New York Rangers Fall to Panthers in Shootout 3/17/17 Recap
I’m gonna preface this recap with the fact that I was most likely the source of the bad luck yesterday. The loss had nothing to do with the woeful defense and the Rangers’ inability to capitalize on their chances and clear the puck from their zone. This was my 2nd annual pilgrimage to MSG from Tampa, and it’s very clear that I’m a fan who should stay away as my record at MSG is now 0-1-1.
Rockin’ First Period
Seriously though, how exciting was that start? It’s wonderful to watch from the comfort of your couch, but it’s truly amazing to get fired up as part of the crowd and feel the energy around you. Mats Zuccarello and J.T. Miller got the Blueshirts up on the board with a 2-0 lead within the first 5 minutes of the game.
Zucc’s beautiful goal:
I really thought the momentum would keep rolling, but alas Florida took a time out, which evidently worked wonders for them.
Is there any better way to put it? The Rangers seem to fall apart come second period. Whether they forget how to play hockey or just feel as though they don’t have to, I don’t know… but it’s getting quite old. Imagine going into the playoffs with this problem, it’s gonna lead to a quick exit. The only probable thing that we have to look forward to as fans is that they are likely to stick in the first wild card position, which means more games on the road where we’re doing better.
The Rangers failed to score in the second period, and Florida managed to tie it up with goals from Huberdeau and Jokinen. The defense completely seemed to fall apart in the second period, which made it easier for Florida to score their goals, especially when Raanta is protecting one end of the net and we have a defenseman sliding on the ice in spectacular fashion (yes, I’m bitter).
The Panthers led for the first time in the third period due to another sprawling defenseman (see a trend here, yet?). Barkov scored nearly 8 minutes into the third to put the Rangers behind 3-2. Thankfully, Zuccarello’s second score of the night put them back on even footing and cemented one point for the night.
It’s high time (actually past that time) that we start looking at making some serious changes on the defense. It’s been a rocky season where the offense has been able to make up for the defense in many occasions, but coming up against some strong teams in the playoffs is sure to challenge that.
Final Thought: Six. Straight. Home. Losses. They’re on the road tomorrow, so here’s hoping for a win!