The dominant theme of postmortems to come out of the Rangers’ first-round exit last weekend is that the organization has reached the end of an era. I’m inclined to agree, and there’s a lot of (deserved) doom and gloom regarding the Rangers’ outlook. That said, I thought I’d put together a top ten list of the most memorable goals from this wildly successful era for nostalgic purposes.
10. Carcillo Opens the Scoring off Zuccarello’s Pass, G7 vs. PHI 2014
I remember experiencing high levels of anxiety prior to this game, as the Rangers let an inferior Flyers team push them to Game 7 after a rout in Philadelphia in Game 6. Scoring first was a huge sigh of relief, made sweeter by the ridiculous pass and unlikely scorer.
The wounds from Friday night’s loss are still fresh, but it’s time to shift in to offseason mode. While they fell short of their ultimate goal, the Rangers accomplished a great deal in the 14/15 season, highlighted by a Presidents’ Trophy and 11 playoff wins. Here are ten positive developments from the year, which are in no particular order.
The Rangers produced their usual playoff output of two goals in Game 2, but at the other end they gave up a bunch of Tampa Bay goals, including three from Tyler Johnson, en route to a disappointing 6-2 defeat.
Special teams ruled the night; six of the game’s eight goals came at less than full strength, and one of the even strength goals came just seconds after an expired penalty.
Power play goals from Chris Kreider and Derek Stepan kept the Rangers within striking distance into the third, but Tampa’s high-end offensive weapons shone through on numerous good looks to pull away.
The Rangers were 1:41 away from bowing out of the playoffs by being shutout for the second time in three games. But with Henrik Lundqvist on the way to the bench, Chris Kreider finally found a way to beat Braden Holtby on the team’s 36th shot on goal of the game. That set the stage for overtime, where Ryan McDonagh blasted the game-winner for a 2-1 win and a return trip to Washington for Game 6.
The Severstal Cherepovets’ team website announced today that Pavel Buchnevich has decided to stay in the KHL for the 2015/16 season. Buchnevich, who just turned 20 years old last month, is coming off an impressive campaign in which he registered 13 goals and 17 assists in 48 games. His 30 points were the third-most all-time by a junior-aged player in the KHL.
The Rangers were 1.3 seconds away from forcing an overtime after tying Game 1 late, but Joel Ward cashed in on a slick feed from behind the net by Alex Ovechkin, tucking it under Henrik Lundqvist’s left pad.