After two road games against the Montreal Canadians in the Eastern Conference Finals, The New York Rangers are headed back to Madison Square Garden with a two game lead. The first home game will be Thursday, May 22, 2014 at 8pm. After two very vital and positive wins, the New York Rangers need to continue to keep their foot on the gas, so to speak, but they also have some things to improve. While I believed last Saturday’s game to be completely dominated by the New York Rangers, who won 7-2, I thought this past Monday’s game was not the same. Despite winning 3-1, there were many turn overs, penalties that should have not been taken, and a lot of shots that Lundqvist had to block. Yes, I know that is his job as goaltender. However more than 40 shots on goal was more about the defense and turn overs. Not to mention there were obviously shots taken that missed the net and others that were blocked by defensemen. There were numerous chances for the Montreal Canadians and that needs to be kept to a minimum.
Now with all that said, I need to just say how proud I am to be a New York Ranger fan and how proud I am of this team. For me, there’s a sense of pride that comes from being a Ranger fan, I don’t know where it comes from but I absolutely loving saying that I am a Blueshirt fan when asked. This playoff series, like the entire regular season, has been one huge rollercoaster ride after another but I don’t know if I would want it any other way. This team made the game even more exciting for me to watch. The way that they have been meshing together in the last five games is absolutely remarkable. It is such a “feel-good” story the way things have been going, granted Martin St. Louis lost his mother late in the Penguins-Rangers series, and just when everyone thought the New York Rangers should be counted out, after going down three games to one; they rallied around a player struggling with a personal loss and came back to prove they are here, and they are ready to fight for the Stanley Cup. All four lines have been contributing to the team. I don’t know if I could pick out one specific star in the last five games. Henrik Lundqvist has been at the top of his game since the beginning. Chris Kreider has been playing smart and fast; his presence was obviously missed when he was out due to left hand surgery. Derick Brassard has been an amazing center and his line mates, Mats Zuccarello and Benoit Pouliot have been just as productive with goals and setting up plays.
I am hoping, just like every year, that this is THE year. For me, this year seems to have something incredible going on within the team. Let’s hope that in coming home, the New York Rangers can get out there with the same momentum and domination. The fans in attendance at Madison Square Garden for this Thursday and Sunday’s games need to be loud and motivating. You always here the players saying that it makes a difference to play in front of a loud and involved crowd and that’s what needs to happen. So if you’re lucky enough to be going to either of these games, I urge you to be LOUD. Show the New York Rangers that we, the fans, want this just as badly as they do. And as always, Lets Go Rangers!