I’ll make it short today if only because I’m working on about three hours sleep. Granted, that probably merits another blog entry in itself, but for now, a few quick hits:
In my haste to make it to practice on time today I grabbed the first ballcap within reach, and it happened to be my blue USA Hockey hat (version 2.0, for “reasons explained here”:http://golf.lohudblogs.com/2006/08/24/farewell-loyal-blue-hat-wherever-you-are/). Maybe this doesn’t sound like a big deal, but bear in mind that the Rangers are a diverse bunch, comprised of a host of Russians, Czechs, Swedes, and of course Canadians. And this is to say nothing of Tom Renney, who has coached Team Canada in multiple international competitions, including to a silver medal in the 1994 Winter Olympics. Feeling somewhat apologetic, I asked Renney if he was offended by my hat. “No,” the coach said. “But I might bring you a Canada hat just to even things out.” Fair enough.
Speaking of Renney, the coach likes to assess imaginary $50 fines to reporters whose cell phones go off during press conferences (there is one, and he knows who he is, who is a multiple-time offender). During our session today in the Rangers’ luxurious lounge at the MSG Training Center, Renney was mid-sentence when a loud blender went off for several seconds. The coach looked around to see who was causing the disruption, and it turned out to be Jaromir Jagr, better known as “the most prolific European-born goal scorer in NHL history”:http://www.thejournalnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20061122/SPORTS01/611220386/1034/SPORTS. We asked Renney if Jagr was going to be fined. “Who is it?” the coach asked mockingly while turning around. “Oh, no fine…”
Strange trend developing in the Rangers locker room after wins: after the traditional playing of “Sweet Caroline,” the next song up is Carly Simon’s “You’re So Vain” (which, for those of you who don’t know, is a somewhat “unflattering song Simon wrote about Mick Jagger”:http://www.completealbumlyrics.com/lyric/10080/Carly+Simon+-+You’re+So+Vein.html, but which still features Jagger on background vocals, UPDATE: I have since been corrected multiple times by those who say the song is about Warren Beatty. In a million years I never imagined this discussion would be taking place on a Rangers blog). Always in search of a deeper meaning, I wondered if it’s a less-than-subtle way to remind players to keep an even head after wins. But when I asked Henrik Lundqvist what the significance of the song is, the goalie was stumped. “I just think it’s the next song on the iPod,” he said.
Of course there’s that, too.
OK folks, that’s all for now. I hope to post tomorrow, but just in case, a happy and healthy Thanksgiving to all….