Game Report: Rangers 5, Blues 0

By Nicholas Hand

The Blues’ offensive struggles continued on Tuesday night as they were shut out by the Rangers in New York.

Henrik Lundqvist was sensational for the Rangers, earning his 60th career shutout. The Blues were shut out for the first time this season after scoring only one goal in each of their last three games and in five of their previous six.

Dan Girardi started the scoring for the Rangers at 9:37 of the first period when a slapshot following a Chris Kreider pass changed directions off of Vladimir Tarasenko’s stick and around starting netminder Jake Allen.

Less than two minutes later, Jimmy Vesey increased the lead to 2-0 on the power play after a terrific passing sequence that broke down the Blues penalty killing unit, which had killed off 31 of 33 penalties this season coming into the game.

Robby Fabbri had a chance to cut the lead to one but was robbed by Lundqvist on a breakaway late in the period.

The floodgates opened for the Rangers offense in the second period as Rick Nash’s fifth goal of the season gave New York a 3-0 lead at 6:18 of the period.

Vesey intercepted a bad stretch pass by Blues defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk and broke into the Blues zone creating the opportunity for Nash on a second attempt to stuff the puck past Allen at the side of the net.

Mats Zuccarello added another power play goal at 12:55 as the Blues pulled Allen and inserted back-up Carter Hutton for the remainder of the game.

Kevin Hayes finished a tic-tac-toe odd-man rush past Hutton at 18:17 to put the game away with a commanding 5-0 lead for the Rangers.

Lundqvist shut the door after that with 10 third period saves.

Of Note: The Rangers lead the NHL in scoring with 40 goals. The Rangers have scored at least five goals in three of their last four games… Blues captain Alex Pietrangelo left the ice limping with the assistance of teammates and trainer Ray Barile at the end of the first period. Pietrangelo returned for the second period and played regular minutes the remainder of the contest… Tuesday’s game marked the 1,000th NHL game of Jay Bouwmeester’s career… The Blues offense remains snake bit despite putting 35 shots on goal.

Between the Pipes: Lundqvist made 35 saves including nine first period saves on several high percentage scoring chances. Allen made 16 saves on 20 shots in the loss before Hutton took over and allowed one goal on nine shots.

Looking Ahead:
The Blues travel to Dallas to take on the Stars on Thursday night before returning to St. Louis for two games on Saturday and Sunday.