As the LA Kings sit at home all alone waiting for another ‘Dance Partner’ to continue their run for the Stanley Cup, the New York Rangers stand in front of their mirrors and stare, wondering ‘Do we have what it takes?’
Or really have the New Jersey Devils completely got into the ‘blue shirts’ minds and destroyed all confidence?
After playing one of their best games throughout these playoffs the other night we all are starting to wonder but the one fella that will not and can not disagree more then ever to all of us is NY Rangers Coach John Tortorella.
‘We have all the confidence in the world and how we will react to last nights game, simple.’ that was the statement that Coach Tort’s came out with and was still sticking with come this Thursday morning. And why shouldn’t he be stating this. The Rangers have re-grouped after loses before so this shouldn’t be any different or should it be?
The Devils seemed to have the Rangers number or at least some of the Rangers players numbers anyway. For instance I think the Ranger fans might be wondering where the heck did Derek Stepan go or Carl Hagelin or even Captain Ryan Callahan might of stepped off to? Look it up and you will see the points of these three total 21 while the Rangers two strong defense men of Girandi and Del Zotto also have combined for 21 points. Great news really? but not really, as you need production out of these forwards who in the regular season had combined total points of 143, with Callahan scoring 29 goals, Stepan 17 goals and Hagelin with 14 goals. Those same two defense men that I mentioned before had a total of 15 goals in the regular season, now can you see what the real problem is?!
The Rangers need goals and they need them from these 3 gentlemen fast but the smart guys we call the Devils know this and have been doing a pretty good job taking them out the play and at some points through out this series right out of the game as Coach Tortorella hasn’t been afraid to sit these boys at the end of the bench so they can have the best sits in the house to watch the game. Remember they are to be playing it not watching it as they have been doing on most nights.
The Devils also have been getting under the ‘skin’ of the Rangers Captain too, which isn’t looking so good on Callahan. He is the leader and is to be in control of himself and be a example to his team mates but truthfully he isn’t doing a very good job of it right now.
I really don’t think the Rangers confidence is fallen but the frustration point is very close to exploding and that might happen before game 6 finishes. If the Devils are anyway close to being up in the score for game 6 look out these Rangers will blow and it won’t be pretty. The Rangers must remember that they were down 3-0 in game 5 and came back to tie it. They were taking the play to the Devils most of the game and they were controlling it at long stretches but what most of us saw was the ‘puck Gods’ were on the Devils side for game 5. Now the Rangers must hope that crazy idea takes a turn for the better in the ‘Blue Shirts’ way. Lets get ready for game 6 and find out if the Devils will take it or will the Rangers have the confidence to get the series to game 7 and delay the LA Kings some further time in waiting for their partner at the ‘Big Dance’.
By Warren Nye, UltimateHockeySource.com
Photo by Scott Levy/NHLI via Getty Images
May 25th, 2012