The Tuesday night thriller between the New York Rangers (13-5-3) and the Pittsburgh Penguins (14-7-4) had everything an NHL fan wants and more. As the Madison Square Garden faithful were treated to a high-impact, sharp shooting classic.
The tone for the rivalry between was set at 0:16 when Sean Avery exchanged blows with Tyler Kennedy twice in one game. In a game that featured 18 penalties called, combined with a nail biter of a finish.
James Neal (14) stared the scoring salvo at the 17:56 mark of the first period, cashing in on a power play wrister to give the Penguins a 1-0 lead. New York responded with a four goal second period that got the Garden rocking.
Captain Ryan Callahan (9) started the Blueshirts barrage at the 8:01 mark of the second period, tallying a tip-in goal to tie the game a 1-1. The rookie combo of John Mitchell and Carl Hagelin combined for their third point in three games for the Rangers at the 14:09 mark.
Starting on a beauty of a pass from Hagelin (2), who set up his linemate Mitchell who wristed home his first goal for the Rangers. Brad Richards (9) scored on a beauty of a shot, that floated past the glove of the Penguins’ keeper to give the Blueshirts a 3-1 lead at the 15:39 mark.
For Richards, the forward now has 29 points in 28 games against the Penguins, and continues to grow more-and-more comfortable playing in New York. If Richards can continue to skate like this, there is no telling where the Blueshirts will wind-up once this season is over-for fans of the Red, White and Blue it will hopefully be with a Stanley Cup.
Blueshirts sniper Marian Gaborik (11) added to the team’s cushion at the 18:26 mark, on a power play wrister. That’d score prove to be a vital one for New York, as the Penguins gave the fans in attendance grey hairs.
Pittsburgh sniper Evgeni Malkin (9) cut into the New York lead at the 19:53 mark of the second period, as the Penguins started to gain momentum at this part of the game. The visiting team started to cause the Rangers to take some penalties.
Pascal Dupuis (7) made it a one-goal game for the Penguins at the 3:39 mark of the third period. The Rangers defense along with keeper Henrik Lundqvist (24 saves) shut down the powerful Penguins down for two big points.
With this win the Blueshirts are now 7-1-1, which is the best record at MSG since the 92-93 seasons. Meanwhile for Henrik this is his fifth straight victory in the cage for New York.
The Rangers will have to start the month of December on the road, as they will head down to North Carolina for a Thursday night game against the Hurricanes. The game between the Blueshirts and Canes is scheduled to air on the MSG network, with face-off slated for 7:00 p.m.
Charity Note: Prior to the face-off between the Rangers and Penguins, the Blueshirts continued with Day Two of their 6th annual Garden of Dreams coat drive.
Written on November 30, 2011