1 Down, 3 To Go! Rangers Win, 4-3

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The playoffs have begun and the New York Rangers walked into the nations capital and defeated the Washington Capitals by a score of 4-3. In a game that was heavily tilted in the Caps favor, the Rangers held strong, weathered the storm and persevered in the end.

The Caps came out flying in the 1st period and outshot the Rangers by a 14-4 margin. Fortunately for the Rangers, the period ended at 0-0. One bullet dodged. In the 2nd period the Caps struck first on a PP when Tomas Fleischman deflected a quick shot from Alexander Ovechkin. But, the Rangers responded quickly when Scott Gomez answered with a 5-hole shot past Jose "Three or More"... er, Theodore (sorry, it sounded funny). In the last 5 minutes of the 2nd period, the Rangers struck twice on the PP... that's right, the PP actually worked! Nik Antropov made a nice fake and then fired a beauty from his offside past Theodore that was in and out of the net faster than a bullet.  A little later, while again on the PP, Scott Gomez made a nice drop pass to Markus Naslund who snapped the puck past a stunned Jose Theodore - giving the Rangers the 3-1 lead late in the period.

You would think that the Rangers were in a great position with so little time left in the period up by 2. But when do the Rangers ever make anything easy? Someone fell asleep late in the period and it was Marc Staal. Staal allowed big Victor Kozlov to crash the net and one time a perfect pass from Nicklas Backstrom, cutting the lead to one. Sorry, just a bad goal to give up that late in the period... it definitely gave the Caps some life heading into the 3rd period. When the 3rd period started, I just had that uneasy feeling that Washington was going to tie the game up and it was just a matter of how and when. Alexander Semin banked in a rebound on the PP with Dan Girardi serving a tripping penalty - the game was now on.

The play was tight for both teams until after a PP attempt by Washington failed, Nik Antropov fed Markus Naslund with a nice pass who in turn fed a flying Brandon Dubinsky. Dubinsky, who made a nice outside-inside move on Jeff Schultz then fired a shot that beat Jose Theodore to the short-side to get the Rangers the 4-3 lead. Big goal by Dubinsky. The Caps then had one more crack at the Rangers on the PP, but to no avail. Huge win by the Blueshirts.

It's huge in a 7 game series to win the first game. Even more so on the road and the Rangers accomplished that tonight. Big time players play big when it counts - Gomez, Antropov, and Lundqvist would fit in that category tonight. Sean Avery was his usual self and kept the Caps off balance. Ryan Callahan may not have shown up on the scoresheet, but he was outstanding with his hitting, hustling, and he even hit 2 goal posts. The big thing is that the Rangers have Lundqvist and the Caps have Theodore - the biggest plus for the Rangers in this series. One more thing... nice call on Girardi 18 seconds into the game, gotta love the NHL and its officiating. It's a comedy act!

Game 2 on Saturday. Enough time to rest up and do it again and we will see if Chris Drury returns from his mysterious injury or not. The only problem for the Rangers is the national TV coverage hasn't been good to them this season. Although under Tortorella things have been decent, let's keep that trend going. Over and out!


Wrath of Sanity said...

Great win last night! The objective was to take 1 of 2, they took the first and can look to take both with a win on Saturday.

I was shocked that Drury didn't play. He better have a bad injury to miss a god damn playoff game.

We were a little sloppy tonight at times, but we still got the W in the end and that's all that matters.

The Rangers have to keep throwing pucks at Theodore... he's never really played that great against us all season, I don't see any reason for him to turn it around if we keep up the pressure.

The King just has to be on his game from here on out and we'll have a shot. Let's go Rangers!

Kotsy's Korner said...

Wrath, Huge win for the Blueshirts. Getting one of two is the usual objective while on the road. Now why not take two?

Drury's injury seems to be cloaked in a lot of mystery. Whats wrong who knows? Somethings a little fishy here.

The Rangers did not have their "A" game for most of the night. What they had was Lundqvist and their "A" game in parts.

"Three or more" (Jose Theodore) did look a little shaky. Totally agree get as many shots on goal as you can.

Jeff said...

Jose "three or more" lol, nice one Chris.

What an effort yesterday especially in the third. When Kozlov scored, I told myself, "not good, third period collapse coming." And... Nope, no collapse yesterday, no collapse on Sunday, two games in a row where the team do not lose an important game in the third, but most of all, two games in a row where the team finds a way to win in the third. And without his captain! lol, hey wait a second. Are the Rangers allowed to do that?

The first period was a one way period, Red everywhere, Caps everywhere, Ovechkin everywhere. This penalty 18 seconds in was a joke. NHL should flip a coin before the game as to determine the winner, that would be the same. Nice way to give the momentum to the local team, and to almost ruin the game.

Second and third periods were far from being dominated by the caps. Theo is guilty on the first Rangers goal but to be honest, the 3 others goal are three nice goal constructed by the Rangers, and two on power play. Antropov's fake and release were nice, and the way Dubinsky undressed Schultz was not bad neither. But the first goal was just brutal, that was not really a good shot by Gomez. Like I said, I discovered a new kind of Swiss cheese, the Theodore, with holes everywhere. Very tasty. ^^

Can't wait for game 2, and why not come back to the garden with 2 wins? Our captain will be back by then, let's play with heart and **** the odds and all these analysts who give the series to the caps.


And to finish on a funny note:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Hem4Cthi1nENice move by Dubi, 3 goals in the last 2. Interesting...

Kotsy's Korner said...

Jeff, The Rangers got what they needed great goaltending, enough scoring, and in the end they withstood the early onslaught by the Caps.

The "Theodore" LOL, I think I'll have some of that on my ham sandwich today.

Not only was that a brutal call on Girardi, How about Mike Green's hit on Sjostrom? Are you kidding.

You're absolutely right why not take two in Washington?

Also I took the Rangers in 7 over the Caps over at the Fourth Period Expert's section.

Nice video, Rangers on a roll.

GENO said...

Hi Chris, at least they won a game that they tried to give away with some help. I guess the boys beat the 2 teams they played against last night, the one's in red, and the one's in stripes!! Imagine if that was a Ranger (especially Avery) who through that flying elbow ! The WWE would be proud. I knew the PK would be working overtime. As a long time hockey fan, I think the officiating is got to be considered a "JOKE" when there are some teams that get away with murder, while other teams are looked at for infractions with an ATOMIC MICROSCOPE. I wonder if that was Crosby - Ovechkin or any of the other cry babies -- opps I mean stars, if anything would have been called on that flying elbow. I WONDER !! Well enough crying on my end, I just wish the officials will just let the boys play. Sorry Chris for my griping (18secs in the game) come on ! What do you think ? Geno

Mr. Hockey said...

Kots---I'm out here in the Valley of the Sun---Feels more like Regina!!!--It's been cold and windy---No NHL network or VS--Iwonder why the Yotes are in the red???--It felt like 1960 listening to the game on the ole Philco(by 63 I hade a 3 transister portable radio and was able to walk around and listen)---I forgot how easy it was to have your guts ripped out by listening and not being able to see the action---I always judge what I say based on what I see---No can do, but from what I heard, I'd have to say---13 shots by number 8...the King was King for the day----Didn't sound like we won many draws----Sounded like the vets on D were pretty stout and got a bunch of ice---I don't know if he looked weak'but from the way the Caps seemed to have their way skating I'd have to guess that Jose should have given The staff a better showing in nets---Makes me wonder if they'll stick with him???---We're head and shoulders above them in nets anyway!!--Just wondering--It's their problem anyway---This West Coast time sucks---6:30 and the game was already over!!!---Anyway it was a nice win--A big road win---It's nice to get into their heads right of the get go--Adios Amigo---I'll be back East on Tuesday---Did I read the schedule right, and see a game on Wednesday??????

Kotsy's Korner said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kotsy's Korner said...

Geno, I can't agree with you more. The NHL has manipulated what was once a great game of skill, toughness, and pure grit into over officiated crap.

It's apparent Bettman and his rule changes over the years have not produced the wide open Hockey and more specifically the scoring he dreamed about.

What it is doing is turning Pros into actors looking to the referees like wide receivers in the NFL.

I really hate it, but it is what it is.

Kotsy's Korner said...

Ah, Mr.Hockey "Back to the Future" with listening to the game on the radio. Well at least you could use your imagination LOL.

The Rangers persevered, rode out the storm and got the job done.

At least you will get to see the game on Saturday and seeing is believing. The Rangers will have be better in game 2 simple as that.

kittylarue said...

Well, we're back, the game was exciting!!

The game itself was exciting, we won, and wow, we just as easily could have lost, the passes at times made you wonder.....The first period,they were out muscled? I knew that it could be done w/out Dru. was not shocked he didn't play and won't be shocked if he's not tonight.

There were only a dribble of Rangers fans in the arena, and a lot of the Caps fans could be mistaken for Montreal fans or Philly fans, let's just say for 2, 17 year old, Ranger fans, it was scarey, beer dumped on them, faux abused w/a rock the red towel and then at the end of the game, pushed down stairs.A Caps fan that sat right next to the boys, came up to them and apologized and said how embarassed he was. Nice,eh?

Kotsy's Korner said...

kittylarue, Lets hope the Rangers get off to a better start today, because Washington is going to be desperate.

I totally agree that the Rangers were handled Physically. The Caps are one of the biggest teams in the league.

This Drury injury has me scratching my head. Is it serious? I guess only the Shadow knows.

Too bad for the two 17 year old Ranger fans. It always makes me wonder what kind of IQ level certain fans have.

It would great to go back home up 2.

kittylarue said...

Up 2 would be awesome and I believe can be done! Drury, that is a big ?...... I agree, "who knows? Only the Shadow knows".... Play big today, win big today, keep the momentum going.... I guess we should never be shocked by some of what we see, I can say, the sparks of good make one very excited for the rest of the playoffs and the potential of what's to come!

I would say fan IQ is at times, questionable...instant a-hole, just add beer........
The bright spot was they weren't seriously injured and the RANGERS WON!!!!!!!!!

Let's Go Rangers!!

Jeff said...

What worry me the most is that Drury didn't take any face-offs yesterday during practice. Will probably be a game time decision like Wednesday. Am wondering if that's wouldn't be better to give him the week-end to rest, the two next games are more important than tonight's one.

And I hope Lundqvist slept well with his sore neck, as many I stopped breathing when I heard the news yesterday. Got a sore neck some years ago after a motorbike accident, good luck to sleep.

Good news we signed Matt Gilroy, that could be a really good deal for us. Sather played smart again on that one.

Can't wait for the game, let's steal that one, LGR!

Kotsy's Korner said...

kittylarue, The Rangers basically need to be patient today. Not get caught up in a back and fourth shootout.

It will be interesting to see how the Rangers react to the early pressure Washington will bring.

Love the instant a-hole line. It fits perfect.

Kotsy's Korner said...

Jeff, There's something very fishy going on with Drury's injury. How bad is he hurt is the big question?

Lundqvist should be good to go, but I understand the panic.

Gilroy was being sought by many teams. Sather did the job.

It would be excellent to steal another game heading home.

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