Sunday, May 10, 2015

Ranger Refuse To Die - overcome late deficit to win game 5 and Stay Alive!

And that my friend is playoff win number 6.  We’re just 10 from hoisting the cup.  Believe!

Adversity.  We all face it in our lives.  And the Rangers faced it Friday and they face it now.

But what Adversity creates is the chance for greatness.  And on Friday night the Rangers achieved greatness.  They were down 3-1 in the series and 1-0 in the hockey game.  The scoreboard read less than 2 minutes in their hockey season. 

But your New York Rangers refused to die.  Not today.  Not this night.

As Lundqvist headed off for the extra skater – Derek Stepan carried the puck up the left side boards.  He stopped and fed a streaking Chris Kreider.  Little Old Marty St. Louis screened Hotlby as best as the little guy can and Kreider let loose a howitzer shot that changed the world.

Boom.  Into the net.  Score.  We were 101 seconds from over and now the Hockey season lived on.  Kreider – the 24 year old with the size – the speed – the skill – and the talent to be whatever he wants to be in this league. 

And into the locker room go the Caps – wondering what just happened.  They thought the series was over.  They we’re thinking about round 3.  Because like the monster in every monster movie since time began – the Rangers would not die.   

And ten minutes into overtime Jesper Fast stole the puck in the neutral zone and got it to Derek Stepan.  Derek has the poise to look at two Caps drop to their knees to block the shot and calmly – deceptively – slid the puck backwards to the Captain Ryan McDonagh.  Ryan stepped forward and shot.  And we got maybe our first lucky bounce of the series.  The puck hit a defenseman’s skate and beat the unbeatable Holtby. 

Boom again.  It was 2-1.  Game over.  Rangers win and the series is now 3-2.

The Rangers now are 9-0 in consecutive home must win games.  That’s an NHL record.  And I don’t think any other team will ever be able to do this again.  But your Rangers did it and it was amazing.  It’s an achievement to be one of the last 7 teams standing. 

And on Sunday – in Washington – we have it all over again.  Adversity – a road must win game.  And a chance again for greatness.

Oh and Lundqvist?  He never did get off the ice.  The Kreider goal sent him right back to the crease – where he was perfect for the remaining regulation and OT – finishing the night with a .966 save percentage.

What Did We Learn?  That for one great night – the Rangers refused to die

Uh, a little help?:   Two huge assists for Derek Stepan.  One each for Fast and Yandle. 

Did Special Teams Determine The Outcome Of This Game?  Both teams 0-2 on the powerplay. 

Where Do We Stand?  Trailing 3-2 in round 2 – but damn it – still breathing.  Ten wins from Lord Stanley’s Cup. 

Oh My - What Will Happen Next?  Sunday in DC.  Win to keep the dream alive.   Win to take it back home for game 7.  Win to achieve greatness.

Non-Sequitur of the day: I will have my lucky Stepan Matteau hat on and will be clutching my Sean Avery pin.  And anything you did Friday that worked – do it again tonight.  In the name of Jean Ratelle we respectfully implore the Hockey Gods – hear our humble plea – help the Rangers get back to 3-3.

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