As for the here and now…

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Let’s bear in mind that the Rangers themselves aren’t the ones entertaining thoughts of the Conn Smythe Trophy right now.

I think their outlook can be best summarized by Chris Drury, who when I broached the topic of a potential second round opponent, said he didn’t even want to go there. Yes, the odds strongly favor the Rangers in advancing to Round 2, and yes, it would be in their best interest to “close out this series tonight rather than let it drag on”:http://www.lohud.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080418/SPORTS01/804180415/-1/SPORTS (it would be in my best interest as well on the home front, but I don’t think they care). But that doesn’t mean tonight won’t be a grind.

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As expected, there will be no lineup changes on either side, unless you count Fred Sjostrom playing after undergoing an extreme makeover in Game 4.

It should be fun.

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88 Comments

  1. CHRIS
    I agree, Hollweg is doing absolutely nothing. He barely hits. I cant wait for my big brother, Orr to get back into the lineup. He told me he’s ready to go, but the coaching staff is leaving him out to get into game shape. So who knows. His girlfriend and my future sister-in-law is keeping him good company and keeping his spirits up.
    I AM A RANGER !! LOL i get a kick out of saying that, its so funny when Aves said it, he gets into it, big time.

  2. I’d put Prucha out there as the ‘sacrificial lamb’. But I don’t know if they’d take the bait. If the devs are down by 3 or more with 3min or less to go(I know, optomistic), I’d play that 4th line the rest of the way. Pandolfo said himself that they’re looking for payback…insinuating in the physical nature towards Hank. Is Prucha gonna protect him? I wouldn’t want Prucha to defend me in a F’n pillow fight!

  3. And I need something more,
    To keep on breathing for,
    so give me something to believe…

    LGR!

  4. Hahahaha, hey I Believe. That’s awesome. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this year’s “I am a Ranger” campaign, with the accompanying song by the Bravery. I don’t really like the Bravery, but I do love this song. It’s constantly in my head now.

    I AM A RANGER!

  5. Yeah, that’s a good point with re: to Prucha. I was a fan of Marcel’s for longer than I should have been — might be the same with Prucha. :)

  6. pandolfo is going to do nothing the devils can’t afford to take stupid penaltys he’s just trying to talk shit the ranger need to play Exactly like game 4 they had a perfect mind set no matter how many times the devils tied it up

  7. Putting Orr or Prucha in would be idiotic…Orr is too slow and doesn’t hit (or can’t becasue he’s too slow)..He should be mothballed until September…Prucha would add zero and should only be used on the top 3 lines if there is an injury….

    Hollweg would be out of the line-up already if Renney thought he was doing nothing..Rather, he is doing everything Renney wants….The Rangers are playing a totally different game then the Devils forecheck….He’s hitting when the hit is there, not running around out of position looking for the hit..not taking stupid penalties….He’s usually up high or along the boards on the forecheck…and he’s been playing very good positional hockey..

    Except for Bett’s mindless blunder in game 3, the 4th line has played well…not giving up chances and also putting some offensive pressure on the Devils every game (Not that they will score)…

    And the Rangers are up 3-1..

    Barring an injury, this is the lineup the Rangers should use throughout the entire POs..

  8. joejoe – You think that if this should turn out (by miracle) to be a blow out, they’re not going to start running players? You better believe it. They haven’t handled ANYTHING with class. Thing this would be any different?

  9. “Hahahaha, hey I Believe. That’s awesome. I LOVE LOVE LOVE this year’s “I am a Ranger” campaign, with the accompanying song by the Bravery. I don’t really like the Bravery, but I do love this song. It’s constantly in my head now.”

    I like those commercials, too. I do find a couple of them kinda funny though. I could have sworn I heard these lines:

    Lundqvist – “I am a Ranger!”
    Avery – “I am a rockstar!”
    Dubinsky – “I am a Junior Ranger!”
    Gomez – “I am a Ranger! And who are these people behind me, by the way?”
    Sjostrom – “I have been a Ranger for a couple months!”

  10. If the refs play fair, we should be on the powerplay enough times to make this a solid win. Every article has some devil whining about broduer and “we need to protect him” and “we have to do that to them”. It seems just going to the net has screwed up their gameplan. They are changing every game to try to counteract our play, which is perfect. It shows weakness to me. I love how pathetic they have become this week…

  11. Pandolfo is too smart to do anything that would hurt his team.

    Now Clarkson, Rupp, Asham…Those guys I’d watch out for.

  12. totally. I DO think that they’re disciplined enough not to do anything stupid if the game is close though. Hey, down 2 with a minute to play…you’re not out of it yet.

    I just want everyone to come out of this healthy tonight.

    I just checked ticketmaster.com. Couldn’t find any pairs. Not that I’m looking to go, still saving for the later rounds, but it looks like it’ll be a packed out. Hopefully a sea of blue(shirts).

  13. i don’t see why people are hating on prucha. he is much more effective than hollweg, who is put in for the purpose of hitting and can’t even do that. Prucha, at least using what size he does have an from time to time catches a defender off guard and nails him pretty good. More importantly, Prucha skates his ass off going from man to man applying pressure. Not to mention he also has some moves. Prucha on the line with Sjostrom and Betts could be a very potent “sleeper” line. I hope renney is purposely getting Prucha mad for not playing against the devils and puts him in against a second round opponent IF we make it to the second round that is.

  14. Who Needs Lohan on

    I wouldnt be surprised if Orr goes in last minute for Betts or Shoe String in an effort to add some muscle. Anyone agree?

  15. I don’t think it’s out of the question Lohan. I can’t say I’d be surprised either. Although, I don’t think it’s necessary. I actually hope the game stays close so the goon-ery stays out of the end of this one.

  16. why….wont….this….day…..end!!!

    I’m bored, someone start a controversial topic so we have something to talk about…

  17. Normally I would come after guys on this blog when they say things like, “Put Prucha in for Hollweg,” or “Orr in for Betts or Shoe,” but we are going to stomp the Debbies tonight so I won’t go off on those zany statements.

    LGR. Drop the friekin puck already!

  18. “I wouldn’t want Prucha to defend me in a F’n pillow fight!”

    Prucha IS the pillow.

    Someone said something about Orr not being able to forecheck well. They must’ve not been watching for most of the season, where he outplayed Hollweg so that Hollweg sat on the shelf once Sjostrom arrived and until Orr and Betts both went down. Bottom line is Orr has become a much better skater than he was when he first started, can drill people when he lines them up, can forecheck pretty effectively, and he is still the only guy on the team (besides Strudwick) that can fight worth a lick. As soon as he’s healthy, I say we drop Holeweg.

  19. Should I bring home a 12 pack to watch the game tonight and piss off my wife? Or should I behave, like I did for game 3, and drink soda during the game?

  20. How about the Mara-Backman pairing? They’ve been pretty good!

    Something to note is that Backman has played a lot better since he has been put on the left side. When he first got here, they were putting him on the right (Staal was on left). Maybe that’s why he was so bad at first?

    At this point, I’d consider letting Rozsi walk and keeping Mara. Let Rozsi, Malik, and Strudwick go, and sign a defenseman like Hainsey or Orpik to make us more physical, and bring back Tommy Pock or Andrew Hutchinson to be our 7th man.

  21. 22 – If you don’t bring one home I’ll be pissed dude.

    meatslap – good work. I went over there to look around…they’re not even talking about anything good. Whatever man, they suck.

  22. “I’m bored, someone start a controversial topic so we have something to talk about…”

    Well, I don’t know if this is “controversial”, but it might be worth getting into. I’ve been going at it with someone about this on a different board, so let’s see what we come up with here.

    Consider what Avery did to Brodeur. Now consider a defensive back getting called for faceguarding in football. Why is one just a penalty, but one is a disgrace to the game (by many people’s accounts)? In my opinion, these are almost carbon-copies of each other.

    I’m not saying that what Avery did should be legal forever and ever. Obviously, it was at the time. I have no problem with the NHL deciding to make it illegal (well…not in the middle of the playoffs, but that’s a different argument). I just don’t see why Avery is a disgrace to the game, while the hypothetical football player just gets a flag thrown, and then life moves on.

    Discuss…..

  23. I don’t care if rozy is back or not. I’d rather Mara. He’ll be cheaper too.

    I have a feeling a lot of the guys want struds back. He’s as cheap as they come to help along the youngsters. I don’t know if that justifies a spot on the roster. Sh-t, if Pearn goes to FLA, struds should go buy some suits.

  24. Don’t worry beer, I won’t disappoint. Salty, the dark skinned man comment is the best.

  25. Anyone going to the viewing party tonight? I don’t usually go to those types of things, so I was wondering if I could get a “Go, they’re are fun and they serve beer” or “You’re better off watching on your couch where you can go through your rituals and punch something if necessary”.

    Insight appreciated.

  26. IF the question has anything to do with Beer… the answer is always… More BEER!

    ALWAYS.

    “DO we need more beer?” “YES… More beer”

    “Do you think this will be enough beer?” “NO… More beer”

    “I’m going to give blood… should I drink a beer before I go?” “No… drink two.”

    etc. etc. etc.

    By the way… wouldn’t tonight be a great night for the KILLER INSTINCT to show up in this team?

    How many games have they not put teams away when they should have (or their futile power-play wouldn’t enable them to)?

  27. Who Needs Lohan on

    Newman, I was just saying I wouldnt be surprised if he did that since we are being threatened just to add some “just in case” muscle, thats all. Didnt say that is what I would do.

  28. “By the way… wouldn’t tonight be a great night for the KILLER INSTINCT to show up in this team?”

    Good point. But I wouldn’t want to start a run-n-gun showing tonight. It’s just not us.

    We need to continue to play OUR game until June.

  29. Who Needs Lohan on

    Hey, was thinking about something….. I feel like you dont see much in the way of cheap shots if a game is out of hand AND the series is about to be over. In other words, if this was Game 3 and there was a lop sided score, then some dirtiness could come out. But to think you will have to shake the hand of the man you just did something dirty to, 3 minutes later???? Maybe I am being too idealistic, but dont you think there is some truth to that?

  30. Killing instinct for this team is burying our chances and continuing to make smart defensive decisions.

    Beer is 100 percent right. We have to play OUR game and OUR game only. Finishing them off for us might be a 1-0 game, which personally, I can live with just fine.

  31. Players play, I think that’s reading into it too much Lohan. That doesn’t happen too often at the end of any series. If anything, I would expect them to call the dogs off if the game was out of reach.

    What a black eye for the league that would be though.

  32. Well boys. I’m outta here. Gots some cookin to do for a party tomorrow, so I won’t be around till later on in the weekend. Enjoy the game tonight. Hopefully we’ll see some handshakes.

    I’m very interested to see who our ‘star’ is tonight. Hank? Gomer? Avery? Jags? Dubi?

    Any one of these guys could be this series’ mvp.

    LET’S GO RANGERS!!!!!!!!!

  33. The wife called to tell me that I still have 3.5 hours to wait…and instead of “I love you” she said “Game on”

  34. Beer and Brandon…

    BY ALL MEANS I AGREE. 1000%

    I certainly did NOT mean run and gun killer instinct. I mean take care of business and play SOLID and smothering hockey.

    Playing “our” game would be perfect.

  35. Who Needs Lohan on

    Im just saying that I wouldnt do harm to someone, especially if I knew I had to look him in the eye in a few minutes. It could get dirty if the Debs had a 3+ goal lead late….

  36. DB: Now thats a keeper of a wife!

    Mine said to me in an email ten min ago, “let’s go Rangers” and she hates hockey

    Thank you Lord for understadning non hockey loveing wives

  37. Killer Instinct does not neccesarily mean a “risky run and gun” game IMO. It just means NOT letting up, and NOT getting comfortable, especially immediately after a goal. Never taking the foot off the pedal. Keeping the puck deep in the attack zone until the NJD legs turn into soft red jello.

    I’m about to start barking at work I’m so worked up.

  38. Salty

    Love your dark skinned weekes comment
    there getting pissy over on the NJ blogs now.
    HAHA, F’EM!
    LEts go Rangers
    Talk to you all on Monday

  39. True or False. The Rangers win 3-0 and the First and Second stars of the game in Neward are Martin Brodeur and John Madden? HA

    Funny because it’s more than likely to happen.

  40. “Someone said something about Orr not being able to forecheck well. They must’ve not been watching for most of the season, where he outplayed Hollweg so that Hollweg sat on the shelf once Sjostrom arrived and until Orr and Betts both went down. Bottom line is Orr has become a much better skater than he was when he first started, can drill people when he lines them up, can forecheck pretty effectively, and he is still the only guy on the team (besides Strudwick) that can fight worth a lick. As soon as he’s healthy, I say we drop Holeweg.”

    You forgot that Orr doesn’t take penalties, thats the key. Sure hes not the best skater, but just because he’s slow doesn’t mean he’s bad. He knows when to hit and when to drop back and be in position. Plus with the puck, he’s better than hollweg. Now that being said, Hollweg has been better in the last few games and I wouldn’t mind him staying in, but when Orr is ready, he should go just because of his defensive positioning and the fact that he plays a smarter game.

  41. Guys please don’t question my devotion to this blog but I’m finding it hard of late to keep up so if my comments don’t “fit in” please take it easy on me and forgive me…
    patients…lots of sick people…

  42. As for predictions. Mara and Backman will score tonight. Mark my words! LET’S GO RANGERS!

  43. “I don’t know how any team could be interested in Pearn. He was our PP coach, and with all of the firepower that our team has, our PP is just awful.”

    Notice though that when the young kids were out there, the PP was pretty solid. Not to defend Perry but I think it was more the older vets/stars not really playing the system. Renney and Perry always talked about moving around on the PP to open up options and keep the shooting lanes open and those guys never did. Dubi and Dawes and them seemed to do a lot more of that.

  44. Going to the viewing party tonight – first time I’ve ever been to one of these. Too bad the $10 cost does not include open bar (but hey you get free popcorn!).

  45. Guys I wonder if Renney’s system is also taught in Hartford…making Dubi and Dawes and the other youngsters better able to play the system?

  46. HOSPO

    Goes to show how much you know. Orr needs to be in the lineup, he throws more hits then this useless loser who we kept over Orty !! Plus Orr can drop one of these half assed tough guys like Assam, and Wupp, and Cwackson if he has the balls to fight Orr.

    Orr is way better then Hollywood. Cwackson would beat him up. When Janssen was in the lineup who kept him from storming Hank after Aves stormed Marty, it was Orr !! He gave him a mini beat down, but kept him in check.

    I just hope when Orr is ready to go, Renney will do the smart thing and put him in.

    Just like the two fat guys in the commercial said “IM WEADY TA GO”

    Anybody noticed the guy on the left that said that was crying ???

  47. “True of False:

    Martina will spend his off season crying tiny little french tears”

    False, he will spend it getting to the bottom of multiple Haagen-Daaz and Ben and Jerry’s containers.

    “Renney and Perry always talked about moving around on the PP to open up options and keep the shooting lanes open and those guys never did. ”

    Then it shows that he’s bad for two reasons:

    1) He can’t get his players to do what he wants
    2) He doesn’t have the stones to bench them when they don’t listen.

  48. Im disapointed in a way with Dawes. He dominated Martnia, but only has an empty net goal, that was a gimme, cause there was nobody to stop him. He needs to step up and put some numbers up.

    But other the that he has been good, physical, working hard.

    They gotta put the kid on the PP especially 5 on 3, i can see him and Gomer working down low. Dawes was always a better passer then goal scorer in my opinion.

  49. Staal –

    If the Rangers are as well-organized as they lead on, I would imagine Hartford plays a similar style to the Rangers. It clearly works for the kids at the AHL level…Hartford is always right in the thick of the Championship race.

  50. Doodie, stop. I’d say the movement was pretty good on Gomez’ Power Play goal, no? The Rangers have scored I think 3 or 4 power play goals in this series. Give the coaching criticism a rest, please.

    This is exactly what I’m talking about. People literally are trying to dig up reasons out of nowhere to criticize Renney. Can we wait until he does something wrong, please?

  51. Just on the little Debbies blog…seems that we not only take over the Pebble but we have over ran the blog too…some funny Sh** over there.

  52. I just want the Rangers to score a goal early in the game and then have the game end 1 minute after. I don’t even want to watch the whole game…. just score and move on the the next round!

    Here come the butterflies in the stomach….

  53. I’m not even worried about this game… I think the Rangers will do this pretty easily. (hard fought game, but win by a couple goals, not a squeaker).

    I say 4-2 and on to the next round!

  54. Im standing here in line at the ziegfield and there has been a line since 5:00. We’ve had one potvin chant and Bobby Granger is working the line. Bring ’em on!

  55. SeamusORiley on

    the latest “I am a Ranger commercial”‘s ending…

    has Sean Avery been cut from it?

    I saw the ending and there appears to be some judicious editing…

  56. Jumping in real quick here while there’s baked ziti goin.

    Great limerick Literation…if that’s what you call it.

    Staal wart – You’re not a real fan. You know you got the David Putty face goin right now. Just kiddin bro!

    Cold beers goin down nice. Gotta take it easy though, I gotta make sure I can see with both eyes.

    I AM A RANGER!

    Oh yea, that reminds me. I was listening to Krock on my way home and the had a rangers promo with a bunch of sound bytes. I called up and got through right away. If you heard anyone yell “I AM A RANGER” FOLLOWED BY “LET’S GO RANGERS!” And then a car horn honking to the chant’s cadence. THAT WAS BEER ME!

  57. onecupin67years on

    I have it on good authority that the Devils don’t have a chance…The POPE is in NY !

  58. Doodie Machetto on

    “Doodie, stop. I’d say the movement was pretty good on Gomez’ Power Play goal, no? The Rangers have scored I think 3 or 4 power play goals in this series. Give the coaching criticism a rest, please.

    This is exactly what I’m talking about. People literally are trying to dig up reasons out of nowhere to criticize Renney. Can we wait until he does something wrong, please?”

    So… 3 or 4 goals this series makes up for our season long powerless play? And to be clear, I’m not saying anything about Renney here, this is purely Perry the Power Play coach Pearn. Renney has a harder job, teaching every player to play in a system, come up with line comboes, things that have to consider the entire game. Pearn just has the ultimate X and O job. And as I said, with our firepower, it should’ve been a gimme.

  59. doodie, its easier said than done. You can’t just bench 4 stars because they don’t run it 100% the way you want. I mean gomez and drury are near elite centers and jagr and shanny are first ballot hofs. You got to try to get them to run it but if they start to alternate from it there isn’t much you can do but hope that it works out. The kids are easier because they are still trying to make it and have more to learn so they listen.

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