Saturday, December 13, 2008

"Not Playing Defense Is Not An Option"

Did somebody miss a quote? Did someone notice it was a double negative? Or, did everything catch up to Moe (Redden), Larry (Rozsival) and Curly (Kalinin)? This dynamic trio of defenseless defenseman certainly weren't the whole problem last night but they were a big part of it. Plus, they draw a combined salary of $14.5 Mil/year and if there is anything that is going to stop Sundin from coming to New York it's the money that is pissed away on this unholy trio. The good news is that Sundin will be in the Garden tonight. The bad news: he will be sitting in a luxury box next to the Stealth. More bad news. He will be watching coach clueless work his magic against the Hurricanes.

There were three hockey games last night and the Devils won the important parts to win the game. They started out by threatening to blow the Rangers out of The Rock with a 5-1 lead. To the Rangers credit, led by Nikolai Zherdev, the Rangers stormed back and tied the game on Ryan Callahan's goal, only to fall behind on Elias's goal 11 seconds later and then it was all over. It was so bad that even Sam remarked about Lundqvist, "He is all alone out there".

The Devils are six points behind the Rangers and have six games in hand. In fact, all the teams in the Eastern Conference have games in hand on the Rangers. By the first of the year, this team, without any personnel improvement, or mindset improvement, will be fighting it out for seventh, eighth, ninth and tenth place in the conference.

Want another reason besides shoddy defense? The misnomer known as the power play. It was 0-10 last night and gave up two short handed goals, which brings that total to 10 for the season, tops in the NHL. The Rangers rank 23rd in the NHL with a PP% of 14.0. Think about this all you apologists and anonymouses who think we have a great coach. It is three years and counting and we still have a pitifully poor power play. This year it is at its all time worst, because of the short handed goals we are giving up. Three years and no idea of how to fix it. I call that clueless. What do you call it?

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  • blow-me-down said...

    Maybe the forwards did not backcheck to the utmost against the Devils, but that's not the real issue. Once they got rid of the system and decided to play, they were busy scoring goals and making a comeback. The real issue is a few soft and fluffy defensemen.

    Kalinin - the mediocrest of the mediocre

    Roszival - stuck in his comfort zone. It looks like he sees no problem at all with his play, which is unacceptable.

    Redden - just really does not give much of a damn.

    They choose to give ground, they choose to stand around, they choose to take the wrong man, they choose to avoid hitting. It should not be 'their' choice.

    I just think of what someone like Ron Wilson and Brian Burke would do with Roszival and Redden. I would pay to watch.

  • jb said...

    It's confounding how a guy who preaches defense all the time can suffer these weak defensive players. The cobbler's shoes are full of holes.