Rangers lose in Carolina, relax…it happens

Lundqvist and Rangers fall in Carolina (AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker)

Lundqvist and Rangers fall in Carolina (AP Photo/Karl B DeBlaker)

Did you think the Rangers would dominate every game?

The Blueshirts went into Carolina and lost 3-2 to a lesser opponent. It certainly wasn’t their best performance and the truth is, Jeff Skinner had a great game scoring all three Canes’ goals.

Matter of fact, if you rely on corsi, the Rangers had the edge in play 55 to 45. Now I ask you, did that look like a game the Rangers held the edge in play? Truth is, everytime they entered the zone it appeared that 2 Canes attacked the puck carrier at all times. Most of their shots came from low percentage shooting areas and they struggled to sustain pressure.

Henrik’s Struggling Stats

Last night’s line was once again unHank like. 3 goals on 21 shots for an .857 save percentage. In fairness, he never saw the game winner that traveled through 4 bodies, 3 of which were Rangers defenders. Still, he misplayed Skinner’s second goal which was on a partial breakaway.

This loss isn’t on Hank, you win as a team, you lose as a team. There were enough miscues on defense and offense that added up to a loss. I’m pointing this out because the Rangers are good now and will be even better when he heats up and starts stealing games.

Lundqvist stats (espn)

Lundqvist stats (espn)

I wrote about his slow starts and after 7 games he has a save percentage around .901, which is 19 points less than his career sv%. Expect these numbers to climb come November.

Time to reinsert Clendening

Late in the third period with the Rangers down 1 and desperate to get a goal, they got pinned in their own zone for a solid minute plus. Somehow, it was Dan Girardi and Nick Holden on the ice.

It was painfully obvious that even if that wasn’t meant to be a pairing due to a messed up line change, they should never both be on the ice together. Which leads to the argument that having both of them in the lineup at the same time makes no sense.

The Rangers will face a much better team in Tampa on Sunday and it would be wise to reinsert the better puck moving defenseman in Adam Clendening over Nick Holden.

McIlrath Clears Waivers…I’m stunned

Yesterday, Dylan McIlrath cleared waivers and I must admit I was surprised. Have the Rangers mismanaged their asset so badly that not a single team felt he was worth a flyer? Or is he just not an NHL defenseman?

My thought process is that he’s a defenseman for a different era. The game has transitioned away from having a few hard-nosed defenseman to a league full of puck movers. Maybe he can hone his game in Hartford and find a second chance in the NHL or maybe that’s just who he is, an AHL defensemen.

Anthony Scultore has been covering the New York Rangers and the NHL since 2014. His work also appears at... More about Anthony Scultore

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