NEW YORK – Take a deep breath Ranger fans, Marian Gaborik looks like he will be fine.
After leaving the ice midway through the third period, the Rangers’ franchise scorer said, “it’s nothing.” And the injury was not related to his hip or groin that plagued him in the past.
Although he didn’t know when he would skate and didn’t skate in practice today, the right wing wasn’t limping after the game.
Well, that’s good, because the Rangers need hi, especially after he scored twice in the team’s 5-2 over the Phoenix Coyotes.
“It’s pretty obvious what he adds to this team,” said netminder Henrik Lundqvist. “He adds a different level that we haven’t had since (Jaromir) Jagr. He could be the difference in a tight game. It’s not like he scores three goals one game and is quiet for another game. He brings it every night.”
Gaborik’s second goal, making the game 4-0, on the night actually looked like something out of the Jagr playbook with a slapshot from the right circle that blew past Ilja Brygalov, who was chansed from the crease right afterwards.
Yet, the Coyotes came back in the game with two late goals in the second period to make the game 4-2, which concerned John Tortorella, but didn’t panic the team.
“That’s something we didn’t want happen,” Tortorella said. “It is something we have to learn as far as situational play and situational awareness. It is what it is going into the third. We said now we in for a game and we need to play the right way.”
The right way is what made the game 4-0 with goals from Artem Anisimov and Vinny Prospal to go along with Gaborik’s two goals. The Rangers played a crisp game and dominated in the neutral zone, giving Lundqvist (30 saves) the protection he needed.
“I think the big thing was getting a two goal lead and get comfortable,” said center Brandon Dubinsky. “They are a pretty good team over there. They put some pressure on us and we kind of got away from it in the second.
“When you are a couple of goals with 20 minutes left to go the mindset in the locker room is to buckle down, get the win. We were able to do that.”