The openly rebuilding New York Rangers didn’t get blown out of the water in their first game under new head coach David Quinn, but they didn’t have enough to beat the Nashville Predators, either.
Pekka Rinne was quite sharp through a fairly tightly-played game, while P.K. Subban scored what was truly (though not technically) the difference-maker by beating Henrik Lundqvist with a howling shot.
Subban showed the form that helped him score 16 goals last season with this one:
That wasn’t the game-winning goal thanks to a slightly daffy closing sequence that Quinn will probably hope to forget.
It looked like the Rangers might draw a key late power-play opportunity while down 2-1, but with the penalty delayed, New York ended up with too many men on the ice. That infraction negated the would-be advantage, and then the two teams traded goals (a Colton Sissons empty-netter, followed by a nice deflection by Pavel Buchnevich) to end the contest 3-2.
That miscue marred what was, overall, a pretty decent debut for the new-look Rangers under Quinn. Rinne was forced to make 34 saves in this one, so the rebuilding Rangers gave the reigning Presidents’ Trophy winners a decent fight.
This could be a long season for a franchise that hasn’t been in this spot in a long time, yet perhaps this is something to build on.