Lack of Discipline Leads to Another Ranger Loss

Michael PolakContributor IJanuary 7, 2009

Heading into the third period tied at two, Aaron Voros was sent off for a questionable hooking penalty. Despite the Rangers’ strong penalty kill, they had no chance to even try and stop the Canadiens from scoring. Tomas Plekanec won the face-off back to Andrei Markov who blasted a shot by Lundqvist to take the 3-2 advantage.

A little over a minute after Markov’s goal, Callahan took an inadvertent high-sticking penalty then Scott Gomez went off 35 seconds later for an inexcusable holding the stick call. Montreal’s response? Robert Lang put one past Lundqvist of a rebound at 4:40 into the period to put the Canadiens out in front by two.

After Michal Rozsival scored two minutes later on a beautiful one-timer in front, the Rangers failed to score the equalizer and Lang put it away for good with a beautiful wrister over Lundqvist’s shoulder at 15:29 for a 5-3 lead. He would later get the hat trick, scoring short-handed on a Rangers power play late.

Montreal saw the Rangers’ success on the man-advantage against Pittsburgh Monday night, and stayed out of the penalty box until 14:50 in the third and didn’t give the Rangers a power play until there was under four minutes left.

Lundqvist also followed up his stellar performance on Monday night with one of his worst on Wednesday. Montreal’s first tally came when Lundqvist misplayed the puck behind the net and gave it right to Max Pacioretty who promptly passed to former Ranger Alexei Kovalev in front for the goal.

The second goal came when Lundqvist could not control a long shot from center ice and left a juicy rebound for Guillaume Latendresse who slapped it past the netminder. Lundqvist didn’t have the same focus but his defense didn’t help him late, especially down a man.

The Rangers first two goals game in the first when Chris Drury sent a shot off the skate of Markov and past Jaroslav Halak late in the first. The second tally came via Ryan Callahan off a slap shot after a great pass by Scott Gomez midway through the second. However, it wasn’t enough.

If the Rangers want to get back on the winning track as they embark on a season-long five-game road trip against quality opponents (Sabres, Blackhawks, and Penguins, along with the Senators and Islanders), they’ll need to be much more disciplined, especially late in games.