by Patrick Hoffman on 02/12/11 at 02:45 PM ET
Last night’s game against the Atlanta Thrashers was one that the New York Rangers needed to come away with two points.
Simply put, they did not and managed to extend their winless streak to six games. It was a game that was essentially worth four points because it was against the Thrashers. With the loss, the Carolina Hurricanes are only three points behind in what has become an extremely interesting Eastern Conference race.
In their winless streak, the Blueshirts have lost four in a row. The team still holds the seventh spot in the Eastern Conference but are now just two points in front of the Thrashers, who hold the eighth spot in the Eastern Conference standings.
With a 2-1 lead in the third period, all the Rangers needed to do was play tight defense, stay out of the box, get big saves from Henrik Lundqvist and at the same time, push for an insurance goal. The Rangers were able to do three out of four and the one exception was one that hurt them the most.
Rangers’ defenseman Michael Del Zotto took a tripping penalty in the third period when he was not able ot control a bouncing puck along the boards behind the net and had to trip Nik Antropov as he came in alone on Lundqvist. The Thrashers were able to get a power play goal from Evander Kane, his second of the game, which gave the Thrashers a 3-2 lead and ultimately, the hockey game.
When the game was 2-1 Rangers, Blueshirts’ forward Marian Gaborik had a chance to extend the lead to 3-1 when he was awarded a penalty shot after being hooked on a breakaway. Unfortunately, Gaborik was robbed by Thrashers’ netminder Ondrej Pavelec and the save ended up turning the third period around for the Thrashers.
It was a disappointing loss for the Blueshirts as once again, they had played more than well enough to win. The team got goals from Marc Staal and Brandon Dubinsky and got terrific goaltending from Lundqvist (32 saves). Unfortunately, it just did not hold up.
The team will be back in action on Sunday afternoon against the Pittsurgh Penguins at Madison Square Garden. The Penguins lost to the New York Islanders by a score of 9-3 last night and will surely be looking to right the ship against the Blueshirts.
Will the Penguins manage to extend the Rangers’ losing streak to seven games or will the Blueshirts be able to right the ship and get back on the winning track? We’ll know the answer by 6 p.m. tomorrow evening.
Filed in: | Goal Line Report | Permalink
Tags: atlanta+thrashers, brandon+dubinsky, evander+kane, henrik+lundqvist, marc+staal, marian+gaborik, michael+del+zotto, new+york+islanders, new+york+rangers, ondrej+pavelec, pittsburgh+penguins
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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.