Rangers Fall Once Again In The Sunshine State

There was no place to go but up after Thursday night’s debacle in Tampa Bay. Fortunately, the Rangers got right back to the ice with a contest against Florida’s other team, the Panthers. Unfortunately, the Panthers came out on top, sending the Rangers back to New York with a 4-3 loss, and an 0-2 trip through the Sunshine State.

Ryan Strome – Since assuming top-line duties after Mika Zibanejad went out with an injury, Ryan Strome has been one of the team’s best forwards. Entering the contest, Strome had registered eight points in the elevated role and recorded a goal and an assist in this one. Strome was the beneficiary of a gorgeous pass from Jesper Fast, who put it right on the tape of the streaking Strome for a deflection goal that tied the game at one.

It’s unclear when Zibanejad will return to the lineup, but you can’t deny the chemistry between the unit of Panarin-Strome-Fast. Perhaps DQ will keep the trio together when the injured Zibanjead eventually comes back into the lineup.

Artemiy Panarin – The Rangers landed the summer’s biggest free agent, and the guy hasn’t disappointed. Artemiy Panarin scored his ninth goal of the season, as well as adding his 14th helper in just 18 games. Panarin’s goal tied the game at two for the Blueshirts, as the Russian took a pass from Strome and beat his longtime friend Sergei Bobrovsky from the top of the circles.

It’s been about six weeks since the Rangers started their season and Artemiy Panarin has shown why he was worth the $81.5 million that Jeff Gorton paid him. Panarin will be the offensive cornerstone for the Rangers for a long, long time.

Tony DeAngelo – It’s been a great start to the season for the Sewell, NJ native, as the defenseman got his sixth goal of the young season. DeAngelo finished off a great passing play, receiving the cross-ice pass from the aforementioned Panarin to give the Rangers the lead.

DeAngelo has taken a big step this season, improving his defensive game in addition to showcasing his offensive skill. The 24-year-old is playing for his next contract this season, and with the way he’s been playing, he’s looking at a decent pay raise in the offseason.

Lias Andersson – This isn’t the first time that the young Swede has been mentioned in the recaps this season, but this time it’s for his lack of ice time. David Quinn said before the game that he wanted to see more from Andersson before giving him more ice time. On the face of it, that statement makes a lot of sense. But, when you consider that Andersson got just 3:55 of ice time in a 60-minute game, it’d be hard for anyone to make enough progress to warrant a promotion. It’s hard to understand why Andersson has been stuck playing very limited minutes all season, but something has got to give here. It wouldn’t shock me if Jeff Gorton is looking to trade Andersson for other assets.

Beating Yourself – Once again, it was the special teams that cost the Rangers in this one. The Blueshirts took two penalties in the first period, and the Panthers were able to capitalize on both of those opportunities. David Quinn did bench Pavel Buchnevich and Micheal Haley upon returning from the penalty box, but it put the Rangers behind the proverbial eight-ball very early. The Blueshirts did score two goals of their own in the opening period, but that’s two consecutive games where the Rangers have taken bad penalties early.

Henrik Lundqvist – It wasn’t a great game from King Henrik, who made his 868th NHL start. Lundqvist made 26 saves on 30 Florida shots, and will probably want the Brett Connolly goal back. That being said, Lundqvist kept his team in the game, giving the Rangers a chance to come back and tie it in the third.

Next Game: The Rangers return to MSG on Wednesday night for a matchup with the Washington Capitals. Puck drops at 8!


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