The ingredients of a good team are A) they win the games they should win; and B) they occasionally win the games they shouldn’t.
The Rangers have managed the first part during their six of seven stretch at home. And they managed the second last night, prevailing in Toronto with the potentially rusty Stephen Valiquette in net.
Now, before we start slapping a label on this team, let’s at least agree that there have been some encouraging signs of late — from Valiquette’s 32 saves against the Leafs, to the Gordie Howe hat trick by Sean Avery.
Say what you want about Avery — and people say plenty — there is no question the Rangers are a better team with him in the lineup. Some of that is fire or spunk or whatever you want to call it. But the guy can play, too, as evidenced by his brilliant set up of Brendan Shanahan in the second period. I don’t know what he really is — a second-liner or a third-liner or something in between. But another sign of a good team is how a good player can seem great in the right uniform.
Unfortunately for the Rangers, they’ve had plenty of players who’ve gone the other way while in New York — hello, Matt Cullen and seemingly hundreds of others — but with Avery right now, something is clicking.
Meanwhile, on this deserved day off, “check out this video”:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6BjeiVKwgeU from loyal reader Anthony compiling Avery’s efforts last night.