Tag: New York Rangers

Washington Capitals v New York Rangers - Game Two

Once again, Rick Nash isn’t scoring in the playoffs


Google the name “Rick Nash” with the phrase “get inside” and you get over 20,000 matches.

That should tell you something about 1) how closely Nash is put under the microscope and 2) what many believe he has to do in order to score goals.

That includes him.

“You just have to keep trying to get on the inside,” Nash said, per NHL.com. “I can’t allow my game to be completely on the outside. I have to get to the inside; that’s the biggest thing. You can always do more. There’s always more I can do to try to score.”

Nash has only scored once in these playoffs, despite registering 25 shots. That stat line is reminiscent of last year’s, when he scored just three goals on 83 shots in the postseason, as well as the year’s before that, when he had just one goal on 42 shots.

In his career, Nash has just six playoff goals on 163 shots, for a remarkably low shooting percentage of 3.7. In the regular season, his career shooting percentage is dramatically higher, at 12.5.

“When I look at our personnel and at who can do the net-front presence and still be able to tip pucks, take some checks in front and maybe slide some pucks in, I look at [Chris Kreider] and [Nash],” coach Alain Vigneault said, per the New York Post.

Of course, that’s easier said than done in the playoffs, when teams protect the front of the net with more gusto and the officials tend to let more of the gusto go.

It’s also easier said than done against the Capitals, who boast some pretty big boys on the back end.

Game 3 of Caps-Rangers goes tonight in D.C. The series is tied 1-1.

Related: Five team stats you may find interesting

Five team stats you may find interesting

Calgary Flames v Anaheim Ducks - Game One

5 — The number of power-play goals for the Anaheim Ducks in these playoffs. That’s been huge for them, especially after they struggled with the man advantage during the regular season (28th, 15.7%). On paper, the Ducks’ power play should be deadly. Corey Perry is one of the top snipers in hockey, Ryan Getzlaf is one of the top play-making forwards, and Sami Vatanen is the kind of creative blue-liner that can open lanes from up top. Those three have combined for 11 PP points in six games.

45.6% — Minnesota’s Corsi close, the lowest percentage of all 16 playoff teams. The Wild were one of the top possession teams during the regular season, but facing the Blues and Blackhawks in the postseason has been a challenge. The Wild, like the Ducks, have taken advantage of their power-play opportunities, scoring six times on just 17 opportunities. But they’ll likely need to control a bit more of the five-on-five play if they hope to get back in the series.

.922 — Montreal’s team save percentage, No. 8 out of 16. The Habs had the highest team save percentage (.926) out of 30 during the regular season. And while you can’t say Carey Price has been bad in the playoffs, because he definitely hasn’t been, the Canadiens simply don’t score enough for him to be anything but great.

6 — Times out of nine that the Washington Capitals have surrendered the first goal. They’re 2-4 in that situation and 3-0 when they score first. As a whole, the team that’s scored first in these playoffs has gone 35-20. So yeah, for the most part, it’s been pretty important to get that 1-0 lead.

6.3% — Five-on-five shooting percentage for the New York Rangers, 12th out of 16. The Blueshirts finished the regular season at 8.8 percent, fourth out of 30, with some arguing there was bound to be a regression. Rick Nash, in a related story, has just one goal on 25 shots.

Here’s your Stanley Cup playoff TV schedule for tonight

Alex Ovechkin, Dan Boyle

A quick look at what games will be on what channels in tonight’s Stanley Cup playoff action…

Rangers at Capitals, 7:30 p.m. ET on NBCSN

The New York Rangers visit the Washington Capitals in the lone game on the NHL schedule tonight.

The Caps will look to bounce back from a poor start in Game 2, which left them trailing 2-0 after 20 minutes. Washington has won all three games following a loss this postseason.

Washington recalled defenseman Nate Schmidt from the American Hockey League’s Hershey Bears in case Tim Gleason (undisclosed) is unable to play. Gleason did not practice on Sunday.

The Rangers primary concern is shutting down Alex Ovechkin. The Caps’ captain has four goals and four assists in nine playoff games this season including three points through the first two games of the second round. It’s a welcome sight for Washington as Ovechkin had just one goal and assist in seven games during the Caps’ first round loss to the Rangers in 2013.

Lundqvist caught by surprise on spectacular Ovechkin goal


Henrik Lundqvist apparently wasn’t expecting it. While falling to the ice, Alex Ovechkin released a perfect wrist shot to beat the New York Rangers goalie on the blocker side.

It was a beautiful goal from Ovechkin, who looked unstoppable as he split New York’s ‘D’ with a determined effort, fell to the ice and made his shot. However, the Capitals couldn’t complete the comeback and lost Game 2, with the Rangers tying up this second-round series.

“He’s one of the best players in the game, there’s no question,” said Lundqvist, as per CSN Washington.

“There’s not a lot of players that can do what he does out there and it’s a challenge for us every game to try to stop him. But to be able to shoot it that hard on your knees, he definitely surprised me a little bit there.

“But you have to be ready for anything, especially that line. They’re playing really well, so you just have to be on your toes out there.”

Kreider ‘a huge difference maker’ for Rangers


It didn’t take long, only 38 seconds, for New York Rangers forward Chris Kreider to make an impact on Saturday’s Game 2 against the Washington Capitals.

His goal, which came off a rebound in the first minute of play, got the Rangers started on their way to a dominant first period and an eventual win to even the series at one game apiece.

Kreider could’ve had more, too, his speed a factor throughout the game. He led all New York forwards in ice time, and had eight shot attempts to go with four hits.

“He’s a huge difference maker. He puts a big influence on the game for us the way he can skate, the way he can hit and his shot and his physicality,” said Ryan McDonagh, as per Rangers Rants. “All together it’s a tough combo to defend for anyone.  It’s a good sign that he was able to get it going and he’s got to continue that for us if we want to be successful.”

Added Dan Boyle: “He’s been doing it all year. He’s the fastest player I’ve ever played with by far and I’ve played with some pretty fast players. Possibly the strongest. He’s done it all year long.”