Browsing Posts tagged Zach Parise

Just win. That was the Rangers only objective heading into Game 6. It didn’t matter how they got it done…they needed a win or their season would be finished. More importantly, the Rangers franchise was 5-0 in Game 7s at Madison Square Graden, leading to some added motivation. However, it was not meant to be.

After battling back from 2-0 deficit, the Rangers rallied to tie the game, but fell in overtime. Adam Henrique netted the game winner for the Devils, who will play Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Finals Wednesday night against the red hot LA Kings.

For the Rangers, it has been apparent that they seriously lack depth on their third and fourth lines. Their two top lines feature many great players, but their lack of the depth stoppped a pivotal Game 7. Ryan Callahan netted the first two Blue Shirt goals, but the rest of the Rangers couldn’t get the puck behind Marty Brodeur.

As the Rangers enter the off-season, they’ll hang their hats on their deep playoff run, $15 million in cap room, and youth on their roster. For the Devils, winning the Cup could mark the end of Brodeur’s tenure as Devils goalie and allow Zach Parise to chase a big contract in free agency. However, the LA Kings, led by goalie Jon Quick, have been sensational.

Overall, it was a nice season and Ranger fans have to be encouraged about the future of their team.

As they entered the post-season, the Devils had only two goals in mind–winning the Stanley Cup and building a case to keep star winger, Zach Parise.

Parise, 27, will enter the open market as an unrestricted free agent this off-season. In 502 career games with the Devils, Parise has tallied 410 points including 194 goals. During Monday’s Game 4, Parise made his presence felt, netting two goals and adding another assist. These three points were Parise’s first points of this Eastern Conference Finals. His Eastern Conference Finals opponent, the NY Rangers, have never been shy about chasing and signing free agents. In recent memory, the Rangers have inked forwards, Brad Richards and Marion Gaborik. With some cap flexibility heading into next season, will the Rangers sign the talented left wing?

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For the second time this post-season, the Rangers rose to the occasion and won a decisive Game 7. Brad Richards wasted little time in the first period, netting the game’s first goal at the 1:14 mark. For the next forty minutes, the two teams failed to register a goal before Michael Del Zotto gave the Blue Shirts a 2-0 lead. The Caps wasted little time, scoring their own goal two minutes later. However, the Ranger defense and Henrik Lundqvist really locked down on the Caps, as they held onto a 2-1 Game 7 victory.

To put it in perspective, the Capitals only managed four shots in the third period. Compared to Ottawa’s 15 shots in their last Game 7, the Rangers third period defense was stellar and they are moving on to face the NJ Devils in the NJ Transit Series.

As a regular commuter on the NJ Transit train lines, I’m not happy at all about this pairing. These two teams are separated by a mere 13 minute train ride from MSG to The Rock in Newark. Fans from both sides will be giving me a headache all week long. However, I expect well-played hockey, so I’ll deal with it.

On the surface, both teams have yet to face a top goaltender this post-season. You could make the argument that Capitals goalie, Brandon Holtby has had his coming out party, but realistically, neither team has faced a proven, veteran goal tender…until now. Marty Brodeur and Henrik Lundqvist are still two of league’s very best. This series will likely come down to goal tending and defensive play. Luckily for the Rangers, their back line has been pretty good and will likely slow down the attack of Zach Parise and Ilya Kovalchuk. Remember, there is a lot of bad blood between these teams so expect a lot of rough play and fights. 

As for the Western Conference, I really don’t know too much about the skill position players. However, I do know that Kings’ goalie, Jon Quick, and Coyote goalie, Mike Smith have been dominant this post-season. As the #8 seed in the West, the Kings have won 8 of 9 post-season games rather easily against the conference’s top two teams. ESPN’s Barry Melrose is picking the Kings in six and Rangers in six, so that’s good enough for me. 

As a whole, the NHL would like a Rangers-Kings Stanley Cup Final. The two largest markets in the country squaring off for the Cup. The Rangers are starved for the Cup while the Kings have never won it. The Kings made it in 1992-93 when they had The Great One, but fell to the Canadiens. 

Playoff hockey will be really exciting in the NY Metro area for the next two, three weeks. Buckle up, it’ll be a bumpy ride. 

Debora Robinson/NHL/Getty Images

With only two games remaining on the Islanders schedule this season I want to take this opportunity to look at a possible move that could shake things up in Islander country.  As of now the Islanders roster is comprised of homegrown talent such as John Tavares, Andrew MacDonald, and Frans Nielsen as well as players getting a second chance like Matt Moulson, Michael Grabner, PA Parenteau, and Al Montoya.

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