2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs: Will Ottawa continue their sluggish offense and allow the Rangers to control game five, heading back to the Garden. Here’s a look at the New York Rangers keys to a game five victory.
Last time these two meet for a Saturday matinee, Ottawa came back from a three-goal deficit to force overtime. After both teams could not manage to score in the first overtime, a second overtime was to be played. Ottawa went on to win 6-5, from Jean-Gabriel Pageau‘s fourth goal of the game giving Ottawa a 2-0 series lead in the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs. Since then Ottawa has traveled to New York for two games, which the Rangers ended up taking both games 4-1. With the series tied 2-2, Ottawa heads back home to the Canadian Tire Centre for game five.
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May 4, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers left wing Chris Kreider (20) celebrates after scoring a goal against Ottawa Senators goalie Mike Condon (1) with teammates during the third period of game four of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports
The New York Rangers have outscored Ottawa 8-2 in the last 120 minutes, both games New York held complete control of the game. Dominating in all facets of the game, Ottawa has looked slow and frustrated with minimal offensive production. As the Rangers look to take their third straight win to take a 3-2 edge in the series. When teams have been tied 2-2 in the Playoffs the winner of game 5 has won the series 78.7 percent of the time. As if game five was not big enough, it just got even more important, expect to see a game 7 atmosphere in Ottawa tonight.
Ottawa’s number one defenseman has been playing all playoffs with a lingering heal ligament issue, while he was able to walk away scratch free in Boston. New York has got to the star defenseman. Karlsson was found falling awkwardly numerous times in game four as the Rangers continued to pressure and beat him in the corners and open ice. Karlsson exited game four at the end of the second and did not return for the third period. He was questionable all week until Ottawa just released his status. If the Rangers can continue to pressure Karlsson, they’ll walk away with a game five victory.
Craig Anderson has let up 12 goals on 98 shots over the last three games he has played. Anderson was pulled at the start of the third, allowing backup goaltender Mike Condon to come in for relief. Anderson has been sluggish to play the puck this series. Along with a few questionable goals in games three and four, the veteran goaltender looks shaky and the Rangers need to bounce on that immediately from the start of the game.
The Rangers have outshot, out-chanced and outworked the Senators in the past two games. The frustration is boiling on the Senators bench and they’ve had no real answer for the Rangers explosive offense. The Blueshirts realize they’re in Ottawa’s head, from the drop of the puck the Rangers need to continue to pressure the puck, score quick goals and never let off the pedal.