NEW YORK RANGERS: BLUE SUNDAY
They managed to not freeze under pressure, but the Rangers are still skating perilously on thin ice. Within the span of a few days, the Rangers flip-flopped the seventh playoff spot, dropping to eighth, then back again. They staved off a looming disaster for another day with a convincing win over Ottawa. But the two losses previous to that and to Buffalo in particular, are still setting the conditions the Blueshirts must play in.
Back in seventh place the Rangers lead Carolina by just a point; seventy-two versus seventy-one. Buffalo, who stumbled out of the gate this season have made their poor play in October and November a distant memory and have charged back to gain their seventieth point with a victory over the Philadelphia Flyers Saturday night. With fifteen games left in the Blueshirt season (the least number of games among the contenders), the Sabres arrive just in time to reign chaos all over the Rangers' situation.
The Rangers are 5-10 in their last fifteen games. And they have exactly fifteen games left in their schedule. The numbers don't allow me to paint a prettier picture than this; - Carolina, Buffalo, the Devils, and even a resurgent Toronto all have a game or two more to play than we do. The best I can do to sugar-coat the Rangers' 5-15 slide is to say we are 3-3 in our last six. Did I mention Buffalo beat the Flyers yesterday? ..sigh
Let's set this up. It's Sunday; which means Matinee Kid's Day at Madison Square Garden; which means NBC Network game; which means it must be against the Flyers; who are probably quite angry over losing to Buffalo Saturday. All these ingredients are a recipe for disaster.
Did I mention what happened last time the Rangers and Flyers met at MSG during a Kid's Day Matinee game? We lost 4-2 on Feb. 20th. There; consider yourself updated. So it would seem then, the planets couldn't have aligned more out of kilter for us this afternoon than if a cross-eyed Galileo were looking through a cracked telescope.
We've gotten ourselves into a very tough spot. Today, another fight is needed to stave off a Blue Sunday. So be ready to put up your dukes Boys. The Broad Street Bullies are coming. After last night's loss to Buffalo, Philly Clause is Thuggin' to town. Count on it.
Oh yea......Can we get Sean Avery 18:30 minutes of ice time today please?
Let's Go Rangers!!!