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Posts Tagged ‘rangers’

You’ve heard all of the complaints:

  • The Rangers can’t score!
  • They have so much talent (allegedly) but their offense is stagnant and their power play is putrid.
  • They are a team of second-fiddles being paid first-fiddle money.

And the retorts?

  • Renney is a defense-first coach.
  • This team will win with solid goaltending and solid defense.
  • Drury and Gomez might not score 25 goals, but they add so much on the defensive end (and gosh, Drury is just soooo clutch!)

Well, the team that gave up 10 goals to Dallas was absolutely abysmal.  At one point, Joe Micheletti even called out the Rangers for too much stick-checking and not enough body-checking.  Welcome to the 2008-2009 season Joe!  I’ve only been saying that all freakin’ year.  If Joe notices it, it has to be reallllly egregious.

And that was the effort the Rangers put forth after stinking out the joint on Graves night?  THAT was the best they could muster after Renney put the team through a “wake UP people!” puck-less practice??

You could see it in the effort.  You could see it in the body language.  This team has quit on Renney.  Let’s hope they haven’t quit on the season.

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20mar07_antropov

Dear Glen Sather: This dude is a beast. Love, 5-hole.com

It’s that time of the season again.  Yes, the annual trading frenzy as fading teams try to get something worthwhile for their unrestricted free agents.  The NHL trade deadline is March 4.  Take a look at this list of the top 50 UFA’s from the 8 worst teams in the league.  I like the Maple Leafs’ big power winger Nik Antropov.  And, with a cap hit of just over $2 million, I hope the Rangers like him too.

Let’s take a look at the games tonight.  We have some good matchups (i.e. Rangers-Ducks, Wings-Coyotes) and some complete mismatches.  Speaking of mismatches… in my opinion, the standard play for the *Gimmie* is to bet on the biggest mismatch, which would presumably be the safest bet.  Tonight, we have the Canadiens taking on the Thrashers (#5 vs #29) and the Capitals playing the Senators (#4 vs #28).  While we all agree on the picks (Habs and Caps), none of us picked either team as our gimmie.  Does that mean we smell upsets?  Or do we all just hate the Habs and we’re just too afraid to pick the inconsistent Caps on the road?  In other news, Eric picked the Hurricanes as his gimmie against the Penguins.  He must know something I don’t.

On to the picks!

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I'm converting.

I'm converting.

In this edition of 5-hole.com Pick ’em, we feature our first ever dueling gimmies.  That’s right… I picked the Devils and made them my gimmie, while Eric picked the Blue Jackets as his gimmie.  (Note to MSG Plus: we expect a commission for bumping up the ratings for tonight’s game).

In other news, this woman decided to emulate Chris Simon (or would it be Marty McSorley?)  Either way, not the best role model.  Maybe she was outraged at the lovely C-cups on the Virgin Mary.  (Ed note: niiice. I like.)

On to the picks…

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At least that’s what Bob McCown of The Fan 590 – Toronto’s Sports Radio – is reporting.  Here’s the direct quote from their Twitter:  “Bob McCown reports a source close to Mats Sundin says he will sign with the New York Rangers any day now.”

And Sam Weinman is reporting that the Rangers have offered Sundin a “framework” of what could be made available if Sundin selected the Rangers, which as far as I can tell means that the Rangers will be trying to move salaries and give him as much money as they possibly can.

I have a few thoughts on this:

1.  The Rangers will have a whole lot of centers and not a lot of wingers.

2.  If the Rangers move anyone, it will probably be one of their expensive Defensemen.  Rozsival is the most likely to be sent packing, although I suppose Redden is a possibility.  I’m not sure what the Rangers can expect in return for Rozy and his -13 plus/minus.

3.  This would mean Corey Potter will probably get called up to the big show on a permanent basis.  That’s good.  It also means that we would be stuck with Kalinin and his -16 for the rest of the season.  That’s bad.  I was hoping Potter would take Kalinin’s place.  It’s still a possibility that the Rangers could just waive Kalinin (and his $2.1 million contract).  Dear Glen Sather, PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE do this.  Regards, 5-hole blog.

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The Rangers freed up some room on their cap by waiving Rissmiller.  (Ideally for the Rangers, nobody else will claim him, and he will end up in Hartford for the season.)

I don’t know about everyone else, but I’d much rather see Brendan Shanahan skating along side Drury and Naslund than a constantly rotating winger group of Prucha, Fritsche, and Rissmiller.

Now, if the Rangers would just sign the guy already.

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OK they lost.  It was bound to happen eventually.  Let’s just move on and see if they can rebound from such a terrible outing.

There are a few roster changes to note:

  • Stephen Valiquette will get the start tonight to give Henrik Lundqvist a break for tomorrow’s game in Detroit.
  • Lauri Korpikoski will be scratched with an arm or shoulder injury.
  • Nigel Dawes and Dan Fritsche will most likely be the wingers on the third line centered by Ryan Callahan.
    • This would be Ryan’s first game as a Center for the Rangers.
  • Patrick Rissmiller and Petr Prucha are the healthy scratches.

There will be no changes made to line of Naslund-Gomez-Drury.  I think Renney is going to give them 1 or 2 more games before he breaks them up.

Look for fatigue to start playing a bigger role in games.  This is the Rangers’ 5th game in 8 nights and is their 7th game of the season.  The Maple Leafs are only playing their 4th game of the season and 3rd game in the same 8 days.  Their last game was on Monday night against the St. Louis Blues.  They lost 5-4 in the skills competition.

Ryan Hollweg will not play tonight as he is serving his second suspension this season.

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The Rangers 2007 first round draft pick died today near the end of Omsk’s KHL game. He and Jaromir Jagr collided right before the incident.

From Puck Daddy:

According to comments on SportBox.ru it was [Jaromir] Jagr’s elbow. Jagr is Cherepanov’s teammate. Apparently Jagr didn’t see him. Afterwards Jagr was shouting “Wake up Alexei” and was in tears.

From Rangers Report:

We are extremely saddened by the tragic passing of Alexei,” Glen Sather said in a statement. “On behalf of the New York Rangers organization, I would like to extend our deepest sympathies to his family. Alexei was an intelligent, energetic young man, with tremendous talent and an extremely bright future.

From TSN:

Sources in Russia tell TSN that the ambulance that is normally at all games had already departed and had to be called back.

It is not clear exactly how long it took for Cherepanov to be transported from the rink to the hospital but one source in the arena told TSN it was “probably 15 or 20 minutes.”

Also, there is some question as to whether defibrillators at the arena were in good working order.

No further details are available at this point.

I expect the Rangers will do something before tonight’s game against the Devils.

All of us here at 5-hole are deeply saddened by the news. Our hearts go out to the family and friends of Alexei. This is truly terrible news.

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Aside from trading R.J. Umberger to Columbus and Sami Kapanen retiring, not very much went on with the Flyers this offseason.  Yes, last season they shot from the league basement to the Conference Finals, but they still got thrashed by our back-up goalie whenever we played them.   Stevie V posted a 3-0-1 record against them, including 2 shutouts and earned himself the nickname ‘Flyer Killer’.  And, since the team hasn’t changed much, hopefully this trend will continue.  By all accounts, Renney has already decided to start the Big Valvosky tonight against Skating Orange Turds Broadstreet Bullies.

 

Last Rangers game:

a 4-2 win over the Chicago Blackhawks in which the newly dubbed ‘Playstation Line’ kicked some ass, totaling 3 goals and 4 assists for 7 points.  Sweet tits, man.  Lundqvist made 30 saves on 32 shots, and puck control was beastly the majority of the night.  Me likey.

Eric EDIT!

Found this over at meltyourfaceoff.net.  It has to do with Sarah Palin dropping the puck at the game tonight in Philly. It’s hilarious.

More to come later including pictures from last night’s game.

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I guess you could call this a Season Preview but we’ll just call it the Game Preview. Also, today is my birthday!

Back on October 5, 2005, the New York Rangers played a game for the first time in over a year. The NHL was finally back after a lock-out that led to the cancellation of the entire 2004-05 season.

It had been 8 years since the Rangers had last made the playoffs–when they lost to the Philadelphia Flyers in the 1997 Eastern Conference Finals–and the idea that the Rangers were going to end the drought was ludicrous. That year, almost every “expert” had picked the Rangers to finish 30th in the NHL.

Honestly, did you have much faith in that team? Look at the lineup they sported for the 2005-2006 season opener against the Flyers:

Rucinsky-Nylander-Jagr
Straka-Ruccin-Hossa
Moore-Betts-Ward
Hollweg-Lundmark-Ortmeyer

Rozsival-Malik
Poti-Strudwick
Tyutin-Kasparaitis

Weekes
Lundqvist

Admit it. You looked at that team and thought, “We’re screwed!” But Slats was keeping his word; the Rangers were rebuilding. We couldn’t expect greatness in the first year. Honestly, I would have been content no matter what happened that season. But what happened that year stunned everybody.

The Rangers sat in first place in the Atlantic Division until the very last day of the season when they were passed by both the Devils and the Flyers. More importantly, for the first time since 1997, the Rangers had made the playoffs and Jaromir Jagr broke the Rangers single season records for both goals (54) and points (123).

Now fast forward to this season. The Rangers come into the game with a 2-0-0 record with two wins over the Tampa Bay Lightning last weekend in Prague.

Here is the line up that the Rangers sported for the first two games of the season:

Naslund-Gomez-Drury
Dawes-Dubinsky-Zherdev
Prucha-Korpikoski-Callahan
Voros-Betts-Orr

Rozsival-Redden
Girardi-Kalinin
Staal-Mara

Lundqvist
Valiquette

Only two, yes two, players from the 2005 opening night roster are still on the team. Only one of them actually played in that game! Petr Prucha was called up from Hartford soon after the start of the season and stayed up for most of it. But still that is only 3 players that remain from the October 5, 2005 to October 4, 2008. Speaking of Petr Prucha, of all the players currently on the roster, he has the most games played and most goals scored as a Ranger.

Looking ahead to this season, the Rangers are a younger, faster, more offensive minded team that can still shut things down when needed. The problem is that almost every offseason move the Rangers made is counting on the player playing better because of a change in scenery. So far, Naslund and Redden have scored goals. Zherdev has shown how wonderfully he can control the puck but has not finished. He does have the potential to set up many goals for Brandon Dubinsky. I really hope Zherdev doesn’t end up like Matt Cullen did with the Rangers.

There were some questions heading into this season about Dubinsky. Would he have the dreaded sophomore slump? Would he be able to produce without Jagr on his wing? We’re only 2 games into the season, but Dubinsky doesn’t look like he’s going to hit the proverbial wall any time soon. He was arguably the best player on the Rangers throughout the Preseason and has skated very well with new linemate Nikolai Zherdev.

Some other young players that must prove themselves are Nigel Dawes, Ryan Callahan, and believe it or not, Petr Prucha. Dawes and Callahan will most likely thrive in a faster and more offensive minded environment. As will Prucha who is scratched for tonights game. But Tom Renney has to give Prucha more ice time. At least some more time on the Power Play.

As for any predictions, I think the Rangers will fight for control of the Atlantic with the Penguins for the majority of the Season. They will probably end up finishing in second place in the division which is good enough for 4th or 5th in the Eastern Conference.

Tonight, the Rangers will hold their true home opener against the Chicago Blackhawks. This team made a big splash in the free agency market by signing Brian Campbell to an 8 year contract for about $56.8 million. They also improved in goal with the addition of Cristobal Huet. This team is young and looking to prove themselves. They were very close to making the playoffs last season and you can be sure that New Captain Jonathan Toews and Sophomore Patrick Kane will skate circles around our defense at least once.

Hopefully the Rangers can find their scoring and break out against Huet who they have been fairly good against in recent memory.

I will be at the game and I might snap some pictures. I’ll post them later tonight if I can along with the recap.

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I actually look like this.

I actually look like this.

Is this introduction and season preview horribly late? Yes. Is this probably not going to be published until after the season technically begins? Yes. But do you care all that much? Probably not. If you’re that pissed, blame Eric.

Allow me to introduce myself. My name is Rory, and I’m an angry, sarcastic, die-hard, 3rd-generation Ranger fan born in New York and raised in New Jersey. In addition to the Rangers, I love coffee, stiletto heels, and curly fries. Most likely due to my Ranger-fan-in-Jersey upbringing, the New Jersey Devils are the bane of my existence, and it is my personal belief that one of the most important things Lundqvist can do in his career will be to pummel Marty Brodeur in a team brawl until he oozes donut jelly from his man boobs chiseled athletic form.

That being said, I do hope y’all will find what I write, at the very least, amusing, as I do love ranting and raving about my beloved Rangers to anyone who can hear me, whether they want to listen or not. And this is a Rangers blog, so if you’re here and don’t want to hear(read) it, then, um, yeah that’s your business.

So anywhoozle, you’ve all read all summer about every reason why or why not we should or shouldn’t have let Jagr, Avery, and Shanahan go; and the same goes for signing Naslund, Redden, Zherdev, and blah blah blah. So I’m not going to bore the piss out of you by rehashing what you already know. But, since you are taking the time to read this, I’ll at least sum up my overall feelings. In bullet points! Yay!

  • I loved Jags. I don’t care about the prima-donna reputation or him sitting out in shootouts. I loved that man for everything he did for this team: bringing us back from being a league-wide joke. Not to mention his willingness to be open and honest about how the team was doing, good or bad, his humor, and, yes, that massive ass. So Naslund is going to have to work extra hard to win me over, which is his ultimate goal, of course.
  • Last year’s power play was basically a piece of butt crack lint with some spray glitter on it, so if Redden ends up blowing (Ed. Note: Not shooting the puck), oh well. How much worse could things get?
  • Love him or hate him, Sean Avery was, at the very least, entertaining. I’ll miss his borderline unsportsmanlike ass.
  • We signed a lot of key guys and spent a lot of money on the premise of them “benefiting from a change of scenery”. Not exactly a good plan, if you ask me.
  • In dumping both Marek Malik and Christian Backman, us fans have no immediate option for booing at MSG. I nominate Dimitri Kalinin, he seems to be shaping up pretty well for it.
  • The Rangers owe Brendan Shanahan an official ‘yes’ or ‘no’. Just letting it drift away and not saying anything is like breaking up with someone by just not calling them anymore and resetting your Facebook status to ‘Single’. Uncool, and super un-classy.
  • Lundqvist’s preseason had been somewhat worrisome, as is the situation with his knees slowly deteriorating. But the last couple of games he’s gotten his form back, and looks Kingly for the start of the season, so I’m willing to push that worried feeling to the backburner for now. He’s poised to make NHL history this season, potentially the first NHL goalie to post 30 wins in his first 4 seasons. Pretty awesome.
  • Speaking of Lundqvist, on an un-Ranger-related note, Eric made fun of me for drafting him to my fantasy team (go Bea Arthurs on Ice!), but I think this is Joel’s year to bust out and have an awesome year. You can quote me on that. But only if it comes true. (Ed. Note: Great Success will have great success this season.)

Alright, I’ve rambled enough. If you’ve made it this far, I applaud you. I’m very excited to be here at 5-Hole, and I hope y’all are just as excited as I am for this upcoming season.

LET’S GO RANGERS!

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