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Rangers Collapse as Offense Struggles Again

12/4/09

Once again the Rangers offense struggled to do much of anything, scoring only one goal for the second straight game in losing to the Canucks 4-1 on Tuesday night. Vancouver came out and outskated, outdisciplined, and outworked the Rangers throughout all three periods, including the first in which they outshot the Blueshirts 10-4.

Congrats to Chris Higgins for finally putting one in the net, a power play goal that tied the game at one, but the offense again was disappointing as nobody stepped up as the Canucks keyed on Gaborik. Kotalik and Callahan both had some chances, but they were few and far between and the offense as a whole rarely sustained any pressure.

What was most disappointing last night was that the Rangers seemed to play the whole game on their heels. They were tentative in all three areas of the ice, and consistently lost battles for the loose puck. I wasn’t there after the game, but
I’m sure Tortorella got into them for that.

Is there a bigger waste of cap space than Michael Roszival? I consider him responsible for the first two Vancouver goals. He let former Ranger Mikael Samuelsson get free for a rebound on the first, and then put forth a shotty effort trying to get to a puck behind the net on Rypien’s goal. He was awful last night, and Torts certainly recognized it as Roszival had the least amount of ice time for Rangers defense. Dan Girardi had more even with a ten-minute misconduct penalty.

I wouldn’t want to try to make a run at the cup with three rookie defensemen, but one of the kids in Hartford has to be ready to step up because Roszival is costing this team games. We can live with mistakes from kids like Del Zotto because he gives us so much on offense, but not someone Roszival.

-Mike Valvano

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