Matthew Iaboni April 7, 2010
Madison Square Garden
New York. NY
The Maple Leafs were looking to play spoiler but it took the Rangers just 21 seconds to open the scoring. Before the 11 minute mark of the first period it was 3-0 and the Leafs couldn't get back in the game.
Erik Christensen's second of the period put the Leafs down 3-0 and it was all over. The Leafs have been struggling to score in their last three games getting just two goals in that stretch.
Seconds it took the Rangers to open the scoring in the first.
The Rangers' top line of Erik Christensen, Marian Gaborik and Brandon Dubinsky were too much for the Leafs to handle on Wednesday. Not only did Christensen score two goals, Dubinsky had two assists while Gaborik had one as they combined for five points and a plus six.
Christensen was claimed off waivers from Anaheim and he has been a great pick up. He has played on the first line since his arrival and the Rangers have a record of 5-1-0 when he scores a goal.
Playing for the first time in five games and just the second in 12 games, Jeff Finger was by far the most physical of the Leafs on the night. He had a big hit on Marian Gaborik in the second period that the Rangers took exception to.
Finger hasn't seen lots of action this season but he hasn't complained as he has gone out and brought a physical dimension to the blueline. He had seven hits on the night which led both teams.
The Leafs played their final back-to-back of the season and their record in the second games wasn't very good. With the loss to New York, the Leafs fell to 5-11-2 in the second game. Overall they played on consecutive nights 18 times this season
WIth a young team fatigue shouldn't be a factor but a reason could be that the players aren't quite used to back-to-backs and the rigours that they put on them.
Ron Wilson's take on the game against the Rangers:
"Some guys didn't play and didn't respond physically when we needed it. The Rangers were playing with the intensity you need to play with when you're on the outside looking in. They are clawing and doing everything to get in."
Saturday April 10 @ Montreal Canadiens 7 PM ET (CBC, AM640)
The Leafs close out the 2009-10 season against the rival Montreal Canadiens. The Canadiens have taken three of the first five games this season.
Depending on how things play out the next few days, the Canadiens could have a playoff spot locked up before the game starts.