Saturday, December 02, 2006

Four And Out

The Rangers lost to the Sabres for the fourth time this year. This time in a shootout, the first shootout loss for the Rangers. And that was the bad news. The good news is that, barring a playoff meeting, the Rangers will not play the Sabres again this year. Lets face it we can't beat these guys. Last night we should have beat them in regulation. The combination of Tyutin and Weekes, and add in Ward also, was too much for the Rangers to overcome. There was also a power failure in the HSBC Arena. Too bad it didn't go totally dark then maybe we could have slipped a few more shots past Ryan Miller.

The Sabres only got nineteen shots on goal and three found their way into the net. The first Sabre goal, by Jochen Hecht, found its way into the net when Weekes and Straka got tangled up after a weak clearout by Tyutin. Yes Aaron Ward was on the ice also. The second goal came on Brian Campbell's backhander that Weekes was down when he should have stayed up. Yes, Tyutin and Ward were on the ice. The third goal was by Ranger nemisis, Chris Drury, who caught Tyutin going the wrong way. Yes, Aaron Ward was on the ice. These follies wasted a good effort by the rest of the team. The Rangers out shot the Sabres 39-19, 28-8 after the first period.

Once again, as in the two previous OT losses, the Rangers could not put a team away. After Nylander's third period goal giving them the lead they couldn't break Miller again and were partucularly futile in the OT when during a four on three they unleashed six shots on Miller to no avail. Then came the OT, when Briere scored it was all over. Nylander, Shanahan and Prucha all came up empty. Straka, their hottest goal scorer, now has 15, was injured and out during the OT and shootout.

For some reason Jagr did not participate in the shootout. Why? I don't know. Hey, that's our third baseman (old Abbott & Costello routine). Jagr, while not getting a goal got two assists and was instrumental on the first goal, blocking Miller' view in front of the net. He took seven shots, including three in OT, but no cigar.

So another OT, shootout loss, due to spotty goaltending and loose play by the defense. Remember Lundqvist gave up some questionable goals in the two previous losses. You don't think its the defense, do you? You don't think Kasparaitis would be an improvement, do you? You don't think a young player like Thomas Pock would be an improvement, do you? You don't really think Brian Leetch is too old to play for this team, do you?

Jaromir Jagr recently commented that the Rangers don't seem to have the ability to put teams away. He said, "Maybe we are not a good team". Maybe the Captain is right.

ICINGS: Ryan Callahan made his debut. In 3:40 of ice time, six shifts, he managed a shot on goal and a hit. Maybe move him up to the second line and give him some meaningful ice time.

Is Brian Leetch going to the Tampa Bay Lightning?

Fauxrumors had this rumor - Leetch Moving South?

Daily News
Blueshirts Lose But Take Heart
NY Post
Sabre Rattled
Rangers Swept Away

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