Thursday, April 4, 2013
Rangers wish Gaborik the best
By Matt Ehalt
As the New York Rangers welcomed three newcomers to the lineup Wednesday, and watched them each score a goal, they also said goodbye to veteran Marian Gaborik.
Gaborik, who was traded to the Columbus Blue Jackets, joined the Rangers in 2009 and had been one of the team's top scorers in his four seasons on Broadway.
"It's a tough situation," Rangers center Brad Richards said. "He wanted to work here, but he's going somewhere where they're welcoming him with open arms and they're excited to have him.
"You look at that and wish him the best. He did a lot for the Rangers, played a lot of good games and put up good numbers and we all wish him the best."
Gaborik's tenure with the Rangers can be described as inconsistent, as he had brilliant offensive seasons and then baffling ones. In 2009-10 and 2011-12, he had his great years as he scored more than 40 goals each season, tallying a combined 162 points.
In his two other season, the results weren't there. In 2010-11, he had just 48 points, and this season he has just 19 despite a scorching start. Gaborik scored five goals in the first month, but has just four over the past two.
While it was assumed that playing with Rick Nash would take Gaborik's game to new heights, he never made that jump.
"It's sad to see someone leave that you got to know, but it's part of the game. I think everybody knows it and understands why it happens sometimes," Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist said. "I really wish [Gaborik] the best. He's such a great player and a great teammate."
BOYLE'S BEST: Rangers forward Brian Boyle scored a career-best four points in Wednesday's victory over Pittsburgh, scoring a goal and adding a career-best three assists. Boyle had just two points entering the game.
"He's playing better and better," Rangers coach John Tortorella said. "The last couple of games, he's beginning to come and do more things for us."
NEW PLAY: As the Rangers finally beat the Penguins for the first time this year, improving to 1-3 against them, Lundqvist saw a different attitude permeate the team. The Rangers will see if that carries to Friday's game in Pittsburgh.
"We were definitely a more in-your-face type of team and we didn't give them much room," Lundqvist said. "A lot of great things today, that's for sure. The forecheck was outstanding. Usually they just fly in the zone, but it was hard for them to make good passes."
DORSETT STATUS: Tortorella said newly acquired forward Derek Dorsett is "a ways away" as he recovers from a broken collarbone that was presumed to sideline him for the season. Dorsett is on IR and last played March 7.