by Patrick Hoffman on 02/21/12 at 11:39 PM ET
This is what many New York Rangers’ fans are probably wondering about after watching the Blueshirts get shutout by the Pittsburgh Penguins tonight by a score of 2-0.
The club’s offense took 27 shots, all of which were turned away with relative ease by Penguins’ netminder Marc-Andre Fleury. The Rangers made it easy for Fleury by shooting directly into him and not getting to the real scoring areas in order to put the puck in the net.
The score could have been much worse if not for the play of Rangers’ netminder Henrik Lundqvist. Lundqvist turned in another strong performance for his hockey club in turning away 29 of 31 Penguins’ shots. Lundqvist was especially good in the first period in stopping all 11 Penguins’ shots as the Rangers came out flat.
The truth of the matter is that this was more than likely coming for the Rangers. They were terrible against the Chicago Blackhawks last Thursday night, barely beat the Columbus Blue Jackets on Sunday night and were shutout tonight in Pittsburgh.
There is obviously no doubt that this team needs to score more goals. The team cannot continue to rely on Lundqvist to be perfect every single game because sooner or later, it is going to come back and bite the team in a bad way.
The team also needs to start clicking on the power play. The club was 0-3 tonight and is 0-12 in their last three games. Come playoff time, special teams is going to be a huge factor and if the Rangers’ cannot get their power play going, it is going to hurt them.
The Rangers will be back in action on Friday night in Long Island to take on the Islanders. The Islanders are always up for games against the Blueshirts so this is not a game that the Rangers can afford to take lightly.
Hopefully, the Rangers will be more prepared come puck drop on Friday night because things are not going to get any easier for the Blueshirts going forward.
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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.