Rangers Week in Review: All Good Things and Kerfuffles

Rangers Week in Review: All Good Things and Kerfuffles

by December 11, 2021 0 comments

The New York Rangers have been on a roll, and it was bound to come to an end eventually as all good things must. However, it’s not the end of the world for the boys in blue. They were able to accept defeat and then come back to start what is hopefully another win streak.

This week, it appears that Jacob Trouba became a wanted man in Illinois and Colorado. But, on the other hand, he did get a Gordie Howe hat trick in back-to-back games. He became only the second player to record a Gordie Howe hat trick on back-to-back days, joining the Canadiens’ Doug Risebrough, who did it in February 1975.

New York Rangers @ Chicago Blackhawks
December 7, 2021
United Center
W 6-2

1st Period

01:01-Trouba, Artemi Panarin & Ryan Strome
01:44-Erik Gustafsson
07:09-Kirby Dach, Alex DeBrincatDylan Strome

2nd Period

03:19-Panarin, Mika Zibanejad & Chris Kreider

3rd Period

04:59-Kreider, Adam Fox & Panarin
12:10-Kevin Rooney, Fox & Ryan Reaves
16:50-Panarin, Trouba & Zibanejad
18:41-Barclay Goodrow, Reaves & Rooney

Fans knew it was going to be an interesting game when Trouba opened the scoring 61 seconds in, and then 43 seconds later, Gustafsson scored his first goal of the season for Chicago. Panarin’s assist on Trouba’s goal gave him his 500th point, making him the fifth-fastest player to 500 points among active players. It was also a family affair as both Strome brothers tallied an assist in the first period.

The second period was not much to talk about; both teams were playing strong. However, the game came to a screeching halt after Trouba hit Jujhar Khaira while Khaira was looking down at the puck. It was ruled a clean hit, but that did not stop Trouba from having a target on his back for the remainder of the game. The Blackhawks’ Riley Stillman fought Trouba about five minutes later, both getting five-minute majors for fighting.

Throughout the second and third periods, both teams continued to take penalties. The Rangers scored goals on both of their powerplays, and the Blackhawks were zero for four. New York turned it on in the third, scoring four goals and outshot Chicago 30-26 en route to their second victory over the Blackhawks within a four-day period.

New York Rangers vs. Colorado Avalanche
December 8, 2021
Madison Square Garden
L 7-3

1st Period

04:11-Mikko Rantanen, Nazem Kadri & Devon Toews
06:56-Trouba, Panarin & Reaves
18:15- Nils Lundkvist, Filip Chytil & Trouba

2nd Period

04:48-Nathan MacKinnon, Gabriel Landeskog, & Samuel Girard
06:11-Kadri, Cale Makar & Valeri Nichushkin
10:42-Alex Newhook, Girard & Toews
17:14-Logan O’Connor, Kadri & Kurtis MacDermid

3rd Period

11:52-Chytil, Alexis Lafreniere & K’Andre Miller
13:25-Rantanen, Erik Johnson & Nicolas Aube-Kubel

The Rangers wanted to keep the streak going, welcoming the Avalanche to the Garden. However, it didn’t turn out so great for New York. They were able to stay in the game for the first period but could not keep up with a well-rested Colorado team who is on a roll this season. The Rangers were tired and sloppy; the Avalanche knew it and took full advantage of it.

The second period went Colorado’s way, scoring five unanswered goals. Trouba delivered a hard hit to an opponent for the second game in a row. It was an open-ice hit with a lot of head contact, and Landeskog immediately challenged Trouba, and both men were evenly matched and up to the task. Both received five-minute major penalties for fighting, and Landeskog also received a two-minute penalty for unsportsmanlike conduct. MacKinnon was removed from the ice and out into the concussion protocol, but he was back in time to start the third period.

Lundkvist got his first NHL goal, but the horrendous loss overshadowed it. This game was essential a throwaway for the Rangers. It’s unfortunate that Adam Huska made his NHL debut in this disaster of a game.

New York Rangers @ Buffalo Sabres
December 10, 2021
KeyBank Center
W 2-1

1st Period

 04:48-Zibanejad, Panarin & Fox

2nd Period

 09:47-Lafreniere, Fox & Chytil

3rd Period

14:37-Brett Murray, Mark Pysyk, & Kyle Okposo

New York was looking to bounce back and hopefully start a new winning streak. They did not disappoint, although it was a nail-biter at the end. The Rangers held the lead for most of the game, but the Sabres had a late push in the third period. They almost succeeded.

The best moment in this game was when Zibanejad got his goal. He kicked off the goal-scoring for the team and got him out of his drought. It was his fifth goal of the season, with his last goals coming in the loss to the Edmonton Oilers at the beginning of November. It has been 14 games since then. Fans can only hope this will kickstart something great for him this season.

The Sabres decided to make things interesting in the last five minutes of the game. They cut the lead to one goal, thanks to Murray. With under a minute remaining in the game, it appeared Buffalo scored to tie the game. However, the Sabres were actually offside, negating the goal. The Rangers seem to have Toronto to thank, and they were able to hold the Sabres off for the remaining seconds of the game.

Fox’s two assists in this game make him tied with Brian Leech as the second-fastest defenseman in Rangers history to reach 100 assists. It took them both 151 games, with Sergei Zubov ahead of them doing it in 127 games. Fox is also the 22nd defenseman in NHL history to tally 100 points in 135 or fewer career games.

What We Learned This Week

Despite still not being able to put together a full 60-minute game, they keep churning the wins out. By any means necessary. It’s not always pretty, but in the end, a win is a win.

After the win at Buffalo, the Rangers are currently first place in the Metropolitan Division. They are also second in the NHL behind the Florida Panthers. This type of season was not expected of them, especially so soon in the season. However, the players and fans need to keep in mind that there is still a long way to go before the end of the season. Anything can happen between now and then.

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Main Image Credit: Embed from Getty Images

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