by Patrick Hoffman on 11/13/09 at 01:49 PM ET
Sitting down at my computer this morning, I was trying to figure out how to describe last night’s performance by the New York Rangers against the Atlanta Thrashers.
Why did they lose? Who played well despite the loss? Who played poorly in the losing effort? Why did Henrik Lundqvist have to allow that fourth goal?
As it turns out, Scott over at Scotty Hockey describe the team’s loss perfectly:
Don’t let the 5-3 scoreline or the 36-27 shot total fool you, the Rangers were dominated tonight by the Atlanta Thrashers. Yep, the Atlanta Thrashers.
It was atrocious, and yet the Blueshirts were a post and a crossbar away from winning the game. I guess that is a good thing, but walking out of the Garden I don’t feel the least bit good about the Ranger performance. Atlanta kept them bottled up in their own end for long stretches, had little trouble breaking up most Ranger rushes and kept the shots away from the danger zones. You would think that after finally getting a few days off to practice the Rangers would be better, not worse. You would think that.
Efforts like this make you wonder if the team has tuned out Tortorella already or simply have no clue or capability to play his hard-nosed, open ice hockey. The slot remains empty with no one paying the price to go to the net, the defense isn’t helping the offense and isn’t playing defense, and players are passing up good shots while taking bad ones.
Click here for more from Scotty.
Once again, the Blueshirts are being extremely inconsistent. It’s win one, lose a few, win one, lose a few, etc. Something has to give here.
Sure, the team is without their captain, Chris Drury, and Brandon Dubinsky but you need to find a way to win a hockey game. The Rangers could have just as easily won last night’s tilt had it not been for some careless plays and untimely penalties.
Tomorrow afternoon, they’ll take on the Ottawa Senators and hopefully they will be able to put it all together for a win.
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Patrick has a tremendous passion for hockey. Besides covering the Rangers and the NHL for Kukla's Korner, you can also find Patrick's work over at Sportsnet.ca, The Red Light District Hockey Blog, NHL Home Ice, and Liam Maguire's Ultimate Hockey web site.
Prior to writing for the above mentioned outlets, you could find Patrick's musings at hockey web sites/outlets such as TheHockeyNews.com, TheFourthPeriod.com, Spector's Hockey, Hokeja Vestnesis, Blueshirt Bulletin, SNYRangersBlog.com and many more.
For questions, comments and hip checks, feel free to e-mail Patrick at firstname.lastname@example.org.