The Rangers snapped their 3 game losing streak with an economical performance against the Coyotes.
Thumbs Up- Artem Anisimov (who scored the game’s first goal) once again looked very comfortable and played a strong game. Michael Del Zotto continues to defy logic and play like a veteran. The rookie point man has showed incredible confidence and patience with the puck while quarterbacking the power play and an improved physical game at even strength. Brian Boyle had another solid performance. Although his goal less streak continues, Christopher Higgins probably had his best all around game as a Ranger last night.
Thumbs Down- Sean Avery and Ryan Callahan might as well call themselves “Los Amigos Invisibles” with the way they have been playing as of late. Neither made much of an impact last night and could be the next ones singled out by Torts if they don’t start making plays soon. Donald Brashear had some sloppy plays and wasn’t much of a factor and Dan Girardi took a bad penalty and was very average.
Three Stars- 3- Vinny Prospal- Prospal continues to be the biggest surprise so far this early season. Paired with Marian Gaborik and the impressive Enver Lisin, Prospal has been a point monster both setting up his linemates and putting the puck in the net himself. His beautiful passing set up Gaborik’s second goal last night and his own sweet stickhandling allowed him to pot one early in the second period. Definitely the best bargain pickup in the NHL this offseason.
2- Henrik Lundqvist- When everything else breaks down, King Henrik is always there to keep the Rangers in the game. Last night after the defense sagged and gave up two quick scores to give Phoenix life, Henrik shut the door and led the Rangers to a much needed win.
1- Marian Gaborik- Gaborik has been the most impressive player (with the only possible exception being Kings forward Anze Kopitar) in the NHL so far this season. His two goals last night once again showcased his natural scoring ability and his ability to raise the games of everyone around him. If Gaborik can stay off the trainer’s table (he was injured last night but reports say it was minor and he is expected to be in the lineup tomorrow) he will put up huge numbers and will make this club very dangerous come playoff time.
The Rangers next contest is tomorrow night vs. #1 overall pick John Tavares and the Islanders at the Nassau Coliseum.