Game ThreadPlayoffs

Conference Finals Game Seven: Buckle up

It’s another Game 7 for the New York Rangers. This time though, the incredibly skilled Tampa Bay Lightning are what stand between the Rangers and a second straight Prince of Wales trophy. There’s not much else you need to say about a Game 7

Justin wrote a very detailed analysis on how to beat Ben Bishop, and I wrote a detailed systems/numbers preview of the series. Both are great reads if you haven’t already perused.

Bolts Systems

Jon Cooper has the Lightning playing a pretty similar system as the Rangers. They run an overload 1-2-2 forecheck, but will mix in a 2-1-2 as well. They do this quite often against the Rangers actually. In the defensive zone, they mix zone and overload coverage depending on puck location. On special teams, they run a 1-3-1 power play and rotate between a diamond and box penalty kill depending on opposition setup.

Bolts Lines

Brendan Morrow-Valterri Filppula-Steven Stamkos
Ondrej Palat-Tyler Johnson-Nikita Kucherov
Alex Killorn-Cedric Paquette-Ryan Callahan
Brian Boyle-J.T. Brown

Victor Hedman-Anton Stralman
Jason Garrison-Brayden Coburn
Matt Carle-Andrej Sustr
Nikita Nesterov

PP1: Stamkos-Boyle-Palat-Filppula-Stralman
PP2: Johnson-Kucherov-Callahan-Killorn-Carle

PK: Boyle, Brown, Johnson, Filppula, Palat, Stamkos, Stralman, Hedman, Carle

Ben Bishop gets the start.

Rangers Lines

Rick NashDerick BrassardMartin St. Louis
Chris KreiderDerek StepanJesper Fast
Carl HagelinDominic MooreKevin Hayes
Tanner GlassJ.T. Miller

Ryan McDonaghDan Girardi
Marc StaalDan Boyle
Keith YandleKevin Klein
Matt Hunwick

PP1: Kreider-Stepan-St. Louis-Brassard-Boyle
PP2: Nash-Hayes-Miller-McDonagh-Yandle

PK: Stepan, Nash, Girardi, Staal, Moore, Fast, Boyle, Hagelin, Yandle, McDonagh

Henrik Lundqvist is in net.

Scratches/Injuries: Mats Zuccarello (concussion), James Sheppard (healthy)

Crazy Prediction: The defense remembers how to gap control.

Be sure to check out our ticket link if you’re looking for tickets to the game. Game time is 8pm on NBCSN.

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  • The Rangers must play on the INSIDE in between the face off dots. At the top of the crease is where this game will be won or loss. The Rangers must win the middle of the ice. Skate HARD,, hit HARD with DESIRE and the WILL to FINiSH this quest. LGR

  • Well, to continue with my Apollo 13 analogy, I will just say to all of you, “Gentlemen, it has been a pleasure blogging with you.”

    Time to go into radio silence….hope to see you on the other side in about 5 hours! 🙂

    Oh…and one more thing…..LETS GO RANGERS!!!!!!!!!

  • I’ll stick with the same thing I’ve always said, if the Rangers win it will be awesome; if not, it’s been a great season.

    LET’S GO RANGERS!

    Crazy Prediction: Tanner Glass scores the game winner.

  • Is McD hurt? You can’t anything of value out of the 3 asswipes doing the game. Is he just sick or what?

  • 11 shots after two disappointing . Stop being quite with the puck . Put the puck on net and play in the blue. No goals in five periods at home.

  • 11 shots through 2 is unacceptable.

    They need to dig deep here and put it all on the line in the 3rd because, well, it is.

  • That’s it boys. One team goes to the net. The other plays to the outside. At home shutout twice. Lose 3 of 4 home games. Wow. I expected more but I expected more in game five.

    • Yup. When Tampa’s turned it on, they’ve been the better team. Both team’s at their best has favored TB. I wanted Cally win lift the cup as a Ranger. Now I’ll have to settle as a Lightning.

    • No James Sheppard had nothing to do with this loss. No Mats Zuccarello all series did. No excuse though, Tampa Bay was just better.

      • Bull crap, no 12th forward screws up the line rotation. The Rangers forwards looked lost and out of sync as line chemistry is thrown of the window. Messing with the line up in game 7 of the Eastern Conference backfired on the coaching staff.

  • This team is not good enough to win it all…Lundqvuist got beat again by another goalie

    To get shut out is a disgrace.

    Lundqvuist played a good game but he got zip…nada support.

    There has to be some major changes….more size

    • I believe this team is/was good enough. It doesn’t always play out that way. You put yourself in a game 7, disappointments are going to happen on occasion.

      • How were we good enough? That was a disgraceful effort by the skaters. If we are good enough we move on.

        How is getting shut out good enough?

        • Obviously tonight wasn’t good enough, Leather.

          But one game a season does not make.

          Were they good enough in game 6? Game 4?

          Were they good enough down 3-1 to the Caps with 101 seconds left and down a goal?

          This team can go toe-to-toe with anyone.

          Next season, hopefully no St Louis. Put Zuke in the lineup and this team is pretty well set.

          Maybe an adjustment on the blue line (Klein out perhaps).

          Not much needs to change beyond that.

          This team made 3 Conference Finals appearances in 4 years. You don’t blow that up.

          But you’re right about Hank. He’s not getting any younger. I thought this was his year.

          Hopefully he has a couple more years of playoff magic left in his tank.

        • You act like everything is black and white. Tonight wasn’t good enough, but doesn’t define this team. It’s a let down and an opportunity squandered.

      • They won because they wanted it more

        11 shots after 2? 2 powerplays?

        I am angry with what they did on the ice…pathetic

        • You won’t find much disagreement there.

          Obviously they didn’t “want it enough,” or something like that. I don’t know what it was. It was certainly uninspiring.

          But your go-to answer for every deficit is size. Bigger guys don’t necessarily want it more or play harder.

          This team can win. They know how to win. They just came up short tonight, at the worst possible moment.

    • Yup. Simply said, a bad match up. This is why we were all worried about playing this team when the playoff started.

  • This was not a loss you can say they played their hearts out but lost. I am a destination man not a journey man

    • Yeah, I agree there.

      I was just telling my brother, I preferred losing in the Finals last year to this. At least they truly left it all on the ice. Series was 4-1 but every game was close and 3 went to OT. Much closer than it would seem on the surface.

      This series, despite going 7, was far more mismatched and disparate. And this game 7 was particularly underwhelming.

  • Disappointing effort as was Game 5. No forecheck, no traffic in front, bad PP, not enough shots. Shut out in 7+ consecutive periods at home. Lost 3 of 4 on home ice.

    The Rangers need to do a lot of soul searching as individuals and as an organization after this one.

    Huge, huge let down.

  • You lose 3 of 4 at home, you don’t deserve to be in the Finals. To let them come into your building and let them get away with playing a game like that, is a total disgrace!!! Coach and the staff have to take their share of the blame here, too. Just total devastation!!!!! Oh yeah, 11 down…….A WHOLE ENTIRE SEASON TO GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!…….. Have a nice summer guys…….i need to get away from this disaster………..

  • No fire from the start. Man, come on. Your at home game7. I feel for Hank. Lundqvist still has to be the best player on this team and that has to change. This team needs a leader other then the King. I saw no one getting in anyone’s face and saying follow me.

    • If McD is scratched, the Rangers come out with fire. The 7 defensemen and the delayed appearance made the game about McDonagh, not Lundqvist. The Rangers start the game waiting. And he wasn’t that good when he did appear.

    • Willis Reed limps on to the court. Crowd goes wild. He hits his first shots. Walt Frazie then has the Finals game of a life time. He said I got this follow me. The Rangers knew McD had a broken foot. He plays but no one else shows the HEART or WILL that their Captain does. No one. SAD.

  • Great season. Great season. They should be proud. The boys work so hard, give their all, especially Hank and Mac. I think their efforts will pay off, there’s something about this group. They’ll get theirs.

    While I wanted the boys to win the Cup, to me as a fan, that’s not what it’s all about. It’s great to see them do so well and make these deep runs, but I’d root for them even if they lost all 82 games. Being a Rangers fan is something special, something ineffable. I wish I could articulate myself right now and make this comment more sentimental, but I can’t. Bummed it’s over, not because they won’t be champs, but because I don’t get to watch Ranger hockey ’til October.

    Congrats on a great season, here’s to next year.

    P.S. Great coverage from BSB, keep up the good work.

    • Only 1 team lifts the Cup each year.

      For the players, the only goal is the Cup. For us fans, it’s all about the journey and the Cup is the rare cherry on top. Win or lose, you stand by your team, otherwise you were never really a fan.

      I love this team, and after the dark decade we all mucked through, these past 10 years have reignited the spark of Rangers fandom.

      We do have something really special here we should all be proud of, even if it’s sometimes difficult to see when the team stumbles and falls just a bit short.

      That something is hope, something this organization had little of for a long time before we were all graced with Lundqvist’s presence, a truly generational player we’re privileged to experience.

      Because with this hope, we can say “there’s always next year,” and actually believe it.

      Let’s go Rangers!

        • Yes, the goal is the Cup for fans, too.

          However, 29 fan bases each year don’t reach that goal, and yet they cheer on.

          We should be grateful that we’re part of an organization that we can honestly say could very well do it next year.

          That makes for yet another exciting season to look forward to. And for that, I’m thankful.

          • Great comments from 43 and Chris F. Totally agree.

            This hurts, but what hurts more is how this affects my son. He was devasted tonight. He went to his room to be alone afterwards. I found him up there staring at the ceiling. I told him to hang in. And I told him that the best part of this season and every season is that I get to share each and every game with him. It’s just a reminder, yes the destination and the ultimate prize is what we all want, but the journey is so much fun, especially with this team.

          • I commend you for that optimism right now. This team is built around Lundqvist, and each season that goes by without a cup is another step toward continuing the 1 championship in the last 75 year drought.

          • It’s a fair point. But I think this team has a good young group that will only get better. There’s no reason why Hank shouldn’t have another 3-4 real good years left. Window isn’t closing yet.

            That being said, having watched the Rangers for almost 50 years, I remember the really good teams of the early to mid 70s. Knocked on the door, went to the Cup Finals in 72, but couldn’t take the final step. I do fear that Hank might met the same fate as my guy Eddie. But again, there’s still time.

  • Ok, another year of frustration. Tampa deserved to win. You get shut out 2x on your home ice enough said. I never felt confident with this team, even when they beat pittsburg in 5 games. Tonights game reminded me of the game 5. We should have been in their face, instead we were playing not to loose. Hats off to Tampa. I love Ryan McD, the guy is all blood and guts, I hope it was not a Stamkos check that broke his foot??? On that note we need to get bigger and tougher. Become more of a team that makes others think twice about taking advantage, with no retaliation. Go out and trade for Milan Lucic, give McILrath a legit chance to make the club. You might loose some speed and skill, but you will gain courage and a nasty streak that is so lacking on this team!!!!!

    • Lucic is a joke.

      Not only is he a malicious dirtbag, but he’s also declining as a player. He’s becoming a liability out there.

      He’d make the Rangers worse, no doubt about it.

  • Colorodo had Claude Leimiux’ Pittsburgh had Ulf Samuelson, both made serious contributions in their teams stanley cup victories’ every team needs a shit kicker that keeps the other teams honest. Lucic is the kind of player that other teams and fans hate, but if he is on your team, you love him. He has an edge, can fight , he can score, he can hit. Put him in Ranger blue. Mcilrath too..

    • Bruins fans are ready to ship Lucic out. He’s not good. He costs too much against the cap and can’t score. No.

    • McIlrath again? When will it ever end???? Can he at least be more than a mediocre AHL player before we anoint him some kind of savior. He’s NOT good! He’s big. Maybe next year he will be good, but he’s not an NHL caliber player today. Unless he makes a dramatic turnaround over the summer, he’s not likely to play for the Rangers or anyone else.

      We didn’t lose this game or this series because we weren’t big enough or tough enough. We lost because we couldn’t score consistently. An oversized traffic cone on the back line isnt going to help us put the puck in the net!

      But sure, get me a guy with his size that can actually skate and play an NHL game, then I’m right with you!

  • Devastated. Just devasted.

    So many mixed emotions with all this. It’s incomprehensible to me that they could be shutout at home twice in a row by a team that, at least up until our series, was supposedly a defensive adventure beyond their first d-pair. I agree, ultimately, that’s on the players and the coaches. Inexcusable.

    Can’t blame it on any one player. This was a collective failure tonight. Other than Hank, everyone was substandard.

    BUT, that doesn’t wipe out what a terrific season this was. They win the President’s Trophy, were one period away from back to back trips to the finals, a feat I think only three teams have done in the past 25 years. A lot of people wondered if they’d even make it to the playoffs this year. They had key injuries during the season. Kept winning. They lose Zuc….they find themselves down 3-1 vs the Caps and find a way back. We find out McDonagh played the last three games with a broken foot. And they take a tremdous Tampa team to the limit despite no Zuc and a compromised Captain. Yes, I know injuries are part of the game, but at a certain point, with two evenly matched teams, it may well have been the tipping point.

    I bleed Ranger blue no matter what. We all do. I will eventually realize that this was an extremely enjoyable season. These last few years have been SO much fun! This team, with a few inevitable changes, will remain one of the top 4 teams in the league next year. No reason why we can’t be right back in the ECF next year, and hopefully a different result this time.

    It will be a fascinating off season for sure.

    I’m going to pout and sulk for a couple of days, and then start thinking about next year.

    Hang in there everyone!

  • Eddie! Marty McSorley, Ken Danyko, Jeff Beukaboom, Ulf Samuelson, all examples of stay at home defensemen , who were not the best skaters, but who could bang, fight, be nasty, stand up for their teamates. What do they all have in common?? They all won multiple stanley cups. McIlrath, is cut from that same mold. The kid deserves a chance.

    • The kid has been getting chances. Year after year. And keeps going backwards in the minors. . The other guys you mentioned all EARNED their opportunities. To this point, McIlrath has earned nothing except the title of most disappointing prospect.

      I hope you are right though. But he needs major, major work to make an NHL team, let alone a Cup contender. This summer will be huge for him.

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