How far will the Rangers get this season?

The Blueshirts Try To Break Their Losing Streak Tomorrow In Detroit
Is it time to panic?

The Rangers need Hank to carry them

The Rangers need Hank to carry them

Rangers @ Red Wings

Joe Louis Arena, 7:30 Monday night

Rangers record: 29-22-4

Red Wings record: 31-15-6


Coach John Tortorella might be calm about the Rangers four-game losing streak, but a growing sense of dread has taken hold of the Rangers fan base.

After a memorable first half, the hard-working Rangers have struggled to find positive results lately, and the problems with the team have become even more glaring.  The effort is still there, but the bounces are no longer going the Blueshirts’ way.  Making matters worse, Henrik Lundqvist has been shaky at best since the All Star break, Marian Gaborik’s offense is still non-existent, and the power play has been completely ineffective.  New York has fallen into seventh place in the Eastern Conference and is now only four points ahead of the ninth place Atlanta Thrashers.  Worse still, the Rangers have a brutal schedule this month with very few “gimme” games.

It will take the handful of Rangers that just returned from injury a couple weeks to re-find their rhythms, but they haven’t been the problem.  Perhaps this is just a stretch of adversity for a team that saw most things go its way through the first 40 games of the year on the ice, but the issues facing this team may not be so easy to fix.  Gaborik has shown few signs of life and the power play has been a season-long issue.  The Rangers are so desperate to fix it that they’ve reportedly been scouting Sheldon Souray.

The biggest thing that can help is for Lundqvist to break out of his rut.  He’ll likely return to form shortly, but the soft goals he’s given up all year has been a major problem for the team.  While the Rangers struggle to convert offensively, they need their goalie at the top of his game more than ever.  Lundqvist hasn’t been depended upon this year as much as in the past, but now’s the time that he needs to step up and carry the team as he has in the past.

None of these problems will be easily solved against the Detroit Red Wings tomorrow night.  The collection of veterans seems like it should have fallen off by now, but every year Detroit is at or near the top of the Western Conference standings.  This year is no different, as the Red Wings are second in the West despite losing two games in a row.  The crew of Pavel Datsyuk, Henrik Zetterberg, Johan Franzen, and company continue to produce offensively, but the Red Wings have received poor goaltending from Jimmy Howard lately.  If the Rangers are to beat the Wings, they’ll need to take advantage of the Red Wing’ weak netminder.  If not, Detroit will have no problem extending the Rangers’ losing streak to five games, and panic time may truly be upon us.  

Posted by Kevin Baumer | February 6, 2011 at 01:41 pm

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New York Rangers VS Chicago Blackhawks
Wednesday, October 7, 2015

  1 2 3 OT F
Rangers 3 0 0 - 3
Blackhawks 1 1 0 - 2

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