Thursday, January 31, 2013
Rapid Reaction: Penguins 3, Rangers 0
By Matt Ehalt
The Rangers will have to cope without Ryan Callahan for the next few weeks and they didn't get off to a good start as they fell to Pittsburgh 3-0 on Thursday night at Madison Square Garden. Callahan, who has a partially dislocated left shoulder, will be gone for 10 days to two weeks.
THE PITTS: The Penguins (4-3) continued their recent domination of the Rangers as they came into Madison Square Garden and won for the second time in two weeks. The Penguins have won six straight against New York, are 9-2 in their past 11 at Madison Square Garden, and are 24-10-8 in their past 42 versus the Blueshirts.
NO OFFENSE: After being blanked on Thursday, the Rangers now have just 16 goals through seven games. Thursday marked the fourth time this year the Rangers have scored two or fewer goals, and the third time that has occurred in the past four games.
OFF THE POST: Twice in the third period the Rangers managed to hit the post, coming so close to their first goal only to see it miss by mere inches. Following one of those post hits, the Penguins managed a breakaway to score their third goal.
DUMBNESS AGAIN: Last time out, Rangers head coach John Tortorella railed on Carl Hagelin for a too many men on the ice penalty. Thursday, it happened once again, resulting in a power-play goal for the Penguins. Tortorella wants a disciplined team and seeing his team make mistakes like that makes him livid.
STEP FOR STEPAN: With Callahan out, the Rangers need players to step up and fill his void. One of those guys is Callahan's second-line mate, Derek Stepan, and he played aggressively Thursday. He had a team-leading four shots through the first two periods, which is more than he's had in any game this year. He's still searching for his first goal of the year.
GOOD KING: Can't place this one on Henrik Lundqvist as he had a good game in goal. The second goal came on a deflection and the third goal was the product of a breakaway. Lundqvist played well but the Penguins were able to capitalize on their opportunities while the Rangers just couldn't get the big goal.
NO POWER: The Rangers hoped they would be able to build off scoring just their third power-play goal on Tuesday, but Thursday proved to be the same old story. The Rangers were 0-for-4 and now are a miserable 3-for-28 on the season with the man advantage. The Rangers just can't consistently pressure the net during the power plays, such as during their second power play in the second period when they didn't even manage a shot.
UP NEXT: The Rangers travel to Tampa Bay to face the Lightning on Saturday at 7 p.m.