Originally posted on The Rangers Tribune  |  Last updated 10/20/11

One win is nothing to get excited about, especially when it took four games to get, but finally earning a tally in the "W" column was certainly a major relief for the New York Rangers on Tuesday. And not only was it a win, but it was a 4-0 shutout of the defending Western Conference Champion Vancouver Canucks. The Rangers, in any way possible, needed some sort of encouragement during this western Canada swing, and I think Tuesday's explosive third period performance should have been the gamebreaker they were seeking. 

Despite the win, however, the Rangers did not play a full-60 minute game, which they've yet to do this season. Penalties again became a quick problem that prevented the Blueshirts from generating any momentum early in the game. Actually, New York got off to its best start of the year in the first few minutes, but a dismal powerplay followed by penalties of their own put a rapid end to that. Without the penalties, it's likely that the Ranges could have blown that one open even before the third period. 

Fifteen total penalties over the past two games is unacceptable and needs to change before the team learns that they will not be so lucky every night. John Tortorella is doing everything he can to send that message, which required him to bench Brandon Prust for an extended period of time last game after a foolish grabbing-the-stick penalty. If that's what it takes then so be it, because this team has no choice but to be more disciplined. 

But enough of the negatives, let's focus on the positives. What stood out to me the most in Tuesday's win was the Rangers' forecheck. All of the offensive lines were having some sort of input in the third period, and a lot of that had to do with their aggressive forechecking. The Rangers finally played their game and looked like the team we came to love in 2010-11. Will they continue that tonight? Calgary is a team they should very well be able to do so against if they managed to do it versus Vancouver, so my hopes are high. 

The main story in the win against Vancouver had to be goaltender Henrik Lundqvist. Not only did he make 40 saves, but he kept his club in the game through the first 40 minutes with some out-of-this world saves. It was a Vezina-worthy performance for sure and because of that Tortorella has chosen to go right back to Hank between the pipes tonight. I wouldn't be surprised if he is wearing the "Broadway Hat" again when all is said and done in Calgary. 

For Brandon Prust, this game will mean a lot as he spent several years with the Flames before coming to New York and was accepted well by the fans in Calgary during his time there. You could say the same for Tim Erixon, who was drafted by the Flames but forced a trade this past summer after not re-signing there. 

Neither Wojtek Wolski (groin) or Michael Sauer (shoulder) will be in the lineup tonight, although they are getting closer to returning. 

New York Rangers Lineup

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