The 4-2 final score flattered the Senators, as the night saw the Rangers steadily build a 4-0 lead over three periods. The Rangers' forecheck and disciplined backchecking appeared to confound the Senators, and the result was the kind of easy Game 1 victory you'd expect from a top seed like the Rangers.
The only mildly scary moment was when the Senators strung together a few threatening shifts when the Rangers lead was still just 1-0. But a John Tortorella timeout seemed to calm things down, and before long the Rangers had expanded the Senators' deficit.
With a coach who makes smart adjustments like Paul MacLean and a squad that beat the Rangers three out of four times in the regular season, the Senators are by no means a conquered team after one loss. But the Rangers' big lead with goals from their top three offensive stars -- Marian Gaborik, Brad Richards and Ryan Callahan -- had to make the Senators feel like they ran into a true top seed.
The Senators are a surprise playoff team who didn't qualify until the final week of the season. Meanwhile, the Rangers led the conference all year and were just points away from a President's Trophy even on the last day of the season.
In Game 1, both teams played to type.