The Rangers say they like each other

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My story today is on “how these Rangers have become a particularly tight group”:http://www.lohud.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080423/SPORTS01/804230397/-1/SPORTS, a subject that players and coaches were more than willing to expound upon.

The lone exception was Sean Avery,  who the other day said he was better off “keeping quiet on the subject”:http://rangers.lohudblogs.com/2008/04/21/lets-get-this-thing-started-already/. I suppose you could jump to all sorts of conclusions seeing how Avery and Marek Malik provided “one of the notable exceptions to this team’s Kumbaya feel”:http://rangers.lohudblogs.com/2008/02/06/fireworks-at-practice/, but I actually don’t think that’s the reason.

I just think Avery again has decided he’s better off keeping his mouth shut. And it doesn’t sound like “his teammates are complaining”:http://www.nydailynews.com/sports/hockey/rangers/2008/04/22/2008-04-22_its_rangers_vs_penguins_in_2nd_round-5.html.

More from practice later…

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33 Comments

  1. Nasty Voice of Reason on

    Repost:
    Hey guys,
    I want to be the voice of reason here. Last year when we swept the Thrashers I felt good going in to the second round. Not confident though. I knew we were going up against a really good Sabre team and I had doubts in my mind. This year I feel completely different. I feel confident and I think that the team is confident and not cocky. We have a good team right now guys. We have a great mix of youth and veterans who are contributing. They have a team made mostly of young players, two that are among the best in the world. I will say this. Having two of the best players in the world will help, but doesn’t mean shit in the grand scheme. This is the playoffs, this is where offense will get you somewhere, but defense and goaltending will win you the game. With that being said, I like our chances. A lot! I would take experienced veterans mixed with hungry young (good players) over 2 of the best players in the world and (a few good) veteran players any day of the week. I am predicting Rangers in 6. Not just because they are my team, but because I really believe it. We are going to take one in pitts, with both at home, and then trade wins to take it at home in 6.

    LGR!

  2. Nasty Voice of Reason on

    I think we will win game 1. I feel like we have been a very good team in the playoffs and the weeks leading up to the playoffs at either getting the lead, or coming back on teams.

  3. Nasty Voice of Reason on

    Pittsburgh is not a team that we can feel safe guarding a 1 goal lead against though. We need a cushion in these games. We are not going to do well if we are relying on being up a goal in the third and just trying to protect. We can win this way, but it is not the safe way to play against Pittsburgh. We have to go for it too.

  4. I think we need 1 win in Pittsburgh, and we can take all 3 at MSG. We played the Pens so well at MSG this year.

    Rangers in 6

  5. 22figure8 – Thanks for that link to the Penguins board; I needed a good laugh. They say tha the Rangers *may* have the goaltending advantage, only because Fleury has been hot recently. I would think any dummy would figure out the Rangers *do* have the goaltending advantage because our goaltender has been a top three goalie (based on Vezina voting) every season in the league. :-D

  6. Sam,

    I read your article, but I think the Avery issue could be bigger . No one really backed up Avery after the stick-in-the-face incident. I mean, the rangers didn’t go and say that Avery is a jerk, but they weren’t exactly supporting him either. I think that says much more about the team chemistry. I was hoping that at least one ranger would have stood up and said this blown way out of proportion.. But no one really, really had his back through the entire thing. I don’t think it will impact the playoff run, though, cuz I think Avery and the entire team are focused on one thing right now…winning. That said, no matter what happens in the playoffs, I don’t think Avery will be back next season (though I would love to have him), he’s great!).

  7. Greg I think they all (except Valiquette) said there was nothing wrong with it… Jagr said it was good and he wished Avery had waited till later in the series to unveil it… or I could be misremembering…

  8. In response to an earlier thread.: Kovalev has the best record in game sevens….something like 7-0.

  9. And then thye joked about it in practice didn’t they? I don’t think the stick waving things was a problem… even Valiquette joked about it later in practice…

  10. Well, I’m gonna miss most of the first game, but hopefully get back for the end, because I have a concert on Friday, but it’s better than if the series started on Thursday since I would have to miss the first two games for practice and a Saturday concert. :)

  11. Nasty Voice of Reason on

    But the shirt is still written in that goofy lettering that Salty was talking about yesterday. The one I got, that Sam had on his post a few days ago, was much better than this one. And the one I have states the actual penalty. I think it is a joke that the league came down so hard and made a rule and everyone was up in arms about it, but they actually OK the licensing of a shirt about it. What a joke.

  12. I just skimmed through that pens ‘board also. I will say this…at least they have a fan base, and that fan base is knowledgable.

    I DO think though, that they have a false sense of security having swept the Sens, much like NYR last year having swept ATL.

    I think I’m on board for the Rangers in 6. Though it all depends on games 1 & 2. Gotta take one of those.

    On a side-note. MTL beat philthy all 4 times they played this season. See ya philthy

  13. yea I would get the Avery Rules, the original shirt, before I gae any more money to Reebok for their parasite-like marketing… They are probably going to sue the fellows making the current shirts now..

  14. Nasty Voice of Reason on

    So, who is going to be the factoring player for us in this series? Any thoughts?

  15. Good question Nasty. Really any question is a good one, cause I don’t feel like workin right now…

    I’d say Hank. Alone, for sure. But even further, as our #1 PK’er. Our PK will be key. Individual talent-wise, I don’t believe there’s a better PP out there. If the fwds can keep Gonchar from getting shots off, it’ll force them down low where they’ll have to be pushed to the outside. If cindy, geno or hossa gets even .5sec in the slot, they have the ability to beat Hank up high every time.

    So, we all thought that the 1st rnd would be low-scoring. Should we expect this round to be high-scoring?

  16. Nasty – I’ve gotta go with Avery. Whether he continues to agitate or takes the ‘shut up and play’ approach, I think he’s huge for us. Dependings on the match-ups, I could see him and that line with Gomez and Shanny really giving the Penguins fits.

  17. Nasty Voice of Reason on

    I think the Drury line will have a good series. They have been great cycling the puck and creating chances. I think Dubinsky could have a great series too.

  18. The heroes will be whoever shut down the guns. If you can somehow turn the Lions in Crosby/Malkin/Hossa into just regular Cats… we will be okay. I hope they are practicing the rebounds off that shooting block like crazy. We are going to need a lot of trash goals.

  19. I think the contributing player will be Jagr, Shanny, Gomez, Drury, STraka, Avery, Dubi, Dawes, Calihan, Sjo, Betts, Orr, Rozsival, Staal, Girardi, Tyutin, Backman, and Mara. ANd defintily Hank. I think the others may be non factors!

    Just kidding I think Jagr (I say that every game) and Drury will come up big on offense (if not in points then in play- Jagr controlling the puck and Drury returning to dominant form in face-offs). Staal and Rozsival will get big minutes including a lot of pk time. And Hank is Hank so we know he will be a difference maker.

  20. Beer good point on the false sense of security having swept the Sens…
    Do you think the Rangers this year are as good or better than the Buffalo team we faced last season?
    I certainly do. I also think we have the right mix of veterans and youth…either way this series is gonna be fun as long as the officiating is fair. Personally I’d like to just see the refs swallow the whistle and let them play…
    One more question, cause I haven’t seen much of Fluery…
    Does he play similar to Brodeur, that being out of the crease and aggressive to the shooter or like Hank does he stay deep in net?

  21. I think our speedy line of Drury, Dawes and Callahan will be huge, Pittsburgh D is the weak link and if our speedy wingers can capitalize with a strong cycle and win the battles in the corners they can be dangerous.
    We also have to hit hard and finish our checks.
    and obviously Hank has to be huge…

  22. I think Jagr is the key player for the Rangers this series. If he can play his power game against their best defensemen, it will open the ice up for our other players. I hope he’s motivated to show pittsburgh how good he really is.

    Gomez is a close second. He has to be able to carry the puck into the zone like he did versus the Devils for him to be successful.

    That said, the thought of Jagr on the ice late in a game with a Ranger one goal lead and the Penguins putting Crosby and Malkin on the same line scares me.

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