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2013-14 Playoffs


On MSG, after game five of the Stanley Cup Final, Joe Micheletti said that the Rangers run to the Stanley Cup Final was an "extremely valuable" learning experience and the Rangers young players like Derek Stepan, Chris Kreider and Carl Hagelin will get better because of it.

Micheletti also referenced how Mike Keenan said during his week on MSG that the Rangers were a young team that was learning what it meant to play in the Stanley Cup Final. He said that one lesson learned is how to play in the third period and "they learned an awful lot playing."

Arthur Staple writes that the Rangers went as far as heart and effort could take them but lost to a team that specializes in "will" and wearing teams down. Staple says that with the Rangers heart, skill and goaltending they have the ingredients of a championship team and must learn from their experiences this year. (Newsday)

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Following the season, Ryan McDonagh explained why he thought this Rangers team was able to make the run that they did.

McDonagh said, "there are no egos on this team, this group is all about finding ways to win. Everyone bought into their role, when we were on our game we were a tough team to beat and that is why everyone was excited." (Rangers)

Dominic Moore said recently that with Henrik Lundqvist in net and the Rangers depth at forward and defense, the team feels that they can build on this past season.

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Avoiding the Bruins in the Eastern Conference Final was a "blessing" for the Rangers and maybe cleared the way for them to reach the Stanley Cup Final. (Boston Herald)

Gordie Clark said that he was glad to see the Rangers face Montreal in the Eastern Conference Final rather than Boston because the Bruins had been playing "scary" hockey over the last 30 games of the season. (Boston Herald)

Clark added that the Bruins had been good against the Rangers the past two seasons, "they kicked the snot out of us for two years," and he was happy to see Montreal after the Rangers had been "smoked" by the Bruins recently. (Boston Herald)

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Glen Sather, Dominic Moore, Jim Schoenfeld, Derek Stepan and Marty St. Louis were in Albany yesterday and honored by the New York state legislature. (Lohud)

Sather said that he was/is very proud of this group of Rangers for how they battled and competed through adversity the whole season. He said they never gave up and became a very close "knit family." (Daily News)

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The Rangers will split $2.25 million amongst themselves for winning the Eastern Conference. (Chris Johnston)

The Kings will split $3.75 million amongst themselves for winning the Stanley Cup. (Chris Johsnton)

Each team that participates in the playoffs gets a certain amount of money based on how far they advance. A first round loss gives each team $250,000 to split, a second round loss gives $500,000 for the team to split, a loss in the Conference Finals gives each team $1.25 million to split. (Sportsnet)

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Michael Arace writes that if the Blue Jackets had had one more point in the regular season they would have played the Rangers in the first round, Flyers in the second round and Canadiens in the third round. (Columbus Dispatch)

He says that it's tough to assume that Columbus would have won games that weren't played but "I would submit that the Jackets were equal or superior to any of those teams six weeks ago." (Columbus Dispatch)

Arace writes that the Blue Jackets could have been where the Rangers are now and it's tough to watch knowing that.

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Alain Vigneault asked about the leadership of the Rangers after their game seven victory over the Penguins.

Vigneault said, "I mean, it comes from within the room. Guys within the room make sure that the standards that we set are upheld all the time, that the commitment that is needed on a daily basis, that is the veteran players who are extension of coaches and they know what coaches want and they have to make sure that it gets done and I have to say, we brought in Marty, lost our captain but other guys stepped to the front and assumed bigger roles in the leadership and then in this series, we said we needed a lot of bus drivers and had a lot of guys driving the bus."

Brian Boyle said on MSG that the Rangers leaders did a great job of getting everyone to buy in and get on the same page.

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Via Extra Skater:

5 on 5 Rangers shot attempts:

  • Total attempts: 34 for, 56 against
  • Attempts on goal or that miss the net: 29 for, 43 against
  • Shots on goal: 17 for, 32 against

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Brad Richards said after game seven that he has never been part of a team that has gone through what this team has in the past seven days. He said that no one gave this team a chance and that it's "unbelievable" how everyone does their parts.

Richards said on MSG that there has been so much evidence through the years that you should always keep believing. He added that you get one and it creates this feeling in the locker room that goes up and down the lineup.

Ryan McDonagh said on MSG that the Rangers felt they had another gear they could get and once they did they rode it all the way to win game seven.

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[polldaddy poll=8046816]

Alain Vigneault said after the game last night that both teams have a meaning to him. He started his career with Montreal and the Bruins beat the Canucks in seven for the Stanley Cup in 2011.

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12:34PM: The game may start at 12:30PM on Saturday. (Chris Johnston)

9:34AM: NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman announced on Boomer and Carton that Game One between the Rangers and either the Bruins or Habs, in either Boston or Montreal, will take place on Saturday afternoon. (TheeFanatic)

The game will be played at 1PM since NBC is broadcasting the Preakness at 4:30PM.

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Following the game on MSG, Alain Vigneault said "We didn't pick a good night to manage the puck the way we did. I don't want to take any credit away from Pittsburgh, they forced the play and played a solid game without the puck that forced us into a lot of those turnovers. Our puck management tonight and execution weren't very good and ultimately cost us the game."

Vigneault said that he couldn't explain the Rangers issues with the puck and that they picked a bad night in the playoffs to have a bad game.

Brad Richards said after the game that the Rangers didn't execute and that he couldn't give a read on the Penguins because they didn't test them. (Tal Pinchevsky)

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Through eight games, the Rangers have been outscored 12-5 in the second period.

By series/game the shots on goal in the second period have been:

Flyers:

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Via Extra Skater:

5 on 5 Rangers shot attempts:

  • Total attempts: 47 for, 32 against
  • Attempts on goal or that miss the net: 36 for, 17 against
  • Shots on goal: 24 for, 12 against

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Following the Rangers loss to the Bruins last year, John Tortorella said that he felt the Ranger had a lack of awareness for how much higher a level you need to play at when you get to the second round of the playoffs.

Tortorella added, "the thing I would like to have back is to get a jump on that Boston series. Boston was a better team then us and if people don?t think that they are crazy, because they were. I felt we could have gotten a jump on them if I had them better mentally prepared. Both teams in that first game, it was like they were playing an exhibition game. Both teams were coming off such a high. I said it on NBC and I think I got in trouble for it, they asked me what?s this and I said I didn?t know what it was because it was so laissez-faire, it was just like an exhibition game and I believed we could have gotten some momentum if we were better prepared. I didn?t do a good enough job.?

John Giannone asked some players after the game on Wednesday about getting ready and getting to another level in the second round.

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via Extra Skater:
  • At 5 on 5 the percentage of shot attempts that the Rangers control:? 51.7%
  • At 5 on 5 the percentage of shot attempts that the Rangers control at home: 54.1%
  • At 5 on 5 the percentage of shot attempts that the Rangers control on the road: 49%

Rangers all situations shot attempts:

  • Rick Nash: 51 attempts: 30 on goal, 10 missed, 11 blocked
  • Brad Richards: 47 attempts: 27 on goal, 10 missed, 10 blocked
  • Derek Stepan: 34 attempts: 15 on goal, 7 missed, 12 blocked
  • Mats Zuccarello: 32 attempts: 17 on goal, 6 missed, 9 attempts
  • John Moore: 26 attempts: 9 on goal, 2 missed, 15 blocked
Top 5 5 on 5 Team Shot Attempts When This Player Was On The Ice (all seven games) (Corsi):

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When asked about Henrik Lundqvist earlier today, Evgeni Malkin said that Lundqvist is his favorite goalie, "I like him a lot...he can stop every shot but if we screen him and go to the net...and get rebounds, it's a good chance to score." (Penguins)

Malkin clarified that Lundqvist is his favorite goalie to watch and when asked if he was his favorite goalie to shoot on said, "no...no." (Penguins)

Malkin has 20 goals and 19 assists against the Rangers in 42 games.

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10:31AM: This morning on TSN 1050,?Pierre McGuire was asked about the Rangers and Flyers game seven.

Pierre said, "The first goal really mattered, the energy in the building was great and then obviously the second goal really mattered for the Rangers. They had very good control of the game until the third period. Steve Mason stood on his head, it should have been 4 or 5 nothing for the Rangers. Philly battled back and when I went to Henrik Lundqvist after the game, he probably had two a good 2-3 minutes after the handshakes to chill out and he was still having a hard time breathing, that is how much duress he was under at the end of the game in the last ten minutes."

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https://twitter.com/EmpireStateBldg/status/461688969227284480
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6:54AM: The NHL has announced the second round schedule for the Rangers and Penguins:

  • Game 1: 5/2 7PM | Pittsburgh
  • Game 2: 5/4 7:30PM | Pittsburgh
  • Game 3: 5/5? 7:30PM |? Madison Square Garden
  • Game 4:? 5/7? 7:30PM | Madison Square Garden
  • *Game 5:? 5/9? TBA | Pittsburgh
  • *Game 6:? 5/11? TBA | Madison Square Garden
  • *Game 7:? 5/13? TBA |? Pittsburgh
*= if necessary

All games will be broadcast on the NBC Sports Network or NBC.

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http://web.sny.tv/media/video.jsp?content_id=32505713&topic_id=6479520


http://web.sny.tv/media/video.jsp?content_id=32511199

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11:02PM: Elliotte Friedman confirms that game two and three will be back to back on Sunday and Monday. (Twitter)

10:26PM: Game 3 is likely to be on Monday and game 4 on Wednesday, though it is not yet official. (Gross)

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10:45PM: From the Rangers:

Alain Vigneault on the series??In Game 7 like this, I would rather go with experience and he (Daniel Carcillo) had been in those situations before. He came up and did a good job, obviously scored that big goal for us. That and the fact that we got great fan support tonight ? they were behind us from start to finish and really helped us along. With four games in six nights it was a tough grind for both teams and they have some real quality players.?

Henrik Lundqvist on tonight?s game??It is a relief and it?s a proud feeling too. We talked about it during the series, it doesn?t matter if you feel like you?re the better team, it?s about finding ways to win hockey games, and that?s what we did today. We played outstanding. We created so many chances and we played really smart. We knew they were going to push in the third and they came pretty hard, but the puck management was really good. It?s just exciting, that last minute is so intense and you?re nervous but at the same time you just want to see what?s going to happen next. The final second, that?s probably the best feeling.?

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Alain Vigneault said today that everything that has happened already in the series is in the past and tonight just comes down to "winner take all." (NY Times)

Vigneault said that whichever team has their top players perform the best is "probably the team that's going to win this game." (NY Times)


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1:13PM: Ray Ferraro said on Leafs Lunch, "I look up at the stands and you can pick out the Rangers sweater in the sea of orange and I know you are supporting your team, but wear a jacket. By the third you have the booze factor, the gang mentality and I think it happened after the goal, so he probably jumped and cheered and group of knuckleheads confronted him. If there would have been more Ranger fans there it would have been completely out of control. "

7:37AM:

http://youtu.be/UsK387bxOjM

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The Rangers are scoreless in their last 20 PP opportunities and Dave Maloney said on MSG that two critical reasons why are the Rangers inability to win offensive zone faceoffs on the PP and then struggle to get back into the zone.

In the series the Rangers are 27 and 25 on PP faceoffs.

Last night the Rangers were 0-5 on the PP, with 11 shot attempts, 5 that were blocked, 2 that missed the net and 4 that were on goal.

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On the MSG post game show last night, EJ Hradek and Ron Duguay discussed potential lineup changed for the Rangers for game seven.

Hradek said, "I've been wondering what the lineup changes will be, I wonder if Alain Vigneault will put in Raphael Diaz because he has a big right hand shot from the point, I don't know how that impacts the rest of his group and who he would take out, I'm just wondering if he wants to have a different look for the PP, he can definitely shoot it and the Rangers will have PP opps. They need to find some confidence or do something different against their PK."

Then Al Trautwig asked about Dan Carcillo vs JT Miller and Duguay said, "you know what Carcillo brings, energy, but will he take a bad penalty. He has been good at not taking bad penalties. Has Miller given you enough as far as his play and his energy to keep him in there. Coach Vigneault is going to be thinking what he can do different."

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Following the Rangers loss last night, Marty St. Louis said on MSG that moving on from last night shouldn't be too hard for the Rangers and they just need to have amnesia and get ready to play game seven.

Alain Vigneault was asked how the Rangers turn the page so quickly and said, "do we have a choice? We are playing tomorrow night."

Marc Staal said on MSG that moving on isn't a challenge at all, "wake up tomorrow and it's game seven. Loser goes home and winner take it all."

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http://web.sny.tv/media/video.jsp?content_id=32484199&topic_id=6479520
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First Period:
  • PPG - Wayne Simmonds (2) Wrist shot - ASST: Scott Hartnell (3), Claude Giroux (3)
Second Period:
  • Wayne Simmonds (3) Wrist shot - ASST: Brayden Schenn (3)
  • Erik Gustafsson (1) Snap shot - ASST: Braydon Coburn (2)
  • PPG - Wayne Simmonds (4) Tip-in - ASST: Jakub Voracek (2), Claude Giroux (4)
Third Period:
  • Carl Hagelin (2) Wrist shot - ASST: Anton Stralman (1), Brad Richards (4)
  • EN - Claude Giroux (2) Wrist shot - ASST: NONE
  • Mats Zuccarello (2) Wrist shot - ASST: Benoit Pouliot (2), J.T. Miller (2)
Stats:

Adam's Thoughts:

  • The Rangers had this game in the first period when the Flyers were turning the puck over on every shift but the Rangers couldn't convert. They took a penalty and the Flyers scored but the Rangers still had chances. Things went bad in the second with some sloppy play, some bad penalties and the Rangers inability to score on their PP chances.
  • The PP was at its all time worst tonight. It's clear, as it has been as it each game passes, that the first game and that one goal in the second were an aberration and that the brutal stretch the PP had after the Olympic break is the reality. The Flyers made an adjustment and I am sure the Rangers have worked to counter that but it's just not working.
  • One thing about the core of this team is that they always bounce back after bad games. I expect that the Rangers best players will show up tomorrow and we will see big games from Brad Richards, Marty St. Louis and even Rick Nash.
  • Even with how the Rangers played tonight after the first period, I still firmly believe that the Rangers will win tomorrow and move on to the second round. I expected the teams to alternate wins up to game seven and I fully expect a much better, crisper Rangers team tomorrow. They let tonight slip away from them but they are bound to be better and rebound from the loss as they have each time the Flyers have beaten them in the series.
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3:38PM: Benoit Pouliot said today, "We don't want to go back and play at home, we want to finish it tonight. Our start will be critical. Hank has been standing on his head the whole series and we need to help him out. The less shots he gets the less time we spend in our zone, the better game we will have. (Rangers)

8:38AM: Alain Vigneault said yesterday that the Rangers focus tonight has to be on the right things and the right things are not the outcome but the process that it takes to get to the outcome.

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Marc Staal said after the Rangers beat the Flyers on Sunday that the team wants to end the series in game six in Philly but to do so they need a "killer instinct." (Rangers)

It's the same "killer instinct" that Staal mentioned game three for the Rangers.

Arthur Staple writes that Tuesday night should be a night where the Rangers finish off the Flyers and end a streak of 11 straight losses when the Rangers have a lead in a series. He says that while the 11 straight losses have come with different players and coaches, the one constant is a lack of "killer instinct."

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Via Extra Skater:

5 on 5 Rangers shot attempts:

  • Total attempts: 32 for, 36 against
  • Attempts on goal or that miss the net: 24 for, 29 against
  • Shots on goal: 19 for, 18 against

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Early in the second period, with a 1-0 lead and on the PP, Marty St. Louis put a loose puck in the crease behind Steve Mason but the play was blown dead by referee Justin St. Pierre.

St. Pierre's line of sight to the puck was blocked by Mason's pad and the play was blown dead as St. Louis was putting the puck in the net.

St. Louis said that he was disappointed when he heard the whistle, before he put the puck in the net, but that you have to refocus for the next shift and not let it have an impact. (Daily News)

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Game Six between the Rangers and Flyers will be at 7:30PM on Tuesday (JR)

The time was announced following the end of Chicago and St. Louis who would have played game seven of their series on Tuesday night.

The time for a potential game seven for the Rangers/Flyers will likely not be announced until the league knows which games will take place on Wednesday.

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3:45PM: From the Rangers:

Alain Vigneault on today?s game??I thought we played a good game. Each game, obviously, plays itself out differently. Today there wasn?t a lot of room in the first period and we took two penalties that we had to kill off. I thought that was real important for us and we got a little bit of momentum off of that, but saying that, because we had to kill those two penalties the flow of our game was a little different. In the second we were able to pick it up and capitalize on a few mistakes.?

?Henrik Lundqvist on killing two penalties in the first period??I felt like the penalty kill was really good today. It just had a tough bounce on their goal, but overall it was a really strong performance and we are going to need it moving forward as well. It?s a big part of winning right now, to get it done on the special teams. I thought we played a really good game, good energy. Looking back at the game in Philly, we did a lot of good things as well. The difference is today we scored a couple goals and that brings a lot of confidence to the group. It?s easy to play patient and not overdo a lot of things.?

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Referee Justin St. Pierre blew the whistle and waved his arms right away as the puck was pushed into the net. St. Pierre was positioned in a place where his line of vision to the puck was blocked by Mason's pad.

St. Pierre's explanation was that the whistle blew before the puck went in, so no goal.

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Larry Brooks writes that no Ranger has stepped up his game to the point of being a difference maker and that has to change with today's game five against the Flyers. (NY Post)

Brooks says that today's game is one where the Rangers need to establish their superiority over the Flyers and puts the burden on Henrik Lundqvist, Rick Nash, Marty St. Louis, Brad Richards and the line of Derick Brassard, Mats Zuccarello and Benoit Pouliot to be the difference makers.? (NY Post)

Filip Bondy writes that the Rangers have been the better team in the series, are the better team on paper and should act like it by losing the modesty in which they are speaking. He says that the "desperately essential, obnoxious voice in the wilderness," a la Sean Avery or Tie Domi, is missing from this team and has hurt them in the series. (Daily News)

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Following the Rangers loss on Friday, many of the players said that they had to make things harder on Steve Mason by getting more traffic and in front of the net.

Alain Vigneault said yesterday that the focus is getting to the inside, getting traffic and getting pressure on the goalie.

Derick Brassard said, "I think the effort is there but when you have a three-man cycle and the puck goes up to the D and the defense will box you out and it's just a matter of trying to get to the inside or if we are on the rush we need a middle drive to push them back and he is a big goalie, 6-4, so he will see a lot of pucks anyway even if you are in front of the net so it's just getting those rebounds and getting to those areas in game five." (Rangers)

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