Rangers 6, Penguins 1
Derick Brassard and John Moore had no way of knowing just how well their debut with New York would go.
They started the day at practice with Columbus and ended it as key offensive forces in the Rangers’ surprising rout of Pittsburgh on Wednesday night.
Brassard and Moore arrived just 15 minutes before pregame warm-ups, following a trade that sent star forward Marian Gaborik from the Rangers to the Blue Jackets.
Throw in Ryane Clowe, acquired Tuesday night in a deal with San Jose, and the newcomers were the driving force in New York’s highest-scoring game of the season.
“I shook their hands and said, ‘Go have fun,’“ Rangers coach John Tortorella said. “Everybody is coming up to introduce themselves, and they’re trying to get their (stuff) on.”
Clowe had his first two goals of the season and an assist, Brassard had a goal and three assists, and Moore also scored his first of the season to power the Rangers to victory. Brian Boyle, not a newcomer, also broke out with a goal and three assists.
If they were nervous in the bright lights, it sure didn’t show.
“I didn’t have time to be nervous,” Brassard said. “I was stressed out with everything and saying bye to my teammates.
“We got here like 15 minutes before, and everything was ready for us. It’s a great experience I am going to remember for the rest of my life.”
The Rangers scored three goals in the first period and never looked back. New York was also buoyed by a season-high three power-play goals.
Henrik Lundqvist got a chance to relax a bit, making 26 saves and earning his 268th win, the second most in Rangers history.
Clowe had no goals in 28 games this season with the Sharks, but quickly dropped the zero in New York.
“I just wanted to have a good start and get into it early, not ease my way into it,” Clowe said. “It went well.”
Moore’s goal at 9:17 of the third pushed the lead to 6-1. Brassard and Boyle both notched their third assists of the game. Before Wednesday, Boyle had one goal and one assist in 31 games this season.
“We got the offense going,” Boyle said. “The new guys gave us a spark — more than a spark. It was just cool to welcome them.”
The Rangers moved into a tie with the New Jersey Devils and New York Islanders with 39 points at the bottom of the Eastern Conference playoff race.
Pascal Dupuis scored in the second period for the Penguins, who lost for the second consecutive night after 15 consecutive victories.
Marc-Andre Fleury made 33 saves.
The Penguins (28-10) were again without captain and NHL scoring leader Sidney Crosby, who missed his second straight game and is out indefinitely because of a broken jaw.
“It’s going to have to be the guys in this locker room. Syd isn’t coming back on Friday,” Dupuis said. “It has nothing to do with skill level. It has to do with battle level, and wanting it more. We can’t seem to find it the last couple of days.”
Pittsburgh also made some noise before the deadline by acquiring center Jussi Jokinen from the Carolina Hurricanes to help offset the loss of Crosby. Jokinen wasn’t in the Penguins lineup.
Flyers 5, Montreal 3
Wayne Simmonds and Erik Gustafsson scored goals late in the third period and Philadelphia won a third straight game for the first time this season as it makes a push for a playoff spot.
The Flyers had been 1-11 when trailing after two periods.
With the Flyers trailing 3-2, Simmonds tipped in the puck from the crease for the tying goal. Less than 2 minutes later, Gustafsson’s pass for Matt Read went off a defenseman and into the net past a stunned Carey Price for his 10th goal and a 4-3 lead.
Jakub Voracek scored an empty-netter with 39 seconds left.
Sean Couturier and Simon Gagne also scored for the Flyers. Alexei Emelin, Brandon Prust and David Desharnais scored for Montreal.
Ducks 5, Stars 2
Captain Ryan Getzlaf had a goal and two assists, and Teemu Selanne scored his 673rd career goal in Anaheim’s victory over Dallas.
Viktor Fasth made 23 saves and Radek Dvorak scored his first goal for Anaheim in the second of three straight meetings in five days between the Pacific Division-leading Ducks and the last-place Stars, who lost 4-0 in Dallas on Monday.
Lane MacDermid scored his first NHL goal in his Dallas debut, and Kari Lehtonen stopped 22 shots in the Stars’ first game since trading Jaromir Jagr to Boston and Derek Roy to Vancouver. Erik Cole also scored for the Stars.
Kyle Palmieri snapped a 13-game goal drought and Andrew Cogliano scored an empty-net goal as the Pacific Division-leading Ducks improved the NHL’s third-best record to 25-7-5.
Sharks 4, Wild 2
Dan Boyle scored on a spectacular end-to-end rush with a two-man advantage to help San Jose win its sixth straight game.
Marty Havlat got the scoring started for San Jose and Joe Thornton broke a tie with a goal off the skate of a Minnesota defender late in the second period. TJ Galiardi also scored and Antti Niemi made 31 saves to help the Sharks move into a tie for fourth place in the Western Conference.
Charlie Coyle and Dany Heatley scored for the Wild, who lost for the third time in four games following a seven-game winning streak. Niklas Backstrom made 29 saves as Minnesota lost consecutive games for the first time since Feb. 12-14 to fall into a tie for the Northwest Division lead with Vancouver.
Oilers 8, Flames 2
Taylor Hall had a goal and four assists in helping Edmonton win its fifth straight with the rout of reeling Calgary.
With 12 games to go, Edmonton sits eighth in the West, one point up on the St. Louis Blues and the Nashville Predators. The Columbus Blue Jackets are two points back.
Jordan Eberle and Nail Yakupov scored two goals apiece, and Sam Gagner, Ryan Whitney and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins had one goal each for Edmonton.
Matt Stajan had both goals for Calgary. The Flames have lost seven of their last nine to remain second from the bottom in the West and 28th overall. Winless in its last 11 road games, Calgary begins a three-game road trip Friday in San Jose.
Bruins acquire Redden, Flick
The Boston Bruins have acquired defenseman Wade Redden from the St. Louis Blues and center Rob Flick from the Chicago Blackhawks.
The trades came before the NHL's trade deadline Wednesday and one day after the Bruins obtained five-time NHL scoring champion wing Jaromir Jagr from the Dallas Stars.
Redden, who has played in 1,017 NHL games, was obtained for a conditional seventh-round draft pick next year that becomes a sixth-rounder if he plays in at least one game during this year's playoffs. He has two goals and three assists in 23 games this season.
Flick was traded for forward Max Sauve in a deal involving AHL players. Flick has three goals, two assists and 97 penalty minutes for Rockford. Sauve has 10 goals and 13 assists for Providence.
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