With Respect For The St. Louis Family,
A Moment Of Silence
NEW YORK RANGERS: Blueshirts Looking For An Extended Run Off-Broadway.
Tex's Rangers showed resiliency Friday night, and for a game, emerged as the more formidable team. Or, Marc Andre Fleury finally performed as I expected. In any event, the series is coming back to the Garden for Game Six.
The Rangers peppered Fleury with 34 shots, with 5 making their way through. That's the rate I anticipated, although the Penguins goalie clearly had other plans in games Three and Four. The Penguins answered with 31 shots on goal, but only one got by Lundqvist.
For the series, the Rangers have taken 133 SOG, and scored 9 times. The Penguins have totaled 144 SOG, and have scored 11 times.
Chris Krieder, and his size, presence, and speed, are making an immediate impact. Overall, the Rangers threw their bodies around much more effectively in Game Five. Kreider was the one who set the tempo with his first period goal, and later assisted on Kevin Klein's 3rd period goal.
The Rangers best line in the playoffs took care of the rest. Derick Brassard scored a pair of goals, Mats Zuccarello tallied another, and Ryan McDonagh scored his first of the playoffs. It was only the 4th goal by a Rangers defenseman in the playoffs.
MatsZucs, Benoit Pouliot, Brad Richards, Carl Hagelin, and Derick Brassard are all tied for the Rangers lead with 3 goals each.
Kreier and McDonagh were also responsible for finally resuscitating the power play. The Blueshirts were 2 for 3 on the man advantage, which now makes them 5 for 50 (10%) in 12 post season games.
Some things however, have not changed. Rick Nash is now up to 49 shots without a goal. His shooting percentage, is obviously zero. He did however, notch (only) his 5th assist of the playoffs.
How Ivgeni Malkin split two Rangers defensemen en route to a 2nd period goal was a bit ponderous. But in truth, it was a prime example of how bad a series Marc Staal is having.
Perhaps, Chris Krieder, along with Carl Hagelin, can continue speeding up play for the Rangers, and all the Blueshirts can crowd Marc Andre Fleury again, as they did in Game Five.
One win changes everything.