Rangers perhaps unlucky
While the final standings will ultimately tell the full story, this was always going to be another development year for the rebuilding New York Rangers and, despite losing on Wednesday night, they are showing tangible signs of progress. And, let’s not forget, the Boston Bruins are an absolute juggernaut so this was never going to be easy.
However, since placing troubled defenseman Tony DeAngelo in exile, this Rangers team is seemingly playing with more freedom given that there are no more distractions inside the locker room for this young group, and they actually played a good game of hockey against the Bruins.
They outshot the B’s 35-32 and could have easily won the game were it not for the heroics of Boston goaltender Tuukka Rask, who stopped 33 of the 35 shots he faced, including pulling off this absolutely sublime glove save to rob Mika Zibanejad in what was no doubt the save of the game.
But, despite the loss, which dropped the Blueshirts to 4-5-3 on the year, there were plenty of positives to take from the game including the fact that Zibanejad looks to slowly be getting back to his best following a slow start to the 2020-21 season due to a bout of COVID-19 during the offseason. Zibanejad looked a lot more lively and he could have had at least a hat trick were it not for the brilliance of Rask.
The Rangers also got stellar goaltending from Alexandar Georgiev who stopped 29 of the 32 shots he faced, rebounding from what had been a tough start to the year. Also, the Blueshirts got some depth scoring as Julien Gauthier recorded his first-ever career goal in the National Hockey League, while power forward Kevin Rooney scored his third goal of the year and the fact that they are getting contributions from up and down the lineup can be a source of encouragement for the coaching staff. So, while this was another tough loss, the New York Rangers showed some more maturity and if they play like that again then they could gain revenge on the Boston Bruins when these two teams meet again tonight.