After starting a six game home stand with two straight loses (one in the shootout) the Rangers were able to turn things around by taking the next four giving them a 7-3-3 record on the season. Here’s some quick thoughts on the why they’ve been able to turn it around…
- By far the biggest reason for the resurgence was John Tortorella’s decision to break-up Marian Gaborik and Brad Richards. Putting them on separate lines has balanced the entire line-up.
- Speaking of Gaborik he is playing on another planet right now. He’s a stride faster than anyone else on the ice.
- The “Avery Effect” officially back as the Rangers are also 4-0-0 since his recall. His 5 minutes a night are obviously the difference. lol
- Erik Christensen has played four solid games in a row for the first time in his career.
- The 5-11 Ryan Callahan challenging and dropping the 6-4 Mike Blunden of the Canadiens after the Habs forward ran over Brandon Dubinsky proves he was the right man for the captaincy. No way Chris Drury ever does that.
- Rookie Andre Deveaux’s toughness and surprising poise with the puck is making it easy for Rangers fans to forget Mike Rupp who will be missing an extended period with a knee injury that will require arthroscopic surgery.
- Richards has proved his worth on the ice, but now we’re hearing he’s also earning his money off it as his mentoring of Derek Stepan and Michael Del Zotto has led to the youngsters’ expedited development.
- The winning streak has been able to mask the fact that Brandon Dubinsky is still goalless this season.
- I would put the one-two punch of Henrik Lundqvist and Marty Biron up against any other goaltending tandem in the NHL.
- Torts complained about not being able to get Wojtek Wolski out of the hot tub this early season, well he might want to get a back-up generator as the Rangers winger has a sports hernia that requires surgery and will keep him off the ice for four weeks.
- Not sure Dan Girardi is going to make it to the end of the year playing 30 minutes a night.
- Did the Canadiens really trade the Rangers Ryan McDonagh for Scott Gomez? Could end up being the worst trade in NHL history.
- Somehow a defensive corps that has included Jeff Woywitka, Steve Eminger, Brandon Bell and rookie Tim Erixon has not missed a beat in the absence of Marc Staal.
- Derek Stepan and Artem Anisimov are taking their games to the next level.
- The power play continues to be this team’s Achilles heel as they’re currently 25th in the league.
Two more winnable games against the Senators and Hurricanes this week could have the Rangers knocking on the door for first place in the Atlantic Division by week’s end.