The New York Rangers (24-21-3) lost to the Tampa Bay Lightning (28-15-4) by the score of 2-1, tonight. For a box score, go to Yahoo! Sports.
…listen, I'm never happy when the Rangers lose, but overall I can't kill them for the effort tonight. They generated offense, caused turnovers and played a physical game. Unfortunately, sometimes you run into a goaltender who has your number in the midst of a Vezina Trophy caliber season.
…now having said that, I felt like their battle level wasn't as high as we've seen the last 10 games. Which is unacceptable considering they were facing a team playing the second game of a back-to-back. Tonight was one of those nights that the top players needed to find a way to find the back of the net and they didn't.
…and we have a late Oscars entry for best male actor: Ben Bishop. Completely changed the outcome of the game.
…have I mentioned that Del Zotto's problems are mental? Didn't look very comfortable on the left side on that second goal.
…reports were that AV was irate after that second goal. Wonder if it was due to the defensive breakdown or he ran out of gum.
…i could have sworn Stepan ended his holdout. (H/T reader JPG)
…i thought the fourth line was real good tonight, not sure why none of them saw more than nine minutes. Could have used a couple of extra "car bombs" out there.
…i tell you what, if Richards keeps this up, I might actually feel bad when he's bought out this offseason. Actually, no I won't.
…god, I love that set play for Kreider off the left wing boards. Speaking of Kreider, kudos to him for being the only Ranger who tried to get Bishop off his game by chopping down on his glove hand in the second period. Would have liked to see Carcillo jawing with the Lightning goaltender a bit.
…a month ago, I would have thought Stralman was a shoo-in to be re-signed this offseason. Not so sure anymore.
…vintage Girardi/McDonagh as they combined for 50 minutes of ice time and nine blocked shots. Girardi is making Rangers management's decision to either trade or re-sign him very difficult.
…Nash wasn't aggressive going to the net and he didn't generate offense. Funny how that happens.
…god damn power play not able to convert in a big spot!!!! Can you say officially spoiled?
…despite not having their 'A' game tonight, the Rangers would have run the current third seed in the Eastern Conference out of the building without Bishop's heroics. Which is further proof that the Rangers are just as good, if not better than, every team in the East not named Penguins or Bruins. If they can add a scorer at the deadline, this team could be dangerous.
…off tomorrow then Detroit in town Thursday night.
Post game Vino…