Tanner Glass has injected the New York Rangers fan base with some much needed optimism, but is the glass half full mentality warranted?
The New York Rangers have posted two wins on the road in back-to-back games, the first of which was an overtime victory.
Antti Raanta and Henrik Lundqvist have looked spectacular while the player who everyone loves to hate has made a triumphant return.
Your boy Tanner Glass is not only back, but he’s producing on the score sheet.
Let’s break out the bubbly and raise some banners.
Following these two wins, there couldn’t possibly be a negative angle, right? The team has looked motivated and energized the past two nights, so there couldn’t possibly be anything to complain about.
If you’re complaining when the Rangers win, you’re basically just being a crab, right?
Not so fast.
I’ll agree that the Rangers played well against the Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers, but that just may be the problem.
It’s the Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers.
Both of these teams are fighting for their playoff lives and will most likely be a one and done team if they do happen to make the post season. It’s important to make this distinction.
If we rewind to this past Saturday night, the Rangers had lost three out of their last four games. If Henrik Lundqvist had not played stellar against the Boston Bruins, the Rangers would have most likely dropped four games in a row.
What we are starting to witness is a New York Rangers’ team that will win “games they are supposed to win” while losing in brutal fashion to the teams who I believe are the true Stanley Cup contenders.
The Washington Capitals, Columbus Blue Jackets, and Montreal Canadiens have looked like teams that are simply a level above the Rangers.
Now am I saying this trend will continue into April? Not necessary. We do, however, need to face the fact that this Rangers team is most likely not going to make it past the second round of the playoffs.
For the record, Tanner Glass is not the missing piece to the Rangers’ lineup, this is promise you.
Some of my colleagues disagree with me on this point, but here is a simple question which can end the debate once and for all.
There are seven minutes left in Game 7 of a playoff series. Would you be willing to put a fourth line with Tanner Glass on the ice?
The Rangers have been successful when they can roll four lines which is something they couldn’t do last year, by the way.
Think back to the 2014 playoffs. The Rangers not only a fourth line that was not only serviceable, but could score a clutch goal when needed. Tanner Glass will not be able to be that guy against strong playoff teams.
While we’re on the Tanner Glass subject, check out this amazing video of Glass scoring to the the famous Titanic song, “My Heart Will Go On”.
— Wob™ (@Zherdev_) March 8, 2017
Glass is simply experiencing a phenomenon numerous call-ups and rookies have experienced for years.
I know he’s not a true “beginner”, but it is his first time playing with the Rangers in quite a while. When the adrenaline dies down and a few games have past, you will see the same old Tanner Glass who everyone loves to dump on, mark my words.
It’s time to face reality folks.
When this team is healthy, and I mean truly healthy, they are a fast and lethal offensive juggernaut that can skate with the best of the NHL. Sadly, this current Rangers’ roster is far from healthy.
Michael Grabner’s hip injury is something which will affect his skating when he does return, Pavel Buchnevich and Chris Kreider are playing banged up, Jesper Fast’s board presence is missed, and Mika Zibanejad is only now starting to look like his former self.
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Depth is a serious issue this hockey club.
In years past, the Rangers could absorb an injury or two. Think back to 2015 when Mats Zuccarello suffered a brutal head injury. The Rangers were able to forge on ahead without one of their better players, although I still believe they would have had a much more consistent Conference Final with Zucc in the lineup.
Until the Rangers become healthy, they will not be competitive in the playoffs.
Not even the Tanner Glass effect can save this team.