A little behind here, but I'm forgiven because the Rangers won both weekend games (and 3 in a row...), right?
Well, regardless, a combined 5 Things:
*Two pretty solid defensive efforts from the NYRs the last two games. And equally importantly - two pretty solid team efforts. Sticking up for one another. Skating. Passing. Puck support. You know, the good things.
*I was kinda surprised the Boston/Rangers game on Saturday was so nasty. Bruins/Rangers games since the lockout have been low scoring affairs (1-0, 2-1 shootout, the like; St. Patrick's Day Massacre of '07 notwithstanding). But this Saturday's game not only had goals (5 of 'em) but nasty stuff. I seriously do not remember as much of this in a long time. Sure, Boston didn't like it when Avery skated into Thomas with his characteristic "what," but Sjostrom took a punch to the face, and it was over...right? Who knows. Kinda made it fun to watch, though. So long as no one got hurt.
*Speaking of hurt. Accidents happen. It's a fast game. When Prust went down, bloody, and thrashing, that hurt to watch. Thank goodness he was okay. And kudos to him, coming back for Sunday's game, and playing a career high in time on ice. Good stuff.
*I know it should get old, Hank outdueling Brodeur. But you know, it doesn't. Why? Because for so long (re: too long, TOO long, embarassingly TOO long) the Devils owned the Rangers. I have no problem that the Rangers seemingly have control over the rivarly for the moment. It's kinda fair. Now, I still prefer a Rangers/Devils rivalry that is, indeed, a rivarly. Close games, intensity, fight from both teams. And, thankfully, these have remained so. I like six games a year, much better than the eight though. There is a such thing as too much of a good thing.
*Special teams. Hmm. Rangers scored a powerplay goal in each game. Allowed one in Boston. Held NJ scoreless yesterday. The bad: They are taking way too many penalties, and so far, their penalty kill has not been as essentially perfect as the last two years. The good: Their powerplay, even though it's not scoring, does not look as bad as it has in years past. They are moving the puck! Puck. Movement. Amazing, right? Also, getting some shots on net from the defense never hurt, now did it? They may just have the right idea. Now they just need to work on capitalizing on it.
A bonus video for you all. The lovely GWG against Boston from Marc Staal, who although taking too many silly penalties recently, still looks great with the "A" on his sweater: