The Rangers got their first win of the season from a Marian Gaborik OT breakaway.
As both the Rangers and the Bruins wiped the sweat from their forehead, they were able to enjoy their first round wins… for an hour before realizing they are playing each other in two days. Catch your breath because the fun has just begun. A classic Original Six matchup for two teams that haven’t met in the postseason since 1973 and two cities that plain and simple don’t like each other (only in sports). Only two weeks removed from Celtics/Knicks playoffs, MSG and TD Bank Garden will host a rivalry that goes back to 1926. If you think this series will be similar to either first round series, think again.
Derek Stepan’s pair of game winners was the first time since 1997 (Adam Graves).
When the New York Rangers met up with the Washington Capital in 2009, the headlines were easy; League’s Elite Scorer vs. League’s Elite Goaltender. As it turned out, that’s exactly what happened in that first matchup. Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist stole three of the first four game and Capitals winger Alexander Ovechkin produced goals before his teammates joined the party in Game 5 to down the Rangers in seven games. In 2011, the script was very much the same. The Rangers had to keep the Capitals offense down and the Caps had to break through the Rangers defense. The Caps won that series in 5, which featured a Double OT win in Game 4, but last year was different. The Capitals featured a more defensive style as neither team scored more than 3 goals/game in the series that the Rangers won in seven games. So far, this series appears to be MUCH different.
There was no scoring until Mike Green’s one-timer crossed the goal line.
There’s always that saying in life- usually when talking to a lonely person at the end of a bar slowly sipping a drink- when they talk about, “The one that got away.” Perhaps it was a moment when things were perfect, but just bad timing. Perhaps it was a bad situation made good, but ended in tragedy. Perhaps it was all just the dream where you awoke without what you wanted.
Last season, Brad Richards’ goal in the closing seconds of Game 5 was the most memorable moment.
“Deja Vu all over again” – Yogi Berra
For the 4th time in the last FIVE seasons, the New York Rangers will face the Washington Capitals. It’s been a broken record, but most of the key participants are the same through the years. In 2009, the Rangers fell to the Capitals in seven games. Two seasons later, the Capitals finished off the Rangers in a tight five game series with a dominating Game 5 victory. Last season, the Rangers overcame the spunky Caps to win a dramatic series in seven games- that were really more like 8 if you included the Triple OT Game 3. To say that these teams are familiar with each other is an understatement, but there are differences through the years as well.
In 2012, the New York Rangers became the only team since 1994 to face the #6,7 and 8 seeded teams. This season, they are more likely to join LA as the only team to face the #1, 2 and 3 seeds since the Rangers are currently ranked 8th. A win today will clinch a non-8th seed and a matchup against either the Washington Capitals, the Montreal Canadiens or the Boston Bruins. Now every team will say, “Doesn’t matter who we play,” but we’ll dissect that notion.
The NHL’s largest audience for a hockey game in 2008.
In 2008, the NHL introduced the Winter Classic at Ralph Wilson Stadium and many sports writers scoffed that the gimmick would be unsuccessful as the NHL would take on college football’s day. The game itself garnered plenty of interest as Sidney Crosby’s shootout winner passed through Buffalo goalie Ryan Miller’s legs and unexpectedly drew a 5 share, 2.6 rating and 3.8 million viewers. The NHL found itself a hit and now it plans to add 5 more outdoor games for the 2013-2014 season. Is it going to saturate the product or expand audiences?