The 2013-14 season has been nothing but a roller coaster ride for the New York Rangers and their fans. Through their first 38 games, the team has had missed scoring opportunities and untimely defensive errors in several of their losses. In losing 3-2 to the Washington Capitals on Friday night, the trend continued as the Capitals made the Rangers pay for missed opportunities and untimely errors.
In what has become another regular occurrence so far this season, the Rangers would go down 1-0 early in the first period as Mike Green would give the Capitals the early lead on a power play goal. To the Rangers credit, they would not let the early deficit deflate them, as only the efforts on Philipp Grubauer would keep them from scoring a goal during the first period of play. The Rangers started the second period in the same manner in which they closed the first period and that was attacking the Capitals’ net and were rewarded for their efforts as Benoit Pouliot scored the equalizer on a power play.
While the Rangers did a good job of attacking through the rest of the second period, they were unable to convert their shots into goals scored and as a result, the Capitals were given life and the opportunity to retake the lead at any moment. As the second period was coming to a close, the Capitals made the Rangers pay for wasting their efforts earlier in the period as Nicklas Backstrom put the Capitals ahead 2-1. The goal came about thanks to a turnover by Rangers defender Michael Del Zotto, a player whose inconsistent play has mirrored that of the team so far this season.
Just like the start of the second period, the Rangers began the third period quickly as they equalized 17 seconds into the period thanks to Carl Hagelin. Once again, after the tying goal, the Rangers would waste several early chances to take the lead and put the Capitals into a situation of having to chase the game. Late in the third period, as both teams were playing four on four hockey, Rangers defender Dan Girardi would see his shot hit the post.
As the Rangers retreated back on defense in a nonchalant manner, Eric Fehr would score the go-ahead and game-winner for the Capitals and hand the Rangers a loss in a game which they wasted opportunities and shot themselves in the foot with untimely mistakes. In a season that’s seen several bad losses for the Blueshirts, this was the latest one in what has become a (bad) pattern of winning a couple and then losing a game just as things seem to be going right.
Lucas Carreras is a contributing NHL writer for RantSports.com. Lucas is also a contributing San Francisco 49ers and Soccer writer. You can follow him on Twitter by following him @maldini3fan and you can add him to your network on Google.