MATT: Despite getting 19:35 of ice time in a game in which his team allowed five goals, Anton Stralman left Madison Square Garden with an even rating. While that can be a deceiving stat — especially with many goals scored on special teams — I don't think it is here. I thought Stralman played a really solid game and has quietly been one of the team's most consistent defenseman on the Rangers this season, and he showed it tonight. One aspect of his game that flies under the radar is his ability to take the body, which he showed late with a check on Matt Martin that sent him into John Giannone between the benches. I'm still waiting on Stralman to take a larger role offenseively, which he's done in the past, but if he continues to play sound defense, it's a plus.
JIM: A good call on Anton Stralman, but I am going a bit further down the list of defensemen here and choosing Justin Falk as my Rangers Unsung Hero. I thought he, and partner John Moore, were both pretty solid in their own end, denying the Islanders good looks, and pretty efficently getting the puck out of their own end of the ice. Falk blocked a team-high three shots, and was not on ice for any of the Isles five goals; and he was just plain solid through 12:44 of ice time. I would have liked to see him get more involved physically Friday, but he has been good in that aspect of the game for much of the season.