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Three Nashville Blasts Beat Talbot and Rangers

Mark Humphrey/AP

Mark Humphrey/AP


NY Ranger back-up goaltender Cam Talbot started his second game in a row Saturday afternoon in Nashville against the Central Division leader Predators. Cam is now the starting goalie for the Broadway Blueshirts due to the neck injury of Henrik Lundqvist, and he better wake up to that fact real quick. Defeating the Boston Bruins in the Garden on Wednesday was one thing, playing in Nashville where the Pre3dators have only lost three times in regulation is something else. And it proved to be that something else today.

After Rick Nash scored his league leading 33rd goal of the season to stake the Rangers to a 1-0 lead, Talbot and the team looked good. But with 1:21 left in the second period, Roman Jossi left fly with a blast from 40 feet away that evaded Talbot’s glove and sailed into the net to tie the score at 1.

Then with only 40 seconds remaining in the period, She Weber let fly with one from 34 feet away that beat Talbot over his right shoulder. Two slap shots from over 30 feet away and he could not stop either. You cannot win consistently in the NHL if you allow goals like that each and every night.

The Rangers did tie the game in the third, as Ryan McDonagh took a pass from Mats Zuccarello near the Nashville Blueline and made a great move to easily beat a Predator, walk in and rip one by Pekka Rinne from about 30 feet away.

The game was then back and forth, as both teams looked for an opening, and then with about 7:30 left in the game, Seth Jones made something happen. He skated into the Ranger zone, after taking a pass from Filip Forsberg and fed Mike Ribeiro the puck. Ribeiro then wound up and let a slapper go from 42 feet away, that , you guessed it, beat Cam Talbot to the five-hole. This gave the Predators a lead they would never relinquish.

Talbot gets beat to the glove side, the stick side and the five-hole (between the legs) all in just two periods. Not good if you are going to take over for Henrik Lundqvist and try to keep the Broadway Blueshirts in the playoff hunt. The Rangers cannot afford to drop too far behind the Islanders, Penguins and Capitols, or they will find themselves out of the post season.

I like Cam Talbot and I also think he is a capable goalie, but I do not know if he can pick up the heavy workload that Henrik shouldered. He now has to fly back home and play the Dallas Stars in MSG at 5:00PM on Sunday afternoon. This game will tell a lot about his composure and his stamina. If he falls again, GM Glen Sather may be forced to acquire a veteran goalie to split the games with Cam. If he does not, then he will force Head Coach Alain Vigneault to use 20 year old McKenzie Skapski, who was playing in the AHL with the Hartford Wolf Pack and is in his first season as a pro.

I hope Cam comes through on Sunday against the Stars, or this may be the longest three weeks in Rangers history, waiting for Lundqvist to be well enough to go back between the pipes. I truly do not know what I would do if I were in Glen Sather’s shoes. This is a tough one Slats, please make the right decision.



NYR: Rick Nash (33) (PPG, Assisted by Derick Brassard & Kevin Hayes

NAS: Roman Jossi (10), Assisted by Gabriel Bourque & Calle Jamkrok

NAS: Shea Weber (12), Assisted by Roman Jossi & Matt Cullen

NYR: Ryan McDonagh (4), Assisted by Mats Zuccarello & Derick Brassard

NAS: Mike Ribeiro (11), Assisted by Seth Jones & Filip Forsberg


Team Stats                              NYR                              NAS

Shots on Goal                         32                                  23

Power Play                              1 for 2                           0 for 1

Hits                                         16                                  20

Face Off Wins                        41                                  23

Blocked Shots                         11                                  13



Goalie Stats:

Pekka Rinne: 30 Saves on 32 Shots for a SV% of .938

Cam Talbot: 20 Saves on 23 Shots for a SV% of .870


3 Stars of the Game:


3rd Star: Ryan McDonagh: 1 Goal

2nd Star: Mike Ribeiro: 1 Goal

1st Star: Roman Jossi: 1 Assist and 1 Goal



Broadway Bits:


Rick Nash scored his league leading 33rd goal of the season today, as he snared his own rebound off of a backhand shot and fired a second backhander that beat Pekka Rinne to give the Rangers a 1-0 lead in the second period.

The Rangers have scored 15 goals over their last four games.

The Blueshirts tied their season high with 41 face off wins today.

The Rangers have recorded 30 or more shots on goal in 29 of their 50 games so far this season.

The Rangers held the Predators to just 23 shots on goal and held Boston to only 20 on Wednesday. They have held their opponents to 25 shots or fewer in 15 games so far this season.

Ryan McDonagh scored a goal, had three shots on goal, blocked two shots and had two hits in 22:23 of ice time.

Derick Brassard registered two assists, won a game high 15 faceoffs, and had two shots on goal in 20:00 of ice time. He also leads the team in Assists (26), power play assists (11) and power play points (15). He is also second to Rick Nash in total points with 39.

Mats Zuccarello had an assist, three shots on goal and two takeaways in 16:21 of ice time.

Kevin Hayes had an assist, which was his first power play assist in the NHL. He also had two shots on goal and one takeaway in a season high 18:20 of ice time.

Kevin Klein played his first game against the Predators since he was acquired by the Rangers from Nashville last season in a trade that sent current Philadelphia Flyer defenseman Michael Del Zotto to the Predators.


Due to this loss, the Rangers are now in 4th place in the Metropolitan Division

They are currently 30-16-4 with 64 points and have played only 50 games

They are 2 points behind Washington but have 3 games in hand

They are 3 points behind the Islanders but have 2 games in hand

They are 4 points behind Pittsburgh but have 3 games in hand


They are still in good shape, but cannot afford to give away games as they did today, with Cam giving up three goals from such a distance. The Islanders and Penguins are not playing well, but that can change at any time and the Caps are on fire with Ovie keeping pace with Monster Nash in scoring goals.

The team must rally around the injured Lundqvist by playing even harder for Talbot and Cam MUST cut down on long distance goals and up his game to an even higher level. Can he and them do it, that my friends is the $64,000.00 question.

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