New lines against Thrashers


As expected, Tom Renney plans to jumble his lines tonight against the Thrashers.

On paper, they all seem intriguing. Whether they work in reality remains to be seen.





<li>On defense, brace yourself for the return of Marek Malik, who will skate with Michal Rozsival. Paul Mara comes out despite Tom Renney’s claim that the defenseman has “elevated” his game of late, and Jason Strudwick comes back in to play with Marc Staal.

<li>Mark Messier and father Doug were on hand for the morning skate, then wandered into the training room afterwards to mingle with players.

<li>I hate to say it, because it’s unfortunate, but the Rangers caught a break today: The Penguins “announced that Sidney Crosby will miss at least six weeks”: with a high ankle sprain. Oh, and the Leafs fired “John Ferguson Jr.”:

More later..

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  1. new lines won’t matter unless these guys play with some intensity and effort that hasn’t been there for quite some time.

  2. This will be real interesting. I wish I did not have a company meeting from 6:30-9:30. Thank god for rangers in 60.

  3. I usually don’t comment on lines. But this is interesting. Here’s my take:

    I like Avery up there. He, more than anyone else on this team likes a challange. And if he wants one, playing with Jagr should provide such.

    Dubinsky’s drive could help Shanny on the ‘next’ unit. And with dubi’s and dawe’s speed compared to that of drury & avery, it should compensate for the lack of Shanny’s.

    Drury will surely see less minutes and though I do like him, facts are facts and he hasn’t been providing what we need. Prucha has been skating hard, and though straka’s #’s aren’t where we’d like them to be, balances the offensive ‘attack’.

    Malik in the lineup…uhhhhh…let’s just hope it’s b/c there’s scouts in the bldg tonight.

  4. Good Job Renney!!!! Take out the one D-man besides Tyutin that actually hits and shoots.

    Maybe Renney is pulling a “Costanza” and doing exactly the opposite of what he would normally do.

    Maybe the Rangers can do the same and win. If they don’t win any other night let them at least show Leetch some respect and win on Thursday. If they don’t then Leetch night might be the only highlight of the year.

  5. I don’t mind the new lines. I like Avery with Gomez and Jagr , he adds grit and speed to the line. A benching of Rozsival is much more warranted than a benching of Mara imo.

  6. Anyone see the Caps-Pens game last night? I think Ovechkin has more goals than the entire Rangers team. The guy is just a human highlight reel. The Nhl imo is making a big mistake in marketing Crosby as the face of the Nhl over Ovechkin.

  7. Rangers will make the playoffs. I know i’m gonna get beat up for that but thats what I think.

    I like Avery with Jagr and Gomez because Avery is the only one besides Drury, who gets in the goalies face. Sean may have a big night. Dubi deserves to be put on that 2nd line, He has been the best forward the last few games. We have to start winnning and I was actually happy to see Renney pissed off for once. Made me feel better.


  8. It’s going to take more than that to make me feel better. And he better keep the lines together for the whole game.

  9. ThisYearsModel on

    Those lines are a Charlie Foxtrot. Why in the world would he breakup the kid line? Why does Colton the Useless continue to have a spot on this team? Why does Shanahan continue to kill penalties? Why is Mara out in favor of Malik? If Renney wanted to do something, give a couple of these dopes a seat in the box and bring up a couple kids from Hartford.

  10. I’m upset that the 4th line remains intact. I want Hollweg off this team asap. He’s a liability everytime he’s on the ice. The guy has trouble skating and stick handling at the same time.

  11. When you think about it, Mara kind of screwed the weekend for us. The team played like hell, but he scored on us on saturday, and that blind pass on sunday killed us as well.

  12. Graves9…did you see Ovechkin almost destroy Malkin? Had he connected clean Malkin would have been in the hospital today.

  13. graves9 – “The Nhl imo is making a big mistake in marketing Crosby as the face of the Nhl over Ovechkin.”

    If #8 was from Canada and not overseas, they would probably consider it. Its a bias league. And this is just another example.

    RobZ – I’m with you dude! And good point about having someone to park in front. Every line has someone that is capable of it now. It’s just a question if they have the guts to go there.

  14. Yeah that was awesome. He hits like a young Lindros, skates like a young Bure shoots like an in his prime Brett Hull and plays with the intensity of a Mark Messier of his prime. That and his endless joy for the game makes him my favorite player in any sport to watch.

  15. I must agree with you guys on Ovechkin. The guy can do it all and is the real deal. I think he is the best player in the world right now. The complete package. Has he ever been in a fight?

  16. Awww, everyone is getting along today. How cute. I guess Beer Me and his animal house comment and everyone’s reaction to it, and then apology made every cool off a bit. I was sharpening knives and loading my gun before that all happened. Laughter really is the best medicine.

  17. I just threw up!
    Good one, change the one line that is developing some chemistry.
    For what its worth here’s what I would do

    Shanny sits cause he’s INJURED!!!!!

    Malik should put his skates to use by slicing and serving oranges and water.
    Put Mara with Rozi. Rozi and Malik don’t shoot but Mara does

  18. If Mara is being scratched because of the bad pass, then Malik should be scratched for the rest of his career for all the mistakes he makes. I bet he gets the first penelty tonight

  19. BillyRanger
    Either Malik or JJ will get the first penalty in the first 2 min. JJ for hooking or Malik for holding

  20. I have come to the conclusion that Renney is lost. How many times this year is he going to change the line combo’s. The best line the rangers had was dubi, dawes and prucha so he breaks them up. This is the same M.O. Renney has done all year and hasn’t done crap. I bet you that during the game he will probably mix the lines some more. I’ve come to the conclusion that Renney must step down and go back to player development in the rangers organization and let somebody else step in to coach this team to right this ship.

  21. One other major thing I forgot to say, Malik back in the lineup, do I need to say more!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

  22. Rocco A Agree with you. Staal & Rozsi did play well together. Sit Malik for the balance of the season. Please bring up Baranka. My line combos would be: (1) Hossa, Straka & Jagr, (2)Drury, Gomez & Shanahan,(3)Dawes, Dubie & Prucha, (4) Avery, Betts & Orr. Jagr needs Straka. Hollweg has no upside; too many dumb penalties. Maybe the 4th line will have more scoring punch with Avery. Drury, other than winning face offs will do better on the left side. Hossa worked well with Jagr last year. The bottom line is that it doesn’t make any difference if the Rangers don’t play with any passion or commitment.

  23. The following is from Zip…

    “Paul Mara, whose shot on the power play may be missed, is not being punished, said Renney, for his play. “It’s to get Harry (Malik) in,” he said.
    If you’re a skeptic, you may wonder whether a deal involving Mara or Malik, both unrestricted free agents, is in the works.”

  24. Tomg,
    Please NO PLAYER DEVELOPMENT, remember he is trying to turn players into things they are not.

  25. I bet Alexander the Great, with a few fighting lessons, could beat the sh*t out of someone. The guy is a pretty big kid. I don’t dislike Crosby, but I’d rather have Ovechkin on my team any day of the week.

  26. If there is a deal in the works it would be Mara especially that he is sitting this game out tonight.

  27. I don’t think anything we could get for Mara would make a difference unless the “brass” is add youth to the package.

  28. Yuck, I would rather keep Mara and trade Malik. Can we trade both and add another Ranch 1 to the Garden?

  29. C’mon, we all know the chicken finger platter at Ranch 1 is the best thing going over there. Ha.

  30. Beer Me! – I was hoping that would be the case with Malkin. Nice job lightening up the place yesterday, too. I knew that was from some movie or TV show, but couldn’t quite place it. I feel like Peter on _Family Guy_ said something like that once.

  31. I gotta say, I absolutely love coming to this blog.
    I makes my day go quicker, makes me laugh…
    sob sob where’s that warm bath.

  32. Ever notice those are not *real* Ranch 1 chicken fingers? They just use the box… if youve had real ranch 1 chix fingers…you know there is a big difference

  33. My wife used to work in the city, and when I would come to visit her we would go to Ranch 1. The real chicken fingers are amazing.

  34. hey, I vote for a white castle in the garden. I got a couple of burgers in front of me that won’t be here for long.

  35. I love it. Shuffling lines like it is still preseason. Talk about clutching for straws. Desperation at its finest…

  36. Over at blueshirtbulletin they pointed out that shuffling the d pairings worked in that win over MTL. Maybe looking for the same success with the forwards.

    My opinion on splitting up the DDP line is to try to spread some of the effort around. By looking at them now, you can see that there is at least 1 guy on every line that skates hard every game. Who knows if it will work, but we’ll see I guess.

  37. I will tell you where there are amazing burgers. Anyone been to a Red Robin. AMAZING!!!!!! I moved over the summer and there is one right near my house. I love that place. Seriously some of the best burgers I have ever had. Check it out if you have one close by, or it is even worth the drive if it is not that close.

  38. hockeymanrangers on

    Everyone is saying the are playing with no passion which I agree with. I also say they are not having fun, yea I know when your losing your not having fun. But it seems like they are so tense about scoring that they can’t. I kind of hate to say this but lighten up a little have some fun out there. I don’t know, but what I DO KNOW is this is NOT fun hockey to watch. I said this b/f I’ll say it again if they can’t turn this season around in the next 5 or 6 games, Renny needs to walk. That’s just my opinion.

  39. Is there any confirmation that Drury stated that he doesn’t know what his role is under Renney?

  40. Bring back Lohan on

    The Rangers suck so much that we are talking fast food. If anyone cares, I am partial to Arby’s. The creativity in the name alone makes it great.

  41. This blog is great, you guys put a great spin on an otherwise dreary season. I agree Renney is lost and has reached the peak of his desperation. Lets just hope Malik has a good game so they can trade his ass. I am in total agreement that they should sit some of these bums and call in the kids at Hartford for a while.

  42. Nasty1 – Is it wise for us to take food advice from someone calling themself ‘Nasty’? jk I’ve drivin by Red Robin 100 times and never tried it. Hear they have uhhhh beer there too, right?

    johnm – I remember reading something similar to that, but it wasn’t that cut & dry. To hear it that way makes it sound like someone had an agenda to twist words around. But I can neither confirm nor deny the statement as a whole. Just that “doesn’t know his role” is not a Drury quote.

  43. Rob: I think that playing Malik is simply to give teams a look at him to deal him. The problem is the more you play him, the less anyone wants him.

    There really needs to be more White Castles in the city, the only two I know off are in the mid to high 30s on 8th and the one in Spanish Harlem. Can we get one at the garden, PLEASE!

  44. “They could just sell the white castle IN the bathroom.”

    You mean, thats NOT white castle I’ve been buying in there?

    Arby’s is bomb.

    “Beef” ‘n Cheddar is killer. I did a Phish tour a couple of years ago deep into the midwest and the ONLY thing we would eat on the road was Arby’s. It really never got old, it was always perfect.

  45. tomg – great link there. That is THE most fair assessment I’ve heard in quite some time. THE most fair not only of Renney, but any coach, in any sport for that matter. That thought process I believe is the correct one, but unfortunately in the world of instant gratification, these are the rules that apply.

  46. Bring back Lohan on

    salty, this might make your entire day…..
    The name Arby’s comes from the sounds made by the letters R and B. AR for A and BY for the letter B. This stands for the RoastBeef sandwiches that make them so popular. ARBY=RB=RoastBeef.

  47. Lohan… that IS awesome… never even thought of that!

    As for that blog post, 1) that does not come from an actual beat writer mind you, and 2) I was almost starting to feel for Renney, and I’m sorry but once I read this excerpt:

    “Tom Renney always made time to talk to me about the prospects. As busy as he was and with other issues he had to deal with I was treated with the same courtesy that Renney gave the beat guys.”

    …the writer loses all credibility in my opinion.

    I believe the writer is biased, and is yet another victim of Slick Tommy’s personal charm and golden tongue. It’s real tough to say a negative thing about someone who’s treated you like first class, I understand that. Tom’s a business man, he’s got the whole sales thing down pat.

    The article gives Renney a 96% free pass, and it’s really a joke. Renney may have assisted in finding some of the kids, but he is a lost cause when it comes to harvesting his crops. That blog is pure shite. Renney will pay for being soft on his guys and allowing himself to be Jagr’s bitch. Don;t let that sob story get to you… *that guy is under Renney’s spell just like the rest of the media, he damn near admits it.*

  48. First of all, GYRO II rules.

    Second, Ovechkin is the s^&*.

    Third, Avery still looks broken and playing tentative so don’t expect too much.

    Fourth, Yeah, break up the kid line but not the 4th. Lose Hollywood!

  49. Ovechkin is *by far* the nastiest hockey player in the world right now. Would have been sick to see him scrap with Malkin….

  50. Salty. I see your point there, but you seem to completely be one-sided on it. And looking past certain facts to back your own opinion.

    My whole thing on the coaching debate, regardless of who it is or how ‘slick’ someone may be, is that in THIS particular instance, at THIS particular point of the season I think the season needs to be finished with the current staff. I just don’t see that being the solution at this point. An offseason move I could understand a bit. But we all see the complextion of the team and the roster changing pretty dramatically(there’s that word again)…this offseason. The players on the block aren’t worth diddly. So barring a blockbuster, or packing it up and playing for a draft pick, IMO…I say stay the course(but CERTAINLY not opposed to dealing ufa’s). And if this ship goes down Renney will go down with it. As will the proverbial ‘captain’.

    Also, it’s funny that with all this fast food talk, no one seems to like McDonald’s, the worlds #1 burger. Yuck.

  51. Maybe I, personally, don’t blame Renney enough for what is going on, maybe a lot of people blame him too much. The expectations for this team were through the roof with a lot of new faces a weaker D-line than most other teams.

    This team is built in two different directions, now and soon. We signed 2 key free agents to long term deals that will be the keystone of this team for the duration of their contracts but out marque player doesn’t enjoy playing with them and can not adapt. I do believe Renney has lost Jagr but I really believe that is it. Perhaps he coddles him too much but the reality of it is that Jagr is out of here after this season and seems to have been all year really and this team is more or less built post Jagr with the type of players that we have.

    Coming out of the lockout, there were no expectations, we were rebuilding yet with the players we picked up, they clicked. 4 or 5 of the top 6 players were Europeans on opening night against the Flyers. Now Sather has made the shift of phasing that out and has started to build more of a North American team and it seems that one player in particular doesn’t agree with it at all, sadly that seems to be the captain. Should he have the C pulled? Probably yes. Will he? No. Would it be a first before a players tenure is up? Not at all. While Shanny would be a perfect fit for the C, Drury should be given it. His play has not dictated it but since when does your best player have to wear the C?

    I think what is going on is not only hurting the team now but also for the future and something needs to be done about it now.

    If that makes no sense, I’m sorry. I have BRGR on my brain right now!

  52. agreed i do not like that article on renney. he may have helped on our international scouting but as far as developing young players who has really progressed under his development? I guess you can make a case for Dubinsky but Prucha, Dawes, Toots and even Girardi have not really gotten better under Renney’s watch. And part of that has to be his fault as he (presumably) decides when and where to play each player.
    And Renney is the one who has wanted Hossa around, along with the other fourth line players so he cannot get a free pass there. And he makes no attempt, as stated above, to hold the veterans accountable.

    Bottom line, without Jagr, Henrik and Avery last year, Renney would have been the coach of two nonplayoff teams whose young players have not improved.

    He appears to be better fit for a scouting role and maybe overseeing a youth camp in the summer, but not leading a team to the Stanley Cup.

  53. Jason, I enjoyed your post.

    Salty – you’re probably typing right now saying ‘here we go again’. Don’t bother, neither of us are going to sway the other in a different direction. it’s cool.

  54. And listen up cause I don’t agree with the naysayers too often…if ever. But I DO think that Renney has been too soft with Jags. That said, it is to protect is own job. Jags probably has the ability to get a coach fired. But lets look at something here…It’s never benefitted him. I can’t really go through and look at all of his past coaches, just don’t have the time right now. But Jags hasn’t won sh-t since ’92. And there was ‘ol #66 there with him, and a cast of HOF’s. Art Ross trophies are cool and all if you care more about yourself than your team. But I don’t remember there being a parade for that one.

  55. I also do think if the rangers are struggling by the dead line
    they can trade jagr and get good young talent and draft picks back because the flyers did that last year with forsberg and IMO I think Jagr has more left than forsberg.

  56. Beer,
    The reason Renney is soft on Jagr more than anyone else is because of the reputation Jagr has carried around his entire career. He is the best player in the world when he is happy and the worst when he isn’t. Renney being soft on him is trying to make him happy and I don’t blame him but I fear that Jagr will never be happy in NY now. It has nothing against Renney, Sather, the team or the city but that is how Jagr is and it’s the risk we took when we got him. It paid off greatly for two years but I think losing Nylander was it. Were we right for not signing Nylander. Hell yeah! He wanted too many years for an aging player who now by the way, is out for the rest of the year.

  57. Bottom line, without Jagr, Henrik and Avery last year, Renney would have been the coach of two nonplayoff teams whose young players have not improved.

    Beer, this is where I come from. I’m not as one sided as you might think, but I’m also not under a spell, and I can recognize that a team that happens to be winning games (last two seasons) may still not have the right man behind the bench. Just as much as you say you can’t blame the coach for losing, you can’t necessarily blame him for the winning either y’know? We’ve read eachother enough at this point, I hope you’d realize I do not blame things soley on Renney, but I do belive he is very very near to the root of the problems. As much as I think he has made things worse is the same amout that I believe he could have made things better if he actually knew what he was doing instead of picking one system out of “Coaching for Dummies” and sticking with it despite magnificent failure.

  58. I also think that letting Jed Ortmeyer walk last year was a mistake too. He may not have had the best offensive talent but the guy had a voice in the locker room and would do anything for this team which is what this team needs more of.

  59. ok, so then instead of looking back on the last 2 seasons, let’s look at next year and assume (please god) that jagr doesn’t trigger his option year, straka & shanny retire, and our D is fixed as best as slats can.

    Renney’s style of being the ‘nice guy’ and trying to give (the younger)guys the (for lack of a better term) emotional boost they need when they make a mistake out there. His style fits more with a group of players that aren’t set in there ways and to stubborn (jags) to adapt to a different style of play. These young guys will change coaches so many times as they progress so fast from league to league that it doesn’t have the same effect on them.

    I can’t sit here and say that Renney is the right coach for Jags, but I still think he is the right coach for the continuing re-identification of the rangers franchise.

  60. And I agree 100% that he was coddling Jagr in fear of getting fired… possibly the right move *until* your job goes on the line *because* your golden boy is no longer producing. Jagr was great here because Renney let him run the show for the most part, he should have recognized the writing on the wall though. What are you gonna do, cross your fingers each night and hope Jagr is finally happy enough to do everything by himself again?

    Not to offend anyone either, but anyone ever kinda question Jags sexuality? I read an article a while back where reading between the lines had me questioning him. Something about he didn’t want the company of ladies because he was “too immature” or something? No joke. The articl emay have been from 05-06 season, I think they talk about Prucha living with him at the time.

  61. Just a question… I’ve never heard of such a pouty/girly player, not even Lindros.

    Jagr straight up wants to be a princess it seems. NEVER wants to get his hands dirty.

  62. I think it’s b/c everyone’s always bowed to the #’s.

    It’s like gerry garcia says: “every silver lining’s got a touch of grey”

  63. pretty sure jagr has a serious girlfriend in prague who was flown over here for something last year, but who cares either way…the fact that he can’t put the puck in the net is all i care about

  64. Hahaha, Jerry also hit the needle harder than Orr hit Cullen.

    On another note I wouldn’t mind seeing Prucha on that first line in place of Avery… takes some agression out of that line but has there ever really been any there anyway?

  65. I’m cautiously optomistic about Avery up there. He is clearly not top line material, but Jags doesn’t look like one right now either!

    I can see going into this one that we can’t match there speed. We have the better goalie if he decides to bring his A-game.

    Avery better let go of anything Kovalchuk says to him tonight, he’s in no shape to fight and has to think of his team 1st.

    What period does Jags take his hooking penalty?

  66. pretty sure jagr has a serious girlfriend in prague who was flown over here for something last year..


    See this is my point exactly… what kind of *joke* is that? A hall of famer, NHL Captain in New York City “maitaining a long distance relationship with a girl in Prague”… If that’s not a cover up, I don’t know what is!? It’s almost too perfect. As if theres any reason for her to be there instead of here? Like Jags can’t support her and she “has” to work over there? Pleaaaaase!!!

    Like I said, truthfully doesn’t bother me what Jags does, I just do want to see him produce if he’ sgoing to be here. It is just quite curious to wonder why Jagr really is the legitimate princess of the NHL. And you know he is.

  67. “Tom Renney always made time to talk to me about the prospects. As busy as he was and with other issues he had to deal with I was treated with the same courtesy that Renney gave the beat guys.”

    …the writer loses all credibility in my opinion.

    I believe the writer is biased, and is yet another victim of Slick Tommy’s personal charm and golden tongue. It’s real tough to say a negative thing about someone who’s treated you like first class, I understand that. Tom’s a business man, he’s got the whole sales thing down pat.

    The article gives Renney a 96% free pass, and it’s really a joke. Renney may have assisted in finding some of the kids, but he is a lost cause when it comes to harvesting his crops. That blog is pure shite. Renney will pay for being soft on his guys and allowing himself to be Jagr’s bitch. Don;t let that sob story get to you… that guy is under Renney’s spell just like the rest of the media, he damn near admits it.”




    exactly right. and that goes for ALL the soft Ranger media.

    it is a bloody disgrace that they are unwilling to say one word of deserved criticisn of their MEAL TICKET who gives them nice quotes.


  68. Jagr not producing ?? 43 points … Get rid of the other 19 also … they are not producing….

  69. stopwiththefourthlinealready on

    I hate renney….

    I know this team needs a shakeup and there are probably tons of ways to do it but here is what i want to know. When Jagr is struggling, why not try him with hossa who we know he plays well with. Aside from what people think of Hossa, he is a much more able body than hollweg or orr. If you put a fourth line of betts hossa and orr and then you doubleshift jagr some shifts and sit orr. I also like that breaking up drury shanny and gomer straka. They are two combos of similar players and need to be kept apart for team depth. Anyways here would be my lines….

    Prucha Jagr Gomez
    Straka Drury Shanny
    Avery Dubi Dawes
    Hossa Betts Orr

    Staal Mara
    Tyutin Girardi
    Struds Rosival

  70. Beer Me, I commend you for still having the head to consider actual game tactics and breakdowns…

    At this point I’m just looking for lighting in a bottle pretty much. You can say anything you want about what needs to happen on paper. The Rangers have not had a flicker of real chemistry this entire season. Chemistry takes over when it’s there, when every one is “speaking the same physical language” on the ice and plays just materialize right in front of your eyes. When you have players that are in the zone and basically nothing they do is wrong, when you just *can’t* hit the wrong note. You see this all around the league. You see this on the teams that have little to no “talent”, but a couple of average guys can get a feel for eachother and make highlight plays.

    I watch every game wondering if it will be *that game*. BUt make no mistake, at this point, I realize I am really just looking for pure magic.

  71. Salty,
    I agree, I don’t care what line combos renney tries which he has done this season to many times. It just come to a point that the veteran players we had last year have no chemistry with drury and gomez and the young players of this year.

  72. Koffy, what don’t you understand that 43 points from Jaromir Jagr is not acceptable? That assists and, worse, secondary assists are unacceptable? We’re talking about Jaromir Jagr, for christ’s sake.

  73. Don’t be surprised either if the rangers are down 2-0 tonight
    and you see the dubi, dawes, prucha line back together because those three have shown more chemistry than any other ranger line this year.

  74. if they can’t win these 2 games, then you know something is seriously wrong, because Atl plays terrible vs the rangers most times. that series last year was a onesided pathetic joke from the Atl side. Hossa did not even try or make even a token effort, he was a farce. and the rest allowed Avery to get under their skin and take them out of their game. I notice that this year most teams are successful vs the rangers when they allow Avery to do his thing, they hold their ego, turn the other cheek, and take it. when they engage with avery, then it sparks the rangers, and things change..I guess they are learning to try to negate and neutralize the Avery effect.

    but that is why I think they will win these 2. because Atl has not shown that they can turn away from Avery. and I am sure that is why he is on the top line tonight

  75. I can’t wait until tomorrow when these line combos fail and the team get the crap kicked out of them tonight. What does renney do then? Call up the Pack??

    I am a Ranger fan through and through but I see nothing good of this line shake up. These are things you deal with during the preseason.

    If this is a way to turn the team around great. If it does not work it will be a slippery slope back up to the top of the hill. I am just afaird it could lose us some young lings like Dubi, Dawes, PA etc…If that happens me and many of you will be crushed.

  76. TOMG

    I do think line combos play a giant role in chemistry, but my point is that it doesn’t matter what “type of game” the Rangers play at this point. In my opinion this team is either going to suck, or beat the piss out of teams. I’m personally not interested in seeing them “manuever” wins at this point, and sneak past teams they should be dominating. It’s pointless to me. Clearly, they are NOT good. Even getting weak wins against weak teams perpetuates the illusion that things are alright, just a tweak away from a Cup run. As much as I’d love that, and continue to watch for a sign of that, I know it’s not true. The Rangers, for the third season in a row, have blown really bad for a large portion of the season and are struggling for a playoff spot. With this roster, it’s *unacceptable*. I pray that they don’t squeak into a spot this year. I want the entire organization to taste the warm shit sandwich that we have all been fed the entire season and think long and hard about how to fix it and maybe gain a fleck of respect in this league.

  77. Spector’s Blog
    by: Spector

    Potential NHL Trade Bait.
    Jan 21, 2008 | 4:05PM | report this
    With the NHL’s trade deadline fast approaching here’s my take on some players thought to be possible trade bait and who might be on the move by February 26th:

    Mats Sundin: As long as the Toronto Maple Leafs have a shot at a playoff berth, he won’t waive his “no-trade” clause.

    Marian Hossa: The Atlanta Thrashers are trying to re-sign him leading to speculation that if he’s not re-signed by the deadline he’ll be shopped. If the Thrashers are still in the playoff chase I suspect GM Don Waddell won’t move him, but if not, he could indeed hit the trade block.

    Alex Tanguay: His name’s popped up this past week due to media concerns about the Calgary Flames off-season cap issues, but he’s denied seeking a trade or being asked to waive his NTC. I suspect Flames GM Darryl Sutter could retain him for the upcoming playoffs and perhaps consider shopping him in the off-season.

    Olli Jokinen: Ever notice that it’s Canadian-based media outlets that often report the Florida Panthers captain could be traded? Ever notice that to date they’ve yet to be right?

    Rob Blake: He says he hasn’t agreed to waive his NTC or asked to waive it, but the possibility exists that this LA Kings blueliner could be playing elsewhere by February 26th.

    Jaromir Jagr: If the NY Rangers were to shop him I have my doubts there’d be many takers given his low production this season and his reputation for moodiness.

    Patrick Marleau: A fixture in the rumor mill since last April, his below-average stats and the expensive ($12.6 million) two year contract (with a no-trade clause) beginning next season should keep him in the Shark tank.

    Dan Boyle and Vaclav Prospal: Tampa Bay Lightning GM Jay Feaster suggested that if the club fails to make a playoff push he could be forced into making some cost-cutting moves, leading to speculation impending UFAs Boyle and Prospal could be part of those moves.

    Brian Campbell: He’s postponed his contract talks with the Buffalo Sabres until the off-season. That’s led to trade speculation that Sabres GM Darcy Regier rejected, claiming he hopes to re-sign Campbell. I believe him.

    Maxim Afinogenov and Dmitri Kalinin: The former has struggled offensively this season and the latter’s eligible for UFA status this summer. I wouldn’t rule out the possibility of the Sabres trying to move either guy by the deadline.

    J.P. Dumont: The Nashville Predators might not have enough money available this summer to re-sign him and if they’re out of the playoff race in a month’s time could consider shopping Dumont.

    Michael Ryder: The Montreal Canadiens aren’t expected to re-sign him after this season and could try to move him in the coming weeks. His sub-par production this season however could hurt his trade value.

    Nikolai Khabibulin: I wouldn’t doubt Chicago Blackhawks management would love to dump the remaining year and $6.75 million on his contract, but that and his poor performance this season won’t make him enticing to anyone at this year’s deadline.

    Yanic Perreault: The Chicago Blackhawks could try to peddle this faceoff specialist to a Stanley Cup contender.

    BLEEP Tarnstrom: He’s been considered the odd man out on the Edmonton Oilers blueline, and with some teams seeking a veteran puck-moving defenceman Tarnstrom could attract some attention leading up to the deadline.

    Keith Carney: This blueline veteran was a frequent scratch in the first half of this season, and he could end up shopped by the Minnesota Wild in the coming weeks.

    Christian Backman: Plenty of speculation the St. Louis Blues could shop a defenceman for depth elsewhere in the roster, and Backman’s name has been floated as part of those rumors.

    Bear in mind, folks, that this is only a quick observation of who might or might not be dealt. There are likely to be players that no one suspected as trade bait who could be traded by February 26th, and that most of the above-mentioned players could end up staying with their respective teams.

  78. “”Jaromir Jagr: If the NY Rangers were to shop him I have my doubts there’d be many takers given his low production this season and his reputation for moodiness.””


    so we can’t even get rid of this sulking crapweasel

  79. Seamus O Riley on

    Mara has “elevated” his game (Renney) all the way up to the pink seats.

    Malik, coming off his worst game as a Ranger, will be on the number #1 pairing, so that Rosival will have to stay home and babysit Malik and not contribute to the offense.

    If you don’t believe me that Tom Renney is an idiot, just watch how much ice time Malik gets. Keep your eye on him and turn down the sound. You will be stunned. Release mute button after a particular horrid play by Malik and listen to Sam Rosen talk about ANYONE else but what YOUR eyes just saw.

    DO NOT throw things at your TV. D/V is not the answer. Well, it may not be the answer, but…

    Malik really pushes my buttons! Mrs Seamus would like to let Lundqvst bang him upside that huge cranium with his goalie stick.

    She also says that Malik, as a child, wore a hockey helmut to school and licked bus windows, but that is for the biography she is working on.

  80. I do not want to hear Sam Rosen say “THE RANGERS ARE SKATING WELL”
    the first 5 minutes of the game or i will switch the channel to something else.

  81. Salty, “you pray we don’t squeak into a spot this year” ???
    What the hell is wrong with you.
    I thought this was a site for Ranger “fans”
    I’ll take a playoff spot anyway we can get one !

  82. More line changes huh?

    That’ll work… I’m sure. I mean come on!!! How the hell can these guys get any “traction” if they spend most of the time on the ice trying to figure out where their teammates are going or are going to put the puck and then get to the bench and have to discuss the same issues.

    I’m sorry but Renney is just throwing pasta at the refridgerator to see if it sticks. That’s not coaching, that’s not leading, that’s not giving your team a chance to succeed.

    It’s just hoping.

    That’s not good enough.

    I’m not sayin’ fire his arse… but it’s just not the answer.

  83. On a positive statement… I (now living in Orlando) will be at the game tonight and Thursday (thanks to some great friends) and I really hope they turn things around. I REALLY hope.

    Go Rangers!!!

  84. Hockeyman Rangers on

    tomg not until I just read that did I realize that he says that all the time. Ok lately only in the first period of the game, but your right no I will laugh when I hear it tonight. Let’s hope he can say the truthfully in the third period tonight.

  85. Just throwing this one out there. There is a great burger joint on 52 between 8th and 9th called luckys. It’s comparable to BRGR. But what about Taco Hell!

    Also I like the line shakeup but I’d like it even better if they sit Shanny for someone with two good legs. He really isn’t looking hot and there is no doubt the guy can score still with 15 goals but they need to sit him for his own safety and the team too. It’s time to get Cally back up here. I saw someone said Anisimov maybe that a good one too we could then move Drury to the wing. But and no one kill me for this Jessiman has 22 points on the season, maybe its time to give him a shot.

  86. Salty, “you pray we don’t squeak into a spot this year” ???
    What the hell is wrong with you.
    I thought this was a site for Ranger “fans”
    I’ll take a playoff spot anyway we can get one !


    Thats for damn sure I hope we don’t “squeak in” again

    We squeaked into the playoffs last two seasons, perpetuating this grand illusion that things are fine and we are on our way at the helm of Renney and Jagr, and now there is even a lot of reason to doubt Lundqvist. Exactly, I don’t want to squeak into the playoffs just to say “HEY WE MADE THE PLAYOFFS, *THIS YEAR WASN’T SO BAD*, RIGHT? WE CAN HUSSYF#CK AROUND ALL SEASON AND THEN SQUEAK IN EVERY YEAR HUH?”

    This year was bad. This year is bad. It will take nothing less than a biblical act of God to see this team do anything like they did last year.

    And whatever Brahski, say I’m not a fan because I don’t want to see anymore continued reward for less than amazing effort all season long, and will call out the team when they are clearly sucking for no good reason. This team does NOT deserve a playoff berth. I’m a fan but I’m not a moron, I know hockey and I know that this team making the playoffs this year by another miracle is *not a good* thing for the future of this team.


  87. Bring back Lohan on

    tomg, after you hear how they are skating well dont change the channel. If you do, you’ll miss the line about how they are outshooting the Trashers

  88. Wow, just to show how bad 2008 is already besides the Rangers on the downslope now all over the news actor Heath Ledger was found dead in his apartment, WOW.

  89. Salty, give me a break !
    That’s like saying I hope the Giants don’t make the playoffs because they’ll get killed by the next 3 opponents .
    Well, look what happened , in case you have not heard, WE’RE GOING TO THE SUPER BOWL BABY !
    Any thing is possible & I’ll support my team until I die & if I don’t calm down that could be any day now !

  90. RICHTER35, I just checked the daily news and the cleaning lady found him in bed with pills scattered around him and she couldn’t wake him up so she called the cops. They came and was pronounce dead. it appears he committed suicide.

  91. for those who whine about the refs, the rangers have the 2nd most PPs in the entire league.
    so put the blame where it belongs, on the ranger PP.

  92. btw guys – I looked for *Ranch 1* last time I was at MSG. Where is it? I’m gonna be there on Saturday and wanna go if I can find it.

  93. either atlanta is terrible or the rangers are playing one of their best periods of hockey of the season

  94. Seamus O Riley on

    Ok, before anyone that heard Sam say “great play by Malik” let me point out some things:

    1. That play was a penalty. He grabbed the player by the shirt. It was not a great play; he got away with one.

    2. Next, he passed the puck in FRONT of Lundqvst, and got away with it.

    3. next, Holik marched into Lundqvst with Malik BEHIND him!

    4. Then, Malik got the puck back and made a PERFECT pass across the ice, picked off by holik AGAIN..

    how many times can he throw it across the center of the ice WITHOUT being ejected by Tom Renney for something that even 7 year olds DO NOT DO in pee wee hockey???


    INspite of the score, this is gross.

    Malik has to go!

  95. kovalchek is a piece of s@@t, what a cheap shot, he is lucky rosival didn’t get seriously injured. That should be a one game suspension at least.

  96. I’m not sure if I had crap in my eyes, but I think I saw Malik take the body 2 times in the first period.
    Wow…Completely redeemed himself in my book.LOL
    Trade him now while he is a physical stay at home Dman

    Oh yeah, beautiful goal by Dubinski

  97. Kovalchuk should get suspended and also lucky Orr missed his hit on him …

    Straka not shooting with a wide open net just symbolizes there search for the perfect pass mentality.

    Nice goal by DUbi.. he has quite a future he is 21….Malik only one moron pass so far..

  98. I was a big fan of Dubi the first year back after the strike a when I saw him play for the first time in pre-season. This kid is going to be a good one, he skates, has size and can score and is only 21. The rangers and there fans have to be patient with the rangers youth.

  99. czechthemout!!!!! on

    good period overall,team looks energized and dictating the flow and pace of the game for a change.

    dubi will score at least another 10 goals this year and eventually be a consistant 30 goal man.

    really cheap shot by kovalchuck.this is why his teams will never win anything,he’s too stupid despite his immense talent.

    Orr should go after Hossa at some point in the game to send a message.

  100. atl is not just a bad team, but they are an embarrassment to hockey.

    kozlov should be shot for ignoring the puck like that.

  101. That was, by far, the strangest goal I have ever seen in all my years of hockey. Just who exactly did Kozlov think was going to get the puck?

  102. Is Ranch 1 actually inside the Garden? If that’s the case, it’s probably too expensive.

    That Straka goal reminded me of the time recently when the puck was at Jagr’s feet and he ignored it. You could tell Straka was about to go to the bench but saw no smart Thrasher in front of him. He should be in the shootout with those moves, since he can’t pass to anyone then.

    At least Jagr semi-hustled when he needed a new stick to go back on offense. Three really pretty goals tonight by the Rangers. Avery’s was pretty good, too.

    Who said these lines wouldn’t work? I am surprised Valiquette wasn’t in there, though.

  103. Is that Bill Clement I hear filling in for Keith Jones on the Flyers broadcast? That’s odd, and he sounds kind of bored, especially compared to Jones.

    Canadiens -and Jersey both- have 6 goals tonight already. Wait, Jersey now has 7.

  104. I can’t believe Versus sounding like they were praising Kovalchuk. They showed the hit for the game misconduct, said it was the first of his career, then said how they liked that he actually goes in and checks guys. Hopefully, he’s suspended for Thursday. I think they might come down quick because the same teams are playing and hold him out.

  105. boston getting blown out 6-1 by habs.

    that tells us how bad the rangers were the last few games.

  106. What a concept — playing a full 60 minutes at both ends of the ice. Skating, jump, a little passion. Hmmmm. Can it continue?

  107. I actually saw smiles tonight!
    And by the way there’s not going to be much to talk about tomorrow cause they won.
    Remember those days…November…seems like ages ago!

  108. Wow the Thrashers and Habs make the Rangers look like Cup contenders.

    Prucha, Dawes, Betts, Straka, Gomez, Drury, Avery… Rangers are so small up front. Hey, I love the win, “great job boys”, but this team is just too small upfront. On defense we have good size with Staal, Girardi and Toots… Sanguetti is good size also… not worried about our size on “D”, it’s up front we have no size.

    This team needs an Iginla, Doan or Thornton or Vinny upfront.

  109. What a great game! Great effort. I could watch them play like that everynight, even if they lost. Lots of fun, I hope everyone enjoyed as much as I did.


    The NHL and Versus have agreed to extend their contract by three years, the cable network confirmed Tuesday.

    Terms of the deal were not immediately available.

    The network, formerly known as OLN, began televising NHL games during the 2005-06 season. It paid $65 million for the first year, $70 million for the second, and exercised a $72.5 million option for this season.

    Ratings for NHL games on Versus are up this season. Through 29 games, average viewership has increased 34 percent from 195,666 to 261,760. Versus is airing 57 regular-season games this season.

  111. I can’t understand why ratings would go up that much, but I love it! It must be because they fired Bill Clement.

    I can’t believe Niedermeyer gets selected to the All-Star Game after only playing 17 games. Too bad they couldn’t get Enstrom in since it was a Western guy that went out, obviously, which was Zubov. Schneider probably would have been a better choice.

  112. Just a quick observation…
    I am really starting to like Gomez. He had his work ethic POUNDED into him in the swamps of NJ. It’s just amazing to see. He never gives up and shows up to play every night. You can see that work ethic in every player that comes out of NJ. Its amazing. I hope the Rangers organizations does the same thing starting in Hartford. That is how you build a good organization. The Devils are good year in and year out. Lets take that page from there playbook.

  113. Few thoughts:

    -What a joy it is to watch the Rangers play well and win.
    -God, Atlanta sucks. Is this what it’s like to be a fan of another team and watch the Rangers crap away games?
    -Even if you think — as I do — that Jagr has been a huge disappointment this year and had too many bad everythings, it would be nice and smart for the crowd to give him a chant like Henrik’s every once in a while. He’d love it and it would probably pay off in spades.
    -On a broader, non-Ranger note: for all of you who still stick to that bulls&*t about North America vs. Europe, here’s two words: Alexander Ovechkin. And here’s two more: Evgeni Malkin. Let’s only hope Cherepanov and Anisimov can be such Europeans.

    Go Rangers!

  114. this game tonight proves nothing. ATL. was terrible… Hope they can get 2 more points thursday, they need another good effort……

    Kovalchuk should be suspended 1 game if he is not it is a joke…

  115. Actually Stuart, I disagree. It proves the Rangers CAN sustain pressure for 60 mins. You can easily say Atlanta was awful, but credit needs to be given where it is due. The Rangers absolutely suffocated them. When They had the puck they skated with purpose and fire. I wish We could see that every night from the Rangers. I knew Avery would score tonight, but great game from the BIG BOYS. Great all around effort for 60 mins. Keep it up fellas!


  116. Great Game tonite. Currently 5-2 Won/loss for the season tickets I’m allotted. The Mrs. has seen (2) shutouts so far. I think I may take her to the rest of the games. Best game since victories of 4-0 vs. Pitts. & 1-0 vs. the Devils. Near perfect game. The three Scoring lines were well balanced. Who was that impostor wearing Malik’s #8. Didn’t look bad. Everyone had jump, beat the Trashers to the puck all over the ice. We forced the play as opposed to reacting to it. Great team positional play. It really looked like every Ranger had a good time and looked more confident. The Trashers played real bad but I think we had something to do with it. Micheleti (I may not of spelled his name right) said during the “Rangers in 60” Atlanta normally beats teams they respect & loses to teams they don’t respect. If that’s so, I believe Atlanta played us they way we played Boston the last (2) games. I hope this continues thru thurs. nite.

  117. If there was a good night for a scout to be in the building it was last night.

    As someone mentioned…not gonna be as much to talk about today as yesterday.

    Emerick is disgusting. It’s disgusting that he actually called Ranger games at one point. I turn on my radio and mute my tv when he ends up calling a game for us. His head looks like a shlong with glasses.

    I don’t think Kovalchuk will be suspended. At least they got the call right on the ice. Orr had no choice but to grab someone, and it was really more of the ref’s having to pick out someone in blue. Glad it was those guys out there when it happend.

    Always good to see booooooooook in the bldg to.

    Lines worked, hopefully they’re work for more than 60min.

  118. It’s great to see the rangers play well and win but they have done this before this year so I’m not sold because of one game. lets see how they play for the next few months. If they play like this than I will be sold.

  119. hockeymanrangers on

    Ok after watching that game last night I am glad I am not a Atlanta fan. Wow! I thought we looked bad the last game against Boston, Atlanta looked a lot worse last night. Oh well I am sure they will come out banging Thursday night. I sure hope the Rangers don’t get ANY sense that they got thier game back b/c like I said Atlanta looked horrible. The local pee wee club could have beaten them. I really don’t think we can say the new lines worked b/c of how bad Atlanta was. But at least if nothing else the teams moral should have been lifted some.

  120. I said something the other day about toots lack of …well, everything. I think the 2 positives I’d take from last night would be toots maybe getting his head out of his a$$, and Hank hopefully building back a little confidence with a shutout. Eventhough, of the 14 shots he faced(wow), only a handful were quality. But a shutout is a shutout to a goalies psyche. I think anyway, I don’t know…I’m not a goalie.

  121. And to think if we could have taken one game from Boston. Oh well. I was at the game. Good game. I am not getting too excited yet. I think my college intramural team could have beaten Atlanta last night.

    And the Ranch 1 chicken fingers were extra good last night.

  122. My brother and I were at the game last night. Here is what we wondered:

    1) Is Atlanta that bad or did every player on the Rangers collectively decide to have their best game of the season?

    2) Their first period was maybe the best period of the year.

    3) Even Malik looked good. There must have been a full moon.

    4) There has got to be retribution to Kozlov and Kowalchuk after last night’s display of cheap, BS plays.

    5) One game. No more, no less. A good place to build on, but lots to prove still. In fact, tons to prove still.

  123. Lets also not forget that buffalo beat the thrashers the other night 10-1, that should tell you how bad the thrashers are so lets not be happy because of one game. Like I said, lets see how this team does for the next few months.

  124. Also, we noted on Straka’s SH goal, the Thrashers pulled a “Ranger Change” to allow us to score!

  125. Like I said earlier, I’m less concerned with thi swin in particular than I am with the way the Rangers seemed to band together last night.

    “Even Malik looked good”

  126. It just concerns me that it took so long for the team to “band together.” I don’t know. I mean I have been on teams that I have hated some of my teammates but I would definitely stick up for any of them no matter what. That is what a winning team is supposed to do. I hate when someone gets roughed up by more than one guy and the guys just kind of skate away. No room for pussified players on the team. Let’s hope we can build off of this and at least go in to the all star break getting 5 out of a possible 8 points. Isles won last night, Devils won. Our division is just about the hottest in the league right now. Except for us. A win tomorrow night and a loss for Boston puts us in 8th place. No reason to jump for joy but it is something.

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