Posts Tagged ‘NHL’

The Rangers are on the road to take on the New Jersey Devils tonight at MSG West the Prudential Center in Newark, NJ.  The puck drops at 7 pm and can be seen nationally on Versus and TSN.


Hey y’all!  I know we’ve been terrible about updating for the last week or so, and we’re very very sorry, please don’t hate us.  Our poor little hearts can’t take it.  We promise to be better, jsut please don’t leave me for that  hot chick with the tongue ring us for another blog!

So the last time we saw our Rangers, they were shitting the bed and rolling around in it in Dallas, losing 10-2 to the Stars.  It was the first time the Rangers have given up 10 goals since April 9th, 1993 against Pittsburgh, and the Stars haven’t scored 10 goals in one game the entire time they have been in Dallas.  Terrific!

This is all Nastia Liukin's fault.  Bitch.

This is all Nastia Liukin's fault. Bitch.


To be entirely honest, I have quite possibly the lowest expectations for this team going into this game that I’ve had since before the lockout.  The die-hard fan in me wants to have faith and really believe they can pull it out and grind out a win, but good lord in heaven have they looked terrible the entire month of February.  So I’m not sure, let’s just hope it’s not a complete embarrassment.  We all know how I feel about the Devils.

I think we can say that we must never, ever vote Henrik into the All-Star Game.  Ever.  Clearly the dude needs a vacation at the mid-way point of the season, and this year he didn’t get it and it shows.  Hopefully the couple days off he got with the flu made up for it and he’ll be back in Kingly form tonight.  Hopefully.  Plus I think my t-shirt is cursed.  I ordered it and Hank played like hell in the ASG.  Now every time I sleep in it/wear it to the gym they lose.  And lose horribly.  Balls.  I like that shirt, too.

 Anyway, tonight’s really a toss up.  The Rangers are coming off of 4 straight losses, the Devils are coming off of two straight after being on a hot streak for a long time.  The Rangers could rebound with an awesome game and remind us why we all endure the misery of being a Ranger fan, because it will eventually pay off with glorious victory, or they will once again get embarrassed in spectacular fashion, and we can all storm MSG with torches and pitchforks.  Sound fun?  I think so.


In other(ish) news: Tonight is the first time the Rangers will be facing Brendan Shanahan, a former Ranger

Shanny. Shan-Shan. Shan-dog. Shan-diggity-dog.

Shanny. Shan-Shan. Shan-dog. Shan-diggity-dog.

 who Glen Sather let twist in the wind for the entire summer, preseason, and the better part of this season.  I loved Shanny, always did.  I was sad to see him go.  If the Rangers lose tonight, I hope it’s Shanny who scores the game-winner.  Yeah, I said it.

UPDATE: Courtesy of Steve Zipay, tonight’s lines:


Henrik Lundqvist will be back in net after missing the last game against Dallas with the flu.


Numbers breakdown:

Devils record: 33-17-3   –   8-2-0  in their last 10  –  15-10-1 at home

Rangers record: 29-19-5   –  5-4-1  in their last 10  –  13-11-2 on the road

Average goals scored in a game:

Devils: 3.04

Rangers: 2.40

Average goals allowed in a game:

Devils: 2.49

Rangers: 2.70

Power Play

Devils: 18.6%

Rangers: 14.9%

Penalty Kill:

Devils: 82%

Rangers: 86.6%

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Birthday Tackle

I am absolutely swamped with work today, so sadly, there will not any Birthday Punches today, because I just don’t have time.  Please try to hold back your tears.

However, today is Dominik Hasek’s 44th birthday, and I couldn’t leave him out just because I’m busy.  So I give you one of my favorite clips of “The Dominator”.  Enjoy!


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The Rangers are at home tonight against the Carolina Hurricanes.  The puck drops at 7pm and can be seen locally on MSG.  I forgot to set my DVR before I left for class this morning, so I can’t tell you what Center Ice channel it’s on.  My bad.

UPDATE: It’s on Game Channel 3 on the Center Ice package. Woo!

So, at last, the greatest celebration of the greatest team that ever played in the greatest city that ever existed All-Star Game is over.  We don’t have to hear about it anymore.  Don’t get me wrong, it was fun, and I know you all read and thoroughly enjoyed my coverage of the weekend(shameless plugshameless plug).  Right?  Say yes.  Say yes, dammit!  But I’m glad I don’t have to hear about it anymore.  Hank played pretty badly – for him anyway – but who cares?  It’s the All-Star Game!  He could have laid down in the crease and taken a nap and it wouldn’t have mattered.



Anyway, now we can get back to the regular season, and, more specifically, the push for the playoffs.  The Rangers currently sit 5th in the Eastern Conference with 60 points, 13 points behind conference leader Boston.  So at the moment, they’re making the playoffs, but don’t have home-ice advantage.  That may very well change in the coming months, we’ll see if it’s for the better or the worse.

The Rangers won their last three games going into the All-Star Break, and should be good and well-rested and ready to go on tear heading down the stretch.

The Hurricanes have been a bit streaky lately – they won their last two games before the break, but lost five straight before that.  So, we’ll see what tonight brings.

Prucha and Korpikoski are still in the lineup, and Aaron Voros and Dan Fritsche will most likely be healthy scratches.  Steve Valliquette will be in net for the Rangers, and Cam Ward will most likely be between the pipes for Carolina.

UPDATE: I lied, Prucha out, Voros in.

Photo credit: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Numbers breakdown:

Canes record: 23-20-5   –   5-5-0  in their last 10  –  11-10-4 on the road

Rangers record: 28-16-4   –  6-3-1  in their last 10  –  15-8-2 at home

Average goals scored in a game:

Canes: 2.50

Rangers: 2.48

Average goals allowed in a game:

Canes: 2.90

Rangers: 2.56

Power Play

Canes: 15.8%

Rangers: 15.2%

Penalty Kill:

Canes: 78.1%

Rangers: 87.6%

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Birthday Punches

This is the first of what should be and will hopefully be a daily feature here at 5-Hole: where we let you know who in the hockey world is celebrating their birthday today!  All active NHL players will be listed, as well as any retired players who have played a decent amount of games.  That dude that played 1 game into 1983 hasn’t earned the right to be acknowledged on this prestigious website.  You hear that?  He hasn’t earned it!


Liam Reddox – Edmonton Oilers- 23
DJ King – St. Louis Blues – 25
Carlo Colaiacovo – St. Louis Blues – 26
Patrice Brisebois – Montreal Canadiens – 38
Rhett Warrener  – Calgary Flames – 33
Tomi Kallio – 32
Dave Manson – 42
Mark Lawrence – 29
Alexander Godynyuk – 39
Brian Engblom – 54
Jiri Bubla – 59
Hector Marini – 52
Terry Harper – 69

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All-Star Game Live(ish) Ramblings

I know you’re all excited!  Get ready for the nonsense that goes through my mind watching these shenanigans.

And we’re off!

I love listening to Joe Michelletti trying to be a dramatic voice-over dude.

Oh yes, Extreme Cage Fighting.  Exactly what I want to watch.  Aww yeah.

Fun fact: Alex Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin are one of the pairs in the spinning circles suspended from the ceiling.  It’s part of their post-feud bonding.

Falling down seems to be the theme this weekend.

I think Tim Thomas and Henrik Lundqvist are going to be going on vacation together pretty soon.

Again, Dan Boyle is a cutie pie.

I can’t tell if the announcer is saying the introductions in half-English/half-French or if he’s just almost impossible to understand.

I’m pretty sure Hank’s facial expression is “Do you believe this shit?”

Ovie with the gum.

I seriously want one of the starters to trip and take out an couple Pee-Wees.  That would make my day.  Not because I’m a bad person, I just think it would be hilarious.

Don’t cry, Sid, don’t cry.

Get out the lotion and tissues, Montreal, it’s Vinny LeCav.

I love the Obama family t-shirt.  Awesome.  The way this guy is singing?  Not so much.

Oh dear LAWWD!  I am in heaven – a gospel version of O Canada?  They got my letter to Santa!!


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A Thought…

So after the Skills Competition I had a thought.  Maybe this is just me, being a Goalie Junkie, but I always think it’s somewhat unfair for the goalies during the All-Star Weekend.  I know I’m not the only one that thinks this, everyone has pretty much acknowledged that ASGs are no fun for goalies.  But I’ve always felt bad for them – it seems like they’re just props to help showcase the offensive talent in the league.  So, I’ve always thought that goalies need their own event.  And then once I have that thought, it is followed quickly by the realization that without shooters, they goalies would have nothing to do.  So here’s my ideas for Goalie All Star Events that will never come to be:

Rocket Goalies – This idea comes from Jackass: The Movie.  Or Jackass 2, I can’t remember which one this was in.  But anyway, there’s one part where Johnny Knoxville puts on a pair of rollerblades, and duct tapes a bunch of bottle rockets to the back of them, lit the rockets, and then tried to see how far he could get without falling down.  So for Rocket Goalies, the goalies would be in full gear, but have 3 bottle rockets affixed to each of their skates.  They would be in full gear, so they would be fully protected from getting hurt by falling, or from being burned by the rockets.  There would be two rounds; Round 1 would consist of the Conference Goalies facing off against each other, all three would line up at one goal line, the rockets would be lit, whoever makes it the furthest without falling wins and advances to the next round.  Round 2 is the winner of the East vs. the winner of the West.  Whoever makes it the furthest wins.  Hell yeah.

UPDATE: The guy who posted the video has embedding disabled, so here’s the link (leave it alone this time, Eric):


The Superman Slide – Again, two rounds: East vs. West and Winner takes Winner.  The three goalies line up at the goal line, skate to the blue line, and dive onto the ice.  Whoever slides the furthest and stays the straightest wins.

Goal-out –  Like the shootout, but the goalies are the shooters.  Like the trick shot contest this year, a junior level goalie would be in goal, but instead of forwards, the All Star voted goalies are doing the shooting.  The goalies have one minute to score as many goals as they can, in full goal gear.  Masks optional.  Using goal sticks, not regular sticks.  Whoever scores the most goals wins.

Are these suggestions ridiculous?  Hell yes.  Will they ever become part of the All-Star Skills competition?  Hell no.  But would it be fun as hell to watch if they did?  Abso-rootin-tootin-lutely(I can’t use the f-word on this blog).

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A couple of weeks ago, I was all set to boycott this year’s All Star Game.  The absolute joke that it had become pissed me off beyond hell.  I wasn’t going to watch, I had a nasty email almost done about what  disgrace the NHL had allowed to go on, with the Montreal fans installing programs which padded their votes to have all Canadiens players being the starting line-up.  I don’t give a shit that the ASG is in your town during your 100th season, that doesn’t give you the right to cheat and rob the rest of the league’s players and fans of seeing those players who SHOULD start actually start.

This picture has nothing to do with the ASG really, but I just think it's awesome. - Goalie punch!

This picture has nothing to do with the ASG really, but I just think it's awesome. - Goalie punch!


Anyway, so after all of my hemming and hawing about what a disgrace this year’s ASG was going to be and no one should watch it, the NHL did one thing right and named our boy Henrik Lundqvist to the Eastern Conference Reserves as the Ranger’s representative.  You know what that means?  It means I have to watch the game.  It means I have to care.  It also means I have to buy a t-shirt.  I’ve always thought that Hank deserved to be named the that All Star Team; but damn, why in hell did it have to be this year?  Oh well, we wish him luck.





Plus I get a new t-shirt!






On a completely unrelated note, my best friend Melissa lives in North Carolina, and this weekend apparently a bunch of the Carolina Hurricanes went on a golf weekend at the golf resort she works at, and today Ray Whitney asked her for a band aid.  

And Melissa gave him one of these:

These are the Band-Aids that Melissa carries with her and give to hockey players.  Well done Meliss, well done.

These are the Band-Aids that Melissa carries with her and gives to hockey players. Well done Meliss, well done.


Anywhoo – I realized last night that I don’t get the NHL Network, even though I have the Center Ice Package.  You have to pay for the the NHL Network separately.  Bull to the Shit.  So I’m deciding if I should forgo all the ridiculousness of the media day and just watch what’s on versus tomorrow, or if I should call Comcast and yell.  Any thoughts, you guys?


We here at 5-Hole will (hopefully) be updating during the festivities, so check back often!


P.S. I love Marc Staal even more now:



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The Rangers are away against the New York Islanders tonight – The puck drops at 7:00pm, and the game can be seen locally on MSG.

I’m gonna have to keep this clean, since I have been warned already (see my last postgame for the Islanders).  But, I will forge on, loyal 5-Holers.

Regina DiPietro will be watching from home.

Rick DiPietro will be watching from home.


I hate the Islanders.  I take that back – the Islanders piss me off.  They annoy me.  They’re like a pimple on my ass that keeps coming back.  They’re not really a threat, because they’re horrible – but they’re annoying as all hell.

That being said, the Rangers seem to be coming to the upswing of the regular mid-season slump.  Let’s hope I’m right about that.  I think I said that before the Montreal game, too.  But they’re not playing Montreal tonight, they’re playing the worst mother-effing team in the NHL.

Henrik Lundqvist will be back in net tonight.  In the last week, he’s had his first 2 shutouts of the season, which are the 18th and 19th of his NHL career, and also gave up 5 goals against Montreal – the first two of which were 90% his fault.  And I’m never one to blame Henrik for a goal.  Hopefully tonight will be more of what we saw from him in the games against Pittsburgh and Ottawa, not Montreal.

Joey MacDonald will be in net for the Islanders.  Rick DiPietro’s knee is giving him trouble again, which I can only guess was caused by him forgetting to wear kneepads. 😉

Numbers breakdown:

Islanders record: 12-26-4   –   2-7-1  in their last 10  –  7-9-2 at home

Rangers record: 25-15-4   –  4-4-2  in their last 10  –  11-7-2 on the road

Average goals scored in a game:

Islanders: 2.55

Rangers: 2.50

Average goals allowed in a game:

Islanders: 3.62

Rangers: 2.61

Power Play

Islanders: 17.9%

Rangers: 14%

Penalty Kill:

Islanders: 82.4%

Rangers: 87.7%

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One Puck at a Time

dsc_0298Adam Sherlip has kick-started a new initiative known as ‘The Hockey Volunteer’, which brings hockey to underprivileged kids in, shall we say, less-than-affluent parts of the world.  The initiative’s aim is the bring the happiness that hockey brings to all of us, to all of them; one puck at a time.

While THV officially began less than a month ago, for Adam, things began rolling two years ago when he was hired by the NY Islanders to work on Project Hope, where he got to see firsthand how hockey improved the lives of the children in the regions of Northeastern China that he visited with the project.  This experience made him want to share that joy with children all over the world.  Adam will soon be traveling to the Indian region of Ladakh, and then to Kashmir in the Himalayas.

In order to bring of the game we all love to underprivileged children around the world, we here at 5-Hole urge you to support ‘The Hockey Volunteer’ by visiting Adam’s website, http://hockeyvolunteer.blogspot.com, and contributing to the effort.  Adam accepts donations directly through the site, and also raises money through auctions of hockey memorabilia, including some (if I do say so myself) frickin’ sweet new items, all autographed and donated by the NHL, including pucks signed by Pascal LeClaire and Dan Ellis(respectively), and an Avs jersey signed by John-Michael Liles.

To find out more, visit Adam’s website: http://hockeyvolunteer.blogspot.com

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Dear Gary Bettman,

The last time I checked, you can’t do this in the National Hockey League:

I know you don’t want to bring the hammer down on your snugglebunny and object of your late night fantasies, but you should.  You really should.

Part-time Blogger, Full-time Hockey Fan.

For anyone who couldn’t quite figure out what was in that video, it was The Second Coming of Christ Sidney Crosby getting involved in a scrum in front of the net, and then skating up behind Atlanta defenseman Boris Valabik in a prone position on the ice, on all fours after fighting with another player, and sucker-punches him in the back of the head, and then repeatedly on the lower part of his body.  Upon another viewing, it looks like he decked him in the groin.  Seriously?

Had this been any other player, they would be suspended right now.  If Crosby had been the one getting punched, the guy who punched him would be out of the league without question.  Hell, he’d have been taken out back and shot during the next intermission.

We have seen hits like these before.  Specifically, this one(for some reason, no sound – sorry):

And this one:

Why is Crosby allowed to get away with practically the same thing that ended both of these two players’ careers?  Everyone knows how the Bertuzzi/Moore incident turned out, and Ranger fans know that that was the last game Jeff Beukeboom ever played, and Matt Johnson was suspended for 12 games, which at the time was fairly hefty.  Apparently, in the NHL, you have to end someone’s career or almost kill them for there to be any sort of penalty.

It’s not that I hate Sidney Crosby.  Yes, I despise the fact that he dives (he does), embellishes and looks like a mentally challenged duck.  But, I actually admire the fact that he’s been able to handle the immense pressure and expectations being put on him by the NHL.  They chose him to be the face of the league, and I commend him for not crumbling under the pressure.

That being said, I do think he gets away with some things that other players wouldn’t be able to.  This is one of those things.  However, unlike the Bertuzzi and Beukeboom incidents, what Crosby did wasn’t on it’s own, in the middle of open ice, much like those two were.  That doesn’t make it alright.  You can’t skate up behind a player who is down on all fours, surrounded by other players, and punch him in the back of the head, then proceed to wail on him, while he can’t defend himself.  I don’t care who you are, you cannot do that.  If he had done this to a Ranger, there more than likely would have been some sort of riot at MSG.  Unfortunately for Valabik, the Thrashers suck and no one cares about them, so this goes unnoticed.

As of right now, there has been no mention of a possible suspension for dear, dear Sidney, and I’ll bet you all the money in my bank account that there won’t be.  But I want to go on the record as saying that there should be, and it is disgraceful that just because he is deemed a ‘superstar,’ that he can commit unallowable, and downright cowardly acts of violence.

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