Michael Ryder Easily Fits Back in with Montreal Canadiens
Ryder came back to le Tricolor on Feb. 26 and was inserted into the lineup the very next day against the Toronto Maple Leafs. Sure, it took him two games to get readjusted and get on the score sheet, but he chose an interesting game to put up his first point with the Canadiens again: the team’s most recent match with their arch-rival Boston Bruins–which is, of course, the team where Ryder won the Stanley Cup two years ago.
He put up an assist in that game, but then really heated up in the Habs’ 6-3 loss to the New York Islanders, the second stop on the team’s five-game road trip. Though they lost, Ryder assisted on every single one of Montreal’s goals for a three-point occasion.
After going cold again when facing the Carolina Hurricanes, he heated right back up again in a big matchup with the Tampa Bay Lightning, assisting on the game-tying goal that got the Habs fully and totally out of a three-goal hole. He also helped captain Brian Gionta bring the team within one.
But it was against the other Floridian team, the Florida Panthers, where he really stood out and got his first two goals back in the bleu, blanc et rouge. Both of his goals were scored on the power play at two different times–the first period and late in the third–and he assisted to make the game a 4-0 Montreal lead near the end of the second.
He also took over the team’s iron man streak–currently at 113 games–when Brandon Prust had to be absent due to an injury.
From the looks of it, Ryder is fitting back in with the Habs without much of a problem. It remains to be seen if he can keep up this production and help the Habs make last season even more of an aberration, though.