The Dustin Tokarski era started in Montreal with a loss, but it was mainly due to Henrik Lundqvist and his fantastic play at the other end of the ice.
3 things to know
New York had the better goalie
Dustin Tokarski did not play poorly for the Montreal Canadiens on Monday night in his first start filling in for the injured Carey Price. The box score may have said that he gave up three goals, but there's really only one that you can look at and say that he probably should have had it. One came on a fluky bounce after the puck hit Josh Gorges in the butt, and the third goal, a Martin St. Louis power play goal, came through a perfect screen that completely blinded Tokarski from seeing the shot. All things considered, it was a promising start (and his mask is awesome). But the guy at the other end of the rink. Wow. Henrik Lundqvist was a wall in net for the New York Rangers and turned aside 40 of the 41 shots he faced, including several great chances in the first 10 minutes when Montreal came out flying and threw everything it possibly could at him.
Rick Nash can Score again
If the New York Rangers had lost Game 7 of their second round series against the Pittsburgh Penguins, Rick Nash would have been forever remembered for the great choke job of the 2014 playoffs. Now he has a chance to be remembered for his big goals in even bigger games, and on Monday night he scored his second goal in as many games when he beat Tokarski with beautiful one-timer to give the Rangers a 2-1 lead. It goes into the books as the game-winner. Nash has played really well at times this postseason, especially on the defensive end, but simply could not buy a goal. Now maybe they will start to come in bunches for him again.
You can't score if you don't shoot
Thomas Vanek is a two-time 40-goal scorer and a player that is probably going to get a decent chunk of change from a team this summer in free agency. If Game 2 was the first time you ever saw him play, you would have no idea how or why. He only played 11 minutes, and he didn't make the best use of it. He took a penalty, failed to record a shot on goal and for reasons that remain unknown passed the puck when he had a partial breakaway in a one-goal game. Just 30 seconds later Alex Galchenyuk took a penalty and the Rangers scored on the power play to put the game away. Not exactly a great sequence.
Waitin' til Wednesday