On Dawes, Valiquette, and others (Updated)


A few thoughts before Game No. 4 of 82:

<li>I’m not sure why Nigel Dawes has looked out of synch through the early part of the season. Maybe it didn’t help that his center last night, Lauri Korpikoski, wasn’t particularly sharp, either. But for much of the home opener, Dawes was either a step off the puck or he couldn’t do much with it when he had it.

At least Dawes’ struggles makes Tom Renney’s job easier when trying to slide a new forward into the lineup (a sensible pick against a physical group like the Flyers would be a big body like Patrick Rissmiller). Should Renney go that route, a night off can only help Dawes, because he’s too good a player to keep playing the way he has.

<li>Let’s be clear that there is probably no tangible explanation for Stephen Valiquette’s success against the Flyers in particular last season. This isn’t baseball, after all. But there is something to be said for a goalie having a comfort level against certain jerseys and teams. That’s why my guess is Renney goes with Valiquette in net.

<li>What does 3-0 mean? It means six points, of course, and it also means a team has bought itself some capital with its fans. But just ask Wade Redden about what a fast start guarantees you in this league. There was no team better than his Ottawa Senators in the early part of last season. By the time the playoffs began and the Senators and stumbled in the back door, there was probably no team worse.

Update, 5:55 p.m.: All of the above turn out to be true. Rissmiller in for Dawes on the third line, Valiquette in for Lundqvist. Is Palin in for Santa Claus? First prize to the reader who can correctly guess what I’m talking about.

Update, 9:12 p.m.: And to think, all this time we thought Marek Malik was home in the Czech Republic sifting through offers from other NHL teams, when in fact he has resurfaced on the Rangers….in the form of Dmitri Kalinin.

Mind you, this is not to paint every Eastern European defenseman with a broad brush.

Just every Eastern European defenseman who makes fans want to tear their hair out…

Update, 9:44 p.m.: A 4-0 start to a hockey game is kind of like a 4-0 start to a season. You’re never going to turn it down, but it’s a tough pace to maintain.

Still, the Rangers found a way to hold on tonight, stealing the momentum back from the revived Flyers when they killed off an extended 5-on-3.

Not a perfect effort, but impressive nonetheless. And now it’s worth asking again: Outside of cutting some excess salary, is now really the time to be tinkering seriously with your roster?

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  1. “a sensible pick against a physical group like the Flyers would be a big body like Patrick Rissmiller”

    Why exactly is that a sensible pick? Rissmiller showed NOTHING in either camp or pre-season. The guy who should be in is Fritsche. He actually brings energy, and is the best skater among all the scratches.

  2. The 3-0 start is great news since the previous season they have been slow starters, and have had to go on great runs late in the year to make the playoffs. This is a nice early 6 points that is very big.

  3. they got to do something with the 3rd line… callie was a hitting machine out there and was the only one that stood out on that line…

  4. Fritsche over Rissmiller, please.

    Why Valli? I know he owned the Flyers last year, but this team is off to a hot start right now, and to pull Henrik when he’s in the groove is a mistake. Let Valli play the Leafs game…..

  5. Why is Dawes “too good a player to play like he is” while Prucha doesn’t have it anymore? Prucha showed a lot more in his first couple of seasons than Dawes has in one. Prucha also has been a favorite target of Tom Renney benchings, while others have immunity. Don’t get me wrong, I like Dawes and do agree that he’s got the potential to be a 25-30 goal scorer. I just think that for whatever reason, Prucha has drawn the short straw in the Tom Renney system. Is Renney biased against Europeans? Frankly, Prucha has played much better than Dawes this season and Dawes remains in and invisible, while Prucha plays well and gets benched.

    It’s just frustrating to to me that a guy with Prucha’s ability to find open space, who will score 30 goals in a season again in the future, is being benched. I hope he gets traded and has a great career because Renney will not allow him to do it as a Ranger.

    I also apologize for bringing up a relatively unrelated subject.

  6. Hey don’t think it has been mentioned by anyone…but a great moment for Aaron Voros and you really get to see the character of our new captain Drury:

    After Voros scored his goal (and man was he pumped) Drury went and grabbed the puck for Voros and brought it to him.

    Why? Well growing up Voros was a HUGE Rangers fan living in Vancouver and was a kid when the Rangers won and really enjoyed going around Vancouver with his Rangers gear. Anyways here he is first game at The Garden (Regular season at least) and the guy scores a goal. Talk about your childhood dream come true right?

    Great moment and game all around.


  7. “Maybe it didn’t help that his center last night, Lauri Korpikoski, wasn’t particularly sharp, either.”

    I didn’t see much of the game last night, but this is the second critical comment by Sam about Korpikoski’s play last night.

    Since he was 2nd star of the game, how poorly could he have played? Don’t the beat writers vote the stars?

  8. Lundqvist was the 2nd star, not Korp. There was a mistake in the box score that had Korp at second star. I’m hoping to see Fritsche in for Dawes and I wouldn’t be upset if Rissmiller came in for Sjo (only if he can win a faceoff since Betts and Korp were pitiful last night in that aspect) or Vally for Hank so Lundqvist stays fresh. No reason to play a back to back so soon after coming back from Europe, especially taking into account our hot start. Give Vally tonight’s game and Friday’s vs. Toronto imo.

  9. KEITH

    NHL.com fugged that up. The 2nd star was Lundqvist, i don’t know where they got Korpedo from.

    Korp didn’t do much wrong. He looked nervous at times, but that’s to be expected. Its his first real game at MSG, not counting pre season. He got the season debut, and the Garden debut, out of the way. Now the season really starts for him. Hopefully positive. But i like the way he’s been playing.

    I don’t know if scratching Dawes is such a good move for THIS game. Im all in favor for putting in Fritsche, or Rismiller, but i don’t know if it should be for Dawes. But that’s my opinion.

    Also i think Hank should start this game. Vally gave up soft goals in the pre season, even though pre season means jack shit, since Hank is doing well. But still. IT is early, and there’s no need to tire Hank. But we cant give division games to our backup. Plus this wont help Hank’s confidence, if he thinks he’s just not good enough to verse the Philly Flowers.

    Hopefully were 4-0 by the end of the night. Hopefully Orr knocks out Cote, and Voros beats up Richards, or Downie.

    BTW – Some side notes on injuries for those who don’t know. McCabe might have some semi serious back injury, from the game last night. And DiPietro has a knee injury from his surgery, lol 2 years into his contract, the guy already has a major concussion, two hip surgeries, or just one, and knee surgery. This guy is the Forsberg of goaltenders.

    Anybody watch Avery in his Stars debut ?? They lost in OT to a Nash goal, but they were down by two goals, with 4 mins left, and came back. Good game. Also it seems like the Southeast division will be pretty high scoring since they don’t have reliable goaltenders. Canes beat Cats 6-4, and Trashers beat the Crapitals 7-4. The Bolts could definitely win that division, its all up for grabs.

  10. Voros definitely deserved the first star last night, he played a great game with a lot of energy – I was psyched to see how pumped he was after scoring that goal and getting the assists. I also thought he was robbed of an assist on the Dubinsky.

    At this point I don’t really care much which two of the five (Prucha, Dawes, Fritsche, Rismiller, Sjoestrom) Renney plays as they are going to be on the 3rd or 4th lines, and realistically you can’t expect much offensively from them given the ice time. I like Sjoestrom in the lineup just because he has good size and speed, plus he can take a shift on the penalty kill.

    I don’t know that its time to pull the plug on Dawes just yet. I mean if you expect 15-20 goals, which I don’t think is bad for a third liner, that is one every 4-6 games. They are only three games in. I don’t know if it’s obvious that Renney has a preference Dawes/Prucha as they both played about the same number of gears next year. I think you start pulling Dawes out the line up if he doesn’t get any production by the sixth game or you really need to showcase Prucha for a trade.

  11. It was a fun game last night. Really have no complaints. Looking forward to tonight. My hatred for all things Filthadelphia pumps me up a little extra.

    Whomever posted about the ‘playstation line’, 3 goals, 10 shots, 11 hits, THEY can name themselves whatever they want if we see THAT on a regular basis!

    Just cracked the 1st cold one. Drop the puck already!

    (note: 5:– yesterday someone ‘trolled’ me.)

  12. GardenFaithfulinFLA on

    Steve Zip reports from Philadelphia that Valliquette is in goal. Dawes, Prucha and Fritsche are scratches. His thought is Sjostrum up to the third line and Rissmiller on fourth. I’d really like to see Valliquette have an outstanding game.

  13. hahahahahaha

    The New York Islanders received some unwanted news just one game into the new season as the team learned that goaltender Rick DiPietro has swelling and fluid around his surgically repaired left knee.

    The 27-year old DiPietro was expected to start Friday’s opener against the New Jersey Devils, but was a surprise late scratch as Joey MacDonald took his place between the pipes, making 27 saves in a shootout loss.

  14. For a team that hasn’t had much time to gel they definitely showed some promise last night. You gotta be excited with the 6 point start.

  15. OUCH

    What appeared to be an awkward fall could turn out to be a serious injury for Florida Panthers’ defenceman Bryan McCabe.
    Early indications suggest McCabe may have broken his back after colliding with Carolina Hurricanes defenceman Dennis Seidenberg into the boards. McCabe will have an MRI on Saturday to determine the full extent of the injury.
    McCabe left Friday’s game midway through the second period and did not return. X-rays showed at least one fractured vertebrae.

  16. What is Renney’s issue with Fritsche? It’s obvious he’s no Prucha fan but why isn’t Fritsche getting a shot? Pussmiller sucks.

  17. Dawes played his best last year vs the Flyers and Devs maybe Renney should have given him another game or two.

  18. Let’s hope Dru-Gomez-Nas can get a lot more sustained offense tonight. Watching the PS3 line finish was such a pleasure.

    Please, lord, let the PP not be an issue this year.

    Go Rangers.

  19. GardenFaithfulinFLA on

    Good quotes from Sam’s article today from Dubinsky. I think it pretty much sums it all up:

    “I think the big thing is the locker room is pretty excited together, and I think I can speak for 23 guys when I say that we enjoy coming to the rink every day and working hard together and having fun together,” said Brandon Dubinsky, who had a goal and an assist in between new linemates Voros and Zherdev. “That’s certainly something that has changed here and it’s exciting.”

  20. GRAVES

    Rismiller is playing because he’s semi big, and physical, and perfect for a 4th line role. I want Fritsche in as well, but im not against this. We gotta hit. Plus he’s a good PK’er so im not against the move at all.


    That Dubi goal should have gone unassisted. Obviously id like it if they handed out free points to Nicky, and Aaron, but it was the right call. Voros never gave the puck to Dubi, i thinnk he just caused the turn over, and it slid off of the Brat Hawks player and onto Dubi’s stick. Either way it was a nice pass by Nicky, and a great play by Voros to cause that turn over.

    Its funny, i thought Dubi was gonna put up aboot 15 goals, 40-50 points. Now he seems like he could potentially lead the team in goals and points at the end of the year. I thought Dawesy was gonna be the one that puts up 20-25, and its still early, but i don’t like what im seeing so far, as well as his play in the pre season, but i don’t agree with scratching him for tonight’s game, but that’s my opinion.

    I really hope this PS3 line isn’t a fluke. If Voros can put up 15 goals, then hey, we replaced Avery, lol perfect.

    Im ready to get my Dubi jersey any day now, and when the seasons over, and if Nicky gets re signed, then im getting his too. That’s such a friggin cool line.

  21. “Why exactly is that a sensible pick? Rissmiller showed NOTHING in either camp or pre-season. The guy who should be in is Fritsche. He actually brings energy, and is the best skater among all the scratches.”

    he showed me more than Betts or Sjostrom

  22. RICHE

    Good question. Vally’s last loss was in a shootout against the Philly Flowers.

    But Zherdev, and Nazzy are both good in the shootout. Dubi’s shot is a hell of a lot better than last year.

    Hopefully it doesn’t go to a shootout, i want Philly to start there season 0-1.

    8 minutes till pre game. Cant wait to see that annoying face or Giannone.

  23. Thanks for that John, that was awesome……They better not be careless with the puck tonight….I’m sure Renney addressed that…I do think Fritsche should be in for Riss…..Riss (like someone said) didnt show much of anything.


  24. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    Riche’, are you serious – i hope the “LOL” means you’re joking. Obviously, our top 3 shootout specialists are now Zherdev, Dubinsky, and Naslund. If Prucha or Dawes were in, I’d put them 3/4’ish.

    I’m going to agree with Dubie Rules on this one. Prucha in a suit – again?! WTF! You know what, trade Prucha. This shit isn’t fair to him. He’s a good kid who works hard and will make the NHL and when he goes and scores 25 goals for someone, I’ll be happy he’s not here rotting anymore. I can’t figure out why he’s black-listed by this team.

    And whoever keeps bashing Betts, STFU, he does his job – and well. He also adds offense with Orr now. Watch the game and buy a foam finger so your same dumb moot points don’t waste anymore of my time on here, thanks.

  25. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    Sam does football (for Fox?) Sunday mornings, he misses most Saturday evening games.

  26. Santa Claus? that thing that happened i think at the Eagles game? snowballs or something lol

  27. I was completly joking folks… chill.

    Some levity never hurts does it? :)

    Actually can’t wait to see Zherdev in a shootout.

  28. Listening on the radio while I’m at work… sounded like Orr lost the fight…

    These are the Filthy announcers though so I’m not sure how biased they are.

    They already called Dubi “Steve Dubinksy”


  29. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    You’re both idiots.
    Lets go Betts – you both don’t know shit.


  30. scoreeeeeeeeeeee sjo!!

    omg the speed of this team is incredible can we play 78 more games like this?


    Maybe I wasn’t being sarcastic about adding him to my fantasy team…

  32. Sjo, Betts and Rissmiller pretty much making a case for themselves. Pruchs, Dawes and Fritsche are probably not very happy right now.

  33. Shanny’s probably on the phone with his agent right now, “Umm, remember when I said I didn’t want to talk to any other teams? I’m willing to take a softer stance on that…”

  34. What was more shocking Hollweg scoring 2 goals vs the Flyers last year or Betts putting up 2 points in the first ten minutes tonight?

  35. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    Some of you are on drugs or need to get off the PC.
    Perfect season? You’re on crack – don’t even joke about that, Get off your PC and actually go play.

    Bob – no, you’re wrong. Time to STFU about Betts now!! He has more points than Drury, he’s played good all 4 games.

    Nice to see Sjo get involved – Really nice to see a goal from Rozi. So far, this is a very very good game.

  36. Anyone still think we need Shanny?

    Also Dave Reid from NHL Network made a great point. The Rangers have too many forwards, but its not necessarily a bad thing. They all want to play so it keeps motivating guys to work their butts off because they know they have someone that can easily replace them if they don’t play well. Having that pressure keeps all these guys, even Betts, Prucha, and Sjostrom who have been here a decent amount of time, on their toes and working their hardest.

    I said we were going to be good in July and most didn’t believe me. I really hope we can keep this up because we have the perfect mold right now. Fast, Aggressive, and Relentless. Two more periods left and I hope to see the same thing.

  37. Dubi finally learned how to fight, he is becoming the total package and he was drafted by the rangers, somebody wake me up, I must be dreaming.

  38. RICHE

    Orr won that fight in my opinion. Orr threw a big punch and Cote ducked and Orr lost his balance, but Orrzy bitched him, adn caught him with 2 nice shots.

    And Dubi, lol this kid is so friggin awesome, it was a pretty even fight, but Dubi took him down, so that was the tie breaker, so Dubi wins.

    Great fuggin period by Nyr, that was pretty perfect, besides a few scary moments. Nice of them to make Briere pay for cross checking Vally in the god damn face. Great shot by Rozi, hopefully the first of many.

    Nicky had a nice open net to shoot, its good to see him score another, hopefully there’s more where that came from, also that was a sweet feed for that goal Bettsy scored. Good job by him. And Freddy Shoes, wow that was nice speed, it was a weak goal by Biron, he looked like he was sleeping, but Freddy had the perfect wrap around, those are NOT easy to do, when you’re wrapping around, trying to keep the puck on your stick. Great stuff.

    DON’T get excited. Think Habs, and more recently, think Pens. 40 mins left, hopefully Vally is up to the task, and hopefully Nyr doesn’t stop playing.

    Lets go Nyr.

  39. The only thing that concerns me about the rangers is that there defensemen are still soft but Renney’s system with the wings coming back and helping out should disguise the soft defensemen.

  40. the Palin reference was a reference to the Tim Allen movie, Santa Clause…what’s the prize?

  41. The team is fast and deep. I love Dawes and Prucha but it seems to me that having young guys that can skate and score fighting for playing time is better than trading two of them to make cap space for shanny or Sundin.

    It says something about this team this year when they score without Prucha and Dawes on the ice.

  42. Rangers winning 4-0 get a PP, any coach with a brain would put his 3rd line out there to get them scoring, but no, Renney still didn’t receive a brain from the wizard of Oz.

  43. rissmiller is hurt and off to the locker room
    paging dan fritsche…perhaps youll be getting your shot soon

  44. “Any coach with a brain.” Are you kidding me? Everyone b**ched about our power play last year, which sucked, and you want to put our third line out there in a game that is not over?

  45. 1. im glad tom renny and i knew that was interference be nice if the refs did.
    2. how could flyers fans possibly think that the penalty against them was a bad one.

  46. uh oh 4-2 already. The Flyers should have been called for goalie intereference on Gagne’s goal as Valiquette was taken down by Richards. Kalinin made a brutal turnover leading to the goal. Uhh how did Zherdev not get a penalty shot there?

  47. Richards just said “I don’t think I hit him and he came out towards me.” Palin wasn’t the only politician on the ice tonight!

  48. I think Renney is setting up Korpikoski to fail so that he would have an excuse to send him down.

    Renney is the only coach in NHL that does not reward 3rd and 4th liners with any PP time, no matter what is the score.

  49. Um, how about in Prague, where Renney put Cally-Dubi-Prucha on the power play when they were buzzing? There have been many times where he has put 3rd-4th lines out on the power play when a game is out of hand or the power play is sucking. This game was neither and the Power Play needs confidence early to get on a roll. Your justification is ridiculous and your blind hatred is laughable. Betts scores, you say something negative. Renney has the team playing well and you still take shots at him. As I’ve said before, you lose all credibility when you never see the other side of something.

  50. Oh, I forgot, this is the same guy who said that Renney was conspiring against Montoya last year by not playing Valliquette in pre-season.

  51. bob – shut the f*** up! Why you even post here? We play bad, it’s bad but when we play good and effective hockey it’s even worse because idiots like you show up.

  52. Renney NEEDS to put Rozi on the 2nd friggin unit. Redden isn’t getting a chance to use his friggin shot, he needs to sneak in the slot to do so. Redden should be in Rozi’s spot.

    That 2nd goal was PURE BS. But its still Vally’s fault, he tried to pull a Hasek, like when he plays dead, except Vally just assumed there would be a penalty, and let Gagne take that shot. It sucks cause it went off the post, and off his back, so it wasn’t a good shot, it was stoppable.

    The D better step it up. Now i know why i like the 1 goal games a lot better. They gotta stay strong, and play smart. That Gomer, and Mara penalties were pathetic, those are not the penalties to take when you’re up by only 2 goals.

  53. Bob-

    Its the 4th game of the season, we have a ton of new players the top 6 hasn’t come together yet and you want the 3rd and 4th lines to get more ice?

  54. Kalinin makes me pine for Malik. First he turns it over then he takes a penalty………. oy.

  55. This is almost exactly like the Montreal last year. Freaking pathetic backcheck by Zherdev. It was as lazy as you can get.

  56. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    Zherdev was actually covering the guy Dubi *should* have been covering. He was actually back there on good measure (seeing the open player), he failed by not covering him but Dubinsky was the fault for the defensive breakdown because he’s just floating 15 feet out of the crease not covering anyone.

  57. it is Renney’s fault that 3rd line can’t score, he is responsible for their lack of confidence.

  58. Fresh are you watching the bleeping game? It’s not on the goalie. It’s on the defense. Renney has also given the 4th line a ridiculous amount of icetime.

  59. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    Let’s see. Drury’s blown 2 chances shooting them directly into the goalie…think he’ll prove his role as the “clutch” scorer? I hope so.

  60. True shut up yourself. I was correct on the lack of a HARD backcheck on the third goal. Phantom call on Dubi there. The refs just get worse and worse.

  61. Graves-

    The Flyers had 12 shots in the 2nd period and 4 shots so far in the 3rd. 3 goals on 16 shots is not good. The defense is not allowing SHOTS ON GOAL! Every penalty has been killed! The Flyers may be in Vali’s head he doesn’t look steady right now.

  62. nice shift by rosie to clear the puck out those were the first couple minutes i was terrified this season. nice kill boys.

  63. All the shots have been high quality really high quality. The forwards have been in Valley’s face all game. The Rangers D is too soft to move em out of the crease or all along the boards.

  64. we all need to remember that this is Valley in net and usually most of his starts end in a shootout i really hope to avoid that tonight im beat.

  65. I thought Knuble would have buried that one. Dave Maloney flat out calling out Redden over his soft play.

  66. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    Graves, I told you to shutup because you blame the 4th line’s excessive ice time (but what do you expect with Rissmiller hurt and Korpedo playing like crap?) And then you blamed Zherdev, when in actuality Zherdev didn’t cover DUBI’s MAN!

  67. I understand it wasn’t his man but again he did backcheck hard. I think it’s fair to get on Zherdev for that. Dubie has been off his game tonight. Imo the best Rangers forward has been Sjostrom.

  68. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    Geez boyz, that was scary.

    Sam, please address the Chris Drury issue. 3 one goal games. 1 assist. Hmmm…let’s see…

  69. The Rangers barely hang on ………. barely. True my slam of the 4th line was not really a slam. I was channeling Bob. The 4th line was by far the best line. They need alot more and better play from guys like Gomez and Drury. Staal needs to be moved up to the top pair.

  70. Renney called a timeout in the 2nd period when an icing after a PK when our players were caught on ice. Smart call for a guy without a brain. He also called timeouts in both the Prague games. But you’re right, 3 out of 4 games is close to “never”. Just keep throwing that crap out there and I’ll keep swatting them back down. Maybe you’ll get frustrated by the Rangers success at the expense of your hatred and being “right” and you’ll go away.

  71. That game was to close for comfort. I really though maybe this year would be different, and we wouldn’t have to worry aboot blowing huge leads, but jeez, that came to close. Thankfully we won that in regulation. Vally had a good game overall in my opinion.

    It got ugly, but im just glad we won.

  72. Welcome to Hockey Night Live, and lets lead with Sara Palin. Ok Al Trautwig we get it you don’t like her.

  73. Biron was horrendous. Thank you God he wasn’t pulled earlier. Mike Richards is a beast. If I’m starting a Hockey team Oveckin is my first pick and Richards might be my second pick.

  74. Rangers still found a way to hold on. Flyers really turned it on later in the game, but Rangers gotta learn to keep it going. Nitty played pretty well though so got to credit him.

    I kinda think they got the early 4-0 lead then got a little tired out since they played last night. Either way it was great to see the 3rd and 4th line guys pitch in.

  75. Actually, Orr, if you take away the bogus interference goal, it wasn’t nearly as close as the score. You take away that goal, nad the end isn’t nearly as nerve wrecking. Mike Richards pretty much put the team on his back and marched them out of the funk they were in (Ranger induced funk, that is!).

  76. Kalinin made one or two bad plays, but he makes up for them. He is nowhere near as bad as Malik. If anything, I’m impressed Rozsival isn’t playing worse since Malik, who made up for his mistakes, isn’t on the team anymore.

    That 2nd goal was crap, but whatever, puck should’ve been cleared out by everyone who had a chance to do it. Great game by the 4th liners. When Orr was in the box and Callahan and Zherdev were rotated on there, you could really see why Sjostrom can be a 1st or 2nd line winger.

  77. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    Mark, I disagree with you dude. If Biron didn’t suck this isn’t even a match. The Flyers outplayed the Rangers for about 45 minutes of a 60 minute tilt that their starting goalie blew for them. Don’t try to spin this as the Rangers outplaying the Flyers, because while that’s partially true for the first 15 minutes it doesn’t excuse how the Flyer dominated them the last 45.

  78. True Blue- I’m not trying to spin it. I didn’t see the Flyers do anything in the 1st period, so I don’t know about 45 minutes.My point was that the game was played at a frenetic, heart-pounding pace in the end because of the fact that the Flyers were one goal down. You take away that 2nd goal and it is 4-2 in the third, a much different dynamic. The Flyers played with desperation and the Rangers took some bad penalties. The PK saved the day. A good team wins, and has scoring from different lines. We have accomplished all of those in all four games. 4-0, what’s not to like?

  79. I don’t like seeing Drury and Gomez looking like members of the last season’s team. They need to get the puck on net and finish. Everyone else seems to be capable of it, how about the leadership that comes with the letters on that line’s chests?

    Still don’t think Shanny has a spot on this team. Great seeing guys guys like Voros, Sjo and Betts are earning their minutes. Think betts and voros have both more than shown why Renney has put his faith in them.

    That game may have gotten real ugly, but what a huge 2 points to have put away. Exactly the 2 points they wouldn’t have gotten last year,

    Go Rangers.

  80. Sjostrom and Betts are just too soft and not physical enough to be great 4th liners. And Betts is just too horrible a passer to be a good center in NHL. So even though they had a good game, I still want them traded. I want 4th line to be able to punish opposition with some scoring and A LOT of physicality.

  81. I’ll also take a win in the home opener of a hated rival, their first game of the season and our 4th game and after a game the night before. I say the Rangers dominated the 1st 20, then let the Flyers back in it. Unfortunate, yes, but I don’t think it’s any reason to panic.

  82. The top line might need to be broken up, A,A, and a C on same line is pretty stupid. Put Prucha or Fritsche on the 3rd line. Try Dawes with Gomez and Drury.

  83. bob what games do you watch? Sjostrom hits and Betts finishes checks when warrented. A bruiser 4th line is something from like the 80s and early 90s. If we had a bunch of Orrs out there, then we’d be getting owned every time they were on the ice. You are asking for players that don’t exist. Name tough guys that can light the lamp on a consistent basis.

    I’m pretty sure our 4th line can do that when Orr isn’t there. You saw dominance in the offensive zone when Betts and Sjoie were paired with Callahan or Zherdev. I just don’t get what your issue is with them when they clearly are doing a pretty decent job of being on our 4th line. I’d like to see Fritsche get a chance there, but its not like Betts and Sjos are horrible. Sjostrom would be playing 2nd or 3rd line on any other team anyway.

  84. That makes a 7-0 trip to the Wachovia !!! Man, was that tough to watch after the first 10 minutes and a 4-0 score. I had my Leetch jersey on and i was Proud !!!

  85. Ron Duguay needs to go into a time machine and come back in this era. Not in the ’70s still. Cut the hair, get rid of the earring. He is freakin hilarious.

  86. also bob, Betts is a center. Do you really want a 4th line center who takes himself out of the play by throwing a check deep in the other teams zone or one who throws a hit when needed but stays in position?

    The same works for our defense. They hit when they have to. They clear out from in front of the net and hit when they have numbers back. If they go to take someone out when its on the side boards or something, it kills our team d and opens up ice by the crease. When you play D like the Rangers do, you want the wingers to pressure the side boards and have other guys collapse to protect the slot. You don’t need bangers out there because it’ll take away from the system.

  87. Hahaha Philly fans boo for Santa AND for Palin, but I guess they couldn’t find any snowballs in October ;-)

  88. Gomez having the flu explains, to me, why he looks alittle unGomez like. Anybody critizing Kalinin at this point is nuts. Great win tonight. I wont even get into my horror of last nights game, but who can complain after 4-0????????????????????????????????????????????

  89. No they aren’t Kalinin blows. It didn’t take long to see that guys like Ulanov , Malik, Kamensky among others were garbage. Kalinin is no different.

  90. Sjostrom and Betts finish checks? yeah right, and when they do it is soft hits. A center can’t throw hits? What a ridiculous concept, but not as ridiculous as a center that cannot pass.

  91. I can’t believe people are still so quick to get on Renney. Each and every one of the three previous seasons he has been behind the ranger bench he has made the most of what he has been given. They have made the playoffs every year in which he has been the head coach for a full season and have by most accounts overachieved or achieved to the level they were considered to be capable of. Renney has set the tone for a new mentality in Rangers hockey…a winning mentality. He is knowledgeable, passionate, hardworking and most importantly his players play for him. As much as they win for themselves and their organization they win for Renney. That alone speaks volumes.

  92. Is there any way to get bob off this blog? He obviously has never played the game of hockey before. Hockey has a lot to do with positioning and confidence. Right now, sjostrom and betts have both. Renney has been singly the greatest thing to happen to the rangers since 94. He let’s the players play. There is a reason why these players are in the NHL. They don’t need training wheels and that’s why many players like to come to ny. I don’t see how bob can still complain on a 4-0 start. I doubted this team at first but I see great potential. Unlike bob here though, I will still say I miss jags, straka, avery, and shanny, and wish them well in the future. They had a great run, but we needed to male changes to advance the team. On that note, let’s go rangers

  93. We need him here so we can hear him talk about trying to trade for 4th line fighters that score 20 goals and hit without ever being out of position. I’d go on to give your reasons why but you wouldn’t be able to comprehend why a center first throw a hit deep in the other teams zone in a 1-2-2 forecheck and also in a light 2-1-2 forecheck, both of which the rangers use.

    He def reminds me of the fans that sit around me in 343 that scream to shoot the puck when the guy is at the state farm sign (under the hashmarks on the outer part of the circle).

  94. yo just saw on nhln they said ‘physical abuse of official’ i watchedmost of that game vs the coyotes… turned it off w 3 ticks left… cant believe i missed whatever it was….

  95. Seems like you can’t comprehend that a center can throw a hit in any of the 3 zones when the opportunity arises, and he can throw open ice hits and he can throw hits along the boards. Take Peca for example, he was a great defensive center that loved to take the body and he was excellent offensively s well.

    It is really pointless to have a 4th line that can neither score nor hit. Betts and Sjostrom got good size, but you never see them throwing their weight around like they really mean it. Maybe it is their high center of gravity, I don’t know and I don’t care, get them out of here and give me 4th liners that will throw big hits like Hollweg used to, while having better skill and offense.

  96. Bob, I’m not saying they should never hit. I’m just saying that in our defensive system, a center like Betts can’t be going all the way into the zone and trying to hit without someone else dropping back. Its best to have Orr go in deep with Sjostrom backing him up because of his speed, and Betts being the high guy because he is pretty solid with his position. Also I don’t think our defenseman are good enough to let them kind of play by themselves. I understand what you are saying, I just don’t think that would work right now with our teams strategy.

    Got to love Drury btw. When asked about Dubi fighting, he said that he loves how he plays but when you are up 4-0 early you don’t need that and he felt like it got the Flyers going. He makes a great point and just shows how he doesn’t mind speaking his mind with Jagr and Shanny gone.

  97. OK, we did not play our best, but the bottom line is that we have found ways to win all four games. I truly hope that the mgt is PATIENT with Korikoski and Dawes etc. Young guys need time to develop. Let them play, let’s see what we have. Don’t pull them out of the line-up. As far as Kallinan goes, he is a HUGE upgrade over Malik. I think this team has some mojo. The first line has done NOTHING yet and they have still managed to win. Could be a very exciting season indeed!

  98. pj – And the most important thing IS the 2 points. Doesn’t matter how you get them. Finding ways to win games takes a lot of hard work, luck, perseverence, communication, strategy, and all those little things that add up to huge things.

    I like the way my NYR have identified themselves as a hard-working team. The speed that they’ve added may put everyone’s idea that a defensive system will be completely boring. 4 goals a night is far from that. And last year there were -some- lots boring games. But if you combine a defensive system, and slow skaters not showing max effort…well, that’s what you get.

    I thought the game was entertaining last night. We saw something we hadn’t seen much, if any, at all last year. Once they buried the first, they got the 2nd, and didn’t sit on that 2-goal lead. How many of those did we squander last year? 100’s you say?!

    They didn’t sit back last night, and that was the advantage that they needed when philly came out being down 4-0 after 1 in their home opener. There was no way they were going to go down easy. They came back strong and showed why people believe they’re a threat.

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