They haven't come up with a catchy name in New York like Legion of Doom or the French Connection quite yet, but pairing together Rick Nash, Brad Richards and Marian Gaborik for Wednesday night's showdown with the Bruins was certainly worthy of a statement.
The line combined for three goals all scored off the stick of Gaborik and the three forwards finished with 15 shots on net and a plus-6 in New York's 4-3 overtime win at Madison Square Garden.
It's safe to say the line made its presence felt in the B's dressing. There wasn't a single B's player that could take the puck off Nash's stick as he darted around the ice, Richards simply put plays together and Gaborik dazzled with his speed and aggressive forays to the net.
"It's huge. I think the three of them combined is like $26 million [in payroll], so they definitely expect a lot out of them. They played great tonight and scored some big goals [for the Rangers]," said Milan Lucic. "They caught us flat-footed in the beginning, but to see that hunger for us to get back into it was good."
Gaborik got two on the board in the first seven minutes of the game when it appeared the Bruins weren't quite ready to play, and then scored the game-winner just 27 seconds into the overtime session.
The goals were all different: one was a set play run off a perfectly times Brad Richards redirect pass into the offensive zone with Gaborik and Nash charging hard from each wing, the second was a rebound of a Michael Del Zotto shot from the face-off circle with Andrew Ference and Dougie Hamilton providing an open pathway to the net and the last was a simple breakaway with the Rangers forward swatting the rebound attempt out of mid-air for the decisive goal.
"Gaborik is a good player and he showed why tonight," said Johnny Boychuk, who was chasing the Rangers speedster on the overtime goal. "It's obviously a really high-powered line when you put them all together. You've just got to bear down and try to limit their chances. They're three of the best players in the league."
Tuukka Rask certainly did his best to shut the high-powered trio down after his defense failed him on the first two goals allowed within the first six minutes of the game. Both goalie and defensemen corps locked it down from that point, and the Bruins goaltender made the save of the night to preserve the overtime point.
Bruins enjoy challenge of Richards, Gaborik, Nash line
CSN New England | Jan 24