When does the parade start?


“Let’s just give them the Cup. If I had it with me, I’d hand it to them.”

That was the dripping sarcasm of Jaromir Jagr in the hallway today responding to the frenzy around the Sabres’ Game 1 win. As I alluded to earlier, there is indeed a growing sense in this city that the Sabres are going to waltz into the Conference Finals based on what has already transpired here. None of that, mind you, comes from the Rangers, who seem to be scoffing at the notion that Wednesday was anything more than a mediocre start to what will likely be a long series.

The mood was fairly confident, and jovial, as usual. I was summarily mocked by Brendan Shanahan for chewing an oversized piece of gum, while Jagr continued his season-long pestering of Kevin Weekes.

Meanwhile, some updates:

  • Yes, Michal Rozsival looked sharp in the morning skate and said he was good to go tonight. A cautious Tom Renney suggested that he doesn’t want to use Rozsival tonight if it comes at the expense of his availability later in the series, but Rozsival said it wasn’t an issue. “I feel good. It feels fine,” he said. “I’ll settle down so I don’t have any worries at this point.”
  • As for the use of seven defenseman as a precaution, Renney said it was “an outside option,” and he will definitely skate seven in the warm-up. My guess is given how the Sabres effectively roll four lines, the Rangers would like to avoid being shorthanded at forward. Either way, Thomas Pock said he’d be ready regardless.

    “As much as I want to play, I want the team to win,” Pock said. “Whatever happens, I’ll be ready if they need me two days from now or two weeks from now.”

  • Sean Avery continues to be a source of attention given his comments earlier in the week. Now his mother is planning on being in attendance for Game 2, leading to the question if he needs to be on his best behavior.

    “She likes it when I’m behaving poorly,” Avery said. “She’s used to it by now.”

  • As for the portrayal of Jagr as being agitated with the media yesterday, I never got that sense. But I asked him if that was accurate. The Captain rolled his eyes and said he was simply joking around. “You guys know me,” he said. “Some of these guys don’t.”

    OK, more later…

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    1. I suggest we dress Avery’s mom and throw her on the blue line. Bet she’s tough. And probably not too much slower than some of these guys…

      Okay, enough joking.

      Let’s Go Rangers!

    2. Good news about Rozsival- I hope he does indeed dress tonight.

      Hopefully the ‘frenzy’ in Buffalo might 1) put too much pressure on the Sabres to perform, as was the case in the series against the Islanders, in which their play was less than impressive, and 2) give the Rangers that emotional edge that they had the whole Atlanta series, yet lacked on Wednesday.

    3. what’s an outside option? an outside chance? playing hollweg 5 minutes is not better than giving Pock those 5 + so the d is not in the same situation as wed.

    4. it is amazing how much i hate buffalo now with their over confidence…hopefully they keep it up and take shifts off

    5. I believe Sam is referring to the sense of the Sabres’ superiority amongst the fans and the media in Buffalo. The Sabres players themselves have been wise to keep their mouths shut and insist they’re only concentrating on playing their own game. Exactly the kind of thing Renney and the Rangers should have done before game 1.

      Regardless, this series is far from over. I still think it goes 6 games at least. I’m sure the Rangers are fed up with the questions from both cities’ reporters over the last two days and will use that as a little motivation.

    6. they did do that prior to game one. none of the comments made were bad besides avery’s hatred one.

    7. more rally cries for the chips, give them a cup of soup to keep warm when they lose this series.

    8. Thanks for all the updates today Sam! I’m hoping all this Sabres winning the cup talk will be just the right motivation for the Rangers to squash those plans, starting tonight.

    9. Buffalo Parade ?


    10. Sam, was there ever any talk, or did someone bring up the option, of using Pock at forward? I believe he played one game this year at LW (and they won the game too). I would put him on the 4th line and if need be drop back to D if someone gets hurt. Let’s face it, if it’s a tie game or a close game with 10 minutes left, Renney wouldn’t roll 4 lines anyway. The only way to beat this team is to shove their style, of run and gun, right back in their face on the counter-attack. Orr’s too slow and Hollweg, god bless him, couldn’t score if the objective of the game was too hit the end wall. Why not use Pock?

    11. Nich, you have a point. The ‘cream of the crop’ comment Renney made was taken out of context because that’s how the question was phrased. And it was really the reporters on both sides that fanned the flames.

      Still, I’ve always thought it’s best to give the other team nothing that can be taken as an insult. Praise them publicly, while telling your own team how beatable they are in private. Without Renney and Avery’s comments, the Buffalo media would have been wringing their hands about whether or not the Sabres were going to play the same lackluster hockey they did against the Isles. And that’s what the conversation would have been leading up to this series.

      Still, Nich, you’ve got a point.

    12. why would any normal fan want to sign a 31 yearold Drury when we can just play Dawes? They are very similar players. Sure Drury is a bit better and more proven, but he is also old and expensive. I rather develop Dawes or another rookie.

      All the Hollweg and Rachunek bashing is ridiculous, stupid and unjustified. They didn’t in any way lose the game for us. Renney did.

    13. If Rozsival’s injury is so minor, why didn’t he come back for the 3rd period last game?

    14. I hope the Sabres come out strong and the Rangers just outplay them and win. I don’t want the Sabres to play like the Rangers did in game 1. The Rangers need to beat the Sabres at their best to give them the confidence going back to MSG.

    15. I’m not trying to be negative here but buffalo had the most points this year and still were winning games when some of there star players were not playing because of injury. As I see it the best senario is the rangers win two games and loose in six, the worst is them getting swept. The only chance of the rangers winning this round is if Lundquist plays on his head which I doubt. I didn’t even expect the rangers to make the playoffs so for them to go to the second round is gravy.

    16. Stick to the game plan and don’t get rattled, instead rattle Miller, We need Avery to get in his face. Also put pressure on their D, They don’t exactly have 6 Niedermayers back there. Drive to the net and force THEM to take penalties.

      LETS GO RANGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    17. I consider Buffalo part of Canada. Any American city who plays the Canadian National Anthem before a game when thereis no team from Canada even in the building should be ashamed of itself. This is America. I dont care about class or any of that nonsense. Maybe thats why all the calls run their way

    18. they can’t fill their arena w/o getting fans from canada, they are the debbies north.

    19. Go NYR,

      The Canadian anthem thing is just good business. Roughly 30% of the fans at any game come from Canada, more when Toronto is the opponent. That show of respect for the neighbors helps keep the ticket revenue flowing in from up North. Even if a good portion of those fans come to cheer against the Sabres no matter who they play, it makes sense to keep them happy.

    20. Good to see Rosi is alright. Their fans seem alittle overconfident, would love to knock them off their happy cloud.

    21. TIRF (Typical Idiot Rangers Fan) on

      What a stupid point about not being able to fill their rink without Canadians, bklyn. Have you ever looked at a map? Southern Ontario is part of their metro market. Would we sell out MSG if we relied ONLY on Manhattan?

      It is shit like this why took this name. So much idiocy, so little time.


    22. National anthems have no business in sporting events, only stupid people don’t realise that.

    23. But if I go to a CANADIAN Sporting event, why should they play the US National Anthem? It makes no sense. We are in America. If you want to hear “O Canada” You would not go to an Ameircan sporting event.

    24. Also, it sounds as if Buffalo is a tad bit cocky. One game means very little. Tell Sully he shoul wait til the series is over to party

    25. tirf if & when they ever win the Cup let me know how many people show to their parade. So I guess you think they should play canada’s anthem especially when they boo the USA’s in their country, genius. Check your map of NYC, it’s not just Manhattan. Idiot fits you as well as anyone smartass.

    26. Jagr’s dry sense of humor is awesome. he def gets annoyed when people cant play along. he is the man. its nice to see him approach hockey for what it is….a game.

    27. Actuall, if they lowered the prices a little bit they could sell out MSG with Manhattan only. They have such demand for tix from LI, Northern Jersey, Southern New York and Connecticut that it allows their tix to be priced so highly

    28. TIRF (Typical Idiot Rangers Fan) on

      I am not claiming that NYC is just Manhattan, although many snob ass Manhattanites I know refer to Manhattan as The City. My point is you have no point.

    29. TIRF (Typical Idiot Rangers Fan) on

      Also, the national anthems have been booed in both countries.

    30. I agree about Jagr, some media types are too serious, they have no sense of humor. Jagr is awesome.

    31. Heave Ho – This is the kind of game that we will look back on and say, “The Rangers came back strong in the second round and put to rest all questions about their ability to compete for the CUP”. After a loss in the first game, the Rangers got back on track and proved that they can overcome adversity and find a way to win no matter what.

      Series tied 1 – 1, then back to MSG, the worlds most famous arena!

      Lets Go Rangers!

    32. GuitarWizard on

      “I was summarily mocked by Brendan Shanahan for chewing an oversized piece of gum, while Jagr continued his season-long pestering of Kevin Weekes.”

      Kevin Weekes is on our team?

    33. F… Buffalo! We will fight hard and win tonight! And I will tell you more; we’ll win it all. I came to NYC the year Rangers won the cup – 1994. Now my son is getting born in May – that means it’s time for another cup – RANGERS 2007

      OH BABY!

    34. ORR kicks Ying Yang on

      If i were Renney..Its simple..Take Hollweg out..Put Pock in…Play Pock on the 4th line…Then if something happens with rozie..Play pocky on D..

      LOL GUITAR WIZARD….I forgot about Weekes…Its so obvious hes gone next season…

      I dont know about any of you…but….i sure as sh*t felt really good about Marty Broduer giving up 4 or 5 goals on 9 shots..Oooff…

    35. Sam, how is the parking lot at the arena? Enough room for Buffalo to have their parade in the parking lot like the Devils do?

    36. “why would any normal fan want to sign a 31 yearold Drury when we can just play Dawes? They are very similar players. Sure Drury is a bit better and more proven, but he is also old and expensive. I rather develop Dawes or another rookie.”

      what an ignorant statement. DRURY is an excellent, topnotch DEFENSIVE C, as well as a good scorer and a winning leader.

      Dawes is weak defensively, a below-avg. puckhandler, but a good sniper, and he’s not a C.

    37. This national anthem debate is ridiculous. The Sabres market to southern ontario as do the Bills. Obviously Buffalo is much smaller market than the NYC Metro area, so they need to branch out to other areas like Rochester and Ontario. It makes good business sense to play the Canadian anthem – most of NHL the players come from Canada anyways (well most teams except NYR – do you guys have something against North Americans?)

    38. Comparing Drury to Dawes is like comparing a Ferrari to a Ford. Have you ever watched a game before?

    39. agree with you Sully – no comparison between Drury and Dawes. Would love to get Drury in offseason. But for now focused on this series.

    40. LI Joe – I don’t want to lose him, but if I were Rangers I would go after Drury as well. He plays power play, man down, and is our lead face off guy. Sam won’t like him though – we doesn’t really talk to the press.

    41. I’m not a Manhattanite but I still refer to Manhattan as the City. If I have to go to a borough, I’ll say I’m going to Queens, Brooklyn, etc. Manhattan is always just the City. Sorry if the residents of other boroughs feel slighted, but I’m from Jersey, and everyone craps on us constantly, so get used to it! :)

      In any case, I didn’t get to watch game 1 due to work, and they lost. I’ll be watching the game tonight, so hopefully that turns their luck around and they pull this one out! (I watched all four of the first games and they won them all, so I must be good luck, right?)

    42. GO NYR,

      Yea that is rather amusing. Wow even Buffalo’s press is a bunch of homers. Sick of that city and team.
      I hope We beat them up tonight and come back here 1-1.

      LETS GO RANGERS!!!!!!!!!!!

    43. TIRF – I actually find more people from the outer boroughs refer to Manhattan as the city. Why? i don’t know. It’s like someone from Queens going to Manhattan says, “I’m going to the city.” Huh? You’re already in the city! I, being from Manhattan, refer to the five boroughs as NYC.

    44. Funny

      I travel a lot to Baltimore and DC and tell clients for example, “that i’ll be in the city until Thursday…etc.”

      They usually know that i’m referring to Manhattan, but occasionally, I get this quizzical look and then they ask, “what city?”

      …and then the “you New Yorkers are so self centered and full of yourselves.”

    45. The City = Manhattan.
      New York = the 5 boroughs
      Upstate = Westchester County
      the rest is the rest to us city folk.

      I listened to some of the post skate interviews on Rangers on demand and I was appauled at how bad the questions were for the most part. “What part of Buffalo is scarier, the depth or the speed?”
      “How do you think you can possibly match up to their transition game?”
      “Why are you even suiting up and going on the ice? You have no chance at all.”

      The last one wasn’t actually spoken, just implied.

      I hope the Rangers take this chance to show the Buffalo media that they’re getting ahead of themselves. I can’t pallate this blatant Fanboyism from some reporters when most of the national media thinks that this series will be a close, hard battle.

      Well, now the Rangers can look and feel like the underdogs — a role that has benefitted them all season.

      I don’t like that old addage that going down 0-2 and coming home for 2 games isn’t that bad of a bad position. Tonght’s game is big.

      Let’s go Rangers!

    46. Hello from Kansas!!! I’m BEYOND pumped up for tonight’s game. Too bad I get off work at 6:30. Oh well, someone has to give topeka their weather forecast right?
      Anyhow… to me… here are the keys to the game.

      1) Forecheck forecheck forecheck: Avery said it best- Punish their D-men. I didn’t see enough of that in game one. We need one forward up to always be in the puck moving defenseman’s face…or better yet, put them on their ass.

      2) STOP backing into our own zone. We gave them too much respect, and way too much room off the rush. Stand them up on the freaking blueline!!!! Fedor Tyutin….please administer that hip check on multiple occasions tonight ;-)

      3) Speed Speed Speed!!!!! Their was too much standing around in game one instead of taking it to them (with an exception to the prucha, cullen, callahan line).

      That’s just my 2 cents.. Ok, back to work.

    47. Craig

      I agree-

      …and on point number 3, That line got about 10:00 of playing time.
      I still can’t figure that one out-

    48. Prucha got a lousy 7:42 of ice time and Cally got 10:14.

      Cullen got about 15, probably from being pointman on a few PP’s-

    49. LET'S GO RANGERS on

      I liked how Cullen seemed to be in front of the crease with every puck that Miller froze. That line appeared to have tons of energy – hopefully they will be rewarded with a couple goals.

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