Rangers Look To Bring the Road Home

The Rangers return home tonight to face the Columbus Blue Jackets after completing a sound two-game sweep in the Sunshine State.

Looking to dovetail a complete 2-1 overtime victory in Tampa Bay on Thursday night, the Blueshirts did just that with another overtime win against the Panthers. Kevin Shattenkirk jumped into the play in the extra session, took a nice saucer pass from Rick Nash, scored his second on the night and the Rangers were able to head back north with four much-needed points in the bank.

And everyone breathes a little easier!

The Blue Jackets come to Broadway tied for first with the Devils in the Metro Division with 19 points. In the last meeting between the two teams, Artemi Panarin’s third period goal broke a 1-1 tie and Columbus emerged with a 3-1 win. Sergei Bobrovsky, the reigning Vezina Trophy winner, was brilliant particularly in the second period when the Rangers fired 18 shots at the Blue Jacket netminder and came away with nothing to show for their efforts. Bobrovsky is the backbone of this talented, “heavy” Columbus squad.

[Watch Tonight’s Rangers-Blue Jackets Game on MSG and Download Free on MSG GO]

The Rangers will honor Nash in a pregame ceremony to acknowledge him reaching the 1,000-game plateau. Taken first overall in the 2002 amateur draft by the Blue Jackets, and after 674 games with Columbus, Rick is now in his sixth season with the Blueshirts.

I am not sure he will ever get the recognition he deserves as being an important Ranger. I suppose fairly or unfairly, he will always be measured against his salary. But rest assured those who have managed, coached or broadcasted him have very much appreciated what he has brought to this franchise. He has been a consummate pro who has had a big impact on this generation of young Rangers.


1. Bring the Road Home

The bottom line in the past two games played on the road is four points. A sound, structured game beginning in the defensive zone worked to a tee. The entertainment value is four points. Bring the road, home.

2. Sticks in Position

It sure seems like a very small tactic, but when sticks are in the right position to make a good play, the bodies are in the right position to make a good play. In all three zones. Make a play, defend a play. Better chance of success if a stick is in the right position.

3. Bobrovsky

There may not be a goaltender in the league at this moment that is playing in better than Sergei Bobrovsky. The Blueshirts need to make him work and be patient if he is up to his recent heroics. Quantity and quality will be needed in the arsenal this evening.

[Watch Tonight’s Rangers-Blue Jackets Game on MSG and Download Free on MSG GO]