The Rangers have been playing with fire all year and last night they finally got burned.
Throughout the season, the Blueshirts five-on-five play has made-up for a dreadful power play, but last night their ineptness finally caught up to them.
When you’re defeated by a single goal, the glaring deficiencies with the man advantage stick out like a sore thumb.
And boy are the power play numbers ugly (via New York Post): 1-for-24 in their last 10 games, 2-for-37 in the last 15 and 4-for-55 in the last 21 matches. They have also failed on their last 26, 5-on-4 advantages covering a stretch of 45:23.
And John Tortorella looks completely lost on how to fix it. When asked what can be done to rectify this by Sam Rosen after an 0-for-3 performance during the Blueshirts 4-3 shootout loss to the Devils last night, the Rangers coach had no answers.
How about traffic in front of the net? How about Carl Hagelin on the side boards? How about players actually moving?
And if none of these things can be accomplished with the current roster, then the Blueshirts need to bring someone in. Whether it’s a trade or recalling Mats Zuccarello.
This team has had too special of a season up until this point to have it ultimately undermined by the power play.
As the season grows shorter the games will become tighter, meaning the power play will become that much more significant. And that’s even before the playoffs start when every power play opportunity could ultimately determine a game or series.
Allowing this power play to flounder for the rest of the season is not an option, as it will not only lead to the downfall of this amazing ride, but most likely Tortorella’s tenure as Rangers head coach.