What it means: The wait for hockey is finally over, but Rangers fans will have to wait a little longer to see their team's first win of the season. The Blueshirts dropped their first game of the lockout-shortened season, falling 3-1 to the Bruins at TD Garden Saturday. They'll have a chance for a quick turnaround Sunday, but the task won't be any easier as they host the high-octane Penguins in an Atlantic Division rivalry match at Madison Square Garden.
Nash’s night: Nash's debut failed to live up to expectations with the lackluster loss, but the star winger registered his first point as a Ranger, assisting on Brad Richards’ second-period goal that cut the Bruins lead in half. Richards, who had 25 goals last season, beat Bruins goaltender Tuukka Rask on a long-range shot through traffic to whittle the score, 2-1, at 12:50.
Blown chance: Shortly after Carl Hagelin was hammered face-first into the boards, Nash drew a hooking penalty on Bruins captain Zdeno Chara, giving the Rangers a key 5-on-3 power-play early in the third. Trailing 2-1 with the chance to tie the game, the Blueshirts couldn't convert on the opportunity; failing to move the puck, the remaining 5-on-4 was also negated after Nash took an offensive-zone penalty with 20 seconds remaining in the man-advantage.
Spectacular save, then surrender: Shortly after one of Henrik Lundqvist's most jaw-dropping stops, the Bruins took a 3-1 lead on birthday boy Johnny Boychuk's third-period marker. Lundqvist sprawled to rob David Krejci with a brilliant glove save at 7:07 -- a play that was reviewed but ultimately upheld -- but couldn't prevent Boychuk from cashing in on a screened shot that gave the Bruins a 2-goal lead at 8:13 of the third period.
Baby Boom: Just two days after celebrating the birth of his first child, Bruins power forward Milan Lucic opened the scoring at TD Garden, burying a rebound to beat Lundqvist and give Boston a 1-0 lead with 5:46 remaining in the first period.
Scrappy second: What promised to be a high-energy, physical match lived up to its billing, picking up pace in the second period with two tilts just seconds apart. Three seconds after heavyweights Mike Rupp and Shawn Thornton were thrown in the box for fighting, Stu Bickel and Gregory Campbell dropped the gloves as well. The Rangers led the league with 65 fighting majors last season; the Bruins finished second with 61.
Jacobs’ jabs: After reading an apology to fans, Bruins owner Jeremy Jacobs pre-game press conference took an unexpected turn as he took several deliberate shots at the NHLPA for the recent lockout. Jacobs lamented the union for not expressing a “desire to do a deal,” but then retreated when asked to elaborate. He said the months-long labor stoppage should’ve been resolved sooner and, instead of celebrating its end, appeared to place the blame on the union for the time lost.
Up Next: Rangers vs. Penguins, Sunday at 7 p.m.