In game one against the Bruins, Rick Nash played 20:54 and had six shots on goal.
The six shots on goal were the most he had in a game in the playoffs since game one against Washington.
Nash also had three of his shot attempts blocked.
Glen Sather told the NY Post that he has no doubts at all about Nash and that Nash really wants to live up to the expectations set out for him.
John Tortorella said before game one against Boston, via Ranger Rants, “he certainly wasn’t totally on but he’s very close. I thought he played very well in Game 7. I think he’s going to be a really big part of this against Boston.”
Nash told the NY Times that even though he was in a funk, he was really happy that the team was able to pull out the series win against the Capitals. Nash said, “as long as we win, that’s all that matters. The most important thing is the team.”
The Sporting News has more on Nash.
In game seven, Rick Nash picked up an assist, had two shots on goal, one shot that was blocked and one that missed the net.
Nash also had a takeaway and four blocked shots in 18:12.
On his performance in game seven, Larry Brooks wrote in the NY Post that even without a goal, Nash was more of a force than he had been in any other game in the series.
Nash told Brooks that being in the playoffs, in a game seven, was a learning experience and something that he wanted to enjoy before starting to focus on Boston.
He told the NY Times that winning a playoff series and playing in a game like game seven means a lot to him.
Adam Rotter: Moving on to the next round gives Nash another chance to get going in the playoffs. It also brings on the challenge of playing against Zdeno Chara, which is never easy. Nash seemed to be moving a lot better in game seven but there are still questions about his overall health in the playoffs. They managed to get through one round without Nash being much of a factor, I think it will be much tougher to move past a Bruins team with a lot of size experience if Nash isn’t a big factor.
In the Rangers win over the Capitals yesterday, Rick Nash played 17:48, was screening Braden Holtby on the game winning goal, and had one shot on goal, one shot blocked and two hits.
On MSG last night, Al Trautwig asked Joe Micheletti what he thought was going on with Nash and Joe said, “I think he is hurt, I really do.”
Micheletti said that he made sure to focus on Nash yesterday and saw that he didn’t seem to have that second push in his legs when he has a step on a player. Joe made sure to point out that it’s not a lack of effort from Nash, but something physical that looks to be limiting his effectiveness.”
Before the game, on MSG, Joe Tortorella told Sam Rosen that all he wants from Nash is for him to relax, saying “Nasher is such a good man and wants to help us so much. It’s building up on him/ I think you need to have some fun with it and relax. This is the fun part, I just want him to enjoy himself and allow himself to go.”
At 2:24 of overtime last night, Rick Nash registered his first shot on goal of the game.
He added another to finish the night with two shots on goal and one shot that was blocked in 20 minutes of ice time.
Nash said on MSG last night that he isn’t sure if he is frustrated but that he knows he needs to help the team.
He added, “It’s just not working for me right now. Right now I just gotta work out of this slump. They are closing the space and not allowing much room.”
Nash said that when he is defended like that the key is to try and find your teammates which is what he was doing last night.
Adam Rotter: It has not been easy for Nash. He has guys jumping all over him anytime he has the puck, he gets hit and seems to be flipped at least once a game when he goes to the net.
Last night he seemed to want to act as more of decoy, draw people to him and try and dish the puck to an open teammate. He isn’t shying away from trying to make an impact or ducking the media, he just hasn’t been able to find his way in this series.
It may end up that when the season ends we find out that Nash has been playing through something serious, like Marian Gaborik last year, but the expectation is that if he is in the lineup, he needs to do his job.
Through the first four games of the playoffs, Rick Nash has had stat lines of:
- Game 1: 23:04, eight shots on goal, five shots blocked and three shots that missed the net, 1 hit
- Game 2: 23:04, three shots on goal, three shots blocked, three shots that missed the net, 2 hits
- Game 3: 19:31, 1 assist, four shots on goal, tw0 shots blocked, 1 that missed the net, 1 hit
- Game 4: 16:49, two shots on goal, 1 shot blocked, minus two.
Following game four, Larry Brooks wrote in the NY Post that the Rangers received strong performances up and down the lineup, with the exception of Nash who was “all but invisible.” Brooks added “it is baffling.”
The 16:49 was the fifth lowest ice time he has had this season.
- On March 23, Nash played 16:23 in a game against Washington where he had two assists.
- On April 6, he played 14:17 against Carolina where he had a goal and an assist
- On April 19, he played 16:11 against Buffalo and had a goal and an assist
- On April 27, he played 14:29 against the Devils and had two goals.
John Tortorella said on Thursday that Nash won’t get down on himself for not scoring, “he isn’t built that way” and that while he has had chances the puck just hasn’t gone in for him.
Derek Stepan told the Daily News that Nash will get going and said that it’s tough for him because “when you are Rick Nash, every time you touch the puck, you’ve got five guys on you.”
On the playoffs so far, Nash told NHL.com that he feels good but that he knows he has to work harder as Washington tries to take away his time and space and shrink the zone when defending him.
Nash is being defended mostly by Mike Green/Karl Alzner and John Erskine/John Carlson.
For the second straight game, Rick Nash was held without a point and played exactly 23:04.
Nash had three shots on goal, three shots blocked and two shots that missed the net.
Nash also beat Braden Holtby but hit the post in the third period. That play drew a power play for the Rangers.
In game one, Nash had eight shots on goal, five shots that were blocked and three that missed the net.
On MSG yesterday, Brian Leetch said that he, Al Trautwig and Ron Duguay all thought Nash was going to make the ultimate difference in the game because of the chances he was getting.
Ron Duguay said that it’s not a matter of questioning Nash’s will, “he wants to compete, he wants to score that goal.”
Leetch added that Nash wants to be the difference and John Tortorella keeps putting him on the ice so he has a chance to be.
Leetch said that Nash is having to adjust to being checked much tighter than he was in the regular season.
During his in-game interview with Pierre McGuire, John Tortorella said that Nash was getting chances and it seemed like it was only a matter of time before he got going.
In his first playoff game since 2009, Rick Nash played 23:04, had one hit and one blocked shot.
Nash also had eight shots on goal, five shots that were blocked and three shots that missed the net.
Seven of Nash’s eight shots on goal came in the second and third period.
via the Washington Post, Nash’s shot chart from last night:
When asked about Nash, Brian Leetch said on MSG that Nash could play better and looked like he needed to get his legs under him. Leetch thinks that Nash will get better as the series goes along and as he works to get his legs under him.
Nash told Puck Daddy that he needs to be better in game two and start scoring with the chances he is getting.
Today, Nash told Dan Rosen that he felt good on the ice but since he couldn’t finish it doesn’t matter.
In the Washington Times, Stephen Whyno spoke with Martin Erat who said that the playoffs are what Rick Nash wanted when he left Columbus and now that he has an opportunity to play “it’s his time to shine.”
Erat, who played against Nash when he was in Nashville, “he can make room for himself, and he’s always dangerous. You’ve got to be able to keep an eye on him every time he’s on the ice.”
Nash was asked at practice yesterday and said that while he doesn’t have playoff experience, he knows that he needs to step up. “There are no other options, it’s the way it has to go.”
He added that playing for Team Canada in the Olympics and World Championships has put him on a pressurized stage before
Nash’s former teammate told the Washington Times Jason Chimera thinks that Nash’s style will translate really well to playoff hockey.
In the Daily News, Nash said that he enjoys pressure and thinks it will bring out the best in him.
Nash has said that he is ready for the challenge.
When the Rangers play game one of their first round series, it will be the fifth career playoff game for Rick Nash.
Nash told Pierre McGuire that his time so far with the Rangers has been “unbelievable” and everything that he wanted.
McGuire asked him about the playoffs and Nash said that he expects them to be a lot of fun.
Nash told reporters after the game that as an athlete you want to play in meaningful games and that he wanted to come to the Rangers for these kinds of moments.
“It’s what I signed up. There isn’t a bigger stage. Great athletes love the pressure. When the pressure is on some guys produce at a better rate.”
He added that while he doesn’t have much playoff experience, he will find out what it takes to play in the playoffs fast.
Puck Daddy listed Nash as one of the players under the most pressure in this year’s playoffs.
John Tortorella said on Monday that he isn’t going to say anything to Nash about being in the playoffs and that Nash is a “pro” with no maintenance and just a love for playing hockey.
Adam Rotter: I’m not worried about Nash in the playoffs. He has stepped up in big situations this season and was an absolute force for Team Canada at the 2010 Olympics. He came to NY wanting to be in the playoffs, wanting to play for a contender. He isn’t going to shy away from expectations. As he said, he knew what he was walking into when he wanted to come to the Rangers.
Rick Nash had a goal and two assists last night ending a streak of three games in which he was scoreless and a minus three.
Nash only had one shot last night, he had 10 total in the previous two games, but had the game winner on the power play in the first period.
John Tortorella was asked about Nash last night and said on MSG that he has played well all year, “does everything” and needs to be involved, and usually is, when the team needs two or three goals to win a game.
In the NY Post, Larry Brooks writes that the while Nash has been the least of the Rangers problems this season, he needs to carry the Rangers night in and night out.
Nash told Brooks that he puts a lot of pressure on himself to perform but says that there are no excuses for not playing well, “you have to be at your best every night.”