May 2, 2012, 11:41 AM EDT
After driving the Ottawa Senators nuts in the opening round, Brian Boyle‘s found someone else to irritate in Round 2.
New York’s hulking center returned to the lineup on Monday against the Capitals after missing the last three games with a concussion. He played 15:20, was on the ice for Washington’s game-winning goal and tagged with a holding the stick penalty in the third period.
On Tuesday, he expressed frustration with his play.
“I stunk,” Boyle told Newsday. “”I didn’t really do anything and then I was a pretty big reason they scored their third goal.
“I’m not going to accept it. I know the coaches won’t, either. I have to do better. I know I can and that was not the way I wanted to play. I’m determined to do more. I’m going to try to do more. I’m not going to make excuses.”
Pretty harsh self-analysis from a guy that hadn’t played in nine days. That said, Boyle seems cognizant of his importance to the Rangers’ success — he’s scored two of New York’s five game-winning goals this postseason and given his size, presents a rather unique matchup problem.
At 6-foot-7, 244-pounds, Boyle is one of the biggest forwards in the league. The Caps can counter with defensemen John Erskine (6-4, 222) or Jeff Schultz (6-6, 232) though it’s the smaller of the two — Erskine — who’s more physical.
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