Following a lazy loss to the New York Islanders, the Rangers played a 12:30pm matinee against the Washington Capitals at Madison Square Garden.
To bounce back from their mistakes this past Thursday, the Rangers really needed to get back to the basics. No attempts at fancy dekes, and no Ice Capades performances. Just “simply” play strong defense, push your guy to the sides, and maintain puck possession. The offense needed to remember what they told the media in the preseason- the “shoot first” mentality. With the help of Mika Zibanejad and Derek Stepan in winning faceoffs, having possession against a strongly offensive opponent is a must.
Ryan Mcdonagh puts us on the board first at 12:11 in the 1st period. He carried the puck in the zone on the left side, with Rick Nash in center, and Jimmy Vesey on the right side. McDonagh then shot the puck at Capitals’ backup goaltender, Philipp Grubauer, who used his pads to kick the puck away… (Thanks to Nash, for creating traffic in front of the net) it went right back to Ryan Mcdonagh. Gathering the loose puck, McDonagh dekes around Nicklas Backstrom and wrists the puck past Grubauer.
On a Chris Kreider penalty, at 2:37 in the 2nd period, the Capitals beat the Rangers in their own zone. As per usual, no one is covering Alexander Ovechkin in his preferred left circle. Henrik Lundqvist, who up until then, and continuing after, slipped up and allowed a goal to pass him.
Finally, at 11:26 in the 3rd period, tied 1-1, Mika zibanejad wins the faceoff and gives it Chris Kreider. Kreider skates the puck past defenseman Nate Schmidt to the left side of the goal, passes it in front of defenseman Brooks Orpik to Mats Zuccarello. Zuccarello was sitting perfectly in front of the net, to finish a wrister, putting us up one against the Capitals. Lundqvist helped his team solidify this win by making strong saves throughout the last 10 minutes of the 3rd period.
|Washington Capitals||1||vs.||2||New York Rangers|
|Ovechkin: PP Goal (27)
Grubauer: 28 saves
|McDonagh: Goal (3)
Zuccarello: Goal (12)
Lundqvist: 31 saves
|Third Star: Mats Zuccarello
Second Star: Philipp Grubauer
First Star: Henrik Lundqvist
Author: @MeghanMalcolm via Twitter