If you had to pick a low point to the Rangers’ season, it probably came Dec. 20 at MSG with a 5-3 loss to the Islanders.
“This was definitely a frustrating game,” said goalie Henrik Lundqvist, whose record fell to 2-4-2 since signing his big contract extension. “There’s no question we beat ourselves.”
But ever since that frustration, the Rangers have found some life. On Saturday, they devastated the Leafs in Toronto, winning 7-1 and improving their record to 5-2-0 since the Isles loss.
“I’m not quite sure if you can put one thing specific on it,” coach Alain Vigneault said about his team’s 50-shot barrage versus the embarrassed Leafs, per The Record. “We moved the puck well, we got some good opportunities and we were able to finish on a couple.”
Tonight, the Columbus Blue Jackets pay a visit to MSG, a rink that will be hosting a lot of hockey over the next little while. The Rangers will play eight of their next 10 at home, a prime opportunity to move into a playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
PS — one of the Rangers’ two road games in their next 10 will be Wednesday in Chicago, on NBCSN, against the Stanley Cup champs.
Flames keep showing life, Stars stumble once again
If you think the Dallas Stars are struggling because of defense more than anything else, then you’ll make sure to keep the video above “on file.”
There Kari Lehtonen was, helpless on a 2-on-0 rush for the Calgary Flames, which Johnny Gaudreau finished with calm and ease. For some, that goal is the symbol of the Stars’ season.
Either way, it was a painful goal in the Flames’ 2-1 win against the Stars. Calgary won despite Dallas firing 30 shots on goal versus the Flames’ 20.
One team climbing, the other stumbling
With that, the Flames are now on a four-game winning streak. Since falling to 5-10-1 on Nov. 12, the Flames have gone 9-3-1 in their last 13 games, pushing them to 14-13-2 overall. Gaudreau coming back is the icing on the cake after Chad Johnson really took charge of the Flames’ top job.
During a similar span, the Stars can’t seem to get it together. Dallas stood at 6-6-3 after beating the Oilers 3-2 on Nov. 11. They’re now 10-11-6, essentially standing in place as a .500 team.
Dallas can’t seem to get momentum going, a thought that might have left them envious of the team on the other end of the ice on Tuesday.
On Tuesday, it wasn’t just about Jack Eichel vs. Connor McDavid. Instead, it was a clash between a fleet of young scorers who were in their prime, with the Buffalo Sabres coming up on top against the Edmonton Oilers.