Monday, April 21, 2014

Rangers Fail To Rise On Easter Sunday

It was going to be a great day, a great Easter Sunday family dinner. It was at number two son's house and all four of my children were to be there including the rambling one from Louisiana. We would munch on antipasto, with all the goodies that phrase denotes and wash it down with wine, beer and an assortment of soft drinks. We would couple that with another Ranger win and move on to the lasagna, ham and lamb and the tasty supplements. We had seven different desserts including my all time favorite, strawberry shortcake. Number one son and number two son had both passed up luxury box tickets to partake in this family feast. The Rangers took a 2-0 first period lead and it looked like the Flyers were headed to their tenth straight loss at MSG.

No way. Instead the Rangers continued their streak, a bad one, a seven straight second game playoff  loss. The last time the Rangers won a game two on home ice was back in 1994 when they beat the Canucks in game two to even that series at a game apiece. The Rangers out shot the Flyers 33-25, the hits were 33-30 Flyers but the power play was telling. The Flyers were 2-3 and the Rangers 1-6.

Unlike the previous game, the Rangers were out worked in this one. Granted the Flyers got help from the refs when the Rangers were called for two 'diving' penalties after they were cheap shotted from behind by Andrew MacDonald and Wayne Simmonds. This negated two Ranger power plays. However, looking at the results of one for six, it's hard to make a case that the Rangers would have succeeded on the two extra PP's.

To be honest the Flyers out worked the Rangers in this one. They were on top of McDonagh every time he touched the puck and Ray Emery played a very good game. The Rangers were out hustled and out gritted. While the hits were fairly even the 'quality' of the hits were one sided. The coach might think some personnel changes in game three. Say Dan Carcillo and JT Miller for Boyle or Dorsett and Fast. Fast played just three shifts in the third and Dorsett played four. Neither had a shot on goal. Carcillo and Miller would add some much needed grit.

What could have been a sweep or five games now looks like a seven game war. Hopefully, we can step it up and make it a seven game war. Let's try the changes. For the record, the lasagna was outstanding, credit to my wife. Great job hon. Wish I could say the same to the Rangers and their coach.


FYI, did you know there is a Rise of the Rangers CD?
Rise of the Rangers - 1969-70
Play-by-Play excitement of the 1969-70 season, 1 Compact Disk, $12.99
Rise of the Rangers, 1969-70

However, the Rangers back then did not rise very far. The 1969-70 NY Rangers lost in the first round to Boston, 4-2. Bonus points if you can ID the goalie pictured above.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Rangers Stick It To Flyers

While it was 1-1 mid way through the third the Rangers were playing with purpose, discipline and in all honesty a certain domination and then it happened. The less disciplined Flyers, in the person of rookie forward, Jason Akeson, accidental clipped Carl Hagelin on the lip, while falling to the ice, which resulted in a double minor to the Flyers and instant eruption by the Rangers.

In a span of 47 seconds the Rangers scored two goals to take a 3-1 lead and eventually a 1-0 series lead. The goal scorers were Brad Richards and Derek Stepan and Martin St. Louis assisted on both goals. Zuccarello had opened the scoring for the Rangers as his backhander tied the score in the first and Carl Hagelin closed out the scoring with about five minutes left.

Good signs which bode well for the rest of the series. Richards and St. Louis, one goal and four assists reuniting their Stanley Cup run with Tampa Bay. This is the ninth straight loss that the Flyers have suffered at MSG. Our fourth line shut down the Flyers top line of Giroux, Hartnell and Voracek with only two shots. Our defense was stifling, holding the Flyers to only 15 shots. The best defense is a good offense.

Lundqvist made 14 saves and backup goalie Emery had 32 for the Flyers. Flyer starter Steve Mason is a probable for Saturday. However, if the Rangers play with the same discipline and determination they showed last night, it won't matter and we will go to Philly leading two games to none. When they win game one at home the Rangers are 21-6 in playoff series, another good sign. Lets keep it going. Let's go Rangers.