May 14, 2012, 11:14 PM EDT
Particularly through the first two periods of Game 1, the New York Rangers learned what Jaromir Jagr marveled at in the semifinals: the New Jersey Devils are faster and tougher than maybe they realized. A big part of that challenge – especially for a Rangers team coming right back from a grinding seven-game series – was dealing with the Devils’ aggressive forecheck.
New York eventually did win Game 1 3-0, but that forecheck could be a factor as the series goes along (much like the Devils must figure out to deal with the Rangers’ shot-blocking). Rangers defensive wunderkind Ryan McDonagh told Patrick Kearns how they might deal with the forecheck.
“They come hard,” McDonagh said. “We need to just look for open guys or even open ice.”
Dan Girardi might be the best singular example of New York’s ups-and-downs in Game 1. He scored the game-winning goal early in the third period and won the Broadway Hat but also kicked himself for a turnover or two that could have turned the contest.
To some, that might be a sign of false modesty more than anything else, yet if the Devils keep forcing mistakes with that forecheck, this could end up being an arduous series for the Rangers.
- Flyers’ Mason broke his right pinky finger playing ball hockey 11
- Lindros, LeClair and Desjardins to be inducted into the Flyers Hall of Fame 56
- It’s back! PHT’s Team of the Day summer series starts tomorrow 7
- Pens sign Spaling — two years, $4.4 million 13
- Agent: Subban hasn’t told me to make him NHL’s highest-paid D 30
- Devils sign Greene to five-year, $25M extension 18
- Subban seeking $8.5 million in arbitration, versus the Habs at $5.25 million 46
- Marchand on Plekanec: ‘I hate him. I can’t stand him’ 59
- Gettin’ paid: Gardiner inks five-year, $20.25M extension with Leafs 15
- Report: Trottier to join Sabres’ coaching staff 21
- Cashing in: Rangers sign Brassard to five-year, $25 million deal (63)
- Lindros, LeClair and Desjardins to be inducted into the Flyers Hall of Fame (62)
- Marchand on Plekanec: ‘I hate him. I can’t stand him’ (59)
- Subban seeking $8.5 million in arbitration, versus the Habs at $5.25 million (46)
- Trotz plans to let Johansson, Kuznetsov, and Burakovsky compete for time at center (45)