The New York Rangers’ fifth preseason game against the New Jersey Devils concluded on Wednesday night. The Blueshirts lost this game 5–2. Despite the loss, there were some positives and a clear negative that occurred in the game.
Can the Rangers rely on Jonathan Quick?
In the previous preseason game against the New York Islanders, Jonathan Quick did not deliver a strong performance. This performance needed to be better to instill more confidence not only in the fanbase but also to ensure that the Rangers had a Plan B if Igor Shesterkin were to get injured. Unfortunately, Quick did not boost confidence but rather instilled fear as he had yet another poor showing against the New Jersey Devils.
Statistically, his save percentage was a dismal .778, with only 14 saves made. It’s worth noting that the Devils only shot the puck 18 times, which is deeply concerning given Quick’s performance. While it is the preseason and there’s hope for improvement in a regular-season game, the backup goaltender role still carries a significant question mark heading into the season.
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Chris Kreider looked like his old self
Chris Kreider has been mostly quiet during the preseason, but he was actually solid tonight. Not only did he make an assist on Adam Fox’s goal in the game, but he also blocked two shots. Blocking shots in the NHL is no easy task, and Kreider’s effort continues to impress me in that regard.
However, there was one negative aspect to his performance as he struggled defensively against Jesper Bratt when he scored his first goal for New Jersey. Admittedly, it was on a powerplay, but it’s an area where Kreider needs to improve.
Will Cuylle could sneak his way into playing time
If there are two players on the New York Rangers who have stood out the most this preseason, the first is Brennan Othmann, and the second one is Will Cuylle. This game adds to the tough decision regarding Cuylle’s roster spot, as he once again made a strong impression in this game against the Devils.
He showcased his offensive skills by scoring the first goal of the game for the Rangers in a crucial moment when they were down 2-0 entering the second period. Unfortunately, it wasn’t enough as the Rangers eventually lost the game, but that goal proved to be a game-changer for the Rangers at the time.