Why tinker with what’s working?

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There are still two days left before the Rangers face the Flyers, but it doesn’t sound like Tom Renney is prepared to mess with his lineup before then. He said Colton Orr is day-to-day, and Petr Prucha could return. But given the luxury of numbers, he also said there’s no immediate need to rush things.

Meanwhile, when I asked the coach if Stephen Valiquette’s recent run against the Flyers — i.e. consecutive shutouts — merited consideration for Sunday, Renney smirked and said he thought about it, but is leaning toward Henrik Lundqvist.

I don’t blame him. Even Valiquette acknowledged that unlike with a pitcher in baseball, a goalie’s success against a specific opponent is overrated.

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And speaking of goalies, new acqusition David LeNeveu spent much of yesterday working with goaltender coach Benoit Allaire. He will make his debut for the Hartford Wolf Pack on Saturday.

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Fred Sjostrom’s adjustment to New York has been made easier by the fact that he’s been crashing at Henrik Lundqvist’s apartment the last few days. The plan is to eventually check into a hotel.

More in a bit…

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66 Comments

  1. longtimerangersfan on

    Hmmm, wonder if I could crash at Lundqvist’s pad too…probably a lot of chicks coming and going. Wait, I’m too old for that…welllll, maybe not.

  2. longtimerangersfan
    February 29th, 2008 at 1:47 pm
    Hmmm, wonder if I could crash at Lundqvist’s pad too…probably a lot of chicks coming and going. Wait, I’m too old for that…welllll, maybe not.

    LOL! Keep it going boys, the debbies actually play tonight and tomorrow seeing as them and Boston play a soccer-like schedule.
    I wouldnt tinker with the lineup yet. Leave it alone.

  3. Who Needs Lohan on

    I think Hollweg should wear a visor on Sunday in honor of our favorite asshole, Downie…

  4. longtimerangersfan on

    I agree that Backman was probably nervous but I don’t think that I have EVER seen a worst first game by anyone! Someone posted that they couldn’t understand why Renney kept putting him out on the ice…hey, Renney IS Renney. He’s the one who kept putting Jagr’s line on the lions share of every power play so they could pass the puck for a minute and a half.

  5. Renney needs to play Strudwick & Orr, sit Backman & Sjostrom. If he can’t figure that out, than the winning is going to his head, and he’ll get kicked in the rear.

  6. Some of you guys are absolutely ridiculous. You’re laying blame on someone (not backman) for something that hasn’t even happened yet. Do you realize you’re doing it? Do you know who you are?

  7. yeah beer, I dont think Prucha should have gotten more ice time than jagr ever, but I wouldn’t have been upset if Shanny wasn’t here last year and I don’t think our scoring would have really sufferred (locker room is another story). Sather just chose to bring in a new wing instead of giving the kids more responsibility. I just hope in the future this doesnt happen as much unless that wing is a true elite player in his prime ie No Hossa next year.

    And Prucha’s production wasn’t a fluke its more about powerplay time which I keep repeating but some choose to ignore. Shanny and now Dawes took his powerplay spot, for better or worse. I’ll move on…for now

  8. pete – I know what you’re saying. And the debate could go back and forth. But that ‘other story/lockeroom’ has to be included to look at the big picture. Scoring wise, we may never know.

  9. yeah undoubtedly its great for some of these kids to interact with someone like shanny just as it must have been great for the kids to play with messier. but hopefully shanny knows when to fold ’em unlike the Captain. shanny is a guy id like to see stick around as a coach but not sure if hed rather work here to detroit of if he even has any interest in coaching

  10. I hope that Colton Orr is healthy enough to be back by Sunday. Jesse Boulerice aka Jesse “Bowl O Rice” was called up Feb 22. A rematch would be awesome to see.

  11. Also .. I think people are too quick to judge Sjostrom and Backman. Imagine you get a transfer at your job from one location to another, would you be at ease the first day you start there? New co-workers, surroundings and adapting to your new boss and the way he likes to get things done. I bet any amount of money that you want to show your new boss that you can hack it there and wants to do your best from day one. I understand that we are New York fans but cut them some slack, it’s been ONE game people!!!!!!

  12. “Renney needs to play Strudwick & Orr, sit Backman & Sjostrom. If he can’t figure that out, than the winning is going to his head, and he’ll get kicked in the rear.”

    Why would you sit Sjostrom? I have to go back and watch the rest of the game but from what I saw he did pretty well. Also I noticed Backman is wearing guards around his skates, so not to make excuses for him, but I think he wears them due to an ankle injury he had either this year or last. I know when I watched him on St. Louis awhile back he wasn’t all that slow and was playing pretty well. I’d give him a chance to settle in before making judgement and I think Sjostrom should be in the lineup every night with Betts and whoever else Renney wants to put on the wing, preferably Orr.

  13. Okay, Sam, for the first time in a long time. Should be either: “There are still two days left before the Rangers face the Flyers, but it sounds like Tom Renney isn’t prepared to mess with his lineup before then.” OR
    “There are still two days left before the Rangers face the Flyers, but it doesn’t sound like Tom Renney is prepared to mess with his lineup before then.”

  14. Maybe that’s why Hank’s letting Sjo-ey stay at his place and not Backman? Maybe he threw his ass out after that mess last night. lol

  15. Zipay had a practice update. Nothing to report. everyone but Mara skated. Hank starts sunday. no definites on anything else.

  16. Beer Me- Great line about Hank throwing Backman out, you stole my thunder. I expect a physical few games coming up think we sit Hollywood if Orr is healthy. I like Hollywood, real nice guy met him a bunch of times after the games and drank wiht him, but he has had enough time to show what he’s got. Let’s see what Shoey can do, besides I like the S.O.B. line instead of the HBO line, if for no other reason as I would fit perfectly on that line, being accussed of being one myself many times.

  17. In fairness, Backman was not bad with the puck and looks like he can skate pretty well; and it’s way too soon to judge him….

  18. I am sorry, but my first day of the job I didn’t do anything equivalent to taking 10 minutes of penalties. That’s like costing your firm thousands (or millions depending on job) of dollars on your first day. So he changes uniforms and suddenly its ok to cut someone’s face open with his stick. i am not saying he is gonna be a complete disaster but these guys are professional athletes, changing jerseys shouldn’t cause you to forgot the rules of the game. Is this gonna be an issue when he has to wear his home jersey? What if we have a third jersey next year? It’s one thing to panic and mess up a pass but taking those kinds of penalties are just lame.

  19. As I said yesterday. You cannot use the 1st day on the job analogy. This was not his 1st NHL game. It was his 1st game with a new team in a new conference. Very nervous.

    Beer Me!!, I ment to say this earlier and forgot. You are giving him 5 games to adjust. We could be in 10th by then because of the teams we are playing. I give him 3 games. Now he has 2 left to put up or sit down.

  20. Who Needs Lohan on

    Whats lame is that we all decided we wouldnt draw any conlcusions after the first game, and now look at some of you. Relax, we are winning games!

  21. Who Needs Lohan on

    Hey, with three left against the Debbies and only 6 points out of first, the division is almost in our own hands (minus their game in hand)

  22. i am not saying he is gonna be a complete disaster but these guys are professional athletes, changing jerseys shouldn’t cause you to forgot the rules of the game. Is this gonna be an issue when he has to wear his home jersey? What if we have a third jersey next year? It’s one thing to panic and mess up a pass but taking those kinds of penalties are just lame.
    ………..

    Haha, thank you, exactly. Let’s not act like he was asked to play a completely different sport or something.

  23. Who Needs Lohan on

    Salty I never said we WOULD win, just that it means we practically control our own destiny (man I hate that saying)

  24. Salty, I do not know if that post was a comment at what I wrote, but I do agree with your post and it is funny. However, I was mearly saying that going to a new team, learning a new system and the style of play is different from East to West. It takes a little while to get used to. Yes I know the West is a faster game so it should not have been hard for him to adjust. IMO: again it was more nerves.

  25. “What if we have a third jersey next year? It’s one thing to panic and mess up a pass but taking those kinds of penalties are just lame.”

    I know it wasn’t meant seriously, but we’re not getting 3rd jerseys next year. The list came out and the Rangers weren’t on it.

  26. RE: Nerves

    Not to you in particular, but to anyone who blames it completely on nerves:

    Have you ever seen an AHL callup put on such an awful show? I would have to believe the level of nervousness there would be about ten times higher, yet you don’t see guys doing that.

  27. good i always hated those third jerseys and one year it seemed we wore them all the time circa the time of the FLY line

  28. I’m not forgetting that malik allowed a breakaway and then hooked him for a penalty. how often have we seen that from the big oaf over the years. people who say he is playing better are fools. he is doing the same things, letting guys skate by him and then hooking. the only thing he is doing differently is trying fewer blind drop passes that got him booed in the past.

  29. The Rangers should never sign or draft another player who doesn’t have exceptional speed. It’s so key in today’s game.

  30. Richard – good point. I think I’m giving too much slack with 5 games. Only b/c that’s almost 1/3 of what we have left. I don’t want to crucify the dude yet though. But there NO better time to show what you can do than vs. div rivals.

    Glad the team is playing well. It’s not good that it took this long. But hopefully we look back on this season as a success. I’m going to stop typing now b/c I’m a few “me’s” deep.

  31. koffy, What if Backman does and we win just like we did last night with him in the lineup? Then what happens?

  32. I live in the sticks, and have seen deer in the middle of the road with more composure than Backman showed in front of the net last night. Was he smoking crack with his uncle Wally?
    On a serious note, while Ottawa is in free fall, has any one noticed how tough their schedule is over the next few weeks. They are in big trouble.

  33. Speaking of schedule…without stats, a note about the schedule as it effects our play.

    Two, three or four weeks ago we had somewhere between 1-5 games played over div/conf teams. We had played more games since the start of the season than the majority of our foes just before the all-star break(and had gotten beaten by most of the western teams we’d play this season). As the schedule eased in our favor, we started to play better hockey. With the record to show it. Maybe more time to practice…gel?

    Finally becoming the team ‘on the ice’ that ‘on paper’ suggests?

  34. Beer Me!

    My sister had to have her s=wisdom teeth taken out, it wasn’t so bad except for one thing,… the anesthetic they used made her feel like she was choking. We got ome and she took the cotton balls out of her mouth, then she felt like she couldn’t breathe, she was practically in tears, thinking she swallowed a cotton ball and she couldn’t tell us what was wrong because she kept gagging. We called the dentist and found out it was just a side effect but it took a few panic stricken moments first…

    moral of the story, find out all the side effects of the drugs, don’t assume as we did) that they would mention the big ones…

  35. I have to admit that I did not have my jersey on for the game last night because I did not get home in time for the start, but it was already 1-0 on that beautiful Jagr to Dubinsky to backhand to back of the net action (it made the top ten on _SportsCenter_, I think #8), so I thought it was OK not to put it on. I know somebody predicted the score of the game correctly, but thought it would be on an empty net goal. Good job Nasty 1!

    No jersey for me on Sunday. I do think this would be a good game for Valiquette, who will probably get two to four depending on the playoff positioning of the team. Based on what I saw from November to January, I almost can’t believe that this team has gone 6-0-2 in their last seven. Just WOW!

  36. Thanks for the advice Ag. I’m set up to have Vicodin as my pain killer afterwards. Worked for my kidney stones, should be ok. After that Pronger story I think I’m ready to go, but I still have 2 weeks.

  37. Spider – 6-0-2 in last 7? and weren’t you the one who was interested in bonfires stats.

  38. Reginald Dunlop on

    that Kaletta clown with Buffalo is becoming the king of late hits…………tonight he got markov to the head….late and unpenalized again……..funny but he didnt do it the other night against the Flyers……..he needs a good ole fashion butt kicking……another reason to abolish the instigator rule…..

  39. Renney needs to ride the hot hand here – Lundqvist must play on Sunday. Rangers have 5 back-to-back sets left this season, so Valliquette will definitely see some time. I see Henrik starting the next 5 games vs PHI, NYI, @ NYI, BOS, @ BUF. They then have 3 days off before they head to Florida for a FLA, TB weekend. Look for Vally to get one of those games. By the time we get to the last 10 vs Atlantic division opponents, the 84-point mark would be nice.

  40. Reginald Dunlop March 1st, 2008 at 12:56 am

    “that Kaletta clown with Buffalo is becoming the king of late hits…………tonight he got markov to the head….late and unpenalized again…”

    I’m glas somebody brought that up because nobody has mentioned
    anything about this hit. When Kaletta skated across the ice and ran Mara head high and the puck was no where near Mara, I thought for sore this was a major penalty. To this day I cannot believe that not only wasn’t a major penalty called but that there was no penalty called, it’s just past ridiculous. Yet Orr gets a major penalty for his collision with cullen. The league needs to seriously in the off season
    do something with these so called refs they have on there payroll because this has been by far the worse refereeing I have ever seen watching hockey.

  41. The thing with changing the way the refs are “run”, is that the NHLPA is REALLY going to have to push to have something changed. I really don’t believe that Campbell or Buttman will say, “yeah, its so bad we have to change it”. And I’m not so sure that Paul Kelly is looking to fight that fight. It seems like they’re more focused on the goalie equip and scheduling. It definitely should be addressed, because it’s that bad. But I don’t think we’ll see the drastic changes that are necessary.

    This time I’m a pessimist

  42. I hear you Beer me, obviously the league IMO doesn’t have there priorities in order. Unfortunately they will wait until somebody gets seriously hurt, what a joke. Than they wonder why they can’t get the casual sport fan to like hockey.

  43. longtimerangersfan on

    Beer Me! Pound for pound hockey players are the toughest SOB’s in the sports world. Forget baseball players…a hang nail sidelines them.

  44. longtimerangersfan on

    I’ve said it before, the two ref system “sucks”! How many times does the ref half way down the ice call a penalty and the one right on top of the play doesn’t? I think that they also don’t call penalties as they are waiting for the other one to call it and then too much time goes by and, voila, nothing is called. Let the linesmen call infractions but keep the ref in charge. It would also free up some more room on the ice as it’s too crowded out there anyway.

  45. longtimefan – complete agreement on baseball vs. hockey players. But why did you bring that up?

    I think the linesman should be able to call penalties when they occur right in front of them. Their primary function should remain the same(calling the lines), but I never saw the reasoning to not allow them to make a call. There’s also no reason why there can’t be a 10second ‘meeting’ among the officials. Similar to the NFL.

  46. All I can say is the league better review this years refereeing because as a die hard hockey fan it’s been embarrassing to say the least.

  47. Even though I’m not a fan of Joe M. analyst of the rangers he said it the other night when rutuu left his feet and drilled Rosival and the puck was no where near him either. The refs let that stuff go but there more concerned about if a guy places his stick parallel to the other players waist.

  48. tomg,

    I was going to bring that hit up as well, but the other night’s game was real clear what the refs looked at. WAlker and Avery got ten minutes for jawig, we got two weak hooking calls made on us and the hits on Rozsival, Callahan, and Dawes went unnoticed (I still say the diff between this hit on Rozi and the one by Kovulchuk is that this time Rozsival didn’t get cut, and they really can’t judge penalties by whether the player was lucky enoug to not be hurt or unlucky enough to be hurt)… I have heard grumblings about a late hit on Sjostrom to, but for the life of me I can’t remember it, I was probably watching play and missed it.

    The officiating needs to get its act togetherand call the dangerous situations, that or do away with the instigator (which btw I am surprised Walker didn’t get something when he dropped the gloves)

  49. Going back to 1 ref only is the temporary solution here. How many times do these idiot refs get in the way of a play? Also agree with Beer on the ‘getting together on a questionable call’ like the NFL.

  50. Beer Me!!, about your removal of your wisdom teeth. Soak some hand towels in water, put them in a ziplock and into the freezer. Do it with about 3-4 of them and rotate appling them to your cheeks. It will help with the swelling and pain. If you have an ice machine in then just put ice into a small ziplock and apply to the face. It will help, did me.

    I hope the drugs and “loss of wisdom” do not affect your posts..HA

  51. Beer Me,

    Also, tea bags inside your mouth to stop the bleeding. (Tastes way better than gauz).

    When I had mine done (I was a teenager)… I woke up and the nurse said:

    “Make sure you take your painkillers… I’ve never seen a doctor yank on teeth like he did on yours.”

    Nice huh?

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