Posted April 20, 2012 on
AP on Fox
New York Rangers
Coach John Tortorella tweaked the New York Rangers' top two lines during practice on Friday ahead of Game 5 of the Eastern Conference playoff series against the Ottawa Senators.
The series is tied 2-2 after New York's 3-2 overtime loss on Wednesday in Ottawa. After a day off, the Rangers returned to practice on Friday at Madison Square Garden.
The Rangers have scored nine goals in four games. So Tortorella had Marian Gaborik skate with Derek Stepan and Artem Anisimov, while Brad Richards centered Ryan Callahan and Brandon Dubinsky during practice.
''Our top guys, just like everybody, wants to be our top guys,'' Tortorella said when asked about the changes.
The Senators announced on Twitter that captain Daniel Alfredsson, who was elbowed in the head by Carl Hagelin in Game 2, will remain home. Prospect Mark Stone will make the trip to New York on Friday night.
Hagelin, who was suspended three games, will miss Game 5 on Saturday night at the Garden.
The switch of lines may give the Rangers a boost, Callahan said.
''We're not creating too much offense five-on-five, so maybe try to get a spark,'' he said. ''We're all playing the same system so no matter who you're playing with, nothing changes. We're comfortable playing with anybody, (so) it doesn't make a difference to us.''
The Senators have scored eight goals in the series. The Rangers have limited the offense of Milan Michalek and Erik Karlsson to one goal apiece. Jason Spezza has added two assists.
''(It's) just being aware of where they are,'' Marc Staal said. ''We've had success against top lines throughout the year. We know we have to be sharp against them. It doesn't matter who you throw out against them, we have a good chance to shut them down.''
Tortorella said in a conference call Thursday that the third period of Game 4 was New York's ''best since (the) first game.'' Staal agreed and suggested it could be a foundation heading into Game 5.
Despite Kyle Turris' game-winning goal in overtime Wednesday night, New York outshot the Senators 14-10 in the third period and extra session.
''Going into the third, we knew we needed to have a big period (and) we did,'' Staal said. ''Obviously, we didn't get a goal, get rewarded like we wanted to, but it's something we can take into the next game.''
The Rangers return to the Garden, where they are 27-12-2. That's second best in the East, behind Pittsburgh and seventh overall in the NHL.
''We love playing at home. We love playing in front of our fans.This building is a hostile environment for an opposing team,'' Brandon Prust said. ''Home ice advantage is huge to have.''
New York has lost its last seven overtime playoff games. The last time the Rangers won an overtime playoff game was April 29, 2007, against the Buffalo Sabres.
The Rangers lost 3-2 in overtime last Saturday night.
''Obviously, we've lost two overtimes, but it's not something we're doing that's costing us that,'' Callahan said. ''Usually, it's every other night you're going right back at it. That's a big thing in playoffs. You can't be too high on a win or too low on a loss.''
BEST OF MAXIM
The New York Rangers held practice this morning at Madison Square Garden, where they will play Game 5 of their series against the Senators tomorrow night. Per Andrew Gross, head coach John Tortorella kept sniping winger Marian Gaborik and star centerman Brad Richards on separate offensive lines from Wednesday's overtime loss in Ottawa.
This top line that performed so well...
The Connecticut Whale keep adding on the prospects. Yesterday it was J.T. Miller, now it’s Sam Noreau. The Rangers 5th round draft pick last year will be joining the Whale for the playoff push. In 58 games with Baie-Comeau Drakkar of the QMJHL, Noreau put up a line of 5-12-17 with 92 PIMs. In eight playoff games, Noreau did not record a point, but had 18 PIMs.
Noreau is a big kid...
So the Rangers lost another heartbreaker last night in overtime. It’s their second loss to the Senators in the series, both coming in overtime. The fan base is on edge, and for good reason. The Senators are a good team, and a team that the Rangers do not match up well against. It’s going to be a stressful series, that’s for sure. But enough of that, let’s get to the...
When there are seven games allotted to decide a playoff series, momentum often swings many different ways over the course of time. Between games, between periods, between goals and between shifts - it's always changing. This is where the heart of the battle in the postseason lies, and this quarterfinal series between the New York Rangers and Ottawa Senators has seen much of...
Series: Tied 2-2.
NYR Leading Scorer: Seven players (Callahan, Richards, Boyle, Gaborik, Stralman, Anisimov, Girardi) with three points
OTT Leading Scorer: Two players (Turris, Foligno) with two poitns
NYR Goaltender: Henrik Lundqvist (4 GS, 1.97 GAA, .940 SV%)
OTT Goaltender: Craig Anderson (4 GS, 2.24 GAA, .920 SV%)
Artem Anisimov-Derek Stepan-Marian Gaborik
Just four games have been played between the New York Rangers and Ottawa Senators in this Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series, but already the drama has been at an extraordinary high. Both teams have experienced sky high over the past week, and both teams have also experienced rock bottom. All locked up at two games apiece, there has not been a clear-cut ‘better’ team as of...
In an interview with Larry Brooks at the New York Post, Glen Sather says he's leaving all the line-up decisions to John Tortorella..."It's completely up to Torts to play who he wants, when he wants, as much as he wants," Sather says. "He has to put out the guys he trusts the most."This isn't the time of year to have debates. It's the time for me...
The New York Rangers had the opportunity last night to pull ahead in the series 3-1 with a win last night. After the first period, I thought they had the win in hand. But like anything in life, nothing is guaranteed. The Good: The Rangers scored on the power play, and not just once but [...]
The Rangers made it through the regular season by dominating teams at even strength. Their powerplay was nothing to write home about, and it was actually considered the biggest weakness in their game. But now, four games into the series with Ottawa, the Senators have managed to expose the Rangers at even strength. The last even strength goal: Brian Boyle’s goal in the third period...
A reoccurring problem for the New York Rangers during the regular season, especially towards the final month, was the way in which they played down to their opponents. For example, one night they would completely dominate the Philadelphia Flyers, knowing that they would have to be at their best to take down one of the East's better teams. A few nights later, though, they might...
Being that the New York Rangers were shutout 2-0 tonight by Craig Anderson and the Ottawa Senators in Game 5, that could be the understatement of the season.
The Rangers did a much better job tonight of getting pucks on net and crashing for rebounds but Anderson turned away all 41 shots that were thrown at him for his second career shutout. The Rangers are now just one loss away...
HARTFORD, April 20, 2012: Connecticut Whale general manager Jim Schoenfeld announced today that the parent New York Rangers have reassigned forward J.T. Miller to the Whale from the Plymouth Whalers of the Ontario Hockey League.
Miller, 19, a 6-2, 195-pound native of East Palestine, Ohio, was the Rangers’ first-round pick (15th overall) in the 2011 NHL Draft. In 61 games with...
Make sure to follow Travis on Twitter!
Winning a game at the ever-raucous Madison Square Garden is no easy feat. Doing so in a pivotal game five against a New York Rangers team looking to break a two-two deadlock in the seven-game series could be the ultimate test.
Worst of all? They'll once again try to stave off the top-seed in the Eastern Conference without their...
Okay all of you who thought the New York Rangers played a good game against the Ottawa Senators in game four of their series could you please stand up and tell us why? Wait we actually have somebody willing to say the Rangers play well so please, to the podium and tell us why?
Seriously coach you are only kidding yourself if you think anyone believes that the team played...
This is the hit that has everyone
buzzing tonight. Senators tough guy Chris Neil hit the Rangers forward Brian Boyle with
this hard hit. Rangers head coach John Tortorella was unhappy with the check after the game
and said that Boyle is concussed.