Torts thinks highly of Biron

Martin Biron of the New York Rangers makes

Martin Biron of the New York Rangers makes a glove save against the San Jose Sharks on Monday at Madison Square Garden in New York. (Oct. 31, 2011) (Credit: Jim McIsaac)

BUFFALO -- Rangers coach John Tortorella was not just being nice to Martin Biron Saturday by starting him in goal in the city in which Biron played nine of his previous 13 NHL seasons.

The 4-1 victory came in only the sixth start of this season for Biron, his last before this a 5-3 victory at Carolina on Dec. 1. And the start had nothing to do with either the site or the fact that the Rangers have the second of back-to-back games Sunday night at Madison Square Garden against Florida.

"We don't get too far ahead ," Tortorella said. "But we feel we have a really good backup.

"I don't even want to call [Biron] a backup. He's played very well. He's going to play some games. We decided this is one he's going to play."

Biron, 34, in his second Rangers season, entered the game with a 4-1-0 record and a goals-against average (1.94) and save percentage (.930) that were slightly better than Lundqvist's.

"The greatest thing about Marty," Tortorella said, "is he's such a great teammate. He keeps the room loose. He's a veteran guy that understands his role, which is very important. And he's won games. Look at his record since he's been with us. It's too bad he got hurt last year ; he would've played more. Everything about him has been good for this organization. His personality, being a teammate, and how he's played on the ice."

The goalie acknowledged having good memories and good friends left in Buffalo. Said Biron, "Some of the teammates I played with and -- I don't want to say some of the parties, because I'm not a big party guy -- but some of the parties were pretty good."

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