A couple days ago, I said this man needed confidence. Four goals later, including first career hat trick, I would say that isn’t an issue anymore. (Photo: Robert Kowal/flickr)
You get a goal! And you get a goal! And you get a hat trick! Cause why the heck not throw one of those in?
Seriously, I don’t even know where to begin on the Rangers-Sabres game I just witnessed. Thirteen Rangers had points, a record was broken, a milestone hit, and more importantly the Rangers actually took control of a game they had to win. It was a lot of fun to watch. Even better was the regulation win eliminated both the Sabres and Flyers from playoff contention.
The first eighteen minutes of the game was a choppy, feeling out period for both teams. A couple of chances for both sides but nothing worth talking about. I thought it was going to be another nail biter. The moment the clock hit 18:30 of the first period, all hell broke loose.
First it was Carl Hagelin wrapping the puck around the net and banking it in off a Sabres defenseman with 1:18 remaining in the period. Stepan and Lundqvist got the assists on that one. Yes, Lundqvist got an assist. The next shift, the Rangers looked like they were going to give it right back but 57 seconds later, Brad Richards took a shot from the right faceoff circle that hit another Sabre and went past Miller to make it 2-0. Zuccarello got the only assist on that one. Seventeen seconds after that, Miller fanned on a clearing attempt and Ryane Clowe buried it to give the Rangers a 3-0 lead to end the first period.
Needless to say the Rangers fan base was in shock and thought they had seen it all. They had not.
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