This nine-game home stand could have been an opportunity for the New York Rangers to really turn their season around and dig themselves out of an early season hole. All they've done with it is continued to dig deeper.
A 5-3 loss to the New York Islanders on Friday dropped them to 1-4-2 on the home stand, and it was a particularly ugly game. They allowed a pair of shorthanded goals while Henrik Lundqvist allowed at least three goals for the seventh straight game.
The only thing keeping New York from falling out of the playoff race is the overall mediocrity of the Metropolitan Division.
Elsewhere, the Vancouver Canucks outlasted the Chicago Blackhawks in an eight-round shootout to pick up a 3-2 win on the road. The Canucks overcame a 2-0 deficit and forced overtime thanks to this beautiful goal by Daniel Sedin midway through the third period.
Ryan Kesler ended up scoring the game-winning goal in the shootout.
All the NHL Scores
Islanders 5, Rangers 3
Canucks 3, Blackhawks 2
Jets 5, Panthers 2
On Friday we asked you five burning questions about the days games. These are your cool, soothing answers.
1.Will Alex Ovechkin reach 400 goals?
He did. It wasn't your typical Ovechkin highlight reel play, but it got the job done. Ovechkin's empty-net goal in the closing minute helped secure the Capitals' 4-2 win in Carolina, and made Ovechkin the NHL's 89th 400-goal scorer, and the sixth-fastest player to reach the milestone.
2. Who will win the battle of desperate New York hockey clubs?
The Islanders, thanks to a pair of goals from Michael Grabner and a questionable penalty shot goal from Cal Clutterbuck. Just about the only positive for the Rangers was Derek Dorsett introducing a new strategy for coaches to use: funny faces.
3. Can Vancouver rebound in Chicago?
The Canucks did rebound, snapping what had been a two-game losing streak, with a 3-2 shootout win. After a slow start the Canucks bounced back and were the better team over the final 40 minutes, picking up the shootout win thanks to Ryan Kesler's goal in the seventh round and a solid effort from backup goaltender Eddie Lack.
4. How much better will Winnipeg be with Zach Bogosian?
How much of it was due to the return of Bogosian is certainly up for debate, but the Jets were definitely better on Friday night when they picked up a 5-2 win over the Florida Panthers. Bogosian played more than 17 minutes and added an assist in the win, helping the Jets end a six-game home losing streak. The game also snapped what had been a five-game winning streak for the Panthers.
5.Will the Ducks offense or Devils defense prevail?
It was the Ducks thanks to Kyle Palmieri's overtime goal. Teemu Selanne was one of the big stars for Anaheim in this game with a pair of assists, while Cam Fowler and Mathieu Perreault also added goals.
The one play or moment from Friday that is going to be making headlines over the next couple of days.
Seriously, what's wrong with the Rangers, and specifically Henrik Lundqvist? This may not be a great team, but it's too talented to be playing this poorly, especially on home ice. Is is still the adjustment period for a new coach and a new system? Does Alain Vigneault not have the type of personnel needed to make his system work? Whatever the case, something just isn't working in New York right now.
Also of pretty big importance on Friday: The revelation that Phoenix Coyotes captain is being treated for Rocky Mountain spotted fever symptoms.
Stat of the Night
Henrik and Daniel Sedin were both used in the shootout for Vancouver on Friday, and neither one scored. For their careers they are a combined 3-for-25 in the shootout, with Daniel scoring all three goals. For two players as talented as they are, that seems almost impossible to believe.
Post to Post
- The newest power rankings have the Chicago Blackhawks at the top.
- The rink of dreams in Michigan is pretty amazing.
- The New York Rangers unveiled their new Stadium Series jersey on Friday afternoon.
- The Edmonton reaction to the Linus Omark trade.