Notes From The New York Rangers' Loss To The Pittsburgh Penguins
- I suppose there is no better place to start then with Brooks Orpik's knee-on-knee collision with Derek Stepan. Was it a dirty hit? Yes. Was it intentional? Sure looked like it. Will Orpik be suspended for more than one game (or at all)? I highly doubt it. I do, however, love the Jekyll and Hyde act from the Pittsburgh Penguins and their fans. These are the same players and fans who were furious that the Philadelphia Flyers had the audacity to even touch Sidney Crosby. The fans who fully supported their coach throwing his hissy fit with the media. Then they all suddenly forget about past incidents and remain silent or, in most cases, in complete defense of Orpik after everything was said and done. Am I surprised about that? Absolutely not. Imagine the situation was reversed, imagine what their reaction would be? I wonder what the punishment would be too.
- I wouldn't be too worried about this clunker of a game. The New York Rangers didn't exactly have much to play for and it really seemed as though the players decided to take the night off as a whole. I know it shouldn't happen this close to the playoffs, but it does. They will be fine when the games count. They will probably be fine by the time the Washington Capitals roll into town.
Join me after the jump for more.
- Want another example of why Ryan Callahan is the best captain in the NHL? Even when his team has nothing in the tank, even when his team is playing like crap he has his motor running. Has he ever taken a shift off? Do you ever remember walking away from a game thinking, "Callahan didn't give me his all tonight." Didn't think so.
- If you need another reason why the Rangers would have serious issues if Henrik Lundqvist was indeed injured (and I'm sure you don't) Thursday night was it. Martin Biron had a pretty rough night. He was brilliant to start the season, then trailed off midway through before picking things up again (although not to his early season level). That spells inconsistency, something your goalie simply can't be in the playoffs.
- The Rangers' defense really, really took the night off. The offense seemed passive and unwilling to go into the tough areas of the ice, yes, but the entire defense looked like they wanted nothing to do with physical play. Although, to be honest, Callahan was the only player who seemed willing to engage with the Penguins on a shift-by-shift basis.
- Although the entire team was off their game as a whole, I loved both Brandon Dubinsky and Brian Boyle Thursday night. Both players notched goals and worked hard most of the night. In a game like that, that's pretty much all you can ask for.
- I am, as you probably guessed, quite in favor of what John Tortorella said after the game about the Penguins. The fact of the matter is, Tortorella is just publicly saying things other teams coaches have been whispering for a long time. When there is smoke, there is usually fire.