Gift wrapped with a bow


I am not privy to the marketing meetings that take place at NHL headquarters in Manhattan, but I have to imagine this second-round clash between the Rangers and Penguins is exactly what they wanted. I know I’m excited, and I’m just a guy with a laptop.


But if the bigger picture is just two of the NHL’s hottest teams squaring off for a right to advance to the Eastern Conference finals, consider some of the subplots:

<li>Crosby, Malkin and Co. vs. Henrik Lundqvist: Admit it, the King shutting down that offensive juggernaut John Madden is one thing, but a chance to test himself against the league’s most potent forwards is what careers are defined by. And judging by the regular season, Lundqvist has room for improvement. He allowed five goals to Malkin, while Crosby hit the Rangers up for one goal and seven assists.

<li>Staal vs. Staal: The Rangers’ Marc and Pittsburgh’s Jordan spoke by phone on Tuesday night after the match-up was secured. The ground rules were set: there will be no shared meals, and they probably won’t even talk much. As for Mom and Pop Staal, the pair’s parents will likely be the most conflicted fans in either building.

“My mom said she already feels sick,” Marc said.

<li>Jagr vs. the boos: The captain has been booed incessantly in Pittsburgh every since he was traded away by the Penguins in 2001, but this is the first time he’ll face his old team in a playoff series.

“I’ll have to wait and see how it’s going to be. It’s probably going to be worse than it’s been in the regular season,” Jagr said. “It shouldn’t make any difference. I’ll answer it this way: if we have the lead, if we’re going to win the game, they’re not going to boo that much. If we’re losing, they will.”


One of my own personal favorite subjects in my favorite magazine. Here’s “Nick Paumgarten in The New Yorker on Sean Avery”:


Jagr and Marek Malik were engaged in an extended conversation in Czech while a group of reporters were waiting around their lockers.

“I just asked him who we’re playing in the next round,” Jagr cracked.


Pet peeve of the day: On SportsCenter this morning, Barry Melrose was giving Alexander Ovechkin grief for passing up a shot in the third period last night and trying to set up Sergei Fedorov all alone in front instead.

Please. It was a brilliant pass that Fedorov just narrowly missed. The shot by Ovechkin, meanwhile, would have been from the top of the circles — not exactly a lay-up.

I suppose I shouldn’t complain. At least they were talking about hockey.

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  1. Parros, I was thinking the same thing. Isn’t it bad enough we have to see that face during every commercial break with the Gatorade ad?

  2. Parros: At least he’s “in position”. Consider it bulletin board material.

    I did not realize Malkin had 5 goals on us this year, and now looking back I think I remember he actually had a hat trick against us?


  3. Repost:

    No two ways about it… this will be a test for this squad. The firepower (on the Pens), the Refs, their own tendancies to sometimes beat themselves.

    If we play “our” game and Hank plays out of his mind we can win. I feel a 7 gamer coming… big time.

    One thing I’d like to see is our shots getting on goal… I know that we were trying to beat a great-ish goaltender with pinpoint accurate shots in the last round… but we missed the net quite a bit. Love to see those hit twine or keeper in this series.

    It’s going to be a battle. I really feel like game 1 is the most important… if the Pens smell blood winning game 1 we could be in trouble.

  4. I agree – BOO Cindy Crosby every chance we get !
    It’s our duty as Ranger fans.
    I’ll do it from AZ – you’ll hear me, I guarantee it !

  5. I came across this SI NHL Player Poll regarding the worst skater in the NHL.

    Derian Hatcher, Flyers D …… 1%
    Derek Boogaard, Wild LW …… 10%
    Georges Laraque, Penguins RW …… 9%
    Colton Orr, Rangers RW …… 9%
    Hal Gill, Penguins D …… 6%
    Aaron Downey, Red Wings RW …… 5%
    Donald Brashear, Capitals LW …… 4%
    Brian McGrattan, Senators RW …… 3%
    Raitis Ivanans, Kings LW …… 3%
    Trent Hunter, Islanders RW …… 2%

    [Based on a survey of 365 NHL players]

    FAST FACTS: Players could not vote for a teammate or for a goalie…. All of the top five vote-getters except Boogaard were still active in the playoffs through Sunday…. Laraque and Gill were the only teammates among the top 10 vote-getters…. Fifteen of the top 20 are forwards…. Hatcher, 35, is the eldest of the top five vote-getters; Boogaard, 25, is the youngest.

  6. I’d think the NHL would’ve wanted to see Ovechkin/Crosby and then an Original 6 Rangers/Canadiens more than the current setup.

    That being said, they might be worried that Ovechkin outplay their little bundle of joy.

    Anyway, interesting plot lines throughout, it’s going to be a great series.

    PS – Anyone still saying Orr can’t skate hasn’t seen him since 05-06. That kid is the most improved skater on the team (not saying much, because he had the longest way to go). He may not be fast, but he gets there and arrives in ill humor.

  7. If Colton Orr is healthy do the Rangers play him?


    I’d certainly keep him ready to go for Game 2 if our guys are getting roughed up. I don’t think he’s healthy though, we haven’t heard anything in a while on him from Sam…

  8. Hey peppery, now that you seem to be an active “commentor” and are currently involved on our (Sam’s) little forum, are you enjoying?
    I’m enjoying your comments, so thanks for contributing to the ongoing discussion

  9. I’d think the NHL would’ve wanted to see Ovechkin/Crosby and then an Original 6 Rangers/Canadiens more than the current setup.

    That being said, they might be worried that Ovechkin outplay their little bundle of joy.


    That would have been no contest. Although it would allow them to paint Crosby the superior when the Stacked Penguins beat the Just Surviving Caps.

    They are psyched about this match up. Everyone is.

  10. I’d play Orr right off the bat. Who’s going up against Laraque, if not Orr?

    Laraque isn’t like Clarkson, Asahm or Rupp…If that guy wants to take your head off, he’ll go through a linesman to do it.

  11. reginald dunlop on

    you think the devils and lou cried??? wait to you see whats in store this round…..crosby whines with the best of them

  12. Nasty Voice of Reason on

    I am excited about this match up. I just wish it started tomorrow night and not Friday.

    I wonder if we ended up playing Montreal if Prucha would have seen some playing time on the 4th line?

  13. Staal – As long as the comments stay relevant, I enjoy participating.

    If the convo gets sidetracked, I get agitated, lol.

    I guess I just can’t wait for the Rangers to start playing again, and need to talk about them until the puck drops. I don’t have the patience to talk about anything else haha.

  14. Nasty Voice of Reason on

    Cindy does cry and awful lot. He has the kind of face you just want to smash in with a rusty hammer. Seriously. Dubi looks young, but Cindy looks like Alvin from the Chipmunks.

  15. I’d go with Orr right off the bat. In fact, I’d start that line.

    nasty – Good point about prucha. He’s probably wondering the same. lol

    Sam – Hradek agreed with Melrose on shooting that puck. 100% of the shots you don’t take, don’t go in. (#99) but you know that I’m sure. And when they don’t go in in a game 7, you don’t go on. Shooting was the right play.

  16. Nasty Voice – I don’t think Prucha plays this season, unless we get to the Finals.

    I can’t see Hollweg or Orr playing against the Sharks, Stars or Red Wings (those are the teams I feel have the best shot coming out of the west). We need to have all the fire-power we can get, and while Prucha’s season has been dismal, Hollweg doesn’t have a prayer in the world of scoring. If Renney wants to roll 4 lines (which he does), they all need to be able to score against those teams.

  17. Peppery, but if Laraque does go headhunting, he more than likely will take a penalty, assuming we don’t retaliate.
    And if he started running our guys, hopefully we run Crosby and Malkin.

  18. Beer – Just wondering if you saw the play (Ovechkin)? He had 2 guys sliding into his lane, and on top of that, it’s the ultimate decoy. Everyone and their mother (including Fedorov, apparently) thought he was shooting there. I think passing was just as good an option.

    Of course the Caps lose and he gets criticized, if they win he’s a genius. I think all the questioning of if it was the right play is with the benefit of hindsight.

  19. Staal – Not so much worried about Laraque head hunting on his own, but he certainly won’t take Avery treating Fluery like he did Broduer, and he won’t let linesman stop him.

    It only takes one solid beating to get your point across, and if it’s enough to get Avery off his game, then it’s worth it for Laraque to take the 2 for instigating, 5 for fighting and 10 minute misconduct.

  20. Why not take a penalty? I don’t see any team in this league let alone still in the play-offs fearing our PP. I just don’t.

    This is the reason I’ve been so up in arms about it ALL season.

  21. Maybe they have spent some time during this off week working on the Power Play? I sure as hell hope they have.

  22. Orr should be healthy for round two (that was from his own lips before game five against the devils)
    I think Orr is fine as a skater. He isn’t the greatest or fastest but he gets to the puck and when he actually plays it (instead of the man) he knows what to do with it.
    SO voting him one of the worst skaters is kind of off, imo. Renney has sad numerous times that when Orr came to the RAnegrs he was told he had to be more of a hockey player and not just a goon and he has done that. He has come along way in the past two years. I would put him out there instead of Hollweg. Fourth line of Sjostrum- betts- Orr.

  23. Yeah the only reason everyone is saying Ovechkin was foolish to not shot is cause it didn’t work. Had he shot and it not go in they would be pointing out that Fedorev had an empty net. CAn’t win with some people.

    ANd yeah, a week to work on the power play that is what we needed!! If our pp was even mildly productive we would have been in first place! (Not that I’m complaining I like beating the Devs in their own building as a first round victory)

  24. i cant see any circumstance where avery would fight laraque, too big of a mismatch there

  25. I will Booo him from Levittown for road games and Molly Wee for home games!!!!!!
    By the way anyone who doesn’t have tickets Molly Wee is a great bar with good prices the owners are Ranger fans and it is right around the corner form the garden. They put sound on for games (though being that we are on versus and NBC that may not be a plus) I like going for home layoff games cause then I can come out and celebrate with the other Ranger fans!

  26. And Orr doesn’t have the rep Hollweg does so he won’t automatically get the harshest penalties possible…

    Maybe Sam could tell us if they’ve been working on the pp, not give away any real in depth info just an assurance that it is being sorted out perhaps?

  27. peppery – nope. Just going on text in articles. And hindsight is a wonderful thing, ain’t it? But if there’s a player in the league that should think shoot(and do it) before pass, its GR8. Now they’re done. So it’s all moot I guess at this point.

    I don’t think the pens are going out there looking for a fight. Neither are we. If it happens, it happens. I don’t think either side is looking to ‘send a message’ with a fight. Retaliation to a poor hit, sure.

    I’m so tired of talking about stuff that COULD happen. I need to see a game already.

  28. Wow Leetch2 hates Crosby so much he for once is using captial letters. I don’t like the whole I am a Ranger thing it is a ripoff of the Isles I am an Islander crappola. The Rangers are better than that. Hey at least they aren’t making commercials with Dolan’t retarded bastard son Bobby Granger. Espn shows whatta joke it is by continuing to employ Barry Melrose. He broke down the Rangers-Pens series by saying Malik is playing great and will be used to try to shut down Crosby lmao.

  29. Has anyone seen predictions outside of the NY area predicting the Rangers to win this series? I’ve see Pens in 6 everywhere else.

  30. A few thoughts…

    On the Ovechkin non-shot. If he shot the puck, there’s a good chance it would have been blocked or saved by Biron. If Federov had gotten his stick on that pass though, that would have been a goal, no doubt. I’d go for a chance at a bang-in play than a shot through traffic any day.

    I totally agree with Peppery. The league would have loved a Sid/Alex the Gr8 match-up, even if it was uneven. Then you would have had 2 Original 6 teams playing again with the Rangers and Habs.

    Also, people make it seem like we have an impossible task here. We’ve done great against Pittsburgh. During the season, the home team won 7 out of 8 games. The exception? Rangers winning in PA. Henrik is 12-6-3 against Pittsburgh all time. That’s not too shabby. They’re a challenge definitely, but we’re not to be overlooked either.

  31. Molly Wee’s is the bar Larry goes to, he told us about it, but he goes before the games so we haven’t met up with him there yet…

  32. Beer me-I am imaging it! :-)

    22-It is in fact a bar he goes to before games yes it is! Good place. The food is good to but it is NYC prices. Nice selection for those of age :-) Really nice staff. I have been there three or four times now and have had a good time every time! Signed RAngers stuff on the walls. its a cool place.

  33. Like I said before, I think that most that are picking Pitt in this series are not recognizing the fact a team full of Marek Malik’s and Ryan Hollweg’s probably coulda beat the Sens. Having to take the ice was just a formality to end their season. Carolina or buffalo would have been better competition. I think it will hurt Pitt.

  34. I know we did good enough against Fluery early on that they went with COnklin agiast us for two games later on. I would rather face Fluery than Conklin but I can’t find specific stats unless I go game by game . . . since there is only 8 hold on and give me a minute. . . . This is much better than wrting a thesis anyway

  35. March 31 Fleury 2 goals on 27 shots ot winner for Rangers both pp goals

    March 30 Fleury 1 goal on 27 shots it was a pp goal Rangers lost

    March 18 Conklin 5 goals on 30 shots all even strength Rangers won

    Jan 14 Conklin 1 goal with 44 shots and our goal was a pp goal

    Dec 18 Sabourin so that doesn’t matter

    Nov 17 Fleury 4 goals out of 26 shots 1 shorthanded goal and 1 pp goal

    Nov 8 Fleury 4 goals on 39 shots 2 pp goals

    Oct 23 Fleury in net and 0 goals on 36 shots.

    SO Fleury was Rangers won 3 and lost 2 we had 6 pp goals and 1 shorthanded

    And COnklin was 1-1 with 1 pp goal.

    Hope that helps.

  36. We are not the same team that we were during the regular season. We are finally clicking on all cylinders and can still be better. I think people are not showing us the respect we deserve, and I don’t think that is a bad thing. Let them take a lightly.

  37. Absolutley think if Orr ready to go, he gets the nod over Hollweg. Hollweg does nothing for me. Teams don’t fear him. Orr would keep the other teams’ punks in check. And, he plays reasonably smart on the ice.

    I think the key to the series (in addition to the aggressive D in the slot I mentioned earlier) will be the young kids throwing the body like Dubi, Cally, Dawes, Avery, etc. They gotta make the Pens feel like they have to get rid of the puck quickly.

    And someone take a shot at Crosby please. A nice elbow on an open ice hits sounds good to me. Heck, leave your feet for 2 mins whatever, as long as it is an effective hit.

  38. “Leave your feet for 2 mins” means take a 2 min penalty if necessary to deliver a crushing hit…it doesn’t mean “float in the air for 2 mins while making the hit.”

  39. I agree. We take the puck much better than the Pens do. We have guys who will hit and make them uncomfortable with the puck.

  40. I agree with all of you!
    1. we are not getting the respect we deserve and thats ok
    2. Orr is better than Hollweg- he gets more respect he lays better and he fights better
    3. SOmeone has to hit Sid the Kid

  41. Jorek you are a darling thanks for pulling out the number and summary.

    Those calling for hurting Crosby. I’m with you, but I want him playing. It’s not the same to beat a Crosbyless PIT, just like it would not have been the same to beat the Devils with Kevin Weekes in net.

  42. Salty plus they are already saying how he would have won the Hart Trophy if not for his injury, I don’t want to hear about how the Pens would have done if not for those bully Rangers…

  43. Thanks Salty, Ag helped me with it she is a stats machine!

    But as much as I don’t like the guy I don’t want to see Crosby hurt. I wantt o see him hit and have to suck it up and take it like a man. Beating Pittsburg is nothing if you don’t beat Crosby too.

  44. No offense here, but I hope the Rangers aren’t as focussed on Crosby as the folks around here today.

    Malkin is as big a threat. Goals per game this year goes to Malkin. Malkin will be nominated for the Hart. Malkin is a big dude. Malkin produced vs NYR this season. Malkin, if left ungaurded, will destroy us. The more time NYR spends focussing on Crysob the more of a chance we don’t advance.

  45. Sam I agree with you on the Ovechkin pass. Whats Melrose talking about? That was a great pass and just missed by Fedorov. But what do I know about hockey, I’m not Barry Melrose. As for this series, It should be a lot of fun to watch. Hopefully the refs can call a fair series, and if the Rangers can stay out of the box I think they got a great shot at taking this series.

  46. Ok so here is a funny story. Ag and I went to the store earlier to run errands. We get out of the car and a guy in the parking lot says “IS that your car?”
    I thought to myself “NO . You caught me I take all my stolen vehicles to pathmark.”

  47. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    I will have to agree with everyone early on and say that Cindy’s horse-nostrils are offensive. We have to see his buck teeth every commercial break on versus and, to be frank, this picture belongs right up on his wall next to his cousin, Mr. Ed.

  48. How can we not focus on crosby he is the next great one the gretaest thing on skates since . . .well the Great one. He is the greatest hockey player ever and the face of the new NHL. Everything is baout Crosby. He is reebok- seriously they gave him the company cause he is so great. He should win every award every year. Without him hockey wouldn’t even exist. Everything he does should be on a highlight reel. He even sits on the bench better than other hockey players. The guy is just in a world of his own.

    Just listen to versus and NBC they will tell you all you need to know

  49. And Crysob is just the hot topic of the day. Besides the obvious deadly threat in Malkin, lest we also forget *Marion frickin’ Hossa*. Say what you will about being invisible in the playoffs… that is never something to count on…

    Let’s also not forget a certain frenchman Pascal Dupuis who seems to be another frickin’ Ranger Killer and always seems to play very, very well against us.

  50. Except Dupuis can’t stop. Watching him skating around makes me think of the kid in MIghty Ducks 2 that didn’t know how to stop but was very very fast.

  51. “How can we not focus on crosby he is the next great one the gretaest thing on skates since . . .well the Great one. He is the greatest hockey player ever and the face of the new NHL. Everything is baout Crosby. He is reebok- seriously they gave him the company cause he is so great. He should win every award every year. Without him hockey wouldn’t even exist. Everything he does should be on a highlight reel. He even sits on the bench better than other hockey players. The guy is just in a world of his own.

    Just listen to versus and NBC they will tell you all you need to know”

    And he invented the internet!

  52. Yeah and Avery will get a penalty for just sitting on the bench. I have a feeling we’re going to be very unhappy with the officiating in this ENTIRE series.

  53. Want something to kill the time?

    Google something like “Crosby Sucks” or “I hate crosby”. It’s so fun to see fans of 29 teams hate this … guy?

  54. Well its the NHl’s fault as far as I’m concerned. If they had let us make up our own minds about the kid we would like him better. Instead we have him crammed down our throats at every moment. We are told how great he is and it seems like the NHL will do whatever they have to to prove it to us. Personally I have nothing against Crosby except for the way the NHL treats him. They ignore (or tried can’t anymore) players like Ovechkin. They still ignore Malkin most of the time.

    Yeah I anticipate the officiating sucking for this series.

  55. Yeah and Avery will get a penalty for just sitting on the bench. I have a feeling we’re going to be very unhappy with the officiating in this ENTIRE series.


    I wish I could already shut up the people who will be crying about this forever. Yes, it will be in their favor. Crying about it will not do a thing about it, why even worry about it. The Rangers damn well already know the refs are going to give Crysob the benefit of the doubt and be paying super close attention to the likes of Sean Avery. It’s expected, and they should be prepared to play through that and by no means be expecting “fairness”…and if they actually get fair calls they will….just be that much better.

  56. Sam – you are right – that was an awesome pass and if he just got his stick on it – GOAL and we are heading to Montreal – Biron was four or five feet out b/c Ovechkin is such a scorer leaving him nothing to shoot at

  57. I don’t know why the link I’m trying to post isn’t showing up, I don’t know if it’s my problem of the blog. or both.

    but…. If you want to add a little side-plot to the series. It was Laraque when he was in EDM that Avery ALLEGEDLY called a “monkey”. Just incase you needed anything else to pay attention to.

    Also…Re: GR8 taking the shot or not… How many pucks deflected past Hank off of Rangers? Take the shot. It’s the playoffs, and THAT was you’re last chance.

  58. Beer Me! April 23rd, 2008 at 2:37 pm
    Want something to kill the time?
    Google something like “Crosby Sucks” or “I hate crosby”. It’s so fun to see fans of 29 teams hate this … guy?


    the “…” had me practically fall out of my chair laughing…
    all right Salty I will shut up about the inevitibly awful officiating accorded the broadway blueshirts in the second series of the showdown for success…

    I need a game…

  59. on another note I have been friend requested by a couple of FLyers fans on myspace, anyone who has seen my page cannot help but notice I am a Ranger fan… I wonder do they hate the Pens that much that they are siding ith the Rangers?

  60. Ah nothing personal or anything Agravaine…it’s the most endless argument ever though and we here already know what to expect… the Rangers can still only blame themselves if they go on the penalty kill…EVERYONE in the world knows to expect the calls to go PIT’s way… gotta play with that in mind and rise above.

  61. Ag- There are quite a few bandwaggon from other team fans. I’ve had more Senators fans tell me they are supporting the Rangers…its like Jorek said he’s been so forced fed..that and the sobbing he does when calls don’t go his way…

  62. S,

    yea I know what Jo is talking about she and I both agree on the force fed thing…


    I know its nothign personal and I agree since all the fans have an idea of how the games might be called the boys are ridiculous if they don’t pick up on that…

  63. Jorek is a girl. I know it doesn’t look that way but Jo is short for Johanna and the rest of the name is a mix of initials . . .

    Yeah I suppose I will try and not complain about the refs. But just cause I know its gonna happen doesn’t mean I won’t complain about it. But year Salty in the ed no matter how badly things are called that what we have pk guys for. Unless the refs wave off our goals and wave on theirs we can’t totally blame them. But we can curse them with every breath!

  64. Unless the refs wave off our goals and wave on theirs we can’t totally blame them. But we can curse them with every breath!



  65. This waiting till Friday thing is starting to kill me. I can’t wait! Can anybody explain to me (other than scheduling conflicts) why the 2 teams that went 7 games start a day earlier, and the 2 teams that ended early (4 and 5 games) have to wait an extra day???

  66. Wow we really need a new post from Sam anything! This is worse tan that five day off break we had during the season.

  67. The reason for the Friday/Sunday schedule is to have Sissy and the Pens on NBC and to have the Canadiens on Hockey Night in Canada on Saturday night. Get ready for Emrick/Milbury/Pierre Maguire overload!

  68. Post game interviews up on
    Dubie- gave a very ambigous answer to whetehr he likes the long rest or not. ANd he is actually starting to get facial hair. Actually he was ambiguous on just about everything! Good job Dubie!
    Henrik- First period will be important to get going and he pointed out that both teams have had a long rest. SOmeone said “Henrik here comes Crosby on a breakway what happens?” and Henrik answered “I make the save”. Said that Pitts is more skilled than jersey.( has said like three times Pitts is a better team than jersey)
    Staal- The Staal brothers will not be speaking unitl the series is over!! He has a little red beard forming.
    Shanahan- is definitly shaving! (Isn’t that bad luck??) And didn’t say anything funny :-( Did say that history will tell about Crosby right now he is on pace to be one of the greatest hockey players ever and he is very respected around the league for what he can do.

  69. NBC has a game on Saturday, too, so it’s more likely what Rob C said about HNIC.

    Will the Rangers fans chant *Ciiiiiiiiindyyyyyyyy* like they did *Maaaaaarrrrrrrrtyyyyyyyy* in the first round? Please?

  70. I wonder if the NHL will create another rule or penalty in this round just like the one they did with the NO SCREENING BRODEUR RULE.

  71. ah thanks Jason… the Penguins are handing out white t shirts at the games so all their fans will wear white and they can have a “white out”

  72. Who Needs Lohan on

    Hearing a lot of you guys saying one of the keys to this series is us crashing the net. I hope we are a bit careful with that strategy. Fleury does give up a lot of rebounds, but I think a lot of them are given up with a purpose. I remember on at least a few occasions us crashing the net, the puck gets sent out to the circles and an odd man rush against develops. I think you would all agree that could be dangerous for us. My thinking, send the wings in hard but maybe leave the center in the high slot for the big juicy rebounds and a head start back towards the defensive end. Any thoughts?

  73. Wow they have like press conference type set up for off day interviews!
    On Friday the Pens are having a whiteout (they are giving out white tee shirts for everyone to wear)
    Crosby- said Henrik is great! Rangers block a lot of shots! So the Penguins gotta shoot a lot. Said the Rangers are just like every other team. Doesn’t rate agitators and Pittsburg has their own. He doesn’t think Avery will effect him. Thinks the fans will continue to boo Jagr.
    Coach Therrien- Pens hve had a productive week. We all know each other both teams are good. So detail is crucial. Says we play well defensively and so do the Pens. And we have offensive weapons and so do the Pens. The Pens take ride in their defense and were third in the conference in GAA. Says are defense is young but good and very mobile. They had two days off and have built up practices to stay in shape and be ready for Friday. They wantt o do the same thing they did against Ottawa but we don’t open up the way the Sens do so it will be tougher. Goalie is key and Rangers have a good one and they are comfortable with Fleury. Never easy to contain Jagr he is a world class player and all five huys on the ice will have to stick to plan.

    And thats all they had.

  74. Yeah Lohan good point!

    Firat round we ad the don’t screen brodeur rule. In second round we will have the don’t play defense on Crosby rule: Any attemt to turn either towards or away from Crosby in a matter that wll invovle removing the puck from his stick or preventing him from getting the puck on his stick will be deemed unsportsman like and result in a five minute major penlty. If a layer receives two of these in a game he will be given a 10 minute misconduct. Furthermore any attempt to block a shot taken by Crosby on the part of a skater (blocking shot) or goalie (doing his ob) will result in a two minute interfernce call.

  75. Who Needs Lohan on

    Just worries me when I think of us getting too aggressive. The last thing we can have is a run and gun type game. We will lose that type. Another weakness of ours are the slow defencemen. Those type of quick transition plays get our defencemen a bit flat footed and the two guys in the conference that have been the best against us at getting around our D are Malkin and Crosby. I just believe that our number 1 priority has to be not allowing those types of odd man rushes and/or plays where our D-men have to hook and hold to prevent them. Penalties on those types of plays will kill us. The games we will win are the ones that we hold them to 2 or less goals. 3 we have a chance and 4 we are toast.

    That said, I feel good about this series. I am merely pointing out how I could see us getting hurt. Sticking with my Game 7, late third period goal by none other than Mr. Clutch.

    Also, I disagree with the importance of Game 1. It means nothing if we lose and then win Game 2. The key is not falling behind 2-0. We must take one of the two….

  76. Whats up ppl. RANGERS RULE!!!!!!!

    Will everyone please agree to loudly boo Cindy Crosbaby like those arrogant Penguins fans do Jagr?


  77. Yeah Lohan I agree. we can get burned in odd man rushes. We have to be aware of that. I think crashing the net is important but we have to do it in a way that is planned and not chaotic like Calgary last night. Several times they crashed the net and had nothing to show for it because it was crazy. Also just a side thing can golaies get the penalty for closing your hand around the puck and throwing it? Does anyone remember when it happened. It was this year against the Rangers. The goalie caught the puck during a pp and then threw it out of the zone. Gtta go help Ag slice up onions. Bye.

  78. Can someone please tell me one aspect of the game where the Rags outmatch the Pens? Unless it’s suddenly 10 years ago and Jagr, Straka, and Shanahan are in their prime, I don’t see one aspect of the game where the Rags have the advantage (Unless you count “Being the biggest jag-off” as a positive, then you have Avery). When you look at the teams, do you seriously think you can win? Anyone?

  79. Sean needs to come out of the closet! Why should he be ashamed of his bisexuality? Beauty and hockey together…. only in his warped mind!

  80. Goalie Henrik a is a lus fr us as a Vezina finalist for the third year in a row. Boy that was easy!

    Yeah we can win and Jagr happens to be skating like its ten years ago. Thanks.

  81. LOL

    Monkey, Aves is funny. See Martina Brodyour is gonna start something that will probably carry over, alot more people wont shake his hand now, these losers are like kids, they see one person do something and they’ll probably follow.

    I actually was bumed that the Craps didnt win, i wanted Habs just so the game would be on tomorrow, and Craps would vs Pissburgh and we’d get to see two ugly russians go at it. But eh.

    As for OV and “the shot” it wasn’t his fault, that was a great play, blame this idiot Federov for taking his head out of the game, and thinking OV was gonna shoot, the moron didn’t even have his stick on the ice, that would have been an easy tap in, but he fugged it up, and blame OV for taking a million shots in a game and confusing his teamates. Either way who cares.


  82. And Fleury has been the better goalie since coming back from injury (actually, the best goalie in the NHL statistically in that time). Given the way both goalies have played down the stretch and into the playoffs, I’d say that it’s a push at best.

  83. Henrik is the better goalie hence the nomination. The quickest to make it to 100 career wins and the first to have 30 in each of his first three seasons. SO we win on goal. Also our pk is very strong. As is our GAA. the way the RAngers block shots and so on.

  84. Everyone says Pens over Rangers. Who cares! Rangers in 6 or 7 we can surprise them all.
    The year after the lockout they said the Rangers would be the worst team in the league but they were wrong.

    Same can be true this year.

  85. Wow…lots of comments and this is a new post.
    Hmmm… are we anxiously waiting for something….?

    OK… I say Rangers in 6. (If we split the first 2 games)

    Anyone agree?

  86. Yeah I hope we win game 1. We have to split the first two in the igloo i just think it lifts a lot of pressure by winning game 1.

  87. For the goalies, look at the stats down the stretch…Fleury was the better goalie. You do not have 2 top defensive pairings to go against the Crosby and Malkin lines, and you do not have the offense to outscore the Pens. Lundvquist can only do so much.

    Pens win games 1 and 2 at the Igloo, lose game 3 at the garden, steal game 4, and come home to win it in 5.

  88. The Rangers have had success against the Penguins this year.
    Lundquist is the better overall goalie.
    We don’t have a big guy on defense we have a young core who are mobile and god with the puck. Marc Staal has been a surprise this year in how quickly he has matured.
    Our other youngsters of Dubinsky and Calahan had a strong first round.
    Our PK is good and so is our GAA. We allowed only 199 goals against this year (give or take a goal or two). We bloke a lot of shots and our pk has been solid. Our PP has been bad but in the season series against the Penguins we were actually quite good on the PK (and most of those games were against Fleury) Plus the Rangers have been playing better recently then they did during much of the season. Drury is clutch and has a bunch of game winning goals plus his numbers on face-offs are very strong. Gomez is a smart player and has doe well on face-offs and I already mentioned Dubinsky who has been a pleasant surprise taking the top line center position. Lately Jagr has been skating controlling the puck and dominating like he used to. SO in short its gonna be a good series and I think the Rangers are gonna win in 6.

  89. I see the brilliant minds of Carnegie Mellon have found their way on here to waste everyone’s time, but give a good laugh about Fleury being better than Henrik. Fleury has had better stats since he came back, however.

    Stats since Fleury returned on February 28:
    Fleury: 14 games, 13 starts (his first one was in relief), 1.53 GAA, .947 Save %, 2 shutouts
    Lundqvist: 17 games (all starts), 1.94 GAA, .923 Save %, 2 shutouts

    GAA will not be exact because I am working with rounded off minutes. I hope my math is right because I did all of the addition in my head, but had to do the division on a calculator. They’re both pretty good, and Fleury obviously had a worse team to play in the first round. Make of all of it what you will; bottom line is that they have both been good.

  90. For more fun, since February 28, since I used that date before, the Rangers scored 43 goals in 18 games (not including the “team goals” for winning shootouts, of course) for 2.39 goals per game, and the Penguins have 56 goals (including three seven-goal games) in 18 games for 3.11 goals per game.

  91. Wow, I’m suprised anyone from New York has heard of Carnegie Mellon.
    Yes, both goalies are very good, and I can see them cancelling each other out. But look at the rest of the roster. You may have good young defensemen who can move the puck, but they have to get the puck first. Between Hossa-Crosby-Dupuis, Malone-Malkin-Sykora, Ruutu-Staal-Kennedy, and Roberts-Laraque-Talbot, you do not have enough defense to shut them all down (if any of them). The system you play can only get you so far. And on the other side, Gill has owned Jagr when they played against each other.
    Maybe I’m missing something, but I do not see how you can logically say this will be a series.

  92. Roster breakdown:
    Dupuis-Crosby-Hossa vs. Straka-Dubinsky-Jagr
    Malone-Malkin-Sykora vs. Avery-Gomez-Shanahan
    Kennedy-Staal-Ruutu vs. Dawes-Drury-Callahan
    Laraque-Talbot-Hall vs. Sjostrom-Betts-Orr

    These are the line combinations as I understand them. I think it’s pretty clear that they win the first two lines and we win the last two, but it will come down to who plays against who. Hopefully, we can get our third line out against their fourth line, and I wouldn’t mind our second line against their first line, especially defensively, and I think our first line can get an edge offensively against their second line. Renney will probably use our fourth against their first, also, as it has worked in the past.

  93. Wow, I was writing that response before I saw your last one. On defense, you have two guys who can score in Whitney and Gonchar, but your defensemen, aside from Orpik, are as suspect as ours in the defensive end. How can this not be a close series when the Rangers won five out of eight in the regular season? Your third and fourth lines don’t scare me too much on offense, except for Staal and Kennedy being able to break out of the defensive zone quickly after a good play. You sound like Doc Emrick, *cancel each other*.

  94. The Rangers can play against the Penguins it should be a good series. We plyed each other well durig the regular season and this should be no different.

  95. I think the playoffs are totally different than the regular season and while Pitt has a very young team we have proven playoff performers in Jagr, Shanahan, Drury, Gomez, and Straka. Experience can go a long way in the playoffs and as I look down the Pens line up I just don’t see much playoff experience…other than Sykora.
    Its gonna be a close series either way and I CANT WAIT TILL FRIDAY!

  96. Who Needs Lohan on

    Goalie matchup…Lundqvist will have to be a lot better guys this round. Granted a lot of goals were flukes I just never felt he really looked 100% comfortable. I hate a great view of him in game 5 from my seat (behind him for two periods). He was very slow in his reactions. Maybe it was nerves about wrapping up the series, or maybe he did get a lil nervous about being run at by a sore loser Devil, but he was far from sharp on the routine plays. 1st goal was a result of him saving a puck with the glove that was way over the net. Obviously you know about the off the head off the stick through the legs, nothing but net goal. Again, not saying he was bad, cause he clearly came up big in the third, but overall he needs to be better. Cause god knows they will get their fair share of chances.

    To the CMU guy, Id first like to say I was somewhat impressed that you came on here and for the most part you were civilized and gave a rather educated explanation of why your team will win. I cant argue with the fact that the Penguins are loaded and have a good chance at going all the way. I think this series will come down to the fact that your team had too easy a matchup in Rd 1. It hurt us big time last year. We just werent prepared for the onslaught, similar to the one that you are about to see. This will be intensity like you havent seen since the 90s in your so called “Igloo”. I believe that it will be a very even series and I believe in the end it will need a decisive Game 7. And in those types of games, the more experienced team usually wins.

    So my friend CMU, be prepared for a let down. See how your boy with the DSL is hunched over in the picture above???? Get used to it bro!!!!!

  97. Staal Wart – Gonchar, Sydor, and Gill on the backline and Dupuis (two seasons) all have past experience, as well, and Laraque, if he matters.

  98. Dellapina is reporting that Games 1 and 4 will be on Versus only in New York. Does anyone know what that means for us out-of-towners? Do we get a broadcast through Center Ice, or no broadcast at all?

  99. “Can someone please tell me one aspect of the game where the Rags outmatch the Pens?”

    Goaltending, defense, blocking shots & penalty kill, & veterans that can still play like jAGR, Shanny, Drury, Gomez–A YOUNG ONE!, Straka (that doesn’t include you, Gary Roberts).

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