GREENBURGH, N.Y. -- Now, Rangers defenseman Marc Staal said, "the cat-and-mouse begins. We make adjustments; they make adjustments."
After the Rangers took Thursday night's opener of the best-of-seven Eastern Conference first-round series from the Flyers, 4-1, with three third-period goals, most players rested Friday to recharge for Game 2 at Madison Square Garden on Sunday.
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For the Flyers, the major change could be that No. 1 goaltender Steve Mason, who sat out Game 1 while recovering from a neck or head injury, is healthy and available.
"I'll try my best," Mason told reporters after taking shots at Chelsea Piers rink. "I felt pretty good for being on the ice for the first time in a couple days. It was a good step. I felt great movement-wise."
Playing is "definitely my goal," said Mason, who is expected to have a full practice Saturday, after which coach Craig Berube will decide if Mason or Ray Emery will start.
Regardless of who's in net, "we have to expect a hungrier team," said Brian Boyle, the right wing on the fourth line that bottled up the Flyers' top trio of Claude Giroux, Scott Hartnell and Jakub Voracek. "We need to match that. After two periods, it was still a tight game [1-1] in the third period.''
Rangers coach Alain Vigneault declined to discuss what adjustments he expects from Berube.
"You're going to have to ask them," Vigneault said. "They'll do what they do. They had been very upfront in how they were going to play, and they lived up to their billing. There was some chippiness, a lot of slashing going on. We're going to play whistle to whistle and we're going to get out of there when the whistle blows."
Derek Dorsett said the Rangers will play the same way. "We're not going to be intimidated by them," he said. "We can't shy away. We have to go right back at them . . . We had some energy, just got pucks deep, we crashed the net and had a number of opportunities. Maybe going forward we can put one in."
Vigneault said the fourth line, which includes center Dom Moore, "plays to their strength; they're honest, hard-working players. You have to be able to spread the minutes out if you want to play a good tempo game. Teams that have had success on a pretty regular basis, I'm thinking about the Bruins right now, play four lines."
Notes & quotes: It appears that rookie right wing Jesper Fast (one assist) will make his second playoff start. "Other than one situation defensively, where I thought he could've been better on the boards, he skated well, finished his checks and made a nice play on the fourth goal," Vigneault said . . . The Rangers have fared well in two 12:30 p.m. starts, blanking the Red Wings, 3-0, on March 9 and beating the Devils, 7-3, at Yankee Stadium on Jan. 26. Regarding the change in routine, Vigneault said, "I'm not overly concerned."