Good afternoon New York Rangers fans! How about last night’s 2-1 victory over the Buffalo Sabres? The game was much closer then fans probably wanted it to be, but when you’re playing a goaltender that’s standing on his head there really isn’t much you can do. However the better news is with the Rangers win last night and the loss by the Philadelphia Flyers to Ryan Callahan and the Tampa Bay Lightning the Rangers have clinched second place in the Metropolitan Division and guaranteed home ice in the first round of the playoffs! We’re not sure yet who they’re going to play in round one but it’s between the Philadelphia Flyers and the Columbus Blue Jackets, both teams have 91 points and have two games left but the Flyers currently have the tie breaking advantage over the Blue Jackets. So, the poll today is simple, would you rather play the Blue Jackets or the Flyers in round one of the playoffs?
The Rangers split the season series with the Flyers 2-2, beating them twice at Madison Square Garden once 4-1 on January 12th, and again 3-1 on March 26th, and losing to them twice at Wells Fargo Center once on October 24th 2-1 and again on March 1st 4-2. The Flyers have lost their last eight games in the big apple which is why home ice advantage in this series is crucial for the Rangers to have. Claude Giroux and the Flyers play a very strong offensive game but Dan Girardi, Henrik Lundqvist and the Rangers just have to do what they know how to do to win a series between these two bitter rivals.
The Rangers also split the series with the Blue Jackets 2-2, beating them twice at Nationwide Arena, once 4-2 on November 7th, and again 3-1 on March 21st, and lost to them twice at the Garden, once 4-2 on December 12th, and again 4-3 in a shootout on January 6th. While their may not be a heated rivalry between these two teams and cities like there is between New York and Philadelphia, a rivalry was definitely born on March 21st when Rick Nash made his return to Columbus. Sergei Bobrovksy, Brandon Dubinsky and the Blue Jackets are excited to participate in the second playoff appearance in Jackets’ franchise history, and that may be the biggest danger the Rangers would face the clear enthusiasm. That being said, the lack of playoff experience overall on the Blue Jackets roster, and the emergence of Martin St. Louis may be the downfall of Columbus in the playoffs.
Anyway, that’s what I have for you today Rangers fans! Let me know what you think, who would you prefer to play in round one of the playoffs!