Malik doesn’t get the boos, and neither do I

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Perhaps because I’ve already irritated Rangers fans once this week by calling them delusional, I “sought out Marek Malik yesterday”:http://www.thejournalnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070301/SPORTS01/703010420/1046/SPORTS to ask him about 1) the “A” Tom Renney awarded him with on Tuesday night; 2) his team-best plus-23 rating; and 3) the boos he’s been hearing on a nightly basis at the Garden.

Let’s start with that last one. For one thing, yes, Malik hears the boos, which is hardly surprising since there are pretzel salesmen on 8th Avenue who can hear the boos as well. And while the defenseman seemed to go to great lengths to tell me that it doesn’t bother him, the sheer volume of his answers argued otherwise.

“I understand when it’s a reaction when I’m playing bad. But when I’m playing good and I make a good pass or an assist and they’re still booing. For all the respect I have for the fans. I don’t care about that,� Malik said. “I care about my teammates and what they think of me. They know I’m trying to do the best I can for them. Management and coaching staff know the same thing. They appreciate my work. With the fans, even if my stats are good, what else can I do? I can put them on my side with my play on the ice.�

What’s interesting about Malik is that he readily admits he may have deserved the harsh treatment at the start of the year, particularly after a loss to Florida in October when he was only slightly more effective than a pylon.

But a lot has changed since then. It’s true, Malik stil has an uncanny knack for missteps of the very noticeable and very damning variety. But on whole, his play has been better as the season has gone on. And while the plus/minus rating is certainly in part a reflection of the amount of time he plays with Jaromir Jagr’s line, it’s also a reflection on him, a defenseman who is actually much better than he’s given credit for.

Let’s be clear that I was one of those people who thought Malik was miserable earlier this year. But the reality is Malik has certainly been more reliable than both the puzzling Karel Rachunek and the recently departed Aaron Ward. And the other reality is the Rangers have actually been a better team with Malik in the lineup than without.

And that leads me to the boos. Like Malik, I understand them when they’re for a bad penalty or when he’s beat on a play. But when it’s after a good play — or even the other night, when his name was announced for an assist — I’m not sure that’s anything more than fans targeting a guy because of his size.

I suppose it’s worth mentioning that Malik has two young sons, and that he hangs their art work prominently in his locker. I’m sure the defenseman or his wife at some point had to explain to their sons that professional hockey players subject themselves to boos when they make bad plays.

What may be harder to explain is why they get booed for the occasional good ones, too.

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85 Comments

  1. Agree with you, Sam. Malik has been good recently – a lot better than awful Rachunek.

  2. My opinion on Malik is that yes, he has gotten better as the season has progressed. He’s certainly better than Rachunek and Ward. But, I still don’t see him as nothing more than a #5-#6 defenseman. However, he’s being used as a #1-#2 defenseman since he’s always on the ice with the Jagr line. And putting aside the home run pass he made to Hossa on his breakaway goal against NJ last week, he’s been the most offensively inept defenseman I’ve seen in a long time. I know his job is defense first, but he has no shot whatsoever.

    The problem with the Rangers D is that they are lacking a true #1 and #2 defenseman. I don’t see Tyutin, Rozy, Malik, or anyone else as that person. Hopefully, Staal and Sanguinetti develop into that top pairing someday.

  3. repost…SAM is Pock the odd man out again, or is Rachunek finally going to get a well deserved seat? Malik can’t get one now that he wore the A, had an pr article about him, & a TV show. Is it a reality show? I saw the Pens in Fla last week, they will blow by Malik like he’s standing still. And that’s when he gets called for the bad penalties, hence the boos. Why doesn’t Renney understand that or is he in denial on it? He plays the puck not the man. With his size, he needs to be alot more physical. How does Mara look? For all the bad pr on Ward, he was physical & led the team in block shots. He seemed to take Tyutin under his wing. Losing a guy with 3 Cup rings will be hard to replace if they make the playoffs.

  4. New York fans are among the most sophisticated in the country. Why the boos?

    1. Because of slow, cumbersome skating; also perceived as a lack of effort. Players blur by him consistently.

    2. Because of ridiculous, lazy, and unneccesary penalties. What would his +/- look like if every goal that goes in while he sits in the box was counted? All he can do, as somone whizzes by him, is reach out with his stick and hook them.

    3. Because of his penchant of moving the puck in front of his own goalie. Lundqvst must go nutz when this guy is on the ice.

    4. His ability to assist the other team in goals. He and Rachunek are obviously fighting it out for the number 1 spot in this category.

    Can you imagine how good Lundqvst would be if he played for the Devils??

    Tom Renney gave him the “A” knowing full well how insulting this is to the fans who ultimately pay his salary.

    It is a disgrace.

  5. Its unfortunate that during a frustrating season a lot of fans seem to need SOMEONE to single out and take out their frustrations on.

    Malik simply gets it this year due to his play earlier in the season that drew the ire of the fans. I didn’t know he was booed for an assist, thats stupid.

    Say what you will, but I will never boo my team. I may curse at them, call them names, and throw my remote control, but when I’m at the games I’d rather be silent than boo my own team.

    If you just blew a big lead, then I can see where the boos come from. But to get booed for almost no reason, how embarassing must that be as the home team? I think its a disgrace. I know a ton of guys will say “I pay for the ticket, and I’ll boo if I want to”. Once I hear that phrase I never bother arguing back because I know those people are too dense to actually hear anything you are saying.

  6. Seamus:

    I agree. If any top goalie in the NHL played for the Devils (including Henrik), they’d have very similar stats to Brodeur. Not saying Brodeur isn’t a great goalie (as much as I loathe him), but lets face it. He’s definitely benefited from playing on that team in that system.

  7. I think that with Mara here now…Rachunek shoudl sit…not even for him play…but other than Tyutin, and Roszival, each defender has had a seat, Rachunek has played for a good stretch…and at this point Renney should be rotating his defenders in and out…maybe for 2 games at a time. Rachunek for two, than maybe Tyutin, than Malik, than Roszival, than Pock, than Mara, and back around again.of course it may depend on the team they are playing, you may want the better skaters in for instance for a couple of games, so you wouldnt sit Pock or Roszival, but Malik maybe. if this team wantsa to make the playoffs tehy need energy filled defenders at least…

  8. we booed poti out of NY, malik is next. poti didnt deserve this crap, its just that morons who dont know hockey thought he was the next leetch….IDIOTS!!!!! Malik doesnt deserve the booes but he isnt as good as poti so him leaving wont create a gap in our defense. Poti left and our PK and even strength GAA goes up, coincidence?? can we take bets on who gets it next year? moron fans who dont know hockey are annoying.

  9. It doesn’t look like Rachunek will sit since he was practicing with Mara on the 2nd PP unit. Malik has taken Poti purseboy’s fan attention. To be 6’6″ & not be physical is Willie Huber baby huey like. He’s a stereotyped Euro D man w/o any speed. Someone made a good comparison calling him a tripod.

  10. Sam word is Mara is not very physical either but has plenty of penaty minutes, not a good sign except he supposedly has a good offensive side. What’s with these D men & lack of grit?

  11. I didn’t notice Malik getting booed the other night the way I’ve seen him booed in the past. I am surprised Rachunek doesn’t get booed at all, he’s terrible. The problem for Marek is that taking the body is not his strength; Ranger fans have a long history of hating big defensemen that won’t hit (Willie Huber, Kevin Hatcher, Petr Popovic, Tom Poti) – Malik is being booed for that reason alone. He has played pretty well. I personally think it will go away. It was MUCH better the other night.

  12. SAM if Malik doesn’t get the boos, he’s in denial along with his coach. They all need to kick it up a notch w/o panicking. They’ve been sleepskating most of this year and post all star break, letting points slip thru their hands. That has to stop .

  13. For all you guys with season tickets, and all posters on the blog:

    Let’s cheer for Malik when he plays well, and boo him when he doesn’t. We need to respect the A.

    On the other hand, let us annoint Rachunek as the new purse-boy. He should be sitting in the press box, not Pock.

  14. Avery Blasts Brodeur on

    I hope there is 0% of Rachinek coming back next year. His contarct is up correct?

  15. Doodie Machetto on

    But he’ll be back. If they didn’t have the intention of resigning him, they would’ve either dealt him by the deadline or benched him in favor of another d-man.

  16. The thing is, he is so slow and attackers get around him so easily. So if they don’t get a shot on net, it’s because he hooked them down.

  17. Anthony (Abev) on

    Why people boo Malik:
    Rule #1 Fans 5′-8″ or less are the loudest boo-ers
    Rule #2 Said fans get upset that a guy like Malik doesn’t put everyone through the glass…”If I had his size I would…”
    Rule #3 The “+/-” argument only works when it favors you.
    Rule #4 When in doubt “He’s a Euro and hes soft”

    Most people cry when their boss gives them stuff for doing their job incorrectly (see Rule #1). Imagine 1000’s of drunks booing you for doing you job well.

  18. Longtimerangerfan on

    The only one that gets booed more than Malikenstein is “dancing” Larry aka “homo” Larry (according to many in the cheap seats).

  19. Longtimerangerfan on

    Just watch how many times Malik passes right through the crease to his defense partner…too many times I’ve seen it and that is one of the FIRST things you learn not to do.

  20. Mr Potato Head on

    The Jagr argument doesn’t really hold weight, as he’s a triple digit plus throughout his career.

    Good on him for ignoring the morons and focusing on the team and the coaching staff.

    The same people who boo Malik are the same that booed Poti, etc, and the same people who yell SHOOT!!! once the team skates by the red line

  21. onecupin67years on

    Years ago Ranger def.Harry Howell heard the dericive Boo’s as well as “Kiss him Hesshy ” from the crowd, I guess Hesshy is Yiddish for Harry. Howell was a reluctant checker using finesse despite his 6ft 2in 210lb+ body ,never fought . A 1967 of the Norris trophy and is a member of the hall of fame.

  22. Longtimerangerfan on

    Game scenario:
    Your team is up 2 to 0, there’s a two on one against, you play the your man but the other has a clear shot on goal from the goal line what do you do?
    1. Continue to play your man and let the goalie, who has a clear sight of the puck make the save or
    2. Wave your stick at it and deflect it on goal

    Hmmm, what would Malikenstein do. Oh, oh two points lost that night.

  23. Jack Tors: Let’s leave Poti out of the Malik debate. Poti deserved the trash that was heaped on him. It’s not a coincidence that Poti was booed out of Edmonton as well for his soft timid play. Are the Edmonton fans idiots too?

  24. He has more assits on goals against then anyone else now that ward is gone.

    One good pass does erase all the bad passes that led to a goal, and he is slow as molassas (spelling) in winter

  25. HockeybasedNYC on

    Wanna know why there are boos?

    Because someone has to be the whipping boy on defense. Poti had the treatment for years. Malik has played himself into it, fair or not, and i dont know if he will be able to play himself out.

    Hes gonna have to play lights out, day in day out, and make some crucial plays for this team to stop the boo-birds. There was someone else on the team that was headed down that road as well – but he turned it around and is making those plays, night in night out. His name is Marcel Hossa.

  26. To anyone complaining how “soft” Malik is, go have a look at Nick Lidstrom’s hit totals for the season and get back to me. It’s probably sub20. Thanks.
    (I am in no way comparing the two, just complaining about those that complain Marek is too “soft”)

  27. Saying Jagr is immune because he is a career triple digit +.

    Malik is also a career triple digit +.

    Jagr averages about +16 a season, Malik has averaged +13 a season.

    I think a lot of fans are baffled by Malik. He seems to make a lot of mistakes, yet he still racks up the +/- (one of the best in the NHL over the past three seasons). Not to mention, our record with Malik in the lineup is much better than our record with Malik out of the lineup. Is it a quirk of fate, or is this guy actually an invisible linchpin to our defense?

  28. Sam, great article, especially since you showed some iniative that the other beat writers have not displayed. It was a nice touch to mention his family.

    The idea that Malik is +80-90 over three seasons and is doing it by luck is just plain ridiculous. Fans have a bias against Euros and big guys who aren’t physical, but that’s not his game.

    Fans were convinced that Poti stunk, well the Isles are happy to have him, and York, the guy everyone loved and bemoans that we traded, he is a scratch for a terrible team.

    Rachunek, while somewhat erratic, is not as bad as people say and Roszival is a btter-than-average NHL defenseman. The idea that because they get beat once in a while that they are substandard also is silly, everyone gets beat, everyone makes the occasional bad decision or whiffs on a pass.

  29. sam sam sam…this is why many people dont respect your opinions. once again you show how lost you are. He doesn’t get the booing and you sit there and support him?
    He’s been more reliable than Ward was and Rachun-hack is…and your point?? They all stink. Just cause he may be 2nd or 3rd in the “I suck” line, doesn’t change the fact that he sucks.
    For every good play, there is 3 or 4 bad ones.
    Sam it might be time for a career change because this one is only getting worse

  30. Sam,

    Could this outcry for more “physical” defensemen be misdirected frustration with the new rules? I mean, aside from very mobile, big defensemen (i.e., Pronger), the new rules seem to have hurt the physical play of defensemen. Derian Hatcher for one, who was very good under the old regime, looks lost a lot of the time out there now. So did Kasparaitis before he was waived. It seems to me that the game now favors more finesse play so that a D-man does not take himself out of the play or take penalties that would not have been called before the lockout. That brings me to Malik. While he’s by no means fast, he and guys like Poti (and Marra maybe) seem well-suited to the positional/finesse game. But his perceived lack of physicality, which may in fact be benefitting his game now, is exactly what has drawn the fans’ ire. What do you think Sam? Is there room in the game today for the physical defensemen that were prevalent before the lockout?

  31. Sam, kudos to you for expressing some strong opinions in your blog this week and not pandering to your “fans.” That was the only thing lacking in your work here, and it’s great to see it. And I happen to agree with you that Malik doesn’t get nearly the credit he deserves for the good things he does on the ice.

    Btw, as a season ticket holder who gets to listen to morons in the Garden scream “shoot” the minute anyone gets the puck in the offensive zone, regardless of whether there are 3 people directly in the shooting lane, or whether they’ve just received a pass on their backhand 60 feet from the net, and as someone who’s sat through morons booing guys like Marek Malik and Kevin Weekes, regardless of their play on a given night, I have to question the “NY fans are the most sophisticated in the country” claim. Neither of the players mentioned may be god’s gift to hockey players, but neither deserve the treatment they received from fans at MSG either.

  32. DumpJagrDope on

    Fans (or at least I) want to see entertainment, not a lethargich tall stiff that has a long reach and can make a good pass once in a while. He has to play with more energy and enthusiasm and take the body–he is the biggest guy on the team yet is 14th on the team in hits with only 36 in 50 games

  33. To say that Poti was treated unfairly is absurd. He was hyped (by Sather) as a great offensive defenseman, but in reality he showed only flashes of offensive ability. I mean he used to take wrist-shots from the point on the powerplay and all he ever did was poke-check using the longest stick in the nhl. I’m glad he is gone but am afraid Mara is just another coming of an underperforming “offensive” defenseman. His numbers aren’t that good and minus 22. Mara has had one season when he was a plus player and he only played 16 games that year. I agree plus/minus does not always tell the full story. Poti was plus 16(only 23 points tho) last year with us and Malik is leading the team in plus minus. Some of that means they must be doing somethings right, but does anyone here think Poti and Malik are anything but 4-6 defenseman.

  34. DumpJagrDope on

    “Tom Renney gave him the “Aâ€? knowing full well how insulting this is to the fans who ultimately pay his salary.”

    I bet Renney thinks all the fans are really dumb, to stop booing Malik once they see an “A” on him

  35. DumpJagrDope on

    I don’t want Malik around so they would tell Staal to model himself after him. Main part why Malik is + is because Jagr’s line mostly plays against 3rd lines.

  36. DumpJagrDope on

    “I think a lot of fans are baffled by Malik. He seems to make a lot of mistakes, yet he still racks up the +/- (one of the best in the NHL over the past three seasons). Not to mention, our record with Malik in the lineup is much better than our record with Malik out of the lineup. Is it a quirk of fate, or is this guy actually an invisible linchpin to our defense?”

    what is there to be baffled by? I am more baffled by Ortmeyer being a +. But Malik is on a line that scored about 50 even strength goals so far, that means he allowed 27 goals (actually he played 13 games less but whatever) in any case if we didn’t have Lundqvist in net his +/- would be much worse.

  37. as a lifelong nyer, many of us would comment about drivers in the city, wondering how they ever got a license and how maybe people should be retested after some amount of time. i think i feel the same way about people making their idiotic comments here about malik and why people do this or do that. simple fact is that at msg, as laurie and others above noted, the same people booing anyone on our team are the same idiots who scream shoot when there is no lane open for anyone to do that, and take part in the wonder-if-it-will-ever-end moronic potvin whistle and chant. and they’re also the ones that awake from their drunken stupor when there is a whiff of a fight that might take place on the ice (but more often in the stands). i don’t know if, sam, you’re lucky enough to have some of these neanderthals posting here, but, people, show some self-restraint once in a while, huh? maybe then mommy will still let you use the computer and daddy will renew your season’s tickets next year.

    sorry for the bitter post but i just am sick and tired of some of the crap at msg, and apparently i’m not the only one. and i sit next to some people that feel the same way.

  38. Seriously – That Potvin thing has got to stop. How can NY fans be so sophisticated with that nonsense repeated several times during home games. That is just awful.

  39. I just scream “Dolan Sucks” instead of Potvin.
    At least its more up-to-date.

  40. collateral damage on

    “I suppose it’s worth mentioning that Malik has two young sons,”

    No, Sam, it isn’t worth mentioning. I would think you were trying to manipulate us if this line wasn’t so transparent. Appealing to everyone’s “sensitivity” will have little affect (these are hockey fans, after all), and while I agree Malik doesn’t deserve the boos as much as Rachunek, there comes a point where a defenseman has to ask himself if putting his stick on the ice in front of his goalie is the best decision. (All season long, how can he and Rachunek not have fixed this?) As for his sons, the humiliation of the jeers M receives is a small price to pay. (I can think of worse things people have to do in order to earn their keep, particularly when it concerns their survival, as opposed to the luxury in which M and fam must live.)

  41. collateral damage on

    Alan,

    You should visit California; the drivers there are much worse, having almost no fear of consequences, unlike NYers, of the accidental or mob guy in the other car sort.

  42. I agree. We shouldn’t be screaming shoot. If you think about it, by the time we scream shoot the lane has closed, if it was ever open in the first place. Regardless, the team does need to shoot more. You can’t pass it into the net everytime. We should be testing goaltenders earlier to find their weaknesses.

    As for Booing, I don’t think anyone should boo. Why do we boo the other team every time they come out on the ice? Ok, if its the Flyers, Devils, Islanders, fine, but do we need to boo Columbus or Chicago? And why are we booing our own team at all? It makes no sense. Do we actually think that by booing Malik he’s going to turn around and say, you know what they are right, I better stop sucking, because until I heard boos I wasn’t trying at all.

  43. The Potvin chant is harmless fun; I like it. Of course it’s ridiculous —- that’s its charm! A guy who’s been retired for 100 years is still reviled as actively as if he were in the middle of his career. Those who want to see the chant as evidence that the Garden faithful are idiot boors are missing the point —– the people who are chanting it are fully aware of how insane and silly and off-point it is; they’re in on the joke, OK everybody? And the added benefit is that they are also IDing themselves as part of an enduring culture that goes back many years, and whose favorite whipping boy will never be forgotten. I say Amen.

  44. Sorry, but I am spoiled having followed Hartford so closely the last five years. They don’t do what our Rangers do, and they have had great seasons/playoffs.

    When NHLers get paid big bucks and we pay high ticket prices and cable/satellite fees, we need to see good play constantly. When we get this, we can forgive the occasional bad play or rookie mistake, and we wouldn’t boo certain players all the time. Look at how Ranger fans take to Henrik and Shanny. They give it their all every game and when a mistake occurs they are given the pass because they do so much well and are stand up guys.

    My son freqeuntly asks why MSG doesn’t put Hartford games on the network instead of some of the stupid programming that they air. Besides the costs, it is now very clear. MSG doesn’t want to embarrass the Rangers by showing the great play of the kids we make the Wolf Pack an exciting team to watch.

  45. True Fans bleed RW&B on

    1. The potvin chant is awful. I have to explain what it actually means to at least 2 people (who follow along) every game.

    2. Poti was awful. OK, not awful but he was pretty bad. He had the defensive skills of Brian Leetch and the offensive skills of Rachunek – what does that give you? Aaron Ward – and thats useless to a hockey team…he was booed right out of Edm and NYR…so good luck NYI and good riddance.

    3. Malik has been our steadiest defensman the past 2 months. Roszival thinks he’s Nylander and makes the worst turnovers or gets pressured into making horrible passes. Tyutin, who knows what his problem is. Rachunek has been atrocious for a month now…and Gerardi, well maybe he and Malik have been acceptable.

    4. People boo Malik because: they expect a big man to use his size. He’s european. They need a whipping boy for a lost season. He’s not a goal scorer (which we see with Hossa does redeem players). He started the season off horribly. And, because of his size, he is a lumbering/slower player. And despite playing sound hockey the past month alot of NYR fans are idiots and just follow the bandwagon (see: point #1 – “Potvin Chant”)

    5. Furthermore, now that i’m ranting about the “bandwagon-eers,” to give Jagr crap about not taking a shootout is disgusting as well. Its been all over the media since the Devils shootout and it makes me sick. Jagr is awful at shootouts! One of the worst. Other captains respectfully how out (Forsberg, Gomez, and Elias). And if you don’t think Jagr already knows its not his forte’, esp vs. Brodeur, then enlighten yourself with this video:

    http://youtube.com/watch?v=Tnrzrxmw1_s

  46. Yeah, Sam, I gotta say that kid bit was a tad on the manipulative side. That being said, I agree Malik has played better. But his play is still inconsistent and I can’t stomach the through-the-crease passes. I know you said someone in the NHL considers him one of the best short pass players in the game, but I don’t see it.

    I don’t really like the booing or the “shoot” calls (although maybe we could put this into some headphones for Nylander as he circles), but I think the Potvin whistle is great. It’s MSG tradition and a connection to a day when the blue seats were blue and not everything in the garden cost too much green.

  47. Jagr was horrible on shootouts last season, hell he broke his stick during at least one, maybe more that I can’t remember now. What qualifies him as a sure-thing in a SO?

  48. Jagr went 2 for 8 last season. 25% for those math majors out there. Malik had the best percentage of 1 for 1. Prucha, Cullen and Nylander were ahead of him (respectively).

  49. OK, these are good responses.

    Here’s a couple of my own.

    First of all, while I’m not a big fan of booing at all, my point is that Malik certainly left himself open to it earlier in the year, but that it hasn’t been as justified of late.

    I happen to agree with many of you who say it’s because Malik doesn’t play a physical game for someone his size. I think that’s a valid argument, and it’s something I mentioned in my story in today’s paper.

    As for mentioning his sons, why wouldn’t I? It ties into what I said earlier. Yes, when you get paid millions of dollars to play a game you leave yourself open to criticism when you play bad — even if your own children have to hear it. My point, however, is that it’s a much more difficult thing to explain to your kids when you get booed for making an assist. That’s when it’s construed as personal, and that’s when a guy’s family is relevant.

    Sam

  50. poti was traded out of edmonton and wasnt booed. he was fairly productive for them so im not sure what your talking about. he was a 3rd rd pick not a pedigree defenseman…he lived up to his expectations.

  51. DumpJagrDope on

    “Jagr was horrible on shootouts last season, hell he broke his stick during at least one, maybe more that I can’t remember now. What qualifies him as a sure-thing in a SO?”

    nobody is a sure thing

  52. DumpJagrDope on

    Are we supposed to feel bad for a guy who is making 2.5 mil that his young sons might hear his dad being booed? I wish I had his problems. Cry me a fucking river.

  53. DumpJagrDope on

    I think if Poti didn’t have allergies he would have gone in the 1st round

  54. Thordic March 1st, 2007 at 9:26 am
    Its unfortunate that during a frustrating season a lot of fans seem to need SOMEONE to single out and take out their frustrations on.
    Malik simply gets it this year due to his play earlier in the season that drew the ire of the fans. I didn’t know he was booed for an assist, thats stupid.
    Say what you will, but I will never boo my team. I may curse at them, call them names, and throw my remote control, but when I’m at the games I’d rather be silent than boo my own team. end of quote.

    Oh, for the moral highground!

    I don’t boo, I curse, hiss, break Sony items, but I don’t boo. I do, however, look down upon those who do. I judge those that judge my team. I judge their expression, but not my own. Sorry, thordic, I could not resist.

  55. You can’t boo the guy when he is bad and them boo him again when he does well – just doesn’t make any sense. Malik may not be physical but I think he hears it so often because his defensive performance earlier this season is now forcing this team to play .750 hockey for the rest of the games to squeek into 8th place.

    Don’t give me that old time MSG – Ranger fan, Islander hater crap – so I can scream “potvin sucks” whenever I please nonsense. Jeez – let it go already. Hardly anyone knows what it even is about anymore. Not that we should forget but I don’t need to scream my colors (or anything) to make my point about it. It’s really about the idiot who gets a charge out of whistling loud enough to get a reaction from the MSG crowd.

  56. Sam,

    it is played “badly”.

    Also, I think more people are upset at his passing in front of his own net, and his lazy penalties than the fact that he is a big guy who does not use his size. Euro’s generally do not play big. Look at Jagr. He is about 245lbs and needs protection?

    As for the fan that said that the only people that boo Malik are below 5′ 8″ tall, I have but one word:

    projection.

    Moving on.

    Fans can (and do) express their opinion quite well at the Garden. When you get paid millions of dollars in New York it is something that I am quite sure your agent told you about. If you wanted to play in LA, and get some sun, I think that there are enough fans who will chip in and pay your fare.

    Have some respect for the fans. Booing on an assist is more a New York sarcasm than anything else. Remember Weakes giving up four straight goals and then stops an easy one and the fans cheer? Sarcasm.

    It is part of the New York culture.

    Over 5’8″ guy: stop measuring yourself. High school is over. Get a big dog. Get a loud pipe motorcycle. Get a “hot rod” car. Find something that will help.

  57. Jack Tors

    You got it wrong —- Poti was booed without pause for the last half-season plus that he played in Edmonton. It was absolutely a factor in him being traded to NY.

  58. DumpJagrDope on

    “I don’t boo, I curse, hiss, break Sony items, but I don’t boo. I do, however, look down upon those who do.”

    sounds like you are a moron. At least booing leys the management know how fans feel so some changes will be made in a hurry. I don’t know what hissing like a homo does or why break electronics?

  59. re the Potvin chant – I think it has changed its meaning over the yrs. currently means the Islanders and their fans s*ck. I actually wish it would stop. Maybe then the NYI fans would stop talking about their 4 cups like they happened yesterday.

  60. goalbyPrucha on

    Seamus said:

    “”New York fans are among the most sophisticated in the country. Why the boos?

    1. Because of slow, cumbersome skating; also perceived as a lack of effort. Players blur by him consistently.

    2. Because of ridiculous, lazy, and unneccesary penalties. What would his +/- look like if every goal that goes in while he sits in the box was counted? All he can do, as somone whizzes by him, is reach out with his stick and hook them.

    3. Because of his penchant of moving the puck in front of his own goalie. Lundqvst must go nutz when this guy is on the ice.

    4. His ability to assist the other team in goals. He and Rachunek are obviously fighting it out for the number 1 spot in this category.

    Can you imagine how good Lundqvst would be if he played for the Devils??

    Tom Renney gave him the “A� knowing full well how insulting this is to the fans who ultimately pay his salary.

    It is a disgrace.””

    :::APPLAUSE!!!:::

  61. poti was booed because of his hold out, NOT his play.

    SEAMUS: when writing blogs grammatical mistakes are tolerated…..blogs are written in a colloquial manner. so quit being a tithead with the corrections its not his masters thesis.

  62. Re: Potvin Sucks – My aunt is a huge Islanders fan. Denis Potvin is her god. Whenever we watch the Rangers play at MSG (or elsewhere because Rangers fans are EVERYWHERE) and the fans do the “Potvin Sucks” chant, she goes on a 25 minute lecture in defense of Denis Potvin and the rest of the Islanders. It really gets to her. That’s when I know that the “Potvin Sucks” chant does what it’s supposed to do. We should keep it, no, cherish it forever.
    About Malik – stop booing him. He’s just a big guy with a contact problem…apparently he doesn’t like to be touched. Read into that whatever you want. As a group, we Ranger fans need to band together to boo the new enemy. Rachunek must go. He’s been given about 500 too many chances by the Rangers. Bring back Kaspar – he was our heart & soul last season. We need that chemistry back!

  63. “Bring back Kaspar – he was our heart & soul last season. We need that chemistry back!”

    teams dont win with heart they win with talent… the “hes got heart” crap is the mantra of a loser. this team has a talent deficiency not a heart deficiency. hollweg, prucha and orts can keep their heart, ill take talent over them any day.

    dont use the past ranger teams as examples that talented teams fail because when your avg age is 36 you dont have talent either. they had neither talent nor heart.

  64. I don’t think the fans should boo ANYONE on our own team. I share season tickets and every game it pisses me off to hear fans disrespecting their own players. If someone near me boos a player tonight at the rangers/penguins game, I’m gonna punch ’em in the back of the head!

    8cott

  65. DumpJagrDope on

    I really didn’t see much of a change in Kasparaitis’ play this season from last season, so I don’t really get why he was banished by Renney

  66. Talafous, great point re: the Potvin chant. It’s a quirky, charming tradition. I’m amazed how many fusspots think that it’s a sign of low class or something.

    Many good points about why fans boo Malik. Let me sum them up in one place.

    1. He’s an enormous defenseman who plays very soft. On a team that loses way too many physical battles in its own end, to have your biggest defenseman play like a puss is a real letdown.

    2. He’s ponderous and clumsy on his skates. Some say “tripod,” I say “tree sloth.” This also carries down to his hand and stick speed. He often gets stripped of the puck by smaller, quicker players.

    3. He makes many imprudent passes, both in front of his goalie and when trying to break out. Likewise he seems have a knack for setting screens and deflections on his own goalie.

    4. He has — or anyway, projects — an aloof, arrogant, attitude.

    I can’t account for his +/- numbers; it’s quite a mystery. Either the numbers don’t tell the whole story, or appearances don’t. But what the booing fans see is the appearances.

  67. Potvin is one of the worst broadcasters in hockey, therefore, he still sucks and is worthy of the chant.

  68. stop the nonsense. If Malik was on the 3rd pair with Raccoon and played with the Ranger 2,3,and 4th lines all the time, he would be a MINUS.

    Malik plays against the opponents 3rd line all the time, a checking line sent out to shadow Jagr, thus they don’t score a lot vs. Rangers when Malik is on ice. and he gets the pluses when the Jagr line scores. the best of both worlds in the plus minus dept.

    and when Malik was in Vanc, he had the same benefit. he played with the Naslund Bertuzzi line when they were at their peak.

    But yes, to be fair, hockey fans in ALL cities are disgruntled with big guys who play soft or look slow or don’t hit. that is just the way it is.

    but to give malik credit he is NOT due because of a deceptive + – figure is just as unfair.

    the vast majority of malik’s + – totals are the result of who he is playing with, and who he is playing against.

  69. and also Malik and Jagr have taken 57 penalties, 31 minors by jagr, and 26 minors by Malik, and neither one of those guys has thrown one single REAL Hollweg-like bodycheck all season.

    how many goals have the opponents scored, and how many games have the Rangers lost, while Jagr and malik have sat 57 times in the penalty box for lazy hooking and tripping.

  70. Sam you bastard ;)you had to go and make Malik human by mentioning his kids no i live in Tampa and its not like I’m booing him at these games but if I were at the game I would boo or at leasr i would of booed before you made him human and not just a player. I think its not so much disliking Malik hell none of us know him well enuf to like or dislike him its the fustration we feel seeing him play poorly while Pock is watching from the pressbox. we are fustrated the fans could see who is playing poorly why can’t the coach.

  71. “single REAL Hollweg-like bodycheck all season”

    HAHAHAHAHAHAAHAH you forgot to add that malik and jagr also havent gotten their asses kicked in every fight like hollweg. hollweg’s hits are brutal because he is tiny and when push comes to shove he cant hang with the big boys. his hits make tons of noise but his bark is worse then his bite…when was the last time he laid someone out and left them wooz ala kasper or chris neil(using him since he is in the news for doing such a thing)

  72. “”malik and jagr also havent gotten their asses kicked in every fight””

    no, because they are too soft and gutless to even get in one. they run like scared rabbits and then Shanny has to come to the aid of the skirt-wearing euro softies.
    the only laughable thing here is you and your little malik and poti hero worship. now that’s funny.

  73. Jack Tors March 1st, 2007 at 3:30 pm
    poti was booed because of his hold out, NOT his play.
    SEAMUS: when writing blogs grammatical mistakes are tolerated…..blogs are written in a colloquial manner. so quit being a tithead with the corrections its not his masters thesis.

    Tithead, Jack?

    do you really think a Journalist does NOT care about grammaical mistakes? Jack, you don’t know jack about journalists. They care.

    Sam, set him straight on this one. I don’t know what a tithead is, but I hope it has nothing to do with a Adam Sandler movie, or Jack’s misguided sexual fantasies; or even a turkish prison movie. Every journalist, wannabe journalist, or even just a person who cares about the English language likes to write things correctly.

    Jack,

    stick to complimenting Malik on his fine defensive play, his punishing hits, and his great +/-.. You might do good to do that.

  74. Dump wrote:

    DumpJagrDope March 1st, 2007 at 2:18 pm
    “I don’t boo, I curse, hiss, break Sony items, but I don’t boo. I do, however, look down upon those who do.�
    sounds like you are a moron. At least booing leys the management know how fans feel so some changes will be made in a hurry. I don’t know what hissing like a homo does or why break electronics?>>

    dumpjagr, the above quote came from Thordic. He doesn’t boo. He just condemns those that do, and he stays home and breaks small Japanese electronics that he overpaid for in the first place. This is Thordic’s way of sending a message to the Ranger organization that he is tired of something. What? I don’t know. But thordic is very, very tired.

  75. im not worshipping malik and poti. i just dont understand what you expect or expected from them?? neither are #1 or 2 defensemen, neither were billed as such and neither had expectations to be that good. if the rangers brass decides to pair them as such its the fault of the organization not the player. boo sather and company for overpaying them and forcing them to be a #1 or #2 dman.

    dlv: im going to guess your 5’5″ and 120lbs all wet. its jagrs job to get points and he is doing a great job at that. its hollweg’s job to win fights and intimidate others…..he has failed miserably at it. the orty, hollweg, prucha fan boy attitude is sickening. they stink. its how isles fans look at bates….

  76. Malik with two crap hooking penalties in the first. He has scored 6 goals AGAINST the Rangers and one goal FOR the Rangers next year.

    Next year’s defensemen should be:

    Roszival Mara
    Tyutin Girardi
    Liffiton Pock/Baranka/Strudwick

    Get of Frankenmalik. He is, by far, the worst player on the Rangers. AT least Rachunek has a solid shot.

  77. Please, can you PM me and tell me quantity of much a lot more thinks about this, I’m truly fan of one’s webpage…gets solved correctly asap.

  78. ?????????? – ?? ?????????? ????????? ? ???????????? ?????? ??????? ? ??????????, ? ????? ?????? ??????, ?????, ??????, ?????, ?????. ?????? ????? ? ?????

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