“Rangervations”: No “Lack” of offense in Carolina for the Rangers
The Rangers have finally won back to back games for the first time since Nov. 21st and 23rd. It must be snowing outside. Oh Wait! It is! As a blizzard pounds NY and much of the Northeast seaboard, today’s a good day to write about Rangers hockey.
First thing off the bat, please stay safe and warm in your homes. If you can avoid going outside, please do. This storm is also impacting the Rangers and may possibly threaten to postpone Sunday’s game in Ottawa if the Blueshirts can’t get out of Raleigh. They are currently staying there to ride out the storm.
Now let’s breakdown the game by making some Rangervations (Rangers + Observations). And yes, being snow bound makes me come up with silly terms.
Henrik Lundqvist is heating up. Matter of fact, they should just send him outside and watch the snow melt in his path. Seth Rothman of Inside Hockey posted these recent numbers that indicate The King is back.
The rest of the NHL should take note. Henrik Lundqvist has found his game: Last 7: 5-1-1, 1.96 GAA, .932 sv%. Last 5: 4-1-0, 1.56, .947.
— Seth Rothman (@RothmanHockey) January 23, 2016
J.T. Miller is starting to truly realize his potential. I do not hide the fact that I’ve been in love with this kid since I watched him win gold at the World Juniors. He isn’t the fastest, biggest or smartest player on the ice. His shot is good and his passing solid, but it’s his drive to win that stands out. You saw it on his second goal when he stole the puck and beat Eddie Lack like a rented mule. The kid is a winner and it’s one of those intangibles that stats can’t measure.
Another look at Miller’s second of the night! #NYR pic.twitter.com/xOCZxrkHqT
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) January 23, 2016
The Rangers overall play was outstanding. They outshot and out-chanced their opponent by a wide margin through two periods. In the third, they sat back and kept the Canes to the outside to preserve the win.
It’s something I noted yesterday when I stated the Rangers could easily win all 3 remaining games heading into the All Star Break. Check this out from one of our very own writers.
NY Rangers are the most-improved 5v5 CF% team in the #NHL when comparing [10/1 to 11/31] data vs [12/1 to present]. pic.twitter.com/55aObbQsBo
— HockeyStatMiner (@HockeyStatMiner) January 23, 2016
Daniel Paille played his first game as a Ranger and was very effective. He actually played a small role in Ryan McDonagh‘s beauty of a score. In the video below, you will see him take away the simple passing lane that forces the Canes defenseman to try a low percentage pass up the middle that McDonagh intercepts and converts. Not a bad 1st impression! In 15 minutes of ice, he was a +1 with 3 hits and a takeaway. Not bad for his first NHL game of the year.
The Rangers PK killed off the 1 Carolina opportunity so it’s hard to really judge improvement. But not being scored on is a start. I like that with the addition of Paille, AV used 3 forward units to kill the penalty, allowing them stay fresh. Fast/Moore, Nash/Stepan, Stalberg/Paille did a good job but let’s keep a close eye on this going forward.
In a game that the Rangers really controlled, it’s hard to find one. However, Dan Boyle stood out like a sore thumb. Lundqvist should have had a shutout but Boyle was sticked in the face and opted to go FULL EURO SOCCER CHUMP on him. See video below.
Not only is he looking around and holding his face, he screened Lundqvist! Sorry, but you’re a veteran and you should know better. Listen, I understand that AV likes him on the PP, but he’s become an orange traffic cone out there defensively. He contributes almost nothing 5v5 and really hasn’t done much on the PP either. So why is Dylan McIlrath still sitting for him. This needs to change going forward.
Let us know your thoughts in the comments section. Let’s Go Rangers.