Monday, December 2, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Jets 5, Rangers 2
By Katie Strang
NEW YORK -- The New York Rangers let a 1-0 first-period lead evaporate as the Winnipeg Jets rallied from behind to knock off a sloppy Rangers squad 5-2 Monday at Madison Square Garden. The Blueshirts were lucky to escape from the second period tied 2-2, but they failed to recover in the third as ex-Ranger Olli Jokinen's pair of goals sealed the game and dropped New York back to .500 at 14-14-0.
It was the first time that 26-year-old backup Cam Talbot, who was given his second straight start over Henrik Lundqvist, gave up more than two goals in his first eight NHL starts.
No call: The MSG crowd was livid after Derek Stepan was chopped down on a semi-break by Jets defenseman Tobias Enstrom in the third period. Though fans were hoping for a penalty shot, the Rangers didn't even get a power-play after the failed sequence.
Demotion: Punished for his second-period giveaway that led to Winnipeg's second goal of the night, Derick Brassard was dropped from the first to the fourth line for the remainder of the period. With Benoit Pouliot replacing him on that line, Ryan Callahan made a great hustle play to jam through Brad Richards' rebound to tie the game at 2-2, his first goal in nine games. Pouliot, who picked up an assist on the play, halted an 11-game pointless skid.
Opportunistic on offense: When the Rangers are playing well, they are a team that capitalizes on opponents' mistakes. That's exactly what happened for the Blueshirts' first goal of the night as Mats Zuccarello tipped in a blue-line slapshot for an early 1-0 lead 2:49 into play. The puck bounced back to McDonagh's stick after Jets defenseman Keaton Ellerby failed to clear the zone. Sound familiar? Former coach John Tortorella appeared to lose his mind on the bench during the Rangers' 5-2 win over the Canucks on Saturday after a similar mistake, this one by Vancouver's Alex Edler, ended up in the back of the net.