New York Rangers: Kevin Shattenkirk

Tri-staters competing on U.S. hockey team

February, 8, 2014
With the opening ceremony for the 2014 Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia kicking off on Friday, here is a list of the Tri-state area men's hockey players who will compete for the United States:

Dustin Brown (Ithaca, N.Y.) The Los Angeles Kings captain, who won a Stanley Cup Championship in 2012, will be called upon as one of the members of the U.S. team’s leadership group. He is one of four players returning from the 2010 Olympic squad.

Ryan Callahan (Rochester, N.Y.) The 28-year-old winger and captain of the New York Rangers will make his second Olympic appearance. He was a member of the silver medal-winning squad in Vancouver in 2010.

John Carlson (Colonia, N.J.) One of the youngest members of the U.S. team, Carlson was a member of the U.S. team that won gold in the 2010 IIHF World Junior Hockey Championship. The 24-year-old Washington Capitals defenseman scored the overtime game winner to best Canada in the gold-medal game.

Jimmy Howard (Ogdensburg, N.Y.) The Detroit Red Wings netminder will likely be third on the goaltending depth chart for the U.S. team behind both Ryan Miller and Jonathan Quick.

Patrick Kane (Buffalo, N.Y.) One of the Americans’ most dynamic weapons on offense, Kane has already proven he’s a winner. He’s got two Stanley Cup Championships to his name and won the Conn Smythe Trophy last spring for his MVP performance in the 2013 Stanley Cup playoffs.

Brooks Orpik (Amherst, N.Y.) The veteran defenseman is one of two blueliners from the Pittsburgh Penguins to compete for the U.S. team in Sochi. He’ll play alongside Paul Martin on a team led by his Penguins coach Dan Bylsma.

Max Pacioretty (New Canaan, Conn.) Pacioretty was far from a lock to earn a roster spot on this year’s squad but an impressive start to the 2013-14 season for the Montreal Canadiens helped his cause. He is second in scoring with 26 goals and 37 points in 49 games for the Habs this season.

Kevin Shattenkirk (New Rochelle, N.Y.) Shattenkirk is expected to be one of the key players on the back end for the U.S. team, and he may be headed for a long stretch of hockey even after the Games are over. His St. Louis Blues squad is battling the Chicago Blackhawks for the top spot in the Central Division.

James van Riemsdyk (Middletown, N.J.) The 6-foot-3, 200-pound winger has played alongside offensive dynamo Phil Kessel this season for the Toronto Maple Leafs. The two hope to put that chemistry to good use for the U.S. in Sochi.

Jonathan Quick (Milford, Conn.) The 2012 Conn Smythe Trophy winner, and brother-in-law to former Islander Matt Moulson, will battle Buffalo Sabres netminder Ryan Miller for the top goaltending position.

Power play comes up short against Blues

January, 23, 2014
NEW YORK -- The Rangers knew what to expect from a strong St. Louis Blues team that got absolutely hammered two nights prior, 7-1, by the goal-starved New Jersey Devils.

The Blues delivered on a big, heavy, tight-checking game that left little room to maneuver, and for the most part, the Rangers felt they responded in kind despite the 2-1 defeat, the team's second straight loss.

After the game, the team was happy with its overall game, save for a power play that came up short.

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Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY SportsThe Rangers were blanked on three power-play opportunities.
The Rangers were blanked on all three man-up opportunities, including one in the third period with the chance to tie the game.

Prior to that, the team's sixth-ranked unit had tallied on the power play in eight of the previous 10 games.

"It was the first time in a long time I thought the power play let us down," said veteran center Brad Richards. "We were just not pounding the puck; if there's anything that wasn't on tonight, that was it."

The Rangers have largely exorcised those power-play demons from years past, but the unit that entered Thursday's action with a 21 percent success rate just couldn't get the job done.

"We didn't establish our shot enough, for whatever reason" said coach Alain Vigneault. "That's the No. 1 element, I believe, you have to do on the power play."

The Rangers fell behind 1-0 8:38 into play on Alexander Steen's team-leading 26th goal of the season, one that deflected in off his skate.

Steen later left the game with a lower-body injury, missing the entire third period.

The Rangers didn't lie down, though, as star winger Rick Nash tallied his 10th goal in 10 games, a snipe from the left circle that was the only shot Blues netminder Jaroslav Halak let through all night.

It was a tight 5-on-5 game the entire night, but Sochi-bound Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk ultimately snapped a 1-1 tie on a power-play goal with Nash in the box serving a slashing penalty.

The Rangers' best chance to knot the score came 12:31 into the third period, with Barret Jackman whistled for a crosscheck, though the team's power play didn't even get a shot on goal.

"I don't know if they weren't giving us the opportunity to get the shot through or we just weren't taking that opportunity," Vigneault said.

With the loss, the Rangers dropped to 27-23-3, though they remain in second place in the Metropolitan Division standings, one point ahead of the scorching-hot Columbus Blue Jackets.

Thursday's effort was at least night-and-day different from Tuesday's match against the Islanders, in which the Rangers were outplayed and on the wrong side of the puck all night.

It had to be, with the team knowing that the Blues were looking to shed the embarrassment of Tuesday night's rout in New Jersey.

"We saw the ticker and we knew they were coming with some anger, obviously," defenseman Dan Girardi said. "A team like that never gets beat like that, so we knew they were going to come in hard, but like I said, I thought we matched it, played a pretty solid physical game."

Matched up with one of the top teams in the West, the Rangers were pretty satisfied with how they fared, just not the result.

"It was a good hockey game. We played a real good hockey team," Richards said. "They scored on the power play and we don't."