Feb. 19, 2013; New York, NY, USA; Montreal Canadiens left wing Brandon Prust (8) and New York Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh (27) battle for the puck during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Debby Wong-USA TODAY Sports

How Much Trouble Are the Rangers In?

Following last night’s 3-0 loss to the Montreal Canadiens, the Rangers have lost four of their last five games and sit in ninth place in the Eastern Conference.

The Rangers have played the last few games without superstar winger Rick Nash, lost Michael Del Zotto for at least one game, and saw injuries to Ryan McDonagh and Dan Girardi. Girardi’s x-ray came back negative, but the extent of his and the other’s injuries are not yet known. However, there is speculation that McDonagh is concussed after getting boarded by Max Pacioretty.

Feb 23, 2013; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; New York Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh (27) is checked into the boards by Montreal Canadiens left wing Max Pacioretty (67) during the second period at the Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports

Without even taking the injuries into consideration, things did not look good for this team. The Rangers are showing a distinct lack of passion, grit, and defense. Everything that made this team a juggernaut last year is non existent. The fact that no one came to McDonagh’s aid after that hit is disgusting. The members of last year’s team would not have stood for that.

If any of these injuries turn out to be for more than a couple of games, the Rangers are in deep you-know-what. The struggling defense could not handle the loss of Del Zotto, who wasn’t even playing well, so McDonagh’s injury has me legitimately worried. We have seen Marc Staaland Michael Sauer miss serious time with concussions and this time there is no Ryan McDonagh in the wings to fill their shoes.

I didn’t even mention the injuries of Arron Asham and Darroll Powe, who were really coming on strong before they got hurt.

Every team is to expect injuries, but the Rangers do not have the depth to handle this amount of loss. This type of thing can really demoralize and get a team down. The Rangers were already struggling with a healthy team, and now without some key members they could be in huge trouble.

I have been saying that making the playoffs is all that  matters this year, and if the Rangers get healthy at the right time good things can happen, but I am not holding my breath just yet.

Tags: Dan Girardi Hockey Michael Del Zotto New York Rangers NHL Rick Nash Ryan McDonagh

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