Lightning at NY Rangers tonight. Other than the overtime period, it was a pretty slack-ass game on the Bolts’ part; they simply got out-played.
With three exceptions:
3rd Star: Vaclav Prospal – even his third-try stuff game winner in overtime doesn’t get him past the next two stars… besides, the only reason Lundqvist’s skate left the post was due to his falling backward; physics won over Lundqvist’s muscles, and Prospal snuck that shit in.
2nd Star: John Grahame – even getting his second shutout of the season and making 36 saves versus the paltry 20 shots his teammates put up tonight can’t vault him to first star. Yes, he was solid as hell in net… perhaps trying to regain Tortorella’s favor after phenomenal play by Burke. Not enough.
1st Star: Paul Ranger – this kid was—without doubt—the best player on the ice for the Lightning tonight. He pulled so many highlight-reel defensive plays during the game that I couldn’t believe I yelled his name as much as I did. Given the numerous defensive-zone turnovers the Lightning provided (read: they were sucking hardcore), it was great to see Ranger jettison team fog and kick some ass.