Apr
29

Gearing up for Rangers – Senators Game 2

April 29, 2017, by

Don’t tell Kevin how good Marc Methot was in Game 1

Folks, I’m going to be honest with you. There is no reason to hit the panic button quite yet. I know this is very alarming for several people, because people are so romantic when the team wins and so mentally unhinged when the team loses, but I promise you don’t need to freak out.

As a team ventures deeper into the murky waters of the playoffs, they’re destined to meet teams that also deserve to be there. Though people may have dismissed the Senators as a hard hitting, slow team (ahh, the good old Chris Neil days), the team now is far from that. Their defense is not well established, but they make plenty of adjustments and play Erik Karlsson —who, if he is injured, as a robot is not affected — damn near 30 minutes a night.

All of this being said, the Rangers still have more depth. They just have to get out of this pattern of playing like a bunch of clowns before getting their you know what together.

For starters, don’t take three penalties right off the bat. The Sens power play is good. The Sens took 21 shots in the first period of Game 1. For those of you who are angsty about the Karlsson game winning goal, go back to your local community college and take a statistics course. Hell, go to the statistics wikipedia page. Even though Henrik Lundqvist is a blessing, you can’t expect him to stop every single shot he faces and allow him to face 43 shots on goal. Get in their lanes, cut off their passing. Bing bang boom.

Additionally, more than one of those calls was avoidable. The Rangers took delay of game, too many men, and very basic holding penalties, all of which did not need to happen. Brady Skjei appeared to be a little lonely because he wanted to just hug every single person in red on the ice. Taking two — two! — penalties for hooking and holding is excessive. Skjei is a rookie facing his second playoff series, so some adjustment time is expected, but these are avoidable penalties.

The funny part is that Ottawa wound up taking more penalties than the Rangers, but due to the volume in the first period, many fans seem to believe that the team couldn’t get their footing. While this is fair, this game to me was a typical situation where the adjustments were made on one side (Ottawa) and not made on the other side (Rangers). Repeat after me: this is an easy solution. The Rangers have more depth. The Rangers could win this series. They made adjustments against Montreal and it proved successful.

With all that being said, it’d be a bore to dissect the Senators’ lines since they change frequently. What is of note is that they play a fairly tight, defensive-minded game, and if you allow them to take shots, they will pepper them against Henrik Lundqvist all night. Certain players — calling Kevin Hayes and Ryan McDonagh — need to be better in the second game, but that’s almost expected at this point. Each round, and each game, has its own heroes.

Lets brace ourselves for some afternoon hockey today kiddos.

"Gearing up for Rangers - Senators Game 2", 5 out of 5 based on 5 ratings.
Categories : Rants

13 comments

  1. roadrider says:

    The Rangers have advanced this far primarily because of Henrik Lundqvist. You can argue that their “depth” allowed them to beat MTL and there’s truth in that because many of their key forwards (Hayes, Miller, Kreider, Stepan) were pretty bad for most of the series but guys like Fast, Lindbergh, Glass and Grabner picked up enough of the slack to make a difference. But even with that, absent some super human saves by # 30 the Rangers would be playing golf instead of hockey this week.

    Game 1 against OTT showed a lot of regression back to the poor play that we saw in the first round and, as you rightly point out, the further you go the tougher the competition gets. So the Rangers will need to raise their game and won’t be able to get by with what they did against MTL. Lundqvist can’t do it all by himself. The boys should try and give him an easy game or 2 by actually scoring some goals, adding on to leads when they have an opportunity (something this team has been weak on all season) and not going into a defensive shell to sit on a one goal lead at the end of games.

    Let’s hope some of that starts this afternoon.

  2. Chris F says:

    On the bright side, the Rangers are where they are right now despite 1PP goal in the playoffs, an abysmal PK, zero non-empty net goals by Kreider, Miller, Stepan, or Hayes, and “three of the worst ten defenseman in the League.”

    Imagine what happens if some of these things improve.

    The series is far from out of reach. But, yes, I generally agree that today is a very critical game. Almost a must win.

    • roadrider says:

      Imagine what happens if some of these things improve.

      If it remains a matter of imagination we’re in a lot of trouble.

      • Chris F says:

        Yeah, that’s a given. But the PP clicked at a great rate this season, and those four guys mentioned are capable of much more than we’ve seen, so there’s no reason to think this will remain something we have to imagine.

        I feel a big game today.

        • roadrider says:

          The PP also went through an enormous dry stretch that had little to do with luck (luck is random – if you go 3 for 59 there’s something obviously wrong that isn’t a matter of luck). The bad zone entries, lack of quick puck movement, reluctance to shoot, failure to screen the goalie are all problems that keep cropping up in the Rangers’ PP suggesting that the successes are more a matter of luck than the failures.

          The Rangers are the only team I can think of that consistently looks out numbered with the man advantage or that kills the penalty more effectively than the opponents’ PK.

          The other thing that bothers me about the PP is that when the Rangers really need a goal to add on to a lead or to cut a deficit they rarely capitalize on the man advantage to do so.

          Yeah, they have guys who are capable of doing more – let’s see them start doing it – like today. Until then it will be a matter of imagination an unfulfilled potential.

    • Stevem says:

      The Bruins won the cup with an absolutely abysmal PP in 2011. We can advance without the PP clicking on all cylinders ( although it would be freaking nice).. the PK being good is more important.

      • roadrider says:

        Well people keep saying that you don’t need an effective PP to win the Cup but that presupposes that make up for it by scoring 5 on 5, not having a leaky defense, etc. And it also presupposes that the opposition will be equivalent to what the Bruins faced that year which is hardly a given.

        I disagree that the PK is more important and, actually saying that it is kind of negates your point because the PK is deployed against PP. If the PP is not that important to the opposition then neither is your PK.

  3. upstatetom says:

    well boys, now that you know that the sens are for real (like i told you to expect ) are you going to go for a few laps around the rink or go out take out a few bodies and play like you actually mean it. stop being such damn suck asses !!!

  4. Richter1994 says:

    Forwards, show up please. Stop the BS talk and put it out on the ice.

    If both teams play at their best then the Rangers win, it’s as simple as that.

  5. HOF 19 says:

    Not worried about the D…..Not worried about Henrik……But the offense….MUST STEP UP !!!!!!!!…..So C’mon Forwards and Centers…….GET IN THE GAME…….LETS GO RANGERS !!!!!!

  6. Anthony DiMichele says:

    This should have been a 4 game sweep, Anytime we forecheck in that last game they coughed it up. Then we stopped forechecking, no flow to game, the neutral zone 3/1/3 zone they play could be avoided with a speed forecheck. push our to pressure there zone.

    • King Sieveqvist ! King Sieveqvist ! King Sieveqvist ! says:

      U forgot Anderson always giving the Rangers fits

  7. wwpd says:

    thanks becky