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Rangers Vs. Islanders: Panic! (Don't Actually Panic)

Notes from the Rangers loss to the Islanders.

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- I will be honest with you, I knew that was going to happen. Not that the feeling was anything groundbreaking (or that I'm some type of psychic) but this game was staring me in the face as the Rangers were going on their run. Right off a three-game Western swing and against an emotionally charged team? Yeah, that has "trap game" written all over it.

- I do 100% agree the Islanders are a very good team. I also 100% do not believe that game was any true indication the Islanders are that much better than the Rangers. The Rangers are coming off 12 wins in 13 games and were bound to have a stinker. It's not fun when it comes against that team, but it was bound to happen.

- Quick note on the crowd: If you were one of the people who booed last night ... why? The Rangers just ripped off one of the best streaks of hockey they've ever had in their history, and you're booing them because of one game? They deserved a lot better than that.

- Another reason why I'm not overly worried about the performance? The Rangers didn't look like themselves at all. They were sluggish, they didn't hustle, they weren't fast and they couldn't break out of their own zone to save their own lives. That's not the way they've been playing. Not even close. Isn't it far more likely they were just out of gas rather than they suddenly suck again? It looked like they were still on the runway in San Jose.

- The second period might have actually been the worst period I've ever seen live in my life. And I was at a lot of games during the dark ages. Seriously, it was awful. The Rangers couldn't get the puck out of their own zone, they were manhandled in the corners and in front of the net and they got thoroughly out possession. I joked that even if the Islanders' blue line was the goal the Rangers still would have been losing at the end of the period. I don't think I was wrong.

- Speaking of, the second biggest negative to come from this game (in my book) is I think I can hear Tanner Glass' entrance music playing. Remember: The Ranger's weren't bullied last night. They got their lunch served to them in terms of possession. And you don't fix that problem with you know who. You don't, you don't, you don't.

- The biggest negative is the Derek Stepan injury. I've seen a few concerns about a broken wrist. That would not be good.

- Positives? Rick Nash was good. Henrik Lundqvist was really good outside of that third goal. Cam Talbot was good.  Derick Brassard was sort of OK. So was Mats Zuccarello. Ryan McDonagh was OK. Kevin Klein was good.

- In a game that you would expect to be the most physically punishing of the season (and why any team would want to carry an enforcer) there really wasn't a lost of physicality until the final scuffle that had nothing to do with the game. I'd still rather have skill on my bench than nothing but toughness.