“Did we play Monday?”


That was Tom Renney’s response to my question about what his team takes away from Monday’s undressing from Carolina.

I’m not sure any more explanation is needed. If that was the first game of the season, or even a game played a few weeks into the schedule, maybe then you look at it as symptomatic of a larger problem. Instead, Renney’s point is that it was a mere bump in the road: a bad game on an off night against a much hungrier opponent. The Rangers intend to move on. Whether they succeed in that regard is something we’ll know in a couple of hours.

In other news:

  • The Rangers will have four prospects in this month’s World Junior Championship in the Czech Republic: Bobby Sanguinetti for the US, Artem Anisimov and Alexei Cherepanov for Russia, and Carl Hagelin, a freshman at the University of Michigan, for Sweden. The question was raised whether Renney still pulls for his native Canada in these tournaments or if he is only interested in his prospects. The coach said something about how he mostly follows his prospects, but then made a joking reference to his aspirations of coaching Team Canada in the 2010 Winter Olympics in Vancouver. In other words, he hasn’t forgotten his roots.
  • Henrik Lundqvist might not be a lock for tomorrow in Atlanta. Renney said he will have Steve Valiquette on alert depending on tonight. My guess is if the Rangers beat Toronto, Valiquette gets the nod against the Thrashers.
  • For those who missed it, the CBC has “come out with this report”:http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/story/2007/12/05/nhl-bertuzzi-moore-lawsuit.html that says then-Vancouver coach Marc Crawford ordered the infamous Todd Bertuzzi hit on Steve Moore in 2004. The report is based on court documents. Yikes…

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    1. Who do you root for in these type of tournaments? I always root for Team No Injuries myself.

      Valliquette should start at least one of these games.

    2. This whole Crawford thing is getting blown out of proportion. Who cares if Crawford told his team to get payback on Moore? That could have meant to lay him out. Did Crawford tell his team, “I want someone to skate up to Moore from behind, sucker punch him in his temple, and then drive him face first to break his neck.” Give me a break. Bertuzzi is the one to blame here.

    3. You being the coach cannot but a bounty on someone’s head. I know it is from Slap Shot but a coach has to be responsible as well. He is the “leader” of the team.


    4. Doodie Machetto on

      I’ve got to agree with you. He has to pay doesn’t equal that type of brutality. Bertuzzi should have been arrested.

      It’s too bad for Steve Moore that his suit got thrown out of US courts. any recovery he gets in Canada will be nothing by comparison to what he would get in the US.

    5. Peter FLUCHA needs to be traded…with the “captain”.

      Did anyone see that “patch” that Rammer showed on Inside the Rangers on ‘the game 365’ on Gomez’s right hand while they were in Bleeker Records? Sam, catch that? Any word on a lingering injury?

      Hank looks soft. Team looks soft. Avery…get healthy!!

      Disapointing play even though its 2-2. Should be leading.

      In the words of the GREAT Sam Weinman….”More Later”

    6. they woke up… they are lucky to be tied.. toronto is 1/2 asleep also..

      they need to work hard…

    7. Doodie Machetto on

      By the way, I was arguing that the Ducks would have to clear up cap space to make room for Niedermayer. Read this:


      specifically, “Two: even if he is in game shape, Niedermayer is not eligible to go back on the 23-man roster of the Ducks until Anaheim GM Brian Burke clears cap space for next year – called “tagging” room – by moving a player currently on the roster who is also under contract next season. By everyone’s estimate, *the Ducks need to free up about $3 million* worth of next season’s salary commitment in order to get Niedermayer back in the lineup now.”

      So, I return to my earlier position that Niedermayer is screwing the Ducks, because they’ll have to deal away their future, and get crappy returns because they are in a position of weakness.

    8. Doodie Machetto on

      Does anyone else think that the Dubinsky centering Jagr experiment should come to an end?

    9. I’m not watching the game, just following online. 4 goals on 10 shots!!! Someone tell me what’s happening?! Henry having an off night, or are they just giving up grade A scoring chances?

    10. Seamus O Riley on

      Malik looks great tonight.

      Thanks, Tom.

      Also, thanks for Hossa and Prucha. 1 goal between them. Keep giving lots and lots of minutes to Hossa and malik.

    11. Sam ask Renney when is the next game, they didn’t play Monday or Thursday. Is he that dumbfounded during games.

    12. Doodie Machetto on

      Also Ken, I don’t know your situation, but you can listen to the radio feed of the game online through NHL.com.

    13. How much longer til the Malik experiment ends? is it more or did pairing staal with the big boys make everyone better? Id rather try Malik-Strudwick then suffer through another period of Malik-Roszival. Wonder if Renney will have the smarts to make the change tomorrow.

    14. did we play thursday.. enough of hollwegg and his dance.. I know believe Orr is actually a moreeffective player..

      another terrible effort..

      were is Dawes????>?

      Weak game from Henrik, WEAK…….

    15. Doodie Machetto on


      Malik-Kasparaitis (For St. Petersberg SKA)

      Renney didn’t like Dawes’ game, but he can’t possibly like what he’s been getting out of Dubinsky.

    16. THEY HAVE 5 FORWARD THEY SO FAR CANNOT SCORE.. THE INFAMOUS 4th line and prucha and hossa…

      you cannot win with only 7 forwards.

      what is the benefit of hollweg??he is weak in the defensive zone and cannot hit the sied of a barn…..

    17. Doodie Machetto on

      I’ve gotta take a break from the Rangers. Too stressful.

      Sam, when you see Malik, give him a swift kick in the nuts.

    18. I’m starting to think the so-called “depth” at forward for the Rangers has been greatly exaggerated.

      Granted, we have a lot of forwards who can’t score worth a lick, but I wouldn’t necessarily classify that as depth.

    19. Another disgraceful effort by this team once again. defense has been atrocious (thanks in large to the return of the terrible Marek Malik) and having Dudwick back there as well certainly doesn’t help. Guys haven’t scored. Hank has been shaky. Team came out flat and looked like they didn’t care to play tonight, which falls directly on the head coach (who should’ve been fired a way long time ago.) Let’s see how they respond tomorrow. P.S. WHY IS MARCEL HOSSA STILL ON THIS TEAM WHILE DAWES IN ROTTING IN THE MINORS ONCE AGAIN?? HE BRINGS NOTHING TO THIS TEAM. FIRE RENNEY ASAP!

    20. czechthemout!!!!! on

      I wasn’t able to watch the game live because of a meeting in the city so i decided to tivo it.When i drive home it is through 31st by the garden.It was about 8:30pm and i saw rangers fans leaving the garden,i knew that it would not be a fun night watching the game on tivo.

      Now for some thoughts on the game.Basicaly,it is the same old story as last year,if Avery is not in the lineup and the king doesn’t stand on his head the team is in trouble.I know some of you don’t wan’t to admit it but we have a very,very mediocre coach who has no clue as to how to adjust during a game hwen things are not working.He also cannot figure out how to motivate his team to play with passion.In addition,he can’t figure out a way to put the many talented pieces at his disposel into a cohesive offensive and defensive team.He does not put the team into a position to win games with his mind boggling player decisions like playing Malik more than Staal who is now as per Dave Maloney not far from the best dman on the team.He has taken a talanted offensive player like Prucha and turned him into a nervous wreck every time he touches the puck.He is too passive and the team is very much a reflection of it’s coach.The new york rangers will never win the stanley cup as long as Tom Renney is their coach!

    21. czechthemout!!!!! on


      welcome aboard,i have been saying on this and other blogs that you can’t win when half of your forwards cannot score.This is still a game where you have to score more than the other team to win.You cannot only defend your way to a stanley cup.I find it amazing that the devils have now won 8 in a row with a fraction of the team that we have.The difference is that they appear to have a coach who took on some of the so called stars like elias and benched them when they refused to play the way he wanted and now they are in first place and have won eight games in a row.

    22. Doodie Machetto on

      CTO, I think that is the best post I’ve ever read from you. Your argument about Renney is supported with good examples, not only pointing out the bad (Malik), but pointing out the misuse of the good, and the ruining of Prucha.

      Not only that, but you opened with a good anecdote! that’s funny stuff man.

    23. Here’s a fun fact: the three teams that play in New York (state) are the only ones who don’t have a player with double-digit goals this season. http://sports.yahoo.com/nhl/recap?gid=2007120608

      It looks like the old scenario of not having Avery which is doing us in, but Hossa played a decent game anyway. I would now like to see him replace Hollweg on the fourth line after I personally have been giving Hollweg a chance. I hope we see Valiquette tomorrow just to let Henrik think about last night and cool off. At least we don’t have too many “Chicken Littles” in here tonight. A couple disgusting games in a row, but we know they can shake it off.

      Did you notice on last week’s _Inside the Rangers_ that Valiquette’s first name was spelled “Steven” instead of “Stephen”?

    24. Well I see that this is the first post of the ‘morning after’. That was tremendously dissapointing. So dissapointing that I don’t even feel like discussing it. “Did we play thursday?” is right. Let’s just put it all behind us and move on. Otherwise it’ll be a day full of bashing every guy on the team (with few exceptions).

      Is Peter Prucha (flucha) a 30-goal scorer, or a guy that scored 30 goals once?

      Atlanta is the home of the league’s leading goal scorer. But don’t worry, Malik will stop him. I don’t feel too good.

    25. czech all signs usually point to the coach. But he saved himself last season, and might again this season. The bar is a lot higher this year. He needs to fix his system, so the offense can perform rather than play scared from the outside. There is the distinct possibility that he’s reached his level, and hasn’t the experience & gut to take this team where they should be going. For everyone’s sake, hopefully he proves that wrong. But it’s not looking likely. He doesn’t coach for enough of the 60 minutes, so his team doesn’t always play for 60.

    26. Straka Drury Jagr
      Avery Gomez Shanahan
      Prucha Dubinsky Dawes
      Hossa Betts Orr

      Staal Rosi
      Tuts Girardi
      Mara Struds

      Callahan needs a reconditioning stint in Hartford, and Hollweg just needs to just riverdance until he can do something other than miss hits and open scoring chances on the fourth line.

    27. And not for nothing, besides 1 bad game and 1 so so game, Girardi looks like one of our best dmen. And it is good to see him putting up some numbers.

    28. I’m sick of tired of hearing about how Renney has so much faith in his 4th line to put them out there against anyone. Our 4th line is a joke and they have zero chance of providing any type of offense. The Blair Betts experiment isn’t working. He has to show that he can provide an ounce of offense or he has to be off the team. Same goes for Hollweg. He should be sent to hartford and Dawes should be brought back. Move Hossa down to the 4th and put Dawes back with Shanny and Gomez where he belongs.

    29. Malik is an absolute waste of a roster spot. I’d rather have Kasparaitis or any D-man in Hartford playing. I can’t believe this guy is in the NHL.

      It’s pretty clear to me that Marc Staal is already the best defenseman that we have. How can Renney and his staff not see this?

    30. Nasty – amen to Girardi. There is a lot of promise in the young defense. They hang in there, and to me at least, it just looks like they play harder than the O usually does. The O seems to ‘give up’ some nights.

      Rob – The last few seasons i’ve not seen the need for Betts either. But I see it more this season. Can’t really put my finger on it, he always skates hard and is always on top of the league in the blocked shots category. Its not easy. Too bad that doesn’t put pucks in the net, but compare that to say…the rest of the offense that doesn’t block shots OR put the puck in the net. At least you hear is name, right?

      I don’t know – I wanted to smash something so bad last night. We need to get back out there .. QUICK

    31. what is also puzzling to me is how everyone looks immediately to pass to Jagr even if he has a guy draped all over him. There are other options other than trying to get the puck to Jagr.

    32. I was at the game last night and this team has abandoned their game. They are no longer hustling, fore checking with any significance and do not hit anyone. They think they are playing POND hockey. Fancy passes that lead to turnovers. Like in pond hockey they think they can make the other team look like jackasses. For example, like when I was a kid playing hockey there was always one or two guys that would skate thru the whole team, do it on their own and score 10 goals a game. Every NYR team member is playing like that and all they are trying to do is make highlight reel passes and goals. They have no cohesiveness on the ice. LET’S GET BACK TO THE BASICS….Jesus

      MALIK is killing us. When Mara gets back I hope Renney plays Staal and Rozi together.

    33. Rob L: That’s been the problem since day 1. It was a good strategy in 05/06, when he had 54 goals, but he’s on pace for like 15 now… it’s embarrassing.

    34. Two terrible games in the row – at home!
      Finally, I’d not defend Malik anymore, he has to go. No doubt. Yesterday, he looked like playing tennis with his stick. I hope Mara will replace him tonight.
      Then Jagr played very poor in last three games, he’s no captain. Not at all.
      What is happening to Lundqvist recently? He’s allowed tons of lousy goals in past games.
      Then we have Hollweg – total waste of space. TOTAL. He was so excited about that “Rock Band” game during his interview with Al. I wish he’d be so excited when hit somebody. In terms of offensive skills he’s null, zero. I’d trade him asap.
      How is that possible that we allowed 10 goals with not-so-high-flying teams? And again, WHERE IS OUR SCORING DEPARTMENT?
      Remember last year’s December slide?

    35. I have to disagree with some of you regarding Betts. He does exactly what is expected of a 4th liner. He blocks a lot of shots, leads the team and is tops in the league in that category come year end. He fore-checks and hits people to create turnovers in the offensive zone. Unfortunately he has no one playing with him to take advantage of those turnovers. He is dominant on face offs and is the best PK killer on the team. He does not score much but that is not his job. He does exactly what Renney expects from a 4th liner. Renney does not have him on the team to score goals.

      Can someone explain to me why the Rangers never have a big strong forward that can score goals and stand in front of the net and cause problems?

    36. Richard – the Leafs did the pond hockey thing to us on that one 3on2 last night. That was nice crisp passing that totally burned us.

      also – you’re 110% right on the reason that renney has betts out there. and he does EXACTLY whats expected of him. Probably moreso than anyone else on the team plays there role. In that respect so does Orr. After is fight is when we scored our 2. Unless I had more sangria than I thought. Win or lose that fight…didn’t matter.

    37. I was at the game as well. I wanted to throw up all over myself and the people sitting around me. It was awful to watch. I knew from the first two minutes in to the second period that this was going to be a real stinker. I agree Malik must go. I felt bad for the guy for a while, but jesus, send him away. We were much better with Staal on the top unit and mara with struds. I was unlucky enough to go to the last two games. Awful. I don’t know what else more to say. The team has abandoned their game that was winning. Putting bodies and pucks to the net, it worked. I can’t understand why they just can’t do it every night. Doesn’t make any sense.

    38. You know your team is in trouble when your top 10 goal producers are comprised of 3 Defensmen(3,6,7) and Dawes(8) who is now in Hartford.

    39. I say trade Montoya, Prucha, Hossa, Malik, and a pick for Lecavalier and Ranger. I know it would never happen, but fug it, I wish it would.

    40. I am just an angry bitter man today. Maybe a trade wouldn’t fix a damn thing. But who knows. This team can be so damn good when it keeps it simple.

    41. That is a good trade. We could throw in one more Dman or forward and make up for it with what we have in youth.

    42. That is what I was thinking. But then what. Do we have the money to absorb that? And also, where do we put Dubi?

    43. Straka Lecavalier Jagr
      Drury Gomez Shanahan
      Dawes Dubi Avery
      Callahan Betts Orr

      Rosi Staal
      Tuts Girardi
      Ranger Mara

      ha, keep dreaming

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