The New York Rangers followed up back-to-back shutout losses with a game where they only managed 15 shots on goal. To be fair they also scored two goals, but their power play was still ineffective, they weren’t able to swing the contest’s momentum whenever they caught a break, and they consequently lost their third straight contest.
Adding to that was the fact that Rick Nash was booed by his own fans in response to his inability to score in the 2014 playoffs.
With the team one game away from elimination, Rangers coach Alain Vigneault asked for the Rangers fans’ support.
“We may not look it, but we’re trying our guts off here,” Vigneault told ESPN’s Katie Strang.
At the same time, forward Brad Richards felt Games 3 and 4 at Madison Square Garden “could not have gone worse.”
Defenseman Ryan McDonagh added that the Rangers’ play was “unacceptable,” per Newsday’s Steve Zipay.
Until the Rangers are eliminated, anything is possible. They only need to look at the Los Angeles Kings to be reminded of that.
Game 5 will be in Pittsburgh on Friday.
Following his stunning 41-game suspension, it looks like Raffi Torres has at least one former teammate in his corner.
We haven’t yet seen how the San Jose Sharks or the NHLPA are reacting to the league’s hammer-dropping decision to punish Torres for his Torres-like hit on Jakob Silfverberg, but Jason Demers decided to put in a good word for Torres tonight.
It was a simple message: “#FreeTorres.”
Demers, now of the Dallas Stars, was once with Torres and the Sharks. (In case this post’s main image didn’t make that clear enough already.)
Perhaps this will become “a thing” at some point.
So far, it seems like it’s instead “a thing (that people are making fun of).”
… You get the idea.
The bottom line is that there are some who either a) blindly support Torres because they’re Sharks fans or b) simply think that the punishment was excessive.
The most important statement came from the Department of Player Safety, though.
Those who feel as though the Boston Bruins may rebound – John Tortorella, maybe? – likely rest some of their optimism on the back of a healthy Zdeno Chara.
It’s possible that he’s merely limping into what may otherwise be a healthy 2015-16 season, but it’s definitely looking like a slow start thanks to a lower-body injury.
The latest sign of a bumpy beginning came on Monday, as several onlookers (including CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty) pointed out that Chara was listed on injured reserve.
As Haggerty notes, that move is retroactive to Sept. 24, so his status really just opens up options for the Bruins.
Still … it’s a little unsettling, isn’t it?
The Bruins likely realize that they need to transition away from their generational behemoth, but last season provided a stark suggestion that may not be ready yet. Trading Dougie Hamilton and losing Dennis Seidenberg to injury only make them more dependent on the towering 38-year-old.
This isn’t really something to panic about, yet it might leave a few extra seats open on the Bruins’ bandwagon.