Things are bleak. But you already knew that.

61

Some quick updates from another moribund Rangers’ dressing room:

  • Jaromir Jagr was not on the ice for the final minute after tweaking his hip flexor again late tonight. The right wing said he hoped to play tonight against the Devils. But it’s worth noting that he was limping quite visibly when leaving the Garden.
  • Turns out Brendan Shanahan had been consulted by Glen Sather and Co. before the team acquired Sean Avery, a former teammate of Shanahan’s from Detroit.

    “He’s a difference maker in that you know he’s on the ice at all times,â€? said Shanahan. “I think New York fans are going to love his passion. I think he’s going to be a thorn in the side of the teams we play against…The big thing about Sean is he’s noticeable in every game.â€?

    “A couple of days ago they asked what I thought of him. As a player, you don’t want to know, but you get asked about guys at different parts of the season. Sometimes it’s a trade. Sometimes it’s just dipping a toe in the water.”

    Meanwhile, word from the L.A. side is the Rangers pursued Avery fairly aggressively. Maybe so, but at least one member of the Rangers isn’t ready to declare Avery the answer to the team’s problems.

    “Hopefully that’s going to help us,” Jagr said. “But we need more than Sean Avery right now.”

  • What, exactly, do the Rangers need then? How about a collective therapy session? I’m not about to tell you this team was outplaying the Wings, because it was apparent toward the end of the second period that the ice was tilting anyway. Still, it takes a team paralyzed by self-doubt to botch things the way these guys did toward the end.

    “When you’re a confident team, you know you’re going to win games no matter what. But when you’re in a tough time like we are, you question things, you second guess things, and that’s when the bad bounces get the best of you,� center Matt Cullen said. “When you’re playing confident and playing well, you don’t even think about it. You just play. I thought we did a good job of that the first two periods.�

  • Also, and this is perfect 20/20 hindsight, so take it was a grain of salt: Watching Henrik Lundqvist in the morning skate today, it was obvious he wasn’t sharp (hence the shot to the head from Fedor Tyutin). At the time, watching him let in goal after goal, I figured he was just taking it easy before tonight. But obviously something was missing, and it came back to bite the Rangers late.

    More later..

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    61 Comments

    1. i cannot believe we picked up that idiot avery. i seriously believe the dolans are trying to lessen the value of this franchise so they can buy back the stock not held by them. they and the management of this team are a disgrace. renney needs to move on. he just cannot change the culture of this team, particularly with jags the integral part. he is a shell of what he was. he turns the puck over constantly during every game and suffers no consequences. all he does is give scoring chance after scoring chance to every team we play. kind of reminds me of the latter messier years where he stunk up the ice and was allowed to without being benched. it’s kind of amazing to have jags on the team and still having the numbers he has, but the numbers don’t show how much of a liability he is on the ice. he needs to either rest for a long time (sheesh, it’s not like he’s scoring and keeping us in games-maybe others step up in his absence) or unloaded for some young talent and picks, although anyone scouting the rangers could see how his passing has been so detrimental to this team all year so what value does he really have? this team is a mess. the other ward should have been traded and/or benched until he gets his head out of his butt. just one last comment: with the team losing all these close games, i guess it must make management think we should be a buyer because we’re close to being a good team. they could not be more wrong. there is talent there to keep these games close (i really thought hasek would end up on the bench again as we have always played well against him, but the wings had a case of ranger-itis early:goalie mishandling the puck and many ill-timed and bad passes in center ice that we took advantage of, something the rangers are always guilty of) but the horrendous officiating just continues to ignore penalties perpetrated on ranger players and calls every tiny infraction committed by us, which just on a nightly basis takes whatever momentum this team can muster and kills it, and the garden tonite just booed and booed this team that could not hold another two goal lead after two periods. msg is a very depressing place to be this season.

    2. Alan, I agree with a lot of what you’re saying, especially about Jagr sucking. But the officiating isn’t even close to this team’s problems; it’s just another pathetic excuse for a pathetic squad.

    3. I still cannot believe how early this whole thing looks to be over. Team barely stayed in it up to the All Star break. Maybe they;ll win their next 10. But when has that ever happened in the last 10 years?

    4. if they win their next 10 (20 points) and every team above them goes 6-4. we would BARELY be in the playoffs.

      think on that for a while fellas.

      SEASONS OVER.

    5. Infernal Rangers on

      Rangers would probably have to go 20-9 the rest of the way to make the playoffs. It’s over.

    6. I can’t believe this team was up 3-1 and lost 4-3. I hate the damn defense this team displays. They always manage to give up just one more than they need to. They’ll lose 2-1, 5-4, 12-11. It’s frustrating.

    7. The Avery deal makes sense in a broader context of just this season. That having been said we still have a few weeks to “evaluate” him, and if he doesn’t fit he can always go by the trade deadline.

    8. Got a phone call from Jagr, says he’s really interested in the Golf tourney I set up for the Rangers starting April 2nd.

      Says he needs some fun and relaxation before going home and says he can’t wait for this season to be over. Asked me if Shanahan is coming and if so, he doesn’t want to play.

    9. isn’t it interesting that Jagr gets a tweak just before he has to face the Pandolfo shadow.

    10. Sam until Sather is gone & takes Malonney & Renney with him, the NYR are doomed to .500 hockey if they’re lucky.

    11. Trades are to little to late,what was management waiting for? Weeks ago this team was in trouble and the Rangers did Nothing.No meaningfull call ups from hartford, No benching players that deserved to be benched, no trades nothing but useless mumbo jumbo from that idiot Renney. The only meaningful move they could make now is get rid of Renney(who has never been any good at the nhl level) and bring up more rookies for experience and trade some vets for some youth.

    12. Doodie Machetto on

      I like how everyone says Jagr sucks and isn’t scoring. that whole 10th in points thing sure is magic then, huh?

      What standards he is held to! if he’s not first, he sucks!

    13. who says we haven’t made progress?

      we used to bring in guys like Tibbetts, bringing in Avery is clearly an improvement.

      we are 11th and sinking, so it’s time to buy not sell? welcome to Rangerland.

      we have a coach who doesn’t know how to use his tough guys so we will get him another one?

      we are going to blame the coach for a lost season? we have done that now four times in six seasons under the same GM – too bad we have the only owner in the NHL braindead enough not to realize what the problem is.

    14. ThisYearsModel on

      Sam

      Spent some time in Calgary in December. One of the interesting experiences was the half day we spent with the Calgary Flames. The discipline of that organization is amazing. We had a lecture from one of the coaches, and he said some very interesting things about the commitment level that is demanded by his boss, one Darryl Sutter. Bottom line, it sounds like this guy is a real SOB to work for. They carry extra players for the ability to bench players that are not putting in the effort expected, or those that do not embrace the system, or those that make too many mistakes. In the microscope that is a major city and Canada, anything less than maximum effort is unacceptable. It is hard to say that the culture around the Rangers is lax unless you are an insider, but it sure looks like it from the outside. Seems to be nothing close to the demanding atmosphere in Calgary. What do you think of the Ranger culture? You are closer to it than any of us.

    15. Sam riddle me this, why were you able to see that Lundie was off today for tonight & the coach Mr Renney didn’t? And what do you think Renney’s answer would be on what he was seeing & why he played him? I’ll assume Weekes has to play the devils.

    16. Infernal Rangers on

      a contract extension for that useless Betts makes me ill. he got stripped on the winning goal.

      an org. that is not deep at C trades away a good one.

      Cliche, who played for Canada’s gold medal-winning entry at the World Junior Hockey Tournament was a second-round pick of the Rangers in 2005. Playing for Lewiston of the QMJHL, he has 36 points in 35 games this season.

      ”Some teams were actively pursuing Sean, the New York Rangers were very aggressive,” Lombardi said. ”From our standpoint, the key is the young player, Cliche, who has impressed us.”

    17. this is really just an interlude in what is in the longer perspective a slow-motion rebuild.

      the rebuild will take somewhere between 10-20 years depending on how many more of these interludes we have.

    18. thats it Jagoff.. You are a clown. Jagr is faking an injury so he does not have to play against Pandolfo. You should not watch any games because you a a friggin moron..

      Say he isn’t scoring but a 34 yr old stud, 6 ft 3 245 is scared of Jay Pandolfo is stupid even for these poster and that is saying alot.

    19. This management is the dumbest in the league, it takes them forever to figure out that somebody needs to be traded or a coach has to be fired.

      BTW, I love Hollweg, but 0 points in 52 games? that is scary.

      And yeah getting Avery does renew my interest a bit, so I will likely watch the next game.

    20. I didn’t say he wasn’t going to play, you mgmt. tool, and Sather-lovin’ fool.

      but he did give himself an excuse for a poor performance tomorrow.

      we’re not yelling Stu, we’re booing you, the guy without a clue.

    21. Look at least the Rangers are free falling now ,instead of towards the end of the season to narrowly miss the playoffs,or as in last year and in Typical ranger fashion in the past tank in the 1st round.One cup in 67 years,one cup in 67 years!Kind of like chicago cubs and the red sox.The rangers were and always will be the joke of the NHL.Leetch and richter win the cup in 94 and become fat cats on b’way ,stars in NY.No playoffs ,no drive for a second cup,they should ‘ve been tossed out and traded for quality instead of getting nothing for #35 and junk for leetch,the rangers always pick up aging stars Messier(who actually came through) jagr,shanny,gretzky,and others who come only for the cash.This would never happen in NJ.The Islanders will win the cup again before the rangers.Jagr cant score anymore because he’s beat up ,he skates with 2 weak players with no fight in them.Trade nylander and straka get something (draft choices)anything for those two ,they can’t protect Jagr.State of the art traing facility and cash only attract the aging stars ,theres no motivation to win.get rid of sather,clean the house.Or watch the same game year in year out with an occasional playoff run.

    22. hey teetime– dont take out your frustrations on this team on Richter and Leetch…what did they ever do wrong? They always played their heart out for the rangers!!

    23. Anyone want to bet Avery’s first words when he walks in the NYR lockers?

      Avery: “Guess they don’t need you anymore!”

      Hollweg: “Guess not!”

    24. This team is missing the one thing money can’t buy, and thats heart. I was there last night. The place was myabe at most 3/4 full (thats being optomisitic) and quiet for most of the game. This team is just like the other Sather teams, big names, looks good on paper, and lacks heart. That was one of the most gutless performances I can remember seeing in person. To be up 3-1 on an excellent Detroit team (who it seemed as if we caught on an off night) and then blow it on 2 absolute sh#t goals and a whiff by Betts was terrible.

      If the trade was made 2-3 weeks ago when we really needed it then I would say why the hell not. However at this point is this trade going to matter? I mean Avery is 26, but Cliche is 19. The season was lost already, I don’t see why we needed to go out and pretend we are buyers. Way to rebuild Glen Savior.

      I consider myself an optomist with the Rangers, however there is no recovering from this. The season is over, there is no heart, no sustained offensive attack, and no toughness. How many times was Detroit able to skate right in and head right to the net? Detroit was toying with the Rangers the end of the 2nd and the whole 3rd period.

      It is obvious Jagr is hurt, no doubt about it, from the beginning of the season. I don’t get why they didnt hold him out for a month and have him rehab and build strength. He is a shell of what he was last year. How many times do you see him holding off a defender while skating with the puck?

      Fact of the matter is we will never win with Renney, Maloney, Sather and Dolan. And since our wonderful owner pretty much said Savior can stay as long as he wants means we will not win for quite some time.

      To Sather: Glen, it’s 2007 not 1985 you have not adapted to the new NHL. Do us a favor and leave. You have no clue what you are doing anymore. The fans know more about this league than you do. Leave with the shred of respect anyone outside of New York has for you.

      To Dolan: Leave. It’s that simple. You have taken 2 of the premiere franchises in NBA and NHL history and turned them into complete trash. The knicks don’t sell out and after last night the Rangers won’t either. Do us a favor and sell to someone, anyone.

      To Renney: Get a clue. Seriously you are not an NHL coach. Jagr might as well coach this team with Sather. Anyone else see Lundqvist last night trying to go to the bench with about 1:30 left when we had the puck in the corner of Detroit’s zone? Renney finally decided to call him to the bench 25-30 seconds later. Way to be decisive Tom.

      Ok I am done, sorry for the long post, needed to get a few things out there.

      Sam keep up the good work…

    25. Jagoff : Stop blaming Jagr for everything thaty is wrong with this team! The whole team SUCKS!!! I love Holloweg but what did he do in the game yesterday??? He threw 1 hit – THAT’S ALL!!! We don’t have a forth line, you guys are blaming Renney for not rolling 4 lines – I agree, but how can he roll 4 lines if the 4th line does not exist?? I did not even notice them last night! Ortmeyer and Hossa had a great game. Shanny was desent. But there is no unity to this team – they can not pressure the opposing team for 60 minutes. Also there is glaring inability of our whole 1st line to play North/South style. How many times yesterday they gave up the puck in Detroit’s zone because of overpassing it??? I disgusted with this team. Also Shanny talks to much and I don’t see him leading this team by example. This team exatly like Boston a lot of talent but no unity and drive to succeed.

    26. Cliche – That’s going to come back and haunt us, I’d wager right now. Marek – I’ve been wondering for the past three years why this guy isn’t playing in NY. He’s all but tore up the European leagues as a sniper. Ward – expendable, but not the most expendable on this team. I would have put Hall, Orr, Malik, Ozolinsh, Kaspar and Krog ahead of his name. And if we’re giving away one of our better forward prospects, one would think the Kings would at least be willing to take one more of the aforementioned dolts.

      As for Avery, he’s a wait-and-see type guy, IMO. He adds a good helping of the “North American” toughness so many people have been pining for on this board, so maybe that hackneyed argument will start to die now. As for his personal behavior, history is proof that these types of guys regress in NY. The names “Have another” Fleury and “Crackpipe” Stevens come to mind. And if Avery’s poison is spouting off in the media about how much he misses the days of Jim Crow laws, he’s going to find himself about as popular as Rex Grossman presently is in Chicago. Hey, at least he’s still in his 20s.

      I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: there will be NO fire sale this season; the Rangers are buyers, and a desperate bunch like that. Other teams know this now, seeing the Avery trade. So if anything, look forward to a few more prospects and younger guys getting moved before Feb. 27. for “instant contributors” that will probably take the form of Stumpel, Forsberg or Smolinski(the later I have the worst forboding feeling about). The days of “fire sale” died the minute the bargaining agreement was signed. Sather only traded those guys in 2004 because he knew there’d be no next season.

      As for the playoffs (playoffs?!? Don’t talk about playoffs… Are you kidding me, PLAYOFFS?!?) Right now, this team remains at least one scoring second-line center and a hot Jagr away from making the cut. That’s a stiff order right there for a team that overspends for a guy like Avery and for a captain that now apparently has a naging injury. Screw it, sign Leetch for comedy’s sake.

    27. Jagoff read these posts by guys like you and others hysterical fools.

      You have no clue, just the usual whine and complain. No realistic solutions. I guess if I do not post how much I hate sather I can’t be part of the whine and cheese club.

      Nothing like useless dribble. Lets trade everyon for draft picks and lose every game so we can get esposito, how does that sound???Again fools they are not that far off…

      Loser tool…

    28. The Avery trade doesn’t bother me, Cliche is good but they do have a bunch of good young forwards coming up. (Dubinsky, Artem (Russian kid), Pyatt, and Dupont) We need more energizer type guys that piss people off, like Kasper did last year. I hope though this is not a signal of more dumping of kids for vets. (avery is only 24) See what this does for the team, if the slide continues you sell. (I think it will because there is a lack of heart or something on this team)Waive Orr or Krog and bring up Callahan or Dawes or both and start to get your fans back into it(It was quite at the garden last night) Maybe jagr line the same, shanny, avery (He has played center), Callahan, cop line, and hossa, betts, hollwig?

    29. I have to say that A. Ward may be one of the worst defenseman i have ever seen. What a horrible game last night he had! He makes very poor decisions and he looks completely lost out there all the time. His season has been dismal at best. He would be on the top of my list to go next!!

    30. Hey Alan,
      Amen, it’s about time ranger fans wake up. This franchise wil never be good as long as dolan is the owner. Dolan has no clue about running a sports franchise. Sather is another idiot. Sather got his reputation because of edmonton. That team was like the islanders, which was an expantion team and edmonton got the cream of the crop draft picks. The ranger and the knicks will be the laughing stock of there leagues.

    31. About the trade, if it was just Ward for Avery, no loss. We’ve traded a soft player for a possible agitator. The same things said about Avery were said about Matthew Barnaby before he came to the Rangers and he worked out OK. Worst case, he doesn’t work out so we lost Jason Ward, not a biggie.

      But what does make this a terrible deal is we gave up two promising prospects for a terrible one which Sather should be shot for including them in the deal.

      Like I’ve said previously, last season’s fluke success was based on Sather being confused with the new rules and it took him a season to get back into the Sather screw up mode.

    32. Doodie Machetto on

      Marek isn’t promising. He’s 27 and has ridiculous salary demands. I don’t think he’ll ever leave Europe.

      Cliche has already had a concussion at 19. I’m not crazy about the risk of a glass skull player.

    33. There still is room for Hollweg with Avery here. Truth is, we could use a defenseman similar in attitude to these two.

      The other thing is, aren’t you guys ever happy? Malikenstein is out, and right away you are all over Aaron Ward. Do you just need a scapegoat to blame for the loss? The glass is always half empty, never half full with most of your posts. This is a team game, won by the team, not individual players making a great play or mistake.

    34. “This is a team game, won by the team, not individual players making a great play or mistake.” PW

      Except when things go wrong, then “It’s all Malikensteins fault !”

    35. Dolan is a huge part of the problem.

      He’s daddy’s little spoiled boy who has never wiped his own ass.

      He has only hired over-payed has beens as owner and has no business sense. Yet us Rangers fans are the suckers in his eyes.

    36. I keep reading here and other places that Jagr is the problem, that he has quit on the team. He should have sat a few weeks at the begining of the season to strengthen his shoulder. But this is the same man who came back in game 3 with his shoulder torn out and tried to play. As for Avery, idk. I dont understand why Callahan is not here, especially since Orr is not playing and Hall rarely plays.

    37. Ugh…MEessier buy the Rangers? I think not. Frankly, my stomach did several revolutions when I read that piece about him and Slats chumming up with each other. Few remember the major part of the PROBLEM Mess was with this team during his last years here. My alliagence to Mess ended the day he signed a contract in Vancouver and abandoned this team to the disaster that was the late 90s. Had he stayed, there would’ve been a second cup to go next to 93-94. Instead, we got retread Mark back three seasons too late, who served a stopper that plugged up the farm team for four years. No, I’d just asoon cut the losses with Mess at sitting through tear-jerking retirement ceremonies.

    38. Simple thought about Messier’s getting Rangers GM job puts a lot of optimism in these dark days…
      Captain – we’re waiting for you!!!

    39. Longtimerangerfan on

      Terry
      February 6th, 2007 at 11:50 am
      wow… Sam, check this out…

      http://torontosun.com/Sports/Hockey/2007/02/06/3540092-sun.html

      Messier sure couldn’t do any worse than Blather…I hope. I’ve learned through the years, being a Ranger fan, that one should be careful what one wishes for. Would that also be the end to Baloney? I just don’t get it, Don Maloney was one of the best “muckers” in the corner the Ranger’s ever had, that I’ve seen anyway, but the team that he helps build are lacking intestinal fortitude. “Slats” Sather too was a tough SOB when he played here.

    40. Doodie Machetto on

      Well, let’s see how they use Avery first. If they put him in a 4th line agitator role, it’s going to be pretty difficult to find room for Callahan, unless they scratch Hossa, which I’m pretty sure they won’t do. The other scenario that could make room for him would be to remove Krog, and then split up the top line and Put Callahan as the RW on the second line. Cullen could drop to third.

      I don’t think Callahan is going anywhere, to be honest.

      Since they really are a longshot to make the playoffs at this point, there’s no use in bantering about which combos would be best or which kids should be in the lineup. the time for all of that has passed. so I’ll see you guys infrequently and next season.

      Sam, what happens to this blog during the offseason?

    41. Longtimerangerfan on

      Lennynyr

      I didn’t get my invite to play golf with you and Jagr…is it something like the “check is in the mail”? Sorry, couldn’t resist.

    42. Longtimerangerfan on

      Lennynyr

      BTW, it’s still going to awfully cold in Glens Falls on April 2nd. Crap, that’s my ex-wifes birthday too.

    43. I just hope Sather gives Messier the GM job . There is no other way out except to get Sather to take a back seat or retire, especially considering who the owners are.

    44. Hilarious line of the year from Sather:

      Could Messier move back to New York and begin an apprenticeship under the current Rangers GM?

      “He probably could,” Sather said. “We’d have to sit down and figure out a lot of details.

      “The first thing would be to be sure it’s what he really wants to do because *it’s not something you can work at part time.*

      Hey Glen, are you inferring that you’ve been working full time to bring us the disaster we’ve been watching? Then you had better retire today…

    45. about Cliche–Ranger moronic management must have realised that they been drafting mostly similar players, we probably have 15 more “Cliche’s” in the system most of them are average or below average size, not much variety, not many power forwards or players that provide a lot of energy every shift. Our drafting is pretty pathetic.

    46. C’mon Alex..How could you doubt the sather,maloney and their scouts.Avery is the key to this years cup.they stole him from every team ..now where’smy rolling paper/

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