The New York Rangers (20-16-4) defeated the Toronto Maple Leafs (22-13-5) by the score of 3-2 in a shootout, tonight. For a box score go to Yahoo! Sports.
…so that game took 10 years off my life. I cannot understand how this team can come out with so little emotion and passion in such a big game. Sadly it was way too reminiscent of earlier this season. But got to give them credit for hanging in there and slowly changing the momentum back in their favor and picking up two titanic points.
…and how did the momentum begin to change? With a fight. I find it baffling that so many fans still refuse to admit that fighting can be such a huge part of the game and turn the outcome the way it did tonight. Big props to Clowe for knowing the team needed a spark. The Rangers didn't have someone who could do that pre-trade deadline.
…also helps to have Lundqvist back there. These last two weeks, he has put the team on his back and put them in position to get back into the post-season.
…McDonagh doing his best "Irish Jig" at the blueline before scoring his fourth goal of the season. Didn't know he had moves like that.
…Zuccarello earned a ton of respect in my book tonight as he didn't back down from Phaneuf once. Heck, he even went after Phaneuf and called him "another way to call a cat a kitten" after the Toronto defenseman high sticked him in the face.
…i was dizzy by the end of the game after all those line changes. The new guys must be like, "what the hell is this guy Torts doing?"
…even I couldn't find a way to blame Del Zotto for Girardi failing to keep the puck in the zone leading to Toronto's tying goal.
…so apparently insomnia suits Boyle's game well. He was all over the ice tonight.
…a paltry 38% on faceoffs for the Rangers tonight.
…remember last year when Richards would bury those late game chances to win games? Now they glance harmlessly off the goaltender's pads.
…much better defensively than the last game, but still way too many breakdowns.
…Pyatt almost officially phased out of the Rangers line-up after just 4:51 of ice time tonight.
…i got to tell you, as soon as this game was over, I immediately started salivating about Saturday night's game on Long Island. I don't think these two teams have played a game this big against each other since the first round of the playoffs in 1994. Really hoping this is the defining game that resurrects this once great rivalry.