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Two early defensive mistakes cost Rangers

Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

The Anaheim Ducks were in town tonight as the Rangers were looking to get redemption after being embarrassed in their first matchup last month. The Rangers played a much better game this time around, but they couldn’t solve the Ducks defense en route to a 2-1 loss. New York had two key defensive zone gaffes that led to a pair of first period goals for Anaheim, and after that they shut it down and didn’t allow the Rangers to generate any offense at all.

In a bit of an ironic twist, the Rangers were victimized initially by the Ducks 2-1-2 forecheck, causing turnovers galore as the Rangers adjusted to playing an actual NHL caliber team. Then they were victimized by the low zone collapse as they struggled to get shots through the Ducks once they had the lead. Those systems should sound very familiar.

Anyway, on to the goals:

Ducks 1, Rangers 0

So, I guess Perry is invisible?

So, I guess Perry is invisible?

The Rangers got some bad luck when they cleared the zone, as the puck hit the changing Ducks with too many men on the ice. No penalty was called, and the puck was sent right back into the zone. Derick Brassard made a relatively terrible pass from the corner to the opposite point, through the middle. With that pass and the subsequent turnover, the Rangers coverage was completely blown. Brassard and Brian Boyle go to Ryan Getzlaf while Dan Girardi and Ryan McDonagh are on the same side heading towards Dustin Penner. No one picked up Corey Perry, who had so much time that he could take three whacks at it.

Ducks 2, Rangers 0

Swivel head?

Swivel head?

Brad Richards kick started this with an awful backhanded pass to Carl Hagelin that was easily picked off by Francois Beauchemin. As the Rangers transitioned to defense, Michael Del Zotto took a very wide turn (photo above), and never swivel-headed to see Kyle Palmieri behind him. For some reason, all four Rangers went to Beauchemin and Nick Bonino. No one picked up Palmieri (photo below). He had all day to grip it and rip it.

Four Rangers, two Ducks, one off screen.

Four Rangers, two Ducks, one off screen.

Rangers 1, Ducks 2

Four Ducks, no one turns around.

Four Ducks, no one turns around.

After an offensive zone face off win, the Rangers got the puck deep behind the net, where John Moore made a good pinch to keep the puck deep. It eventually winds up near the goal mouth with four Ducks, backs turned, watching the puck and swatting at it while Frederik Andersson was trying to cover the puck. It looked like one of the Ducks actually swatted the puck out of the crease, where Del Zotto was waiting for it after moving in from the point.

Fenwick Chart:

Courtesy of ExtraSkater.

Courtesy of ExtraSkater.

From the Fenwick chart, we can see that the Rangers didn’t really play a poor game and weren’t dominated. They actually generated more offensive chances than the Ducks. The problem was that the Ducks capitalized on the Rangers turnovers, while the Rangers couldn’t capitalize on the Ducks turnovers.

One loss after three wins in a row isn’t something to panic about, especially when the team wasn’t outplayed by any stretch. Losses happen.

The Rangers have the Penguins next. It’s too early for must-wins, but a win against the Pens shows that this is a club that can beat the good teams as well as the bad.

"Two early defensive mistakes cost Rangers", 3 out of 5 based on 4 ratings.

33 Responses to “Two early defensive mistakes cost Rangers”

  1. Mr. Snrub says:

    Play like this against Marc-Andre Fivehole and we’ll win convincingly.

  2. BobM says:

    “One loss after three wins in a row isn’t something to panic about”

    I would agree with this statement if we lost every fourth game after winning the first three and had a .750% average.

    The problem is that our losing record is 6-8 with a .429% average.

    A loss is a loss is a loss, be it 2-1 or 15-14. At least in a 15-14 game, you know that your team can score some goals. We have given up 14 more goals than we have scored in 14 games, so we will statistically lose every game by at least one goal.

    This team cannot score, period. Only Hagelin, Kreider and Zuccarello have positive plus/minus numbers. Marc Staal is -11.

    So how do you like this new offensive system so far?

    • Chris F says:

      Anderson played a phenomenal game. Rangers didn’t have alot of sustained pressure but they had some great chances. Anderson was the star of the game –along with Lundqvist.

      • agentsmith says:

        chris – wht game were u watching? anderson did nothing the first half of the game? a couple stops late does not mean he was the star of the game. our offense as whole was hideous. 33 shots but how many SCORING chances? 3 maybe 4. how do i know? i was at the game.

        but i understand the western teams are just in a dif league. luckily were not in the west.

        • Chris F says:

          You were at the game. I watched the game, complete with replays and rewind. Andersen made some great stops. Even Palmieri said after the game that Andersen kept them in the game (bit of an exxaggeration I think but you get the point). I understand there wasnt alot of sustained pressure, but the chances were there tonight.

    • Centerman21 says:

      Everyone had to call for Torts to be fired. No one thinks of the downside of starting over with a new coach. I’m mad too but love the Torts haters right now. They make my day a little brighter.

      • evan says:

        Im glad you are taking pleasure in the Rangers losing. Torts is gone. Get over it. If your day is going to get brightened by us losing then stop following the team.

        Not sure who should be mad after last night. Excellent performance and massive improvements. Not happy about the turnovers that led to the goals, but these things happen.

        Just to remind you centerman21, the rangers went 16-15-1 with hagelin, callahan, gaborik, richards, nash (missed 3 games) and stepan ALL healthy with torts last year. I think that made me far more mad than anything. If torts was coach of this team with this many injuries, I do not even want to imagine how far down the standings we would be. AV has done an incredible job given the personnel issues he has faced and we keep getting better with each game.

        Everyone wanted to see if our performances last week were due to us just beating bad teams, well last night improved they were not flukes. We were right there the whole game.

        • Walt says:

          Way to give it to him, agree!!!!

          • Centerman21 says:

            Where did I say I’m happy they lost? No where so you just fed your alterior motives. Fair enough. I’m the guy people love to hate and I love it. You’d hate me more if you could understand English and read it.

            • Walt says:

              Stay mad, this from a Torts disliker, never hated the guy!! All the readers who disagree with you are either stupid, haters, or can’t read. Do you see a pattern developing here?? Your a dip stick!

  3. Bloomer says:

    I hate to say it, but the Rangers are going to have to dress a goon. Too any liberties on their players going unanswered.

    We all love Lundquist and all he has done for the team. But the performance by Frederik Andersen
    tonight goes to show you that a team doesn’t have to spent 8 million dollars a year for 8 years to get world class goaltending. The Ranger team needs help up front. They will never get that help if all their cap space is tied up in goal.

    • evan says:

      Couldnt agree with you more. I really hate goons in the NHL. However, if the refs are not going to police it, teams are going to keep taking head shots. How do BOTH stepan head shots go uncalled for?

      To your point about henrik, the most i would offer is a 6 year 48 and that is already generous. As you stated, that is a lot of cap to go to your goalie. I do believe the cap number is going to go up big, so we could probably afford to give hank a slight raise and then still load up our offense.

      However, the Nash situation makes it very difficult for us to have success. I firmly believe the current squad will make the playoffs, but we cannot win a cup without Nash. Our division is very weak and performances like tonight are going to get us points more often than not. Super unlucky not to get a point tonight.

      With that said, this was the tweet today from Aaron Portzline, the beat writer from the Blue Jackets who I believe became good friends with Nash:

      “To my knowledge, Rick Nash has only one confirmed concussion in his time with CBJ. Hes in a bad way right now with NYR. Scary stuff”

      Safe to say that tonight is going to be the best lineup we will be dressing barring a big trade by Sather. Unfortunate for Nash, but i am going to assume he is going to be out until the spring. Have to just analyze the team with what we have. Really unfortunate given how the team has improved in recent weeks. Could use our best sniper.

      • Walt says:

        Evan

        Holy crap, I never knew Nash had a concussion while in Columbus. People said I was a bit over reacting when I said what I did about his history of concussions, and that he may consider hanging up his skates if this one takes forever to heal. You just killed my day man.

        Rick get well quick, heal, and think longterm about the rest of your life, you’ve earned enough money, now live life to the fullest.

    • Centerman21 says:

      They will have well over 30 mil to spend this summer. They can fill out a roster with that. Trades are inevitable.

  4. Al says:

    Rangers got pushed around and there stars got hit and hit hard. It’s time to get a real Heavyweight enforcer.

    • agentsmith says:

      overrated. how about forwards who can finish and d men with poise who can shoot a puck?

  5. HARLEMBLUES says:

    Good and bad.Bad first.Both turnovers no pressure GTFPO.This must be the worse team at clearing the puck out of their zone, the worse.Time and time again it’s a challenge to get the fckn puck out of the zone.Lift the puck out,teammate open give it to him no must stick handle,turnover.No player in the middle to help if the boards are covered.I could go on but this needs to be addressed.Brassard needs to play with finishers.His talent is being wasted.BRICH is shooting to just be shooting now.3RD period PP at end twice he should have held the puck and walked in.Good-Kreider is becoming a beast.MZA is so skilled.Dorsett is getting chances.I do like Mashinter.Oh Pyatt is the ugly.depth is production 1 thru 4 not just bodies.

    • JoeP199 says:

      The first thing Brassard needs to do is stop giving the puck away. Yes, he has talent, but what good is it if he gives the puck to the other team?

  6. Raff says:

    Al and Bloomer are right-A true heavyweight would be a good start…But we need more than just an enforcer-Cannot believe lack of size and heart of this current squad. Dorsett is our ‘heavyweight’! Wow-Sather hasn’t been able to see and remedy this?

  7. HARLEMBLUES says:

    More good a 2 one game.Things are getting better.

    • Bob says:

      I thought AV was supposed to cure us from getting pinned in our zone? What happened to attacking the points? Haven’t seen that once this year.

      • zubov says:

        Were you watching the same game? The ducks are just a very good team. They had a very strong first 15 minutes and beginning of the third period, but besides that the Rangers I think controlled most of the flow of the game.

        Totally unlucky not to have gotten a point out of that game. Massive improvement from earlier in the year. It also helps to have faced them with callahan and hagelin, as opposed to the first time around

      • HARLEMBLUES says:

        Ii’s not even coaching Bob, GTFPO.Head up make the right pass.Brassard had no pressure passes puck into traffic other side was open.BRICH several strides from blue line tries a backhand cross ice pass to a not moving covered teammate.A open teammate to his right was moving up ice.No pressure on both plays.Bob AV was brought here to change a whole bunch of things, one thing at a time.GTFPO.

        • Bob says:

          Please you guys killed the old regime for using a strategy almost every coach in the league uses including AV.

  8. Craig says:

    The majority of the Ranger players are to small middle weights and to light to win against the bigger talented physical teams. The better teams have a balanced blend of speed, size, physicality, talent and a streak of nastiness
    The Rangers are a good team but it seems for years they haven’t found the right balance.
    An imbalanced team will not win the Cup with to many one dimensional players.
    To many guys, though they hustle and are decent players lack balance to their game. The good teams have 3rd and 4th lines that check and are legitimate scoring threats with toughness
    Pyatt, Boyle. Dorsett, MDZ, Zuch,and a couple of others including yes, Bassard though he has talent lacks in other areas.

  9. Walt says:

    I tend to agree with Raff, and Craig, we do need some heart, stone gonads, grit, which is lacking.

    I’m a fan of Boyle, never drops the gloves, Pyatt will hit you with his purse, Strahlman, Girardi, two others who won’t fight for themselves. The time has come, and I have asked for what appears to be for ever, that McIlrath come up to the parent club, for no reason but to live up to his name.

    How many more times is Step going to be hit in the head, before he turns into Nash? Just take a good look at this years version of the Pens, man they are skilled, and tough as nails. Plenty of guys who WILL defend their sissys, Cindy, and Igor. I don’t want to be a Filthadelphia, but they also drop the gloves to protect their stars.

    Slats, you need grit, trade MDZ to Filthy, and get a Simmons in return. The guy is skilled, and tough as hell, won’t back down from anyone. There are players like him around the NHL, we don’t need to play nothing but ice capades type players, I’m sick of it. We have some very good players, Kreider, Step, McD, and others who should be looked out for!!!!!

    • HARLEMBLUES says:

      Well said Walt.Step was hit right at the blue line. ref was standing to step right as the play was moving into the zone.Two refs in hockey no? No goons,just tough 2way not on my watch,i will knock your ass out for cheap shots, players.I will only bring Dylan McIlrath up when he’s ready to play meaningful 2way minutes.On this team Boyle,Pyatt and Girardi need to stick up for the skill players or smaller players.They aren’t that type of player.Our big guys don’t play big or tough.I’m not talking about who has the most hits.

  10. Mikeyyy says:

    Oiler brass attended the game.

    Kicking tires on someone messier likes.

    • Walt says:

      Maybe they can send us a closer for MDZ, we are deep at defense, and the kid is over paid for his production. I can hear it now, MDZ hater, go ahead, that isn’t the case, but simpletins will call me that, so be it!!

  11. Craig says:

    The Rangers must let go of certain players that are lacking certain attributes and are not balanced
    Pyatt= little talent or toughness, slow
    Boyle== limited talent, lacks toughness,
    Dorsett= little talent, undisciplined, not a genuine enforcer
    MDZ=lack of physical presence, inconsistent
    Girardi=sometimes lacks physical presence, lacks toughness
    Dominic Moore=lack of toughness, limited skill
    Anton Stralman= lack of toughness and physical play
    Derick Brassard= inconsistent, lack of toughness
    Benoit Pouliot= limited skill in finishing a play, inconsistent, lack of discipline

    I’m not saying some of these are all bad players, just to inconsistent and one dimensional.

    • HARLEMBLUES says:

      Brassard needs to play with skilled wings with 2way toughness.Wouldn’t give up on him just yet.Dorsett has stopped taking bad penalties and is getting and creating chances.He is our Lightweight,Mashinter could turnout to be our middleweight.We need that heavyweight and now.You need 3 rough nonsense players to support the tough 2way players and protect the skill players.