NYRangers ~ THWARTED BY TIM THOMAS; Boston
The Boston Bruins were in town tonight for an Original Six match-up as the Rangers continued their 85th Year Celebration by unveiling their third alternate/throwback jerseys. The Rangers will wear these jerseys for all remaining Original Six scheduled match-ups. The last time these two clubs met was in Boston as the Rangers were able to leave town with the win.
Early in tonight's contest, the maturation of Brandon Dubinsky continued in the First Period. Has the game begun to slow down for Brandon? His play has gotten so much smarter. These last three games are just mere snapshots in a bigger and still developing picture. An assist by Lundqvist and Callahan on Dubinsky's First Period goal gave the Rangers a 1-0 lead. Brandon's Power Play goal was his 11th of the year.
But after two periods there were two mistakes that led to two Boston goals which were Too Bad for the Rangers tonight. The fact of the matter is it was a well played game to this point. The Rangers had a lot of traffic in front of Tim Thomas. But he was up to the task over the first forty minutes.
The Rangers could have used a little more luck in front of the net tonight against him (Thomas). They played a little too unselfishly blowing a scoring opportunity early in the first period. They later missed another scoring opportunity in the First Period as a Fedotenko pass from behind the red line went right through the crease and past an unsuspecting Anisimov.
Boston tied the score at one each with a goal by Lucic off a turnover in our defensive end with 8:50 left in the 2nd period. Girardi made his play smartly down low but Anisimov was out of position. Marc Staal got caught pinching on the offensive end and Anisimov came back to cover, but left the boards free and open. Boston converged and scored.
Then with 3:25 left in the second period, the Rangers misplayed a puck on the offensive blue line. Unbelievable! ~ I thought as I watched Boston's Rookie Seguin intercept the misplayed puck and blaze his way down ice where he blasted a shot past Henrik. That incredulous goal made the score 2-1 Boston and that's the way the 2nd Period would end.
Boston struck again in the Third Period. Old Man Hockey ~ Marc Recchi scored for Boston on a gimmie, offered up by Henrik Lundqvist. He made the save off the Recchi shot but couldn't secure the puck and it trickled in over the goal line; Totally cheap.
The Rangers soon after capitalized on a turnover by Boston with Stepan making a sweet play to secure the give-away and backhanded a pass to a net-breaking Gaborik where "the Finisher" scored to make it a 3-2 game at the 14:35 mark.
Callahan and Gaborik had great chances to tie the game at three all; chances all thwarted by Thomas.
At 5:35 left in the Third Period, the Rangers went on the Power Play with a two man advantage off a Boston delay of game penalty while already on the PP. Callahan had a shot at the doorstep but did not go in. Thomas made the save with his toe and didn't even know it.
Boston killed off the two man advantage and eventually the Power Play. The Rangers were not meant to score off Thomas tonight it seemed. He was owning the final thirty minutes too.
With 3:30 remaining, the Rangers spent the next 90 seconds buzzing Thomas to no avail. And with 1:00 left in regulation, Lundqvist left the ice for an extra skater. Tim Thomas repelled the extra skater too.
The NHL's top rated defense wasn't so much the problem for the Rangers tonight because we had our quality chances in good supply. What snapped our three game win streak and our problem tonight was Tim Thomas himself. We needed him to see Henrik's gift-goal, and raise him one. He never did. He made almost half of his saves against the Rangers in the Third Period. He made 34 saves in all.
Chara might be the biggest Bruin, but tonight Tim Thomas was the best Bruin. We could have used a little luck against him tonight.
The Free Sean Avery Society!
THE TORTORELLA~SEAN AVERY DILEMMA: FROZEN IN ICE
After first period ~ 2:14 Ice Time ~ 4th Line with Stepan and Boogaard.
After second period ~ 5:17 Ice Time ~ 4th line with Stepan and Boogaard.
After third period ~ 7:11 Total Minutes of Ice Time on 4th Line. Only Boogaard had less ice time tonight.