Saturday, January 06, 2007

Rangers Shine In House Of Horrors

The moon may have come out this afternoon in Montreal. How else to explain the Rangers improbable win over Les Habs in the House of Horrors. In the prior twelve games the Canadiens held a 9-2-1 advantage and since the Rangers inception the Canadiens hold a 310-179-94-1 advantage. Improbable? The Rangers completely outplayed Montreal five on five but gave up three power play goals in five attempts to the number two power play unit in the NHL. Improbable? The Rangers were two for seven on the PP against the number one PK team in the league. Improbable? Matt Cullen, one of my favorite whipping boys, scored two goals. Improbable? Hollweg, Hossa, Jason Ward, Hall and Betts all logged over ten minutes of ice time each. Hossa was a dynamo and should have been one of the stars of the game.

Improbable? Jaromir Jagr got less than ten minutes of ice time with one shot on goal before leaving with was described as a minor groin injury. Toward the final minutes of the game Renney rotated the third and fourth lines and they were energetic right up to the final buzzer. Improbable? The Rangers swamped Montreal on face offs winning 34 of 50 faceoffs for a whopping 68% face off wins. Blair Betts was outstanding, winning 12 of 14 faceoffs. No wonder the Rangers just resigned him for two more years.

While Straka got another goal (22) and an assist and Nylander racked up two assists and voted number two star it was the role players who dominated this game. Thomas Pock played another outstanding game. There is no way this guy should not be in the regular lineup every night. The third and fourth lines constantly harassed Montreal with steady solid forechecking, hard checks and constant pressure on the puck all game. To Renney's credit he recognized this and kept the pressure on with the two lines. Rozsival scored the other goal, the Rangers third , to give a short lived 3-2 lead.

Next stop, the Islanders at the Garden. Rangers play the same kind of five on five and stay out of the penalty box and the streak should go to five matching the previous streak. The Rangers escaped The House Of Horrors with an exciting win.


January 8, 2007
NY Post - Time To Save Jagr

January 7, 2007
Daily News - Now Matt's More Like It
NY Post - Painful Victory
Newsday - Rare Power Surge By Cullen

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