Rangers Ripped After Defensive Strategy 'Backfired' in Game 1 Loss vs. Hurricanes

Erin WalshMay 19, 2022

RALEIGH, NORTH CAROLINA - MAY 18: Teuvo Teravainen #86 of the Carolina Hurricanes is checked by Alexis Lafreniere #13 of the New York Rangers during the second period in Game One of the Second Round of the 2022 Stanley Cup Playoffs  at PNC Arena on May 18, 2022 in Raleigh, North Carolina. (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Following a slow start in which they failed to challenge New York Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin, the Carolina Hurricanes defeated the Blueshirts 2-1 in overtime in Game 1 of their second-round playoff matchup at PNC Arena on Wednesday to take a 1-0 series lead.

The Rangers led the Hurricanes 1-0 for more than two-and-a-half periods thanks to an early goal from Filip Chytil, but Carolina broke through with around three minutes remaining in the third period to tie the game 1-1 on a goal from Sebastian Aho and send it to overtime.

After Hurricanes defenseman Ian Cole scored the game-winner just three minutes into overtime, the Rangers were ripped for their horrific defensive strategy in the third period as they sat back and allowed Carolina to control much of the action.

Andrew Feldman @AFeldmanESPN

Prevent defense does one thing …


Rangers went into a shell… backfired. We’re headed to OT.

Rob @nymoonburn1

The Rangers lost that game and deserved to for how conservative they got from the 3rd period on. That is not winning hockey. In fact in no sport does it work to play prevent defense. It just prevents you from winning. They deserved that loss.

Ben @BigBen0397

The Rangers defense from the 3rd period and overtime <a href="https://t.co/onOnoGecY4">https://t.co/onOnoGecY4</a>

x - Justin @justinc_99

The Rangers deserved to lose that game, they went from playing excellent defense to garbage defense and it costed them big time. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NYR?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NYR</a>

Hunter @HunterHodies

That’s what the Rangers get for trying to play prevent defense for the entire 3rd period.

Mr. Millien @Millien4life

You simply cannot spend a whole period playing defense. That's a dumb strategy by the Rangers and they paid for it

roo @kangaroopouches

The <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Rangers?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#Rangers</a> defense is atrocious. It I'm Igor, I'm incensed. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NYR?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NYR</a>

Paul Rosenberg @PaulsRandomness

Canes deserved that goal. Rangers with atrocious 3rd period defense

starblazer @01Starblazer

Tough way to lose. Ranger defense got caught with under 3 minutes left and Aho had two shots to put it in. <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NYR?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NYR</a> need to regroup and win Game 2. They have no choice.<a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/NoQuitInNY?src=hash&amp;ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#NoQuitInNY</a>

It's not hard to see why the Rangers' defensive strategy in the third period didn't work out. The Hurricanes entered averaging 3.43 goals per game in the playoffs and were bound to eventually find the back of the net.

That said, the Rangers will need to regroup for Game 2 on Friday and find a way to score more than once on Canes backup goaltender Antti Raanta. That could be difficult, though, as the veteran also stymied the Boston Bruins in their first-round series.