Friday, January 20, 2006

The Prince and The Prucha

You expect me to get excited about Michal Rozsival's game winning goal? Get excited and forget that he slapped a goal in for Pittsburgh over a fallen Lundqvist? Forget that he is constantly out of position and gives the puck away consistently? Forget it.

This is a game that the Rangers were lucky to win against a horrible hockey team. The Rangers have been terrible on this road trip. Sure we won the game last night, but I have news for Tom Renney and his struggling team right now. They need a wake up call. On the horizon are the improving Bruins, the red hot Devils and the consistently good Buffalo Sabres.

The Prince should have had a shutout.
The first goal by the Penguins' Sidney Crosby came off the leg of Jason Strudwick after a great save by Lundqvist which he kicked out off of Strudwick. Petr Prucha continued his strong play with two back handed goals giving him 23 goals on the year. He also had an assist.

With three tough games in four nights Tom Renney should go with Lundqvist in goal for all three games. The Devils are now six points behind us for fifth place and now is the time for the Rangers to make a statement. He had a decent rest, four days, and looked very sharp last night. These are the games when you need your best in there.

Speaking of the best, it is time to get Ryan Hollweg back in the lineup. If Renney insists on playing Hossa give Rucinsky a rest. He looks like he needs it. The top line looks moribund with him. Yes, Jagr got two assists but the spark seems to be missing. We need Hollweg's body checks and forechecking.

In that vein, the injury to Blair Betts has also hurt the team. He is the top faceoff man on the team and have you noticed how the penalty killing has gone south since his absence from the lineup? Darius Kasparaitis should return and that should be a big help. However, I would keep Thomas Pock in the lineup and move Jason Strudwick up to forward, as a backup, in case Kaspy gets injured again.

Big three games coming up. With only 35 games to go it is time for the team to regroup and make a statement.

ICINGS: Alexander Ovechkin's falling-backward, over-the-head, twisting goal Monday in Phoenix is being called "one of the greatest plays" in the history of the NHL. Here is the video link. The Washington Post also did a frame-by-frame breakdown on how he did it. If someone can figure out how to turn that into a poster a'la Bobby Orr then it might qualify.
[via Off Wing Opinion]

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  • Shari said...

    Hi- You echoed my sentiments exactly-I said the same things about Hank and Holleweg on my blog.

    I feel alot of these stupid decisions concerneing the rookies and playing them comes from that boob Glen Sather telling Renney this is what he wants-he just loves to sit young talent in favor of Vets who just don't get it done at times. If it were not for the salary cap imposed after the lockout this team would be comprised of nothing but over the hill fossils that they should have gotten 10 years ago. You could bet on it.

  • Mess' Was The Man said...

    Agree with your point: "this is the softest team in the league" and they're lucky this is the "new NHL" or they would be bounced off the ice in the old league. They need Hollweg back on the ice ASAP to balance the Czech's. Sather better not screw this potentially good young team up...