Now your turn


Update, 5:58 p.m.: John Dellapina “reports from the Great Northwest”: that Stephen Valiquette gets the nod tonight against the Canucks.

The blog’s all-powerful supercomputer — otherwise known as my Mac laptop with coffee spilled in the keyboard — says the Rangers will officially be at the halfway point of the season when they wrap things up tonight in Vancouver tonight.

With that in mind, here comes a simple request: grade the team.

You can do it by position (forwards, defense, goalie, coaches) or by individual players. With the latter I suggest grading on a curve.

For instance, I would probably grade Blair Betts with two goals higher than Jaromir Jagr with 11 simply because one of those players has been below his standard as one of the greatest players in the game and the other has been decent while being, well, Blair Betts.

Let’s try to keep it civil, if that’s possible, and we’ll see what results are yielded.

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  1. I’m not good at this sort of thing, so I’ll pass. All I’ll say is the 2nd line has been best this season, follwed by 4th, 1st, 3rd, based on expectations. The 1st line is coming around, though.

    Apparantly, on Team 1040 radio in Canada, they say Vally is starting tonight:

  2. Jagr – D (looks so disinterested – not a Captain)
    Gomez B+ (best forward on team right now)
    Drury B- (still waiting for him to show his stuff)
    Hossa F (UGH!)
    Shanahan B (not bad for an old guy)
    Straka incomplete (B when he’s in lineup)
    Avery incomplete (A when he’s in lineup)
    Dubinsky B- (will be a solid NHL player)
    Callahan D (needs to go to Hartford to regain confidence)
    Betts C+ (can’t put the puck in the ocean)
    Prucha C- (see Betts; human pinball/punching bag)
    Hollweg C- (next year somewhere else please)
    Orr B- (solely based on his toughness)
    Staal B+ (going to be a good one)
    Girardi A- (is already a good one)
    Rozsival B (shoot the puck Mikey!!)
    Malik F- (please trade or cut him….now!)
    Strudwick C- (why is he on any NHL team?)
    Mara C (temporarily holding the job for someone else)
    Tyutin B (OK D-man should get tougher)
    Lundqvist A (steps away from the next Brodeur?)
    Valiquette B (a good soldier)

  3. Team: B-

    Goaltending: B
    (let’s face it, henrik lundqvist is still a top 3-5 goalie in this league regardless of his recent tendencies to lose focus. and while he may not be of the caliber of weekes, valiquette has done his job)

    Defense: B+
    (this would be an A without the turnovers of malik. fedor tyutin and daniel girardi continue to progress, roszival is having a career year, and the emergence of staal as a top two defender has been integral)

    Forwards: C+
    (defensively, they have been great. but at the end of the day, defensive abilities aren’t going to justify the cap hit petr prucha will be taking for the next three years. the focus on prucha here is simply a microcosm of the entire offense. while he, and the offense, is coming around, it seemed like the start to the season left a lot to be desired in terms of pressure and second chances. there wasn’t enough chemistry, yeah, but in reality we weren’t going to the net. with our top forwards starting to gel, i believe this grade will be higher at season’s end.)

    Coaching: B
    (i’m not a renney hater, i actually believe that his job has been tougher than ever this year – to take two star caliber players and insert them into this system is no easy task – and that on most nights, he’s got his team playing respectably in their own zone. if the forwards are getting paid to score and they’re not scoring, is it a product of the staff? maybe. but my guess is that, like scotty bowman said, the training camp process would go on longer than the seasons beginning. give them a break, they do a fantastic job)

    these aren’t all the players, just a few-

    Exceeded expections:
    Marc Staal
    Brandon Dubinsky
    Michael Roszival
    Fedor Tyutin

    Met expectations:
    Dan Girardi
    Marek Malik (what can I say)
    Henrik Lundqvist
    Brendan Shanahan
    Martin Straka
    Scott Gomez

    Failed to meet expectations:
    Jaromir Jagr
    Petr Prucha
    Ryan Hollweg

  4. Whoops! How could I forget to grade:

    Renney B- (can’t figure out how to use guys correctly)
    Slats C+ (leaving us without much toughness; make a deal)
    Sam Rosen C+ (losing it – no longer an elite NHL announcer)
    MSG Zamboni drivers A (nice job)
    The Dolan family F- (please sell and retire far away to Arizona)

  5. Overall I’ll give the team as a whole a C+. We all have such high hopes for this team but the chemistry has taken longer to form. It seems now the first line is finally clicking and the other lines are following suit.

    1st line- F so far I expect so much more though and can see Scotty’s wheels starting to move like they did in Jersey. If Jagr will drive to the net a little more rather than playing on the wall all the time they will be looking good quick.

    2nd line- Right now they are looking like a C but now that Avery is healthy and Drury is playing with him and Shanny steadily they are working there way quick to an A.

    3rd line- To many different players on it so far to say but i’ll give them the benefit and say C. Dubi was awesome last night and it was a game to build on.

    4th line- A++ I know I’m crazy right but they have worked harder than anyone to do there job. That one game in the press box has given Hollweg new life and Betts as always is one of the most reliable guys on the ice. None of them score but they have been pretty good shutting down other teams best lines.

    D1- B+ – Rozi needs to shoot obviously and I’d like to see Stall move the puck up ice a little more.

    D2- Girardi get A+, but Toots looks a little lost lately he needs something to get him going again. overall they get an A- as a pair.

    D3- I like Mara what can I say Strudwick while not a great defensemen seems to add something to the team as a whole when he’s there, Malik… Overall they are a C-.

    Hanks getting a B. I’ve found him to be a little inconsistent and I’ve said it before I think he’s gotten a little to big for his britches. I think he’s coming back down to earth again and maybe if they get the contract done this month we will get our King back in the right frame of mind, it’s stupid to say but I think he wants so bad to be a Ranger that it might be something thats making him lose focus. I really love this guy and he coudln’t have been any nicer when i met him. Like Avery they are the type of players meant to be in NY.

    Vally gets a B+ he’s been reliable.

  6. You are asking the impossible. NEW YORK fans cannot step back and be objective enough to “grade” the team. They see things in an odd sort of way. They are not patient. Some people are willing to write off a player or team and it’s not even the halfway point. People say Drury was a mistake after a couple of months because he isn’t scoring like a madman. They have no concept of how much he truly does on the ice.

    And my biggest pet peeve as a diehard Rangers fan is having to go to the Garden and here 25 Potvin chants in a game not involving the Isles. It’s silly. One a game people. More when it’s the Isles. But sitting there with the Rangers down 1 with 2 minutes to go, and people are worried about whistling and chanting? I have not gone to one game this season (after going to at least 20 last 2 seasons) because it’s too frustrating.

    Rather than player by player, I give the team a B. They could be better, they could be worse. I think they will get it together in the 2nd half.

  7. Here is thing about bringing up something like this!!!

    You are asking the impossible. NEW YORK fans cannot step back and be objective enough to “grade” the team. They see things in an odd sort of way. They are not patient. Some people are willing to write off a player or team and it’s not even the halfway point. People say Drury was a mistake after a couple of months because he isn’t scoring like a madman. They have no concept of how much he truly does on the ice.

    And my biggest pet peeve as a diehard Rangers fan is having to go to the Garden and here 25 Potvin chants in a game not involving the Isles. It’s silly. One a game people. More when it’s the Isles. But sitting there with the Rangers down 1 with 2 minutes to go, and people are worried about whistling and chanting? I have not gone to one game this season (after going to at least 20 last 2 seasons) because it’s too frustrating.

    Rather than player by player, I give the team a B. They could be better, they could be worse. I think they will get it together in the 2nd half.

  8. Betts a C+?? He’s not a scorer. He’s a 4th line center, and does the job better than anyone we could insert. Grade him on his shot blocking, defense, and penalty killing, but don’t grade a role player based on his # of goals. Thats not what we signed him for.

  9. Forget the team (B-):

    Sam Weinman: A-; Conceive in November, have child in off-season. Great blog, good leadership, sometimes relies(with his peers) too much on MSG p.r. when in a time crunch leading to same story in every publication in town at same time.

    Josh Thompson: A; When he plays, he performs. Love the in-game updates and the fan’s enthusiasm for the irrelevant.

  10. Jagr C- I believe he still stirs the drink
    Gomez B- Slow start hurts his grade
    Drury C- 10 Million Dollars for what?
    Hossa F
    Shanahan B – skills diminishing but so smart. Still an asset
    Straka B-
    Avery C+ – stay healthy, hit some open nets
    Dubinsky B-
    Callahan F Go to Hartford
    Betts C Does what is expected of him – check
    Prucha D-
    Hollweg F Doesn’t even check anymore
    Orr B Has not hurt the team with increased minutes
    Staal B+ hopefully won’t hit the wall
    Girardi A
    Rozsival B- Getting goals but getting burned
    Malik D needs to play with Rosival
    Strudwick B Is great as a spot player
    Mara C average, average, average
    Tyutin B Solid
    Lundqvist A- Bad game vs. Calgary unfortunately not rare the past month
    Valiquette B a huge suprise … don’t keep playing him he will get exposed; cost his team at least a point last time he played.

  11. Can’t believe Valiquette is playing. I would want Henrik right back out there after yesterday’s bad game. Guess Renney doesn’t want too many points on this road trip.

  12. How did Valiquette cost the team a point last time he played? They won 6-1 in Toronto. I think this is too early to go back to him, but maybe Renney thinks Henrik against Edmonton will practically guarantee a win.

  13. Koffy,

    I can’t agree with you on that one. Hank is great, but he’s been making too many mental errors and allowing a soft goal almost every other game or so. A sit-down to rest AND realize that the media proclaiming you Martin Brodeur doesn’t necessarily make it so is a good thing. Hopefully, he’ll come back strong and more solid than ever.

    Not to put too fine a point on one game off.

  14. Jagr C-(still not convinced he’s 100%)
    Gomez B+ (best forward on team right now)
    Drury B- (best faceoff guy we have lately)
    Hossa D (Why is he being given any more time here)
    Shanahan B (tracking for 30 goals- worth $5 million?)
    Straka A- (Passes up to many shots)
    Avery B+ (doesn’t score near enough goals to get an A, eh)
    Dubinsky B- (let the kids play together)
    Callahan C (get confidence back with consistant linemates)
    Betts B- (the new Jed on the PK)
    Prucha C- (keep the kid on the powerplay)
    Hollweg C- (checking good/no scoring bad)
    Orr C- (toughness/needs to score)
    Staal B+ (consistantly good for young age)
    Girardi B+( ditto)
    Rozsival B- (shoot more, pass less)
    Malik D (way too slow, needs to go)
    Strudwick C(intangible utility)
    Mara C+(paid too much to be worse then rookies)
    Tyutin B+ (Keep those bodies flying Fedor!)
    Lundqvist A- (needs to learn to stay humble and in the net)
    Valiquette B+ (too bad they wasted all that money on Weekes)

    Renney A-(Best Ranger coach since Shero)
    Pelino/Pearn A- (they are Renney’s right and left hand)
    Slats C+(was a fool to let Donny walk))
    Sam Rosen A (love Johnny but Giannone not ready yet)
    Michelletti C-(turns out Dave would have been better choice)MSG Zamboni drivers A (Jack Durkin is a master)

    MSG Subscriber and Events Team A+ (they do a geat job with and for the fans and get little credit)

    The Dolan family D- (end the Isiah misery because it reflects badly on the real franchise that occupies the Garden.

  15. I wonder if we could start a “Rangers Fan Against Isiah” group? I mean, come on already…is he crazy or just wildly incompetent?

  16. Jagr: C- “As he goes, we go”
    Gomez: B+ Skating well, only player that consistantly creates
    Drury: B- Quiet points wise, but shifted around a lot
    Shanny: B+ Consistant
    Stratka: D Not skating as well, not shooting, turning the puck over
    Avery: B Obvious energizer but can’t stay healthy
    Rozsival: Shoot more! Hes shooting well, sky is the limit if he’ll just pull the trigger
    Girardi: A Instictive, gritty, smart, consistant…bright future
    Staal: B Kinks to work out, but on his way to greatness
    Prucha: D I Feel bad for all the people who bought Prucha Jerseys two years ago
    Callahan: F Either not NHL ready, or not NHL material
    Dubinsky: B- Very erratic, some nights great, others not so
    Hossa: D
    Orr: B
    Hollweg: B
    Betts: A Collectively the 4th line has been great. Wouldn’t mind a little more scoring, but Betts has been outstanding and Orr and Hollweg set the pace and provide needed energy.

    Tyuten: B+
    Malik: D…Leave already
    Mara C…not enough production for his salary
    Strudwick: B Not talented but plays hard

    Lundy: B+ Started great, a few bumps…maybe he actually DOES need rest every once in awhile

    Valiquette: B Still have a chance when hes in net, doesn’t complain

    Coaching Staff: B please do something about this atrocious looking powerplay

  17. Overall team C. Renney and co. are doing well trying to make a team out of all the newcomers.

    A – Valliquette – When called upon has given Hank a rest and at the same time won the game or kept the team in a position to win. Can’t blame 1 loss on him (hopefully not tonight).

    Gomez – Trying to fit in and doin fine. Tough job having Jagr on your line. Shows, speed and is setting people up. That’s why he’s here right?

    Staal – Made the team… then played better every day… now a top pair D-man and can kill penalties, makes outlet passes and can even rush the puck (not effectively… yet).

    Lundqvist – Has faltered of late but has been the reason this team is even on the radar screen still. If the team plays solid in front of him… a shutout is a very real possibility (except in Tampa lol).

    Shanny – The guys still scores, is a leader, plays both PK and PP. Everything I would have expected from one of the classiest guys in the lockeroom and one of the greatest ever, even late into his career.

    B – Drury – Expected more but doing the little things, and has been killer at faceoffs. Wish he would make those around him better by setting them up once in a while. (though that may be more them not getting open)

    Avery – When he’s in the lineup… nobody does his job better than he does. Needs to be smarter and walk away from time to time though, when the time is right. I’d like to see a bit more scoring though.

    Betts – Does the job that is asked of him and usually does it well.

    Girardi and Tyutin – Again solid but have times where they look outmatched and even slow in their own end.

    Dubinsky – For a young guy I think he just needs time. Seemed comfy with Jagr even. Good size, good speed… needs to finish or pass more effectively.

    C – Roszival – Lots of goals but shaky on D at times. Shoot more!

    Mara – I don’t know what to think of this guy except I’d like to see him shoot more and stand up at the blueline more.

    Straka – Has been injured but seems to make some odd choices sometimes and doesn’t hit the net as much as I know he can.

    D – Prucha, Callahan, Hossa, Orr, Hollweg. I expect more scoring from the first 3… any scoring really. They all work hard, skate hard and I can tell they care at least, but that doesn’t cut it at this level. You’re here to put the puck in the net… end of story. As for the other two… Orr gets his arse handed to him way too often and Hollweg needs to direct his energy a bit more… it looks too erratic.

    F – Malik – What can I say. I won’t boo my favorite team or its players but he’s not making smart decisions, is too slow, doesn’t use his size, and makes the second worse mistake you can make in sports frequently (The worst mistake is rushing and feeling like you don’t have enough time… second worse is taking too much time).

    Sorry. But Jagr gets the only F besides Malik. He’s playing well below where anyone could have imagined and at the same time forcing others to do things differnetly, affecting their game/grades. Sam, I’m grading on a curve here and failing Jagr. I hate to do it but I have to. Everyone knows that along with Hank it’s up to this guy to decide (and lead) this team’s fate. If his stats this season were just average… where would we be?

    Special teams:

    POWERPLAY (F-) If we had a middle of the pack PP our record would be well above .500

    PENALTY KILL (A-) Doing a great job… keep up the good work!!!

    A special A+ goes to Dawes for not only scoring a few, but driving back and forth so much… taking one for the team and understanding that it’s due to the cap… not the fact that coaches (or fans) don’t want him here.

  18. Doodie Machetto on

    Man, I wish I had time to do this. I’ll get to it tomorrow for sure.

    Briefly, the MVPs:

    Defense: Girardi
    Offense: Gomez
    Goaltending: Lundqvist
    Coaching: Whoever coaches the PK (unless he also coaches the PP)
    Managing: Don Maloney, runner up to Slats for drafting Cherepanov

    Overall: Lundqvist (even though we’ve been winning recently without him being unreal, we’d be below .500 without the way he carried us early in the season)

  19. Jagr- C hopefully plays better now with gomez
    Gomez- B+ Will probably be an A by the end of year
    Straka- C+ missed time needs to shoot more
    Shanahan- B rough start early season, but now playing well
    Avery- B- missed 20+ games, but is heart of the team
    Drury- C+ Expected more goals, but the clutchness is still there.
    Prucha- C Needs more playing time. Loads of talent
    Callahan- D Missed time, but still can’t find the net
    Dubinsky- B+ played well all year, last night best game of the season.
    Betts- B good 4th line center gets the job done
    Hollweg/Orr- D+ we just need one of these guys
    Hossa- D can never find net except shootouts good on the pk
    Rosival- A- Please shoot more
    Malik- F Needs to go
    Mara- C+ Can’t play with Malik, played well with Staal
    Strudwick- C+ Won a game in ot would rathe rsee him then Malik.
    Tyutin/Girardi- A graded as a pair love these 2 , and hope to see them together for a long time.
    Staal- B- Has his lapses. but still has been very good as rookie.
    Lundqvist- B+ Lights out early on has let in some softies, but still goaltender for next 8-10 years hopefully.
    Valiquette- A No one expected much played great in games vs the Leafs, had 1 bad game vs coyotes, but whole team was awful.

  20. I’ll pass on the grading.

    Zipay is either paranoid or maybe he knows something. He thinks (and I agree) that there is more to Vally starting tonight than meets the eye. I guess it could be a number of things. Injury, fatigue, flu, or could it possibly be a motivational seat on the bench.

    Either way – Go gett’em Vally. And good luck, cause you’ll need it.

  21. Renney = F for friggin moron

    the fans were right about malik, he wasn’t

    he was slow to give major roles to the young players

    the fans were right about Henrik, he wanted Weekes until reality set in.

    the fans were right about Bozo

    krog, isbister, hossa

    and on and on

    and a losing record without Avery

    renney is too busy studying his funk & wagnalls and brown-nosing jagr to see the light.

    and remember, in the players’ poll, he got ZERO votes from the players around the league. that says it all.

  22. czechthemout!!!!! on

    Jagr-C- very disapointing season so far.Looks like he’s running out of steam.Is also a questionable leader.His complaining about how people should play HIS game is disgracefull.I thought he was part of a team.

    Gomez-B+ Has stepped it up big time.Is playing like a true number two and even a borderline number one center.I expect 20 goals 60-70 assts

    Straka-A- comes to play every night!His best buddy can learn from him about what it takes to be part of a team.He never complains about who he plays with and gives 100% every

    Shanny-B clearly looks like he lost more than a step and relies more on his savvy and expierience to be effective.

    Drury-C+ has been better latetly.Does alot of little things well.Still waiting for him to start producing more like a second line center should.Hard to justify a 7mil contract for what he’s currently done.If we make the playoffs,maybe he’ll shine and justify his big contract.

    Avery-A- In my opinion,the co mvp of the team.There is no denying his impact when he’s in the lineup.This team wins 60+ percent of the games he’s in.

    Prucha-D+ Still looking to find his game.I blame Renney for his decline this year.He has not played enough on the powerplay and in general his ice time is too low.This guy has scored 53goals in two seasons and is now a nervous wreck every time he’s in position to score a goal thinking his playing time will suffer if he misses a single chance.

    Dubinsky-B His play has progressed quite nicely dispite some of the impatience showed by some in this blog.He has shown the most ability and skill of any forwrd on this team since Alex Kovalev.I believe that he is a future all around big time player and a solid 30goal 50 assist man.He will finish strong this year and would benefit if renney would stop putting different people on his line constantly.I do appreciate the fact that Renney is playing him and showing patience,he will be rewarded.

    Hollweg-D+ does one thing and one thing only and that’s hitting.does not do it consistantly enough.Hands of stone,would be gone if it were up to me.Brings very little to the table as far as offense.

    Betts-A+ Does what he does very well and I give him full marks for it.Hustles every shift and sacrifices his body to block shots.Wish he’d add ten goals a year to his game.Also great penalty killer.

    Orr-C- One dimensional player who does not even win most of his fights.Brings nothing else to the table.

    Callahan-INC coming off of injury,should be allowed to find his game based on the form he showed last year.Does not get enough ice time and in my opinion has earned the benefit of the doubt.

    Dawes-B showed he has a good offensive game.Should be playing with the big club,has nothing to learn in the ahl scoring 2 points a game on most nights.

    Hossa-FF- a complete waste who has been given more rope than any player i’ve seen in my 32 years of watching the rangers.Has no offensive game and a very overrated defensive game.Players like him belong on the scrap heap.A classic first round BUST!!!

    Rozy-B- despite better offensive numbers,his overall game has been inconsistant and somehwat disapointing.Lets hope he has a better second half,shoots the puck more and stops deffering to Jagr every single time.

    Staal-B+ Makes some rookie mistakes but no more so than some of the vets who are not rookies.Is a future star and a real solid number two.Reminds me of a young chris pronger only he is better at the same point in his career.

    Girardi-A The most consistant defenseman on the team and a real surprise is his offensive game with seven goals.

    Tyutin-B+ Less consistant than his partner but non the less real solid and the most physical dman on the team.Thought he had more offense to his game.

    Mara-C+ Adaquate is about the best that can be said about him.Is overpaid and does not have enough offense relative to his ability and shot.Will and can be easily replaced.

    Malik-F The human pylon is the most overrated grossly overpaid player in the nhl.A slow skating,non hitting mistake prone disater waiting to happen every time he’s on the ice.He makes willie Huber seem like a norris trophy winner.

    Strudwick-C Not an everyday player.Is very game,hustles and sticks up for his teamates better than almost anyone on the team.His ability is however an F.His heart is and B.

    Tom Renney-B- The players to a man apparently like him but I don’t see that translated on the ice.He cannot get them to play with passion unless avery is in the lineup and that is troubling to me.The record of the team this year is the same as last year at this point,that to me is stagnation with a team on paper that is better than they are showing on the ice.I do not believe that Renney is a good in game coach as evidenced by his failure to make adjustments during games.Until proven otherwise wich for me is at least an appearence in the semi finals,I am not a believer that his coaching can get this team to the next level.I hope however that I’m wrong.

    The King-A+ The co mvp of the team with Avery.He has Kept us in many games this season and stolen others for us.He like many other elite goalies will go through a spell when his level of play drops somewhat.However his 80% is better than 90% of the rest of the goalies in the league.A stanley cup quality goalie in my opinion.

    Valliquette-B does well when called upon.I doubt he could take us anywhere should the king get hurt though.

    Glenn Sather-B good off season on paper.needs to upgrade our defense badly.Let’s hope he doesn’t make any foolish trades for over the hill names like Aam Foote.A team with Malik,Strudwick,and Mara cannot be taken seriously as a stanley cup contender.

  23. Here are my grades:

    Coaching- 3 astronauts

    Forwards- 17 pumpkins

    Defense- 7 (on a scale of 1 to Taye Diggs)

    Power Play- 49 burnt marshmallows

    Penalty Kill- 2 and a half Mr. Rohners

    Overall performance- 98 / 118 (With a 3% curve)


  24. graves9 – You stated on the last entry that you think the Oilers will get the #1 draft pick. Too bad for them that pick goes to Anaheim because of signing RFA Dustin Penner. I have to disagree with your assessment of Lowe, however. A few good prospects are coming up, and he made great trades of Pronger and Smyth the last couple seasons. He;s just having problems getting UFAs to sign there, like Nylander.

    Do we get to see Brad Isbister tonight or has he already been benched or sent to the AHL?

  25. Although, here’s a fun stat – The Oilers have the Ducks’ first-round pick this summer from the Pronger trade. Too bad they couldn’t negotiate to give that one back in the Penner deal, but Burke was smart enough to know that the Oilers would finish lower in the standings this season.

  26. Team C-
    Coach Renney C-
    Jagr D
    Gomez B
    Straka B
    Shanahan C
    Drury B
    Avery B
    Callahan Incomplete
    Dubinsky C+
    Hossa C-
    Prucha C-
    Hollweg B+
    Betts A
    Orr B-
    Roszival B-
    Staal B-
    Tyutin B
    Girardi B
    Mara C
    Strudwick C+
    Malik C-
    Lundquist B+
    Valiquette B+

    Comments: Can someone tell Jagr that he has to lose a few pounds to get an extra step or two. He looks like he’s skating in mud. Also, while Shanahan seems a bit more interested than Jagr, he avoids the tough patches in the rink ever since the Knuble collision.

    If these two guys continue to get all the offensive situation reps, and continue to play at their existing sub par level, the Team will be lucky to make the playoffs.

  27. According to Blueshirt Bulletin Shanahan is out of the line up tonight with a stiff neck and back, Prucha will take his place on the second line.

  28. Reading over the grades so far, it’s interesting to note that Straka seems to have the most flactuation. This is probably because of his injury, but when he is healthy he is a very capable player. I also think this is different people’s views on how much he passes the puck. For example, he surely made a great pass to Jagr last night, but he was on a friggin breakaway, so I say that was a bad choice. His play on defense, PK, and PP point justifies a high grade overall, in my opinion.

  29. I give the entire team an A+
    Why ?
    Because I’m a Ranger fan & my team is better then any other team.
    Wanna fight ???

  30. A+ – Lundqvist, Betts
    A – Gomez
    Tyutin, Girardi – B+
    Jagr, Shanny, Straka – B
    Mara, Rozsival, Staal – B
    Avery – C+
    Hollweg, Orr, Prucha – C
    Hossa – D
    Malik – F, 0%, DO NOT PASS GO

  31. My God, some of these are the longest post in internet history !
    Does any one work besides me ( & Sam of coarse)

  32. Avery Man Crush on

    Hollweg setting the tone. With no Shanny lets hope dubie and prucha and keep it going and pick up some of the slack

  33. pros:
    avery, lundy, defensive scoring, gomez

    defensemen on the defense, jagr, drury, third and fourth line production, renney

  34. Malik tonight, yeah sharp, like the odor of my farts….

    A: Hank, PK, Straka, Betts, Shanny, Girardi, Team blocking shots, Defensive zone positioning

    B: Vally, Drury, Gomer, Orr, Tyutin, Staal, Avery, Dubi

    C: Hollweg, Struds, Jagr, Coaches, Prucha, Dawes, Team forecheck (good when they want, sucks when they lazy)

    D: Mara, Cally, Hossa, Overall toughness, Leadership (Jags, are you gonna lead or are you gonna puss out? Why don’t you bring 100% every night?)

    F: Malik, PP, The team taking the body in the D zone in front of the net

  35. The Rangers are playing desperate hockey tonight. They only have 5 or 6 good shots out of 20 plus though. Why do they consistently shoot high? It would make a great deal of sense if Gomez,Drury,Straka would shoot along the ice and play for rebounds. Isn’t this point painfully obvious especially against great goaltending? Can Jagr skate to the front of the net? What is it going to take for Slats to find some players who will stand in front of the goalie? In traffic. If I were Betts, Hossa, Hollweg. Callahan, Orr, I would be planting myself in the slot because I would feel like I would be contributing something to the chance of scoring since these players cannot score anyway. at least I would be screening the goalie and possibly draw a penalty.

  36. New Newman

    That Sharp comment was sarcastic.

    I was referring to the opening of the game where he couldn’t keep the puck in the zone on a routine play.

  37. Who saw the answer to trivia and what the players were? I turned back too late. I think it’s three though – Linden, Zubov, Kovalev; I think I heard it was four last season, but Nedved is not in the NHL right now. It might be a Canuck I don’t know of though. I probably would not have remembered Linden was on the 1994 squad.

  38. I ‘ll tell you what. I give the 4th line an A+. A+ for being FABULOUS at killing precious time off the clock every night while the Rangers are behind on the scoreboard. A+++++++!!!

  39. Almost every night, the refs are making these phantom calls at crucial points of the game.
    Something needs to be done about these joker refs.

    Hossa can’t buy a goal for nothing.

  40. there’s that dumb shit Malik doing his thing again. taking a stupid lazy penalty, and giving them another goal. he is worse than garbage.

  41. hey guys…lets all chip in together and i think we can afford to pay the buy-out fee on Malik’s contract….

  42. Valli tried. Bad goal, but the team needs to bail him out.

    Malik must sit.

    And, once again, the PP is a toothless disgrace.


  43. So it’s hard to make this claim when the Rangers can’t score a goal, but I’m confident enough to say that Renney cost his team at least one point tonight.

    Lundqvist had better be hurt, or his decision to play Valiquette may be the worst decision I’ve ever seen him make. There was NO chance Valiquette would win this one for the Rangers, and when he booted the first goal, there was no one with half a brain who thought the Rangers had the slightest chance.

    Also, the fourth line was out at a crucial time late in the game. Less than five minutes to go, a 1-0 game, and three guys who simply CAN NOT score are out on the ice. Simply baffling.

    I’m excited for the Edmonton game so I can see Henrik let in 7 goals and the Rangers can lose 7-6.

    All the good, hard work from the 3 straight wins is completely thrown out the window because of awful goaltending both nights and the return of an impotent offense one night.

    It’s the media’s responsibility to start hammering Renney about his decisions. The fourth line debacle over the past 15 games should be their first target. No excuse whatsoever.

  44. yea i feel bad for vally…a few tough breaks…but last time i checked you cant win a game by scoring 0 goals

  45. enough is enough, im sick of hearing the rangers are playing good hockey but not getting the results, this league is about the results, at this point they will be lucky just to get in to the playoffs. i know its only the half point of the season but if some changes dont happen i dont see how they can be successful

  46. Yeah Jeff-

    I noticed too and was thinking what the heck, when the 4th line was out late in the 3rd.

    It was mind boggling.

    If you count overtime losses as real losses, this team is worse than a .500 team and that is sad. They actually have lost one more game than they won. Pathetic-

  47. Jeff – you’re right about renny but how the hell can you put any blame on valiquette?

    Henrik is human…and he’s slumping. And regardless of the fact that he is capable of starting 70 games, it doesn’t mean he sould.

    Even Luongo got off to a slow start at the beginning of the season…it happens


    Now i can’t wait to hear everyone say we need Montoya

  48. Luongo played pretty well……..but think its time the league starts measuring goalie pads again…….his waist and upper body is huge….granted he is big but come on now……anybody know why depietro had to change pads after the first???????????? great job by shick again……anyone remember his great call in ot on beukeboom vs pens in 92 to turn that series????

  49. Derf,

    I don’t blame Valiquette at all (aside from the first goal). I blame the Rangers cyborg coach for thinking that he should start a pretty mediocre backup against a much better team. Henrik was on two+ days rest, he can handle 2 games in 2 nights easily.

    Valiquette could have done his job in net against Edmonton if Henrik was exhausted from the two nights.

    It was a ridiculous, stupid decision. Of course, the media will gloss over it and say they “played a close game and just couldn’t get it done” and Renney will be praised for his “confidence” in the “high-engergy” fourth line.

    Micheletti made a apt comment about Mike Keenan last night. He plays his best players and expects them to make the difference. Renney, on the other hand, relies on his no-talent “checking line” to energize the team every other shift.

    Absolutely baffling decisions.

  50. Jeff

    I honestly think that Renney’s decision to sit Hank was more calculated. My theory is….

    In his mind, I don’t think he expected to beat Vancouver and Luongo even with Hank in net. So he figures, what the heck, we might as well get atleast one win out of this western trip and that would be almost a sure thing with Lundqvist against Edmonton; not Valiquette.

    I think that if that’s his logi, that’s messed up-

  51. Martin Gelinas–what are you thinking and Bret Hedican make 5 with linden, kovy and zubov the other three

  52. Maybe. You know Hank’s psyche is damaged after the Calgary loss, and a start tonight would have gone a long way in repairing that damage.

    The more I think about it, the more I’m sure that Henrik is injured in some way. There’s no other excuse for playing Vally tonight.

  53. Valiquette is not to blame for this loss at all, nor is Renney’s decision to sit Lundqvist. Lundy’s been off, Valli played well, the Rangers must be able to score and their whole team needs to be able to step up when Valli is in nets, especially the offensive leadership. If the PP had given Valli any help, the Rangers could have won this easily.

  54. And I don’t think Renney was giving up on a win by playing Valli. I don’t believe he does that and I do believe he expects his big players, like Keenan, to man up and win one in a spot like this, after a game like last night’s. They didn’t.

  55. im thinking the reason malik is playing so much now is so the rangers can showcase him to other teams, because the strudwick-mara combo worked much better this year. but it is most likely hurting his value

    who do you guys think will score first for the rangers, callahan, hossa, or sanguinetti? I know its a stupid question but at this point im getting a little scared.

  56. They’re in a different time zone in a rink they’ve rarely seen against a top 5 NHL goaltender.

    Vally is a coin flip in nets. He’s showed solid goaltending and has looked weak at times, especially on rebound control.

    All in all, if I was an objective betting man, knowing who was starting in net and sans Shanny, I would have gone Vancouver. Renney knew the odds were stacked against him.

  57. “who do you guys think will score first for the rangers, callahan, hossa, or sanguinetti? I know its a stupid question but at this point im getting a little scared.”

    Ha ha ha!!! Good one! I like that.

    I assume, after the Canadian trip Sather will send Callahan for the long awaited and well deserved “conditioning” to Hartford. Hossa & Malik (is it last season?) HAVE TO GO! I don’t care where, just do it fast, they just take the cap space.

    And suddenly (I’d never expect it) we have TWO EVEN GOALIES!!! VALLY & HANK, HANK & VALLY!!! Almost like Tango & Cash!!! :) Two “flukes” and they’re even! Honestly, IMO Hank, with his recent play doesn’t deserve that long term contract. He HAS TO FOCUS MORE!!! Don’t tell me it’s defense, he was more focused in November, way more.

    But, you know I had some Guinesses and it’s Rangers, isn’t it? We all love it.

    Now, Bring the Cup!

  58. The Rangers are now in 3rd place in the division just 1 point ahead of the Isles with 2 more games played than the Isles.

    They also sit just 2 points on top of last place Philly with 4 more games played than Philly.

    Add it up:
    We are the WORST team in the division right now.

  59. Team C+
    Coach Renney B-
    Jagr F
    Gomez A
    Straka C
    Shanahan C
    Drury C
    Avery B
    Callahan D
    Dubinsky B+
    Hossa C
    Prucha C-
    Hollweg C
    Betts A
    Orr C-
    Roszival A
    Staal B-
    Tyutin A-
    Girardi B
    Mara C
    Strudwick C
    Malik F
    Lundquist B-
    Valiquette C+

  60. Vally a bad choice tonite. Team has to play perfect for him to win. Lunquist should have been in the net. One of my pet peeves with Renney is his form of punishment. Valiquette should have started in Edmonton. Ref sucked tonite. The team has played much worst in the past than in the last two games.

  61. Tonight was the epitome of why Hossa and Malik shouldn’t be on the team, but also why they are. They both played decent enough on the PK with no noticeable mistakes, each had one good scoring chance, with Malik creating his, but both took awful penalties. Granted, that third goal didn’t really mean anything, but the penalty was typical of Malik. Buying out either of them wouldn’t be so bad because they are each in the final year of their contracts anyway, but hopefully some other team sees value in them for a trade. I would much rather play any youngster over Malik right now and just use Strudwick if that fails.

    We ran into two top 5 goaltenders that were playing sharp and better than our top 5 goaltender. I’m still amazed we got three against Kipper. I will only be worried if we don’t beat Edmonton.

    The only reasoning I can see for using the fourth line in the last ten minutes of a game we are losing is their propensity to draw penalties because they surely can’t score a goal. They have one the whole season, right? (+ an empty netter) Tonight, maybe because of the back-to-back games, but I don’t think they are necessary that late to rest the other three lines. We had enough PK time that those players were rested anyway. It would really help if Hollweg could play there so that line would get less even strength time.

    I hate to say it because it scares me for next season, but we really missed Shanny tonight; Callahan was pretty invisible out there, and I thought they should have used Prucha on the second line instead.

    I hate these Western Conference trips, seems like the team always does badly, so I am hopeful a return to the East will get them rolling again. What happened to everyone’s glee during the three-game winning streak, which included Carolina and Montreal?

  62. Orr-Betts-Hollwegg.

    I think some of the fans on this site don’t understand the role the fourth line is called on to perform.

    They are not out there to be snipers!

    Orr has picked up his skating this year and the three have become a strong defensive tandem. When you take the body on the forecheck, good things happen.

    All 3 get an A for performing their duties as asked.


  64. Everybody needs to calm down. Once the rangers get back to playing teams in the eastern conference they will be fine. I stated the other day that the western conference teams are better than the eastern conference teams and the last time I check the rangers play in the eastern conference. The rangers will make the playoffs. The playoffs are a new season and anything could happen, so chill out.

  65. Jagr- F gives the puck away too much, has no impact
    Straka- B+ makes his linemates better
    Gomez- B+ better than I expected
    Avery- C injuries + hasn’t had same impact as last season
    Shanny- B+ slow start, should be captain
    Drury- C I think the pressure is lifting
    Dubinsky- C Solid with the puck
    Callahan- D hasn’t been same since knee
    Prucha- F no impact what so ever
    Betts- B+ solid defensive wall
    Hollweg- F do we really need him?
    Orr- D I guess every team still needs a goon
    Hossa- D Is his defense really that great?
    Girardi- B Maturing well
    Tutin- B gives what he is , no more, no less
    Rosie- B some mistakes on D, offensively solid
    Staal- B nice development
    Mara- c steady, not great
    Strudwick- C he is what he is
    Malik- is a grade really necessary?
    Henrik- C where’s our King?
    Valiquette- c alot better backup than what we’ve had
    Renny- D Does he have to play the 4th line that much? There’s 5 minutes to go last night, we need to score, and the 4th line is out there. I would love to see a speckle of Michel Bergeron’s anger come out of Renny when we get those horrible calls from the refs. Interference call on Orr last night for example.

    This team needs another small change like the Avery trade of last year. Nobody’s taking Malik. I would move Prucha/Hollweg/any defenseman, except Staal and Girardi, for equal talent or to give Dawes a slot just to change chemistry. Is Montoya worth anything any more?

  66. “It’s the media’s responsibility to start hammering Renney about his decisions.”

    Truth. Renney gets the lowest grade on the team, anyone that gives him anything higher than a D hasn’t a clue. It’s getting really really hard to watch this team, and it starts with Renney/Sather

  67. Renney- F-.
    Poor decision to start Valliquette against the best goalie in the league. Granted, he didn’t get any help, but that 1st goal was brutal.

    Now, somebody explain to me why with 5 minutes left down by 1 Renney sends out the 4th line for an offensive zone faceoff? I realize that they have played better defensively than I expected, but every shift that line gets is 45 seconds we aren’t going to score. That line gets way too much ice time for a team that needs to score more. Terrible coaching. Again.

  68. Another thing, Hossa takes two terrible offensive zone penalties, and doesn’t miss a shift. Malik adds his signature lazy hook penalty at the end which costs us a goal on the ensuing power play, and he’s right back out there. Where is the discipline? What sort of leverage do Malik and Hossa have on the coach?

  69. Guys, I don’t mean to change the subject because all of our concerns are legit. However, I’m really concerned about the state of the officiating. Horrific, woefull, pathetic are some of the words that come to mind, but they don’t even grasp the full extent of how bad it actually is. When a “guilty party” has to look around and ask if he committed the “infraction” something is seriously wrong.
    In the infamous “Winter Classic” a penalty was called at the end of the game, I believe against Buffalo, that I still can’t figure out. Again last night, Orr was on the offensive blue line and got called for interference. Again I’m baffled. This type of officiating is killing the game. Like you guys, I am a fan of the Rangers but also a fan of the game and I have actually turned games off this year because I just can’t watch.
    One of the calls on Hossa last night was just that…he looked around like WTF did I do?
    And Malik, he’s just guilty. Even at top speed he looks like he’s standing still…

  70. It is time to put Malik on waivers. The announcers said he plays better on the road than at home due to the boo-birds. It’s time to get rid of him and bring up someone else. Malik is one of the worst defensemen I have seen play for the Rangers in years. Adios Malik!

  71. Ruttster, my thoughts exactly. I am surprised to see so many down on the 4th line as they are doing exactly what they are supposed to do, which is wear down the other teams top lines with the spirit and toughness that they bring to every game. They have become the second whipping boys to Malik (which, poor kid, my heart really goes out to him, it must be awful to be in his situation). Anyway, if the first 3 lines were producing in the way that they were meant to, the 4th line would be heralded for their efforts and accomplishments. The random goal from them would only be a bonus. And speaking of goals, I have to defend Hollweg, its not from lack of trying that he has a goose egg, he has put quite a few shots on that narrowly missed and a few that the goalie just made a spectacular save. Recall the other night he was the only shot on goal for an entire 20 minutes. That right there really makes me wonder why the 4th line is taking such abuse from the fans. IMO, the 4th line is NOT the problem with this team, they are actually a silver lining, as last year we didnt even have a 4th line.

  72. I have no problem with the 4th line. They just have no business being out there for an ofensive zone faceoff after a TV timeout with 5 minutes to go in a game you are trailing by 1.

  73. Everyone voicing weak opinions about Vally…..Yes he let in a soft goal. But how many games have been won with 0 goals scored? A goalie should play to provide his team a chance to win last night. Vally did that.

    It is not his fault that none of our guys can put the puck in the net. There were countless legit chances that got us nothing.

    The game was not lost when Vally gave up the first goal. It was lost when we went 0 for 4 on the PP. It was lost when we gave Vancouver 7 PP chances. It was lost when we took 4 penalties in the final period while losing 1-0.

  74. That was awful English….A goalie should play to provide his team a chance to win every night.

  75. K – great post. The same fans that can’t stand the 4th line, or understand why they’re out there when they are, are usually the same fans that are first to blame the guys ‘playing within their roles’. And they usually ignore the fact that the scorers are not scoring. That 4th line is the only line that has carried the same energy for 2 1/2 seasons now. Something we talked about here a few days back. (that we were missing that intense play). Well, with the exception of avery, they’re the only ones that show any heart.

  76. I’ll give shanny a nod for showing heart too. Unfortunately a sore neck shows his age at the same time.

  77. I have no problem with the 4th line. They just have no business being out there for an ofensive zone faceoff after a TV timeout with 5 minutes to go in a game you are trailing by 1.

    exactly… eat shit and die Renney.

  78. I think starting Vally wasn’t an altogether bad idea. Wasn’t there mention about Hank’s father not doing well after surgery, perhaps the contract is on his mind, or maybe he needs that wake up call benching- so be it. He carried the team for long enough, he can have off games too.

    I have to go with the hope, *prayer*, that Malik is ONLY being played at this time because he is being *showcased* (God help that team, but please take him).

    Tonight wasn’t a horrible game, it was better than some of the other games the team (more Renney and Shanny) tried to play off as good games that didn’t go their way.

    I think Callahan should be sent back down to Hartford to get the confidence and goal scoring ability back. Perhaps bring Dawes or Moore up to play with Dubi (who has been recently impressive).

    I think Drury gets a bad rap with some of the grading. While he’s not a powerhouse scoring machine, he does all the little things that are admirable. However, our second line needs to be more a force.

  79. Hey Renney! Show some emotion on those phantom penalty calls and go ballistic once in a while. How about a tirade where you toss a few sticks and water bottles on the ice – you’ll feel better and so will we.

  80. UGH – I can’t even read some of these comments above. I can’t believe we all watch the same games or the same team. I can’t only think that it’s lack of experience, or youngsters on the other end of these comments. It’s the only acceptable excuse.

    I’m sure the handful of you that actually know what you’re talking about see it the same way.

    ’till next entry by the Great Weinman…


  82. Jagr C- (he’s played below average IMO)
    Gomez B+ (best playmaking forward on the club)
    Drury B- (great defensively, needs to be better offensively)
    Hossa D+ (good defensively most nights, a ghost on the off. end)
    Shanahan B+ (late run improved his grade)
    Straka inc. (B+ when he’s in lineup)
    Avery inc. (B+ when he’s in lineup)
    Dubinsky B- (better than most expected him to be)
    Callahan D (needs to go to Hartford to regain confidence)
    Betts C+ (good in his role as 4th liner, PKer)
    Prucha D (not getting enough out of him offensively)
    Hollweg C- (next year somewhere else please)
    Orr C (average solely based on his toughness)
    Staal B (grade slipped with struggles lately but going to be a good one)
    Girardi B (hard to ignore the -8 rating)
    Rozsival B (not worth the $5m he’s looking for despite the 10G, 15A)
    Malik D- (as close to an F as you can get without actually being one)
    Strudwick C (serves his purpose as a 7th dman, should be playing ahead of Malik)
    Mara C (keeping the job warm for Baranka or Sauer)
    Tyutin B- (he’s been ok lately, he was better in the first 20)
    Lundqvist A- (late struggles lower his grade)
    Valiquette B (better than expected)

    Renney B- (not getting enough out of the talent on this team) The Rangers should have a better record than 20-17-4 at the halfway point. We need to go about 24-13-4 in the second half to have a shot at the division. It’s doable but we need Jagr to be Jagr to get there.

  83. Why is it so difficult for these guys to grasp? Get traffic and guys to the front of the net, get pucks to the net. When the Rangers do that they win.

  84. I dont think anyone was picking the Rangers to make the playoffs at this time last year or to be a contender. It matters how you finish. We were a contender after the way we finished and if I’m not mistaken came pretty close to beating a Sabre team that dominated most of the year. So I’m not throwing in the towel, sorry.

  85. Again, I like I said yesterday, there are so many fairweather fans on this site. The rangers are a good team right now. Not a great team. That much is obvious. When the conference is separated by so few points it goes to show you that aside from Ottawa and Detroit, nobody is really safe. So buck up and deal with some bad games and make it to the playoffs. Any team can beat any team these days. Look at the teams above us and below us and look out West. Look at where most teams are. The bulk of the teams in the whole league have between 40 and 50 points. So the Rangers are not a horrible team and I do believe we will finish the year strong and make the playoffs.

  86. The Rangers got lost in the great Northwest ! Shame on them…..

    As I said they going to loose in Edmomton as well and will return empty handed from their road trip….

    It is just different..people in the US playing for money and over here they are playing for pride which is a big difference…

  87. I don’t really think anyone on the rangers is playing for money. That is a pretty bold statement. You look at Drury and Gomez who are both making a lot of money, but they are very competitive players. I don’t think it has to do with money. Why are you on this board anyway?

  88. Canuck,
    That is the most ridiculous statement I think I have ever read. All teams in Canada are a mix of Russians, Swedes, fins, American players and those same players are playing for money. The nhl isn’t a recreational sport it is a business. What the hell are you drinking?

  89. Cliff – Renney tried going ballistic once when Burns’s elbow on Prucha wasn’t called, and lo and behold, he got a penalty for it.

    New Newman – Good posts; we actually went 0-5 on the power play because the double-minor counts as two.

    I think the only bad call last last was on Orr for interference. If he didn’t stop at the blue line, it would have been offside. Since he was going forward and the Rangers had the puck, I can’t understand how he interfered with the other guy who should have been going the same way. If anything, Orr should have drawn a penalty. Props to the officials for getting together after Girardi was bleeding, down on the ice. I’m surprised a penalty wasn’t called on Valiquette’s follow-through because it looked about the same in real time, but clearly was a good non-call.

    I sensed a little tension between Rosen and Micheletti last night. Joe seemed to be laughing nervously after saying things Sam disagreed with. Also, Joe’s crush on Shanny showed too much when he talked about what might be different if Shanny was there on the power play. Meanwhile, Jagr’s unit was on the ice on the specific play he was talking about, so Shanny obviously wouldn’t have been there.

    I wonder what got Staal that one power play chance in place of Straka. That was a good move, and I was hoping Straka would replace Avery on the other unit, but no. I want Staal to replace Tyutin, but I’m not sure how comfortable he would be with Girardi. Alternatively, We could put Staal _and_ Rozsival on the second unit, moving Girardi to Jagr’s unit with Straka. That may force Rozsival to shoot the puck more. I’m still looking forward to Micheletti reading off that list of the leading scorers on defense and their shots on goal.

    I hope everyone has good comments on the Edmonton game because I won’t see it since I’ll be in Vermont this weekend.

  90. It’s funny how trolls don’t have the mental capacity to slow down and look at what they type, or spell easy words correctly. *Edmomton*

  91. Oh, TomG – good call on Blackhawks. That actually sounds sensible. At least Dustin Byfuglien is still healthy; he is a fantasy hockey gem this year, with a funny-looking, but easy-sounding name (Buff-lin).

  92. You guys don´t get it….People in Canada are realling caring about hockey and in the US they just see it as a business of some rich businessmen…

    If you have the choice to enjoy the real hockey, would you go to a game in Canada or in the US, where most of the arenas are half empty and in places like Vancouver, Calgary or Montreal are sold out for any game….

    MSG is only on paper sold out for every game and the majority of people is just looking for a show instead of a real good hockey team….

  93. “I don’t really think anyone on the rangers is playing for money. That is a pretty bold statement. You look at Drury and Gomez who are both making a lot of money, but they are very competitive players. I don’t think it has to do with money.”

    Dude… playing in NY always has something to do with money.

  94. “MSG is only on paper sold out for every game and the majority of people is just looking for a show instead of a real good hockey team”

    Sadly, I find a lot of truth to this.

  95. Thank you are the only one who got it….

    Those idiots over here don´t know what does it mean to have a real hockey game….

    How can you beat a rivalry like Oilers-Flames or Leafs and Flames…

    I mean Rangers-Islanders is just kindergarten….

  96. Playing for money and not caring if they win or lose are two entirely different things. And although Gomez and Drury are making a lot of money, I think they care very much whether they win or lose. The statement really had no bearing on anything being discussed today.

  97. Hey, just got mail from Sam. Seems “little” William popped out in the last 24hrs or so. So there may not be much activity from him for a bit.

  98. Rangers-Islanders is just Kindergarten? Hilarious. Did you watch them play each other over the years? Did you watch the games they played at the end of last year when both teams were busting their asses to make the playoffs? Get a grip.

  99. Canuck,

    Why don’t you take a long walk off of a short pier and go to a canucks blog. What is your point in coming in here to just stir shit up? I am seriously asking you that.

    Congrats Sam.

    Best wishes.

  100. HAHA – thanks for asking. Just a little fed up with some of the ridiculous posts today. (and finally a little busy at work today).

    I understand that this is a platform to voice opinions for all levels of knowledge of the game. More specifically, the Rangers. But the repeated ignorance wears on my patience sometimes. The last thing I need is a blog to frustrate me. I’ll leave that to the team itself!

    Other than that, a lot of the responses I would have had to some of the comments above have been stated in other words. Thanks to Spiderpig & nasty1 amongst others.

    I’m only grading 1 person. Renney gets an A.
    Here’s why…any coach that can go this long without telling that friggin crybaby jagr to shut up and play hockey or go back to the Czech Rep. and take over his fathers company, surely deserves a high mark. I’m a HUGE supporter of Tom in other ways, and I can identify when mistakes are made…but so does he. And 99.9% of the time they don’t happen twice.

    And the whining of not winning every game has to stop here too. AGAIN…this team was not built to win the presidents trophy. Rather a larger one.

    Glad you asked Bourbon? :)

  101. Nasty, you don´t know what you are talking about….

    Did you ever see live a game in Canada ??? Did you ever see a game in Vancouver vs. Flames or Oilers ???

    Or did you ever see live a game between the Leafs and the Canadiens in Montreal on HNIC ???? Everybody is talking about hockey there….

    I watched a game at MSG between the Rangers and is not bad but it is nothing against like…

  102. Very frustrating loss last night. The Rangers surely outplayed the Nucks 5 on 5 but the pp killed em as did subpar goaltending. The ‘Nucks don’t impress me much. They have a nice first line (that was very quiet last night) and really three 4th lines. I dunno if the Rangers have faced a team with less skill up front. The four minute pp couldn’t have been worse. They did at least miss Shanny on the pp. He would have been more than willing to shoot. Prucha didn’t look good on the pp trying to forcefeed Jagr the puck. Did Drury play last night? I tell ya so far he’s been a pretty big bust. Straka had one good shift on the pk and that was it for him. Hossa was wonderful no? Two senseless penalties to go with his usual bungling of scoring chances. The pk was very solid. The first goal Valley gave up was fugly and the second one wasn’t much better. He really didn’t face much else because the ‘Nucks have so little skill up front. Their defense is fairly solid though. I bet the Devs regret trading Willie Mitchell. Luongo was terrific when he needed to be. It did help that he didn’t have to deal with any traffic in front. Hey Renney please take Tyutin off the pp. He is awful he doesn’t make good plays with the puck nor does he get his shot through.

  103. Oh what a luck !

    Beer me you are still alive !!!

    Can you promise a win against the Oil out of nowhere tomorrow ???

    I neeeeeeed another B………..

  104. Here we go:


    Gomez- B+…only because of slow start/transition
    Jagr- C-…nuff said
    Straka- B+…under rated, and missed when out hurt.
    Drury- B…does all the little things, and man, down the road, we are hoping for big things!!
    Shanahan- A- still has it, and is “real” Captain of this squad.
    Avery- B+- move over “Heart beat Harvey”, and get this guy a new deal
    Dubinsky- B+- this guy should be untouchable…will only get better
    Prucha- D- the “human pinata”
    Callahan- C….only because of his hustle…but we need him to score
    Hossa- F- time to go Hoss
    Betts- B…for penalty killing, blocked shots
    Orr- B…much improved…
    Hollweg- C+…supposedly a “better scorer” than Betts or Orr..needs to put on or two in once in a while…anyone say Dane Byers soon?
    Dawes- Inc- needs to get solid ice time (Prucha or Hossa’s spot)
    Moore- Inc…did not see enough

    Rozsival- B+…much improved…if he shot more, would be A-
    Stall- B…needs to get stronger up top, but wow has he progressed!!
    Girardi- A…my highest “skater” grade. What a revelation, and what, 7 goals too??!!!
    Tyutin- B…inconsistent, but solid for most part
    Mara- B-…why is he not getting this shot off more often. Has been surprisingly solid in own end, and should never/ever be scratched for #8
    Strudwick- C+…great team player, and better than thought on dee, but quick teams give him trouble
    Malik- F…only because grades do not go to Z…thanks Sam for teasing us and saying that we could have moved him! A case where we save the “worst for last”!!!

    Lundqvist- A…little bit of a “hiccup” right now, but without Henke we are swimming with the Lightning and Caps in bowels of Eastern Conference.
    Valiquette- B+…turned out to be good fit…Glad those Esche rumours did turn out.

    Renney and staff- B…seem to be realizing that it is becoming a North American game again, unfortunately focuesd on European leader and dee…will be put to fire to forget about Malik, Hossa and perhaps Prucha.

    Sather/Schoenfeld- B…Where’s Waldo?? At least when Maloney was around we heard from upper management. Trade deadline/cap issues should be interesting.


  105. Beer me, what is going on with Shanny ????? We need him tomorrow night against the Oil….

    hicks, I need another Bourban !!!

  106. congrat to me as well

    7 Bourbons against 7 Beers !!!


    Glen go home ………….

  107. Bourbon, I’m not sure I follow. Shanny and I aren’t exactly ‘best buds’ or anything. lol

    I know I’m going to regret feeding a troll…

    But I saw a game in 1994 at the old Maple Leaf Gardens and it was nothing short of amazing. Not one idiot walking around during play. Infact, even saw someone get tossed for doing it twice. The matchup was TOR vs. DET. It doesn’t have to be 2 Canadian teams to make it fun to watch. You have a point about the rivalries in CAN vs. CAN. But not out west. Ontario & Quebec surely have the best that CAN has to offer. The oil had there day, so did the flames. The ‘nucks? not yet. You had your chance…and we sent you and your little crying beeotch linden packing.

  108. To add to my post about Maple Leaf Gardens…they did not have a replay board. So you better believe all eyes were on the game. If you missed a play…you missed it.

  109. Jagr – C (on pace for 72 pts, not Jagr-esque but above average – loses a grade for negative impact on teammates and his apparent uninterest half the time)

    Gomez – B+ (skating better, forcing passes less; needs to stop turnovers)

    Straka – B- (reason why this line is clicking; goes to the net, screens goalies, skates hard and can keep up with Gomez; needs to shoot/hit the net more)

    Shanny – B (skills diminishing but plays smart, good leader, still has world class shot)

    Drury – C+ (needs to score more, defensive game suffering; if not for faceoffs/blocking shots/PK then he’d be a grade lower)

    Avery – C+ (team lacks energy/passion when not in the lineup; shoots, goes to the net, sets up guys, hits, great antagonizer; would like to see a little more scoring)

    Dubinsky – C (inconsistent, caught the pass-first disease, lots of talent, not great defensively)

    Callahan – D (needs time in Hartford, hardly notice him)

    Hossa – C (one of best forecheckers/cyclers on team, needs to score more b/c he has the shot/hands to do it-give PP time to boost confidence)

    Prucha – D (only asset is scoring; to do this he must improve his balance/puck control and add 10-15 lbs of leg muscle – he plays like he’s 195 lbs but he’s sitting at 175 soaking wet)

    Betts – B+ (great at his role; if he put in a few he’d be an A)

    Orr – C (fighting only asset, but average; average defensively, no offense)

    Hollweg – C (good at his role, hitting dropped off otherwise would be B)

    Staal – B (great progress, still makes some rookie mistakes)

    Roszival – B- (yes lots of goals but he never shoots and is getting burned consistently)

    Tyutin – B (hitting has improved exponentially, overall defense solid)

    Girardi – B- (solid overall, added offense is nice, but making mistakes as he tries to expand his game)

    Mara – C (just average, should shoot more)

    Malik – D (very little redeeming qualities at this point)

    Strudwick – C (lacks skill, makes up with simple play/grit)

    Lundqvist – A- (in a slump but still top 5 goalie)

    Valliquette – B (in his role has done well)

    Renney – D (uses players in wrong spots, bad at mid game adjustments, cant get team to play well consistently)

  110. I really love you………!!!

    I love you all….

    But by the way is there any news that Shanny is playing tomorrow against the Oilies ????

    We just want to hear from the locker room of the Rangers out of Rexall Place…..

    Need another Bourbon !!! Bourbon me

  111. Bourbon me and Beer me is just a great mix !!!

    Wouldn´t you agreeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee??????????????????

  112. Beer me I was at the old Maple Leaf Garden as well for a game between the Washington Capitals and the Leafs…Caps won 4-1 with all the score in the first period and Adam Oates scored twice for the Caps…It was just a great and intense game…
    Joe Juneau picked up another a goal and aissist….


  113. Come on Beer what the heck you thinking about me ?????

    I am just a little bit jealous

  114. You are the best poster on this board but it is time for a new entry Sam

    Now we need to be serious…!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  115. Ive been hearing a lot of fans saying that Lundqvist is not a top goalie and may not be because he is inconsistent. I think personally that he will. My friend up at college uncle is Don Maloney. I met him before and he told me that Lundqvist misses a lot of time not because of injuries but because he has head problems. He gets headaches from nerves and stress and has to take medicine because of it. He told me they discovered this in his second season. I feel like this has truth to it because he use to play more consistent and was good at handling the puck. He now cant handle the puck good at all and lets in soft goals more than before. I just hope by signing him long term that when they get rid of Montoya that it comes back to haunt us.

  116. Beer me,

    Do you feel insulted ???

    Shame on me, that´s not what I wanted to do……

  117. Relax. This is what I was saying before about a blog frustrating some people here.

    Craig – It’s so hard to believe something read on a blog, even if it sounds true. I know most of us remember that he was having the headaches and stuff 2 seasons ago. And it certainly is scary heading into negotiations.

  118. Bring back Lohan on

    Who is this IMO guy you all speak of? And more importantly can he play defense better than an ogre?

  119. “I’m only grading 1 person. Renney gets an A.
    Here’s why…any coach that can go this long without telling that friggin crybaby jagr to shut up and play hockey or go back to the Czech Rep. and take over his fathers company, surely deserves a high mark. I’m a HUGE supporter of Tom in other ways, and I can identify when mistakes are made…but so does he. And 99.9% of the time they don’t happen twice.”

    WOW, you’ve got to be kidding me? Do you really think it’s not because Renney is *TERRIFIED* of Jagr? He’s his bread and butter, and has relied on him to save his season and his job 2 years running. Renney doesn’t know how to coach this team to wins, he knows how to keep his fucking jaw shut on the bench and let Jagr/Lundqvist carry himself and the team on their back. Only problem is Jagr’s turning back into a pumpkin right in front of everyones eyes and Tom Renney is stuck with his soft dick in his hands because he doesn’t have the rocks to threaten any of his “big” players. I’m really, really surprised at you BeerMe, I read you for years on HockeyBird, how you have the nerve to give Renney an A ranking is astonishing. A real coach with the balls to punish his players when needed among many other coaching tactics and methods would have this team BEATING THE ABSOLUTE SHIT OUT OF THE EAST.

  120. Bring back Lohan on

    Salty, you may want to refer to the Terms of Service, I believe there is a link to it below! Despite the colorful images, you are pretty dead on. A better coach would have this team 10 points ahead of where they are now. I’d want Renney to coach my children’s JV team, but not an NHL team full of stars. Last night they spoke about his experience in Vancouver “teaching him lessons”,

  121. 1) I never posted at hockeybird. I got fed up with that 2nd-rate sight after I read him say “I give up on this team”. That was right before we swept ATL.

    2) You’re one of the people I was referring to before … “all levels of knowlegde”. you’re on the bottom if you haven’t figured it out.

    3) Don’t let blog or someone else’s opinions destory your life pal.

    4) This team will only truly succeed when Jagr is gone and that primadona attitude that follows him.

  122. This team doesn’t skate hard. End of story.

    If you watch some hockey highlights from any other team in the league… there’s a hunger there that this team doesn’t have. There’s no intensity.

    How many chances does this team bury! I mean really bury!

    Very few. Hossa’s would-be empty netter two nights ago is a great example. He just kinda shot it at the net. He didn’t bury it.

    There’s no killer attitude at all. Just a bunch of guys skating around trying to “create” a goal instead of MAKING it happen.

  123. In response to BeerMe:

    1. SOMEONE frequently updated’s front page with the name/sig/handle “BeerMe!” and I thought it had been established here that it was you. Apologies for the identity mistake, although it makes a lot more sense now that I know that wasn’t you.

    2. I sure did figure you were referring to me. Our opinions are usually very different and that’s often cause for blows to eachothers knowledge/intelligence. Understandable, as I too consider you a moron if you think Tom Renney is an A+ NHL coach, especially the way he’s handling this squad.

    3. Let’s not flatter ourselves just yet, no ones life is ruined, pal. This is essentially a message board and lots of different opinions/discussions arise. Although make no mistake, I do get very very “excited” to talk about this team especially when they are in the position they are now.

    4. I agree with you about Jagr to a large extent, but I think it lies more in the hands of Tom Renney. It’s been he who has catered to Jagr post-lockout and fed the primadonna in order to get him to play nice, and it worked for the better part of 2 seasons. Not anymore though, and it’s time for Renney to pay the piper, and start dealing with a team that cannot survive playing so Jagr-centric. Jagr isn’t dominant anymore, and I think a better coach would have figured out a way by now to use him more effectively or boot him. But make no mistake, it’s Renney who has lived by the sword of Jagr, and is dying by the sword of Jagr. A better coach would have 5 more wins under his belt with even less chips to play with. Renney is no good at playing his hand well. He sure seems like a nice man though, doesn’t he? And those suits….very sharp, no?

  124. Rangers lose thanks to the AWFUL goal given up by Valiquette. We have been lucky with him but stop pressing our luck. I don’t want to see him again until March at the earliest. I think I could have pitched a shutout vs. the Canucks last night and I have not played goal since the 8th grade picnic!

  125. Where is JOSH? We need something other that what is above in the last 15-20 posts.


  126. Hey Sam,

    It seems that the Rangers are sending Kehoe, one of their scouts, to lots of Blue Jackets game lately. Do you feel the Rangers are on the verge of something or is this just checking things out in preperation for a deal near the deadeline?

    The Rangers could use a trade or two. Malik and Mara have been very poor this season. We need at least one or two guys for the blueline. I would be all for getting a guy like Orpik from Pittsburgh, he’s a tough dman who can move out bodies in front of the net and offer a big hit to incoming forwards – plus he’s still young.

    They could also use an offensive defenseman to run the PP and to provide more scoring. Ever since they traded Leetch, they have been moving for a puckmoving defenseman. Ozolinsh was the cheap, but risky aquisition to try to fill the PP need two seasons ago – that experiment failed and we have been in need of this offensive d-man for a while now. Roszival is the only truly gifted offensive dman we have now.

    Tyutin is not that guy and I don’t believe he hsa the offensive upside people are waiting for. Girardi can offer some offense and can still be sound defensively. Staal will be solid on defense and he still may have room to grow offensively. Roszival is our best puck moving d-man and we cant risk losing him.

    We don’t have time to wait for Sanguinetti to come up within the next few seasons – not with a win now team that has Jagr and Shanny on it. Defensemen Timmon and Pitkanen are young offensive guys who have had poor seasons this year, perhpas their teams will be up for parting with them. Maybe its a wish…

    I also agree that the team could use a move or two up front. The Rangers need to make some decisions on some of their younger players and who they think are keepers and who they dont have confidence in.

    Nigel Dawes should be playing with the big club and they should make a decision on him. He should take Hossa’s spot in the lineup. If Jagr isn’t here next season, Hossa’s worth is lost. Let’s face it, at his best, Marcel is a defensive forward. We have enough forwards who are similar on the 3rd and 4th lines – Betts, Hollweg, Orr, Dubinsky. We also should make a decision on Greg Moore. He may deserve a mid season callup ala Girardi/Callahan from last season.

    Down on the farm in the AHL, the Rangers should see if they can include Jessiman on a trade, maybe a team out there thinks he may still blossom. He clearly has no future with the Rangers and is a bust. On the same topic, Don Maloney’s love interest – Lauri Korpikoski must have a breakout season soon on the farm or he should be traded, once again a nother team may value him.

    The Rangers should either allow Montoya to be Hank’s back up (which is the move I think the Rangers should go with) or trade Montoya while his value is high. If we are going to succeed down the stretch and in the playoffs, we cannot depend on Steve Valiquette as our safety net in goal. I am sure he is a nice guy, but he is already 30yrs old and I have no confidence in him when a game that counts is on the line.

    The Rangers need to make a trade or trades to shake things up soon. Last season they had a similar record on paper as they do now. However, last year the Rangers turned it around in February and March to lead them to the playoffs. Are we to count on another miracle run in the last month or two of the season – I think not.

    We need:

    -an offensive defensemen (Klesla, Liles, Pitkanen, Timmonen, Spacek)

    -a hard nosed Buekeboom-like defenseman (Orpik?)

    -another forward with scoring potential

    Can the Rangers pull off a deal to fill any or all of these needs by the deadline in today’s salary cap NHL? If they do pull off the deal, who will they have to give up, and is it worth it?

    Sam, do you have any input, opinions or ideas regarding my post and the Rangers needs down the stretch?

    Readers, do you have any feedback on potential moves for the Blueshirts this season?


  127. Rangers’ record vs. NYI, OTT, and the West:

    Rangers’ record vs. all other teams (ie. Eastern conf):

    Considering we only have 4 left vs the West, that bodes well for the blueshirts the rest of the way. The 4 remaining games vs the ‘sticks are both home and home’s. We’ll definitely get 5-6 points out of those 4.

  128. Devils up 3-0 at Philly, on their way to opening up a 5 point lead over the Rangers with a game in hand.

    Karel Rachunek and Mike Mottau are two of their top six defensemen. They have maybe five forwards who can score (Gionta, Elias, Parise, Madden, Langenbrunner).

    There is one reason, and only one reason, why they sit so far ahead of the Rangers this year. Anyone fathom a guess? Hint:it’s NOT Martin Brodeur.

    Congratulations, Sam.

  129. czechthemout!!!!! on

    As I sit here tonight after watching the devs destroy the flyers,I started thinking ahead to the next ten to fifteen games.Nine are at home,six on the road.Thirty pts are there for the taking.In reality,for the rangers to not be sellers on the trade deadline,they need to get twenty pts to not only not be sellers but also to have a legit chance to win the division and establish the confidence needed to make a run.
    Despite what might seem as some pessemistic comments form me,I still have NOT given up on the season and am hopefull of being able to cheer for some meaningfull hockey into the spring.I do however think that a prolongeg losing streak in the next fifteen games will be something that they cannot climb out of.Last year despite the seven game skid,for some reason I do not have that same feeling and something just does not seem right with this team.With that in mind,I thought it might be intersting to see who the rangers have that other teams would wan’t and be willing to give some young prospects and draft picks back in return.


    Probobly will not hit his targeted bogies to get another year.If he has a no-trade clause would probobly bring the most in terms of prospects and draft picks.Ottawa might be a good place for him maybe we can get patrick eaves and a number 1 back.Also the ducks for edmontons number one and a prospect (Bobby Ryan)


    Another ufa.Has said he’s going back home after this season.Could also bring a mid level prospect and either a number 2 or a three and a 4.In 2008 the draft is supposedly very strong and stockpiling picks miight be a good thing.


    a certain rent a player,worth a second rounder.


    another ufa who has been putting up good stats this year.He might have alot of value out there to teams looking for an offensive dman.Could bring back a good prospect from a team like the sharks who have many.

    Marek Malik-

    Thank god anther ufa.We will be lucky to get anything back for him other than a bag of pucks.But seriously
    maybe a third or fourth rounder as well.


    same as above.


    may bring some decent prospect in return if not,I would keep him and try agin fresh next year.


    maybe a 5th or 6th rounder at best.

    would not trade any one else other than Hollweg or Orr,But they won’t bring much in return.

    Would sign Sean Avery and make him an assistnt captian along with Gomez and give Drury the C.These Young vet leaders would be a nice transition to the next level.They bring leadership and are winners and can be a great example of what it takes as far as hustle and determination can bring to a team,especialy what most likely promises to be a young one.

    IF we can add a bobby ryan and a patrick eaves to a line up that will most likley also have Artem Anisimov
    and Dane Byers,along with either Mike Sauer and Bobby Saguenetti and perhaps a fairly youn Fa on the d,we may have the beginings of what could be a big team with speed,skill,gritt,and size.It also might be a team that might make a cup run alot faster than anyone thinks.

    This of course is all predicated on us not doing well in the next 4 weeks.I hope that the oposite happens and we by some miracle find the same lightning in a bottle we found after the St.louis game and have a great run to the cup.


  130. 44 pts in 41 games.
    let’s say 100 pts is most assuredly a spot in the top 4-5 of the conference.
    rangers need 56 pts in 41 games, so lets assume another 4 OT losses – their record would need to be 26-11-4.
    can it be done?
    congrats sam on the new addition!

  131. czech – doubtful we’ll be sellers even if we don’t get 20 pts in next 15 games but rather 15 pts for example.

    but re your proposals no way Anaheim gives up what would be a top 5 pick in this yrs draft for JJ. Him or Shanny would bring a number 1 but late in the round like from Detroit for Shanny. Straka has not said hes going after this yr. I f the team shows interest (real interest) he might come back. he’s a proud guy and would only come back if really wanted.

    BTW – if all the czechs leave what will be your new name.

  132. “”Malik took a penalty at the end which costs us a goal on the ensuing power play, and he’s right back out there. Where is the discipline? What sort of leverage do Malik and Hossa have on the coach?””

    why do guys keep asking this stupid question when they know the answer. the answer is of course to placate and brown-nose Jagr, pure and simple.

    it shows how much of a negative influence Jagr has on the running of this team. trying to kiss his ass means playing his buddies who drag down the team like Ma-geek.

    some friggin captain, eh?

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