In 6th with Montreal

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The Rangers had an optional practice today in Greenburgh before they head to Montreal for tomorrow night’s game. Both teams are tied for 6th place in the Eastern Division, which makes this game particularly telling.

Rangers coach John Tortorella said he liked the lines that skated on Sunday, which doesn’t necessarily mean he will keep them. Obviously, Nikolai Zherdev, Scott Gomez and Sean Avery got a lot of time. Fredrik Sjostrom skated in the third line with Brandon Dubinsky at center and Ryan Callahan, Markus Naslund was with Chris Drury and Nik Antropov, and Lauri Korpikoski skated with Blair Betts and Colton Orr in the fourth.

0316torts

Not surprsingly then, Orr, Betts, Korpi, Sjostorm and Aaron Voros were at the optional skate with backup goalie Steve Valiquette. Orr got a little one-on-one coaching from Benoit Allaire, and worked on shooting the puck high into the net.

Tortorella said he thought Dan Girardi did the right thing trying to protect Zherdev. He said it too many players in the NHL went after each other for good, hard hits, but with the Rangers facing Philly on the second straight night with potential for facing each other in the playoffs, “it wasn’t a bad thing at all.” Girardi got a 2 min. instigator penalty, a 10 minute misconduct and 5 mins. for fighting.

“I hate losing him for that amount of time, but you usually end up killing those things off and you get through when it’s done for the right reason and that’s what happened with this,” Tortorella said.

Drury said he liked the energy the new players are bringing to the Rangers. Which is exactly what they need this time of year. In his own words with the audio below…

0316drury

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116 Comments

  1. onecupin69years on

    I was surprised by Girardi’s kamize attack, I didn’t think he had it in him. Good Boy.

  2. First off, Pierre Macguire is a jackass. That was NOT a bad fighting penalty. He didn’t go after Richards because he himself, or Mara, Callahan, Staal, etc were hit. One of the stars (read “wimps”) was hit, and he defended him. If Crosby or Ovechkin are hit, is it wrong for Godard or Brashear to go nuts? Absolutely not. People fondly remember Dave Semenko protecting #99, so why can’t a similar star player (with much less talent, obviously) be protected? Ideas like this, as well as Bettman in charge are what I like to call the NHL’s brain tumors. They need to be removed.

    And I will gladly admit, unlike most people on this board it would seem, that I was wrong about Avery. I know the “team is different with him” yada yada yada, but these last four games are truly an example of what he can bring to a team when he’s on. He’s playing very well, and he’s bringing out the best of the team.

    Now, the question remains, what will he bring when the team isn’t already amped up to fight for the playoffs? But honestly, I think the most important times of a season are when you NEED a win, or NEED to show some ballls when facing adversity, and so far, this team is answering the bell. Their offense still blows, but that’s still due to the lack of a pure scoring winger. Imagine this team right now, with a guy like Marian Hossa or Kovalchuk on Gomez’ wing? Man would they be fun to watch.

    Also, and call me crazy, but I like Mike Milbury. Maybe it’s because he is hockey’s version of Isiah Thomas and his ruined Knicks are the ruined Islanders, but his commentary is always spot on (at least when he’s disagreeing with Macguire)…

  3. “I was surprised by Girardi’s kamize attack, I didn’t think he had it in him. Good Boy”

    Onecup

    there are good penalties to take and bad ones…thats a good one

    but you know the only way to combat skill players getting head-hunted or nailed(even though it was clean) is to have an Avery or Callahan nail Gagne or Brieire the same way

    Richards?

    He was right back pestering 5 minutes later

  4. Danny G & Pauly must have both been dumped and cheated on by their gf’s, cause they’re been mean SOB’s the season. Or maybe anngy G is just pissed that he was playing with Redden, eh either way.

    Drury likes the energy of the new players. I wonder what he thinks of his own “energy” that he’s bringing to the team. Im impressed with the way he can chew on his mouth piece while skating to the penalty box when he takes a lazy penalty.

  5. I loved how on the NBC broadcast they kept going on and on about how the hit dubinsky took saturday was so clean, “Obviously shoulder to shoulder”, yet every time they showed that replay, it looked like a shoulder to the face to me…

  6. sam (not the great Weinman) on

    Baumer,

    Milbury has ‘some’ good analysis. But he’s a bruins fan and celtics fan and rest of boston teams fans. he took a shot at the knicks and rangers 2 NBC telecasts ago about the number of championship banners that are hanging in MSG as opposed to C’s banners. Ergo, he’s just another bostonian scumbag that dominates the airwaves and uses his position to prop up his boston teams.

  7. And now it’s off to Montreal to face a team that has been playing very much like the Rangers for the last month, win one lose some. A very hungry team with the man who does the dealing filling in as head coach. Gainey will be really pissed if they don’t make the playoffs. I really hope the Rangers can continue to play the same as they did yesterday. It would look good on the habs to get spanked at home. The Habs have been good against the Rangers lately, a turn around would be a nice change, and a badly need 2 points. Go Rangers!!

  8. Personally, I think that the hit on Dubi was shoulder to shoulder. If he took that shoulder to the face, he would have been seeing birds fly around the top of his head. Plus his face wasnt red at all when they showed him on the bench afterwards.

  9. jeffluke

    I think CCCP voted for Morris last week…

    He said “it felt good” to do it

  10. Now I’m going to admit that my preseason prognostications were not perfect…I had Boston finishing 9th…go ahead and laugh…I did have Columbus and Phoenix amking playoffs though…that took guts..the Jackets look good and lets face it Gretzky would be fired a long time ago if he werent who he is….

    But the all time guttiest call has to go to EJ Hradek from ESPN

    can you belive he is picking…..the Redwings to win the cup???

    Man…thats laying it on the line…what an outspoken single-minded individual!!!

    http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/blog/index?entryID=3984527&name=hradek_ej

  11. CCCP

    Lay off that sauce man!!! You probably voted for Sydney Crosby again by accident like you did for the all star game and People mags sexiest man alive!!

  12. Kaspar, I think that the only team who could challenge Detroit in the West this year are the Calgary Flames….

    Figure Flames represent the West and the Rangers represent the East….and then we can have the perfect matchup between Keenan vs Torts

  13. The Stanley Cuth….sounds like something Aaron Voros would say…….

    Voros, “I am thhoooo excited…We justh won the Sthhhlaney Cuth”

  14. The lowest-ranked team to win the championship is the Devils, who won the Cup as the East’s fifth seed in 1995.

  15. And unfortunately the Devils went on to win the Cup in 2003 against the Ducks… and join the Detroit Red Wings as the only teams since 1990 to win three Stanley Cups.

  16. “The Rangers and Flames will play for the Stanley Cuth (bert)”

    LIQUID
    The new patient; tongue-tied Sean Avery will either have the greatest Stanley Cup (Cuth) ever or spontaneously explode during a post-game interview

  17. thanks cccp.

    looks like it’s not enough to just sneak into the playoffs. 6-8 seeds are speed bumps to eventual cup winners.

  18. cakewalk

    hahaha nice. i applaud either your sense of humor or your commodore’s computing speed

  19. UESBlueshirt on

    Additionally,

    Edmonton ’06 is the only 8th seed to make it to the finals.

    Buffalo in ’99 and Anaheim in ’03 made it as the 7th seed.

  20. You guys seriously are hysterical. Everyone here is wondering what the hell Im laughing at.

  21. Mako –

    Interested in Why you would’nt want to play Washington over the Devils or Bruins??- You don’t think they have the weakest goaltending???

    Gerr

  22. Hey, once you are in the playoffs, anything is possible. I remember the one series where 8th seed Sharks beat the top seed Wings.

    Let’s Go Rangers!!!

  23. Can DREARY show any LESS emotion? He must be the most boring human being to ever to walk this planet. I don’t see how this guy can be a captain in such an emotional sport. And of all the guys who played great yesterday, Drury was one of the few who didn’t. But I’d rather not focus on the few negatives of yesterday.

    I know it’s been said, and I’m not the “told you so” type, but the people who doubt Sean Avery are just way off base. Forget the agitating part of his game, this guy is a hell of a hockey player. The more you watch him, the more you realize that he has the most hockey sense of any of the Ranger forwards. I think Marc Staal has the most hockey sense out of any of the Ranger defensemen. You want to question this? Go back and watch some of the LITTLE, subtle but very important plays Avery made. The rinkwide pass to Zherdev to set up a great chance is one that immediately comes to mind. Throw on top of that the fact that he’s a great skater, with a WELL above-average shot and I think Avery could be a 50-60 point guy in this league if he really concentrated on his offense for a full 82 games.

    Generally though, the team is playing much better. They really need to beat a struggling Habs team on the road now, though. They’re in a bit of a win one/lose one trend, and they’re in desperate need of some kind of streak.

  24. GerryD

    Im not worried about their goaltending. Im worried about our D not keeping up with Ovechkin, Semin, Backstrom, Federov, Green etc. They will expose Redden for the hack he is. Im telling you Im warry of their firepower. Our offense doesnt come close to what they have. I trust LQ to stand on his head. I just worry that the D will have a problem putting a lid on their Offense.

    I mean when they need a goal or two, Ovechkin will give it to them.

  25. I love how Drury says “everyone in here’s been playing better the last couple weeks” … what a bozo. The guy has like 2 goals in 26 games or something. Everyone’s playing better, except him. Maybe he’s still happy with one point?

    What’s the Rangers record with Avery now? 57W 25L 9OTL I think?

    I don’t think anyone can deny there IS an Avery factor. Idk what the hell it is, but he gets out there and causes so much hell it works to his teammates favor. He’s also so big on “believing in himeself and the team” (he’s said it many times) I think that he makes the Rangers go out with a ‘bad-ass’ attitude where they think they can beat everyone. Can’t say enough good things about what he’s done.

  26. I’ll admit it, I didn’t want Avery back… and I am quite happy to eat my words thus far He’s doing a great job — keep it up!!

  27. UESBlueshirt on

    Open question:

    As a rational fan, other than a Stanley Cup win, what type of finish would validate this season’s team?

    I’d say going to the conference finals with a caveat that they last at least 6 games.

    I don’t think the Rangers can play the “us against the world” card quite like some of the previous Cinderella teams that make deep playoff runs, but this team has had its fair share to overcome. Losing big personalities like Jagr, Shanahan and initially Avery in the off-season certainly changed the make up of the team. Starting out with a shortened training camp and the European tour, which I suppose in the short run benefited the team in the 1st month of the season and then all the play that led to the dismissal of Renney. Considering that most analysts picked them as a 6-10 seed in the conference, any advancement past the 1st round is a decent showing. Moving past the 2nd round represents progress over the previous 2 years and putting up a strong showing in the conference finals means that a lot of things went right.

  28. UES,
    I’d say as long as they don’t get swept in the Conference Finals that would validate this team. I wouldn’t be happy to see them lose in 5, but I wouldn’t be miserably either (so long as they played hard and nobody was directly to blame).

  29. I think if this team makes it to the conference finals it would be an absolute miracle. Getting into the playoffs is going to be a struggle, let alone winning 2 playoff series.

  30. you know i sat in 327 yesterday and overheard some guys talking about how maybe rangers should switch redden and naslund, let naslund play D and let redden be a forward, i laughed at it, but maybe it wouldnt be such a bad idea…

  31. Lev
    If you mention Redden too much around here it causes Ranger Rick to have bad dreams (and long dreams) where Redden works part time at a salon…all kinds of wierd things..be carefull…see previous post

  32. Let’s not forget that 95% of the history of how different seeds have done in the playoffs come before the OTL, and now the shootout system. The races are much tighter now because of all the extra points that get thrown into the standings, so that really skews things. I think there is more parity in the league now than ever before, so I wouldn’t be totally shocked to see someone lower than a 5 seed win the Cup.

  33. Pavel,

    I hear Gretzky is thinking of sitting Prucha; replacing him with unretired Sergie Momesso…so a pro-prucha contingent can start chanting his name and get him fired; this way he can get his 1000 goal a** and his gambling wife the hell out of Phoenix!

  34. Oh boy….they keep mentioning Redden….Ranger Rick his writing a novel as we speak…..

  35. UESBlueshirt on

    Rob L,

    I agree that even getting to the dance is looking tenuous as of now.

    However, in terms of the season to date I look at it that up until Feb. the playoffs should have been a near certainty. At some point losing grip on the division conference and division leads weren’t completely unexpected but with the way the team played in the last dozen or so games of Renney’s tenure it put their season in jeopardy.

    To me, not making the playoffs would be an absolute failure, maybe not a Mets 2007/2008 or Jets 2008 collapse but a huge underperformance based on how well they were positioned for the first 40-45 games of the season.

    I don’t like looking at the scenario of missing the playoffs as necessarily a validation that Renney needed to be let go (although I didn’t like how he handled the team most of this year) or that Sather needs to be fired. Ultimately it’s the players on the ice that determine the success of the team and I’d feel much more contempt for the likes of Drury, Redden, Voros than any of the suits.

  36. Mako-

    Couldnt agree more. I think Washington’s offense is downright scary. Even if Hank plays on his head, I’m not confident we can score the requisite 4 goals it will take to beat them.

    Lost in all of this recent play is the fact that Sather should still be fired at the end of the season. We have NO shot at signing any significant offensive players this off season, thanks to Roszival, Redden & Drury’s contracts.

  37. jerkins perkins(mike in ia) on

    DanNYC
    March 16th, 2009 at 1:59 pm
    I loved how on the NBC broadcast they kept going on and on about how the hit dubinsky took saturday was so clean, “Obviously shoulder to shoulder”, yet every time they showed that replay, it looked like a shoulder to the face to me…

    dan- i saw the replay once and immediately seen richards shoulder hit dubinskys shoulder. it was nowhere near his face. i liked that doobs got us a powerplay but it was kinda weak to lay there and hold his face like that, and if there wsas no penalty he wouldve taken himself out of the play and philly couldve gotten a good scoring chance from it.

  38. jerkins perkins(mike in ia) on

    jeffluke
    March 16th, 2009 at 2:13 pm
    Someone please vote for derek morris in the poll. It’s getting awkward.

    haha jeff yea it shows 16 votes now, but earlier today there was 0. i mean hes a good addition and improvement over kalinin and half the d we already have but antro whos got 3 goals, 2 assists, has been more effective, avery has far exceeded my expectations already, and torts just rocks!!! hes really proved to be a better coach than renny, and also has given this team a style to play that suits their abilities. theyre not that big so by playing an uptempo crash the net style they not only score more, but spend less time in their zone and even when in the offensive zone they cycle and win loose puck battles more which in turn tres out the d, and causes turnovers and penalties. last game we earned most of our pps by crashin the net, tiring out the d to make lazy hooks or trips, and just outworkin them. but i agree morris has been very steady on d and is better than i expected. i like that he shoots alot and shots hard too on the pp. makes reddens weak attempts look pathetic, but redden actually has a decent shot. he just doesnt use it. hed rather wrist it from the point.

  39. JANE,

    At first we were both unsure, but after further review you were spot on yesterday when you answered my question regarding Girardi during the 1st intermission.

    It was nice to meet one of the people who constantly keep us posted on our NYRs.

    Thanks for everything.

  40. Does anyone have a solution to listening to nbc/versus announcers? (Definately opening this up for some funny responses on purpose). I ask this because I went to the game on Sunday and had an absolute blast. I realized it was because I didn’t need to process and listen to anyone’s opinions on refereeing or who got screwed over, etc.

    My solution is to invite the 86 year old man who lives above me in my apartment complex to come down and announce ranger games for me from now on. It’ll be better than the versus guys for sure!

  41. Jane,

    Even though you never asked trainer Jim Ramsey about his watch, I was able to locate someone that had one, and I traded two older TAG watches that I never wear, for that TAG Monaco. What a beautiful watch. Thanks for the help. Grrrrr. Just kidding, but I was able to find the watch. It is a thing of beauty.

  42. Ha, thank you :) Ha, Rammer. Good stuff. Is he an intense guy? He always looks like he is laughing and joking around on the bench.

  43. He was the “Stay the f*** off the logo” guy.

    Heck of a first impression.

    I think he is probably an awesome guy to people in his circle.

  44. Glad they finally broke up Redden-Rozsival

    What the hell took Tortorella so long to figure that out?

  45. The Esteemed Doodie Machetto on

    noonan, I think he just wanted to give Mara to Morris since they had played together. And since he thought Staal and Girardi were his best two defensemen, he wanted to pair them, since he’s all about putting out the top guys for the most time instead of having balance throughout.

    Jane, seriously, good work.

  46. Me thinks Mara and Stallzy are the two best defenseman. I like Dmorris too. Mara is fighting a nagging injury I still think tho.

    Redden totally rubbed off on Girardi. His play has been off

  47. alex b (the poster formely known as czechthemout!!!!) on

    Any one that’s played with Redden has had their play suffer. He and Rozival have got to be moved in the off season no matter what it takes.

  48. Waive Redden and pay him not to play is what I suggested. You couldn’t trade him if you included Lundqvist and consecutive first rounders.

  49. Ha, oh that crazy Rammer. I heard that Torts almost had a stroke when he came in to the locker room that first day, and Voros was sitting naked, dead center on the logo, eating Ben and Jerrys and a can of lard at the same time, and washing it down with a Dublin Dr Pepper. I think that is why Torts and Rammer were so intense about the whole “logo” thing.

  50. ZzZz 13 ZzZz Rules the First line!! says Greg L. on

    Staalzy huh ..not bad.. I like Staalsie…either way is good.

    Jane , sweet badge thingy there , not fair , can I get one…aww takes to long , plus I have to be a reporter!!
    Does yer husband get one? If so can you steal me his?

    Torts is so tough ,,,he yells at Schoenfield to get HIM a donut!!!!

    (my old one) Torts is so tough ,,,when he stares at Messier …Mess looks down , and away…

    Rangers are looking fine , Antro is looking good out there and boy can he shoot!! Zherdev now has someone to pass to on the powerplay!! Looks like Torts is bringing out the best in a few Rangers . Staalsie is used on the pp now and is showing more signs of that offensive ability his brothers have.

    Just a though… We traded 3 players for one with phoenix and we gave them 2 promising young forwards with the defensman , why could n’t we have had phoenix throw in the youngest Staal brother?

  51. I’m scratching my head. Pay Redden 6million to not play? I don’t think that hit comes off the cap because of his age.

    * noonan
    March 16th, 2009 at 5:25 pm
    Waive Redden and pay him not to play is what I suggested. You couldn’t trade him if you included Lundqvist and consecutive first rounders.

  52. Johnny LaRue on

    Before the season started, a Devil fan I know told me that the Rangers had lost their best player. I said, “You mean Jagr?” He said, “No, Avery!”

    I didn’t totally buy into his viewpoint, although now I am starting to come around to thinking may have been right. I wonder what kind of season Jagr would have had last year with the current coach and system. He would probably still be here.

  53. it is f*cked up and very sad to see a player like Jaromir Jagr… one of the most talented hockey players to EVER play this game is wasting himself away in that Russian “back yard” of a hockey league!

  54. LaRue,
    I really like the perspectives you bring to this board. I agree totally too. Awesome point about Jagr. He was on his way out of the NHL but had he gotten a 85-90s point season he’d still be here (both contractual through the auto-option and as a player team’s coveted).

    Where’s all the people who said the 52W 23L 9OTL Avery record was hog-wash? I give MAD props/respect to Doodie for man’ing up over here (same for Chris). Well done guys, you earned a HUGE amount of respect for me (and I’ll never heckle you fella’s for having cahones to admit you’re wrong). But the rest of you cowards don’t even deserve the right to read this board. You join the likes of Beer Me! Ughhhh…

  55. Hey, I got all sorts of crap from many on here for wanting Avery back. I don’t give half a rat turd who criticized me for it or who didn’t want him, because he is here and is our best player right now in my imagination.

  56. it is f*cked up and very sad to see a player like Jaromir Jagr… one of the most talented hockey players to EVER play this game is wasting himself away in that Russian “back yard” of a hockey league!

    Yup, couldn’t agree more. Hopefully he n get out of that contract next season, and sign here. That would be fuggin awesome. Trade Nazzy back to the Nucks.

    I miss the crap out of him. He still has massive talent to play in this league.

  57. Orr,
    The problem with re-signing Jagr wasn’t his interest, it was the money. He said he wouldn’t resign to the Rangers unless he was the centerpiece which meant getting at least what Gomez is making. That was simply not an option, and it still isn’t, bud.

    Had Jagr gotten that 84 points (for the auto-option) it would have only had a 4.9million cap hit if Jagr stayed. HUGE difference.

  58. Doodie Machetto on

    I’m still not buying that “avery record.” I’m just saying he’s been very good. I think there’s been a lot more at work than Avery. But no question that he’s been very good, especially yesterday.

  59. Personally I think Mara is a big body back there, but he is no threat on offense and has difficulty handling the puck cleanly. If Sanguetti can play or Del Zotto, I don’t resign Mara unless as a seventh “D”.

    Redden has been better, but still isn’t physical enough to be effective on a consistent basis.

    Morris has solidified the defense a bit. He’s much better than Kalinin and adds a look we didn’t have on the power play, but is still soft, but not as soft as Kalinin. Good pick-up

    Antropov comes off the far boards well and can handle the puck in tight. Good pick-up

    I thought there were too many calls yesterday and there was little flow to the game. Certainly we were against the wall and had to have a win and our specialty teams came through and got us a win.

    I like the way Girardi didn’t hesitate to drop the gloves. With a chin like his, you’d think he would fight more. And I thought the Richards ghit on Zherdev was a charge, not clean. Richards has gotten his rear end beat each time he has fought Avery.

    We win tomorrow night we are in and on our way. We lose tomorrow night and it’s back to square one.

  60. vogs-I like Antro. He’s been a good fit with the Rangers. I really hope they can resign him and he views the fit as more important than getting $$$$ but the reality is I’d say it’s 40-60 in favor of him coming back. Some team like Nashville will throw him $4 million for like 4 years.

    I like Mara too and I think he should be resigned. The more I follow the Pack, the more I see that Michael Sauer is ready for the big dance and can come in next year. He’s grown into his body and just looks like a smooth skater out there plus he has a nice shot from the point. His mission is to get through the rest of this year, have a good end of regular season/playoffs, and most importantly stay healthy. If he can succeed at these three things I think he has an excellent chance to make the roster next year with his small contract.

  61. Johnny LaRue on

    Yeah, I miss JJ too, ORR. He would have been so much happier playing under Torts and I get the feeling he would be tearing it up out there.

  62. And BTW as far as cap hits go ladies and gents; Sauer’s is about $847,000 Bobby Sanguinetti is about $857,000 and Potter’s is about $550,000 I believe. So there’s a way to save some cash next year.

  63. The thing with Sauer is his health. He’s been hurt a lot, I worry about guys like that, especially making the jump to the NHL.

    As far as Mara goes. With Staal, Redden, Girardi and Rozival, plus maybe Morris, Sauer, Sanguetti… Mara is a 7th dman on a good team. You’re certainly not going to trade Rozival or Girardi unless of course you get back a top scoring winger or you sign Hossa, then I say re-sign Mara

    Antropov fits in well with the team, he’s seem to have helped Zherdev a bit, too. But tomorrow night is key. We need a win tomorrow night, to give us some breathing room for a moment.

  64. Linda (voted for Morris, he needed votes!) on

    i can’t tell you guys enough how entertaining and great your posts are! People look at me oddly at work because you have me cracking up whenever I can check in!!

    Jane, EXCELLENT WORK!!! You rock girl!

    Thrashers are embarrassing the Caps right now 4-0, and I bet the Caps score now since I typed that.

    LMAO @ Daffy Duck Voros, and the Ben & Jerrys/Lard combo..wow, talk about a cast iron stomach lol

    I cant believe the VS guys are actually concentrating on the game tonight! Miracles do happen.

  65. vogs

    The problem is that Girardi is a good fifth or sixth defenseman on a good team —- not even close to a top 2. He should be traded this summer while his rep is greater than his actual performance.

    doodie

    Good job in dealing with Avery. As True Fans says, you deserve respect for showing up and addressing it.

  66. Carp what is the deal here on

    TF – i’ve been debating the avery matter elsewhere. stop trying to call people out with the coward talk. people fought in wars for the right for others to have free speech or even remain silent if they so choose. out of respect for carp and jane and others on the board i’ve chosen to stop arguing with you. i’ve moved on can you. and it should be of no concern to you whether i choose to read this board or not.

    LIJ

  67. Riguere

    If Del Zotto and Sanguetti pan out the Rangers will have a defenseman to trade.

  68. Won’t the Rangers keep Del Zotto in the AHL for at least two years, isn’t that how it is usually done?

  69. ZzZz 13 ZzZz Rules the First line!! says Greg L. on

    Doodie , when you put your foot in yer mouth about Avery did you taste sock? I loved Avery when he was here …hated him when he left…then heard he maybe coming back..i was estatic!! Now hes here… WE NOW HAVE OUR HEARTBEAT back Doodie!! I said it then and I say it now…Avery and Jagr were our Heartbeats , nice to have one back …

  70. ZzZz 13 ZzZz Rules the First line!! says Greg L. on

    Did ya hear me ? …it’s nice to have one back!!!! BTW TRUEFanz , yeah Jagr cost alota dough but he would take less , being the centerpiece on the “team” not the salary structure. Jagr is not greedy like that , if we have a chance to get him next year …Do it!! Torts fires Lighning boltz out his azz ansd Jagr would lead this team in points .Forsure!!!

  71. Pavel – I’m totally with you, but NYR has this thing about never vaulting some guy up to the home club, like they are scared of doing damage. The only damage they do is in not taking a chance.

  72. alex b (the poster formely known as czechthemout!!!!) on

    Still awaiting word from the league if Braden Coburn will be suspended. I’m not holding my breath though because after all,he didn’t make a joke about a former girlfriend like someone we know,he just tried to decapitate a player. There is of course no difference in the severity of the two violationce,right Gary?

  73. If Del Zotto and Sanguinetti pan out, we’ll be set for the next few years after they do.

    Staal – Del Zotto
    Sanguinetti – Girardi

    Next defensive pair is a crap shoot.

  74. vogs-Sauer’s been fine since he came back this season (knock on wood). Remember, he played a very physical game and is pretty big so sometimes athletes get injured a lot while they’re still developing in the 18-22 age group; remember when Jose Reyes from the Mets used to pull his hamstring all the time when he first got to the Majors?

    Why is everyone so down on Girardi? He’s a good dman. Sure he’s had a rough year but he’s homegrown and cheap. He had to play half the year with Redden, that’d hurt Bobby Orr’s numbers.

    And if Del Zotto and Sangs are ready (not next year, maybe Sangs makes the team out of camp) the problem is they’re both offensive DMan. To win a championship you need a good cop (puck rusher)/bad cop(hitter) for each d pair. One has to go with Staal and the other has to go with Girardi. Sauer is a bad cop too.

    Mara isn’t a 7th dman he’s a 2nd pair guy on a decent team and a 3rd pair guy on a contender. I’d like him back.

    If anyone is gonna get traded this summer it’s Rozi during draft weekend because he makes too much money but is only for 3 years and he hasn’t really done much in Torts’s system. Unfortunately some bad contract is gonna have to come back with it. Prediction; if the Rangers don’t think they can resign Antro, I can easily see Rozi to EDM for Penner.

  75. a few of points:

    We did have a big time scorer – Jagr
    We would have a good chance at the Cup with him
    but we did get Avery back and a chance to make the playoffs
    once you get in the playoffs anything can happen

    The hit on Dubi by Richards was an elbow not shoulder to shoulder, not shoulder to head
    Richards is a dirty sneaky player

    Just because a guy does not score a goal, does not mean he had a bad game or games. Betts is very valuable to the team
    for his ability to win faceoffs and kill penalties and forecheck
    just like Drury
    Yes, Capt Mudane could score a few more goals and hopefully he will score some big goals in the playoffs and down the strech, but he has been playing very well! Also, Redden has been very good also.
    Roszival still needs to shake off that Renny dust, that has him not shooting and being tentative

  76. MikeA

    I like things about Girardi; he doesn’t get hurt, he hits, he has some offensive ability. But he gets beaten once a period at his own blueline, chases himself out of position repeatedly when in the defensive zone, and makes at least one terrible decision with the puck per game, usually in his own end. Top defensemen on other teams simply do not come with that kind of downside.

    If the idea is to win Cups, you don’t win Cups with Dan Girardi as a top 4, much less a top 2, guy. Top 6, maybe. I hope I’m wrong and Torts can get him there —- but he has some distance to travel.

  77. Even if the Rangers still had Jagr they’re not ready to win a Cup yet. They haven’t been ready to win a Cup in quite some time, since probably the mid 90s. I don’t mean to be a Debbie Downer but to win a Cup you need elite players and the Rangers only really have Lundquvist. You need a dominant power forward (Graves, Cole, E. Staal, Vinny L, etc.) and a real power play QB (I know Carolina was the exception to that rule), and at least 4 role players who can be what I call 20-20 guys (20Gs, 20As-grinders).

    The pieces are in the system but it’s gonna take a little time. We waited 7 seasons to make the playoffs, what’s another 2-3 to wait for Grachev/AA/Del Z/Sangs/Hagelin/Stepan/etc. to develop? Patience.

    The best case scenario for this season is to get to the dance and be THAT low seed team that gets hot and takes out a few contenders with them.

    Half the battle was won at deadline day by not doing anything THAT stupid, and the other half will be making the playoffs and having a good draft.

    Tomorrow is gonna be tough, hopefully Orr can handle LaRaque and Avery can annoy everyone.

  78. ford-I know Girardi’s had a rough year but he’s still a kid, lost his defensive partner in Tyutin who he had great chemistry with, and showed the last two years that he’s a pretty good player. He still has work to do. I think since his offense was very good last year, he was trying to do too much, plus he had to play with Redden and Redden’s pinching tendencies definitely threw poor Danny off.

    I agree that he’s probably a 4-6 realistically a 3rd pair guy on a Cup Contender, but A) he’s cheap B) homegrown C) young D)he’ll get better now that he’s separated from Redden E) didn’t really show getting burned that much in his first season or last year

    He’ll be fine. He’s the least of our worries as fans. If Sather keeps the ship on course and let’s the Del Zs/Sangs/Sauers/Kundrateks of the world develop at a steady rate, Girardi is gonna be an awesome veteran 28-year-old 3rd line pair helping to break in one of the two Italian DMen when the Rangers are really ready to contend.

  79. MikeA: the only thing I am concerned about is the situation where a player is ready and he is not called up. As far as I am concerned, the Rangers organization are very tentative.
    If Del Zotto is not up some time during the 2009-2010 season, I would say they are doing the same thing again…being cautious where caution is not needed.

  80. topcorner-I totally understand. This year they’ve handled it right. The only rookie who I think should have been given more time was Anisimov Granted he didn’t tear it up in his first appearance, but you can see all the talents in him. He looked like he would have been fine given 5 games to get the nerves out and speed up to par. It gets me mad watching Giroux play for Philly and AA still in HFD but it’s not that bad because he’s only 20 and should be on a mission this offseason.

    Otherwise Potter is borderline, Sangs needs to work on his defense, Sauer needed (and still needs to show) he can stay healthy and then should get a look, Paranteau needs to make the team out of camp because of his age/waivers, and Owens can be a good 4th liner but needs to show something in camp.

    I’m gonna be very interested to see how all of these guys do in camp, especially Del Z and Grachev. Usually the 2nd camp has been tough on Rangers prospects and the 3rd is the charm. With Del Z, he looked great in camp so let’s see if he continues. With Grachev, they said he needed to get faster and he was pissed about it (not at the Rangers but his own performance) so he worked hard and his skating is MUCH better as per Schoenfeld and The Hockey News. He was like the 3rd fastest skater in the OHL Skills Competition.

    In my dream world I’d like to see AA make the team as the 3rd line center and Korpi replace Sjo (I like Sjo a lot but it’s time to give some of these kids who are the future a shot) and any two of Sauer/Sangs/Potter make the team as D. I’d also like to see Jordan Owens who has worked very hard and totally bulked up and improved his overall game rotate on the 4th line with Orr.

  81. jerkins perkins(mike in ia) on

    mikea- good stuff mate. im likin where ya heads at. we def. need to get a few of these guys up here on the team next season. i dont follow the pack really, but i do know grachev has been a steal for us. i seen him play in the junior tourney this year hes damn good. artie did deserve a few more games. i also wanna know about sanguinetti. is he progressing at all in his development on d? its been almost a full season since i saw him play in preseason and youre sayin hes still got alot of improving to do? is he worse than redden? i mean is there a good chance this guy can make the team next year and maybe say good riddance redden? i hope sather willdo something with both players. either moveredden, demote him, or buy bhim out, or move rozy n bring up sauer or sangs. like u said we need a good cop/bad cop pairing on d so sangs is probably 1 too many goodcops right?

  82. In honor of St. Pat’s and since I just realized that TrueBlue is the name for frequent fliers on Jet Blue- I am retiring my old name- from here on out, TrueGreen.

  83. The Esteemed Doodie Machetto on

    From Spector’s Trade Rumors, (you gotta love this if you hate the Piles like I do):

    “TORONTO SUN: Steve Simmons recently reported agent Pat Brisson, who represents highly-touted Canadian prospect John Tavares, said his client will report to whichever teams selects him in this year’s upcoming entry draft. Tavares is expected to go first overall and the NY Islanders, Tampa Bay Lightning, Atlanta Thrashers, Colorado Avalanche and Phoenix Coyotes stand the best chance to win the draft lottery and the right to select the first overall pick. Brisson told Simmons if it were up to him he’d avoid “Tampa, Atlanta *and the Island* at all costs” but it’s not up to him.

    SPECTOR’S NOTE: Given the expectations that will be weighed upon Tavares’ shoulders it might be best if he went to a team where he wouldn’t face as much pressure to carry the offense in his rookie season, something he’ll be expected to do if he’s drafted as anticipated by the Islanders. Still, some rookies have thrived being thrust into those positions (Ilya Kovalchuk, Alexander Ovechkin) so it’s quite possible Tavares could emulate those greats. “

  84. If they waive deadden his contract comes off the cap. Then they let miss rosy go home to play like they did with kasper and thats another big contract gone.Then maybe capt excitment gets traded and we can bring in some real players ones with balls, fire, size and some nastiness.Good ol jimmy dolan would just have to eat the money like he did with the knicks and there mistakes!

  85. Vince, do you really think the chances of any of that happening are real, maybe 1 of 3 (possibly)…

  86. vogs
    March 16th, 2009 at 8:22 pm
    Personally I think Mara is a big body back there, but he is no threat on offense and has difficulty handling the puck cleanly. If Sanguetti can play or Del Zotto, I don’t resign Mara unless as a seventh “D”.

    I am not sure why anyone would even bring Del Zotto into a conversation like this !! He is not even in the AHL yet and at his size, he had better be lighting up the AHL before he’s called up. As for Sanguinetti….. I travel to Hartford for work a lot and try to get to Wolfpack games…. trust me, you would much rather have Mara. Not saying that Bobby S will never play in the NHL, but he plays scared and is not a very good skater, needs much work. And Mara is a pretty solid d-man…. problem is that you cant expect all of your d-men to be Brian Leetch. Just my opinion though !!

  87. LUCKY GREEN LIQUID on

    I am as Irish as a meatball parm is but I figure we could use some luck tonight vs. Montreal

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