Sunday, March 16, 2008

Powerless — Scoreless — Clueless

There is an old adage that states, "The more things change, the more they stay the same." Coach clueless does not subscribe to the first part of that theory. After mouthing off on possible player changes and at the least some changes on the power play the clueless one did nothing. In fact, last night the Rangers did nothing, mustering all of twenty shots on goalie Mike Smith who had a great disdain for staying in his net. Smith was so confident the Rangers could not score he left the net wide open for the Rangers a couple of times. Both Fredrik Sjostrum and Jaromir Jagr were stopped in attempts to score. Sjostrum by a sprawling Smith and Jagr by a sprawling Picard. Right now, Jagr would have a problem scoring an empty netter from ten feet out.

In some ways this was probably the Rangers worst performance of the year even including the 6-0 shutout at the the hands of the Phoenix Coyotes. With the exception of Lundqvist no one else on the Rangers showed up. Girardi played a soft sloppy game. Tyutin with 3:53 of PP ice time was his usual ineffectiveness on the point. Straka was invisible. Shanahan seems to be running out of gas and Jagr had no game last night. Gomez and Drury were awful. Well, you get the point.The team was 0-3 on the PP last night and now the futility on the PP has reached 3-34. The promised changes really never came. Well, there was some. Staal's PP ice time was increased from 19 seconds to 34 seconds.

Lundqvist made 28 saves which were remarkable considering the play of the team in front of him. Even though Valiquette is a good backup there doesn't seem to be any plan to let Lundqvist rest at any time down the stretch. In fact, there doesn't seem to be any plan on anything on this team. Before the game, Sam and Joe were lauding coach clueless for not panicking and making any changes. Since when is making changes a cause of panic? How much longer do we have to wait before we see Hollweg and Prucha back in the lineup? Hollweg is a great forechecker who loves to hit and right now we need that badly. Prucha is a gifted player who is excellent on the power play, when given the time, and we need that badly. The trades at the deadline made the Rangers softer and that we didn't need. So now instead of looking up to see how close we are to the top we are looking back to see who is closing in. We have ten big games left, five at home and five on the road. We have three with the Devils, two at Newark. We have three with the Penguins, two at the Garden. We have two each with the Islanders and Flyers, evenly split at home and away. The Rangers need seven wins out of ten to guarantee the playoff spot. This will not happen if we remain powerless, scoreless and clueless. We have to fix the power play. Tyutin at the point is not the answer. Jagr and Straka are not the answer. Do you think coach clueless has an answer? Stay tuned.



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8 comments:

  • wes said...
     

    This team is bi-polar. They can look great at times and terrible a few days latter. That 13 game point streak might be the curse that dooms them. Renney might think that he has the formula figured out and he now is afraid to change that 'winning' formula.

  • mike said...
     

    wes-Its not a 'winning' formula when you crash in Florida against two inferior teams.

  • blueknight said...
     

    rp,

    lets wait and see when mara comes back...backman will sit! prucha im not so sure of..you claim that shanny and straka is out of gas? but didnt they just have 3 days off? look to me the rangers have always been beat up by teams that were younger and with both teams playing for different reasons (fla trying to make the playoffs and tampa for pride) the rangers just were due for a brain fart! i do agree that the coach will never get THIS team to the finals he is just too soft! the garden as a hole is a mess as long as dolan runs it!

    thoughts?

    james h.

    bronx ny

  • mike said...
     

    blueknight-Dolan is the main problem. The fish stinks from the head.
    Days off don't necessarily refresh the older players. They lose their edge and it never comes back.
    Clueless is soft. The team is soft and you are right. We shall not see the finals.

  • blow-me-down said...
     

    Sam and Joe two of the best, but they hit the wrong note for me when they identified any possible lineup changes with panicking. All teams need maintenance and some tweaks, good god we're not talking about pulling a tired and innefective captain off the powerplay, or anything like that goshdarn! All of his comtemplation and analysis does not lead to him wanting to fix how sucky this team plays. Huh? Go watch a junior B game Tom and see how hockey is played.Sad.
    I place my faith in guys like Callaghan, Dubinsky and Avery (with some type of governor installed in his brain to prevent things like his idiotic penalty last night) to light the spark again, they can't be having any fun out there playing like wimps. Everyone not wearing goalpads can definitely do with thirty lashes.

  • mike said...
     

    blow-me-down-We should get rid of all the Czech mates and their Swedish cousins with the exception of Prucha and Lundqvist.

    Clueless should be hung by the rafters between Billy Joel and Elton John.

  • Section 335 said...
     

    The Rangers were not as good as their streak and are not as bad as the last two games. They are simply a slightly above average team with talent beyond being just that. The difference between winning the Conference and not making the playoffs is as simple as fixing the powerplay. No, we do not need seven wins. Six will do. Maybe five. But, to what end if we cannot hit the back of the net on the power play.

  • mike said...
     

    section 335-I said seven working on the assumption that Buffalo would win out.

    To me just making the playoffs have never been the thing. Management uses making the playoffs as an excuse to raise ticket prices again.

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