John Tortorella didn’t say much this afternoon in a conference call with reporters, but don’t take that as a lack of confidence for Game 7.
“I have a ton of optimism about our club,” Tortorella said. “Our club has gone through a lot of different things as far as momentum.”
As our buddy Carp is wont to remind us of, momentum is a figment in the NHL playoffs. For the Rangers, the season has been more about dogged consistency than sustaining — or reversing — momentum. They lost two straight just six times all season, including Games 4 and 5 against Ottawa in the first round. Only once did the streak extend to three.
Tortorella wouldn’t discuss much else, namely what his club had in mind to awaken a sleepy offense. “We’ve discussed that as a team,” he said (actually twice). “We’ll keep that in the locker room.”
Chris Kreider had provided a boost, but he’s been relegated to the fourth line after defensive struggles in Games 3 and 4. Could he return to an increased role in Game 7? You’ll have to wait until Saturday night to find out, of course.
“He’s a young man trying to learn the game,” Tortorella said about Kreider’s defensive adjustment. “I think he’s improving and we’ll see where it goes.”
For the rest (and there isn’t much), check out the audio below.
The team returns to the ice for practice at 11 tomorrow morning.