Wednesday, January 10, 2007

We Can't Beat Them

The crowd seemed to chant it every five minutes. "Potvin Sucks." Occasionally it was "DP sucks", referring to the Islander goalie. In reality it was the Rangers and Tom Renney who sucked. Here was a chance to put a skidding team nine points behind us and we couldn't do it. Tom Renney couldn't get his team up and ready to crush and bury an inferior team. He just couldn't do it. He doesn't know how to get a team up and ready for a big game.

Both teams made u-turns tonight. The Rangers winning streak was stopped at four games and the Islanders losing streak ended at six games. The Islanders outhustled, outclawed, outplayed and outscored an indifferent Ranger team. All the warts came out tonight. The defense was a sieve. The offense didn't or couldn't put sustained pressure on DiPietro and Henrik Lundqvist was a mere mortal tonight, giving up some questionable goals, aided and abetted by his sloppy defense.

The second line center Matt Cullen played like a third line center again, which is what he really is. Petr Prucha shanked a shot with a wide open net similar to the one Kozlov scored on for the Islanders. Twenty seven seconds later Mike Sillinger put in his second of the game, rebounding his own shot and the game was over.

Jaromir Jagr scored a goal, his 17th, and picked up two assists on Straka's 23rd and Shanahan's 24th. The hip and shoulder did not seem to bother him as he skated freely and looked to be his own self. I've said it before and I will say it again, again and again. The Rangers will only go as far as Jagr and Lundqvist take them. Tonight, the Prince, Henrik Lundqvist, did not live up to his part of the bargain. He seems to play erratically against the Islanders.

Glen Sather better be working the phones now to shore up a soft and pourous defense and to get a tough number two center before it is too late. He may have his job for life, courtesy of James Dolan, but it won't do any good if the fans stop coming. Because he is set for life it doesn't mean that Renney is also set for life. I don't believe that Renney can take this team deep into the playoffs. In fact, he may not be able to get them into the playoffs.

ICINGS:

January 10, 2007
Daily News
Isle Be Darned
NY Post
No Isle-usion
Newsday
Isles, Renney Rip Blueshirts
Getting Total Team Effort
Journal News
Islanders Bring Out Worst In Rangers



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