The final images of the Rick Rypien tribute video depicted the late, feisty forward waving his arms high in the air, imploring the crowd to get fired up one last time.

They tried, when they weren't giving Roberto Luongo the Bronx cheer treatment. And so did the team. But it was virtually impossible for the game to live up to the emotionally charged tribute that preceded it.

The game, a 4-0 New York Rangers win, felt hollow. Part of it was the Rypien effect, something that starkly put hockey in perspective.