It’s the second round of the playoffs so there won’t be any wholesale changes. The Rangers don’t have to do anything drastic to improve their play in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference semifinals on Sunday afternoon at TD Garden.
If you take away overtime Thursday night, Game 1 was a pretty even affair. But the Bruins looked all-world in the extra session, earning a 3-2 victory, and the Rangers looked flat-footed and slow.
Overtime has not been kind to the Broadway Blueshirts.
The Rangers are 0-3 in OT this postseason, the first two losses in Washington.
“I don’t think it’s playing with their head at all,’’ said Rangers coach John Tortorella, whose team had an optional practice Friday at TD Garden. “It’d be nice to win one. But I don’t think it’s gotten that far. I’m not sure it was a bounce of a puck [Thursday]. We were dominated in overtime.’’
The Rangers were 0 for 3 on the power play in Game 1 and allowed one goal in Boston’s four man-advantage opportunities.
In the playoffs, New York is a paltry 2 for 31 on the man advantage (6.5 percent) and has killed off 16 of 20 penalties (80 percent).
“You don’t have to stick to [what you’ve done on the power play],’’ said Tortorella. “We’re trying to get it to be better. [On the PK], it was up and down as far as Game 1. There were some good things, some really good situations, faceoffs are very important. Again, you’re always trying to get better at all things.’’
Tortorella said the coaching staff doesn’t use video to study five-on-five situations in the regular season but it does in the playoffs.
“We do quite a bit of five-on-five because I think you play a team for two weeks, there are some tendencies with that club,’’ said Tortorella. “Yes, we are showing video of our special teams and we’ll do it right on through the series.’’
Kreider at home
Former Boston College star Chris Kreider logged 11:37 of ice time in Game 1, with 10:52 coming at even strength. The Boxford native has suited up in four playoff games and was a healthy scratch for four first-round games. He said it’s nice to be home.
“Obviously, there’s a little added excitement there,’’ said Kreider. “Just coming home and being able to play in front of some friends and family. I’m more excited to just start the second round. We didn’t get the outcome we wanted through.’’
Kreider said the Bruins present challenges but the Rangers are up for them.
“They’re obviously a very good team, very strong, especially down low,’’ he said. “I think we’ve just got to get back to playing our game and worry more about ourselves than them. I think we’d like to get it in their end a little bit more, especially in that overtime, and just work them down low. They surged and they were able to score. Hopefully it will go our way in Game 2.’’
Save the concerns
Despite how critical Henrik Lundqvist was of himself following Game 1, Tortorella said he has no worries about his starting netminder. “Not a one,’’ said Tortorella. “I don’t have to say a damn thing to Hank. He gets it and understands what needs to be done.’’ . . . Right wing Rick Nash, who played 20:54 in Game 1, has yet to pot a goal this postseason, although he had a good chance in OT Thursday. Nash said there are many ways the Rangers can improve in Game 2. “I think we could’ve had a better forecheck,’’ said Nash. “[Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara] is a tough guy to play against but at the end of the day, we didn’t get the job done. We didn’t get that goal that we needed and they stopped us. We just weren’t good enough to win. There are a few areas where we’ve got to do better.’’ . . . Center Brad Richards (12:57 of ice time in Game 1) has just one goal in eight games. “I need more from a lot of people,’’ said Tortorella, who said he knows he can get more out of Richards. “When you coach a guy for a long time, you go through [thinking he has done the job in the past], but the decisions you’re making are for the hockey team on that given night. Sure, you always have hope that he’s going to be a big [difference] because I’ve seen him make so many big plays. But it all depends on how the other guys are playing and that’s what’s happened here. I think some other guys are playing better. I think it has balanced our lineup. We’ll see how it goes as we keep on going through the series.’’
Nancy Marrapese-Burrell can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.