Deep breaths, everyone

71

In the wake of another Rangers debacle, I doubt anyone is interested in my misadventures last night, in which I had an almost completed story before me by the middle of the second period, only to have to “scramble to rewrite”:http://www.lohud.com/article/20081224/SPORTS01/812240368/-1/SPORTS once the Capitals mounted their comeback.

Call it an occupational hazard. Not just writing for a newspaper, or covering hockey, but covering this team in particular, which may be the most schizophrenic first-place team in sports history.

At one point, while also expounding on the resurgent play of Ryan Callahan — he had two goals, remember? — I had written something about how the Rangers had won for the fourth time in five games. Five goals later, they’ve instead lost two straight. And a Merry Christmas to you, too, Mr. Ovechkin.

Clearly, there’s a lot to sift through. I detect some frustration and even anger from fans after last night, and as much as its not my place to tell you how to feel, I say give it a couple of days. Regardless of how the Rangers emerge from the Christmas break, there’s a lot of hockey left to play.

So rest up. Step away from the computer if you must. And with the holiday upon us, try to think of someone less fortunate than yourself — like, for instance, an Islanders fan.

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71 Comments

  1. Why not tell it like it is – this team is deeply flawed. There is no consistency to their play. That my friend is a result of poor coaching. HL is hung out to dry almost every night. why can’y they win in regulation? how many shoot-outs does HL have to endure before he collapses. And the lack of a power play. Poor coaching. sack the bums!

  2. This team is primed for a first-round playoff exit, and they’ll only make the playoffs by virtue of a strong early season based on beating shitty teams, and the shootout.

    Quote the above in five months, please.

  3. Hi Sam!
    Islander fans do not have the same expectations…not this year anyway…as ranger fan have, or had I guess, and rightly so….12th place 28th place is relative to expecatation levels that making playoffs 3 years running and making it once in six years brings you…

    So Islander fans do not make me happier…

    As I said in last post…Rangers wont ruin my Christmas…if power of positive thinking really worked I think I’d cure blindness or Cancer and a million other things before I began spening time on a hockey team…but…this is a hockey blog so…

    If you are fortunate enough to get the NHL Network check out some Junior world championship games this weekend

    USA vS germany on Friday 3:30PM

  4. if this team stays in the way it is, we will finish with a #5-6 seed and a 1st rd exit….people keep saying we are 1st in our division, look at our record to this point…blah blah. Anyone who has watched this team the past 6+ weeks or so, knows thank god for the SO, if not im sure we wouldnt even be a playoff team.

  5. Im sorry, after that game last night. Im officially on the “trade Drury” bandwagon.

    His comments after the game last night sicken me. That’s one of the most classless comments i have ever heard from a Captain after a loss.

    That point could get us into the playoffs ??? Home ice advantage ???? What if that point we blew keeps us out of the playoffs ? Keeps us from getting home ice advantage ? What then “Captain” ??

    This is what we did to make our team better ? We got rid of Nylander who was having career years with Jagr, to get an overpaid, overrated “leader” like Drury, who never steps up when we need him the most, and to get a semi overpaid, semi overrated former Devil like Scott Gomez, who seems to never have chemistry with anyone he plays with. On top of that, got rid of Jagr, who i never thought id say this, but is more of a leader than those two combined.

    This team is sad. And im sorry to say, but after that game, i honestly don’t give a full 100% shit aboot them, until they get rid of that pathetic embarrassment of a coach. I cant even say his name anymore, it makes me sick.

    Unfortunately, being a Ranger fan for me, is like killing someone. Doesn’t matter if you only did it one time in your life, you’re still a murderer, and for me, ill always be a Ranger fan no matter what. Which could be bad for my health in years to come, especially if the “coach” is still here.

  6. yeah… the Islanders… its just sad and embarrassing that we always have to think of “less fortunate” Islanders in times like this to feel better as Rangers fans. R we that much more “blessed” than the Fishsticks? I’d rather have Bill Guerin and Doug Weight as leaders of this team than whats his face…

  7. many bloggers here live in dream land. yeah Drury is getting traded or Redden.. WHat are you smoking.. Redden has 6 yrs(I think) on a huge contract he is immovable and Drury is the same.
    Kalinin makes $2 mill, they can dump him in 2 seconds and why that has not been done yet is unexplainable.. Yeah his offense is better then Potters!!I can tell by all the goals he has scored…

    Mara is a nice guy but he is avg. at best can the guy hit the net once in a while.

    Again there are no excuses for the repeated risky and stupid passes by; gomez, naslund, dawes, sjustrom and others…

    these passes lead to no addtl. scoring opptys. offensively and are just a disaster. If the rangers make some minor moves to start and see how that changes things that would be a reasonable strategy.. Really sitting Purcha for 65 % of the games does what?

    Trade Prucha, sit Kalinan, see if you can pick up some complimentary players with an edge and try to change things.

    This loss was created simply by the grey matter between the players ears and that is the problem…

  8. CCCP

    Exactly. I hate it when fans say shit like “Oh well it can be worse, we can be the Isles”. Actually that would be better, cause we’d have a shot at Tavares. We all expect this team to make the playoffs, and possibly win the Cup. Isles fans are expecting to miss the playoffs, and win the Tavares sweepstakes. Big fuggin difference !!

    And im with you, id rather have Guerin, and Weight, cause those old guys can still skate, and they know how to lead their team. That isn’t Scott Gordon’s team, lol that’s Guerin, and Weights team. They’re the players / coach’s of the team, and they’re both having good years, with a shitty team.

    Their PP is way better than Nyr’s, which is sad.

    The only way i want this team to miss the playoffs, is if they have a Flowers style season, ending up in dead last. At least we’ll have a shot at getting a potential Superstar like that kid, who has a lot of hype for being the next big thing out of the draft since Sidney Crabby.

    STUART

    You’re right, they’re not going anywhere, which is depressing.

  9. Dr House
    Try this…It works

    Jiggedy Jig…
    He-haw, He-haw…
    Its Dominic the Donkey

    I’ve been doing it since the end of OT last night; I lost three friends, one kid and my job…but the loss does not bother me anymore!

  10. I hope Drury’s kids spill his coffee on his presents. Or better yet, his fat fuggin wallet that holds his HUGE paycheck that he doesn’t deserve.

    BTW

    What happened on the OT goal, i put on the Bad Girls Club once that idiot Rosen said “score”, was it another soft Hank goal ?

  11. Watch Drury’s comments and see that he was struggling during those comments. He said what he had to not what he wanted, imo.

  12. Hey Guys!

    First off I want to wish you all Happy Holidays. I need to comment on the game. I was listening to the game last night headed out to NJ to do some last min shopping & to visit the GF. I was on the GWB when they went up 3-0, then 4-0. For some reason I went into a cold sweat because that just brought back memories of the MTL game. I did my shopping came back into the car and heard the game was 4-3, listened to Ovechkin tie it up. I turned off the game in disgust – knowing they were going to lose.

    Why would a team sit back on a 4-0 lead? They do what the coach tells them to do. Its one of the worst leads to have in hockey. This is happening over and over again. This team blows leads. I absolutely blame the coaching staff for this. 8 players lost to injury on the Caps and they cant put the nail in the coffin???

    remember that Rangers Q&A where Dave Maloney was hosting. Dru, Gomez, Orr & Dubi were there. Someone asked who was the most overrated player in the NHL. Everyone screamed “CROSBY” now thinking about it. For the money they are making – Gomez & his douchebag arrogant smile & Captain “clutch”. At least Cindy puts the points up.

  13. Asking Drury or anyone to “lead” this team is like hiring one of the Petty family to drive a car after the wheels were removed and saying “see…he can’t drive!”…

  14. Well, I’m glad Drury’s not bothered… but I woke up feeling like someone just told me Santa doesn’t exist.

  15. I don’t understand how Renney can keep his job. This happens to much. All those 2 goal leads they blew the last two seasons. The 4 goal lead last night, the 5 goal lead last season, the 4 goal lead against the Bolts in 07.

    The 4 FUGGIN GOAL LEAD IN GAME 1 OF THE PLAYOFFS AGAINST THE PENS. Had they won that game, who knows what would have happened in that series. They fuggin blew it, then eventually went down 3-0 in the series.

    I don’t understand how this doesn’t get Renney fired already. His “system” is not helping, so why isn’t there a change ?

    Merry Fuggin Christmas !!

  16. this team needs a HUGE shake up. P*SSIES run this team. At least the Bruins had the b*lls to trade Thornton. Everyone is Boston was like WTF!?!?!? But this organization needs a HUGE WAKE UP.

  17. What are the realistic chances of Renney getting fired before the end of the season? I just don’t see it. In fact if they make the 2nd round, he’ll be back again.

  18. I must agree that I am tired of watching the Renney system blow leads and hang on for shootouts. To my recollection, Renney was given this job because of his reputation for working with young players. A few years later, the Rangers are not as young as they once were, nor have those young players taken off as one may have expected.

    Renney must be fired. Even if it isn’t his fault (even though I believe it is), the sporting world is filled with coaches that lose their jobs to spark a team. This situation is no different. We cannot be tricked into believing this team is as good as the points they have compiled. Look at the Devils, twice firing coaches on the doorstep of the playoffs only to prove that simply getting there isn’t enough. I find this very similar.

    Rosival is killing me. A hooking penalty in the offensive zone…really?!!! He should not even be anywhere near there. I don’t care if the rangers sit him and Kalinin, but something must be done and put millions into the owner’s box eveyr night. Something must be done.

    Pink slips for everyone in their stockings!!!

  19. What the players need for Christmas…
    Rangers-to get a new coach (PP, Defensive, or Head)
    Gomez-A new set of shooting skills
    Naslund-new legs
    Zherdev-a thought blocker of some sort to keep anything Renney says out of his head
    Callahan-some lessons on getting the puck through the neutral zone
    Drury-“How to be a Captain for Dummies”, “How to not take a Slapshot in a Wrist Shot Situation for Dummies”
    Dawes-Hydroxycut, new skates
    Voros-fighting lessons from Mike Tyson
    Dubinsky-better minutes or a team that will give him a legitimate shot
    Sjostrom-a better shot
    Orr-relearn how to be a fighter again
    Korpikoski-to be sent to the AHL
    Betts-to keep his dad (Renney)
    Prucha-A new team
    Fritsche-a lesson on hitting
    Rissmiller-a new set of hands
    Rozsival-new fans to cheer him
    Staal-some PP minutes
    Redden-a new contract
    Girardi-a smaller chin
    Mara-Paul Bunyans axe
    Kalinin-a fresh start on +/-
    Potter-a fair chance
    Henrik-a new set of pads (old ones ran out of luck), and a new defensive core in front of him
    Valliquette-to play some more games

    What other teams need for Christmas to beat the Rangers…
    No more shootout
    Renney to stay in place
    keep playing the “defensive system”
    no change on the Powerplay
    No defense to get injured

  20. TOM

    Sadly you’re right. Unless what happened to Ron Wilson happens to Renney. Too many 2nd round exits, finally leading to a firing.

    Slats loves Renney to much. I think that douche is here to stay. It doesn’t help that the “Captain” is always defending him, and saying what a great coach he is, and the rest of the staff.

    As far as im concerned, ill always remember Drury as one thing, the guy who ruined my summer in 07. Nothing he has done with Nyr has turned that around. He’ll always be the Ranger killer to me.

    BTW – Im absolutely LOVING the response to the Sundin Nucks signing. This team really doesn’t need him. Lol, yeah, and guys don’t need to get laid. ahahaha not in this lifetime.

  21. OK here goes: Last night’s game was an embarrassment. Not just for the players but for the fans. It was an EMBARRASSMENT to be a blueshirt fan last night. it was the kind of game that gets coaches fired…

    It was not just a bad game, but an indictment of the Rangers ownership, management, and players. There is no excuse. My question is (since I dont live in NY so dont get a sense of how it works): Does Dolan even care about the Rangers or does he focus on the Knicks and other MSG activities and the Rangers are a “side project” of sorts? If he truely cares, Sather and Renney should be gone. Sather spent most of his tenure putting together a team so bad that (ironically) they couldn’t even compete for a top draft spot, all while missing the playoffs by miles. And Renny? So he got the team to the playoffs? Big deal!?!? With the roster they had, getting to the playoff should have been expected, and they should have been competing for the CUP!! Nobody does less with more than the Rangers.

    Which brings me to the Captain, who was quoted as saying “I’m certainly not going to let it ruin my Christmas and I don’t think anyone here is going to let it ruin their break, either.” THATS THE PROBLEM!!! THEY SHOULD BE PISSED OFF TO THE POINT THEY WANT TO SLEW FOOT SANTA CLAUS!! Yesterday was my 30th birthday and that excuse for a defense let in 5 goals and I let it ruin my birthday!!! And I’m not making 6 large a year!!! GET PISSED DRURY!!! GET PISSED TEAM!!! Messier back in his hayday would have cross checked Ovechkin’s teeth down his throat and would have threw a fit in the locker room after the game. It is UNACCEPTABLE.

    And therein lies the problem. Look at Ovechkin. Whether you like him or not, he loves the game. He has PASSION, you see it everytime he scores; he celebrates like a kid who scored his first goal ever in pee wee hockey. He seeths his love for hockey out of his pores, and he HATES to lose. He got ticked off last night and bowled over three rangers in an effort to score and ,what do you know, he eventually got the tying goal. This team (aside from a few guys) has no passion. Its almost like they say “big deal, we may lose but we still get paid”.

    This problem is from the top down. I say that because the Rangers have a history of being one of the most hapless teams in the NHL. The change has got to come from Dolan. New GM, new coach, new captain, new philosophy.

    OK I’m done.

  22. Orr,
    Couldn’t agree more about the Sundin thing. Not only could they have used him, but in order to get him they would have had to dump one of the many useless defensemen on this team. Addition by subtraction!!

  23. Its funny, its almost like, they were trying to impress Sundin so he could sign here, and now that he’s gone, they’re giving up. Way to go. Now Mats knows he made the right choice by signing with the Nucks, especially when Luongo gets back.

    And the whole point of signing Mats was to get rid of some of these losers. But nope, they’re here to stay. Yaaaay !

  24. Fire Sather.

    That is the root cause of the problem.

    He is a horrible GM and doesn’t really give a shart about anything.

    Rid yourself of him and you can start fresh.

    Of all the defensemen that could have helped this team the tool bag resigns Rozy and overpays Redden by 3 years and about 25 million.

    Very Sad.

    We can not be complacent with anything but the cup.

    Try to steal Shero away from the Penguins.

  25. onecupin67years on

    all right SAM we don’t need a “time out” lioke your kids to get over this loss.

    Kaspar December 24th, 2008 at 11:14 am

    I’ll wait for “onecup” to respond to the questions of “Faith” as it pertains to being a NYRanger fan

    Anyone who has been a fan ,a ranger fan from the pre ’94 cup days is used to this type of play and big loss.
    Kaspar who’s faith do you question ? Mine , I don’t believe ,never have believed in this team, although I was suckered in 05 when they lost against the Sabres, but I came into my senses last year.
    Winning is everything sports and in life , you win the girl, the job interview, etc.

    The Rangers have had some talented teams and players in the
    late 60’s,70’s, 80’s and 90’s. They should have won more than “ONECUP” in my opinion instead of 3 cup finals,
    I’ve seen Bobby Schmautz of the hawks take a slapper from just inside the red line have the puck deflect off of Jim Neilson’s stick at the circle and low by Gilles Villemure for the game winning goal, the rest was history bye,bye series.
    I remember Red Berenson throwing a cross ice pass to ? and Montreal’s bobby rousseau picks off the pass skate in on EDDIE and they lose in OT.
    Like the naked city the Rangers have 8 milloin ways to lose and ,disappoint ,piss you off, etc.
    So, this team is a mild form of the Rangers history , they really haven’t messed up your mind or broke your heart yet, they’re trying but they don’t go far enough into the playoffs or dominate a season like the real heartbreak Rangers of the past have done, that’s why I don’t believe in this team ,they don’t have the talent, they don’t have the class of the real ranger loser’s they’re impostor’s , so don’t take last night or the past few season too seriously . Sure they piss me off, but I expect them to lose , thats what good Ranger teams do best, they tried hard in 94 to lose, but Messier got in the way, there isn’t anyone on this team to get in the way of them losing.

    Merry Christmas to my fellow Ranger fans .

  26. Does standing in the crease and getting punched in the face twice while doing nothing count? That I saw last night.

  27. “Kaspar who’s faith do you question ? Mine , I don’t believe ,never have believed in this team”
    Onecupin67years

    A few lines above my entry someone, I think called “ossie??” was questioning why Ranger fans have no faith…

    If you’ve been a ranger fan a long time its a pretty silly question…a few people responded to “Ossie??” but I figured I’d leave it to a guy who’s call-name is “onecupin67years’ to explain it….

    which you need to change to 69 soon BTW

  28. ORR EVERY COMMENT U HIT RIGHT ON THE HEAD. BEING A SEASON TIX HOLDER I SWEAR I RAN OUT OF THERE BEFORE THE RANGERS COULD EVEN GET OFF THE ICE AFTER THE OT GOAL. WHAT A DISGRACE AND DRURY AND GOMEZ I HAVE SAID FOR A LONG TIME ARE WASTES AND REDDEN SHOULD BE FLAT OUT EXECUTED.

  29. Well, we oldtimers know what happened last night. We saw a player who can dominate like the alltime greats in Ovechkin. If you ever wanted to know what Bobby Hull, Mario Lemieux were like in their prime you got a taste of it last night. The word is “relentless”. It’s the highest level skill matched with determination that put these players–and Ovechkin–at the top of the hockey food chain. Small solace that we blew this game to such an elite player; I was going to praise myself for lighting a fire under Nigel last night, and then he caps off excellent passes that lead to goals with a dreadful pass that leads to a devastating goal against. Oh well, Rome wasn’t built in a day, and the Rangers are certainly very much still a work in progress.

  30. Headstrong- You are right it was an embarrassment. The Knicks FINALLY got rid of Isaiah after they hit rock bottom, so since the Rangers already hit rock bottom during the 7 year drought and Sather (even though he was a LARGE part of that drought) and Renney have brought about playoff appearances they are not near rock-bottom enough to actually have him notice that there needs to be a change in the organization. MSG/Knicks/Rangers make up something like 1% of the revenues for Cablevision, so Dolan could care less. We need to have 18,000 people in the Garden on an NBC or Versus National game screaming FIRE SATHER and FIRE RENNEY the whole time for them to even notice that the fans are getting sick of the garbage that we pay top-dollar to watch. Either that or 18,000 empty seats, maybe that would get them to notice even faster…

  31. 1979 Giants fan protests, season-ticket burning…a plane pulling the sign “15 years of lousy football…we’ve had enough!”

    Led to their first playoff season in 15 years and a dozen more plus three superbowls!!

    power to the people!!

  32. Why is it that nobody has the guts to call Sather out for his refusal to even speak to the press anymore? Would any other GM in NY get away with this nonsense?

  33. Tom foolery

    I said the same thing last week…shows you how little anyone cares about NYR..Brian Burke hasn’t shuy up since 2003, he’s flapping his gums every day in Toronto,Bob gainey makes bi-weekly ststements in Mont…Sather?

    he gives more time to the western canadian press or europeon press than all NY press combined and someone should be writing headlines about it…

  34. Kaspar,
    It is beyond ridiculous. This guy is accountable to no one. Dolan has given him a lifetime position and we can’t even get the media involved to force his hand like they did with Isiah.

  35. This former horse player would like to bet some REAL MONEY that unless Renney is fired and some dead-wood is culled from this roster, this team finishes behind Pitt, New Jersey and Philly, all of whom have measurably outplayed the Rangers, going on seven weeks, now.

    And my question for you Mr Fat Cat Sather is this: What is Jim Schoenfeld to you, chopped liver? He did a good job coaching in Washington, Hartford and some other places. This team needs a lube job and some new sparkplugs. How about it? Or does Renney stay by virtue of his compelling, ingratiating personality, and nothing else? The team has quit on him, Slats – you need a roadmap?

  36. True fans bleed RW&B on

    I almost fell over when I read the drury comments after last nights game! In my book, he’s officially the worst captain I’ve ever seen in 20years of this team and he’s the fattest POS on this team. I’m irate reading that, eff him. This team would be well served if he pulled a Joe sakic and someone like Gomez or naslund take the C. Wtf captain says he’s happy after that blown point?! Does messier offer tutelage to douch bags?!!

  37. Tell you what..

    I’ll take Crispoli,Bruneau and any other Islander D you want to name, for Redden Kallinin and Roszival…even up.

  38. Christmas is a major holiday. Hanukkah is a minor holiday with the same theme as most Jewish holidays. They tried to kill us, we survived, let’s eat.

    So let’s hope that we can survive in the New Year! And there is something delicious on menu for us always hungry and always loyal Rangers Fans! Merry Hanukkah!

  39. Merry Christmas everyone!

    I’ll try to forget about last night’s debacle (at least for the next two days), but I will now join in the “FIRE RENNEY” chants at MSG from now on.

  40. “They tried to kill us, we survived, let’s eat”
    CCCP

    hey CCCP happy Hanukkkah!

    At first when I read that line I thought you meant being a rangers fan….I thought “this guy takes this way too seriously”

    Leaving my self

    Happy Hanukkah
    Merry Xmas too all.

    K

  41. True fans bleed RW&B on

    And I’d offer Ted Nolan the first interview to replace renney.

    When will hank get mad enough to have renney fired?!

    Btw: the very laxidazical approach renney and Chris Drouchebag bring to the game is the exact reason a player like avery flourished here. He does give a sh!t! He hates losing! Did you see renney on the rozi penalty? Wasn’t phased! And even chris Dbag said he’s having the best christmas of us all…because he’s taken almost 3million to the bank so far this year! This team is a joke. Weinman, please don’t sugar coat any more of this horse crap.

  42. Last year we were asking why Sather never spoke to the press. Jagr was wondering why Sather didn’t call him the entire month of June also. Then Sather gave him five minutes to think about a lowball offer and then accused Jagr of following the money to Russia. Nylander, Sykora, Kaspar, Shanahan, Ortmeyer — they all got the arrogant Sather treatment. Is Sather still even alive? Is Schoenfeld alive? Has anyone seen anyone in Ranger management recently?

  43. orr – it was 2 weeks from end of game saturday (so you did barely 1/2 a week). no wonder you still have your left or right after losing that bet too

  44. ok went to the game and it was worse in person. at 4-1 and the way the caps were playing I could see it coming

    ok 1st the positives

    Staal (HE IS THE FUTURE CAPTAIN) – some very nice hits
    Cally
    Drury with 3 goals
    Valley, prucha and Fritsche (ok i am reaching but i have to have some positives)
    mara – shows passion
    Z – still worldclass playmaker albeit at times
    rum and cokes after the game

  45. Damn i thought it was a week already, i wasn’t keeping track of the time. And i thought it was one week, what the fugg.

    I gotta read before i get all excited aboot bets. Actual bets, not the way Renney gets excited aboot Betts.

  46. ok the bad some in general

    DOLAN – i despise him as much as anyone here hates Renney
    Sather – needs to go. first hide his checkbook then 1 way tix to Banff
    Moe Larry and Curly coaches – all need to go I vote for Torts
    Redden Rozy Kalinin
    some very bad passes – Dawes on the tieing goal especially
    overall lack of passion
    3rd line – pretty invisible most nights. Dubinsky has been a major dissapointment

  47. “You throw this (loss) in the garbage can as far as I’m concerned and you move on,” Drury said.

    How about we throw you in there along with the loss…

  48. AO is so far better than Sid the Kid it isn’t funny. I would definitely trade any of our players for him. yes including Henrik

  49. I am off to Israel tomorrow for a week. Looking forward to a great experience. Happy holidays to all!

    Ranger comment:

    At least I’ll have a week’s rest from the team. I am ashamed to be a fan of this organization right now.

  50. Question… how many games have the Rangers “thrown in the garbage” in the last couple weeks? I recall the Devil game and now this debacle. Any others?

    And hey Capt. Drury? Just how many games is one team allowed to throw away a season when your power play and offensive output is as pathetic as the Rangers?

  51. LI Joe

    I have always said that. Cindy is a good player, but Ovie has every single quality in a hockey player that a coach could ask for.

  52. vogs the answer is in the coaching. Drury could not have said it clearer in saying we play a well coached team next. get a new coach and asst coaches (and gm and owner) and the rest will take care of itself

  53. onecupin67years on

    Yeah ,Gerardi sure did look scared when AO bitch slapped him in the crease.
    gerardi is a finalist in the ranger wus of the year balloting.maggot rhymes with _____

    my letter to santi claus.
    dear santi, please give mr.dolan 2 balls and a 1/2 of a brain
    so he can fire sather and renney
    , I”ll be good on 09, onecup

  54. lI Joe, congrats on a series of good posts by you today. and yes Cindy can’t even touch the hockey player that Overchkin is. Not really even close.

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