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Rangers Vs. Hurricanes: April's Fools

Notes from the Rangers win over the Hurricanes.

James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

- Look I get it, this was more or less a meaningless game. The Rangers would have to do something spectacular to not make the playoffs this year, and at this point it might actually be better for them to fall to the first wild card spot to meet with Florida (or even Tampa Bay) than Pittsburgh. No matter what angle you take for this, though, last night was not a good look for a team that's supposed to be contending for the Stanley Cup.

- I get a lot of heat from people who tell me that I hate the team. Most of the time I don't really care what people say about me and I ignore it, but I do want to comment on that particular insult. I think I'm actually quite optimistic, and this site is a good reflection of what myself and the staff think about the team. Go through the 2014 archives and find me five negative stories. Actually, try to find three. It's all about the team at hand. I call it like I see it. And if that makes people (not 99% of you) mad then go follow someone else. Plenty of sheep out there who you can nod your head to.

- With that being said, the Rangers would need to go on an enormous PDO binge and have Henrik Lundqvist play God to have any shot at the Stanley Cup. Not out of the realm of possibilities, but also not very likely.

- The Rangers have now fallen to the third seed in the Metro, which puts them against Pittsburgh but on the road. Normally that's not a bad thing, but the Rangers are 18-17-5 on the road this year. Yikes.

- For a Rangers team fighting for their playoff lives, I'm not thrilled with that effort -- well, outside of the team's 20 minutes in the second period. But that has to be sustainable hockey at this point, and the Rangers haven't shown that at all.

- I actually think that game is a harbinger of what the playoffs are going to look like. The Rangers unable to keep the puck out of their own net and the offense trying desperately to compensate for the defensive mistakes. Having said that ...

- When Marc Staal and Dan Girardi aren't the guys getting roasted over and over again, the Rangers have an enormous problem. That was not Ryan McDonagh's best game, nor was it Kevin Klein's (not to say they were awful). That's something that can't happen in the playoffs. When 33% of your defense can't be expected to be relied on, the other guys need to pick up the slack. Especially McDonagh and Klein.

- Rick Nash sort of looks like he's going to be a monster in the playoffs. Ditto for Chris Kreider and Derek Stepan. I'd say the same for Mats Zuccarello and Derick Brassard but that's not a new thing.

- Eric Staal's return was a really cool thing, and the Carolina Hurricanes were about as classy as could be with his ceremony. I'm not sure it should have distracted the Rangers all that much, but how else can you explain that horrific first period.

- Kevin Hayes didn't score so I'm assuming he's going to be sitting for Oscar Lindberg because that's totally how these problems are going to be fixed. I'm about as bitter of the Hayes treatment/media narratives as anything this year. That's saying something.

- Since we're being snarky: Keith Yandle notched his 40th assist last night. But, you know, he hasn't been the offensive force the organization envisioned when they traded for him. Bluuuuurrrrrrgggggg.

- No that game wasn't an April fools joke. That's actually how the team came out against a non-playoff team with a chance to clinch the playoffs. Sigh.