About the time the puck dropped on Game Six of the Rangers-Tampa series that everyone interested and involved had heard the stats: 14-3. The Rangers were 14-3 in their last 17 elimination games. It’s an amazing stat when you think about it, talk a team that’s incredibly tough to close out, this is it.
But these are the Rangers, the team that one game looks like it could steamroll you out of the building and in the next has no idea where the net is. Turnovers have been a killer and the power play can’t score but somehow and someway this team has found a way to keep it going.
When the game started so did the Rangers and after the first period they had control with a 2-1 lead. The funny thing is that I thought that maybe it was going to be one of those low scoring games where the Rangers lean on Henrik and he has to carry them. But in the second period they seemed to be on their back foot letting Tampa come at them. They handled the pressure as best as they could allowing no goals in the second but it was painful to watch. It had that feeling that if Tampa scored one it was just going to break open.
Thankfully they didn’t and what happened in the third was something no one could have predicted, 5 Ranger goals! Brassard ended up with three goals and 2 assists, Nash had a goal and 3 assists, J.T. Miller had a goal and 3 assists. That line had 13 points combined, and it was a huge story of Game Six. They didn’t sit back and let Tampa come at them, they took the game to them.
But Hank also played a role, stopping key shots. He stopped 36 of 39 shots and made them when the team needed them. The Rangers needed a good game out of Lundqvist and they got it. This team doesn’t go anywhere without Lundqvist , he’s won 6 straight Game 7s. But these are just stats and it has to be played on Friday.
So now the 15-3 in the last 18 elimination game Rangers go home to MSG to a Game Seven. They have to take the game to Tampa by hard hits and attacking play. They have to make sure they don’t give Tampa any space and I can bet that Hank will give them solid goaltending. I’m sure Game Seven will be a nail biter but I’m sure the Rangers will be ready. They rolled seven in Game Six to get to Game Seven let’s see how they get to the Finals.