Tonight, the Rangers/Capitals series comes to a crossroads as the Blueshirts look to take game five and win the series back at MSG on Sunday. The Rangers have seemingly stolen the momentum from the Caps, but as the old adage goes momentum is only as good as the next day’s starting pitcher. Since there are no pitchers in hockey, who knows what will happen.
What hasn’t happened though, is either team getting any significant scoring from their Rocket Richard Trophy winners.
Alex Ovechkin has 1 goal and 1 assist in his four games. Ovi has thrown 15 shots on net and is a minus 1. Alex the Great’s lone goal came on the power play during Game 1 when Mike Green’s point shot went wide of Hank and kicked off the end boards to a wide-open #8 for the put back. Ovechkin got a secondary apple on Mike Green’s PP game winner in OT of Game 2. The Rangers have held the likely Hart Trophy Winner for the League’s MVP to zero points at even strength during the four games in the series. Ovechkin whiffed on his attempted beheading of Derek Stepan and was given a penalty for taking out his own guy, Martin Erat. Hey when you are slumping, you are slumping right? Ovi also displayed, the laziest, probably worst defensive play ever seen in Stanley Cup Playoff history on Stepan’s Game 4 game winner. Now appearing everywhere in hilarious .gif form.
On the Blueshirt’s side, Rick Nash is goalless with a gorgeous assist on Stepan’s game winner in Game 3. Like Ovi, Nash is minus one with 17 shots on goal. Nasher did come within an inch of winning Game 2 when his sweet rush to the net clanged of the goalpost. The much heralded Nash, brought to New York to get over the offensive hump that the Rangers couldn’t climb last season, has yet to produce offensively in the first games of this round.
So now, it boils down to a mini Rocket Richard Race for the series, with Ovi leading 1-0 after four games. If one of these natural goal scorers gets hot, it could swing the series for his team. And one of them will, it is bound to happen. Rick Nash (310 career goals) and Alex Ovechkin (371 career goals) are too good to be held down for this long. One of them is going to bust out. Let’s hope it’s our guy.
Let’s go Rangers!