Rangers struggled to overcome the drop in scores after the break

Rangers’ dramatic decline in goalscoring in recent games will be a much more obvious concern if the team fails to win half of their game and comfortably hold third in the Metropolitan Division despite this. there.

But the reality is, the Blueshirts have taken a 3-2-1 lead despite averaging 1.83 goals per game since returning from a two-week break last month. For context, in six head-to-head encounters before the break, Rangers averaged almost four goals per game.

Rediscovering their scoring ability sooner or later will be a must for Rangers, who have about 2¹/₂ weeks to do so before the division games really kick in.

“We have to try to produce more,” Ryan Strome said after Lost 5-2 to Canucks on Sunday. “I think there are some people who might be gripping the stick a little bit right now. We’re still getting into a lot of hockey games and we’re playing hockey well as a team, I think. But obviously to score is what we have to do.”

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Ryan Strome was turned down by Canucks’ Thatcher Demko during Rangers’ 5-2 loss.
Corey Sipkin

Rangers have weathered a number of injuries in the first two months of the season, including lost winger Sammy Blais of the year due to an ACL tear. They survived the eight-game absence of star goalkeeper Igor Shesterkin due to a suspected groin injury in December. Even their COVID-19 outbreak in January failed to slow Rangers down.

Going through this stretch, in which goals are hard to come by, is just the most recent hurdle Rangers must overcome to reach their ultimate goal of reaching the knockout stages.

To be fair, Rangers have had a “salty” part in the last two matches. Shesterkin and Rangers did the same thing with opposing teams lasted all season, so it was only a matter of time until they got their own taste of potion.

In Pittsburgh on Saturday, Penguins goalkeeper Tristan Jarry emptied Rangers with 27 saves make sure his team’s single goal is enough. Canucks scorer Thatcher Demko then went to the Garden the following night and robbed several Rangers, notably winger Chris Kreider, on his doorstep, several times en route to making 31 saves.

“Result wise, it’s clearly not a lot,” said Adam Fox. “We are getting good looks. It seems like one of those games that lasted the last few games. I don’t know how many back doors [Demko] made saves there, especially in the first period. ”

Thatcher Demko made a save against Rangers.
Thatcher Demko made a save against Rangers.
Corey Sipkin

“You don’t want to be dismayed with that, and maybe we had a bit of a drop when we were 2-0 down after a good first half.”

Rangers’ 2.2 goals/60 goals at even strength is the second worst in the Metro, just above the Flyers and behind teams on the outside looking at the knockouts like the Islanders and Devils. In all but one of the past six, Rangers have failed to score more than two goals five out of five.

Sunday’s third period saw Rangers offense return slightly, as Alexis Lafreniere and Strome scored just over four minutes apart to avoid having to finish for a second straight game. Rangers will look to do that on Wednesday against former Blueshirt Pavel Buchnevich and the Blues.

“As you can see, things can change quickly,” says Strome. “Definitely we have to have a better response in that second phase. Obviously, when the pucks don’t come in, it’s a bit frustrating. But I think the response has to be maintained with it, instead of allowing the two the other way around. ”

Rangers signed Wolf Pack captain Jonny Brodzinski to a two-year, two-way extension on Monday. Brodzinski is guaranteed $362,500 for both years with a $750,000 NHL salary in Year 1 and a $15,000 raise in Year 2, according to PuckPedia. Rangers struggled to overcome the drop in scores after the break


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