Rangers Vs. Jets: That Was Ugly, But Two Points Are Two Points
Notes from the Rangers win over the Jets.
- I don't know who had a bigger impact in this game between Carl Hagelin and Henrik Lundqvist, but I know which player the Rangers wouldn't have won without, and that's Lundqvist. He made some spectacular saves, including what might be the save of the year when the Rangers were clinging to that one-goal lead midway through the third and Hank came across his crease to rob a wide open Michael Frolik. Serious "holy crap" stuff from him.
- Of course you can't discount Hagelin's impact in the game. There just wouldn't have been such a close contest without Lundqvist. But good for Hagelin -- who has certianly struggled the past two games -- to break out and score three immense goals. The Rangers need more scoring from across their lineup, I don't think anyone is questioning that, and some of the burden (read: some) does fall on Hagelin.
- And give Martin St. Louis a lot of credit, too. He's struggled quite a bit in these five games in terms of goal scoring, and some of that has to do with luck while some does have to do with him pressing. Another Grade-A scoring chance last night when he broke in alone but was stopped at the last minute. However, that pass to Hagelin for the Rangers third goal with eight seconds left in the second? Brilliant. That's why he's here. What a game.
- Chris Kreider scored a huge goal, too, and he's another player that's starting to find his pre-Olympic rhythm. His goal (off a perfect feed from Derek Stepan, may I add) was a great example of the type of player he's going to be. Used his speed to break around the defender and just released a lethal shot that knotted the game.
- Haven't seen many people talking about Stepan recently. Nine points his last seven games, 46 points on the season, and a chance to break 60 points after his early season struggles.
- Same thing about Lundqvist. Where are all the people panicking over that deal now?
- This is one of those games where you walk away knowing you don't deserve the two points. The Rangers got manhandled in the third period, and if it wasn't for Henrik Lunqvist, they would have lose 10-2. Seriously. The Jets were getting prime chances all over the ice, and Lundqvist just threw on his Superman Cape and shut them down.
- But, two points are two points. And the Rangers' offense did find a way to finish the game off and get them. Now the Rangers have a two point lead over Columbus for second with two more ROWs, but the Blue Jackets have two games in hand. That's why you can't lose to Carolina three games ago, but again, it's in the past.
- By the way, last night was a little more emotional for me than I thought, and it was kind of out of left field. I told you guys before I was a huge Mike Richter fan as a kid. He was my favorite player when I was growing up. Last night Lundqvist earned win number 301, tying his record. It kind of made me think about how long ago Richter was, how good he would have been if the Rangers weren't so terrible throughout his career and if he didn't get hurt. But then I realized something else. Lundqvist was the pillar behind the Rangers becoming relevant again (well, with Jaromir Jagr, too), helped me stop getting made fun of for being a Rangers fan as a kid, and gave me more memories than I can count with my Dad, friends, family and all of you psychos. He's ben my favorite player for so long I actually started to take him for granted. If anyone was going to break the record, I'm glad it will be him.