Who Wins the 2014 Stanley Cup?

New York Rangers

Los Angeles Kings














Game III
Rangers make it a series with a win at the Garden


Stepanís late goal gives the Rangers a much needed win


Stepanís late goal gives the Rangers a much needed win

The saying goes “you’re not in trouble until you lose a game on home ice”. And with that, Ranger fans, the Rangers are back in this series. The Rangers entered this series being in a 2-0 hole. A 2-0 hole they dug themselves with squandered opportunities. After being shut out, the Rangers came back and battled to a 4-3 win over the Washington Capitals. They did it at home and they did it playing New York hockey.

Firstly, let me say this: It’s a Power Play Goal!
Yes, the unthinkable happened. The Rangers scored a power play goal and had another goal that off a rush that started during the power play. The Rangers took advantage of their opportunities and made the Capitals pay. One of the biggest issues the Rangers needed to address was the inept power play that had multiple chances to put the game away Saturday but came up short. They worked on it and they finally connected. This is a huge boost and something that can completely turn around the series in the Blueshirts’ favor.

This win took everyone up and down the lines to pull off. Every single type of player had to contribute. Down 1-0 early, this team rallied back and had to break three ties in order to win. Lundqvist stood tall and played great hockey. He let in a tip in from Backstrom, a wrister from Green that threaded all sorts of needles, and a flukey goal that deflected off a few players. None were easy saves for Lundqvist and the defense in front of him was stellar.

Not to look a win in the mouth (so to speak), but the Rangers did not play a flawless game. There were long stretches were the Caps had the Rangers absolutely pinned in their own zone. They had to weather several storms while the Caps did their best impression of a team on a power play without actually having the man advantage. There was even a time when the Caps were able to pull a line change without having the puck cross the Rangers blue line. This team is wayyy too dangerous for that to happen. It would be nice to win a game without Lundqvist absolutely robbing a few guys; and in order to do that, the Rangers need to get the puck on the other end of the ice.

And the song continues, but the Rangers’ big guns have to start scoring. I refuse to understand that Nash is not mentally prepped for this because he has only played 4 playoff games prior to now. He’s been in the league since 2002. It is time to grow up and play hockey when it matters most. Richards is still showing flashes of what he was but clearly is not the man we brought him in for. Richards had some good shots from the point on the power play resulted in some great scoring chances. But he also was responsible for making every single Rangers’ fan stop breathing by taking a dumb penalty and slashed Ovechkin at 18:06 of the third. They had less than two minutes to go and he gave them a 6-on-4 power play for the last moments of the game!
Speaking of leaders taking weak penalties, Ryan Callahan needs to become the leader we have seen him be for years (even before he had the “C” stitched on the sweater). He took two minor penalties and none of them were effective. Both of them were the product of frustration or letting someone get a step on him. He needs to get back to play Callahan hockey. He needs to get back to blocking shots in his own zone and blocking out the sun in front of Holtby.

A win is a win and this was a good one for the good guys. The Rangers have made this a series worth watching and one worth winning.

 

-Dan French

 

*Photo credit goes to nytimes.com

 

For more by Dan French, be sure to visit www.liftthepuck.com

Posted by Will Wagner | May 8, 2013 at 05:06 am
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New York Rangers VS Philadelphia Flyers
Friday, November 28, 2014

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








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