A King Under Siege
NEW YORK RANGERS: Peter DeBoer's Four Lines Too Much For Depleted Rangers.
New Jersey's collective blue-liners were sporting a horrible +/- rating right up until the Rangers came along, and single handedly turned around many a Devils' defensemen season. The riches of a 4-0 victory were spread throughout the team though, as no Devil registered better than a plus-two.
Early in the opening period, the Rangers got out-hustled by a Devils forecheck, who cashed in on the game's first goal. The Rangers meanwhile had one shot on goal in the first ten minutes of play. Then Adam Henrique slapped a screaming puck from the left circle past through Lundqvist for a 2-0 lead. Two more New Jersey goals later, and Devils goalie Cory Schneider took care of the rest.
It is hard to explain how, or why Brian Boyle was the best Rangers player on the ice, yet didn't lay a single hit on anyone. He led the Blueshirts with four SOG, and won 9 of 13 face-offs. But some-where in Coach Peter DeBoer's full usage of four lines which challenges the Rangers depth is your answer. Four different forwards scored for New Jersey.
It is worth noting that Boyle, Derek Dorsett, J.T. Miller, Benoit Pouliot and Derek Stepan were all +/- zero. Thrust into hasty action, Miller had three shots on goal and threw his body around a little bit. Taylor Pyatt's night wasn't as good. He was a minus-one, with only one shot on goal in more minutes and shifts than Miller.
How do we say - Henrik Lundqvist was not good. The Devils owned a 4-0 second period lead with a total of sixteen shots on goal. Henrik only faced nineteen all night. Henrik is now 2-4-0 this season, and far away from his career percentages. His current 3.45 goals against average is light years away from his career 2.27 mark, while his current .890 save percentage is well below his .920 career mark.
The New Jersey Devils are winless no more, while the Rangers road trip to ruins continues full steam ahead. Victories over Los Angeles and Washington still appear to be nothing more than isolated moments of clarity.