The well-rested New York Rangers absolutely throttled a tired Montreal Canadiens team from start to finish on Sunday night at MSG. Henrik Lundqvist earned his 4th shutout of the season, the defense was tight, and the team thrived on quick transitions, carry-in attacks and rush chances coming at Habs' goaltender Dustin Tokarski. The Habs had no answers for the thrashing, and the eventual 5-0 win could've been much worse than even that score indicated. Truly a complete effort with contributions from every forward. Literally, every forward earned a point. Yes, even The Nutritionist. It is the first time since 1980 that has happened. [Blueshirt Banter] [Rangers Unlimited] [Blueshirts United] [NY Rangers Blog] [NY Daily News] [NY Post] [NY Times] [The Hockey Writers]
The shot attempt battle was decidedly in the Rangers' favor all night:
There were lots of records set and notable achievements last night. Did you know this was the first time all season the Rangers have won two straight games? [North Jersey Blog]
Will the real New York Rangers please stand up? [The Hockey Writers]
As much as I pointed out that the Canadiens are a paper tiger, this was still a confidence boosting win. [Blueshirt Banter]
Marc Staal: "I don't think it was much of a statement for us. We did what we had to do. They are coming off a back-to-back."— Andrew Gross (@AGrossRecord) November 24, 2014
Anthony Duclair had an absolutely insane assist on Sunday night to set up Carl Hagelin's goal. That line, centered by Kevin Hayes, was a pleasure to watch all game. Really, watch this:
Henrik Lundqvist was sent to the ice later in the game by former teammate Brandon Prust. He was slow to get up, but ultimately fine. Do the Rangers lack toughness because Prust felt it was ok to hit the King? No. That's stupid. First of all, Prust stopped. He held up when Hank was way out of his net, and his comfort zone, to play the puck. It wasn't accidentally on purpose or anything else. It was just a bang bang play where a player with a reputation for playing dirty happened to bump the King of all Goaltenders. These things happen in hockey, and of course Lundqvist was diplomatic about it. [North Jersey]
I don't really know what this article is trying to say about Jesper Fast. But it says something. Some quotes from AV on how Fast, and the other youngsters, have played. [NY Post]
Martin St. Louis knows that he might not get the warmest welcome from Tampa Bay Lightning fans when the Rangers visit them on Wednesday. He had a careers-worth of memories there, and too many accomplishments to count. But he left on what some consider to be bad terms. Something tells me he will be just fine. [NY Post]
One thing is for sure, Marty still has plenty left in the tank. [The Hockey News] So about that cap-friendly extension?
Despite skating, McDonagh still isn't skating with the team in full practice. Yours truly already said that shoulders are fickle injuries and two weeks was a very optimistic prediction. There is no timetable on when he will practice with the team and when exactly he actually will return. [NY Post]
Kevin Klein may be the Rangers unsung hero. [isportsweb]
HOT TAKE ALERT: Larry Brooks thinks J.T. Miller is an answer for wing depth that the Rangers have not tapped yet. I don't mind the fact that he thinks Miller should be moved to the wing right now, in the AHL. I actually kind of agree. However, the Rangers aren't exactly swimming in center depth, as the Stepan injury made abundantly clear. Miller isn't a lost cause there at such a young age. He isn't being "wasted" yet, in my opinion. It is fair to want Miller to get a shot, and wing might be the path of least resistance. But let's not make up a narrative to fit the conclusion. Miller is decidedly not a winger with "size, speed and grit [in] his game." Those are his words, not mine. If anything, Miller most often plays small and is much more comfortable with the finesse contributions of his game than he is with his defensive responsibilities and loose puck work. [NY Post]
Oh and Odell Beckham Jr. caught a football. Happy Monday!