I rushed downstairs before, but just to wrap this thread up…Nylander polished off the hat trick late in the game and the Rangers won. Post game thoughts to follow above.
I was typing when Shanahan scored before, and when I looked up quickly I thought Jed Ortmeyer scored. My first thought: No way Malik AND Ortmeyer scored in the same game???
Alas, it wasn’t true, but the Rangers have added a sixth goal on the strength of Shanahan. I believe his shot went in off Shane Hnidy, one of the many Thrashers instigators who has been humbled by the Blueshirts ‘94 turn.
Bizarre move by the officials. It was almost like they are trying to make up for 2 1/2 games of turning a blind eye by sending everyone to the locker room. G’bye to Avery and Mara, and Kovalchuk, Tkachuk and Belanger.
I know Kovalchuk drew blood on Avery, but I have the sneaking suspicion that scuffle would’ve turned bad for the young Russian. Just a hunch.
The Rangers need to be careful on this power play right here. I imagine Atlanta will look to hit here, dirty or not.
Judging by the way the game has unfolded, I’m pretty sure the Rangers sold their souls and have embodied their 1994 predecessors for a night. So I ask you, fair readers, who is who? I guess Avery would have to play Messier, that’s for sure.
And as you know, Callahan scored the last goal on a deflection. That was some booming shot from the point by Mara, who, it at least should be noted, has been around almost exactly as long as Avery. (Not suggesting he has had the impact of Avery, but the defense has been very good since he joined it. Just a thought.)
I know it’s been a topic of discussion all week, but you have to wonder why Atlanta has been so dirty, like a boxer who can’t beat his opponent so he results to biting his ear or punching him in the you-know-where. Every time they fall behind, one of the Thrashers throws an elbow or a fist. It’s gotten to the point where it looks like a natural reaction.
What a save just now by Lundqvist on Exelby. Lundqvist will be overlooked in this one because of the offensive display, but he has been as sharp as if the game is 0-0.
I think I just got goosebumps.
That had to feel pretty sweet for Ryan Callahan, who just got a partial Standing O from the Garden crowd after scoring the first playoff goal of his career.
Of course, making matters more delectable for Ranger fans was the long feed up ice from cult hero Sean Avery. In other news, Avery just burped on the bench and it sounded like Jimi Hendrix’s version of the Star Spangled Banner.
(OK, maybe not, but I think it’s time you start calling Avery by the name “Midas.” Where did this come from?)
So I just did a quick tour of the Garden to meet with a few of our readers. It was quick, but everyone was understandably in a great mood. How can you not be?
The Thrashers just started the second period strong, but you forget; it’s going to be awfully tough to come back from three down vs. Lundqvist. Plus, they just took a bench minor for too many men on the ice, which is about the worst mistake you can make down three.
The Thrashers are completely dead in the water. Done. Finished.
I mean, the only comparison I can draw is that they just treated Marek Malik like a team defending Shaq at the 3-point line. Only problem: This isn’t basketball. You simply cannot leave someone totally unattended, especially when you can’t get the puck out of your own zone.
Anyway, 3-0 Rangers. What a start…
That is amazing that Avery just got a penalty. I know he fought back but both DeVries and (I believe) Holik made a point to go after him following the whistle. Tough call.
That said, the Rangers take a 2-0 lead on another goal from Nylander, who followed up on the efforts of Jagr and Hossa. The line really has been dominant to finish the season, but even more so since Hossa came back. How many of you would’ve laughed if Sam told you that back in December???
Wow! In the 30 seconds it took me to figure out a shaky internet connection (I’m up in the North Press Box), the Rangers are on the board. You all saw it, but in case you didn’t, more great stickwork from Nylander and a tremendous lead pass from Jagr to set up the goal, Nylander’s second of the playoffs.
I tried to find you the Blueshirts record when they score first in a playoff game but I don’t have it. Umh…media relations staff, you may want to add that for the next round. It sure looks like there’s gonna be one…