Game 3: Capitals at Rangers today

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It’s a 3 p.m. NBC game, Edzos.

I’m headed to MSG for the whole nine yards. Maybe some of those casual fans can put down their iPhones, stop ordering their chicken fingers and trying to catch flying T-shirts, and make  a little noise today? Or not.

Until then, here are the pre-game notes from the Rangers:

NEW YORK RANGERS vs. WASHINGTON CAPITALS
2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs – Eastern Conference Quarterfinal, Game Three
Sunday, Apr. 17, 3:00 p.m.
Madison Square Garden • New York, NY
Rangers (Regular Season): 44-33-5 (93 pts)
Capitals (Regular Season): 48-23-11 (107 pts)

TODAY’S GAME:
The Rangers will face-off against the Washington Capitals at Madison Square Garden (3:00 p.m.), in Game Three of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinal match-up. The Blueshirts were defeated by the Capitals, 2-0, in Game Two on Friday at Verizon Center, and now trail 2-0 in the series. New York has begun a best-of-seven series with an overtime loss in Game One and a regulation loss in Game Two only once before, in the first round of the 1996 playoffs against the Montreal Canadiens (New York won the series, 4-2). The Rangers enter the contest with a 197-214-8 record all-time in 419 playoff contests, including a 109-82-2 mark at home.  New York has posted a 32-42 record all-time in Game Threes of playoff series.

New York entered the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs having posted a record of 44-33-5 (93 pts) overall with a 24-16-1 mark on the road in the regular season. The Blueshirts are one of seven Eastern Conference teams to have registered at least five seasons of 40+ wins since 2005-06, and one of five Eastern Conference teams to advance to the playoffs in five of the six seasons (no team has advanced to the playoffs in all six seasons).  Compared to last season, the Rangers registered six more wins and six more points (38-33-11, 87 points in 2009-10), having tallied 11 more goals (233 this season, 222 last season) while allowing 20 fewer goals against (198 this season, 218 last season).  New York also posted a six-goal improvement while shorthanded compared to 2009-10 (11 this season, five last season). The Rangers’ 44 wins tied for sixth most in team history, and their 24 road wins tied the franchise record (1993-94).
BROADCAST INFORMATION:
*       TV: NBC
3:00 p.m. – Rangers vs. Capitals
Broadcasters: Mike Emrick (Play-By-Play), Eddie Olczyk (Analyst), Darren Pang, Mike Milbury, and Liam McHugh (In-Game Reporters)
*       Radio: 1050 ESPN Radio and newyorkrangers.com
2:30 p.m. – Rangers Pre-Game Show
3:00 p.m. – Rangers vs. Capitals
Broadcasters: Kenny Albert (Play-By-Play), Dave Maloney (Analyst)

ALL-TIME RANGERS PLAYOFF RECORDS:
*       Overall: 197-214-8
*       Home: 109-82-2
*       Away: 88-132-6
*       Goals for: 1,168
*       Goals against: 1,204

ALL-TIME PLAYOFF RECORDS – RANGERS vs. CAPITALS
The Rangers and Capitals are meeting in the playoffs for the sixth time overall and the second time in three years. Their last postseason encounter was an Eastern Conference Quarterfinal series in 2009, won by Washington 4-3. Overall, the Blueshirts have a 2-3 playoff series record vs. the Capitals, posting a 14-17 mark in 31 postseason contests.

RANGERS vs. CAPITALS:
*       All-Time (Regular Season): 83-84-18-5 overall (46-37-9-2 at home; 37-47-9-3 on the road)
*       2010-11: The Rangers posted a 3-1-0 record vs. the Capitals in their regular season series, including a 2-0-0 mark at Verizon Center. New York out-scored Washington, 18-6, led by Brian Boyle’s seven points (three goals, four assists). The Rangers held the Capitals to one goal or less three times, including two shutouts by Henrik Lundqvist.
*       Over the last two seasons, the Blueshirts have tallied 10 power play goals in 30 opportunities (33.3%) in their last eight regular season games vs. Washington, including six goals in 17 power play attempts (35.3%) in four games in 2009-10.
*       Henrik Lundqvist has posted a 3-6 record with a 2.68 GAA and one shutout in nine career playoff contests vs. Washington
*       Vinny Prospal leads the Rangers with six goals, eight assists and 14 points in 16 career playoff contests vs. Washington
*       New York lists one former Capital on their roster: Steve Eminger (2002-03 – 2007-08)
*       Washington lists two former Rangers on their roster: Mike Knuble (1998-99 – 1999-00); Tom Poti (2001-02 – 2005-06)

SPECIAL TEAMS
The Blueshirts posted a plus-13 rating on special teams (PPG+SHG minus PPGA+SHGA) this season, which tied for second in the league.

*       Power Play: New York did not tally a goal in two power play opportunities (4:00) in Game Two on Friday at Washington, and are now 0-4 (0.0%) in two playoff contests. The Rangers ranked 18th overall (49-290, 16.9%) and 21st on the road (21-139, 15.1%) in the regular season, and registered a 19.4% (14-72) success rate in their final 21 games. The Blueshirts were 5-15 (12:41) in five-on-three situations (last – 4/3 at PHI), and 0-7 (8:42) when four-on-three (last – 4/3 at PHI).
*       Penalty Killing: The Blueshirts surrendered one goal to the Capitals in three shorthanded situations (5:09) in Game Two on Friday at Washington, and are now 4-5 (80.0%) in two playoff contests. New York tied for ninth overall (215-257, 83.7%) and ranked sixth on the road (117-139, 84.2%) in the regular season, and surrendered just two goals in 20 attempts (90.0%) on the penalty kill in their final 11 games. The Rangers were 7-10 (7:21) in three-on-five situations (last – 2/27 vs. TBL), and 4-6 (2:41) when three-on-four (last – 11/15 at PIT).
*       Four-on-Four: The Rangers and Capitals did not skate in a four-on-four situation in Game Two on Friday at Washington. During the regular season, New York was plus-three (seven goals for, four goals against) in 67, four-on-four situations (134:41), and even in one, three-on-three situation (2:00) this season (2/17 vs. LAK).

OVERTIME
The Rangers and Capitals Game One match-up was the sixth time the two teams required overtime to decide a playoff contest, with New York posting a record of 2-4 in those contests. Wednesday’s game (78:24) was the longest between the two teams, out-lasting the previous longest by 11:36 (Apr. 27, 1990 – 66:48).

PLAYOFF DEBUT
Seven Rangers made their playoff debut in Game One at Washington on Wednesday – Brian Boyle, Matt Gilroy, Brandon Prust, Ryan McDonagh, Michael Sauer, Derek Stepan, and Mats Zuccarello. Gilroy (goal) and Prust (assist) also registered their first career postseason point in the contest.

CLOSING TIME

The Blueshirts were the only team in the NHL who were undefeated when leading after two periods this season, posting a record of 29-0-0 in those contests. The Rangers tied for third in the league with a plus-22 goal differential in the third period (85 goals for, 63 goals against). New York also tied for second in the NHL with eight wins and 20 points in games in which it trailed entering the final frame.

RAISING THEIR GAME

The Rangers were undefeated in their last six games of the regular season vs. the top four teams in the Eastern Conference standings, including a 6-0 win at Washington on Feb. 25. New York out-scored their opponents, 27-7, in those contests, having tallied five or more goals in four of the six games while posting three shutouts.

CAPTAIN CLUTCH

Rangers Captain Chris Drury is tied for fourth in the NHL all-time with four playoff overtime goals, and ranks fourth among active NHL players and leads the team with 47 goals in 132 career postseason contests. Drury has participated in the playoffs eight times, having advanced to at least the Conference Finals in five of those eight seasons.

THE PUCK STOPS HERE
Henrik Lundqvist was named the NHL’s Third Star of the Week for the period ending Mar. 27 after posting a 2-0-1 record, 0.32 GAA, .987 Sv% and two shutouts in three games. On Mar. 26, Lundqvist established a new career-high with his league leading, 11th shutout of the season, while appearing in his 400th career game. His 11 shutouts tied for second in team history for most shutouts in a season, and are the most by a Ranger since John Ross Roach posted 13 shutouts in 1928-29. He is now one of two active goaltenders with at least two seasons of 10+ shutouts (M. Brodeur – 4). Lundqvist also posted his 30th win of the season on Mar. 18 vs. Montreal to extend his NHL record by recording 30 or more wins in six consecutive seasons to begin his career, and extend his franchise record by posting his sixth straight 30-win season. Lundqvist established a new career-high by appearing in his 22nd consecutive contest (dating back to Feb. 11) on Mar. 31 at Long Island. Lundqvist has appeared in 28 straight games entering today’s contest, and has started each of the Rangers last 31 playoff games.

TURNING LEMONS INTO LEMONADE
The Rangers tied for fourth in the league with 11 shorthanded goals this season, the most for New York since they notched 11 in 2006-07 and tied for 12th most in franchise history. Brandon Prust led the team and tied for second and third in the league, respectively, with a career-high, seven shorthanded points and five shorthanded goals. His five shorthanded goals are the most by a Ranger since Theo Fleury tallied seven shorthanded goals in 2000-01. Brian Boyle led the Rangers and tied for second in the NHL with a career-best, three shorthanded assists.

AMONG THE LEAGUE LEADERS
The Rangers completed the regular season leading the league in hits (2,333), ranked fourth in blocked shots (1,301), tied for first in shutouts (11), second in number of players with at least one GWG (19), third in shootout wins (nine), fourth in road wins (24), fifth in goals against (198), and fifth with a plus-35 goal differential.

INJURIES:
*       Derek Boogaard (shoulder, 12/9) – 54
*       Alex Frolov (knee, 1/8) – 41
*       Martin Biron (collarbone, 2/28) – 20
*       Ryan Callahan (ankle, 4/4) – 4

Total Man-Games Lost (Regular Season, Playoffs): 327
Total Man-Games Lost (Playoffs): 8

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61 Comments

  1. bull dog line on

    I waited for you as long as I could ilb.
    Rangers big today. time to turn the series around.

  2. I find it difficult to believe that a team that handled the Capos so professionally during the season, could become so inept during this playoffs. They really do look like boys playing against men. I don’t understand this transformation. And that goal tender is not sensational…he’s good…but he hasn’t been really tested. The few shots that Rangers could muster against him were, well, amateurish to say the least. And their ‘passing game” is almost laughable. And one player who stands out with a very solid smash and dash, is the oft overlooked Gilroy. He was very physical in defending his turf, and he carried the puck with an elan that has not really been seen here in some time. Wonder why Tortorella doesn’t notice this. Keep in mind also that the scores could easily have been worse…have you noted how many shots that Capos rang off the posts?

  3. Johnny LaRue on

    I can hear the conversations in the locker room now, fran…
    “What are we doing, what kind of lives are these? We’re like children, we’re not men.”
    “No we’re not men”.

  4. Blueshirt in Paris on

    Uh, if you can’t see the difference between the Caps now and the ones we beat early on there is not much more to say.

    And if you just called Gilroy ‘very physical’ I really have to question what games you have been watching. Poor kids gets thrown around like a rag doll. Unless you define ‘physical’ as flailing around, trying to stay on his feet while being thrown around, i guess then I can understand. I guess he is more ‘physical’ than EC.

  5. And This One Will Last A Lifetime on

    Carp:
    I will try to stroll over and say hi to you today

    Fran:
    I love reading your posts. Sometimes I wish I wrote what you alreadfy wrote.

    RIR:
    Go away

    Bulldog:
    If you’re a fan, just be fanatic for the team. Don’t be a player hater and don’t coach from the cheap seats

    LGR today baby. Going with one of my sons today. I don’t want to be a jinx, but we have an overwhelmingly great won loss record when we go to a game!

  6. onecupin71yearsand counting on

    I dislike afternoon games on national TV.
    The rangers seem to do poorly in these games.

  7. I’m still amused that the Rangers list The Almighty Booger’s injury as “shoulder”.

    Unless that’s really where the guy’s brain is now located, having been displaced by all the punching.

  8. I can’t believe Boogaard is even being mentioned today.

    I am gonna watch today if I can, but I see a team that is overmatched in all aspects of play. Including goaltending.

    I see a NYR team that is getting an education for the future.

  9. One win and the pollyanas will be back. Show us what you’re made of guys! I will be eating peeps and pinning tails on pinatas when the rangers bring it today

  10. And This One Will Last A Lifetime on

    Hey onecupin…
    I think the NYR had a winning record this year in afternoon games, but I wouldn’t know how to get that info.
    But I was at the last game of the year which was a home matinee game and we won, and played well.

    Eric… we will also be bringing the noise, let’s hope the boyz give us chances to really get it going (but we’re not leavin for 4 hours)

    Come on Blue, lets get this going the right way !

  11. Rhode Island Ranger on

    And This One:

    “RIR:
    Go away”

    I’ve always admired and learned something about hockey from your comments. It hurts that you don’t enjoy or respect mine as well.

    Oh, unrequited love…

    LGR.

  12. Mister Delaware on

    Rangers 4-1. Washington scores in the first 5 minutes. Boyle, Dubinsky, Avery then Gaborik scores the 4th just so people have something to whine about.

  13. LGR! Not a fan of the afternoon games myself but will have to sacrifice the household chores to watch it.

    The sacrifices I make…lol

    L G R !!!

  14. Stranger Nation on

    Torts shuffling lines – need to match boyle with ovetdrunk’s line. Please realize trick to creating room on offense is east west not north south.

    Feds – Artie – dubi
    Vinny – EZ – gabby
    Prust – boyle – aves
    Wolski – step – gilly

    Staal/sauer
    McD/girardi
    Em/ macabre

  15. And This One Will Last A Lifetime on

    RIR…sorry, guess I misunderstood some of your comments

    As long as we are all rowing in unison, it’s al good

    We need a mo-shifter today

  16. Wow. We’re having a regular Heave Ho! moment here, aren’t we.

    Johnny! Are you saying you and me couldn’t build a log cabin?

    Good morning, Sally!

  17. tho I dsagree with the men-vs.-boys idea. I don’t think this series has been lopsided at all. Have the Caps been the better team? Yes, absolutely, and we knew they were coming in. Have they manhandled the Rangers? I haven’t seen that at all.

  18. Today should be fun!! Good times! I’ll be there!

    Expecting a big game from Gaby today…if he comes out like he did in the first period of the last game, it will be a very good day…

    Maybe Artie and Stepan will wake up today and create a few scoring chances?

    EC has world class talent that he selectively uses. His wrist shot is exceptional. However, he may be the biggest basket case on the team. He has mental issues. That said, you’re probably not going to win a 7 game series against Ovechtrick & Co. with him as your first line center…

    I am looking forward to seeing what the lines are today…

    I do wonder if MZA is back in today? Torts comments make me think he is contemplating putting him back in…

  19. Even if the Rangers had clearly been the better of the two teams thus far they could have still been down 0-2 going back to MSG. That’s just the way the playoffs work. They need to play their game and put one in even if it isn’t the prettiest of goals and go from there. Some say game 3 is one of the most crucial games in a series. I just hope they play like it. They take this one and they have a chance to wipe the slate clean this week.

  20. That’s right Carp – you tell ‘em. Put those phones down and go crrrrrrazy! Gotta cheer these boys on. Maybe make them feel like we care about them?

    Anybody going to ol’ Warren 77 for this game? I will be there. Making noise. If you spend $100 Sean Avery scores a goal for you!

  21. I agree that this series has not been lopsided. The boys have looked a lot better than I expected and I think have had a lot of good chances. They bury some of those and this is a very different story!

    Are We Not Men? Are we making Devo references now?

  22. Put Hobbit Wizard in and get Christensen out. Then we don’t have to watch Christensen on the PP. Give Avery Christensen’s time on the PP so we can actually have some forechecking power.

  23. Sounds like fun but I’ll be at the game Manny, maybe after…I’ll be on the blog all day and I’ll let you know

  24. Can’t wait for this pansy, Amtrak-league of a squad (led by the ever-fearful, non-scoring Gaborik) to come into MSG and stink up the joint.

  25. And, of course, I disagree with the notion that the Caps have manhandled the Rangers. Each game has been close, with the surges and bounces going the Caps way. Lundqvist has been very sharp. The Rangers will break out and score today. This is playoff time. Things can change quickly with a W today…

  26. Good morning all! Manny, I’m not going to make warren after all today :( perhaps next Sunday!!!

    see, that’s thinking positive! LGR!!!!

  27. Adorer of Blogmama on

    Repost from yesterday:

    I hope Avery scores 2 goals tomorrow and then, after the game, whisks our extraordinary Mama off her feet, thus scoring the hat trick. :)

    Mama > Hilary Rhoda, Mama > Miranda Kerr, Mama > Scarlett Johannson, Mama > Jessica Alba, Mama > Jessica Biel, Mama > Grace Kelly, Mama > Elisha Cuthbert

  28. JimboWoodside

    In USA nationality is attached to where you are born (i.e. US national) regardless of your religion. In USA everyone speaks English because it is one country made up of states. Similarly, USSR was formerly a [Soviet] Union of 15 countries which was unified by speaking one language — Russian and using Russian currency (rubles) although there were many different nationalities, languages and religions within the [Soviet] Union.

    In USSR, the nationality was attached to your culture — if you are Ukrainian, you would speak Ukrainian [within your family], go to the Ukrainian Orthodox church or Catholic (depending on if you are Western or Eastern Ukrainian) , follow Ukrainian traditions and holidays. Same applies to being an Uzbek, for example. You would speak Uzbek language at home and follow Muslim holidays.

    If you are Jewish, born anywhere in the former USSR, you are Jewish and that is your nationality — that is what the passport would say. Jewish people have their own language, tradition and holidays — that is why Judaism is not just a religion, but a nationality in itself. So even if I was born in Uzbekistan or Russia or Ukraine (where I was actually born), and I speak Russian, I am still Jewish and not Ukrainian or Russian.

    So *OBVIOUSLY* Stuart (from previous thread) there are Jewish people in many parts of the world, but I am still not Ukrainian. Here are some quick facts for you: Israel was created in 1948 and Berlin Wall fell in 1989. Jews have been going to Israel waaaay before the Berlin Wall fell.

    Didn’t mean to steal the Rangers’ thunder away from the glorious victory that awaits, but I wanted to answer Jimbo’s question. Thank you for listening. :)

  29. DudE! NYR ENJOY THE GAME. I’ll be at game 6. So I know the boys will get there. I’ll look for you on tv.

  30. And This One Will Last A Lifetime on

    Carp/Johnny:

    Will you help me move and give me a ride to the airport?

  31. cw – “but I see a team that is overmatched in all aspects of play. Including goaltending. ”

    I agree that they are over matched in talent especially on the first two lines, but goaltending? Do you really think that if the teams switched goalies that the Rangers would have the advantage in that area?

    Hank is the only reason that I think the Rangers can pull out a game or two. Let’s hope this team can score more than a goal or two today.

    LET’S GO RANGERS!! (crosses fingers, knocks on wood, kisses horseshoe, gets out rabbit’s foot….)

  32. wicky(grating PIBG)© (The game’s not over until somebody cries!!) on

    morning ILB and all!!

    morg
    congrats to the mrs on her upcoming graduation.

    Due to the first couple of losses being my fault, I an wearing no rangers gear and will NOT post during the game!

    LGR!!!

  33. blueshirt

    I’m referring to the manner in which he defended his goal area, and he was not hesitant at laying on anyone where it became a lay on situation. I know what I saw…if you disagree….so be it.

  34. wicky(grating PIBG)© (The game’s not over until somebody cries!!) on

    what does everyone think of brent burns from the wild??

    Is Brooks Laich a ranger yet???

  35. I( certainly would like to see some more of the mid season Rangers out there, but these past couple of games have not been them.

    And the main reason why the Rangers attack mode has not been very productive ( and when you cannot develop significant shots on the other team’s goal then you have a problem in performance),
    and it has been precisely this situation…they simply did not get enough shots on goal against this goal tender. And ever more of a problem has been that they have not been in proper position to get shots on him. The difference in team speed has been electric…
    Rangers actually were unable to keep pace with them and it was down to purely being out skated for much of the games.

    This didn’t happen earlier in the season…the tables were somehow turned. These players on Caps are the same..but they are playing much more robustly, and much more effectively. I agree that if it hadn’t been for Lundqvist the situation would have been far worse.

    You know this Caps team has always stood a bit in awe of LQ, and it reached all the way up to the coach himself. But they are not giving up and they’re beginning to believe that they can beat him. Not a good dynamic to allow by the rest of the Ranger team.

  36. I’m headed to MSG for the whole nine yards. Maybe some of those casual fans can put down their iPhones, stop ordering their chicken fingers and trying to catch flying T-shirts, and make a little noise today.
    ____________________
    Roland

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