May 5, 2014, 10:54 PM EDT
After a rough stretch in which his team played two back-to-backs and one Game 7, Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault finally let his frustrations loose.
“We were forced to play a stupid schedule, 5 games in 7 nights, & I’m real proud of how our guys handled it”-Alain Vigneault #NYRPlayoffs
— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) May 6, 2014
This message was in stark contrast to Vigneault’s message prior to Game 3. He insisted his team wasn’t tired and that the schedule wasn’t wearing his side down — even though, on Monday night, the Rangers became the first team in 25 years to play five playoff games in a seven-day span.
“Did my goaltender look tired?” Vigneault asked following Sunday’s 3-0 loss in Game 2. “He’s played every minute in the playoffs. If he isn’t, no one should be.”
Tonight’s loss to Pittsburgh was hardly the byproduct of fatigue (or so it seemed.) The Rangers had enough jump and legs to out-shoot the Penguins 35-15 and played very well in stretches, but the fact still remains — the Rangers haven’t scored on Marc-Andre Fleury in 120 minutes of action and the club clearly lacks the finish and focus needed to put pucks in the back of the net.
Is that a fatigue issue? The Rangers won’t say so publicly, but it’s telling how they’re now acknowledging the schedule has been a factor.
- Oilers sign McDavid to entry-level contract 4
- ‘Hawks would like to re-sign Oduya, but still working through ‘financial hurdles’ 5
- Trade: Caps acquire Oshie from Blues for Brouwer, Copley and draft pick 73
- Voynov takes plea, gets 90 days in jail plus probation 59
- Curtains on Broadway: Martin St. Louis calls it a career 36
- Discuss: Where’s the best fit for Alex Semin? 23
- Caps landing ‘affordable’ Williams a sign of the new free agency 4
- Shots fired! ‘Canes owner Karmanos rips into Jim Rutherford (Updated) 58
- Here’s who’s left after Day 1 of free agency 30
- PHT’s 2015 free agent frenzy tracker 38
- Blockbuster: Kessel traded to the Penguins (131)
- Trade: Flyers send Rinaldo to Bruins for 2017 third-rounder (105)
- Trade: Jackets land Saad; Anisimov and Dano headed to Chicago (93)
- Bypassing a buyout? Kings terminate Richards’ contract for ‘material breach’ (90)
- Trade: Flames land Dougie Hamilton for package of picks (75)