I am back from my one-day hiatus thanks to a now healthy son, who jumped into my bed this morning and demanded to see pictures of Zambonis on my computer. It’s a strange fascination for grown men, maybe. But for a boy not yet 2, the Zamboni ranks right up there as one of the wonders of the world.
Or put it another way: if I ever brought Charlie to the rink to see the Rangers practice, I’m not sure he’d even notice the players.
On, then, to some updates:
Note that Colton Orr and Adam Hall would again be the scratches. At defense, Darius Kasparaitis looks to be the odd man out again, but Tom Renney will skate all seven D during warm-ups and decide then.
As for Jason Krog moving between Matt Cullen and Brendan Shanahan, maybe that’s not the answer to getting Shanahan out of his scoring slump. But Krog certainly has more playmaking ability than Betts, who readily admitted his shortcomings in that department the other night.
“He loves it,” Renney said. “The guy just loves playing hockey.”
Asked whether Shanahan is now showing the effects of assuming too much ice time in the early going, Renney said it could be a factor.
“How can you not look at that?” the coach said. “But at the same time, we talk frequently, and he feels great. Maybe he’s telling me what I want to hear. But to me he’s a pretty straight up guy, and I said to him right at the beginning of the year, ‘Shanny, you’ve got to let me know when you’ve got to have a breather, whether it’s game off or a practice off, because I’m not going to guess my way through that.”
“Having said that, even as his production has dipped, he’s still such an influence in our lineup. He’s great to have out there.”
Everyone, that is, except for Jagr.
“I don’t know,” he said. “You’re asking me something I can’t answer. And every team has to deal with the same thing.”
Of course, Jagr also joked that as opposed to last year, when the Olympic Break came at the most inopportune time for the Rangers, this year’s team doesn’t have to worry about halting any momentum.
“We’re not going to get any worse,” he said, laughing.
OK, more to discuss later…