May 22, 2012, 3:43 PM EDT
For a number of Rangers forwards, this postseason has been a struggle.
– Carl Hagelin‘s last goal came on Mar. 15.
– Ruslan Fedotenko has 1G in 18 playoff games. And that 1G came in the 18th game.
– Derek Stepan is scoreless in 12.
– Brian Boyle hasn’t scored since Game 3 of the first round.
– Ryan Callahan‘s suffered goalless streaks of five and six games.
– Marian Gaborik‘s goals-per-game rate has fallen from .50 (regular season) to .22 (playoffs).
Head coach John Tortorella has tried everything to get his group going offensively. He’s benched players, switched up lines, used positive reinforcement, used negative reinforcement…but nothing’s really worked.
Now, he’s turning to divine intervention.
Q. In this series you got three goals from Kreider, an empty-netter from Callahan. The rest of your top six hasn’t been able to get a goal. What can you do to get those guys going?
COACH TORTORELLA: Pray. I don’t know what else to tell you. We’re going to keep on trying to play, pray, and hopefully something good happens to them.
That New York’s made it this far with so little from its offensive stars is amazing, though we are seeing a similar situation unfold in Phoenix.
Ray Whitney led the Coyotes in regular season scoring with 77 points, but through 15 games sits a distant fifth (with seven points). Radim Vrbata led the ‘Yotes in goalscoring with 35 — 11th-most in the NHL — but has fallen almost completely silent in the playoffs with just two markers thus far.
Of course, the “Phoenix model” isn’t one to emulate…especially with the way the Western Conference final has unfolded.
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