After dictating most of the play in the first period against Tampa last night, the Rangers held a 1-0 lead coming out of the first intermission and had to be feeling good about their chances of coming away with a victory.
But that all changed just 59 seconds into the frame, when Ryan Callahan was penalized for an apparent high stick on Lightning goaltender Ben Bishop...
However, upon further review, the infraction was actually caused when Tampa defenseman Eric Brewer lifted the Ranger captain's stick (via New York Post)...
“The play was dead so I’m not really holding my stick too tight, and even Brewer apologized and said it was him. It’s a tough one to take.”
Add in a Bishop dive that would have made Greg Louganis proud along with a referee who was obviously not paying attention and Callahan found himself guilty by association.
And as is always the case after a dreadful call, Victor Hedman tied the game for Tampa on the ensuing power play.
...i hate making excuses, but it's amazing how often the Rangers have been on the wrong end of a controversial call this season. From the three "distinct kicking motion" goal reviews to the numerous early whistles negating goals to a late whistle resulting in a tally against Talbot. The refereeing against the Blueshirts has been brutal this season.
...the best referees are never memorable, and unfortunately I'm noticing the guys in the zebra outfits way too often this season.
Even with the phantom penalty, the Rangers were still tied and had plenty of time to take the lead back. Right? Wrong. As just nine seconds after the Hedman goal, this happened...
According to Alain Vigneault after the game, the goal was a result of a set play that Tampa frequently uses, which he had warned the team about that morning (via New York Post)...
“It’s something that we talked about [Tuesday] morning and showed on video. They did the exact same play three shifts before, as a matter of fact.”
Immediately after the goal, MSG Network's John Giannone pointed out that it was the angriest he had seen Vigneault on the bench this season.
...i don't blame Vigneault for being irate. The coaching staff takes the time and effort to create a scouting report and apparently the players just ignore it.
...two steps forward, three steps back for Del Zotto. It's a lot easier to forgive physical errors, but not recognizing a set play that was covered that same day is unacceptable. Moore deserves some criticism on the play but Kucherov came from Del Zotto's side of the ice and deserves the majority of the blame.
"Brewer apologized and said it was him."
I assume Callahan means that Brewer apologized to Bishop within earshot of him. I couldn't imagine apologizing to an opponent for helping draw a penalty!
AV needs to take some heat for the game last night. After a slow start to the first...the Rangers carried the play for the majority of that period...and had a 1-0 lead to show for it.
The Lightning are in the second game of a back to back...and it showed as the 1st period went along.
So, you have the lead and momentum going into the 2nd. What should be the goal? Keeping the momentum.Coach AV...should have told the 4th line...."puck drop for the 2nd...you boys on are in the ice...I want 6 hits when you get back the bench"........
Keep the momentum...you had a tired Lightning team in the 1st......you hammer them in the 2nd physically...wear them down. Now, could the 4th line have taken a penalty if they started the second.period which leads to the Lightning tying the game? Possible.
But maybe if you start line 4th in the 2nd...and you stress that you want that shift to be a hard-hitting shift...maybe Tampa Bay takes a retaliatory penalty in response to the physical play....we go the PP...and we score?
And after the Lightning did score on the PP....4th line should have been out very next shift...hitting hard....to get the momentum back.
Anyways...AV...utilize your players properly. Sometimes a shift or two is all it takes to change the flow and momentum of a game.
MDZ was cheating for a play up the boards, bad play by him for sure. Moore was playing his guy man to man when the puck was on the other side of the ice, another head scratching play. Hank tried to poke check instead of his normal patience, yet another bad play. There's plenty of blame to go around. You can blame MDZ all you want but it would be the same a blaming Eli Manning for an interception when his receiver runs the wrong route and his running back misses a block.
IMHO, don't think the refs have a "NYR bias". We have the value of instant replay and camera angles from everywhere. The refs, unless it's a goal review, do not. I used to ref rec leagues, and it's an extremely hard sport to officiate, if not one of the hardest. With that said, I can't stand Rooney and the new wave of refs. Bring back Fraser & Koharski!
Del Zotto reflects the overall malaise of the defense. He has a soft, innaccurate shot. He has two goals. Stralman has no goals and only four assists in 47 games. Girardi has three goals. Moore has two. Staal has two. Falk, Dmac and Allen zero. Even with McD's seven goals the D's total is a pathetic 16 goals. Jeez, Hedman, Krug, Weber and others have 10 alone. How can the Ranger's ever compete with the big boys until they upgrade this mess? We need to get some bombers on the blue
@TheNYRBlog Fact that DZ saw that set play on film b4 game and still blew it is pathetic
The Del Zotto mistake is part of the effort problem with the game last night.When the coach says something you listen.Its not like AV doesn't know his stuff-he's a strategist- so MDZ -or anyone else not paying careful attention to it is a big deal.Just laziness.A pro team doesn't need that.
Watching Bishop, it made me wonder when they are going to heighten and widen the nets. I guess it will take a 6:10/400 pound widebody who covers every inch of the net without having to move before they make an overdue change.
@TheNYRBlog over in 9 seconds is a bit much. NYR played well in 3rd; had chances hit a post and a great job Bishop.
The way that DZ, Moore and Stralman are playing, I don't like the idea of moving Girardi even with an expiring contract. He has picked up his game lately. It would cause problems on defense that we can't afford if we have any chance of beating the Bruins or Pens in a 7 game series.
Lets move on... if we play this well every night we will win more games than we lose. Just ran into a hot goaltender... it happens. You cannot tell me we werent the better team for the majority of that game. Red Wings thursday is a big one... lets get two points
Based on how the night was going, I was 100% certain that they were somehow going to award that 3rd goal to Tampa late in the 3rd when the puck came out from under Hank and the whistle blew as Tampa tapped it in.
Also wasn't surprised when they didn't call Bishop for tripping Zucc in the final minute. Talk about sending a guy head first into the boards...
@TheNYRBlog Now, I am not saying it was MDZ's fault ... but he was on the ice on the game loser. Just saying.
@McPhee37On target observations.....on target tactics.....but the wrong Coach. That Coach was run out of town according to the NY Media. I am not an AV fan and I do respect his winning record and his coaching successes. Your suggestions, as well founded as they are, are not part of AV's coaching repertoire.
It simply looked like a bad read by DZ. He skated outside the dots and did not adjust or react quickly enough when his man cut to the center. He could not catch him and it cost us. If the play was reviewed pre-game he should have been between the dots and ready to step up on their center.
Don't agree. I've been watching strange calls or non calls against the Rangers for years. I believe it's the Canadian bloc of refs that show anti new york bias. Did you notice how Zucc was tripped by Bishop in the last minute? No call! PS Kerry Fraser was the worst!
You lost me at "Koharski"... :)
Can't believe he did not make the olympic team
Or someone will do what Dana Carvey suggested on SNL (the episode Gretzky hosted way back when). "They could get a little midget, and he could sit inside the net holding up a big board. It would be impossible to score!"
@EdMo9974 But at the end of the day the game was decided in those nine seconds.
@TheSandmanEsq Kucherov came down his wing. He should have recognized the set play.
I was not a fan of bringing in AV. The last staw for me is when Dorsett was injured early on....and AV left his team totally unprotected...allowing players like Boyle and Falk to get their face pummeled. Thankfully, neither player suffered an serious injury.
I also wanted Totrs gone...because he lost site of the physical intangibles of the Game.....he screwed up the Sens series....and the Bruins series was a disaster...waited til we we're down 3-0 until he even tried to physically match-up with the Bruins 4th line.
Get me an old-school hockey coach...someone who understand the physical side of the game.......and Ill be a happy camper
Agree with both of you. What's the purpose of having tough guys/4th line if you don't use them when it's necessary ? AV never throws them out there as a "we need to respond" or "set a tone line", he just uses them when the other three lines need rest. I guess as long as AV is in charge we will have to accept that the physical game is not a priority in his system.
@TheNYRBlog fair point...Argh You just reignited my DelZotto rage!
@TheNYRBlog@TheSandmanEsqThere is always a predictability to how a hockey player plays the game. There is always a pattern to the way a player thinks and plays on the ice. Last night was a blatant example of the kind of thinking and the kind of behavior that has NYR looking to trade MDZ and is also why no one wants him.
Could you imagine a Coach taking a specific block of time out in practice and videoing a specific dangerous play of an opponent that the team is going to face the NEXT day and then during the game he reminds the team from the bench of the same dangerous play and this is how MDZ respond's to his coach............serious focus issues for Michael.....eh?
@TheNYRBlog I agree completely, I was just trying to be "nice." Given how mad AV was about the play, think he's a healthy scratch?
Detroit is weak in front of their net and in the high slot. If we don't take advantage of that we don't win.
@TheNYRBlog literally cost them the game. I hope they play Detroit strong and get a blow out win, I think they need it to roll again.
@TheSandmanEsq Not sure, he has been better lately, but a mental error like that is just inexcusable.