history. They will travel back to Madison Square Garden to face the San Jose Sharks.
Rangers vs Maple Leafs coverage
Rangers vs Maple Leafs boxscore
Blueshirt Banter Star of the Game:
#30 / Goalie / New York Rangers
Mar 02, 1982