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Rangers Weekend Recap

New York Rangers v Arizona Coyotes Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images
  • Even though the Rangers sort of kind of still ran into some troubles on Sunday, there were all those goals I promised you after the Rangers’ shooting percentage nosedived into the abyss the previous four games. Six goals against Dallas, three against Arizona, and two wins to propel the Rangers to the top(ish) of the Metro standings.
  • Artemi Panarin’s 31st birthday was Sunday and he posted a goal and two assists to give him 15 points on the year. He continues to butter the Rangers’ bread (I’m here all week) on the power play and at 5v5, unsurprisingly.
  • But that line works for a lot of reasons. Trocheck went 2-1-3 against Dallas and had eight shots on net against Arizona. He has nine points in 10 games and has been such a motor for that group. Couple that with Panarin’s skillset and Lafreniere getting ridiculously good scoring chances (he finally finished one Sunday) and that line is just a nightmare to match up against.
  • Gallant made the right choice to go with Igor on the back-to-backs. Not just because the Rangers needed the two wins, not just because a loss to Arizona would have taken some of the air out of the sails, but because Igor wasn’t the best against Dallas and needed to get himself straight. He was much, much better against Arizona. And aside from Ryan Lindgren mishandling a poor rebound from Shesterkin, he was a rock all night.
  • Zac Jones scored his first career NHL goal and added an assist against Dallas, then followed that up with a solid 17 minutes of ice time against Arizona. I pray to the Hockey Gods this is the end of the Libor Hajek experience even though we know it isn’t.
  • David Quinn got his first win against the Rangers, Alexander Georgiev got a huge win against his former team, Vatrano scored against his former team, and Nils Lundqvist had ... probably his worst game of the year against the Rangers. Thank you for your service, Nils. (By the way he’s doing very well in Dallas and I hope that continues.)
  • Against Dallas Gallant actually adjusted his D-pairings mid-game due to things not working the way he needed them to. The Rangers got very lucky Dallas’ go-ahead goal that wasn’t was waved off due to it being offside but I do think the adjustments helped give the Rangers a little more jump and make the back end churn a little cleaner. He went back to normal pairings Sunday and it was all batter.
  • I’ll keep saying it as long as he keeps doing it: Julian Gauthier has earned a spot in this lineup.
  • Speaking of him ... all the beautiful chances he creates and misses and THAT is the one he finished??
  • Quick side note about Mullett Arena: I always loved the intimate setting of The Bank on Quinnipiac’s campus (I don’t care what it’s called now, it’s always The Bank). It isn’t large by any stretch — it fits just under 3,400 people — but during intense moments where every seat was full and the standing room only was packed to the point where you could barley walk it was as loud as MSG. It was awesome for NCAA hockey. I would wager that seeing Arizona play in Mullett would be a fantastic experience ... once or twice. I couldn’t imagine playing there 41 times, and I couldn’t imagine going there that many either. The TV cameras being lower was a bit of an adjustment too. It’s cool, in a “let’s only do this once” type of way.