Monday, November 4, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Ducks 2, Rangers 1
By Katie Strang
The New York Rangers' quest for revenge against the Anaheim Ducks was thwarted by a tremendous performance from Ducks goaltender Frederik Andersen, who was superb in holding the Rangers at bay, 2-1, Monday night at Madison Square Garden. Ryan Callahan was back in action after missing almost three weeks with a hand injury, but the Rangers captain's return was spoiled by one of the best teams in the Western Conference. Entering the game with a chance to get to .500 the Rangers let it slip past, falling to 6-8-0 on the season.
Gaining ground: The Rangers took some momentum into the second period on Michael Del Zotto's goal late in the frame. Andersen was stellar throughout much of the first 40 minutes of play, making a few clutch saves to deny Mats Zuccarello from the door step in the first and robbing Brad Richards in the second, but he surrendered his first of the night while sprawled face-first in his crease during a goal-mouth scramble. Del Zotto's goal, which cut Anaheim's lead to 2-1, was his first of the season.
At first glance: A couple of Rangers mistakes ended up in the back of their own net in a first period to be forgotten for the Blueshirts. A breakdown that left Corey Perry all alone down low cost the Rangers first, as the top-line winger lifted his own rebound for a 1-0 lead just 2:29 into play. Brad Richards' neutral zone giveaway later in the frame would count against the Rangers too as New Jersey native Kyle Palmieri sniped a shot from the left faceoff circle for a 2-0 lead midway through the period.
Miller scratched:J.T. Miller, who has already been sent down to the minors once this season, appears to be on the outside looking in once again. The young forward, who struggled in the team’s 5-1 win against the Carolina Hurricanes on Saturday, sat out Monday's game to make room for Callahan's return to the lineup.
Sneaky stuff: Rangers coach Alain Vigneault was not pleased when center Derek Stepan was the recipient of a sly elbow from Ducks defenseman in the second period. No penalty was called and Stepan was uninjured on the play, but Vigneault appeared livid with the liberty taken against one of the team's most important young players.