Friday, February 01, 2013

Lifeless In Manhattan

No it's not a sequel to "Sleepless In Seattle", it's just another sloppy Ranger performance that lulled a MSG crowd to sleep. My attraction to hockey has always been drawn by the skill of the players. Yes, your team may lose, and the Rangers usually did, but there was always the thrill of the goal, to the goal rush, the hard hitting clean check, the beautiful goal, the nifty save and the pinpoint passing.

There was none of that last night. The only passing may have been gas from the blowhard on the bench. There was nothing last night that even gave a semblance that this was a hockey team. You knew the game was bad when Sam and Joe continually referenced "no flow," code words for, this game is sloppy, there is no life, this game stinks and so do the Rangers.

Much of the talk in the morning press is to lament the loss of Ryan Callahan. Well, I like Callahan and he is a great, feisty, team leader and player. But if the loss of Callahan caused last nights debacle then the Rangers are truly not a hockey team and are in worst shape than most of us think. Two weeks out will seem like an eternity and the team will probably never recover.

No it's more than the loss of Callahan. When offensive players like Gaborik, Richards and Nash suddenly become impotent, suddenly lose their offensive skills, suddenly miss wide open shots it's more than that. It's a mentality, a mind set that drains the offense at the expense of the so called defense. Defense, first last and always. And when that fails it's our super human goalie, Henrik Lundqvist.

But so far our super human goalie has been just human and for some reason, unless they change the rules, you don't win a hockey game unless you score goals and our mindset is defense, stop goals, and then try to score a goal. But what the hell do I know?

But what I do know is that; we have no depth, no bench; we have no offensive schemes; we can't score on the power play; Henrik Lundqvist is human; the coach is over rated. What I also know is that the GM and the coach are not on the same wavelength. The GM keeps signing high priced, high powered offensive players and the coach insists that they play defense, muck it up in the corners and block shots. Wayne Gretzky would never had made this team.


Remembering the Tomahawk Chop

Chief White Owl - master of the Tomahawk ChopThere was a professional wrestler named Chief White Owl, who used to have as a signature finishing move the tomahawk chop. He tomahawked adversaries for 32 years from the 1950s into the 1980's. Here is a Youtube of a bout the Chief had in 1966 versus Steve "Mr. America" Stanlee. Sadly, George Dahmer, known to a generation of pro-wrestling fans as the tomahawk-chopping chief was killed by a Florida nursing home in 2008.

However, Chief White Owl's great legacy the "Tomahawk Chop" lives on with Chief Evgeni Malkin.

Evgeni Malkin, Pittsburgh Penguins tomahawks Marc Staal, NY Rangers
CBS Sports:
Video: Evgeni Malkin's stick meets Marc Staal's head --
Staal, who sat out 36 games last season with a concussion, was described as incredulous after the game.

While addressing the media after New York's 3-0 loss to the Pens, Staal said, “He tomahawked me right on top of the helmet. He dazed me. I don't know how that's not called. I understand we're battling in front of the net, but he's hitting down like he's chopping wood across my head."
Maybe Malkin was just testing the flex on his stick.

With no news coming out of the department of player safety in regard to this incident as of yet, it appears Malkin will escape any punishment. That is a bit of a surprise considering previous high-sticking incidents that have come under review.
Pens Blog:
NHL may look at Malkin's tomahawk on Staal

NY Rangers Blog:
Malkin Chops Staal in the Head
Back to Basics

A Marty Biron tweet, shows what he and Lundqvist will be spending a lot of time practicing: / NHL-Style Goalie Drills (pt 3) --

Marty Biron powerplay goalie drills

New York Rangers goaltender Martin Biron's goalie drill series focuses on preparing yourself for power play situations. Marty demonstrates a great three-sequence-drill you can practice that gets your legs moving with lateral post-to-post movement to effectively block back door shots and follow your rebounds.

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  • Number 7 said...

    Agreed. Dare I say what hasn't been said yet: without the determined forechecking of Prust, Dubinsky, Anisimov, and Fedotenko, regardless of whether they scored or not, we are forced to spend much more time in our own zone. The loss of those players with inadequate replacements and Nash not scoring is our main problem...
    It also doesn't help that teams know they can merely pressure the points on the power play and the Rangers will cough up the puck.

  • Jen9400 said...

    The truest and best line of this post:

    "Its a mentality, a mind set that drains the offense at the expense of the so called defense. Defense, first last and always. And when that fails its our super human goalie, Henrik Lundqvist." - Mike

    Thank you Pundit.

    This is what Jeanine1994 and I have been saying forever... and this is why I come here because like you I have been saying this and like you I always say but what do I know? Right? Its downright frustrating to see this so clearly, to know why these things happen year after year after year and to have a power hungry coach who pulls the strings of a GM who can't face reality. Same coach. Same results. Its really just that simple.

    Jeanine and I went to the game last night. Our first time in MSG since the lockout. What a horrible game. So horrible I couldn't even muster up the strength to be mad. On the car ride home from every game Jeanine and I usually discuss every aspect of the game. What we saw, what we noticed, what we liked or disliked, last night we got in the car and all I said was I don't have anything to say about this game that we haven't said 1,000 times before. She said yup, me either and our usual game conversation ended there. It just about got us out of the parking garage. The quote I pulled out of this post sums it all up beautifully. There's just nothing else to say except this:

    Pat Leonard from the Daily News wrote an article today about how coach disagreeable is piling on the ice time on our top players in order to get them into shape. A sort of in season training camp. He ended his article with this line:

    "In a couple of months, his method could have the Rangers stars playing at another level. Or, it could leave them gasping for air."

    We know from history that his method leaves the players gasping for air and cuts the legs out from under them in the playoffs. His method sabotages our chances every year. I said on here when the lockout ended that this was the Rangers golden opportunity to possibly win a Cup because the shortened season could mean that the guys wont be gassed come playoff time. Now we don't even have a chance for that. Oh how I hate that so-called man.

  • Jen9400 said...


    Don't forget to add Avery to that list of players. We were all supposed to accept the coaches miserable treatment of him and the way he ran him out of town because we had Prust and Rupp. Well, Prust signed in Montreal and Rupp is useless. Avery told the Record's Andrew Gross last season when he was shipped to CT that he only wanted to play in NY and he would play for the league minimum. We could use him. If only our coach wasn't so selfish and our GM had (guts) enough to stand up to him. (I'll be lady like ;) lol)

  • Andy said...

    Jen-I feel terrible you went to that game. That place was a mosalium once again. I, like the pundit, have found my self literally falling asleep during the games.

    It is not even hockey that the rangers are playing. It's
    a guessing game that they're playing and they aren't even making educated guesses. That's all i can say.
    They are a clueless hockey team with an even more clueless coach. Very, very sad.

    I encourage everyone who goes to games to start really hammering the rangers. Start the 'we want Avery' chant. Boo Rupp every time he touches the puck. Boo Torts any time they put his face on the big screen. Boo the goons when they get in useless fights. Boo the stars when they miss the empty net. Put pressure on these morons to spark a change. Bring your Avery banners even though the fascists will take them down. All it takes is one chant, one sign, one boo to get the morons' wheels spinning. Trust me, you get 5 to 8 thousand people doing these things then the real heat is on.

    Rupp touches the puck, 'We want Avery'! starts up. If there's anything in the world that would get that POS to start skating, it would be the Avery torment (we all know Rupp said he wouldn't play with Avery and we know his hatred of the man).

    Point being, if you're there, get your moneys worth. Let the whole organization know you demand change. Or else, as pundit recommended, boycott them. Let em play like crap in front of no one!

  • jeanine1994 said...

    Defense, defense, defense that is the only language our so called coach knows and it is now burned into the brains of our players. So much so that I am convinced that offense doesn't even enter their thought process anymore. They are afraid to make mistakes, if they do, that could lead to a turnover and then well, you know that's not the right way. And well, now have seat young man, let the all knowing master teach you about defense and responsibility. We don't make fancy plays here, we don't show off, save that for the Pittsburghs of the league. They can make the highlight reals but we sleep easy knowing we play the right way. We don't make pretty passes anymore, we don't even attempt to deke an opponent, we "play it straight" as the little Hitler likes to say. We play the right way, defense first, lay your body down in front of a 100mph puck, play through any injury because that is what real men do, right Torts? Don't soak in the tub to help heal your pains, don't talk about being sore or tired, that's for sissys, right coach? Please don't have an opinion or imagination, that's not the right way. It's the dictators way or you can go play for Columbus, Florida, or go rot the minors, hell, why don't you retire and get into the ad business. Who cares about you and you life, who cares about the career you've built because your doing it the wrong way so get off this coaches and get get out of his site. He wants these guys to all be the same players, but that's not what makes up a team. A team is made of individuals who all bring something different to the table and together form a beautiful melody. Each player brings a different element a different talent and when it's a successful blend crates a seamless cohesion. Everyone cannot be the same. Everyone cannot think defense first. We have way too much talent on this team now to not be successful. We should be scoring, we should be exciting. The crowd should be oooing and ahing to the plays. We should be on the edge of our seats waiting for an exciting play up ice but instead we skate in quicksand. Why? Because we have a coach who refuses to let go. Refuses to give these guys freedom to create on the ice. Refuses to let people be themselves and see what they are capable of , refuses to trust and refuses to let go of his control. Until we get rid of this coach, we will never know what we can truly become.

  • Jen9400 said...

    Andy- I knew I should have worn my Avery jersey last night.

  • jb said...

    I only watched some of the 2nd period. After the Pens scored their second goal I switched over to finish watching the Arsenal-Liverpool game (English Premier Soccer) on my other MSG channel. I don't usually care about soccer, but Arsenal came back from down 0-2, to tie the game. It was an exciting game, much better than the weak crap the Rangers run out there now. You know the Rangers are sad sacks when English soccer offers more action.

    This Rangers team does not inspire me or get me psyched to watch them play. They are plain painful to watch.

    I agree with No. 7, that the lost of Prust, Dubinsky, Anisimov, and Fedotenko has erased the strong forechecking game they had last year. Now they are left with the just the skills of Nash, Gaborik, and Richards to manufacture goals. Good luck with just that, and like Jen pointed out they will all be running on fumes if they do make it to the playoffs.

    I don't go to many games, so Andy's suggestion of letting the Rangers hear our displeasure is the best answer. For me, it's my attention that they are losing. The opposite of love is not hate, but apathy. I am starting to care less and less about this Torts-led Rangers team.

  • Jen9400 said...

    JB- Even though I agree that it is painful to watch, it breaks my heart knowing that a dedicated fan such as you doesn't even want to watch. Me, I won't entertain that notion because nothing can break me more than what happened to Messier. When the Rangers screwed him over it was my awakening. My introduction to hockey the business. I actually believed that the Rangers would never do anything like that especially to someone like Mark. Only other teams did that. Not MY beloved Rangers, after all how can someone as loyal as me get behind anything or anyone who would do a thing like that to the ONLY person who delivered. The rude awakening shattered my heart and broke my spirit. For the first time in my life I was angry at the Rangers and I didn't know how to handle that. I call the seasons following his departure my lost years because it was hard for me to watch and on many nights I didn't. I couldn't. When Mark came back and they put on that "burry the hatchet" BS show I was so happy he was back but I was still scarred for life. I am just now beginning to be able to tolerate seeing Neil Smith on TV and still to this day when I hear the name Dave Checketts I cringe. I don't care how much JD likes him, I will never forgive him. So even though I know the Torts years are less emotional and dramatic for you, I can relate to how you feel. Its hard to get behind something you don't believe in. I can watch it even though I don't believe in it because I know it won't be forever although it feels like forever. Nothing can compare to the way I felt during my lost years so there isn't anything they can do to get rid of me. All I can say is no matter how hard it is, always stick to what you believe in. No matter what it is. I just hate to see so many disheartened long time fans. It makes me sad.