Jimmy Vesey and J.T. Miller tried to help fuel a late rally for the Rangers after falling behind 2-0, but the Maple Leafs held on and won, 3-2, on Saturday night at Madison Square Garden. >> Box Score
- 17:14 TOR William Nylander; Assists: Auston Matthews, Morgan Rielly
- 0:50 TOR Ron Hainsey (Power Play); Assists: Morgan Rielly, Mitchell Marner
- 2:37 NYR Jimmy Vesey
- 11:22 TOR Auston Matthews; Assists: Zach Hyman, William Nylander
- 11:25 NYR J.T. Miller; Assists: Pavel Buchnevich, Chris Kreider
- Overall, the Rangers probably played a better game tonight than they did against Jersey but there is still A TON that the Rangers need to improve upon when they return from the Christmas break. They left players open all over the ice, struggled with their positioning and couldn't get enough pucks deep.
- The last few weeks have been a real throwback for the Rangers in that they have no business being in a lot of these games except that Henrik Lundqvist is playing at an extraordinarily high level. This team struggles to defend, struggles with turnovers and struggles
- It doesn't matter if Kevin Hayes was involved in the play or anything else, he was offside and that is the right call to overturn in. It's an unfortunate situation for the Rangers, and they had some more chances to try and tie it, but couldn't find the equalizer.
- I really hope this is the start of Jimmy Vesey taking the next step in his development. He's had an okay season and some moments but he was flying against the Leafs, creating opportunities and scoring for the second straight game. He looked, to me, like the player he was in the playoffs last year and the guy that looked like he was ready for a top-six chance.
- The Rangers have to score on that 5 on 3 in the first period. There is too much talent on the ice for that group not to score with a two-man advantage. Things changed in the first period after that and swung toward Toronto. The Rangers lost the special teams battle tonight and they lost the game, at least partly, because of it.
- So now the Rangers are off until Wednesday when they return from the break with games against the Caps, Detroit and then the Winter Classic. Right now the Rangers are in a playoff spot, which when you think about where they were on Halloween is something that this group should be proud of, but they have not been good enough in all areas in the past few games. They have gotten points and found ways to win but they need to be a whole lot better when things pick back up later this week before they get their bye week.
The Rangers will host the Capitals on Wednesday at 8 p.m.