There is an old saying that if you play not to lose a game, chances are you will lose the game. This is what happened to the Rangers as they played in spurts tonight and hardly played at all in the third period. Once again the Ranger power play failed to win a game. The Rangers were 0-6 and the Islanders were 0-4. The Rangers had a four on three power play for the last 53 seconds of the OT and got all of one shot on goal. The big surprise was the Rangers losing in the shootout as Satan beat Lundqvist and Nylander, Shanahan and Jagr could not beat Wade Dubielewicz (WHO).
Dubielewicz was outstanding, especially in the first two periods when he stopped 29 of 31 shots. He had very little work in the third period when the Rangers fell asleep and almost lost the game then. The Rangers got all of 5 shots on goal in the third while the Islanders put 16 on Lundqvist who stopped them all. Lundqvist was outstanding with both Islander goals coming off of Ranger deflections. Surprise, surprise. It is hard to imagine the Ranger performance tonight after their gangbuster game against the Maple Leafs. Dubielewicz stopped 36 of 38 shots and was voted the games number one star. Lundqvist stopped 32 of 34 shots and was voted the number two star. To say that the Islanders outworked the Rangers is a gross understatement.
Where does this loss leave the Rangers? Think about this. If the Rangers lose to the Canadiens and Penguins they will miss out on the playoffs if Toronto beats the Islanders and the Canadiens. Then the Rangers and Montreal will be tied with 92 points each but the Canadiens would get the eighth spot having more wins than the Rangers. So not getting themselves up against a team that is battered by injuries could turn into the Rangers Waterloo. Thursday night against the Canadiens will be the biggest game in two years for the Rangers. If the Islanders sweep the next three games they will finish with 92 points and would only make the playoffs if the Canadiens lose their last two games. They would tie the Rangers if the Rangers lost their last two and the Islanders would win their last three. However, the Rangers would get eighth because they will have one more win than the Islanders. A regulation tie in one of the last two games will put the Rangers in the playoffs. Confused?
April 4, 2007
Rangers lose out on a chance to clinch
Still A Point Shy
Dubielewicz, Isles Survive, Beat Rangers
April 3, 2007
Rangers Can Clinch Berth On Island
Richter To Rick: Be Careful
Rangers Count On Berth Day
Clinching A Playoff Spot Won't Be Easy
Rangers Try To Sew Up Playoff Berth