Saturday, November 29, 2008

Playing Not To Lose

For the second game in a row we saw the coach clueless, "Not playing defense is not an option," doctrine in full bloom. Boring, passive, the defense was offensive, the offense was defensive. For the second game in a row we couldn't put away one of the bottom feeders in the league. For the second game in a row we allowed a bottom feeder to score the tying goal in the waning minutes/seconds. For the second game in a row we went into a shootout against one of the worst teams in the NHL.

"Again we were able to find ways to win," said coach clueless. Again? Found ways to win? Yeah, we found ways to win. It's called Henrik Lundqvist. Lundqvist leads the NHL with 5 shootout wins, stopping 17 of 19 shots. This one was tough. It was a 2-1 win in the shootout. After Olesz gave the Panthers a 1-0 lead it was Naslund to tie and the Z Man to win. The Z Man has 4 shootout goals, tops in the NHL. So this is what the Rangers are about. Play for the shootout, but what happens in the playoffs? Captain Drury said, "We better learn to finish these games, because the last time I checked there were no shootouts in the playoffs." Does clueless know that?

Markus Naslund chipped in with, "Giving up the tying goal twice in a game concerns me." Does it concern clueless? Naslund continued, "Good teams don't put themselves in a position to be scored on like that, they make the right plays. It's not a good sign to be scored on like we have been. We have to be better and smarter. We're still learning." You think clueless is still learning? You think he had it right when we had a four on three power play in OT and he had Kalinin and Rozsival on the points?

But all is well as we picked up the two points. Sam and Joe and the Maven are happy. The drive by media is happy. All the apologists are happy. Hey, even all the anonymouses are happy. Take that Pundit. You keep rapping this great team and their great coach clueless and they still win. Ask yourselves this question? How long can Henrik Lundqvist carry this team?

ICINGS: Didn't mean to upstage jb but I had to get a few things off my chest. You readers are lucky. You get two Pundits today for the same price.

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  • Section 335 said...

    I think Chris Drury put it best -- the Rangers better find a way to finish games, because you do not have shootouts in the playoffs.

  • tbassler said...

    I agree with you on your assessment on Renney. Maybe we're just to ignorant to recognize his hockey brilliance.

    If you don't believe me, just listen to him throw out a bunch of $10 words he got from hooked on phonics and still say absolutely NOTHING.

    If we posessed a brilliant hockey mind like he does, we'd get it. We'd understand why he keeps saying these things like fast starts, and puck support while his team continuously ignores him.

    Roszival and Redden should never be out there together. One quarter of the season over and he at least figured that out at even strength.

    Granted, he dsoesn't have the greatest d-corps to pick from, but I'd start putting Staal and Mara on the first power play line or anything besides continuing to throw out the poorest performing set of defensemen in the entire NHL!

  • jb said...

    The consensus is certainly that Roszival is a disaster on the powerplay. And his ice time needs to be cut back.

    Does anyone really think Redden will still be playing for the Rangers in 2013-2014 for $6.5M per year? His contract is as long as Gomez's, what was Slats thinking? Who else was bidding that much for Wade.

    Just think how good Lundqvist's stats would be if his defense was better. He's amazing. The shootouts do show how superior he his.

    Renney as a communicator must subscribe to the Bill Belichick school of coach speak: say as little of substance as possible. But he's no Bill Belichick.