Sunday, February 10, 2008

28-24-7: Capitalized

After going period-by-period yesterday, I will just throw some random stuff out there for today's 3-2 loss to the Caps.

*Why is it that Callahan takes punches after the whistle, and Prucha gets boarded and yet no Cap is taken out in retribution? Speaking of Pru, when he goes out with an injury, you know its bad. As bad as he has been, he still gives maximum effort so his loss will hurt.

*Seeing Tom Poti still makes me angry, and seeing him skate through the Rangers in the first period (only to blow the shot) made me sick to my stomach. I'm still hoping to get his autograph someday - "Dear Scott, I hate you too, love, Tom Poti."

*Renney says the Rangers take too many penalties, especially early, so what happens? They take an early penalty then their usually tough penalty kill falls apart, leaving a loose puck for Ovie, the best player in the NHL. Not SMRT.

*Watching Ovie play is an utter delight. He loves to play, he gets his nose dirty, and - oh yeah - he is really, really good. I wish we had a superstar on our team.

*I will meet some opposition on this one but I think Hollweg had a solid game. That call in the last minute was courtesty of some good acting by Mike Green so don't even throw that back up. Hollweg hit, was solid in the Rangers end, and even earned himself a few scoring chances.

*Interesting comparison: Vally vs Ollie the Goalie. Ollie is showing his age (that second goal was weak, great for the Rangers, but weak), while Vally is looking good playing the same type of stand-up/hybrid goaltending style to solid results.

*Interesting thought: why not try Blair Betts on the point on the power play? He can move the puck well and is exceptional defensively. Just a thought ... it isn't like our power play can get much worse, it went 0-6 today.

*Donald Brashear is an animal. He gives tough guys a bad name in the NHL. What a goon.

*How soon until the Garden faithful boo Jagr the way the MCI crowd does every time he touches the puck? In all seriousness, Jagr was actually pretty good defensively in this game. He just has no confidence in his shot. Washington doesn't have a big, good defenseman to hound him all game, he should have capitalized (pun intended).

*Why is it that while the Jagr power play unit has been positively useless of late, that Renney puts them on the ice with the game even at two with five minutes left in the game? And just the same, with just over a minute left in a tie game, why is the fourth line on? Are we that desperate for points? Nevermind, we are ...

*Say what you want, but I don't think that losing this game was a backbreaker. When we miss the playoffs, all of the losses to the Western Conference teams will be the real reason why. Going 0-7-2 with one to go is inexcusable, especially when you consider that Los Angeles, Phoenix and Edmonton are included in that.

*Jarkko Ruutu fought Steve Downie in the Flyers/Pens game ... there is just no one you can root for in that battle of dirty players. The Rangers fought in the Montreal, Anaheim and Philly games and walked away with two wins (they probably could have gotten the Ducks if Hank wasn't so terrible). So why didn't they play with the same physical edge against Washington? Fear of getting penalties? Yeah, that worked ...

*PHW Three Stars
3-Sean Avery - one goal.
2-Boyd Gordon - one goal.
1-Ollie the Goalie - 31 saves.

Scotty Hockey Three Stars
3-Cally - Best Ranger on the ice, Cally looked like the catalyst he was when he first came up last year.
2-Mike Green - I'm giving him a star because I can't award an Oscar. When Hollweg came near him he went down like a ton of bricks and earned the power play that won the game. Why can't Jagr learn from him??
1-Ovie - I said it before, I'll say it again, best player in the league, by far.


minnesota-mattcullen said...

yeah, you are going to get flak for your idiotic loyalty to Hollweg. Not only was he bad, he was the worst Ranger on the ice. His terrible line was on the ice at the end of the second, skating aimlessly, when the Caps tied it up. He also ruined a perfect pass from Betts by shooting right into Kolzig's pads. Lastly, he took a dumb penalty that cost us the game. He is a boneheaded player, and when Hossa and Shanny are healthy, instead of sending Callahan or Dawes down, Hollweg needs to go. And while I will place most of the blame on Hollweg, some needs to go to Renney for having way too much confidence in that line and putting them on the ice in key spots. Also, Jagr had a solid game and made a great pass to Avery, where he go robbed. I thought you were finally turning a corner, as you started to blame Hollweg for some stuff, but you are taking two steps back by not calling him out on this terrible game.

Lastly, the best Ranger today was Staal, who didn't back down to Ovechkin, followed him the whole game, and limited him after that first goal. Give props where they are due.

Scotty Hockey said...

Avery wasn't robbed, he shot the puck right into Kolzig's pad, just the same as Hollweg - no matter what Joe ranted and raved; had Avery lifted the puck he would have had a goal. If you want to call someone out for blowing a bonafide scoring chance, then look at Drury because he missed an empty net.

Now how do you think Staal was the best Ranger on the ice as he deflected the game-winning goal in, was hammered in the corners and contributed nothing offensively. I like Staal, a lot, but this was far from his best performance and he was far from the best Ranger out there. I stand by Cally for that nomination but Vally and Gomez also deserve applause.

minnesota-mattcullen said...

So now you're going to attack the "underachieving" Drury again? He did have a goal today, and has 6 in the last 7 games. He might have missed an open net, but if he didn't get that other goal with his heads-up play, the game would have never gone into OT. Ovechkin is a player who has 47 goals this year, and scored 4 against Montreal. The fact that his one goal was on a PP and was a goal anybody could have finished doesn't show the effectiveness of Staal? He hammered Ovechkin all game and Ovechkin wasn't the biggest factor in the 2nd or 3rd because of Staal, Green was. Lastly, although he deflected the OT winner, it was pretty obvious that the Caps would have scored anyways with a 1:30 4 on 3 and Ovechkin on the ice. The real blame there goes to Hollweg.

Who would you rather have on Ovechkin than Staal? Probably your boy Girardi, who would have been terrible against him.

Scotty Hockey said...

As you have been reading, I have given more and more credit to Drury of late and have been very impressed with his effort and their results. But having scored a goal already or not, he missed an empty net that could have won the game.

Its obvious that the Caps would have scored? Really? The Rangers penalty killers were 10th in the league with 83% going into the game. The Caps power play? 20th at 16.7%. I wouldn't say that it was obvious that they would have ended it.

As you are going to blame Hollweg no matter what, numbers are pointless, so think what you like. I called it as I saw it; I think Drury needed to finish and I think Green took a dive. You boy Jagr could have learned a lesson from the young defenseman as his pride has kept him from actually helping the team. He doesn't want to go down and draw penalties, he wastes time and turns over the puck on the power plays the team does get ... why is he here again?

minnesota-mattcullen said...

Let me just get this straight, you are advocating diving, right? I'm glad that's the type of hockey you enjoy. You didn't address my main point, which is who would you want out there against the caps instead of Staal? Also, it was not just a PP for the Caps, a 4 on 3 is just as effective as a 5 on 3, as every analyst has pointed out, so the numbers you put out are irrelevant. I'm sure the Caps 5 on 3 numbers are great, because Ovechkin can skate around anyone.

Scotty Hockey said...

While I am loathe to advocate diving, I am advocating Jagr diving. I would rather see him get pummeled and go down - drawing a penalty - than see him get pummeled, lose the puck and become a total nonfactor. BTW - great article by Brooksie on Jagr today.

Ok, this is the last I am saying on this, I LIKE STAAL. I am not saying that he shouldn't have covered Ovie; I am just saying that I do not think he was the best Ranger out there today.

minnesota-mattcullen said...

I'll counter that by asking you to read Dellapina's blog entry following today's game. After that, come back to me and refute the points he makes, which I have been telling you all season.

I understand that the reason you are staying on this with Jagr in nearly every post is because you are wrong with every other angle you've taken this year, but please try to look at it from an unbiased point of view. You were wrong about Gomez, leaving him off your olympic roster and saying the Rangers shouldn't have signed him, and he's our best player now. You were wrong about Drury, calling him underachieving. You were wrong about Girardi, Staal is our best defenseman, and he and Tyuts have been terrible the last month or so.

Scotty Hockey said...

Goddamn, you just don't quit do you?

Ok, I haven't been wrong about anything. I still don't think Gomez should have been signed for seven years, although he may have a place in Vancouver in 2010. I still believe that Drury was underachieving when I wrote that he was, and I was far from the only one. And I still believe that Girardi was our best defenseman when I wrote that he was, as Staal is getting better every game as he gets experience. Not to mention that he has earned himself more and more minutes and put himself on the top defensive pairing. Put things in context before throwing accusations out there.

And countering Larry Brooks with John Dellapina is just a matter of opinion, that simple. Relax dude, you won't change my opinion as I won't change yours. If you think mine is so wrong, just stop reading and stop commenting, that simple.

Brother P said...

You guys need to kiss and make up. I just got one thing to say about Jagr and diving....Last time I saw Jagr take a fall both him and the guy who took him down got called for a penalty. I believe it was against the Hurricanes. The Refs blow, I hate them all. It always seems like the Rangers come out on the wrong side with the zebras.

minnesota-mattcullen said...

Scotty, I've come up with your perfect lineup for the Rangers, tell me what you think:

First line: Hollweg-Moore-Ortmeyer
Second line: Dawes-Betts-Orr
Third line: Rucinsky-Dubinsky-Callahan
Fourth line: Avery-Gomez-Prucha (swing over to RW)

Girardi-Tyutin (they get all 60 mintues)

In net: Miika Wiikman

Tell me what you think.