Quick Hits – Rangers vs Islanders 3/22/17

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Here is my recap of the Rangers 3-2 loss to the Islanders

  • Rick Nash – Nash has been playing like his old self this season. But while he doesn’t have the goal totals everyone would like, he is playing aggressive and taking no prisoners. And he used that attitude to give the Rangers a 2-1 lead early in the second. Oscar Lindberg through a long pass up the boards to a streaking Nash. Nash then muscled his way past Thomas Hickey, and shot one off the glove of Thomas Greiss that trickled into the net. It was his 20th goal of the season, and hopefully he can continue scoring as the regular season winds down.
  • Special Teams – As I have said time and time again lately, if the Rangers can get their PK and PP working at the same time, they become that much more dangerous when the playoffs start. The good news is that the PP has picked up it’s play the last few weeks. The unit has scored seven times in the last eleven games, including the first goal of this one. After Mika Zibanejad took a pass from the corner, he cut to the net; and while falling down, slid the puck over to Mats Zuccarello who put it into the open net.

    And now for the bad news. The Rangers PK has not been good in the last month, and especially in the last eight games. Since February 21st, the Rangers PK has clicked at a brutal 70.8% clip, and has given up a goal in each of the team’s last eight contests. The team needs to figure this out, and do it fast.

  • “It’s something that we obviously need to get better. We’ve got the personnel to get the job done and we will.” – Alain Vigneault

  • Antti Raanta – The Finnish netminder made 25 stops on 28 Islanders shots, but it wasn’t enough to get his team the win. An argument can be made that he had no chance on any of the three goals. But that isn’t so important anymore. Now that team number one Henrik Lundqvist is expected to be back between the pipes over the weekend, Raanta will get some well deserved rest, while King Henrik reassumes his spot at the top of the depth chart.
  • Garden of “Dreams” – The Rangers have not played well at MSG this season, with just 19 of their 45 team wins coming at the “World’s Most Famous”; and they have lost seven straight on home ice. The Rangers have three home games left to get it sorted out, because come playoff time, they will need to win on home ice if they have any shot of making a playoff run.
  • “We try to play every game the same. We happen to be winning all the road games and losing most of the home ones right now.” – JT Miller

    NEXT GAME: The Blueshirts will look to get back on track as they head off to Hollywood to face the Kings. Puck drops at 10:30.