Last night Derek Stepan scored his second game winner in as many playoff games on a georgous feed from Carl Hagelin to help the Rangers tie the series at 2-2...
Here's Ryan Callahan on Hagelin's improved play in the postseason (via Daily News)...
“He’s willing to make more plays with the puck, he’s more comfortable. The story with him all along is his speed. He pressures defensemen and creates turnovers, and when he’s doing that, it’s hard to defend him.”
...sometimes when there's so much passing in tight the puck is usually poked away and you wish they would have just shot the puck, but not in this case.
...also amazing work by Callahan keeping the puck alive for the Blueshirts seconds before the goal.
...it really doesn't get nicer than that folks.
Actually it just might, as Derrick Brassard's two assists we're just as sick...
To watch at NHL.com, click here.
To watch at NHL.com, click here.
...with Nash and Zucarello yet to really get going in this series it will be imperative that Brassard keeps up his outstanding play.
...and how about Hagelin's snipe. As reader AnnoyingJoe said last night, nice to see his hands finally catching up with his feet.
Here's Brassard on his outstanding play in the postseason (via New York Post)...
“I knew how intense the games would be in the playoffs, but when you start on the road it’s a lot harder and I was a little bit nervous. I just started relaxing here and I feel the crowd. I play with emotion and I play with passion and it’s a lot easier when you play at home."
That, was as nice a goal as I've seen. Great that Ovi doesn't play D. Hag has good hands - don't think they've "caught up with his feet", they've always been there. With pracitce and patience he will become a decent finisher but his game will always be creating opportunites with his speed, and with more sick passing. Also Zucc has looked very good to me. He looked undersized in game 1, and game 2 was a bit quiet but not bad. Last 2 games he looked like he belonged on the 2nd line of a playoff team. Nice poise and confidence with 5 foot 7 inches of grit. I say we keep him lol
Did you see Brassard after Holtby stopped him as he tried to go under his left arm? He was smiling talking to his teammates. That dude is in heaven right now and having a blast! I hope he keeps it up, even when adversity strikes, and it will. The thing you have to love is that if he keeps going and Stepan keeps going, teams will have to worry about stopping them, which probably opens up ice for Nash.
BTW, I always criticize NBC announcers because I really do think they have an anti-Ranger bias, all except Pierre McGuire. I think he just LOVES to see good hockey plays, regardless of who makes them! Kudos to Pierre for his love of the game!
Stepan was tied for 2nd in the league with 6 GWGs this season. Started slowly in the regular season and finished very strongly, and it's looking like the same thing for this series.
@gravey94 When do we loose the home announcers? Last year I was trying to listen to the internet voice stream for the home team and sync it up with the TV. Was pretty challenging :)
And at this point Stepan is leading all forwards in time on ice per game in the playoffs at 23:25. Cally is 3rd at just under 23 minutes/game, and leads all forwards with 13 blocked shots and has 20 hits. They've been great defensively, especially together on the PK, and they're starting to put it together offensively too. It'd be nice to see them connect for a shorthanded goal tomorrow night, they've been close a bunch of times this series.