New York Rangers Come Out Flat, Fall to Ottawa Senators, 2-1, in Game 1 (Highlights)
Apr 27, 2017; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save on a shot from Ottawa Senators right wing Mark Stone (61) in the second period of game one in the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at the Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Marc DesRosiers-USA TODAY Sports

A much different New York Rangers team decided to show up Thursday evening in Ottawa for Game 1 against the Senators. 

  • New York Rangers (0-1)
  • Ottawa Senators (1-0)
  • Stanley Cup Playoffs Round 2
  • Game One Final box score.
  • Canadian Tire Centre, Ottawa, Ontario

Flashback to pre-playoff Ranger hockey and that’s exactly what we were treated to in Game 1 of the series against Ottawa. The Rangers started extremely flat, allowing 21 shots in the first period. If not for another outstanding yet wasted performance by Henrik Lundqvist, the Rangers could have easily been blown out. Hank was incredible throughout the game, making door stop save after another.

The undeserving Rangers were even treated to a one-goal lead, as captain Ryan McDonagh found the back of the net on a power play goal in the second period.

Where was the edge, the physicality we saw in the Montreal series? Its quite hard to believe that a team that worked so hard to get to where they are currently are decided not to show up.

It’s perplexing as a coach to figure this out. You do all you can to prepare the guys and talk about how effective they were in games they won, but they laid an egg on this one. What might be the most common theme of Henrik’s career reared its ugly head yet again: wasted spectacular performances.

Ottawa got on the board in the second on a power play goal from Ryan DzingelKyle Turris ripped a slapshot off of Lundqvist’s shoulder, the rebound bounced high, Marc Staal decided to fall to his knees instead of finding a body in front of the net, and bang, Dzingel finished it.

Paging Kevin Hayes, Paging Chris Kreider. Paging J.T. Miller.

The three most debated players of the Rangers so far, again forgot they had a playoff game and seemingly disappeared tonight. Kevin Hayes played passive, didn’t move his feet, J.T. Miller looks like he has the weight of the world on his shoulders, and Chris Kreider still has yet to find a way to use his big frame to possess the puck below the goal line.

Kreids, watch Bobby Ryan below the goal line. Great possession skills down there.

A lucky late goal by Erik Karlsson proved to be the game-winner. It was a freak play that had McDonagh spinning and Lundqvist looking through a screen. Kraals’ simply threw it on net and he caught a nice break.

The good thing is the Rangers have something extremely valuable when it comes to postseason hockey, and that’s experience and a great core group. They’ve bounced back before, they can do it again. The Senators were in no way overpowering tonight.

Game 2 will be played on Saturday Apr. 29 at 3 p.m. ET, back at the Canadian Tire Centre.

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