NEWARK, NJ - MAY 21: Linesman Brian Murphy #93 separates Mike Rupp #71 of the New York Rangers and Anton Volchenkov #28 of the New Jersey Devils in Game Four of the Eastern Conference Final during the 2012 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Prudential Center on May 21, 2012 in Newark, New Jersey. (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
NOTE: I am not saying all hope is lost. I am still confident that this team will win the series and will win game 5.
Players were benched, punches were thrown, players were ejected, and the Rangers completely lost control of not only the game, but the series. I am not saying that the Rangers are out of the series, or even that they will lose the series, but the Rangers blew a big chance to get one game away from the Stanley Cup.
Every single player outside of Henrik Lundqvist essentially allowed the Rangers to get outplayed by their opponents. The team looked completely out of it from start to finish, allowing the Devils to glide up and down the ice, get multiple chances to score, and take advantage of those chances.
Sure, the Rangers scored a goal, but the team deserved to be humiliated after that performance. Mike Rupp embarrassed the team by going after Marty Brodeur (someone I hate, but you do not do that) and was ejected from the game. Carl Hagelin took penalties mere seconds apart when the Rangers needed to score. That's just the third period.
The Rangers were outplayed, out worked, and embarrassed by the Devils. This isn't an isolated incident either, as the Rangers have not put a 60 minute complete game together in what seems like a very long time.
If the Rangers go out Wednesday night and play like they did last night they will not win, but I am confident that will not be the case. For now, let's do our best to look forward to a home win, but this needed to be said. Let's Go Rangers!