New York Rangers Need Killer Instinct In Game 5


After taking Game 4 in OT, 2-1, and a 3-1 series lead over the Pittsburgh Penguins, the New York Rangers need to show a killer instinct in Game 5 at MSG.

New York Rangers
New York Rangers /

New York Rangers

Game 4 started out as bad as could be for the New York Rangers in Pittsburgh.  In the 1st period, the Pittsburgh Penguins came out flying, beat the Rangers to every lose puck, and their forecheck pressure forced the Rangers into a considerable amount of turnovers.  The period ended with the Rangers only recording 2 measly shots on goal, however, a huge win for the Rangers in that period was that the Penguins were only leading on the scoreboard 1-0 after the 1st.

About halfway through the 2nd period, the Rangers started taking over the game and were able to tie the game at 1, on a goal by Rangers’ center, Derick Brassard, before the end of the 2nd.  With no one scoring in the 3rd period, the game would go to overtime where Rangers’ rookie forward, Kevin Hayes, scored his first ever postseason goal, winning the game for the Rangers in overtime by a 2-1 final score, giving the Blueshirts a 3-1 series lead over the Penguins.

Now if you recall last postseason, when the Rangers played the Penguins in the 2nd round, it was the Penguins who had a 3-1 series lead and the Rangers proceeded to win 3 straight and take the series in 7.  The Penguins lacked the killer instinct last postseason to shut the door on the Rangers, and as a result they kept the Rangers hanging around and it came back to bite them in the behind.  The Rangers must learn from the Penguins mistakes last postseason and show a killer instinct in Game 5 on Friday, back home at Madison Square Garden.

With most of the players from last season’s Rangers still on the roster, plus having the same exact coaching staff, everyone should be well aware what can happen if you leave a team hanging around.  And since blowing a 3-1 series lead happened last season to the Penguins, against the Rangers, the Penguins may be even extra motivated to come back and win this series, not only to advance in the playoffs but also for revenge.

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Unfortunately, the Rangers have shown in the past that they do not have that killer instinct required to close out a series.  Even in 1994, the year the Rangers last won the Stanley Cup, they should have closed out the Stanley Cup Final in 5 games, after taking a 3-1 series lead, but they kept the
Vancouver Canucks hanging around and the series stretched to 7 games.  Luckily for the Rangers, however, they were able to avoid the collapse and won the Stanley Cup on home ice in Game 7.

The Rangers always seem to make things unnecessarily painful, but given what just happened last season when the Penguins had a 3-1 series lead over the Rangers, it would be very smart for the Rangers to show that killer instinct in Game 5, that the Penguins lacked last season, and close out this series on Friday night.

But with that being said, I will not be holding my breath.

Next: New York Rangers' Kevin Hayes Scores OT Winner Against Penguins (Video)

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