Evgeni Malkin was unsuccessful in helping his team, the Pittsburgh Penguins, during their playoff loss to the New York Rangers. His statistics show he took 11 shots on goal but was unable to score. He wasn't on the ice when the Penguins scored their one goal, but he was on the ice when Rangers scored one of their two goals. It was an all together lackluster performance.
Evgeni Malkin may not have had an astounding performance on paper, but in the world of professional hockey numbers are often not the best way for a player to make a difference. Malkin forces other teams to worry about him and occupies the other teams best players. This is vital in a game where goals are so hard fought. His play allows other players to make big contributions.
Evgeni Malkin was not irrelevant for his team during the NHL Playoffs. The Penguins did not play good enough hockey to further themselves in the playoffs. Malkin may not have played up to his true ability but he was anything but irrelevant. If he skated on the ice and handled the puck then he played a role.
Evgeni Malkin was a critical player for the Pittsburgh Penguins during the NHL playoffs. The center player for the offense portion of the team has led the Pittsburgh Penguins to victory, and without his help it is more than likely that they would not have made it as far as they have.