Originally posted on Bleeding All Blue  |  Last updated 12/30/11

The New York Rangers bounced back from Wednesday’s 4-1 loss against Washington with a 4-1 win over the Florida Panthers Friday night.  New York grabbed control of the game from the start and with the win retook first place in the Eastern Conference, one point of the idle Boston Bruins.  The Rangers will have the next two days off before hitting the ice Monday in Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic against the Flyers.
Carl Hagelin got the Rangers on the board just 35 seconds into the game when he deflected a Ryan Callahan pass behind Panthers’ goaltender Scott Clemmensen.  The goal was the fastest the Rangers have scored to open a game this season.
Brad Richards pushed the advantage to two when he beat Clemmensen with a snap shot 5:10 into the first.  The Rangers needed a little luck as Jeff Woywitka’s outlet pass seemed like it would be easily intercepted in the neutral zone, but it found Richards and he made the most of the opportunity.  The goal along with an assist later in the game snapped Richards five game point drought and hopefully will snap him out of a funk that has seen him score only four points in the prior 12 games.
The Rangers pushed the advantage to three when Michael Del Zotto fired from the left point and had his shot deflect off a Florida Panther and in late in the first period.  The goal was Del Zotto’s fifth of the season and sixth point in the last five games.  Following the goal the Panthers pulled Clemmensen and replaced him with Jose Theodore.
Brandon Dubinsky continued his recent hot play towards the middle of the second period when he used strong work along the boards to work out in front and beat Theodore with a backhander.  The goal was Dubinsky’s third along with two assists in the last five games. 
The Panthers got on the board just 1:47 later when Dubinsky failed to clear the zone along the boards and the puck ended up on Matt Bradley’s stick in the slot.                                                                                            There was no scoring in the third period, but there was some action with 7.6 seconds left after Michael Del Zotto cross-checked Tomas Kopecky setting off a fight.  Kopecky responded to the cross-check by punching Del Zotto in the face, which led to Mike Rupp beating on Kopecky.  It will be interesting to see if any of that carries over into the final meeting between the two teams next Thursday.


MORE FROM YARDBARKER

Winners and losers from NFL Saturday in Week 15

Lions break out Rockettes celebration after touchdown

Steve Kerr: Draymond Green shoulder issues ‘a little bit concerning’

Dodgers reacquire Matt Kemp from Braves for Adrian Gonzalez

Lakers’ Caldwell-Pope to miss games due to legal agreement

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

WATCH: Boise State gets too cute on Statue of Liberty play

Bill Cowher has no interest in coaching New York Giants

Report: Yankees re-sign CC Sabathia to $10 million contract

Baker Mayfield has high praise for Georgia defense

Is Vince McMahon looking to bring back the XFL?

Conor McGregor wants 'a real fight', says MMA is next up for him

Sports & Politics Intersect: Mr. Jones goes to Washington

The 'It's the most wonderful bowl of the year' quiz

NHL Weekender: Bolts keep striking, Preds on the hunt

Chargers are the AFC team no one wants to play in January

Donald Trump's quotes vs. the sports world in 2017

Five MLB teams that should trade for Manny Machado

The 'It's always chilly in Indiana' quiz

NFL puts safety entirely on players, again

Eight NFL teams who simply need to start over

Most important player on every team in each bowl matchup

NFL Week 15 Predictions

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Boogie, Z-Bo reach out and punch someone

NHL 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!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Yardbarker Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.

Sports & Politics Intersect: Mr. Jones goes to Washington

NHL Weekender: Bolts keep striking, Preds on the hunt

The 'It's the most wonderful bowl of the year' quiz

Donald Trump's quotes vs. the sports world in 2017

Chargers are the AFC team no one wants to play in January

The 'It's always chilly in Indiana' quiz

NFL puts safety entirely on players, again

Most important player on every team in each bowl matchup

NFL Week 15 Predictions

NBA Referee Hotline Bling: Boogie, Z-Bo reach out and punch someone

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker