Monday, March 03, 2014

A Lost Weekend

What a difference a weekend makes. What a difference two days make. Flying high on Saturday morning, in 2nd place in the Metro and a three point lead over the Flyers, the Rangers hit a wall. Two games later they are sitting in 3rd in the Metro, one point ahead of Washington and of more concern they sit in 7th place in the East one point ahead of Washington and Detroit who are tied for the final playoff spot.

What happened? What went wrong? Everything! The Rangers and Lundqvist gave up ten goals in two games. Who is to blame? Everybody. After a weak, lackluster effort against the Flyers in a 4-2 loss they came out hungry in the first period against the big, bad Bruins. They out shot the Bruins 20-9 in the first period, but left the ice tied at one. They out shot the Bruins 14-12 in the second period and trailed 3-2. The third period was a complete debacle with the Rangers being out shot 12-8 and outscored 3-1. Talk about diminishing returns.

Does this collapse have anything to do with the tinkering of some minor positions; fourth line center Dominic Moore sat in Philadelphia for Derek Dorsett who clearly wasn't ready to play. Moore was back in yesterday. Also Anton Stralman who had effectively been paired with Marc Staal as the number two pairing was dropped to number three  and for some strange reason Dan Girardi got only 5:24 of ice time in the third, the least of all six defensemen. Is it any wonder the defense looked awful in the third. And it's the goalie who gets the blame? Just think, the other day I was praising the coach for being consistent with the lines and pairings and then suddenly, poof!

But it's no time for recriminations. It's Toronto, Carolina and Detroit coming up every other day starting Wednesday. It sounds and feels like the coaching has to shape up and get the team back on course. The Captain has to right the ship. Speaking of Captains, I think it's time to trade Callahan. He says his heart is in New York, but his moves say otherwise. Supposedly he has reduced his demands to six years for $42 mil. That's a lot of dough for a twenty goal scorer.

ICINGS: Congratulation to Jaromir Jagr on scoring his 700th NHL goal. I believe that puts him in 8th place all time. Always liked him and he's my wife's favorite player. He was great as a Ranger and it looks like we gave him up too soon. What else is new.

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