New York Rangers Scandinavian Sensations
When it comes to the NHL, especially the playoffs, there are many factors that are crucial for success and making a deep run in post-season, none more so than goaltending.
Many Coaches and General Managers would do anything to have a high caliber goaltender. In fact, if you ask them, that would be their top priority in almost any situation. And the Rangers have two of them.
Future Hall of Famer Henrik Lundqvist from Sweden, who's been the starter for many years now in New York, and backup Antti Raanta from Finland, have been on absolute fire this season, and have formed the best goaltender pairing in the league
.The Scandinavian duo recently finished a stretch of 10 games only allowing eight goals, with three shutouts, with both goalies being named as NHL second stars of the week.
Raanta came in as the clear backup to his Swedish counterpart, but his consistent all-star level performances won him multiple consecutive starts, as he pushed Lundqvist for the starting position.
Make no mistake, we know who the starter is, and will be, when we get to the playoffs, but the Rangers know that they now have two guys they can rely on to get the job done, especially in pressure situations.
The Swede and the Finn look sharp, but will that be enough against their arch rival and nemesis Pittsburgh Penguins? Hopefully, we'll get a chance to see come playoff time.
The Rangers currently have a 2.14 GAA, which is fourth in the league, but they lead the NHL in games where they have only given up two or less goals. The Rangers have been very stingy and hard to score against all year, and this can also be attributed to a strong defense, along with their defensive minded forwards.
The Rangers will need to rely on these strengths come playoff time, but lets not forget, this team can score goals too. They're getting scoring help from all four lines, so the Rangers are showing signs of a complete team.
And just as I'm writing this, Rick Nash gets hurt again.
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