Rangers of Old Present in 2-0 Shutout Win Over the Capitals
The formula consisted of getting the goaltending they needed from Henrik Lundqvist, getting timely goal scoring, blocking lots of shots and playing mistake-free hockey. When the Blueshirts did that last season and the season before, they won a lot more often than they lost.
That formula was ever present tonight in the Rangers' 2-0 win over the Washington Capitals. The team got a solid performance from their franchise netminder, who picked-up his third straight shutout over the Capitals dating back to last year's playoffs, got goals when they needed them, and played well on the defensive side of the puck.
This was by far and away the Rangers' best game in the young season. The team got back to their basics and forechecked hard, drove to the net, put pucks on Capitals' goaltender Braden Holtby and kept the Capitals' offensive weapons off the board.
Things got off in the right direction when they did not allow a goal in the first period. Coming into tonight's tilt, the team had been averaging five goals against per game so to come out of a period with a 0 on the scoreboard was a huge plus and confidence builder.
The team's offense got rolling in the second period when they outshot the Capitals 21-6. While Holtby was solid in the period, the Rangers were able to get two pucks by him on goals by defenseman John Moore and and team captain Ryan Callahan.
Both of those goals were set up by Brad Richards, who now has seven points (four goals and three assists) on the season. Richards also had five shots on goal as he continues to not be afraid to shoot the puck this season (27 shots in six games).
The team also got a strong performance out of Lundqvist. There was no doubt that coming into tonight's game, Lundqvist had not been playing like himself but tonight, he kept the game simple, got some help from his teammates and stopped all 22 shots the Caps threw at him.
Lastly, the team's defense played like the Rangers' defense of old. They were all over the ice in breaking up passes and the club blocked a ton of shots (21).
When the Rangers stick to this formula, there is no doubt that they will win their fair share of hockey games. Now, the team just needs to do it again on Saturday night against the New Jersey Devils.