Powered by J.T. Miller's first two NHL goals, the New York Rangers regained their focus by beating the New York Islanders at MSG, 4-1. For a full box score of the game, visit Yahoo! Sports.
…Talk about the best home debut you could ask for if you're J.T. Miller: Two goals and first-star honors. I said it after the game against NJ he looks like he belongs out there. Very impressive so far.
…I felt John Tortorella pressed the right buttons after the Rangers' suspect effort Tuesday night. Brian Boyle deserved to take a seat in the press box and most of the players responded with better efforts. Competition never hurts.
…One of the players Torts did single out prior to tonight's game was Henrik Lundqvist in saying he needed to play better. 27 saves for The King tonight and looked much sharper. The Rangers go NOWHERE if Hank isn't in top form.
…Ryan Callahan is fearless. Comes back early from his shoulder injury. Blocks shots with his chest. Absolute warrior. Felt the team got a much needed lift from their captain's return.
…Despite the score, New York still has some things to tighen up. There were long stretches tonight where the Islanders dominated play cause by sloppy play.
Keep reading for my thoughts on the Marc Staal, Rangers' special teams play and why I didn't like what I saw from Rick Nash.
…What's this: Anton Stralman had the most ice time for the Rangers at 26:41?!?
…Special teams has been the focal point early on in the season. The PK was 5-for-5 tonight and the PP got on the board as well. Do teams need to have special teams playing well? Absolutely. Is it a must, though? The power play struggles are highlighted because the Rangers aren't scoring enough overall. They have to be more balanced offensively: something Torts repeatedly preaches. Maybe that takes some pressure of the PP to score nearly every time it's out there, which no team does.
…After a solid start to the season, I haven't been impressed with Nash's last two efforts (1 SOG in 18:50 tonight). I'm not sure if he's pressing too much with only two goals on the season, but in the beginning at least the other areas of his game were good enough. Nothing to panic about yet, but he's trending in the wrong direction.
…How selfish of McDonagh to score his own empty netter with Miller trailing behind him looking for the hat trick.
…Safe to say Marc Staal is completely recovered. In Dan Girardi's absence, Staal has stepped his game up. Ironic: it was Girardi last season who elevated his game to anchor the Rangers' D in his former partner's absence.
…Two days off before the Lightning come into town.
…The Rangers are 2-0 when I write the recap. #justsaying
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