Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Ranger's Roll Thru Western Canada

It wasn't like Sherman rolling through the south but it was very productive all the same. The Rangers ran off three straight in western Canada, and have now won four in a row heading to Carolina for the start of a home and home. The Rangers are clicking on all cylinders. Coming off player of the week last week, Lundqvist continued his fine play. He made 29 saves as the Flames used two goalies, Ramo and Hiller. All four goals were scored off Ramo, Hagelin had an empty netter.

Nash is stoking the Ranger resurgence. He had two goals, one a short handed, and now has 20 goals as he heads for the magical 50 goal mark. Also encouraging was that two scoreless streaks were ended. Kreider snapped a 13 game scoreless streak and Stepan snapped an 8 game streak.

This was no crème puff streak. Vancouver sits in the number two spot in the Pacific and Calgary is fourth. However, Calgary lost its sixth straight, but do have 36 pts in 32 games. They are young, fast but undisciplined right now. Bob Hartley seems to be safe for now.

So now on to a weekend clash with Carolina, last in the entire East. Beware of the trap game. Beware.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Lundqvist Blanks Oilers

I missed last night's game due to a family function, it's that time of the year, but the Rangers seem to be getting it together in western Canada. Lundqvist won back to back nights with an easy shutout. The defense stepped up again with a goal by Dan Giradi. And another Ranger got the mumps.

What is this with the mumps? I had the mumps as a kid and it's strange to hear grownups getting the mumps. Sydney Crosby got the mumps and now Brassard got the mumps. I thought all these diseases were eradicated but they seem to be making a comeback. Why? Who knows. I only hope that Santa doesn't get the mumps. The kids would be disappointed.

Back to the Rangers. The defense looks like it's got its act together, now to get the offense rolling. Next stop is tomorrow night in Calgary. Promise not to miss that one. Recollection is that we usually have problems in Calgary. Hopefully, that's a wrong recollection. But we seem to be going in the right direction and let's keep going. Also, no more mumps.

Sunday, December 14, 2014

Rangers Blitz Canucks

The sermon at mass today was about suffering and pain leading to joy and redemption. Case studies were St. Paul and St. Francis of Assisi. Both suffered greatly from persecution and illness and both received great joy and sainthood. So there is good news for Ranger fans. Who has suffered more in sports over the years? Okay, Jet fans, get in line. So the question is. Continue the suffering and then-Sainthood? Stop the suffering, forget Sainthood, and win a Cup?

Last night was one of those head scratching games. How, all of a sudden, could we be so good, no, so great? A three goal blitz in the first period, covering all of 4 minutes and ten seconds, and suddenly the Rangers were up 3-0. Bam! Bam! Bam! McDonagh, his first of the year. JT Miller, his third, and Zuccarello, his 5th. The onslaught continued in the second with Staal, his first, and then Zuccarello on as beautiful play one could see. Brassard to Nash, back to a speeding Brassard, and then a beauty to Zuccarello, in front of the net for his second of the game and sixth of the year. 5-0 going into the third. Nick Bonino ended the shut out for Lundqvist who made 29 saves. Ryan Miller, the ex-Sabre made 19. Nash and Brassard had two assists each. The three stars were McDonagh (1), Nash (2) and Zuccarello (3).

Good start to the western Canada  trip. Next stop, Edmonton, and then Calgary. Good to see the defense getting offensive. JT Miller has played great since coming back from Hartford, with three goals. Unfortunately, that leaves Kreider out of the top six, but if he finds his game that would give us a potent fourth line. But that's not a negative that's a positive. Miller and Kreider are both young, fast, strong and tough.

Let's get this suffering off of our backs. It was okay for St. Paul and St. Francis of Assisi. They were Saints, who suffered long and hard. Us? Mere mortals who have suffered long and hard being Ranger fans.  Let us pray.

ICINGS: The T/Birds pulled off their biggest win of the season Friday night beating a good Sachem team 7-3. The T/Birds are now 4-7. Sachem dropped to 6-5. Nicholas was a plus three.

NHL Tweets