The Rangers are on a 4-game win streak but their major problems are still showing

Chicago Blackhawks left wing Nick Foligno (17) scores past New York Rangers goaltender Igor Shesterkin (31) during the third period at the United Center
Daniel Bartel-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers appear to have turned things around on paper, as the Blueshirts are on a four-game win streak, and have gone 3-0-0 since the All-Star break came to a close. Their most recent victory came Friday night against the Chicago Blackhawks, but that win was the sloppiest of this stretch, with many problems being exploited by what is practically an AHL team.

The Rangers have won four straight, three since the ASG

This win streak began back on January 27th, when the Blueshirts scored seven goals against Ottawa to earn their first victory after back-to-back losses. It was an overall dominant performance, but it didn’t prove much with the Senators being one of the worst teams in the NHL.

The Rangers then went into their bye week. Following the break, they earned two of their most impressive wins this season. Jonathan Quick was given two straight starts against the Colorado Avalanche and Tampa Bay Lightning, as he appeared to re-enter his prime and steal the show for the Blueshirts. He allowed just one goal in each contest, against two of the better teams in the league.

The Rangers’ win streak recap comes to a close against Chicago, where Igor Shesterkin was given the start. The Blueshirts managed to earn the victory, but it was a rough ride after the first period.

Problems continued to be exploited against Chicago

With the Rangers being one of the better teams in the NHL, and the Blackhawks being the statistical worst, there is no reason why Friday night’s matchup should have gone to overtime. The Rangers were the heavy favorites right off the bat, and they had a two-goal lead entering the third period.

Not every goal against can be blamed on Shesterkin, but it’s clear that he still needs to put in some more work in order to return to his usual self. The same small group of forwards produced most of the points on offense, and the power play continued to struggle as well.

At the end of the day, a win is a win. Two points are exactly what the Rangers needed, and it’s what they got. But it was quite visible during the celebration of Mika Zibanejad’s overtime goal that the players knew they did not truly deserve that victory.

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