After a pitiful start that had fans re-opening their baseball schedules, the Rangers roared back with three goals in the second period, added one in the third and were able to hold off the Islanders tonight 4-3 at Nassau Coliseum.
When you fall behind 2-0 in the first, it helps to be playing a
Henrik Lundqvist was not at his best tonight, letting in a couple of soft goals, but for one of the few times this season the Rangers managed to bail him out when he wasn't on top of his game.
Mark "Matzos by" Streit (excuse the old SNL reference) opened the scoring for the Islanders just two minutes into the game while Vinny Prospal was serving a too many men penalty. Blake Comeau gave the Isles a 2-0 lead later in the period.
John Tortorella reportedly ripped into his lethargic
Prospal got the Rangers going in the middle period scoring with a shot that beat "Rollie the Goalie" to his right. Olli Jokinen tied the game later in the period, and then Marian Gaborik became the Rangers first forty goal scorer since Jaromir Jagr in 2005-06, putting the Rangers ahead to stay.
The Rangers also had to kill off a 5-on-3 in the second period, and did it beautifully, only allowing the Isles two shots on goal with the two man advantage.
Marc Staal scored five minutes into the third, and the Rangers held off a late Isles rally after Comeau scored his second of the game.
Unfortunately the news for the Rangers wasn't all good tonight, as Boston and Atlanta both won their games. The Bruins remain four points ahead of the Rangers, the Thrashers two points. The Rangers and Bruins both have a game at hand on Atlanta.
Rangers vs Islanders boxscore