In the mid-1800s, American's flocked to the West in search of gold. After the early part of the Rangers' 2013-2014, the team was more than content to get the heck out of the West and return homeward where they were hoping for better result. On Wednesday night, the team took a big step in the right direction, blanking the Capitals 2-0 on the road. John Moore scored his first goal of the season, and the captain, Ryan Callahan, gave the Rangers a much needed second goal less than two minutes later. In short, this what exactly what the Rangers were looking for. Here are your morning notes.
Much has been made of team defense and goals allowed during the sub-par start to the season. If fans were looking for the Rangers to take a step in the right direction, this game was a huge indicator. A much more organized defensive effort, with only 22 shots on goal allows (and 22 credited blocked shots), a great penalty kill (including grinding out 55 seconds of a 5-on-3), and a much more aggressive group overall. And of course, in the midst of a three-game losing streak, needing to turn in a strong performance (as he always seemingly does against Washington) Henrik Lundqvist was Henrik Lundqvist. Some recaps from the game. [Blueshirt Banter] [Daily News] [Blueshirts United] [Newsday] [New York Post]
With Alain Vigneault's tenure beginning in New York, the Rangers have been adjusting to the coach's new systems. Brad Richards said the team has been adapting slowly. [New York Post]
Some more from Brad Richards, who said he's playing comfortably alongside Ryan Callahan. [Rangers Rants]
Whenever Rick Nash returns, he'll still be a fixture of the team. Here's what the Rangers need out of him. [Blueshirt Banter]