Rangers' power play fails to live up to the name 8-for-58 rates below expectations

October 31, 1995|By NEW YORK TIMES NEW SERVICE

NEW YORK -- Just shoot, baby.

That's what New York Rangers coach Colin Campbell keeps urging his power-play unit to do. Until, it sometimes seems, he is blue in the face.

The Rangers went 1-for-9 with the man advantage Sunday night. They are 2-for-22 over their past three games. For the season, they are 8-for-58 (13.8 percent). And this with such players as Mark Messier, Brian Leetch, Adam Graves, Luc Robitaille, Pat Verbeek, Ray Ferraro and Aleksei Kovalev to choose from.

Campbell said the solution was simple.

"I'd like to say that there are other things going on, and that there's a deep secret," the coach said. "But any time you run into that problem, with the power play not operating, you just tell them to get it back and go on the theory that you have five, they have four and get at the net. With Verbeek and Graves, Ferraro and Robitaille around the net, you would expect to get those rebounds and slip them in. But if there's no shot. . . ."

It's not as if this is a new phenomenon for the Rangers.

"We've had problems in the past," the second-year coach said. "We struggled early last year, and then came on. So, it's not a concern. But it is an area that we have to work on."

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