In a game that saw the return of Brian Boyle and the debut of Derek Dorsett, the Rangers fell short losing in OT to the Caps, on a Mike Green power play goal 8 minutes into the 1st OT period. The Rangers came out flying and playing physical, led by their captain Ryan Callahan who had 5 hits in the opening period alone, but this game was more about the Rangers failures on the PP than anything else. As we saw through most of the regular season, the Rangers cannot score when they have the man advantage. On the other side the Caps have an extremely affective PP and you have to hold your breath every time they get the extra skater. The Rangers may trail the series 2-0 but they are by no means out of this series yet, but they need to find an answer and find it fast.
The Rangers scored a goal early in the 1st period of game one and have not score since. It’s always a low scoring game when these 2 teams meet, but the Rangers offense has been completely anemic, on the PP and even at full strength. Yesterday, Henrik Lundqvist did all he could, stopping 37 of 38 shots, yet it was not enough to beat the Capitals. The Rangers registered 24 shots on goal and they were all stopped by Braden Holtby.
Late in the 3rd period the Ref’s clearly missed a delay of game penalty on the Caps, that could have given the Rangers a PP going into the OT, but it was ruled to be deflected of a Rangers stick before going out of play. The Rangers would get a PP early into the OT but as has been the case they failed to capitalize with the man advantage. Coach Tortorella continues to try and find line combinations that are successful, but he has failed so far. The one thing he hasn’t tried yet is putting Mats Zuccarello on the PP; his creativity could help produce some more shots on the PP. Another positive could be the return of Marc Staal and Ryan Clowe, if they are ready to play Monday at the Garden. We will have to wait and see if they are available but both have been skating at practice, and they were out again at this morning’s skate around.
It is not time to panic yet as the series heads back to NY for game 3 on Monday night, but this is a must win game for the Blueshirts if they hope to make a series out of this.