Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 05/05/14 at 09:44 AM ET
from Arthur Staple of Newsday,
It certainly appeared as if one of the three 12-game streaks coming into Game 2 would not make it to unlucky 13.
There was Sidney Crosby's 12-game playoff goal drought, as well as Rick Nash's 12-gamer in the postseason. And, of course, the Rangers' absurd 12-game losing streak when leading a playoff series.
Amazingly, all three are intact, on to unlucky 13. Truth be told, though, only Crosby was unlucky. Nash and the Rangers earned their continued slides, with all 18 Rangers skaters hanging Henrik Lundqvist out to dry in their 3-0 loss to the Penguins Sunday night.
Lundqvist was the only Ranger who seemed willing or interested in shutting down Crosby, who had six shots on goal -- more than Nash's entire line -- and looked an awful lot like the best player in the world, not the scuffling captain about whom rampant questions and injury speculation had been asked and discussed throughout this city for the past few days.
Crosby put on a show without getting on the scoresheet. Evgeni Malkin ably rode shotgun, throwing his weight around, setting up the first Penguins goal and sealing the win with an empty-net goal. The Penguins' best players were dominant; the Rangers' best were not, with Nash opting to pass rather than shoot on his best chance of the night during one of the Rangers' three power plays in the opening 7:04 of the game.
from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,
The Rangers’ top guys — well, if it is too harsh to call them no-shows for Game 2, they were other than Lundqvist — were no factors whatsoever. Rick Nash continued to go scoreless in the playoffs despite manufacturing several chances. Derek Stepan and Marty St. Louis, Nash’s linemates on what is allegedly the Blueshirts’ top unit, had absolutely miserable games as their scoreless streaks reached six games apiece.
“It’s frustrating and it’s disappointing,” Nash, who has one goal in 21 playoff games as a Ranger, told The Post. “I got chances but that isn’t good enough.
“I have to up my game and work to put pucks in the net.”
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