The New York Rangers dropped their sixth game of the season tonight as they were defeated 2-1 by the Philadelphia Flyers. Cam Talbot played very well in his NHL debut, and kept the Rangers in the game right up until the final buzzer. Unfortunately, scoring has been hard to come by for the Rangers with the likes of Rick Nash, Carl Hagelin, and Ryan Callahan all absent from the lineup.
While these past few losses can't be solely based on missing those three players, it definitely doesn't help that three of your top-six players are missing either. Anyways, the Rangers and Flyers both had slow starts to the game, and neither team was able to get much going in the beginning half of the first period. The Rangers finally got their first opportunity to cash in with a power play, but it actually wound up working against them.
Derick Brassard bobbled a pass back at the blue line, and coughed it up to Matt Read, who was able to break in all alone. With Michael Del Zotto cutting off the cross ice pass, Read ripped a low shot through the legs of Cam Talbot, and the Flyers took a 1-0 lead at the mid way point of the first period.
With just under two minutes remaining in the third period, the Rangers put some serious pressure on the Flyers, and were able to generate a solid forecheck. Brad Richards would eventually pick up a loose puck in the corner, and tossed it on net from the far corner. Steve Mason wasn't prepared for the shot, and was caught hanging off of his post, and Richards was able to sneak it through.
With both teams tied heading into the second period, emotions started to fly. With about five minutes remaining in the second period, there was a gathering in front of the benches, which resulted in some punches being thrown. Brandon Mashinter and Wayne Simmonds would go at it, while Derek Dorsett and Braydon Coburn came together at the other end.
As if it that was enough, two minutes later, Benoit Pouliot and Maxime Talbot came together in an ugly situation. With both players fighting for position, Talbot wound up losing his footing, and slammed head first into the boards. It didn't appear as if there was any malicious intent from Pouliot, and it was just a freak accident. Even looking at the replay, Pouliot also appeared to grab the back of Talbot's jersey in an attempt to stop him from smashing into the boards.
Accident or not, the call on the ice was a game misconduct, and it's hard to argue with that. I don't think Pouliot will be suspended for it either, as it was something he couldn't really control. Luckily Talbot was able to return to the game after getting patched up in the locker room.
All that aside, the Rangers had one final period to muster up some scoring, and came up short. Braydon Coburn was able to capitalize on an early misread in the defensive zone, and put the Flyers back on top 2-1. A few minutes later, the Rangers appeared to of tied the game on a goal coming from J.T. Miller. Brian Boyle flicked a shot on net which Steve Mason wound up poking out front, and it went in off of Miller's skate.
The call on the ice was a goal, but upon further review in Toronto, it was deemed that Miller moved his skate back in order to make contact with the puck, which resulted in no goal. It's just the type of luck the Rangers have been having this season, and they just can't seem to catch a break.
After a late flurry in the offensive zone, with Talbot pulled, the Rangers weren't able to put the tying goal past Mason, and the Flyers took the game by the score of 2-1. The Rangers will be off tomorrow before they head into Detroit, where they will close out their nine game road stand before coming home Monday to play their home opener at Madison Square Garden.