The first round playoff series between the Rangers and the Devils is now a blank slate.
The 10 goals scored by the Rangers between Games 1 and 2? Does not make sense.
The feel-good momentum that was built from the two-game series? gold.
The Devils saw it when they marched to Madison Square Garden and picked up two wins, including a 3-1 win over the Rangers on Monday night, to reset that series at two games apiece with a return to their home territory in Newark for the fifth game. Thursday.
For 40 minutes, the Blueshirts skated without any rush, no regard for the possibility of losing their grip on the series, and, as a result, produced no goals for the Devils.
It wasn’t until the third period that even a fraction of the Rangers, who had dominated the first two games, appeared. Vincent Troschek held the game on everyone and breathed some life into the park, which had more fun hosting the Knicks last week than the Rangers.
Then, Devils defender Jonas Seigenthaler received a cross from Nico Hischier and volleyed it past Rangers goalkeeper Igor Shesterkin for the go-ahead goal later in the final frame.
The first six Rangers fully loaded by two big acquisitions at the trade deadline left their dynamic play in New Jersey. Since the first two games, Rangers have only scored two goals – one in each contest – from their first two streaks.
From feeling confident in themselves and their game to coach Gerard Gallant making changes to their midfield lineup, Rangers have walked away from what made them so dominant at the start of the series.
The only answer Rangers got for Jack Hughes came from the stands.
Every time Hughes touched the puck, Rangers fans relentlessly booed the Devils’ star center. This has certainly happened a lot since Hughes has owned the puck a lot. It didn’t seem to bother him.
Here’s a player who’s only played 20 career games against the Rangers, including four in the playoffs this year, and he’s already pissed off Madison Square Garden without even blaming him for playing dirty.
His only crime? Take it to the Rangers and lead the Demons chain.
Hughes finished with a goal and five shots on goal in game four, and now has three goals in the series.
The Power Rangers game also remained dormant.
After going 4-for-7 to start the series, he’s now on an 0-for-11 skid dating back to Game Two. Game.
Everything was demons in the opening period.
The Rangers had their worst 20 minutes of the series, resulting in a 1-0 deficit going into the first half.
After Philip Chittell and Capo Kaku nearly took advantage of their two-goal opportunity, Hughes charged to breakaway the other way and buried Hughes less than three minutes into the match.