Ryan Callahan celebrates scoring the eventual game winner with his Rangers teammates in Thursday night’s 2-0 victory over the Washington Capitals (photo by Greg Fiume/NHL.com)
It was a pretty brutal West Coast road trip for the New York Rangers, losing four of their first five games but it seemed like a return to the Eastern Time zone was just what the team needed. As for the Capitals, it was a game of revenge, but revenge would not be served here as the Rangers stymied the Capitals offense, winning an Atlantic Division-type game 2-0.
After a scoreless first period, defenseman John Moore, the former Columbus first round pick scored his first of the season, clanging a point shot off the cross bar over Braden Holtby’s shoulder on a 4-on-4 situation. Then not even two minutes later Ryan Callahan snapped a shot past Holtby for his third of the season after the Rangers were able to cycle the puck around the net, allowing Callahan to find a hole in front of the net. Center Brad Richards was the primary assister on both goals. Henrik Lundqvist shut the door on any and all Capitals chances for his first shutout of the season.
The Caps were brutally outshot in the second period 21-6 and were down in shots 32-14 after two periods. Not exactly the formula to win a game in any level of hockey.
The Capitals’ powerplay, who were white hot coming into the game, were shut out on four tries, but the penalty kill also shut out the Rangers’ powerplay on three occasions.
For the Capitals, they fall to 2-5, and have lost three of their last four home games and are 1-3 on this current 5 game homestand. The Capitals play the Columbus Blue Jackets tonight, who are on a three game losing streak, losing their last game in Montreal 5-2. The Rangers raise their record to 2-4, and will continue on with road games in New Jersey, Philadelphia, and Detroit before returning back to Madison Square Garden to take on the Canadiens.
OTHER GAME NOTES:
.Rookie Tom Wilson will not be returned to the Plymoth Whalers of the OHL and will remain with the team throughout the season. The 20 year old 16th overall pick in 2012 has yet to register a point this season and has a +/- rating of -2.
. John Erskine and Aaron Volpatti were both scratches for the Capitals with Volpatti being a healthy scratch for the 7th straight game. Erskine still seems to be nursing an upper body injury that has cost him two games. Michael Del Zotto sat out for the Rangers.
. Columbus comes to town losers of three straight and is the final game of the home stand. Five players are tied for the team lead in goals, while veteran Marion Gaborik paces the team with 6 points in five games. Defenseman David Savard leads the team in +/- with +3.