Rivalry Night on NHL on NBCSN was rather one-sided Wednesday night.
The New York Rangers scored twice in the second period but had the run of the play for pretty much the entire night in a 2-0 victory over the host Washington Capitals.
The Rangers, playing their sixth game of a nine-game road trip to begin the season, not only got the victory, but they outshot the Capitals 36-22.
- Remember when Brad Richards was a healthy scratch for the Rangers in the 2013 Stanley Cup playoffs? Seems like a distant memory. Richards had a pair of assists in Wednesday’s win for New York, and now has seven points in his first six games.
- The Capitals had the best power play coming into the night, operating at 36.4 per cent. However, they were unsuccessful in four opportunities Wednesday.
- How about this statistics, from the NHL: the Rangers were 87-0-6 in their last 93 regular season games when leading after two periods. Make that 94 games.
- Rangers forward Derek Stepan left the game early in the third period but later returned after taking a hit from Capitals forward Troy Brouwer.
- Line of the night (below):
As PHT’s mentioned before, the Florida Panthers stand as a fascinating contrast between youth and experience.
Let’s not kid ourselves, though; fresh faces usually beat out gray beards, at least when it comes to teams that are still trying to build toward contender status.
While it’s by no means official, two Panthers beat writers – the Miami Herald’s George Richards and the Florida Sun-Sentinel’s Harvey Fialkov – report that the Panthers are likely to pass on Martin Havlat.
It wasn’t just about the likes of Jonathan Huberdeau and Nick Bjugstad leading the charge. Other young Panthers (maybe most notably Quinton Howden and Connor Brickley) made the team, thus making Havlat less necessary.
One would assume that it might be tough for the 34-year-old to find work, at least if he insists upon only an NHL deal.
Health issues continue to dog him, but he’s no longer one of those guys who tantalizes with talent when he is healthy enough to play.
Havlat also doesn’t really bring much to the table defensively. While other veterans can kill penalties and show a little more verstaility, Havlat’s greatest selling point is scoring.
Could this be it for a solid career that may nonetheless end with a “What if?” or two?
Considering all of the controversy surrounding the 41-game suspension for Raffi Torres, some might have lost track of the guy who received that hit: Jakob Silfverberg.
The good news is that, at the moment, it seems like he’s OK.
The Anaheim Ducks announced that he skated on his own and will be involved in the team’s next practice:
That falls in line with some of the fall-out from the hit, as head coach Bruce Boudreau let out a relieved “thank goodness” at the young forward seemingly dodging a bullet.
Here’s video of the hit and the suspension decision:
Silfverberg, 24, enjoyed a nice breakout in 2014-15, especially during the playoffs.
Keep in mind that injuries can sometimes crop up later than expected, especially potential head injuries/concussions. Still, it seems like the initial reaction is that the damage was minimal.