New York Hockey: Stockholm
October, 8, 2011
By Aaron Murphy | ESPNNewYork.com
Recap | Box score | Photos
What it means: It will be a long flight for the Blueshirts as they jet back to New York with two points from a possible four here in Stockholm. The Rangers generated little offensively with only three goals here at the NHL Premiere. Coach John Tortorella will be looking for answers quickly to get the offense on track.
All by myself: Henrik Lundqvist was far and away the Rangers' best player on this overseas journey. In fact, he seemed alone on the ice at times. He kept his team in the game against Anaheim, a game that could have been much worse on the scoreboard without his stellar goaltending in front of his Swedish family and friends. His toe save on Bobby Ryan in the second period was incredible, and he was good against the Ducks' big line throughout.
March of the penalty box: Both teams seemed happy to march to the penalty box with high frequency, the highlight being a fight between Mike Rupp and George Parros at 9:28 of the first period. Parros with the decision in this one, but Rupp showed why he was an important offseason addition to the Rangers, as he provided the big grit when called upon.
Net gains: The Rangers couldn't find many ways to get to the net or create any traffic in front of the Ducks' Jonas Hiller. They had only five shots on goal in the first frame, seven in the second and a measly three in the third. The game total was 15, and Hiller never really looked pushed or in any sort of prolonged danger at the Globe Arena.
19 and counting: Brad Richards had his first goal as a Ranger and it couldn't have come at a bigger time for his new team. With time running out on their European excursion, Richards scored a beautiful goal, top shelf over Hiller's glove at 17:45 of the third to tie it up 1-1. Not many guys can get the puck up that quick and at that angle.
Déjà vu: Back-to-back nights of overtime action here in Stockholm will have Rangers legs tired come Sunday morning. Richards' late goal forced OT against the Ducks and secured the Rangers a point. Nothing was decided in the extra frame, and Lundqvist was again tasked with keeping the Rangers in the mix.
Double take: Lundqvist was good in the shootout with big saves on NHL MVP Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf. Rangers shooters Erik Chistensen and Richards had no luck, and Mats Zuccarello was robbed by Hiller. It came down to Ryan for the Ducks and he was going five-hole and seemed to fan on the shot, but the off-speed attempt squeaked past King Henrik and the Rangers settled for the single point.
What's next: With an OT and a shootout loss here, the Rangers need a win next time out. They'll get a chance next Saturday on Long Island when they visit the Islanders after a week off. After two weeks here in Europe, the team will be happy to get back to more familiar surroundings in New York.
SportsCenter's Linda Cohn, in Stockholm for the Rangers' first two regular-season games, is intent on interviewing Blueshirts goalie Henrik Lundqvist, a native of Sweden. Cohn's quest took her to Lundqvist's understudy, Martin Biron, who riffs on ... sunken ships? And Roxette?