So much for momentum as the Devils again crap the bed early and in about as much time as they scored three goals last night, gave up three tonight in the second period (within 2:39 to be precise) to break a scoreless tie. Unlike last night there will be no miracle comeback though, not considering this franchise is totally psyched out by the pad wonder known as Henrik Lundqvist. What will be his career GAA against us now after he gets yet another shutout, 1.40? Disgusting. He could lose ten in a row, give up four goals every game and still pitch a shutout against us the next night. It's a wonder we even won two games against this team this year although one of them Lundqvist actually got a shutout in.
Obviously the book is to go glove side on Puffy Pads, everyone including Patrik Elias (who went there for the shootout winner a few weeks back) knows that. But like a pitcher in baseball, you just can't throw the same pitch over and over again without varying it up, or the batter will be able to cheat and lay off it or hit it. So far we must have gone glove-side like ten times and it's barely halfway through the game, including some opportunities where we shot wide glove side instead of going where there was room far side.
Of course our shooters aren't alone in stupidity tonight, our power play is just as clueless as ever. Against a team that gave up 900 power play goals the other night we couldn't even gain the zone. And when we got a miniscule five-on-three for like twenty seconds I said to myself, ****ing Lemaire's going to take a timeout, he can't help it. Sure enough he did, regular as clockwork, and the Devils failed to even get a shot on net despite winning the faceoff thanks to the spectacularly bad keep of the zone by (who else?) Brian Rolston. And that timeout would have proved handy later when the Rangers scored twice in rapid succession. Instead, the Rangers were able to build off that momentum and score a third goal when Chris Drury - who's now listed as a fourth liner?! - beat Martin Brodeur with a weak floater at 9:59 and the crowd loved every second of it.
Stupidity's ran amok tonight, from Andrew Peters risking an instigator by dropping the gloves too soon for his second fight of the first period with Brandon Prust, to Bryce Salvador leaving the front of the net before the Rangers' first goal on the power play where Ryan Callahan and Marian Gaborik worked a nice two-on-one in front of Andy Greene, with Gaborik getting the easiest tap-in goal of his career and finally Mike Mottau's predictable killer turnover before Callahan scored through a screen just 56 seconds after Gaborik's goal.
And not to leave out the refs, who did their best to ruin the game before the Devils managed that all by themselves. They were so bad in the first period they should have been fired on the spot! Not only did they miss a first-minute high stick on Zach Parise which drew blood (yes it was incidental contact but you must have control of your stick) but the two penalties they called on the Devils were among the worst I've ever seen. There was basically no contact on either play and on the second one Michael Roszival either dove or was tripped by the invisible man to draw a call behind him. Not that it was all one-way, as they missed an obvious too many men on the ice by us - even Chico Resch admitted that - but as I said earlier also could have thumbed Peters for an instigator instead of giving him a useless ten-minute misconduct.
Oy...the Olympic break can't come soon enough for this team who while they haven't been as terrible as they've been in a lot of games once again have come out totally flat mentally. And things don't get any easier this week with the Flyers coming up twice, an improving Predators team on Friday at the Rock and finally a trip to our tormentors Carolina on Saturday before finally everyone will break for the Olympics.