Reality Check

Monday, October 19, 2009

It was probably something that the Rangers needed: a good thumping by a decent team. The San Jose Sharks came into MSG and started slowly at first, but in the end they gave the New York Rangers more than they could handle. You could almost smell this one coming after a win in Toronto where the Rangers were outshot and did not play all that spectacular.

The Rangers started out this game like most have started out this season. They had a nice early 2 goal lead thanks to goals by Chris Drury and Michael Del Zotto. But it all changed quickly and by the end of the 1st period things were tied up at 2 a piece. The only thing that really bothered me in the 1st period was Heatley’s goal. He had his head down with the puck at his skates and no one pounds him with a hit? You can’t stick check a player of Heatley’s stature and get away with it! Plus, as I said, he was prime for a bone crunching hit and no one took advantage of it! The Sharks proceeded to blow it wide open in the 2nd period with 3 more goals (5 straight counting their first 2). Sloppy play, penalties, and poor goaltending did the Rangers in tonight. The 3rd period was just basically going through the motions for both teams. The game was really over after the 2nd period.

My take on this thumping? It was bound to happen sooner or later. You can’t win them all. However, Torts will have to remind them that they are a team that still needs a lot of work. I’m pretty sure most fans did see this coming at some point and it came at a good time. There is no need to panic. The Rangers are a good hockey team- just not great yet!

The Devils are coming up next for the Blueshirts on Thursday. The Rangers will have to come out with a better effort against a hated divisional rival if they hope to get back on track. Over and out!


snowcloud said...

I feel the exact same way, Kotsy! I saw this coming a mile away but was hopeful they would hit 8 straight. This is a good wakeup call that they have to get their you-know-what back together and play better hockey than they have been. The last 3 or so wins they have been lucky. Back to basics and the fierce forechecking game they were doing at the beginning of this streak.

Kotsy's Korner said...

snowcloud, The Rangers needed this more than anything right now. It will certainly get their attention back.

No need panic, I believe they saw this coming right along with the Ranger faithful

Good time to get thumped with the Devils on the horizon.

greg m said...

you know kotsy, with the rangers getting off to such a great start, your right, this was bound to happen sooner later,you can second guess this and point fingers at that....but jeeze its one game.i dont get some of the other social networking writers, and the members going crazy.anyway, in the first period,when we scored so quickly, i almost felt like it was a curse,that that happened,momentum seemed to slow down for the rangers,and an aire of cockeyness fell over a monday night arm chair coach, the only thing i might of done different was keep valiquette in the game.... he was already rocked let him finish it you know.

greg m said...

ps bring on the devils......

Jeff said...

Hi Chris,

I don't understand today all the anger coming from the fans towards the coach and the goalie, they overreact a bit too much in my opinion. Maybe we would have won with Lundqvist in nets, but there's nothing sure, that's easy to say so today. The whole team collapsed after we took the lead, the first goal comes from a bad turnover by Brashear in the neutral zone (he'll commit another later in the game). The second goal as you mention is to put on the defence, Girardi and Staal must not let Heatley coming so close to the nets. Vally didn't play great, but the team didn't help him much neither.

We were supposed to lose at some point, this loss doesn't cost us much expect a big kick somewhere, nothing is guaranteed. Lundqvist is the #1, but the fans should understand we'll go nowhere without a good backup this season. Valiquette is a good backup and he will get some starts here and there, Fans should start to understand that the sooner, we can't put Hank in nets for 82 games.

Del Zotto is the real deal! Another PP goal yesterday for the kid, I love him already. Gilroy is showing more defensive instinct than I would have thought.

Leatherneck said...

Hiya Chris, this game had the startuntil Vali gave up the first goal, by a 4th liner. That was an awful goal and soon after the flood gates opened. This was basically a game that was bound to happen and frankly the sooner the better so as not to get over confident. Lets face it, games against Toronto in Toronto and the kings we were outplayed. When Chris Higgins starts rolling it will just make us that much better, time to say goodbye to Brashear, He is a Ranger yes however its time for him to hang them up. Bad penalties and major contributor to his line being a -3 last night. Man if we could just have had our 4th line of last year back it would have been awesome. Now Good news is we have a great rookie corps that will just get better, we know where we are lacking in both in players and play. Things are far better than I expected from the outset. I love the rookies, Del Zotto is a special one, Gilroy an outstanding one and Anisimov with about 20lbs of weight added will be a monster.

Kotsy's Korner said...

greg m, IT was just a matter of when this would happen. The Rangers had been rolling along pretty good. Winning games ugly lately.

Hockey is a humbling sport. You get all impressed with your self and then you get absolutely hammered back to earth.

This Ranger squad is a good Hockey team. They will learn from this and be better for it down the road.

Bring on the Devils LOL.

Kotsy's Korner said...

Jeff, How are you doing? It's been a long time. I don't understand the uproar myself over one game. There is no need to jump all over the coach or players.

The Rangers needed a good ass kicking and that's what they got! A nice reality check.

They know it now and I'm sure Tort's will remind them of it. The players know how they won games decisively and have to get back to it.

The Rangers will need a good back up and Valiquette is more than capable.

Jeff, If you remember I have liked Del Zotto since last year. He's been super so far. Giroy has played well also. Good to hear from you.

Kotsy's Korner said...

Leatherneck, It didn't take a "Rocket Scientist" to figure this game was coming.

The Rangers need this slapping to remind them that Hockey is a "Team Effort" without that you are nothing.

I am not going to agree with you on Brashear, a rough game for him yes! Getting rid of him absolutely not! He wasn't the only player who had a rough night.

I will agree with you on the rookies. Del Zotto is every thing I thought he'd be, smart, great passer of the puck and great offensive instincts.

Leatherneck, There is nothing better than to be humbled to get you back to where you need to be. The Rangers got it last night. Now they must learn from it and move on.

Jason said...

I am in agreement with many that last night was just waiting to happen. The key issue in my mind is what comes next: another bad loss or a well-earned win. Is this all about the other teams figuring out how to play the Rangers or is it the Rangers not playing all that well? If the other teams have developed a strategy to counter the Rangers' aggressive style, then it is up to Torts and the coaching staff to devise counter measures. If this is an issue of players not competing as hard as they should and not following the game plan, then it is up to the players and the team captain to step up and right the ship. It is still early in the season, and the situation should be addressed while time is on their side. A 3-4 game losing streak, and the team will again teeter on the verge of being out of the playoffs. It is very easy to fall back in the standings, but a lot harder to play catch up.

snowcloud said...

Last night was the equivalent to a toddler getting a good spanking to get him back in line.


Kotsy's Korner said...

Jason, I would tend to think that last night was all about lack of focus and work ethic.

I could be wrong but we will find out soon enough with the Devils on Thursday.

The Rangers needed a rude wake up call. Hard work is what got them most of the wins. Just throwing your sticks on the ice can fluke a few more wins but only for awhile.

Last night they got what they deserved. Time to look forward and get back to the basic's and that starts with hard work.

Kotsy's Korner said...

snowcloud, Like I said no reason for getting all excited and start panicking.

The team just needs to understand who they are and how they won all those early games. It's called hard work and focus.

Jeff said...

I'm doing fine Chris, thanks for asking. Hope that's the same for you guys over there. Still reading your blog, I'll try to stop here more often than recently this season. My blog over here is more or less abandoned, I discovered that being published every two months in the magazine bring me more readers! ha ha ha. Am writing a little something at the moment on Del Zotto and Gilroy for the November issue. The lesser time I spend on the blog, the more I spend watching games around the league. I have a lot to learn. That's a win-win situation for me. Love the game and love that team.



Kotsy's Korner said...

Jeff, Good to hear you doing well with the magazine. Keep the Ranger flag flying over seas Jeff. Stay in touch.

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