A chance to officially knock the Devils out of the playoffs, failed. A chance to get some revenge on the Rangers, failed. Not to mention the fact that we’re in first place by a thread, thanks to some tiebreakers. This dream season is completely unraveling before our eyes.The Devils game was a hard gut punch. The Flyers know exactly what it takes to beat them, and they only played the right way half the time. Jersey lives on turnovers in the neutral zone, and when you start your breakout with a long pass from your own end towards the red line, they eat that up. It seemed like half the time that was our strategy, and every time we did that, they took the puck away. It was pretty damn pathetic to watch. Then we let old-head Patrik Elias skate freely through our zone all game long. The guy isn’t nearly as good as he once was, and he gets a hattie? Come on!
The worst part is that we fell apart in the third period. We’re tied, we’re supposedly better, and we end up losing the game. We fired 36 shots, and came away with 2 goals. The night before, we had nothing in 43 attempts. Either we’re having some horrible luck, or we’re just not making it too hard on the goalies. Whatever it is, it’s a problem we need to fix asap.
Then the Rangers come in, and we fire a bunch more shots on Lundqvist, and only get a pair by him. The last thing I wanted was a shootout, which of course is exactly what we got. And was there any doubt we’d lose that? Bob completely whiffed a poke-check, and then got beat pretty cleanly on a backhand-forehand deke. I’m just happy that there are no shootouts in the playoffs.
Leino got benched for most of the third period, as if that’s actually going to do anything. No, he hasn’t exactly done anything special lately. But he’s not the only one. The entire offense just isn’t clicking the way they were. I’m tired of figuring out what’s wrong, and if/when they’ll wake up. I just want the regular season to finally end, so these guys can prove whether or not they can just turn it on and get into playoff mode. We never saw it coming last year, yet somehow they put together a great run. Can they really do it again at will? I hope so.
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