John Tortorella vs. the New York Rangers’ stars: Can Gaborik, Richards rebound this season? (Puck Daddy)

The New York Rangers enter Monday night’s game against the Carolina Hurricanes in 10th place in the Eastern Conference, looking up at both the New Jersey Devils and New York Islanders in the standings. It’s an underwhelming season based on expectations – the conference finals appearance, the Rick Nash trade, James Dolan materializing in a press conference to talk about the Stanley Cup – but perhaps not within the context of what this team has been under Coach John Tortorella and before him Tom Renney: a bubble team that finished no better than third in its own division once since the lockout, defensively sound but offensively challenged. It’s not exactly a coincidence that the Rangers’ best offensive season – 11th in the NHL in 2011-12 – was also their most successful under Tortorella. But this season, they’re 27th in the League at 2.33 goals per game. That’s Florida Panthers bad. Where did the scoring go? Why isn’t there more of it with Nash on the roster? [Related: Where are the 'real' New York Rangers? ] Look to the stars for the answer. And wonder if John Tortorella’s the one that’s turned them into black holes.

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