When the New York Rangers last left Madison Square Garden they were embarrassed, disappointed, and unsure if they would get another chance this season to erase the haunting memories of a playoff meltdown.
“When your season is on the line, it’s a given that you’re going to come in with every ounce that you have — mentally and physically — and put it all on the line,” forward Brad Richards said Saturday.
In Game 5, the Rangers transformed into a confident, cohesive unit. They put away the bad habits that plagued them 48 hours earlier.
Derick Brassard scored twice, including New York’s first power-play goal in 10 games, and the Rangers assayed alive with a 5-1 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins in Game 5 of the Eastern Conference semifinals Friday night.
“They’re a good team and I don’t want to take any credit away from how well they’re playing right now,” Vigneault said. “They’re making it real hard on us.”
Every person inside the Garden deserves a full refund for being subjected to the sloppy, out-of-sync, uninspired hockey produced by the Rangers.
That series-opening overtime win against the Penguins less than a week ago is now a distant memory as the Rangers have dropped three straight since — including back-to-back losses at MSG.
The Pittsburgh Penguins moved within one win of the Eastern Conference finals with a 4-2 victory over the New York Rangers on Wednesday night.
After being shut out in consecutive games by Marc-Andre Fleury and the Penguins, the Rangers are in desperate need of a spark to ignite their slumping offense. It may come in the form of Chris Kreider.
The King has been good for three games, but Penguins counterpart Marc-Andre Fleury has gone from shaky question mark to star of the series with shutouts on consecutive days.
“If he’s ready, he’s gonna play,” Francesa said on air on Tuesday afternoon. “I’ve heard rumblings. I don’t have any confirmation, and I don’t think there will be any. I would look for him tomorrow, though.”
In Game 3, the Blueshirts established offensive-zone time, thoroughly outshot the Pens by a 35 to 15 margin and their power play finally began to show signs of life as the game went on.
Alain Vigneault finally took a shot at his club’s taxing postseason schedule, but still won’t say his players are tired. Judging by their effort in their latest loss to the Penguins, he might be right.
Marc-Andre Fleury earned his second shutout of the New York Rangers in two nights as the Pittsburgh Penguins regained home-ice advantage with a 2-0 victory in Game 3 on Monday night.
The Penguins handed New York three consecutive power play opportunities – and the Blueshirts failed to cash in. What unfolded was the most timid skating any fan has ever seen.