Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Sadness! Rangers Fall to Caps 1-0, Trail 2-1 in Series

These are troubled times in Ranger land.

The team played hard – with energy – with grit – with determination.  They defended well.  They attacked as best they could.  They moved the puck and fought hard in the corners.  They outshot the Caps 30-22. 

I thought the thing about this years's team is that - finally - we had a Ranger team that could score.  But last night we couldn’t score – could not beat Branden Holtby – and a single lucky goal was all the Capitals needed to take a 2-1 series lead.

The goal came at 7:21 in the second as Jay Beagle (who?) shooting from an impossible angle somehow banked the puck off of Keith Yandle and past Lundqvist inside the right post.

That made it 1-0 and that was all Washington needed.

What we’re facing now is a hot team with a hot goalie who believe in themselves.  And we now have to win 3 of 4 to win this series. 

Hank saved .955 of the shots that came his way – usually that is enough to win – even in the playoffs.  But not Monday night.

Game 4 on Wednesday is now a huge one. Win and the Ranger tie the series and regain home ice advantage.  Lose and the Caps go up 3-1 and are on the brink of advancing to the next round. 

As always – when we lose people will blame the power play for not scoring and the lack of faceoff wins.  But we had trouble with both of those areas even on our huge win streak – so I don’t think the problem is there.  And I guess we have to look at Rick Nash who has not scored on the Capitals and had 7 shots last night with over 19 minutes of ice time. 

This team does miss Mats Zuccarello – but in all probability he is out for a long time with a concussion. 

But what we really need is a goal.  One goal and Holtby begins to second guess himself.  One goal and the Rangers get faster and the Capitals begin to sweat.  We just need a goal.

What Did We Learn?  That the Rangers are in a fight for their playoff lives.

Uh, a little help?:   No assists for anyone. 

Did Special Teams Determine The Outcome Of This Game?  Yes and no.  No because we were a perfect 2 for 2 on the PK.  And Yes, unfortunately, because we couldn’t score on 2 power plays of our own.

Where Do We Stand?  Trailing 2-1 in round 2.

Oh My - What Will Happen Next?  Wednesday night in DC.

Non-Sequitur of the day: Fred Shero is now GM of the Devils?

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