Gerard Gallant rains on Rangers parade, may change lines again

new york rangers gerard gallant
Nov 1, 2022; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers head coach Gerard Gallant watches the action in the first period against the Philadelphia Flyers at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Wendell Cruz-USA TODAY Sports

Head coach Gerard Gallant put a little damper on the New York Rangers proverbial parade after they rocked the Florida Panthers in a 6-2 win on home ice last night.

While the final score was lopsided, the Panthers did outshoot the Blueshirts 35 to 26 alarming the coach.

“Honestly, I wasn’t overly happy most of the night,” Gallant said. “We turned a lot of pucks over the first two periods and gave up a lot of chances. We were in control of the game but I just didn’t think we played well enough. We got some puck luck and some breaks but our game wasn’t real good. You win 6-2 and you’re questioning your lines again. We’ll see what happens [Tuesday at practice].”

Gerard Gallant changing the lines again?

New York Rangers
Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The Blueshirts put forth some new line combinations after struggling to score against the Boston Bruins in a 3-1 loss the prior contest. Here’s how these lines produced at even strength:

  • Panarin (2A) – Zibanejad (1G – 1A) – Kreider (0)
  • Lafreniere (1G – 1A) – Chytil (1G – 1A) – Kakko (2A)
  • Vesey (1G) – Trocheck (1A) – Goodrow (1A)
  • Kravtsov (0) – Leschyshyn (0) – Gauthier (0)

Mika Zibanejad did register a power play goal set up by Artemi Panarin, who wasn’t concerned with the shot disparity after the game.

“It’s always good with the puck going in on not many shots,” Panarin explained. “It’s better for our mood and excitement. It’s just like energy. It’s always nice when you shoot the puck and score a few.”

However, to defend Gallant’s take fresh after the game, the Rangers were heavily outshot and out-chanced in the second period. Although, without the luxury of reviewing game film prior to his presser, he may feel differently this morning.

MSG Analyst Stephen Valiquette posted his game breakdown and the Rangers underlying stats look solid. While the Panthers did have several more scoring chances, the Rangers had the edge in high-danger opportunities and cashed in on them.

Furthermore, I’m not sure what Gallant is calling puck luck. The goals scored by Vesey and Lafreniere were gritty goals that happen when you crash the net. It’s something that the head coach did highlight afterwards and stressed he wants to see them do more of it the future.

The Rangers will practice today at 12:00 pm et, let’s see if Gallant does make any tweaks.

After having a chance to sleep on it, I’m going to think he’ll give these lines another go in Toronto on Wednesday.

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Anthony Scultore is the founder of Forever Blueshirts and has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL... More about Anthony Scultore