Just when I was getting all over Brandon Dubinsky, the guy comes through and gives the Rangers a much needed boost. It wasn’t even about the goal he scored, his presence on that 3rd line helped the Rangers roll 3 lines all night without a problem, sprinkling in some 4th line action as well. That is the way John Tortorella wants to run a hockey team anyway. It’s the way he won a championship. Big minutes to the top line. Semi-big minutes to the 2nd line. Medium minutes to the 3rd line. Very light minutes to the 4th line. I’m ok with that to be honest. The Rangers are better when their better players play more minutes. Most teams are. Now if you could get me a 4th line that could actually contribute, I wouldn’t have a problem seeing them 8, 9, 10 minutes a night. But as it is, Rupp, Prust, and Fedotenko shouldn’t see more than 5 or 6 which is pretty much what they got tonight. It will be interesting to see what this team does with Chris Kreider next year. You’d have to assume the kid would have a helluva shot of making this club right out of the gate. How will they do their lines then? These things have a way of sorting themselves out though, so let’s not worry about that right now.
Getting back to the game, I felt the Rangers were really in control of this for the most part. Sure, Biron had to make several outstanding saves to keep the game close, but the Rangers had just as many high quality scoring chances, and you know that this war of attrition was going to be won by the team with the bigger guns. Marian Gaborik, take a bow.
OK, I have to run now, Have to be up in 4 hours to start driving to Indiana. Like I said in my last post, I will be out of town till Wednesday, so no post game wraps till then. Hope you all have a happy holiday season, and here’s hoping the Rangers win all 3 of these games! I also will be recording the World Junior Championships for Team USA, as I want to watch JT Miller closely. This kid really has some promise, I could see him being a Ranger within the next 1-2 seasons.