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Rangers-Hurricanes in review

Posted By Carp On March 19, 2013 @ 5:33 am In Hockey,Lockout,New York Rangers,NHL,Rangers Report | 270 Comments

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Thoughts:

1) I know I’ve said this before, and honestly, I’m not complaining about the shootout (this time). But it’s kind of silly, isn’t it, that the exact same hockey game for 65 minutes gets played, and if Alex Semin’s shot doesn’t hit the crossbar, or if J.T. Miller continues to fumble the puck into the corner, or whatever, and Carolina gets one more shootout goal, everybody feels 180 degrees differently about how that actual, you know, hockey game went.

2) Bottom line: Rangers scored one goal again, that’s three in the last four games. Problem? You betcha it is. [2]

3) Other bottom line, and more crucial: They got two points, and in this stupid league where almost every game has been a three-pointer while the Rangers were getting none, two points is two points is two points. There are 40 still on the table.

4) I’ll link to my column later, when I get up around the crack of noon, but I really was beginning to wonder about the hot seat under John Tortorella. Not that I believe anybody around the team would consider such a drastic move after a small sample like five games, especially after going 5-1 in the previous six. But I wondered how much pressure would be exerted by all the enemies he’s made in the media and in the stands.

5) And I sure think he deserves some of the blame for what has gone down, but this lineup is flawed, flawed, flawed unless Brad Richards and Marian Gaborik suddenly rediscover again how to be first-line, productive players.

[3]6) That big line had some chances last night, but at times they were a nightmare in their own end. And again they were outplayed by the second line of Carl Hagelin, Derek Stepan and Ryan Callahan, who not only scored the only goal, but who got it done most shifts. And the third line, too, thanks to the kid J.T. Miller, chipped in with some strong shifts, particularly in the second when the game turned in the Rangers favor … at least territorially.

7) Of course, Ryan Callahan had to clobber the goalie for the Rangers to score a goal at all. Lucky he didn’t get called for that. Not saying it was or wasn’t goalie interference, but we’ve seen all this year and last how haphazardly that penalty is called or not called.

8) The penalty on Eric Staal against Henrik Lundqvist, for example: Pansification.

9) I thought Ryan McDonagh still had some tough moments, and some really terrific ones. It’s just that I expect the terrific ones and not the bad ones. I’ve come to expect his game to be much more level.

[4]10) With all the cool stuff Rick Nash does with the puck, and with the speed and size and shot and the hands that he has, how does he not score more goals? How is he not a perennial 45+ guy? As you may know, I am not a fan of the Breakaway Contest. But that was a pretty cool goal Nash scored.

11) Good to see Marc Staal in the house. There were some former Rangers luminaries there, too, including Petr Popovic, Jari Kurri, Don Maloney, Glenn Anderson, Bobby Sanguinetti, John MacLean and Jack Birch, who was Ted Sator’s assistant coach.

12) Here’s what somebody inside the team told me about Miller taking that penalty shot: “I guarantee you his heart rate didn’t even change.”

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My Three Rangers Stars: [5]
1. Derek Stepan.
2. Henrik Lundqvist.
3. J.T. Miller.
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RangerJHW’s Three Rangers Stars:
1. Cally-never quits
2. Stepan-solid effort
3. Lundqvist-of course….
Hon Men: Del Z…keep it up!
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Your poll vote for Three Rangers Stars:
1. Henrik Lundqvist (21.56 %).
2. Derek Stepan (15.6 %).
3. Michael Del Zotto (13.76 %).

Photos by the Associated Press.


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[1] Image: http://rangers.lohudblogs.com/files/2013/03/miller-shootout-vs.-car.1.jpg

[2] Image: http://rangers.lohudblogs.com/files/2013/03/stepan-goal-vs.-Canes.jpg

[3] Image: http://rangers.lohudblogs.com/files/2013/03/hagelin-vs.-canes.jpg

[4] Image: http://rangers.lohudblogs.com/files/2013/03/nash-shootout-vs.-Car..jpg

[5] Image: http://rangers.lohudblogs.com/files/2013/03/lundqvist-beaten-by-e.-staal.jpg