Joel Ward scored twice, Joe Thornton broke a tie early in the third period and the San Jose Sharks overwhelmed Henrik Lundqvist and the New York Rangers in a 4-1 victory Saturday.
Lundqvist stopped 42 of the first 43 shots he faced before allowing three to Thornton, Ward and Joe Pavelski on four shots in a span of 3:20 that sent the Sharks to their third straight home win. Tomas Hertl had three assists and Martin Jones made 25 saves to help San Jose move within a point of second-place Anaheim in the Pacific Division.
Former Shark Dan Boyle scored the lone goal for the Rangers, who stayed in the game for two periods because of Lundqvist's brilliance before falling apart in the third. >> Read more
- A 1-1-1 road trip out West against three playoff teams isn't "terrible", but that is the word you can use to describe how the Rangers played for long stretches of this trip. They really hit both sides of the spectrum with their defensive play on this trip, a widely praised effort against Anaheim and then today which was just mistake after mistake and open guy after open guy around the net.
- There have been times in the past where the Rangers didn't get a lot of offensive opportunities or zone time, but their defense and ability to block shots, take the body and bring everyone to Henrik Lundqvist was outstanding. Now they aren't getting a lot of quality offensive chances and are not defending either.
- The players, leaders and coaches on this team aren't dumb. They know they aren't playing well and know that they keep making the same mistakes. Why they keep doing this though is not something that I can answer. They will say the right things, talk about how it's unacceptable and prepare to be ready for the next game, only to have these same things repeat. The players need to hold each other accountable and get these things fixed.
- The fact of this inconsistent regular season is that this team was always going to be judged on the playoffs and whether they could get another shot at the Stanley Cup. They aren't playing like it for the most part but this team does have the ability to make a deep run. Will they make a deep run though remains to be seen. When they play at a certain level and a certain way they can play with anyone. They will bring that level in the playoffs, the question is whether they will bring that it at least 4 out of 7 times.