How far will the Rangers get this season?

One Game At A Time
Game 5 Preview and Vezina Trophy Finalists Announced

Snubbed from the Vezina, but still the Rangers best chance for victory

Snubbed from the Vezina, but still the Rangers best chance for victory

As disheartening as Wednesday’s Game Four double overtime loss was, the Rangers must put it behind them and try to close the gap to 3-2 tomorrow afternoon in Washington.

Outwardly, the team has remained upbeat, but it’s tough to say what the real mood in the locker room is like.  The Blueshirts know that they could easily be tied 2-2 in this series, or even up 3-1, but that’s obviously not the case.  Nevertheless, the team has shown that it is more than capable of playing with Washington, and if things start breaking the Rangers’ way, the series might not be over just yet.

The inept power play is the most obvious aspect of New York’s game that must change.  With just one goal in the series, the Rangers’ man advantage has been actually quite a disadvantage.  It’s no secret that the Capitals are the far more talented team, so the Rangers must generate goals from their special team opportunities.  So far, that hasn’t happened and not coincidentally, the Rangers have lost by one goal twice and two goals once.  Facing an elimination game, the Rangers’ margin for error is even slimmer, so the Blueshirts had better figure out a way to capitalize on their power play opportunities.

We all know how this series has gone, and it’s very understandable to be frustrated.  But if the Blueshirts can play as well as they did in the previous two, and maybe three games, they could well end up with a W tomorrow.  The key will be for the team to come out loose and not worry about the past.  If New York plays its game and doesn’t worry about the series score, the Rangers have proven that they have what it takes to keep up with Washington.  But if the crushing Game Four loss is still lodged in their heads, the season could be over tomorrow evening.


 - The Vezina Trophy finalists were revealed this afternoon.  Roberto Luongo, Tim Thomas, and Pekka Rinne were selected, with Henrik Lundqvist and Cary Price the snubs.  Lundqvist probably wouldn’t have won the award, but he could make a pretty good case for being a better choice than any of the three finalists.  Thomas made 12 fewer starts than Lundqvist and had Zdeno Chara in front of him. Luongo played for the best team in the league in the standings and defensively, and the Canucks didn’t miss a beat when Cory Schneider was between the pipes.  Rinne was asked to carry his offensively inept team in much the same way as Lundqvist, but Rinne has Shea Weber and Ryan Suter in front of him.  Lundqvist has two rookies as his third and fourth defensemen, a pitiful offense, and he had to carry the team by himself down the stretch after Martin Biron got hurt.  Hank’s stats aren’t quite on par with the finalists, but all that extra stuff should factor in as well.


Posted by Kevin Baumer | April 22, 2011 at 02:11 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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