Rangers: 3 players who stood out in the 3-1 win against the New Jersey Devils

New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad (93) follows through on a shot against New Jersey Devils left wing Erik Haula (56) during the third period at Madison Square Garden
Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers once again strengthened their chances of winning the Metropolitan division by beating the New Jersey Devils 3–1 on Monday night. Three players stood out for the Rangers in this win.

3. Zac Jones shines for the Rangers in place of Jacob Trouba

With the injury of Jacob Trouba, the Rangers needed somebody to step up in while he recovers. In tonight’s game, Zac Jones was the one who stepped up and put in a strong performance and was one of the better defensemen on the ice for the Blueshirts. He even had a key assist on Erik Gustafsson’s goal in the second period.

2. The Erik Gustafsson we saw earlier in the season returns

Finally. Where the heck has this Erik Gustafsson been the past few months? He has been on a notable regression the past few months compared to how he played earlier in the season. Gustafsson was so bad to the point that many wanted to see him moved at the deadline.

The Rangers kept him on the roster, and games like this are why he was not moved. Gustafsson was the best player on the ice for the Blueshirts. He shined on defense and made some nice plays in this game. He thrived most on offense, scoring a goal in the second period to extend the Rangers’ lead to two goals.

This was a great bounce-back game for Gustafsson and hopefully, he can keep playing like this when it gets to the playoffs.

1. Mika Zibanejad finally nets a 5 v 5 Goal

Mika Zibanejad has had a weird season for the New York Rangers. He has been a good player, but it was a little concerning that Zibanejad has not scored a 5 v 5 goal in a while.

But that concern is gone now as Zibanejad finally netted a 5 v 5 goal on Monday. It was the first goal of the game for the Blueshirts. This was Zibanejad’s 20th goal of the season. He also became the fifth player in franchise history to score 20 goals in at least seven seasons.

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