Jonny Brodzinski

Bruins Shutout Rangers On Rainy Night

The New York Rangers opened their preseason tonight with a 3-0 loss in Boston. Starting 45 minutes later than scheduled due to travel delays, it took probably another 20-30 minutes for the team to properly find its rhythm, and except for some costly mistakes, the visiting Blueshirts probably ended the game with more quality chances.

It was a game without meaning for either team, with the focus really being on combinations and the opportunity for players to impress upon their new coach in hopes of earning a call-up later in the year.

Chief among the decisions will be the 13th forward spot, with Alex Belzile, Riley Nash and Jonny Brodzinski probably being the leading candidates. Of the three, it was Belzile who probably had the best outing, and seemed to not only generate offensive opportunities, but to also be able to make plays in the other two zones. It’s early days of course, but he would have been happy with his outing.

Meanwhile Brodzinski probably had the best offensive chances of any Ranger in the game, including a shot that hit the post early in the second period, and another in the third that saw Bruins netminder Brandon Bussi snatch it out of the air as he slid to his right to cover the weak-side.

Veteran Riley Nash – who did not play in the NHL last year – had a few moments, but wasn’t as effective in any area as the others.

On defense, Zac Jones came out looking confident with the puck, particularly in the first. It’s not really the area of the ice he needs to make the most improvement, and it remains to be seen whether he can be effective in his own end. Matthew Robertson had a relatively unremarkable outing, but seemed to get more ice time as the game went on. Certainly there weren’t many glaring mistakes – unlike what we saw from Braden Schneider – but there were not really any newsworthy plays either.

Connor Mackey saw his first action in a Rangers uniform, and looked like he might be a credible call-up if the Rangers need some help during the season. He was particularly solid when handling the puck, and wasn’t necessarily tested much defensively.

Back in the net, the Rangers elected to start with Jonathan Quick who played the first 30, and then Louis Domingue to finish it off. It was a far from perfect outing for the 38-year-old veteran who signed on to be the backup for the Rangers over the offseason. He looked small in net, and wasn’t really tested on his lateral movement, giving up all three goals while facing the shooter, twice with daylight between them. All three shots had a degree of difficult, but it was concerning that Quick was unable to come up with one or two big saves, and could easily have given up a 4th if the puck hadn’t slid off the end of the Bruins Attacker’s stick with the net open in the first.

The Rangers will head back to New York to get ready for their next game against the Islanders on Tuesday. It’s expected we’ll see close to a wholesale change for that game.

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