Did Jagr have a heart transplant or what? Maybe he was possessed! Maybe he sold his soul to the Devil. Whatever he did this guy was moving. Jagr has once again proven that when he wants it, he is almost unstoppable. This guy looked like a work horse the entire game. He back checked, forecheck, moved it well, passed, shot, and scored.He led this team by example. Showing why he is wearing the "C" for the New York Rangers. He even threw a few hits. I can't be more pleased with his game, along with all Ranger fans.
Jagr came out with a fired up Rangers squad. Whatever coach Tom Renney said to this team, it worked. They came out ready for the Buffalo Sabres team. A team that was the Presidents Trophy winner. They pushed with everything they had. And it payed off.
Jagr and Shannahan were the scorers in Gotham this time around. However you really have to be impressed with the entire team effort. Jagr's goal on the power play came just 45 seconds into the second period. A deflected puck off a feed from Nylander and Rozsival found the back of the net. This gave the Rangers tons of momentum for the rest of the game. I think after that goal the entire team, along with the rest of the "Faithful" at MSG had to breath a sigh of reliefe to see the Rangers on the board first.
After this the Rangers really had to press on the gas. This game was far from over. It was time to put away all dout that the Rangers didn't have the heart to play a full 60 minutes. They put all skeptics to rest when they didn't give in. They fought again and once again were rewarded with another goal. This one coming in the 3rd period off a great feed from Cullen to Shannahan infront of the net. Shanny as an experienced player waited out goaltender Ryan Miller and was able to put the puck pass the goalie on the glove side for the Rangers second of the night.
This was once again far from over. Just 33 seconds after the Rangers took a 2-0 lead Buffalo responded. A scramble infront of the net had the puck come off of Connolly's stick to meet Kotalik infront of the net. With a quick release Kotalik brought it back to a 1 goal game. This goal ending Henriks attempt at a 2nd carrier playoff shutout in a game where "Henrik, Henrik" was chanted from thefront row to the rafters of the worlds most famous arena.
Lundqvist kept the Rangers team in this game the entire night, making some very key saves through the game to give the Rangers the type of back stop they needed to keep firing. With Lundqvist in net the Rangers were confident enough to keep attacking. They didn't just sit back on their 1 goal lead and wait the Sabres out. They kept going right back at them. Showing that this mix of Veteran knowledge and Young hunger along with strong goaltending was what the Rangers needed to bring their game to the next level.
With only 13.7 seconds remaining in the game the crowd fell silent. With some confusion behind the net Lundqvist was forced to come back around to the front and throw his right let out to meet a puck that was on the goal line and kick it back out. With a stoppage in play, this one went to Toronto. The "War Room" after a lenghty review decided to agree with the call by the Ref's on the ice. When the officals signaled no goal, the crowd at MSG when crazy. The Rangers were 13.7 seconds away from tying the series at 2 a peice. With a few more scrambles the final horn blew and the Rangers emerged victorious after another hard faught match against the Sabres.
This game was important to the Rangers as it gives them the chance to go into Buffalo's home arena and play a 2-2 series as opposed to a 3-1, one game elimination match as the visitors.
Here's to the New York Rangers team for playing a strong match and coming up on top. Proving once and for all the New York Rangers have the heart and the skill to compete with the NHL's best.