After a heartbreaking loss Saturday in which the Rangers blew a 4-1 lead with about 10 minutes remaining to the Ottawa Senators, the Blueshirts bounced back Monday night with a convincing 5-2 win against a very good San Jose Sharks squad that came in winners of five straight.
The Rangers opened the scoring in the first period on a goal by Ryan McDonagh from the top of the circle on a nice feed from Ryan Callahan. They followed it up 10 minutes later on a beautiful feed by Brandon Dubinsky to Derek Stepan on a 2-on-1 for the power play goal. It was Stepan’s first goal of the season. The Sharks struck late in the first on a goal by Joe Pavelski.
The Sharks knotted the game at 2 midway through the second period. After about a minute and a half of pressure, Logan Couture blasted home a one-timer off a pass from Douglas Murray. The Rangers answered back with another power play goal by Callahan, and added two more insurance goals by Artem Anisimov and Callahan again to take a 5-2 lead into the third period. They wouldn’t relinquish it, and finally got a win on home ice after two unsuccessful attempts. Martin Biron made 24 saves for his second win of the season.
Make the jump for reaction.
- This was by far the Rangers’ best game of the season, as they put together a 60-minute effort and were the better team at all facets of the game against a very talented Sharks team.
- Callahan has three goals in four games, and looks to be playing like the player he was last year. He’s throwing the body, killing penalties and scoring dirty goals. His second goal happened by not giving up on the play.
- Although he isn’t scoring goals, Dubinsky is playing very solid. He added two more assists tonight and is improving his game while limiting his penalties.
- Marian Gaborik continues to play great hockey. He just has a determination and drive that was missing last season, possibly due to injury. He’s a threat each and every shift, and made a great defensive play early in the game that we’re not used to seeing.
- Wojtek Wolski is quietly playing very good hockey as well, finishing with a game-high seven shots tonight. If the team can get him going, he can be a threat on the second and third line.
- Nice to see both Stepan and Anisimov finally get on the scoresheet with some goals.
- Michael Del Zotto‘s game is improving greatly, and shows that time in the minors can do wonders for a young player. His stick-handling driving to the net tonight was a thing-a-beauty.
- Biron is showing that he’s still a very solid backup like he was last season before breaking his collar bone. He’s had two starts and has two W’s. Can’t ask for much more than that out of your backup.
- McDonagh is just evolving into a monster. Like Sam Rosen said tonight, he’s a player that is actually benefitting from Marc Staal‘s injury. Obviously you’d rather have Staal in the lineup, but McDonagh is easing the burden. Three goals this season after scoring just one last year.
- Pains me to say it, but Erik Christensen had a very strong game tonight with two assists.
- Finally, the team has gotten their penalties under control. They took a few late in the game, but their penalty kill has been tremendous.