As you know I wasn’t home to watch the Rangers/Capitals game live, but it was on MSG late last night. Since I made a few predictions on Saturday and I’m an insomniac anyway, I watched the whole game even though I knew what happened. Want to know what I think?
I think that was the worst Game Six performance I’ve ever seen in the playoffs.
Now this wasn’t a snap judgment, either. I actually sat down and tried to remember a time when a team played that poorly with a chance to win a series, let alone a Game Six at all. The only thing I could really come up with was Game Six of the Sabres/Flyers series back in 2006.
Still, that was a completely different series. The Flyers were smoked in that game not from a lack of effort, but an inadequate goaltender and an opposing team that was buzzing all night. The Sabres were just better than Philadelphia in every facet of the game, and things finally broke loose in Game Six. Yesterday was different: sure Washington was playing well, but the Rangers didn’t even bother to try.
The deck was stacked against them with Tortorella out, but that’s no excuse to put up that (lack of) effort. It really does make me wonder what’s going on with that team, and who really is in charge. Right now it looks like letters to the NHL are a bigger priority than winning a hockey game to get to the next round.
One again the question is leadership. Who’s in charge on this team, and where have they been? No one looked willing to step up yesterday, and that includes Chris Drury. It’s such a strange situation; in Buffalo we have no leadership but we know the problem: youth. What’s the problem in New York? Is it that no one wants to listen, or is there something larger going on here?
The oddest thing is that it’s not over. New York needs to win one hockey game and they get to move on, but if you watched yesterday it already looks decided. Washington has yet to play their best hockey in this series, and all they have to do is beat a confused team on home ice to make it to the next round. It’s probably one of the oddest first round series I’ve ever seen, and I have no idea what to make of either team once they make it out of the first round.
Right now I think the only thing anyone knows is who will win tomorrow night.