It is just getting to be ridiculous with the New York Rangers. With any normal team when an opposing squad plays their backup goalie, the fanbase gets giddy. Not with the Rangers’ fanbase. It has been ongoing for years that the Rangers just can’t seem to solve backup goalies.
The Ottawa Senators (a team that is not going to the playoffs) started their backup goalie, Robin Lehner. Lehner stood on his head as the Senators beat the Rangers 3-2. Mats Zuccarello had both goal for the Rangers.
It has happened so much over the last couple of years. Maybe it isn’t the backup goalie but the fact that the Rangers shooting percentage is low. But nights like tonight make it really hard to dispute the fact that the Rangers can’t beat backup goalies. Good thing for the Rangers that they won’t be playing many backup goalies in the playoffs. They failed to clinch tonight but are well on their way to clinching a spot in the postseason. It would take a collapse of epic proportions for the Rangers not to make the tournament.
The Rangers have three games remaining and need to fine-tune some things before the playoffs. They did a good job of getting bodies in front of Lehner but they seem to struggle when the puck is in the dirty area in front of the net. Those are goals that separate great from good teams.
If the Rangers were playing against backup goalies in the playoffs they would probably make them look like a combination of Martin Brodeur, Patrick Roy, and Jim Craig.