Henrik Lundqvist stopped 27 shots for the Rangers, earning the shutout in front of a national audience on NBC Sports. The game itself was mostly a well-fought affair, as the Preds did muster 27 shots on goal. Anders Lindback turned aside 26 shots in his first start since December 23rd, with both goals against coming at the end of some overly-long shifts.
UPDATE: You can listen to Pete Weber's radio highlights from the game via the following link:
Video highlights and post-game reaction from today's win after the jump:
Your random observations:
- The Rangers were definitely looking to take the body on the Preds, throwing hard hits whenever they had the chance.
- Keith Jones did a great job on the NBC Sports intermission show breaking down the 2:10 shift by Ryan Ellis and Jack Hillen which ultimately led to the opening goal for New York. There were a couple opportunities in there for them to get to the bench (at least one of them), and they failed to do so.
- And as Jim Diamond observed, Roman Josi was out there for 1:53 on the shift which led to the second goal, which included him skating across in front of Lindback just before Mitchell's shot was fired.
- I know many people wondered why Anders Lindback got the start in today's game, and I agree that it made more sense to play him against the Islanders (with the odd start time), but one factor which I can't imagine had any impact was the fact that this game was on NBC Sports.
- That said, the goaltending usage over these two days doesn't appear to have mattered much. Anders The Giant didn't get any run support tonight.
- The Preds weren't just playing the second half of a back-to-back set, they also essentially played short a forward as Brian McGrattan took just 4 shifts, and none after the midpoint of the second period.
- Craig Smith didn't look so hot in his return to the lineup. Seth pointed out how he passed up the shot on a 2-on-1 rush, and in the later stages of the 3rd, he had almost no strength on the puck, losing possession on several occasions as the Preds tried to get back into it.
- The Kostitsyn-Fisher-Erat line generated some decent possession time in the offensive end, but outside of that there wasn't much to offer at even strength. On the power play, there's definitely a step down from Ryan Suter to Francis Bouillon back on the point.
- From here, Nashville heads to Columbus for a game Thursday evening.