The rangers hand over control of the Conference Finals to Lightning

The rangers hand over control of the Conference Finals to Lightning

Despite facing two-time defending champions Tampa Bay Lightning and needing seven games to advance from each of the first two rounds of the playoffs, the Rangers always had a trump card in their pockets: Fortress Madison Square Garden.

Although he allowed Lightning to close the series after losing two games in Tampa, Rangerland, who came out in Game 5, had an unshakable sense of confidence. After all, the team was 8-1 at home in the playoffs, the only defeat came. Triple extra time in the first game against the Pittsburgh Penguins.

So it was a hammer blow when Thursday night’s Lightning spell in the Garden ended in a 3-1 victory. And even more frustrating, because Tampa’s main goals came entirely not from Steven Stamkos, Nikita Kucherov and Ondrej Chamber’s power trio, but from a defender who received a few low-percentage shots.

Rangers started the night promising. They seemed to be adorned with the energy of their magnificent arenas, playing from the opening encounter with a power and sharpness lacking in Tampa. The speed was fast and the first half was free and without penalties.

It was a concern for the Rangers, who had a clear advantage, and he was goalless. New York scored eight shots and Yildirim goalkeeper Andrei Vasilevsky saved them all. His colleague Igor Shesterkin was called to rescue only three people. And that came from the Rangers, who won the first four games 153-127.

Yildirim sometimes looked less like two defending champions in the first leg and more like a team that admired the event. Every time (and there were many) when they came face to face at the end of Lightning, there was a feeling that the Rangers would finally pass.

But it is not an advantage unless you score a goal. The Rangers finally got their share of the second half, not by a 10:29 advantage, but almost by accident. Defender Ryan Lindgren scored the first point of the series and the second goal of the playoffs with a speculative shot from close proximity to the boards, which was probably intended to bend. Instead, he went inside.

But if New York waited for the first blood transfusion to open the game, it was wrong. The advantage of one arm is a delicate cane, even in the garden. Tampa Bay’s response came at 17:34, and it was kind of even harder.

Defender Mikhail Sergachev scored his first goal in the playoffs. It was also helpless: at least three Rangers, as well as Lightning’s Corey Perry, and then an almost high shot from the blue line through the camp at Shesterkin’s camp, which could do nothing.

The visitors not only equalized the score, but also shattered the advantage of the Rangers. After the second half, the difference in shots disappeared and both goalkeepers made 15 saves in 16 shots.

In the frantic third half, both sides were unable to take advantage of the opponent’s mistakes and the opponent’s mistakes by a small margin, and the tension caused several push-ups and push-ups.

1:50 before the end, Tampa staged a coup, most likely Sergachev crossed the puck through the blue line and the Chamber turned it into a home. It took the life of Thunder Garden, who was already preparing for one or more extra time, and although Tampa added a goal to the empty net by Brandon Hagel, the game was essentially over.

It can be claimed that this series went to Yildirim in every game. Rangers have scored just two goals in hockey in the last eight rounds.

Game 1 was effectively deceptive, with the Rangers winning 6-2 and Yildirim looking rusty after a week-long break after sweeping the Florida Panthers in the previous round.

The Rangers won 3-2 at home in Game 2 and took a 2-0 lead in Game 3 in Tampa. But it was a high water mark. Thirty seconds later, Yildirim scored and won 3-2. In the 4th match, Yildirim won 4-1. Suddenly the series closed.

The Rangers relied on the home building and the crowd to counter the trend on Thursday, apparently relying on players like Chris Kreider and Artemi Panarin, who scored 52 goals, often the best players on the ice.

Kreider’s power-play prowess – he led the league in men’s dominance goals – was limited to a game with almost no whistling. Rangers were called up for only two in-game penalties and Lightning. (The post-match play, starring Steven Stamkos and Alexis Lafrenière, resulted in six more games that were too late to affect the final score.)

“It was one of those games; It was a defensive battle, “said Rangers head coach Gerard Gallant, who said Shesterkin had been checked and had not seen either the first or the second goal.” We played a game of loud hockey. it could have gone two ways. ”

The year has been a success for the Rangers, who have been dismantling and rebuilding the previous four seasons that missed the playoffs, and the conference finale is a resounding success. And despite the declining loss, Rangers are not technically dead yet.

The Rangers came back from one of three games against the Penguins and finally won Game 7 in overtime. They returned twice against Hurricanes in the next round and won Game 7 again.

Now they have two or three games left, they need two straight victories. Worried, the first of those on Saturday must arrive in Tampa.

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