Throughout the lockout, many blogs are doing fake recaps of the games that should’ve been taking place. I’ve decided to go another route by doing real recaps…of the games that happened on that date one year ago.
For any Coyotes fans out there, yes the headline is a nod to the joke that followed your team two summers ago. It also happens to be how many games in a row the Rangers had won after their game on November 15, 2011 versus the rival Islanders.
As is always the case when it comes to Rangers-Islanders games, this one was a back and forth affair that included a little bit of everything. The first period was mostly quiet for both teams although the Rangers did dominate in shots 14-5. Of course the period ended with the two teams tied at one.
The Rangers got on board first as Sean Avery got his second of the season with a little over five minutes remaining in the period. You can see video here. (No, I’m not trying to avoid showing video of Avery scoring. There is none other than on the recap of the game.)
Of course, as is always the case when the Rangers dominate a period, they gave it back less than three minutes later to end the period tied. The only other action in the period was coincidental unsportsmanlike penalties to Avery and Mike Mottau. Why is that relevant? Because when they exited the box in the second, this happened:
If I remember correctly, everyone knew that was going to happen. It was a horrible fight but I’m sure they both felt better after getting the chance to throw the punches they were denied in the first.
I guess Brandon Prust and Matt Martin were jealous that their teammates were fighting because less than two minutes later, this happened:
Eminger did end up getting the extra penalty which hurt even more since one of the Rangers best penalty killers (Prust) was in the box for standing up for him. Fortunately the Rangers killed off the penalty and Eminger was able to make up for a little over a minute after coming out of the box. Unfortunately again I couldn’t find video but you can watch it here.
I did find video of a Lundqvist header though so here you go:
One day he is going to regret doing that. All I hope is I miss that game for whatever reason.
Other than a couple of minor penalties for both teams, the remainder of the second passed without incident and the Rangers entered the third with a 2-1 lead. Which they held onto for less than seven minutes.
Fortunately the Rangers had spent a lot of money on a guy over the summer and he decided to earn his money that night by scoring the winner with less than five minutes remaining:
Great turnover Bailey. I think my favorite part of that video is Callahan’s reaction as he realized the puck was in the back of the net. You can see the exact moment he sees it. As for my favorite part of the goal (besides it helping the Rangers beat the Islanders), that was after the game when Henrik Lundqvist said this:
“That’s why we signed him for nine years,” goaltender Henrik Lundqvist said with a smile. “A guy like that has the tendency to step up at the right time.”
Not surprised the guys made comments about the length of that contract. Fortunately he had other moments of glory as the season went on.
Callahan added an empty netter with a second to go and the Rangers got revenge for their loss exactly one month to the day. Remember when after that loss the Rangers were 0-1-2 on the season and everyone thought the team was done? They went 10-2-1 after it including the seven game winning streak they were currently on. Guess nothing wakes a team up more than a bad loss to a rival.
Unfortunately everyone knows winning streaks have to come to an end. Next up was Montreal in Montreal on a Saturday night. I didn’t have a good feeling about that game a year ago. I probably should’ve gone with my gut and skipped it. But since the lockout has no end in site, we get to re-live it in a couple of days.