for this game

Jagr helps Rangers rout Panthers

Feb 25, 2008 - 4:14 AM
By Larry Fleisher PA SportsTicker Contributing Writer

NEW YORK (Ticker) - Jaromir Jagr wore a smile after scoring for the second straight game. The way things have gone for the New York Rangers recently, they have had plenty of things to enjoy.

Jagr scored 6:12 into the second period as the Rangers gained a point in their seventh straight game with a 5-0 victory over the Florida Panthers on Sunday night.

Jagr scored for the second straight night after going a season-high 12 games without a tally. He scored in the first period of Saturday's 4-3 win at Buffalo and a day later highlighted another solid showing at home for New York, which has swept back-to-back games in consecutive weekends.

For Jagr, it was his 638th career goal. For the Rangers, it pushed them to 5-0-2 in their last seven and 10-3-1 in their last 14 since getting swept in a home-and-home series with the Boston Bruins five weeks ago.

"Once you are winning you feel confident about your game," Jagr said. "I think we had the same thing last year when we needed to win a lot of games late in the season to make the playoffs. I think we realize it and that is the way we play now."

It also marked the first time since December 29-30 that Jagr scored in consecutive games. Although he has just five goals since then, neither his teammates or coach Tom Renney felt Jagr's level of play has slipped.

"He's playing the way we need him to play," New York center Scott Gomez said. "A guy like that, he sets the bar so high - but he's been a solid a player for us all year.

"I think he's coming around at the right time. For whatever reason, just because he's not getting a point, he's still out there (and) teams are worried about him. He creates, but I think it's vintage Jagr right now. The last month, he's been our best player."

The tally also gave Jagr six points in his last three games and marked the first time since an eight-game points streak from December 18-January 2 that he had points in three straight.

"For me, he's gotten some points the last few games but his game hasn't changed a whole lot," Renney said. "He continues to work hard. He continues to come back hard and he's certainly within our framework of how we want to play, providing excellent leadership given his status and persona and all that.

"Maybe finally after the equal sign, there are some results that are tangible for him. I know he'll be the first one that tells you as long as our team is winning, it doesn't matter."

Jagr's 17th goal of the season came after he forced defenseman Ruslan Salei into a giveaway inside the defensive zone. He motored through the neutral zone, left a drop pass for Sean Avery and then went to the net to finish the give-and-go.

Jagr did so after getting past a defender and forcing All-Star Tomas Vokoun to come out of the crease. After getting the netminder to vacate the crease, Jagr put Avery's pass inside the left post.

"I couldn't pass to anybody," Jagr joked. "Everybody was covered. It was an empty net, too."

Gomez and oft-maligned defenseman Marek Malik scored the first two goals for New York, which five weeks ago was in ninth but is now in sixth place in the Eastern Conference. The Rangers are two points ahead of Boston and four points in front of Buffalo.

Gomez and Malik also set up New York's fourth goal, which Nigel Dawes scored 5:54 into the third. Martin Straka, who set up Malik's tally, capped the scoring midway through the third.

Straka's goal marked the second time in three games that New York possessed a five-goal lead. The Rangers also had a five-goal lead Tuesday in Montreal before losing, 6-5, in overtime. This time, they never let up and were looking for another goal.

"We got a point out of Montreal but when we had five (on Sunday), we were definitely going for six to make sure," Gomez said.

Henrik Lundqvist made 23 saves for his eighth shutout of the season and 15th of his career. The Swedish netminder made five saves in the first, stopped nine in the second and turned aside nine in the third.

"I think the last couple of weeks we have been playing pretty good," Lundqvist said. "We showed ourselves that we are a team that can play really well."

A night after a dramatic comeback in Philadelphia, Florida lost for the third time in four games. The Panthers also continued to struggle against the Rangers as they have been outscored, 30-10, in losing seven of their eight visits (1-7-0) to Madison Square Garden.

"They play with the puck. We play without it. The skill level and work ethic they had, we didn't really have a chance," Florida captain Olli Jokinen said.

Florida's most lopsided defeat of the season kept them in 12th place, five points behind Buffalo for eighth.

Gomez got things started for the Rangers at 7:53 of the first with his 14th goal. After Brendan Shanahan rebounded defenseman Fedor Tyutin's point shot, the loose puck went off defenseman Branislav Mezei and to Gomez, who swept a backhander past Vokoun.

Gomez also had the secondary assist on Malik's first goal since April 7. He dug the puck out from behind the net and fed Straka, who found Malik streaking through the slot.

The most constant target of boos for Ranger fans, Malik heard some rare cheers when his slap shot from the slot sailed over Vokoun.

"It was nice," Malik said. "It was more important to get the 2-0 lead. After that we felt a little more relaxed and comfortable."

Vokoun, who did not play Saturday, allowed five goals for the fifth time, equaling his season worst performance.

"There's no excuse," Jokinen said. "You should have a work ethic every night. Their skilled players worked harder than any of our guys so there you go, it's 5-0."








  • NHL
    FINAL 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 0 0 0 0
    NY RANGERS 1 2 2 5 FINAL
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYR - SCOTT GOMEZ 14 (BRENDAN SHANAHAN, FEDOR TYUTIN) 7:53
    2ND PRD: NYR - MAREK MALIK 1 (MARTIN STRAKA, SCOTT GOMEZ) 4:57
    NYR - JAROMIR JAGR 17 (SEAN AVERY) 6:12
    3RD PRD: NYR - NIGEL DAWES 10 (MAREK MALIK, SCOTT GOMEZ

    Feb 24 9:30 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 0
    NY RANGERS 5
    3RD PRD: NYR - MARTIN STRAKA 11 (RYAN CALLAHAN, CHRIS DRURY) 9:32

    Panthers 0, Rangers 5  3rd - 10:28Feb 24 9:11 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 0
    NY RANGERS 4
    3RD PRD: NYR - NIGEL DAWES 10 (MAREK MALIK, SCOTT GOMEZ) 5:54

    Panthers 0, Rangers 4  3rd - 14:06Feb 24 9:04 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 2ND 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 0 0 0
    NY RANGERS 1 2 3 END OF THE 2ND
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYR - SCOTT GOMEZ 14 (BRENDAN SHANAHAN, FEDOR TYUTIN) 7:53
    2ND PRD: NYR - MAREK MALIK 1 (MARTIN STRAKA, SCOTT GOMEZ) 4:57
    NYR - JAROMIR JAGR 17 (SEAN AVERY) 6:12
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL

    Feb 24 8:36 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 0
    NY RANGERS 3
    2ND PRD: NYR - JAROMIR JAGR 17 (SEAN AVERY) 6:12

    Panthers 0, Rangers 3  2nd - 13:48Feb 24 8:11 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 0
    NY RANGERS 2
    2ND PRD: NYR - MAREK MALIK 1 (SEAN AVERY, SCOTT GOMEZ) 4:57

    Panthers 0, Rangers 2  2nd - 15:03Feb 24 8:08 PM


  • NHL
    END OF THE 1ST 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLORIDA 0 0
    NY RANGERS 1 1 END OF THE 1ST
    GOAL SCORING:
    1ST PRD: NYR - SCOTT GOMEZ 14 (BRENDAN SHANAHAN, FEDOR TYUTIN) 7:53
    SHOTS ON GOAL: 1ST 2ND 3RD TOTAL
    --- --- --- -----
    FLA 5 5
    NYR 12 12
    GOALIES: FLA - TOMAS VOKOUN
    N

    Feb 24 7:44 PM


  • NHL
    FLORIDA 0
    NY RANGERS 1
    1ST PRD: NYR - SCOTT GOMEZ 14 (BRENDAN SHANAHAN, FEDOR TYUTIN) 7:53

    Panthers 0, Rangers 1  1st - 12:07Feb 24 7:21 PM
  • 5
    roots
    Sensfan4eva Added 5 roots

    Panthers vs. RangersFeb 22 4:25 PM