ANOTHER GAME-WINNER FOR RANGERS’ RICHARDS
Brad Richards tallied the game-winning goal in the Rangers win, breaking a 2-2 tie at 5:21 of the third period. Richards scored his sixth game-winner of the season, tops on the Rangers and second in the NHL behind Detroit’s Johan Franzen (seven).
RANGERS’ RUPP SAVES BEST FOR BIG STAGE
Rangers forward Mike Rupp scored a pair of goals, his first multi-goal game since Nov. 30, 2009, a span of 166 regular- season and playoff games. He tallied his fifth career multi-goal game in 555 career NHL appearances (regular-season and playoffs). Rupp has a knack for starring on the League’s biggest stages: as a rookie he tallied the Stanley Cup-winning goal and added a pair of assists for the New Jersey Devils in a 3-0 win over Anaheim in Game 7 of the 2003 Stanley Cup Final.
Rupp, Brandon Prust (two assists) and John Mitchell (two assists) combined for six points (2-4–6) and a +6 rating in today’s game.
LUNDQVIST PRESERVES VICTORY WITH LAST-MINUTE PENALTY-SHOT SAVE
Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist faced his 10th career regular-season penalty shot in stopping Philadelphia’s Daniel Briere with 20 seconds remaining in the third period to preserve the victory. It marked the first penalty shot in a Winter Classic game.
Lundqvist improved his career penalty-shot save percentage to .700 (seven stops on 10 attempts). Briere now is one-for-three on regular-season penalty shots.
ANOTHER MILESTONE FLYER GOAL IN WINTER CLASSIC
Flyers rookie forward Brayden Schenn opened the scoring at 12:26 of the second period with his first career NHL goal. The Flyers’ goal in their previous Winter Classic appearance, a 2-1 overtime loss to the Boston Bruins at Fenway Park on Jan. 1, 2010, also came from a player scoring his first NHL tally — defenseman Danny Syvret.
One year ago today, on January 2, 2011, Schenn tallied a pair of assists for Team Canada in a 4-1 win over Switzerland in the quarter-finals of the 2011 IIHF World Junior Championships in Buffalo.
RANGERS MATCH BIGGEST WINTER CLASSIC COMEBACK
The Rangers became the second team to overcome a two-goal deficit to win a Winter Classic game. The Detroit Red Wings came back from a 3-1 deficit to defeat the Chicago Blackhawks 6-4 in the 2009 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic at Wrigley Field in Chicago.
SCORING FIRST NOT AN ADVANTAGE IN WINTER CLASSIC
The team scoring first lost the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic for the fourth consecutive year.
Year Venue Scoring First Winter Classic Winner Score
2009 Wrigley Field, Chicago Chicago Detroit 6-4
2010 Fenway Park, Boston Philadelphia Boston 2-1 (OT)
2011 Heinz Field, Pittsburgh Pittsburgh Washington 3-1
2012 Citizens Bank Park, Phil. Philadelphia NY Rangers 3-2
HOME ICE NOT AN ADVANTAGE IN WINTER CLASSIC
The team hosting the Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic has won just once in five games:
Year Venue Winter Classic Winner Score
2008 Ralph Wilson Stadium, Buffalo Pittsburgh 2-1 (SO)
2009 Wrigley Field, Chicago Detroit 6-4
2010 Fenway Park, Boston Boston 2-1 (OT)
2011 Heinz Field, Pittsburgh Washington 3-1
2012 Citizens Bank Park, Philadelphia NY Rangers 3-2
RANGERS’ STAAL MAKES SEASON DEBUT
Rangers defenseman Marc Staal made his 2011-12 season debut today, recording one hit and a +1 rating in 12:41 of ice time. Staal missed the first 36 games of the season with a concussion. One of Marc’s younger brothers, Pittsburgh Penguins center Jordan Staal, made his 2010-11 season debut in last year’s Winter Classic against the Washington Capitals at Heinz Field in Pittsburgh after missing the first 39 Penguins’ games with foot and hand injuries.
RANGERS TAKE FIRST PLACE IN NHL OVERALL STANDINGS
With their victory in the 2012 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic, the Rangers (24-9-4, 52 points) moved into first place in the NHL’s overall standings. The Chicago Blackhawks, also with 52 points, host the Edmonton Oilers tonight. This is the latest the Rangers have been in first place of the Eastern Conference standings since the 1995-96 season, when New York held the top position through games played on Mar. 15, 1996 (Elias Sports Bureau).
WINTER CLASSIC ATTENDANCE SURPASSES QUARTER-MILLION
The crowd of 46,967 that packed Citizens Bank Park today pushed total attendance at the five NHL Winter Classics past the quarter-million mark.
Year Venue Attendance
2008 Ralph Wilson Stadium, Buffalo (vs. Pit) 71,217
2009 Wrigley Field, Chicago (vs. Det) 40,818
2010 Fenway Park, Boston (vs. Phi) 38,112
2011 Heinz Field, Pittsburgh (vs. Wsh) 68,111
2012 Citizens Bank Park, Philadelphia (vs. NYR) 46,967
WINTER CLASSIC HIT PARADE
The Rangers and Flyers combined to post 91 hits in today’s game (Rangers 50, Flyers 41), the most in a Winter Classic game. Philadelphia’s Scott Hartnell led all players with 13 to set an individual Winter Classic mark.
TODAY’S WINTER CLASSIC WEATHER: SEASONAL
The temperature at Citizens Bank Park at puck drop — 41 degrees Fahrenheit / 5 degrees Celsius — matches the average high temperature for January 2 in Philadelphia, according to multiple online weather services. A recap of weather at the start of each NHL Winter Classic:
2008 NHL Winter Classic
33°F /1°C, flurries – Jan. 1, 2008 at Ralph Wilson Stadium, Buffalo.
Pittsburgh Penguins 2, Buffalo Sabres 1 (SO).
2009 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic
32°F /0°C, overcast, swirling wind – Jan. 1, 2009 at Wrigley Field, Chicago.
Detroit Red Wings 6, Chicago Blackhawks 4.
2010 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic
39°F/4°C, overcast – Jan. 1, 2010 at Fenway Park, Boston.
Boston Bruins 2, Philadelphia Flyers 1 (OT).
2011 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic
51°F/10°C, overcast, light rain – Jan. 1, 2011 at Heinz Field, Pittsburgh.
Washington Capitals 3, Pittsburgh Penguins 1.
2012 Bridgestone NHL Winter Classic
41°F/5°C, partly cloudy – Jan. 2, 2012 at Citizens Bank Park, Philadelphia.
New York Rangers 3, Philadelphia Flyers 2.