The last time these two teams met on October 19, it was the New Jersey Devils who blanked the New York Rangers 4-0 in a game that was barely a contest. This time around, the effort was better but the end result didn't change as New Jersey edged New York on a late goal by Dainius Zubrus, 3-2.
Let's get to the recap, shall we?
– Chalk this game up to a game where the last lucky bounce won the game. Both team had their fair share of fortunes and misfortunes, but in the end it was the Devils who were good enough to come away with two points.
– What you do have to like is the Rangers' continued response to giving up goals. Especially on NJ's first goal tonight. NY came right down the ice and notched the tying goal. It's a trait good teams possess.
– Mats Zuccarello (2 goals, 8 assists in last 10 games) is playing like a man who doesn't want to come out when Rick Nash gets healthy. Props to him pissing off Marty Brodeur tonight as well.
– Beniot Pouliot is, however, playing like a man who wants to take a seat. Another awful offensive zone penalty and will be a easy scratch for AV.
– Speaking of the head coach, AV recently challenged his defense to start contributing more offensively. Marc Staal and Dan Girardi scored their first goals of the season tonight. Ryan McDonagh has had seven points in his last seven games and had his chances tonight.
– I'm sure a lot of people are thinking the Rangers are back to the garbage power play from season's past, but tonight credit the Devils and their PK. They were aggressive all night and didn't allow NYR to carry the puck in, negating any set up.
– Not winning faceoffs never helps either.
– Chris Kreider notched 2 more assists tonight and, if not for a bouncing puck, would've had a goal on his second period mini-breakaway. He hasn't let up one bit since his recall and has added a physical edge to his game. Great things.
– Henrik Lundqvist made some brilliant saves tonight, but Ryan Carter's backhand shot is one he'll want back and will stop the next 99 times he sees it. I wonder if he had some choice Swedish words for Carl Hagelin, who stopped skating on the play.
What To Take Away:
Losses happen. You would've liked for the Rangers to bury some more of their chances, but tonight just wasn't their night. The team has some defensive issues to correct, but overall NY battled hard and showed some resiliency.
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