New York Hockey: Tyler Seguin

Morning skate roundup: Rangers at Bruins

January, 19, 2013
With less than six hours remaining before the puck drops on the 2013 season, the excitement is building at TD Garden for Saturday night's season-opening Original Six matchup between the New York Rangers and Boston Bruins.

No real surprises lineup-wise. The Rangers will start 2012 Vezina Trophy winner Henrik Lundqvist in goal. Stu Bickel will slot in as the team's sixth defenseman on the third pairing with Michael Del Zotto, while both Steve Eminger and Matt Gilroy sit out. Tough guy Arron Asham will also be a scratch as he serves the one game remaining on his outstanding four-game suspension from last season's playoffs.

AHL call-up forward Brandon Segal will replace Asham on the fourth line.

Saturday's game between the top two finishers in the Eastern Conference last season will be Rick Nash's debut with the Rangers. Read more about what he expects from the milestone here.

Nash, a big body with superstar skills, is regarded as the piece that could push the Rangers to the forefront of the Stanley Cup contender conversation.

"It raises expectations," captain Ryan Callahan said of Nash's arrival. "Expectations were already high after the season we had last year, so you just have to handle it the right way. ... You can just see his talent on the ice. He's going to help us in a lot of departments."

Rookie Chris Kreider will make his heralded return to Boston after leading Boston College to a national championship last season in the NCAA's Frozen Four. Kreider is expecting around 20 family members to attend Saturday night's game.

"It's obviously a little special," he said. "I'm excited. It's Boston."

Neither coach is expecting a perfect game from his respective club with the lengthy absence caused by the lockout.

"There's always rust. It's a game of mistakes," Rangers coach John Tortorella said. "We're not going to over-think it. It's our first game and we're tying to go about our business as best we can."

What's Claude Julien's game plan? "Keep things simple. Don't complicate it and make it harder than it has to be."

The Bruins return with a top line of Brad Marchand, Patrice Bergeron and Tyler Seguin. Seguin led the Bruins in scoring with 67 points last year (29 goals, 38 assists) and hopes to build on that performance in his third professional season.

Tuuka Rask will be in goal for the Bruins. Rookie Dougie Hamilton will play in his first NHL game. The 19-year-old defenseman was the Bruins' first-round pick -- ninth overall -- in the 2011 draft.

Rapid Reaction: Bruins 3, Rangers 2

November, 17, 2010

Recap | Box score

In a game filled with odd-man rushes from the first whistle to the last, a soft goal sneaking under Henrik Lundqvist's arm somehow accounted for the game-winning margin in the Bruins' 3-2 victory over the Rangers Wednesday night at the Garden.

Striking a Match

Bruins bench boss Claude Julien rolled his top D pairing of Zdeno Chara and Andrew Ference against the Callahan-Anisimov-Dubinsky line. That trio acquitted themselves okay in the first 20, but more importantly it opened up some great chances for the Gaborik-Christensen-Frolov line. Not that they had anything to show for it through two periods (see below).

Julien switched it up to start the third, putting Chara's pair against Marian Gaborik and his mates.

He Shoots, He … Wait, Nevermind

While Gaborik and his linemates may have had the three best scoring chances of the first period, none of them converted. In fact, none of them even managed a shot on goal despite set-ups that could have been served on platinum platters.

An early 2-on-1 for Gaborik and Erik Christensen was spoiled when Christensen deferred on the shot and dished to a teammate that didn’t exist.

Gaborik later picked off a clearing attempt along the boards at the blue line, sliding it to Christensen. Dipping behind the net, Christensen set up Alexander Frolov right at the top of the crease but the puck slid by him without a shot.

Finally, another 2-on-1 with eight minutes left in the first went to waste when Frolov shuffled a prime one-timer pass near the right faceoff dot to Gaborik, who promptly fanned on the shot attempt.

I Fought the Law ...

It must have felt to fans that the Rangers were being punished by the refs through the first period, particularly after not earning a single power play Monday in Pittsburgh.

The Rangers took the first two penalties of the game, and were denied a call late in the first when Gaborik was taken down on the good offensive chance. The check appeared to be hip-to-hip on replay but it was a very close call and could have been called a trip (particularly since the Rangers just endured two minutes without Daniel Girardi for a hook). But the referee’s arm was never raised up and shortly thereafter Gaborik coughed up the puck on the Bruin blue line and took a tripping call trying to break up a breakway. The Garden fans were not pleased.

It’s also worth noting that the first two Rangers penalties were taken to prevent odd-man chances for the B’s. The third -- too many men -- didn’t exactly reflect well on the Rangers either.

PK Play

The Rangers were superb in killing the game’s first penalty, seemingly pinning the B’s behind their own goal line for a solid 20 seconds thanks to a great forecheck by Ryan Callahan and Brandon Dubinsky.

Playing with Fire

The Rangers appeared to be on the brink of giving up goal No. 1, yielding three odd-man rushes in the late first and early second, including a great shorthanded chance for the B’s during the Blueshirts’ four-minute PP. But it was the Rangers’ red-hot rising star that struck first.

Callahan’s heads-up tap off the boards sprung Dubinsky who sent a wrister through Tim Thomas at 7:10 of the second.

Finally Burned

The Rangers essentially spent the second period giving up odd-man rushes to the Bruins. Milan Lucic scored B’s first goal after Patrice Bergeron beat Girardi down the length of the ice to a loose puck in the corner. A quick pass to Nathan Horton and on to Lucic, all alone in front, was all it took to finally make the Rangers pay.

Marc Staal had pinched on the play to throw a check just inside the blueline, leaving Girardi alone to chase the puck from the opposite side of the ice. Girardi lost the race and it cost them a goal.

And after Rangers rookie Derek Stepan was stoned in front of crease 5:54 left in second (his second great chance of the game), the Bruins’ Toronto trade bounty, Tyler Seguin, whistled a wrister past Lundqvist’s ear off the rush for the B’s second goal of the night. Seguin’s wrister was rocket powered and he snapped it off with a Rattlesnake-like release. Not much Lundqvist could do but wave.

He probably could have stopped the next one though ...

That Went In?

The Bruins took a two-goal lead less than two minutes into the third when a Mark Recchi shot snuck under the arm of Lundqvist and trickled over the goal line, clearing it by maybe three inches. It was a tough break for the Rangers to absorb, and one that Lundqvist felt absolutely awful about after the game.

This Could Be The Start of Something ...

The Bruins also featured their share of flat-footed D-men giving up odd-man rushes and the Rangers (finally) cashed in when Stepan (rotated to the top line in the third) snared the puck at the blue line and raced in on a two-on-one (man, I wish I had a hot-key for that phrase) with Gaborik, who took the feed and finished on his forehand around a helpless Thomas at 5:36 in the third.

Gaborik almost struck again about two minutes later on a redirection, but Thomas just squeezed his leg pads together in time.

Late Chances

The Rangers had several quality changes to knot the score late, including a 5-on-3 power play for 1:46 with six minutes left after Sean Avery drew a high-sticking penalty and Chara sent a clearance attempt straight over the glass. But a scrambling save by Thomas on Callahan snuffed out the best chance on the PP and the B's hung on after Lundqvist headed off for the extra attacker.