He is doing that along with taking faceoffs, killing penalties
and playing tough defense.
Shanahan scored his NHL-leading seventh goal of the young
season, and the Rangers outlasted the New Jersey Devils 4-2 Monday
New York coach Tom Renney is maximizing what he has in the
seven-time All-Star, who despite 605 NHL goals is way more than
just a point grabber.
"My scoring is getting a lot of attention but I really go out
and concentrate on playing a complete game," Shanahan said. "I
get just as much of a rush out of making defensive plays or killing
off a penalty. I just feel very involved."
New York entered having allowed six power-play goals in two
games. The Devils entered having scored six goals in 24 man-advantage
chances. There was no reason to think the Rangers would kill off
all seven Devils opportunities Monday, score a short-handed goal,
and cash in on their only power play.
"It's nice when you appreciate your opponent because they will
either bring out the best or the worst in you," said Renney, who
called the disparity in penalty calls "brutal."
"We seem to be able to rise to the occasion against these
guys," he said.
From Renney, to Shanahan to Henrik Lundqvist, who shined in
making 34 saves, the Rangers claimed this was merely a needed win
in October and not some measuring stick against the team that swept
them in last season's playoffs.
Shanahan, who came to the Rangers after netting 40 goals last
season with Detroit, has scored in all but one of New York's six
games -- including four power-play tallies. Aaron Ward and Jason
Ward also scored in the second period for the Rangers, who snapped
a three-game losing streak in which they allowed 16 goals.
Scott Gomez also scored for New Jersey. Shanahan made the most
of the Rangers' only power play, and Jason Ward scored while New
York was short-handed. Lundqvist threw his stick into the crowd
after being chosen as the game's first star.
"The whole team was on our toes, including me," said
Lundqvist, who allowed 16 goals in his first four games. "It has
been a tough week for us and we really wanted to get back to
Aaron Ward broke the scoreless deadlock with his first goal
since leaving the Stanley Cup champion Carolina Hurricanes this
summer. And he seemed as surprised as anyone to see the red light
go on behind Martin Brodeur.
The defenseman fired a slap shot that whizzed by teammate Blair
Betts and forced Rangers forward Ryan Hollweg to duck in front. It
nestled into the net's top left corner to make it 1-0 at 8:24.
"Phil Niekro reared his ugly head from the point," Ward said
of his seeing-eye knuckler that gave him 32 NHL goals and 100
points over 12 seasons. "When I get a call from my buddies back in
Detroit asking how I scored, I'm telling them it was a laser top
shelf -- as usual."
The lead lasted 35 seconds before Gomez tied it. Brian Gionta,
who scored four goals in two games, nearly had another but had to
settle for an assist as Gomez swept in a rebound of his shot that
slipped behind Lundqvist at 8:59.
"We were able to get to them a lot and get some quality
chances," said Brodeur, who made 25 saves. "But we made some
It took until only 3:09 was left in the second period before the
Rangers received a power play. The crowd acknowledged it with a
sarcastic standing ovation. Shanahan whistled a shot from above the
left circle past Brodeur's glove at 18:29.
Jason Ward then followed up Matt Cullen's rebound to make it 3-1
with under 35 seconds remaining in the period.
Although they were sloppy, the Rangers managed to withstand the
Devils' pressure -- helped greatly by Lundqvist's play in the second
New York bounced back after showing few signs during the losing
streak of the disciplined style Renney implemented last season
during the team's unexpected run to the playoffs for the first time
Rangers D Thomas Pock was scratched for the first time this
season to make room for Darius Kasparaitis' season debut. ... New
Jersey recalled 30-year-old defenseman Alex Brooks from Lowell of
the AHL to make his NHL debut in place of Brad Lukowich (ankle). He
assisted on Gomez's goal. ... Jagr has two goals and nine assists
in a six-game point streak.