Found April 08, 2013 on Blue Seat Blogs:
New_york_rangers_bd99
Boy were the Rangers sloppy in this one. Michael Del Zotto had a very rough game, and had three separate miscues that led directly to Leafs goals. The Leafs aren’t elite, but they are good enough that if you make miscues like that they will capitalize. Rick Nash and Derek Stepan were able to keep this game interesting with timely goals, but they represented 50% of the players that weren’t sloppy (Mats Zuccarello, Anton Stralman). This was ugly to watch all around, and the Rangers came out on the losing end because of their sloppiness. On to the goals: Leafs 1, Rangers 0 Stay with your man MDZ. With the Rangers making a bad change (as Joe pointed out), the Leafs rushed in on a semi-3-on-2 with Phil Kessel, James van Riemsdyk, and John Michael-Liles, with Michael Del Zotto and Anton Stralman back. Kessel’s shot gets deflected wide, and Liles goes behind the net for the puck. Stralman is with him, but Del Zotto leaves van Riemsdyk alone in front to go to Liles as well. Henrik Lundqvist made the first save –I don’t know how he made that save– when Liles got the puck to JVR, but he had all the time in the world to get the rebound. Leafs 2, Rangers 0 Gotta maintain possession. This began as a potential 3-on-2, but Clarke MacArthur mishandled the puck a bit and allowed Del Zotto to attempt to break it up. The problem was that MDZ mishandled the puck and MacArthur chipped it past him to begin a 3-on-1. MacArthur eventually got the puck to Nazem Kadri, who got it past a sliding Girardi –who was so far out of position on that slide it made me laugh– to Ryan O’Byrne. Hank had no shot. Rangers 1, Leafs 2 Nash doing Nash things. Derek Stepan led a 2-on-2 rush with Rick Nash, and fed him the puck at the blue line. Nash went wide around the pair of Cody Franson and John Michael-Liles, and did his patented Nash-wide-around-the-defense-and-power-to-the-front-and-stuff-it-in move. James Reimer made the first save, but the puck ricocheted off a few legs, then through Reimer’s, for the goal. Leafs 3, Rangers 1 Tough spot for McDonagh. With the Leafs on the powerplay, they cycled the puck well and eventually worked the puck to Cody Franson at the point. Franson worked the puck to Dion Phaneuf who got the puck to Phil Kessel at the far side. At this point (pictured above) you can see James van Riemsdyk in front of the net screening Lundqvist, and Ryan McDonagh apparently not moving him away. The reason why he can’t is because Franson is cutting to the net at the back door, and McDonagh is left to cover them both.  Dan Girardi winds up going a little too far up for the Kessel shot as well, but that doesn’t affect the fact that Franson made a smart play in cutting to the net. He divided McDonagh’s attention, which prevented him from moving the screen in front by JVR. Rangers 2, Leafs 3 Nash doing more Nash things. Nash did it again. The Leafs didn’t have their top pair on defense, and after Nash collected the pass from John Moore, he was off to the races, completely blowing past Mark Frasor at the circle, and the pulling his usual Nash-wide-around-the-defense-and-power-to-the-front-and-stuff-it-in move. He was a higher up, so all he needed to do was wait out Reimer. It helps that Carl Hagelin drew a penalty in front on Cody Franson, that may have distracted Reimer. Rangers 3, Leafs 3 Great play by Stepan This one was easy. Nikolai Kulemin tried to pinch in and keep the puck deep while on the powerplay, but Stepan was able to chip it past him and start a 2-on-1 with Darroll Powe. Stepan was looking shot all the way, and converted. Lefas 4, Rangers 3 Rough night for MDZ. The Leafs caught the Rangers running around in their own zone, but it wasn’t until the puck wound up at the far side face off dot that the breakdowns began. The main breakdown was MDZ being too high at the top of the circle. Once the Leafs broke through, MDZ was even higher, leaving van Riemsdyk enough time to get the puck to Tyler Bozak, who got the puck to Kessel behind both Girardi and Nash, who was covering for MDZ. Kessel was a bit fortunate here, as he whiffed on the original shot, but a fortuitous rebound went right to his stick for the rebound goal. As we discussed earlier today, the Rangers need a 6-3-1 record in their final 10 games to guarantee themselves a playoff berth. I figured they would split the home-and-home with Toronto, so this loss isn’t much of a surprise at this point. What was a surprise was the sloppy play. The Rangers really need to salvage the split on Wednesday if they are to have any chance of avoiding a date with the Pens or the Habs in the first round. Best to have a short memory, and get back at it then. Tweet
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Clowe Dropped Eight Year Extension Demand to Sign with Rangers

Last week I posted that Ryane Clowe could be looking for an eight-year extension this summer with the Rangers, however, Bruce Garrioch at the Ottawa Sun reports that the newest Ranger gave up on his sign-and-trade demand when he couldn't find anybody willing to give him that deal at the trade deadline. Clowe, who Garrioch believes will re-sign with the Rangers this offseason...

Around the Farm: Whale win 3-2 over Bridgeport

The Connecticut Whale inched closer to a playoff berth in the AHL, beating Bridgeport 3-2 and improving their record to 35-27-5-3, good for 78 points, second in the Northeast Division, and seventh in the Eastern Conference. With six games remaining in CT’s season, they need to hold off one of Norfolk and Hershey (both with 75 points) to qualify for the playoffs. Ryan Bourque, Benn...

Staal Skates; Miller to Whale

So, apparently while I was renovating my bathroom there was some Rangers news. None bigger than Marc Staal reporting that he has begun skating for the first time since being sidelined by a puck to the eye on March 5th. Staal, who took the ice for the first time yesterday and again today, said this about the injury (via Blueshirts United)... "The first night the eye looked...

Around the Farm: St. Croix with an assist, Edmonton takes 2-0 series lead

Michael St. Croix and the Edmonton Oil Kings continued their WHL dominance, blanking Medicine Hat 2-0 and taking a 2-0 series lead. St. Croix had a powerplay assist on the second goal, which sealed the deal for the Oil Kings. The only other prospects in action last night were those with the CT Whale, who lost 1-0 to Providence. AHL (L 1-0) Dylan McIlrath: 0 G, 0 A, 5 PIM, ...

With March streak, Rangers playoffs chances up to 86.9%

Photo Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS These new Rangers are starting to look like the Rangers of old, and it is beginning to show in the standings. Currently, the Rangers have a record of 19-15-4, good for second place in the Atlantic Division and seventh place in the Eastern Conference. The Islanders (19-16-4) are tied with the Rangers in points, but the Rangers have a game in hand and...

Fast Has Lower Body Injury; McIlrath Fights

Jesper Fast missed his second straight game due to a lower body injury Sunday night, as the CT Whale lost to the Providence Bruins 1-0. ...sort of an inauspicious start to Fast's pro career. Let's hope this doesn't become a trend as sadly Fast has had issues staying healthy in the past, including a gruesome foot injury last season and a shoulder issue earlier this...

Lundqvist Puts On Vezina Winning Performance As Rangers Top Hurricanes

With the NHL season in its final stretch, the New York Rangers were in dire need of two points, facing a Carolina Hurricanes team that had just one win in its previous eleven games.  The Rangers were looking for their third win in four games, coming off Friday night’s shootout loss in Pittsburgh.  The story of this [...]

Game 39 Open Thread: Rangers at Maple Leafs

Frank Franklin II/Associated Press The Rangers are in Toronto tonight to begin a home-and-home with the Maple Leafs at a very critical point of the season. These are the last two contests between the clubs (the Rangers won the first meeting), and the Rangers sit four points back of the Leafs for fifth in the conference. If the Rangers win both contests, they will leapfrog the Leafs...

Mats Zuccarello has proven he belongs in the NHL, but does his future lie in New York?

AP Photo/Mary Altaffer Mats Zuccarello has yet to net his first goal of the season, but the diminutive Norwegian has already left his mark in six games since returning to the Blueshirts. Zuccarello has averaged a healthy 16:49 and has earned high praise from coach John Tortorella for his conditioning, quickness and creativity.  Zuccarello has had an immediate impact on the power...

Game Preview: New York Rangers vs Toronto Maple Leafs

TONIGHT’S GAME The Rangers will begin a home-and-home set when they face-off against Original Six opponent, the Toronto Maple Leafs, tonight at Air Canada Centre (7:00 p.m. — TV: MSG Network; Radio: ESPN 98.7), in their third game in four days. The Blueshirts currently rank second in the Atlantic Division standings, and rank seventh in [...]

Marc Staal Talks Visors

from David Shoalts of the Globe and Mail, If he had to do it all over again, Marc Staal would have been wearing a visor when a shot by Philadelphia Flyers defenceman Kimmo Timonen crashed into his right eye on Mar. 5. While he was fortunate to escape a career-threatening eye injury, the New York Rangers defenceman suffered facial fractures and still does not know when he can...

Messier receives Order of Hockey in Canada

Mark Messier was one of three recipients of the Order of Hockey in Canada for his contributions to the game. Messier, who won six Stanley Cups during a Hall of Fame career with Edmonton, the New York Rangers and Vancouver, was honored along with Paul Henderson and coach Dave King. During a two-hour ceremony held on Parliament Hill, Messier broke down as he spoke of the national...

Game 37 By the Numbers: Rangers at Hurricanes

Last night's game was a good chance for the Hurricanes to get a win. They were going up against a Rangers team who just played an overtime game the previous night, had to travel and were starting the same goalie in a back-to-back situation on top of that. This seemed like a good chance for the Canes to right the sinking ship that is their season, but as you probably know, nothing...

Game 40 Open Thread: Leafs at Rangers

Nathan Denette/AP After Monday night’s sloppy loss in Toronto, the Rangers are looking to exact revenge on the Leafs tonight in the series finale at The Garden. There is a lot at stake tonight for the Rangers, who are sitting in the 8th spot in the East. They trail the Islanders by two points (with a game in hand), and are tied with Winnipeg (with two games in hand). A win tonight...
All Sports News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.