Rangers Comeback Falls Short

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Hey everyone, it’s Kotsy here back from the Christmas break. I hope you all had a good holiday and enjoyed our special guest blogger.

Well, so much for that Rangers winning streak! The New York Islanders put an end to that with a 3-2, OT win over the Boys in Blue on Saturday night. Where do I start with this one? A nice, furious comeback by the Rangers, which was led by Brandon Dubinsky and his 2 goals in the 3rd period, allowed the game to even get to the OT period. His second goal was scored while Lundqvist was pulled from his net for a 6th attacker. Considering the Rangers were down 2-0 heading into the 3rd period, it was nice to see the Rangers show some fight and dominate the Islanders for most of the 3rd period. I was thinking, “Where was this effort in the first 2 periods?”. This lack of effort was what put the Rangers in the precarious comeback scenario to begin with! Sorry, you have to be more intense and involved early on.

Anyways, with the momentum on the Rangers side heading into the OT- I’m sure the whole building thought the Rangers would prevail. Whoops! It didn’t happen. Kyle Okposo challenged the Rangers by going on what started as a 1 on 3 and ended up being a game winning deflected shot from 45 feet out. Yes, it hit Marc Staal’s skate and changed direction and clanged off of the post and in. A bit of a fluky goal? Call it what you want, but the Rangers have got to find the right formula for winning at home. This simply cannot continue if the Rangers wish to be successful. Losing precious points hurts. But to be positive, they found a way to get a point when it looked like they wouldn’t get one at all.

Wednesday the Flyers come into town. Let’s hope the Rangers can straighten out this dismal home record and start winning at MSG. It’s your house, protect it! Over and out!


Spreading the Christmas Cheer!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Hey there, guest blogger here filling in for Kotsy as he enjoys the Holidays...

Another nice win for the Rangers tonight! 4 in a row? Wow, unbelievable! It's nice to see a streak finally put together by the Blueshirts. Let's all hope that they can keep this going after the short Christmas break. And boy, oh boy- isn't it great that we won tonight? I, for one, will be resting much easier knowing that Chris Drury's Christmas will most definitely not be ruined this year (To be fair, he's playing great since Torts called the veterans out).

I would just like to talk briefly about the holidays. A nice time of the year which consists of spending time with the family, giving, receiving, and just having an all-around good time. Santa Claus is getting ready for his trip around the world to deliver amazing gifts to those who have been nice and coal to those who have been naughty. And, oh boy... are there those on the Rangers who have been naughty...

I hate to continue to beat up on this "dead horse" that Kotsy has mentioned in previous posts, but I would hope that Santa has some nice lumps of coal ready for certain individuals on the Rangers blueline. Michal Roszival and Wade Redden (check out the rare picture of Redden and his twin brother to the right) have certainly been naughty since they received their contracts from the Slats Claus two off-seasons ago. I mean, really, how can anyone defend these guys? They don't provide any offense, they don't hit, they are slow, and have no confidence. Other than that, I guess they are doing a great job! I'm working on compiling a soundtrack (available this upcoming off-season) of the various sounds they make while getting destroyed by their opponents. Beautiful sounds, I tell ya. It sounds almost as good as the backboard sounds from the numerous wide slapshots by Alice Kotareek.

But, to be fair, Slats has given us Rangers fans quite a nice gift this past off-season: Marian Gaborik. What is there to really say? This guy just gets the job done. He's just a pure scorer, sniper, or whatever you wish to call him. For once, a lucrative contract handed out to a FA seems to have paid off for the Rangers. It's a scary, scary thought to think of where this team would be had Montreal not traded with us for Scotty Gomez. Yikes! And, as usual, Henrik Lundqvist has been a pleasant gift for the Rangers. The guy truly is amazing and it showed just how important he is when he wasn't on the top of his game- the team struggled mightily. Does he give up softies? Yes. Does he have a weak high glove hand? Yes. But without this guy, we might have John Tavares right now.

Before I bid my farewell, here's something (albeit silly) for us to all enjoy. A nice little video of all your favorite Rangers: http://elfyourself.jibjab.com/view/O0zpIybBAtefw3dY

Happy holidays, everyone. Stay safe. And most importantly... LET'S-GO-RAN-GERS!

-- Anonymous Guest Blogger


The Math Doesn't Add Up

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

48 shots, 2 goals, and another loss (although it was in a shoot out) for the New York Rangers. I hate to beat a dead horse here, but I’m going to anyways. I’ve heard it from all angles now, “Get rid of Slats”, “Fire Torts”, “Lundqvist needs to play better”, “Get rid of the big salaries”, etc. one can debate and argue about all of the above. There’s no question about it. I’ve got absolutely no problem hearing an listening to passionate, hardcore Rangers fans. It’s your inherit right to assess and gripe about your beloved team.

Now, when I say I’m gonna beat a dead horse- here it is. It’s going to sound much like my previous blog entry! Scoring is a state of mind. To score, you have to be relentless and bear down with all you can- period. I did not see this last night and I have not seen it in quite a while. It’s ridiculous to lay blame at management’s feet. Management doesn’t put on a jockstrap, skate, or shoot. More importantly, management does not score for you. We can debate the players that have been brought in forever (and I know you all will) but how’s this? 88 goals for, 96 goals against. Not very good!

You can do the math anyway that you wish and it still stays the same. This, again, is a players only problem that was created by players and only players can solve it! With back-to-back games coming up against the rival Islanders, it’s critical that the Rangers find that elusive scoring touch that has yet again gone missing in action. If not, well, you know…

Sorry if I bored you with this one, but it truly fits (again). 48 shots and only 2 goals? Ugh! Over and out!


Can you say "Frustrating"?

Monday, December 7, 2009

After a good road win in Buffalo against a stubborn defensive Sabres squad, the Rangers came home in less than 24 hours to take on the Detroit Red Wings. The Rangers were hoping to make it 2 in a row and get headed in the right direction. Unfortauntely for the Rangers and their fans- the boys in blue found a way to let victory slip through their hands with a 3-1 loss.

The Rangers went 0-3 on the PP in the third period which proved costly as Henrik Lundqvist let in a soft goal with just over 2 minutes to play. The goal ended what I would call a very frustrating game for the players, coaches, and fans. Did the Rangers deserve better? Probably. But when things break down and scoring is scarce- little mistakes become big ones. Those who want to lay the blame on the King, have at it. Yes, he has not played up to his standards. But I ask- where would this team be without Lundqvist? This team has forgotten how to score and the pressure on Hank is 10 times what it should be. That alone makes it frustrating for all involved.

I can understand not scoring goals against Ryan Miller, but not scoring against Jimmy Howard? Who is he? You have got to be kidding me! It seems like a broken record for the Blueshirts that has continued on from years past. The lack of scoring is so evident now that I had to take a good look at the stats for the Rangers squad. Gaborik is obviously a fantastic scoring machine, as we all know. However, if you look at the players after him and his 21 goals- boy does it sink like the Titanic! The next 5 leaders goal totals are 6, 6, 5, 5, and 5. Not good! Way too big of a discrepancy from the top to the next 5. Coach John Tortorella has tried every coaching trick in the book. Juggling lines, benchings, sitting players out, giving players more ice time, putting players on the PP… and still nothing seems to work. I wonder sometimes how players can get to the NHL level and once they are there, they forget the basic fundamental of the game (scoring)!

With the Blackhawks coming up next on the road, the Rangers are in for another tough one. This is no time for the players to feel sorry for themselves. They made this mess and only they can get themselves out of it! What other choice do you, as a player, have?

As for my other team, the Quinnipiac Bobcats got sent back to Earth this weekend with 2 straight losses (7-4 to Yale and 2-1 to Brown) and have fallen to #7 in the country. They have no excuses because in reality, they just got outworked by both teams. If you don’t put in the effort and energy, you will lose. It’s fairly simple. I still believe in this team and I hope they learned a big lesson with these losses. Over and out!


A .500 Hockey Club

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Well folks, after a 7-1-0 start the New York Rangers are now a .500 hockey club. With a 5-2 loss at home to the defending Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins, the Blueshirts record now stands are a very average 13-13-1. How could this happen?

When this year’s version of the New York Rangers broke camp there was much anticipation and excitement with new additions and youth being injected into the lineup. I, for one, have to admit that I was drinking the Kool-Aid- big time! Why wouldn’t I? It was obvious to me that the talent level had been increased over the past few years. For anyone to not see that, well… that would be moronic! However, what has unfolded since then has Rangers fans, Rangers brass, and me scratching all of our collective heads. I think we can all point fingers at certain weaknesses that the Rangers have (and there are many). However, I truly believe that 2 areas have hurt this team the most.

First, when you don’t score goals on a consistent basis, you have to be able to tighten things up play-wise to be successful. By that I mean you have to play tough, grind-it-out, physical hockey. Oh yeah, smart hockey would help too! Every shift in a hockey game there’s a right move and a wrong move to make. It’s that simple. You, as a player, have a choice to make and the move that you make can either help or hurt the team. Right now the wrong moves are being made more often than the right ones. That comes down to just being intelligent enough to understand the game. Right now, that’s not happening for the Rangers. No excuses.

Secondly, the players themselves have lots of blame to take. We can argue back and forth about who’s a first liner or who’s a fourth liner (which is a common gripe by Rangers fans), that’s all fine and dandy. However, the real problem is a pattern of under-performing that continues to haunt the Rangers. Too many players have simply not lived up to their expectations and billings. It’s one thing to talk about effort and intangibles, but the reality is that stuff is just a way of sugarcoating the under performance or underachieving of a player. Outside of Marian Gaborik and Vinny Prospal up front- can anyone really look in the mirror and say to themselves that they have played to their potential? The same goes for the backline. Taking the rookies out of the argument, of course. Can even the "King" himself say that he’s played up to his potential? I think not. It doesn’t matter what style of play you are asked to master (Tortorella’s or Renney’s). You, as a player, must execute and that my friends is what it all comes down to! The Rangers have simply not been able to execute, play smart, or play tough/physical defensive hockey when called upon. I could go on about other problems, but these to me are the biggest ones!

Now, in other NHL news… I see that Alex Ovechkin has done it again. More reckless play and dirty hockey. Last night he issued a knee-on-knee collision with Carolina Hurricanes player, Tim Gleason. I’ve said in the past that Ovechkin’s the best individual skilled player in the NHL- there’s no doubt! I’ve also said that he’s right at the top when it comes to cheap shots and dirty play. You think Colin Campbell will finally place Ovechkin here he belongs in the “repeat offender” category? Or will the NHL continue to cover their eyes and continue to allow his actions to be non-issues? Show some guts and do the right thing here NHL!

Lastly, the Quinnipiac Bobcats are now ranked number 4 in the nation after a great come from behind overtime victory against the U-Mass Minutemen. Next on the schedule for the Bobcats are battles with Yale and Brown this upcoming Friday and Saturday. Keep it rolling boys!


  © Blogger templates Newspaper by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP