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Road Warriors: Rangers win in Montreal, again, for 2-0 series lead

May 19, 2014, 10:54 PM EDT

RangersWins AP

The Eastern Conference final couldn’t have started much better for the New York Rangers.

For the Canadiens, it couldn’t have started much worse.

After getting blown out in the opener and losing Carey Price, the Canadiens failed to draw even with the Rangers on Monday night, dropping a 3-1 decision to fall behind 2-0 in the series while further frittering away their home-ice advantage.

The Rangers, meanwhile, proved once again to be a highly effective road team, winning their sixth away game of the postseason and fourth straight, dating back to Games 5 and 7 of the Pittsburgh series. Part of that success comes from the team’s red-hot power play, which on Monday scored for the seventh time in those four road wins.

Much like they were in Game 1 against Montreal, the Blueshirts were led by the quartet of Martin St. Louis, Rick Nash, Ryan McDonagh and Henrik Lundqvist. McDonagh, who has been an absolute Habs killer in this series, had a goal an an assist, now giving him six points over the first two games; St. Louis and Nash both found the back of the net for the second straight contest — the fifth goal of the postseason for St. Louis, the second for Nash — while Lundqvist was his usual solid self, stopping 40 of 41 shots for his 10th win of the postseason.

In the other goal, the story wasn’t as good.

Dustin Tokarski, making his NHL playoff debut in place of the injured Carey Price, allowed three goals on 30 shots and didn’t look especially sharp, though he was hardly at fault for the loss. Montreal gave the inexperienced netminder just one goal of offense and have now beaten Lundqvist just three times on 63 shots.

Max Pacioretty scored the lone goal for the Canadiens, an unassisted marker early in the first period to briefly give his team a 1-0 lead. McDonagh evened the score 17 seconds later on another unassisted marker.

With the win, New York is now two wins away from its first Stanley Cup Final appearance since 1994; the Habs, meanwhile, will now try to become the 20th team in playoffs history to win a series when losing the first two games at home.

In order to achieve the feat, the Habs are going to have to win at least two games at MSG… which means they’ll need to conjure up some road magic of their own.

  1. billiam55 - May 19, 2014 at 10:57 PM

    should i get the broom out?


    • arrow43050 - May 20, 2014 at 12:07 AM

      don’t jinx anything with that crap

    • kaptaanamerica - May 20, 2014 at 12:23 AM

      It’s comments like yours that make people think NYR fans are arrogant pricks. It’s the comment from arrow* in the reply that let’s others know that not every NYR fan is a prick.

      • manhattanraised - May 20, 2014 at 12:51 AM

        & its comments like yours that let others know that some people are just way to uptight. Arrogance has always been linked to new yorkers in general, not limited to NYR or NY sports fans. & one harmless comment isn’t altering anyone’s opinion

      • homieshome - May 20, 2014 at 2:45 AM

        What the heII are you saying? Let the guy enjoy the in. Montreal fans are the least of our concerns, they whine a lot and make us out to be the Bruins on our meanest day. Quit selling out your own fans just to look “classy”.
        Go Rangers and bring out the brooms

      • homieshome - May 20, 2014 at 2:51 AM

        @KaptaanAmerica, What the heII are you saying? Let the guy enjoy the win. He wasnt being a prick you idiot, he was being a fan and its called bragging rights.. And Montreal fans are the least of our concern anyways after all that whining the last couple days, they can’t lose without complaining so were not gonna win without raving back in their faces.

        Go Rangers and bring out the brooms

      • homieshome - May 20, 2014 at 2:57 AM

        I hate this site. So damn slow and your messages cant even send properly.

    • johnstone17 - May 20, 2014 at 5:44 AM

      Still a lot of work to be done.

  2. r8rbhawk - May 19, 2014 at 10:59 PM

    Habsfans, the good news is Tokarski didn’t look terrible. The bad news is they still would have lost even if Price was in net. Nice energy for the first 10 minutes but after that it was the Rangers’ game. As a Hawks fan, the last thing I want is the PP, St. Louis, and Nash heating up, just makes NYR that much more difficult. Lundqvist was a beast tonight. I still figured the Rangers would win this series, but I had doubts they could compete with the Hawks, these past two games may have changed my opinion.

    • jason9696 - May 20, 2014 at 12:03 AM

      I didn’t realize Chicago had already beat LA?

      • r8rbhawk - May 20, 2014 at 1:52 AM

        LOL, I guess I shouldn’t count my chickens before they hatch. Just doing some scouting in hopes my team advances.

  3. canucks30 - May 19, 2014 at 11:01 PM

    Ole Ole Ole

  4. bsfan77 - May 19, 2014 at 11:08 PM

    Habnots looked aweful. Gooooooooooooo Rangers!

    • homieshome - May 19, 2014 at 11:22 PM

      Hmm not really, I wouldnt say that, they did ok 5-on-5 tonight, it was very different than Game 1 but overall the Rangers still outmatched them, just differently then they did in game 1.
      They just couldnt get through the Rangers D tonight. It reminds me of when we played your B’s last year. We were simply outmatched in every aspect in every game, except game 4..

  5. dominicthedonkey - May 19, 2014 at 11:10 PM


    Simply Awesome !!

    • puckluckpost - May 20, 2014 at 1:06 AM

      That performance was “priceless” … erh, I mean outstanding.

  6. drewsylvania - May 19, 2014 at 11:10 PM

    So. Many. Dives. The fans thought every one of ’em was a penalty.

    Didn’t fool the refs though.

    • buckhome - May 20, 2014 at 8:39 AM

      It’s been that way in MTL forever. Not necessarily the dives, but the fans moaning whenever one of theirs falls, is hit, has a dirty look sent their way. Seen it since the ’60s – nothings changed with the Canadiens’ fanbase.

  7. thesportsjudge - May 19, 2014 at 11:11 PM

    And now, your REIGNING, NORRIS, TROPHY WINNER….oh, wait, this can’t be right, a -2? Can someone check to see if this is right?

    Well, on the other hand, he DID say he was looking forward to it getting nasty in Boston. So, he got his wish. It just happened to be against New York, in Montreal.

  8. ajg314 - May 19, 2014 at 11:11 PM

    The Rangers withstanding the original push by the Canadiens in the first 10 minutes of the game was critical and then scoring the tying goal less than a minute after they scored and that was all she wrote. Except for Montreal’s push in the last 5 minutes of the game, it was too little, too late. In between the first 10 minutes and the last 5 minutes, Montreal was not into this game, which surprised me a lot. I think Montreal feels like they’ve already been beaten. Henrik was the difference in this game tonight, no ifs, ands, or buts about it. Let’s Go Rangers!!

    • ajg314 - May 19, 2014 at 11:13 PM

      One more thing; I don’t usually engage in trash talking, not my style, but I gotta say that so far in these first two games, the “great” Subban has stunk up the ice. He has made a ton of mistakes.

      • pete387 - May 20, 2014 at 1:06 AM

        I guess all those hot dog celebrations in the Boston series angered the Hockey Gods.

    • fpstratton - May 20, 2014 at 12:53 PM

      Yes, I am a bit surprised by the lack of resistance from Montreal, but the Rangers may really be this good! At this point, with a netminder like Lundqvist really smelling the Cup and playing as well as he is, they will be very difficult to beat. The real story though, in my mind, is the resurgent Ranger offense and their speed. They have literally and figuratively taken their play to another gear.

  9. muckleflugga - May 19, 2014 at 11:16 PM


    yeah … for sure … get the broom out

    just make sure you have it back in time for your old lady’s nightly graveyard flight or it will be

    double double toil and trouble lmao

  10. chip56 - May 19, 2014 at 11:16 PM

    Montreal could have had a d pair of Subban and McDonagh.

  11. nashernation - May 19, 2014 at 11:17 PM

    The Blue Shirts are clicking on all cylinders.. The King was just insane tonight. St. Louis is in the zone and Mac was in elite form.

  12. r8rbhawk - May 19, 2014 at 11:17 PM

    Ranger fans, quick question, how much better does this team look with AV at the helm instead of Torts? From my eyeball test, they appear faster and actually try to score while their compete level looks just as good as it did last year. What are your opinions on this?

    • homieshome - May 19, 2014 at 11:29 PM

      Torts has had somewhat success in the last 2 seasons getting to the ECF and the 2nd round but he wore us down, hence 2011-12. And we seem more confident now, and also faster like you mentioned. I like our offense a bit better too, its different.

    • stakex - May 19, 2014 at 11:30 PM

      Well for most of the playoffs they have looked quite a bit like the team from the last few years. It wasn’t until game five of the last series when they suddenly seemed to find that extra gear they just never quite got to with Torts. Well see if that includes and ability to win a series in something less than 7 games… something the Rangers haven’t done in a long time.

    • homieshome - May 19, 2014 at 11:31 PM

      Oh but i want to add that i have no regrets from him being here. He might’ve left but his defensive system still remains and is a big reason why this team can be SO good defensively. So yeah, the team is different but it literally looks like a blend of both torts and AV’s system.

    • homieshome - May 19, 2014 at 11:31 PM

      Oh but i want to add that i have no regrets from him being here. He might’ve left but his defensive system still remains and is a big reason why this team can be SO good defensively. So yeah, the team is different but it literally looks like a blend of both torts and AV’s system. Not to mention the PK is partly thanks to Torts also.

    • 19to77 - May 19, 2014 at 11:35 PM

      A big part of that is distributing ice time intelligently. AV likes to roll all four lines for significant TOI and not overload his top guys unless they’re playing from behind. Results? The Rangers look way fresher in the playoffs, and the Canucks aren’t actually in them. The Sedins went from winning an Art Ross apiece to scoring 40-50 points this year. Go figure, this is the first year in either of their careers where they were played for over 20:00 average TOI or started a significant chunk of their shifts in the defensive zone and/or on the penalty kill. A big part of good coaching is knowing how to use the players you’ve got to the best of their abilities.

    • manhattanraised - May 20, 2014 at 12:07 AM

      I’m going to try & tackle this one.

      AV is absolutely the main reason why this team is a cup contender. This team under torts would have retained their 2nd round ceiling. He rolls 4 lines & know how he wants to use them all. He’s not afraid to adjust when needed. In recent years the lack of goal support for Hank is always what does us in. That is no longer case. We look & feel like the 11-12 Canucks. All in all, he maximizes our talent & was the change in attitude the team needed at the top. Torts’ brash approach grew old. & while that is certainly true, Torts deserves some credit. He pushed our young core of players hard, & turned them into men. But we never would have excelled offensively as we do now, without the switch.

      With that all said, everything over the past year & a half, every move that Glen Sather made has fallen perfectly into place. In the postgame you may have noticed the analysts credit Sather for 1.) Not buying out Richards. 2.) Hiring AV over Messier. & 3.) Trading for St.Louis. In addition I’d like to make note of his effort to bring back Dominic Moore after his year off from hockey this off-season. As well as his decision to BRING BACK Zuccarello, on a cap friendly deal, when plenty of rangers fans had given up on him being an impact player. Taking a flyer on Benoit Puliot, who has paid huge dividens. Then, the big one…Trading Gaborik…Bringing back Brassard, Dorsett & John Moore. All in the lineup, all contributors on this cup bound team. Huge trade. Some people criticized it but oh how critical it clearly was. As good as gabby has been in LA. It was exactly what we needed. So its not all AV, but we sure as hell wouldn’t be here, right now, looking this good, under Torts. Everything has fallen into place. And also noteworthy, virtually this entire team is in their prime, or entering it. & they are playoff battle tested. We’ve finally turned the corner. & it WOULD NOT be this way without AV, yes.

      • puckluckpost - May 20, 2014 at 12:11 AM

        Thank you Keith Jones.

      • barkar942 - May 20, 2014 at 1:08 AM

        Agreed. What Torts taught them all defensively is boding very well for AV. What AV has added is the green light to get up the ice and play in the offensive end, without the fear of being benched on defensive mistakes.
        He has also solidified the back end with the trade of DelZotto for Kline. John Moore struggles occasionally defensively, but has played well most nights.
        AV also has quietly become the respected boss of the team. Just watching the clip of Subban yapping at Boyle at the end of the second and AV calmly telling Boyle to Move On.
        The team has become much more fun to watch. They are enjoying themselves, and they are much more rested with a 4 line team.

      • r8rbhawk - May 20, 2014 at 1:58 AM

        Thanks for the analysis boys. I don’t catch a ton of Ranger games (gotta keep my priorities to watch the Hawks, rewatching game 7 from last year’s Redwings-Hawks series as I type). Wanted to get a feel for what you guys thought. Good luck the rest of the way against Montreal.

      • buckhome - May 20, 2014 at 8:50 AM

        Compliments for Sather? You can’t truly be a Rangers fan, can you?

    • johnstone17 - May 20, 2014 at 5:43 AM

      Difference between AV & Tortorella. 4 lines. AV has faith his fourth line can contribute, while Tortorella acted as if they were a log jam on his bench. If the Rangers matched the Devils with four lines in 2012, that could have been a different story.

    • jvalen13 - May 20, 2014 at 10:31 AM

      I agree with many of the Rangers fans that have replied to your post, but I would like to add that AV lets the team leaders motivate motivate the team, Were Torts felt like he had to motivate everyone. That gives the players more buy into his system.

  13. ironmd778 - May 19, 2014 at 11:19 PM

    What a difference a week makes, eh Montreal?

  14. peepeehead - May 19, 2014 at 11:22 PM

    The Canadiens did all of America a big favor by knocking out the Bruins so if you guys decide to riot and burn down Montreal can you do us one more teensy weensy little favor?; burn down Toronto while you’re at it! ROTFLMAO!!!

    • homieshome - May 19, 2014 at 11:27 PM

      Lol the riot has already started. 100,000’s of French people in the streats singinmg “We’re not gonna take it!! NO!! We arent gonna take it! We”re not gonna take it, anymoreeeee1″
      It’s a pretty weird site.

      • peepeehead - May 19, 2014 at 11:59 PM

        If any of those Frenchmen get arrested they’re going to be in for a shock. They make you take showers in jail, lol

    • puckluckpost - May 20, 2014 at 12:14 AM

      The Bruins knocked out the Bruins.

      • fpstratton - May 20, 2014 at 12:58 PM

        Respectfully, I disagree. Montreal legitimately outplayed the Bruins. The Rangers are just better than both the Habs and Bruins at this point in time.

  15. stakex - May 19, 2014 at 11:22 PM

    Remember when Subban said he felt sorry for the team that had to come into their building before the series started? That statement looks laughably ridiculous at this moment.

    • peepeehead - May 19, 2014 at 11:25 PM

      He felt sorry for them because they would get really tired scoring a lot of goals.

  16. jason9696 - May 19, 2014 at 11:40 PM

    I didn’t think Montreal played all that bad tonight. They had a lot of great scoring chances. But Henrik Lundqvist was the huge difference maker.

    • puckluckpost - May 20, 2014 at 12:18 AM

      I thought Montreal looked a little “reckless” out there tonight.

  17. bigdaddy44 - May 19, 2014 at 11:56 PM

    Call it justice, call it karma, all went right in the hockey world tonight.

  18. puckluckpost - May 20, 2014 at 12:31 AM

    Nice to see a couple of Boston boys (Chris Kreider and Brian Boyle) helping the cause!

    • r8rbhawk - May 20, 2014 at 1:55 AM

      That’s right, we are going to have an international incident on our hands, the only thing saving a full-blown Quebecois boycott against Americans is our boys Brian Gionta and Max Pacioretty. If they were not members of the Habs, watch out.

    • joey4id - May 20, 2014 at 7:39 AM

      How many good old Canadian boys are helping the cause?

  19. dannymac17 - May 20, 2014 at 3:36 AM

    where did all these Rangers fans come from?

    • puckluckpost - May 20, 2014 at 8:04 AM

      This one came from watching Chris Kreider play High School hockey a mile from my house and watching Martin St. Louis since his days at UVM… and Dominic Moore (Harvard) losing his wife to cancer makes me hope good things happen for him.

    • infectorman - May 20, 2014 at 8:11 AM

      where did all the Montreal fans go?

      • davidmessina63 - May 20, 2014 at 9:59 AM

        Right….they come out in full force when their team wins but hide under the rocks when they lose. I’m waiting for the Price excuse……but..but….same fans that were pumping out their chests with the Tampa sweep and were not tolerating that the goalie issue for Tampa helped them at all. Montreal fan base probably the biggest whiners in sports.

  20. iceman8383 - May 20, 2014 at 8:55 AM

    Let’s Go Rangers!!

  21. entitymn - May 20, 2014 at 9:36 AM

    This Minnesota sports fan to the Habs fans:

    My apologies for rooting for your team. I should have known what that would cause.

  22. joey4id - May 20, 2014 at 9:38 AM

    For all post playoff travel plans you can call 1 800 – tee – time. Lights out for the Habs unless Price makes a miraculous recovery. All hail King Henrik.

    Go Ranges! The Cup will find it’s way to Quebec one way or another this summer as it usually does every summer.

  23. jimeejohnson - May 20, 2014 at 10:42 AM

    Whammy: there will be a parade but it won’t be in Pittsburgh.

  24. marcg1957 - May 20, 2014 at 11:43 AM

    To all Rangers Fans – What would you say if it was Lundqvist that got injured by a Montreal player instead of Price would you singing the same tune or would you be whining that your goalie got taken out of the series by Montreal? With a healthy Price and no Lundqvist Montreal would be leading 2-0 in this series. You can’t say that the Rangers are better than the Habs without Price. Rangers are lucky that Price is out & Lundqvist is in.

    • fpstratton - May 20, 2014 at 1:00 PM

      I can absolutely say that the Rangers are better than the Habs, regardless of the goaltending. Price is not as consistently good as Lundqvist. He can be outstanding, but has more valleys than King Henryk does.

    • wtf_seriously - May 20, 2014 at 1:09 PM

      Maybe the Habs should think about getting a quality back-up goalie, like any other playoff calibre NHL franchise.Talbot (Lundqvist’s backup) had a great win % this past season.
      Of course, then you would have to find another factor for your “Why We’re Losing Blame Game.”
      And yes: currently, when it counts, the Rangers are a better hockey team than the Habs.

  25. justinpecora50 - May 20, 2014 at 4:19 PM

    PK Subban is lucky he’s just a -3 for the series. Price bailed him out twice and the kid saved him once. He’s gotten a couple of really good looks, his stick handling is pretty, but boy his D is awful, just make him a forward already. Tokarski played ok, the 2nd goal is soft, but considering, he did enough to get the start at MSG. By the way both MTL goals this series were dirty, Bourque off of McD and Patcioretty off himself. Hank is so zoned in right now. Let’s move the game to Wednesday night!!

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