New York Rangers Hockey: Happy Days on Broadway
Added by Gregg Snyder on February 27, 2011.
Despite missing several key players, Marc Staal and Marion Gaborik in particular, the seventh place New York Rangers annihilated the fifth place Washington Capitals. The 6-0 road win allowed the Rangers to keep their three point cushion over the eighth place Carolina Hurricanes and gain some ground on Montreal. The Canadiens are now just one point ahead of the Rangers, having lost to Toronto on Thursday.
Henrik Lundqvist was perfect, turning away all twenty-eight of the Capitals shots, including six from superstar Alex Ovechkin. The biggest stop of the game came in the first minutes of period one, when he stopped Ovie on an odd man rush. That stop seemed to ignite the Rangers, and was probably the turning point of the contest. The shutout was Lundqvist’s league-leading eighth of the season.
Eleven Rangers found their way onto the score sheet last night, with Erik Christensen’s four points leading the way. One Ranger not only didn’t appear on the score sheet, he barely appeared on the ice. Sean Avery only received a little over nine minutes of ice time, and his fourteen shifts were the fewest on the team. He has recently been demoted to the fourth line, as well. With all of the injuries the team has suffered recently, it doesn’t bode well when a players sees his role decrease instead of increase. Know this; an unhappy Sean Avery is a dangerously counterproductive Sean Avery. Hopefully he and coach Tortorella are working from the same script.
As suggested here previously, the Rangers traded for defenseman Bryan McCabe today in exchange for Tim Kennedy and a third round pick. This is a great deal for the Rangers. McCabe adds instant experience, leadership, and a big shot from the blueline. Michael Del Zotto was sent down to the Whale to make room for him on the roster. Del Zotto should benefit from the extra seasoning and experience he will gain in the AHL. He has undeniable talent, but he has not adapted to the NHL game very well this season. Tim Kennedy has played all season with Connecticut, registering an impressive 42 points (12g 30a) in 53 games.
Bryan McCabe will become an unrestricted free agent after this season. He comes to the Rangers as a rental for the playoffs, and they were able to get him without subtracting anybody from the roster. Next up, Brad Richards.
follow me on Twitter @dpv9