Friday, November 30, 2007

14-9-2: Rangers Stars Finally Show Up

Well, thank goodness for that. If the Rangers stars remained M.I.A. and we lost to the Islanders again, you probably could have started looking for new blogs to read as I turned into a raving, incoherent lunatic. At least now, with a 4-2 win, you still have me mostly coherent!

Mostly ...

*OMFriggin'G, Jagr, Drury and Gomez all scored ... in the same game! Who'da thunk it? And Dubi's goal, which was beautiful, had a lot to do with Jagr drawing the defense before making a nice pass to Marty Straka.

*Aside from that play, Straka had a miserable game that resulted in me pleading for him to go back on the IR. He was awful on the point on the power play, he blew several feeds and defensive assignments.

*While that doesn't surprise me, Jagr's goal did. It was astounding. He got the puck, went into open space and snapped a wrist shot past DP for the first goal of the game. It was a sweet play that I haven't seen from him since Super Mario was his babysitter.

*Hank really didn't play all that well. Yes, he survived a few pile-ons by the Isles late, but both goals against were softer than Snuggles the Bear. I like Richard Park, but there is no reason for him to get a five-hole goal through Hank's pads. Maybe someone with actual skill can pull that off, but not Richard Park. And I like him, seriously, because he is the Isles Ortmeyer with a few more goals, but none should ever come against the Rangers.

*There is no reason, other than Ted Nolan, for the Rangers to cling to a one-goal lead to a team that played like they played a game the night before (which the Isles did), I always wanted Nolan to be the Rangers coach; instead we are led by KC and the Sunshine Band who would rather dance the night away than lay down the law and discipline lazy/incompetent players who aren't pulling their own weight.

*Speaking of such - HOSSAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA. I said it before, and apparently I will have to keep saying it, but please, someone put him out of my misery. I understand that with Sean Avery out there is some kind of desire to keep a full roster, but I also understand that Greg Moore and Nigel Dawes are kicking ass in the AHL - there Eric, I mentioned both the injury and the availability of better options than Hossa, although at this point I think that any other NHL/AHL/ECHL/MAHL/SPHL player would do a better job or at least show more passion on the ice.

*I mentioned the Avery injury; some people, myself included, thought that Avery's absence would result in a nice long losing streak for the Blueshirts. If the big paycheck players keep showing up to the rink, then the team might avoid it. Unfortunately, my faith is such that I won't take any bets, even with the win.

*It was nice to see someone stand up to Chris Simon, but Colton Orr's tussle with the Barbarian was over in seconds with no real damage done.

*Orr, Hollweg and Bettsy didn't really have all that great a game. There, I said it. Renney used them sparingly - both times immediately after the Rangers took two goal leads - and they still got pinned in their own zone and gave up a goal. As I mentioned the other day, The Kind Commander seems to think that they can be a solid offensive, grinding line that goes to the net. Games like this prove that they have a long way to go before they get to that point.

*One added note - apparently sissy mary Radek Martinek is claiming Ryan Hollweg threatened to rip all of the stitches out of his face. If that is true, then good - this league needs rivalries and this kind of thing just adds fuel to the fire. Ryan was defending his fellow teammate, and Martinek is a soft European who apparently has delicate sensibilities and had his feelings hurt by the big, bad American. Boo hoo. Let's Go Rangers!

*For the first time this season, I have to say that I was disappointed by Girardi and Toots. They didn't play anywhere near the level that they had and it hurt the team. Kinda sad. Just don't let it happen again!

*Before getting to the three stars, some other random stuff - Cally came back and had one great shift but looked rusty; Prucha gets abused more than alter boys and yet continues to go to the tough spots and work; and I can't wait for the Rangers to find a cheaper, defensively-sound replacement for Paul Mara and his $3 mil salary.

*PHW Three Stars:

Scotty Hockey Three Stars
3-Marc Staal/Jason Strudwick - They weren't playing together this game but both were really solid in their own zone and made smart plays to relieve Isles pressure.
2-Ted Nolan - The Isles could have come out flat or tired, hung over from their game against Ottawa, They didn't, they made a game out of it. They were a little tired at the end, but they hung in there.
1-Jagr - Oh my, I can't believe I just typed that, but since he acts like a moody child, I guess we have to laud every little accomplishment or risk losing him for good so yay! Gold Star for you Jags! Woo hoo!


The Dark Ranger said...

Do I hear optimism echoing throughout Blueshirt blogs across the land? Cautiously happy? As they say, trust.but verify.

It was nail biting at times, as I've now come to not trust a 2-point lead with our team. I hate to say it, but collectively they have gotten better than our first two meetings with Ottawa (minus coaching, agreed!)and perhaps we will see a little of last night's chemistry reemerge on Saturday!!?

Hossa needs to go back home. Malik needs to stay unhealthy. And Jags? Well, he'll just remain a SUPERSTAR (for a day).


Anonymous said...

You are way to hard on Jagr. I understand he hasn't YET been the superstar we need him to be but he still has 20 points in 25 games and we are still winning games. In the last 2 games he has started to shoot the puck a bit more and I got a feeling he is going to get hot. I hope we can pull out a win Saturday.

Scotty Hockey said...

Hey TDR - I was relatively optimistic for most of this season, even though the slow start so speak for yourself, lol. And its been nail biting for most of the time - this team is giving me an ulcer.

And jagr supporter - that name sounds strangely lewd - but whatever, by my count, eight of Jagr's assists were secondary. And secondary assists really just mean that he had the puck before someone else set up the actual goal. As for his goals, he has two in his last seven games and one was scored by the other team's defenseman ... so aside from the really nice goal last night, he has been a shadow of himself for the better part of this month. We will see which one shows up tomorrow ...