Friday, February 27, 2009
In a game that was very similar to the night before against Toronto, the New York Rangers looked like the faster team, more physical team, and the team that dominated in scoring chances. Unfortunately, the last thing, scoring chances is what did them in. The Rangers lost to the Florida Panthers by a score of 2-1 in a very critical game considering how tenuous the playoff hopes of the Blueshirts are right now.
David Booth and Nathan Horton scored for the Panthers exactly one minute apart to seal the deal in favor of Florida. Where do we start? The Rangers were, in my eyes, the much better team in most aspects of the game. Hustling, skating, hitting, all around effort, and shots (41 to 22 in favor of the Rangers). You would think that would make it an easy victory for the boys, but this is the Rangers - the team that's snake bitten and simply can't score.
I don't know what to say anymore. The chances are there, but the goals are not. Can we place blame on Lundqvist for allowing that soft goal on David Booth's backhand, or Scott Gomez chasing Zednik around the net while leaving his man (Horton) wide open in front of the net? Sure we can. But mistakes are what hockey's all about and if the Rangers could have found the net a couple of more times - the mistakes would be a moot point. The PP obviously still needs some major work as well. 49 seconds with a 2-Man Advantage while leading 1-0 is a chance to bury the opposition. Instead of extending the lead, the Rangers left the Panthers with a chance to hang around in the game.
It's a tough time for the Rangers right now and the players are feeling the pressure as well. With the trade deadline coming up, will some things happen? I don't believe this team can stand pat. Something needs to be done, and that's for sure.
I will be away in Boston this weekend doing some more games for the Quinnipiac Bobcats (against Harvard and Dartmouth). If you are interested in listening, the link is littered throughout previous posts and check in around 7PM EST. I will answer any comments when I get back! Over and out!