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TheNYRBlog 12-Pack: Disturbing Trends (Game 8)

Just when you thought this excruciatingly awful beginning to the Rangers season couldn’t get worse, they lose to the f’n Islanders.

1. Let me know if you’ve heard this one before. Bad start puts Rangers behind the eight ball before clawing their way back into the game only to ultimately fall short. It’s like Groundhog Day. And similar to Bill Murray, Rangers fans can’t make it stop.

2. Speaking of disturbing trends. The Rangers gave up their 8th power play goal against which puts them dead last in the NHL with a 73.3 PK%. They also committed 17 more turnovers including FIVE from Ryan McDonagh. Mind blow time: Maybe it was McDonagh who was holding Girardi back.

3. While I’d like to give the Rangers credit for once again showing resiliency, I’m beginning to wonder if it’s less about the Blueshirts and more about the opponent taking their foot off the gas with a lead. I mean Anders Lee pretty much single-handedly put the Rangers back into the game.

4. There was a lot that bothered me about tonight’s performance from the Rangers but nothing more than the Brock Nelson goal. The Rangers were completely outworked from the second the puck entered the defensive zone until it eventually ended up behind Lundqvist.

You want to know why the Rangers are having tough starts to games? They aren’t hungry enough. They lost at least five individual puck battles during that sequence. Inexcusable.

5. Depending on your feelings towards Rick Nash you either wanted to give him a hug or a smack following this one. After coming up empty on all five shots on goal – all of which were of the high danger variety – he is now sporting a paltry 2.9% shooting percentage (1-for-34). That’s Rick Nash postseason bad.

6. Speaking of Nash, according to NHL Insider Bob McKenzie the Rangers haven’t discussed a contract extension with the 33-year old forward and could potentially trade him as a rental between now and the trade deadline if they’re not able to improve on their poor start.

McKenzie added that it’s not clear whether Nash will be looking for Patrick Marleau money (three years at $6.25 million)…

…or if he’d be willing to take a pay cut to an Eric Staal (three-years at $3.5 million) level.

7. A game after costing the Rangers a point by giving up a last minute behind the goal line tally to Sidney Crosby, Henrik Lundqvist redeemed himself by looming large in the final seconds to secure a point for the Blueshirts…

After giving up a poor angle goal for the second straight game, I started questioning the abilities of Lundqvist. And while we can’t count on vintage King every game, he proved tonight there’s still plenty of gas left in the tank.

8. The last time I checked, this is a distinct kicking motion:

While this is not:

Obviously, you can’t assume the Kevin Hayes goal if this was allowed, so I’m not going to get too crazy about it, but the NHL really needs to figure this rule out. Did Smith direct the puck into the net with his skate? Probably. But was it with a “distinct kicking motion”? Not even close!

9. Another undisciplined penalty from Chris Kreider. I hate to say it, but we might have seen the best Kreider has to offer last season. While I know the Avalanche are looking for a young puck moving defenseman for Matt Duchene, if I’m Jeff Gorton I’d be taking Joe Sakic’s temperature towards a swap for Kreider.

10. Rangers down 2-1 in the shootout with one chance left to tie it up and who does AV turn to….David Desharnais.

I know Desharnais has scored in two straight games, but he’s also 0 for his last 8 in the shootout. While AV has trust issues with Buchnevich, he seems like a player who’d light it up in the shootout.

11. It was nice to see Jimmy Vesey and Jesper Fast summon their inner-Tanner Glass as they combined for 10 hits tonight.

12. Five straight losses. Only four points in eight games to start the season. Tied for most goals allowed with 30. 1-3-2 at MSG. There’s no way to sugarcoat this folks: It’s ugly.  I’m not sure how AV survives the month if this keeps up.

13. Sorry, I can’t close this out on such a negative note. If there’s any ray of hope, the Rangers have been extremely unlucky this season. Despite registering at least 30 shots on goal in five straight and in seven of eight games this season, they currently sport just a 7.3% shooting percentage which is 1.2% lower than the league average while their PDO (team shooting % + team save %) is at an extremely low 97 (average is 100). You have to assume that they’ll eventually regress to the mean, but at that point you wonder if it’ll be too late.

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11 thoughts on “TheNYRBlog 12-Pack: Disturbing Trends (Game 8)

  1. I think the problem with the kicking motion was the first contact with the left skate toward the goal. That was a bit of a kick and then another skate contact wasn’t enough to undo the first one. Had that puck come from someone else’s stick onto the toe of his right skate, it’s a goal. I don’t think he could pull off that toe-eight-ball-in-the-side-pocket bank shot one out of another twenty times. Had that been the isles, the screw Rangers button would have been pushed.
    AV has to go. Also, good call on the locker room not having characters. I think I’d rather stab myself in the eye with a fork than feed myself at a dinner with Staal and McDonagh with one. Step and Girardi are another story.

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  2. This is really ugly. Going down a goal or more early in every single game is mind-blowing. I’m really astounded by the Captain. Something is way off there. The lack of any structure by the 5 skaters on the ice in their own zone in the 1st period and a half was ludicrous and is affecting Hank’s technique/mindset especially early in the games. The 3rd goal was bad, but he was a monster the rest of the way making ridiculous scrambling saves. And yet I read lots of takes that the loss was on him because he didn’t win the shootout. Oy vey. I still think it is on the players to come out prepared to play. But, another 1 or 2 starts like this and AV is gone…

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  3. – I want to hug Nash…then smack him! He’s been one of the only Rangers creating chances, vintage Nash – taking the puck to the paint. It’s the games where you don’t hear his name at all that I don’t like. Keep it up Nash! Then I’ll smack him, hoping that alters his shot an inch or two, so those posts and shots that slide through the paint actually go in!
    – NOT a distinct kicking motion…bad call. No call in the OT when Zbad got tripped immediately followed by a TMM penalty on the Rangers? Not happy about that either!
    – Kreider needs to show up and stay out of the box.
    – Glad the Rangers have all these ‘puck moving Defensemen’ – none of whom seem to know how to play Defense (and seem to move the puck to the opposing team)
    – end of Rant

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  4. Okay, I just came out of my coma(where I spent a lot of time with Chris Kreider–Does he know it is not Pre-Season?)1 Actually the whole team stopped by and visited me quite often. I have never seen Dancing with the Stars(in my younger days spent many a night in a haze doing that) and I have never been to The Ice Capades, but I think I can kill two birds with one stone and go to a Ranger Game. PS-I have seen Night of The Living Dead and now the sequel is MY BLEEPIN’ Hockey team????? Do the “Boys in Blue” realize these are not intra-squad games and that hitting the other team is actually a strategy? Does AV know anything? I know his record is great, but my question is how do he do it? Did Emile( The Cat) really put the entire Ranger team on waivers in 1975? If he did let’s do it again. This team needs a MAJOR SHAKE! I suggest giving the team an ultimatum. Start playing with some heart or else at every practice, before every game and in between periods also James Dolan will play guitar at max volume in the locker room! Also, just as the Cup winners get a day with The Cup, the player who performs the worst has to take Dolan home with him and stay up ALL NIGHT listening to him jam or explaining why he hates Charles Oakley so much! If that doesn’t work than have Mark Messier come in and just stare at the team all day every day until the shi______ship rights itself. If that doesn’t work than have Nancy Kerrigan come in and sit in the middle of the locker room screaming, “Why, Why”. Okay, I am out of ideas for now( I will have more if this continues), so if anyone has any good ideas please email me @ bd I think I m going out of my head.litttle anthony and the imperials.thisstinks.coma!

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  5. Nash is about the only forward outcthere busting his ass every game every shift.. and I think he’s our oldest forward? I have no issue with him… the other 21 guys not so much. There are very few players in the league that are harder to contain than Rick Nash. Too bad he has hands if lead otherwise he’d be a 40 or 50 goal scorer every season.. and he’s about the inluckiest
    Bastard I know

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  6. In hindsight, I would have much rather moved Kreider to Arizona rathen that Step. But that’s hindsight. I just don’t see Kevin Hayes being a #2 center in this league. I have a hard time explaining what it is that bothers me, but he just seems to approach every shift like it’s the all-star game. Always looking for the cute passes, always half-assing his puck battles. I actually would have rather lost in regulation on Thursday then see him score that soft goal to tie it from the goal line. I know the old addage, always put it on net, you never know what will happen, but he’s not doing that because he’s Sidney Crosby and he knows he can score from any angle. he’s doing it because he’d rather take a 1% chance shot from 15 feet out than drop his shoulder and cut in to the front of the net.

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    1. No points for losing in regulation and we need them desperately.
      He must have heard you. That was a nice power move to the net against Nashville.

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