The wait continues


It’s only Tuesday. Nothing we can do about that. The playoffs don’t start until Wednesday.

I’m just checking in, and I figured I’ll give you my picks and get you all angry with me and then I’ll go away and let you cool off. Actually, Jane is going to practice and she will be along with her picks at some point, too.

We’d love to hear yours.


Capitals over Rangers in six.
Bruins over Canadiens in five.
Devils over Hurricanes in seven.
Flyers over Penguins in seven.

Sharks over Ducks in six.
Red Wings over Blue Jackets in five.
Canucks over Blues in five.
Flames over Blackhawks in seven.

And, since you’re sure to ask: I still don’t believe in the Rangers’ top-line talent. Who is going to score big goals? Avery? Callahan? Dubinsky? Those guys are terrific playoff-type players, but the Rangers don’t have one guy the Capitals think they have to stop in this series. And if Chris Drury’s out, it’s even worse. The power play, well, you know. The Capitals will score goals. The Rangers’ penalty killing might give them a wash on the special teams, even with the dreadful PP. And Lundqvist is surely a better bet than Jose Theodore, who gives the Rangers’ offense some hope. Overall, though, I see the Rangers scoring one or two goals per game, and that won’t get it done in this series. And there are no more shootouts. One more prediction: The Rangers win Game 1 and get everybody even more excited. It happens a lot. Game 2 winners win about 70 percent of all series, though.


If you care, and surely you don’t except to root “against” a certain team with a 25 percent chance of winning the draft lottery, the ping pong balls get picked tonight at 8 p.m. Versus is supposed to show it, although they might have a bull ride or a deer-shooting contest going on, or some MMA guys beating each other bloody. will also broadcast it. (ps, the Isles have a 48 percent chance of getting the first pick, because the winner of the lottery can only move up four spots).

Hey, it’s hockey, as much as there is today.

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  1. BTW, Carp I sent you my playoff beard (before) picture. Make sure to get it up asap.

  2. Carp

    I have no problem with your pick — I happen to agree. But your analysis that the Rangers will struggle to score two goals per game — against a team that doesn’t lock down defensively in any real way, a team with that goalie, a team that loves to trade chances — is way, way off base.

  3. ^ Agreed. This is a totally different season/atmosphere. The Rangers are not going to be the same lazy team we saw during the regular season.

    All the players know this is what really counts.

    Zherdev will be ready for this series in not wanting his fellow countryman to blow him out of the water. The stage is set for him.

  4. I tend to agree with Dr. Ogrodnick. The Rangers average about 3 per game under Tortorella and everyone is going to be jacked up tomorrow night and the game will be wide open. They’ll score. It’s a matter of not letting the Caps blow your doors off and score 6 or 7 goals (it could happen). Lundqvist hasn’t been good this year against them at all.

    To me, the Rangers go as far as Hank takes them. If he can put up ridiculous numbers (like a GAA under 2.00), then the Rangers can do some damage here.

  5. BillyDeeWilliams on

    Carp, I won’t argue with you that this team doesn’t have top-line scoring talent…that’s been pretty apparent to me all season…but I really do think they’re gonna come away with more than 1 or 2 goals a game.

  6. Enough with “I’ll root for the Caps if they beat the Rangers.” F-the Caps. Hate the Caps. They’re the enemy. F-em. I can’t wait for tomorrow night.

  7. I’ll only handicap the East – ‘Canes in 5, Pens in 4, Bruins in 4, Rangers in 6. Some years the parity isn’t.
    If Caps’ ‘D’/Goaltending was above average, I’d be less confident for Rangers. But it ain’t. Hello Tom Poti.

  8. Dr. Ogrodnick on


    It’s not so much rooting for the caps as it is rooting for the lesser evil. I definitely prefer the Caps coming out of the east than I do Pitt, Philly, NJ, Boston, Carolina, or Montreal. Of course, that could all change after the 1st round.

  9. Rangers scored 4 on the Caps last time they met. All the games otherwise have been low scoring affairs. The caps only managed 2 real goals in the 3-1 win. To keep a team like them scoring that little, with the addition of our new guys, and Lundqvist back to form…this series is too close to call, and I would bet it goes to 7.

  10. Got a little upset about your pick until I saw Flyers over Pens in 7….that sure blows your credibility! :) The Rangers will win more playoff games than the Flyers in my opinion no matter whether they win or lose the series.

  11. “It happens a lot. Game 2 winners win about 70 percent of all series, though.”

    Right on. See rounds 3 and 4 in 1994.

    I have not seen ANYWHERE, anyone predict a sweep in the entire 1st round. Just an observation.

  12. it’s all about who’s hot…based on that:

    boston over montreal in 5
    caps over rangers in 7
    canes over devils in 5
    penguins over flyers in 6

    ducks over sharks in 7
    jackets over wings in 7
    canucks over blues in 6
    blackhawks over flames in 6

  13. I could really care less about the rest of the playoff teams at this point, its too early.

    ONLY Series I care about is ours, and F THE CAPS!

    Rangers win in 6

    Game 1 – NYR W – Away
    Game 2 – WSH L – Away
    Game 3 – NYR W – Home
    Game 4 – NYR W – Away
    Game 5 – WSH L – Home
    Game 6 – NYR W – Away

    11 Stand out players for this series in my guestimation:

    Cally – goals and guts
    Antropov – Big, fantastic hands, lots of goals
    Staal – steady play and shutdown man for Ovie
    Mara – solid and tough
    Morris – low shot on the PP plus toughness
    Dubi – heart, soul, and scoring touch coming back at the right time
    Zherdev – goals, goals, goals
    Sjoey – PK, quickness, SH Goals if there to be had
    Betts – PK, Heart
    Gomer – Set up man, super fast skating
    Naslund – man on a new mission. Guess he feels its time to play his ass off and show his worth
    Drury -if he plays game 1 & 2

    Carp whats the status of the playoff beard pics? You adding new ones as you get them?

  14. “but the Rangers don’t have one guy the Capitals think they have to stop in this series.”

    Have to disagree. Have you watched other teams all marking Gomez this season? He is the catalyst for the Rangers offense when left alone.

  15. Rangers 4 Caps 3
    Bruins 4 Habs 1
    Pens 4 Flyers 2
    Canes 4 devils 3
    Ducks 4 Sharks 3
    Hawks 4 Flames 2
    Canucks 4 Blues 1
    Jackets 4 Redwings 2!!!!!!!

  16. rangers in 5. upset of the year.

    everyone bet against the rangers versus the devils last year, and the rangers took it in 5.

  17. So Drury is out with a sprained neck I heard. He sprained it finally pulling his head out of his @ss in time for the playoffs.

  18. Rangers in 6
    Bruins in 5
    Pens in 6
    Devs in 7
    Sharks in 5
    Flames in 6
    Blue Jackets in 7
    Blues in 6

  19. Rangers over Capitals in 6
    Bruins over Montreal in 5
    Flyers over Penguins in 7
    Hurricanes over Devils in 6

    Sharks over Ducks in 7
    Flames over Hawks in 7
    Wings over Jackets in 5
    Canucks over Blues in 5

  20. Are teams really “marking” Gomez, or does he just tend to skate into 3 players and then they take the puck from him because he’s tiny? Who in the league is losing sleep over how to mark Gomez? Of course he’s a good player when he’s left alone — Colton Orr is a lot better when he’s left alone too.

  21. and the islanders with the first overall pick select victor hedman!

    and then move to KC…

  22. Rangers over Capitals in 6
    Bruins over Montreal in 5
    Penguins over Flyers in 6
    Hurricanes over Devils in 7

    Sharks over Ducks in 5
    Flames over Hawks in 6
    Wings over Jackets in 7
    Canucks over Blues in 4

    Buckle your chin strap fella’s. Playoffs begin tomorrow.

  23. It’s so true though. The Rangers plan is to stop Ovie, Backstrom, Semin, Green, and Laich has come on lately.

    They have way more skill on offense…

    The Caps game plan is not to let the Rangers touch the puck…

    Their best D is their offense. They have outshot teams all year.

  24. It pretty much comes down to if the Rangers want it bad enough. We have seen them rise to the occasion against teams in their conference especially at Home during the playoff stretch. The Rangers have a solid six on the D line (please no redden quips lol) and a great goalie. This is what playoff hockey comes down to. But the Rangers have to bring their A game. We have seen teams with less fire power than the Rangers go far into the playoffs. But the Rangers need to be committed to win every night. Plus, the Rangers at the Garden can beat anyone in their conference. i am that confident in their play at MSG.

    The Mouth

    Ranger Crisis #19

  25. I believe the Rangers win this series in convincing fashion. No one believes they will win, the expectations are lower. I believe the grip on the sticks will loosen a bit and the goals will come. I am usually pessimistic about our heroes, and I am usually very critical of those that think the Rangers are so good. But I think the Rangers are in a good spot in the first round.

    Rangers in 5

  26. Carp – I understand the byline on who will score for this team, it’s been the same all year and is just as valid now.

    However, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Callahan score some big goals. He and Staal are the only two players on the team whose careers appear on a significant uptrend. I also think because he’s not a big name, the Capitals won’t be focused on Callahan.

  27. Bruins over Habs in 6
    Caps over Rangers in 6 (hope i am wrong)
    Flyers over Pens in 6
    Canes over Devis in 6

    Sharks over Ducks in 7
    Wings over Jackets in 5
    Flames over Hawks in 7
    Cunucks over Blues in 6

  28. And this one will last a lifetime on


    In the past 14 years, #1 vs # 8 is 21-7
    #2 vs # 7 is 14-14

    I disagree with three of your picks:
    -Rangers over Washington as Theodore loses the series for Washington
    -Penguins over Flyers because Fleury is better than Biron and because Penguins have way too much firepower and are healthy at the right time
    -Blues over Canucks because not all the favorites always win and they are playing really well for a long period of time

    Carp, lets remember this so we can revisit after its done and one of us can give props to the other

  29. haha if the kid lights up a joint every now and then let him be…as much as i dont want him to play against our rangers i dont think he should be punished for that..

  30. One of the things the Rangers need is someone unexpected to come up and be one of the best players in the playoffs. One of the prime examples of this is Fernando Pisani from Edmonton who had 14 playoff goals in ’05-’06 when the Oilers made the finals. Here’s a guy who never even reached the 20-mark during the regular season but had a huge postseason. The Rangers need a startling performance like that from someone like Dubinsky, Callahan, Zherdev or Naslund. If they get that and of course goaltending, they can make a run. The point is that we can say all we want about how the Rangers “don’t have scoring” but that can certainly change in the post-season.

  31. The Caps are overrated. The have 2 guys, and they will pound the shit out of us. But enough with referencing irrelevant regualr season statistics about scoring. The Caps have 2 guys, and the rest of the team has size, but their goalie is poor. I don’t care how many goals they averaged in the regualr season. Theyr’e not going to score more than 3 against us in ANY GAME IN THIS SERIES.

  32. Carp,

    I hate to say this but your posts are becoming more and more painful to read by the day. Nothing but exaggerated negativity. the rangers will score 1 or 2 goals a game? they scored more than that on washington with RENNEY IN CHARGE MINUS AVERY ANTROPOV AND MORRIS. i mean have you watched any of the past 20 games under torts or are you just mailing in these articles and blog entries figuring whatever the team looked like before is the same team they are now? i’m a fan carp of your work for a while but either put some effort into this thing or pass it along to someone that follows the team daily like sam used too.

  33. Nothing personal Carp, but I hope you are as wrong with this prediction as you were with the Avery situation.

  34. From Zipay blog:

    Drury skates, expects to play

    No slacker, Mr. Drury
    After not skating fro four days, Chris Drury practiced today and said he expecetd to play in Game 1 on Wednesday, barring some unforseen circumstance.

  35. Boo Rick! BOOOOOOOOOO!

    I think that’s a lame analysis from a guy who’s been pretty spot on throughout the season since taking over for Sam.

    So, basically your reasoning for the Caps winning the series is the Rangers don’t have top line talent and the Caps do; which, really means, you think talent wins hockey games. Teams like the Devils prove year in and year out that you don’t need a big time first line to win playoff series, or even the Cup.

    I’d argue we may need a “top line” to beat a solid contender, but let’s call a spade a spade, the Caps have holes and they’re by no means the 2008 Wings.

    We’re a completely different team than we were 3 months ago. While we may not have a “top line” by NHL standards, we probably have the most well-balanced and solid 4 lines in the entire Eastern Conference. Our third line could be a second line and vice versa, which says a lot about our depth.

    I break the series down much differently:

    Coaching: Coaches with Cups konw what it takes to win. Bruce hasn’t won a playoff series, let alone a Cup. Clear advantage: NYR

    Defense: Not really up for debate here. While Rossival/Redden has struggled mightly all year, the Rangers back 6 are collectively as good as any group in the league. Advantage: NYR

    Goaltending: Theodore is, without question, the worst “starter” in the entire NHL. I don’t think another goalie has been pulled more than him. I should know, he killed my fantasy team. Advantage: NYR

    Offense: The Rangers have more depth. The Caps have more firepower. Advantage: WASH

    Special Teams: Netural. One of the best PP’s against the best PK equals a wash.

    Leadership: We have guys with cups, they don’t. Advantage: NYR

    I don’t know. Maybe I’m off my rock but after the Capitals top 5, they really fall significantly off from there. I mean, this team didn’t even make the playoffs 2 years ago, and barely got in last year and now all of a sudden they’re the 93 Penguins?

  36. kovy, you don’t see effort here? Do you want me to just be a fan and jump up and down and hope “our Rangers” win the Stanley Cup? Or do you want my analysis?
    Seems after the Carolina and Boston games everybody here was pretty negative. Excuse me for not doing a complete 180 based on a couple of games the last week of the season.
    Besides, shouldn’t you be worrying about the Canadiens and their captain whose effort was less than stellar that last crucial game?

  37. Rick, if anyone from the blog buys you two plane tickets, and tell you they are going to come help you pack, and then give you a lift to the airport, just run. Run as fast as you can :)

  38. “Defense: Not really up for debate here. While Rossival/Redden has struggled mightly all year, the Rangers back 6 are collectively as good as any group in the league. Advantage: NYR”

    Defensively, perhaps. But Mike Green has scored more goals this season than all 6 of ours over the last 2 COMBINED!!!

  39. Defensive goals are nice, but not exactly 1st priority in the playoffs.

    You guys need to get off Carp’s back. Its a legit analysis, I said Caps in 5, doesnt mean im not gonna bust my guts rooting for the rangers.

  40. matt r

    do you think smoking pot gives him an unfair advantage?

    the only things that can “help” players gets taken care of. how soon we forget theo fleurys “magnificent” season in NYC. the things that need to get addressed, do. and the players that dont follow the rules get in trouble for it. trust me.

    and rule #1 in life is DONT BE A RAT.

    snitches get stitches.

  41. Carp,
    I can see all the other picks but, seriously? Philly over Pens? Did I miss when they got a credible goaltender???

  42. Rangers in 6
    Bruins sweep
    Canes in 5
    Flyers in 7

    sharks in 6
    wings sweep
    blues in 6
    hawks in 5

  43. Talent doesn’t win the playoffs maybe but it sure helps… I am picking (and hoping I am right) the Rangers to win the series… Carp picked them to lose (and is hoping he is wrong) Can’t fault the man for looking at it from a talent first lens. And the truth is he isn’t wrong. Ovechkin changes games and sorry but Creative Scotty “turn the puck over’ Gomez doesn’t take charge of games the way Ovechkin does.

    Is it any surprise Carp is picking the Caps to beat the Rangers he has, while still supporting as best he can, been pointing out that the team just doesn’t have superstar potential except maybe Hank and possibly Staal in the future… and that isn’t enough because you need to score goals wot win games not just stop the other guys.

    Fact is we need our players to seriously step up. I hope they have enough left in the tank but realistically there is a good chance they don’t. They haven’t put together a solid effort for a week recently and that what is needed. They have two good games and tow bad games… that won’t cut it.

    So hopefully the team pulls together and manages to become better than its parts…

  44. No Country For Old Rangers on

    I think the Rangers will win the series in convincing fashion.

    Goaltending and experience over top line talent!

    here goes…

    BOS 4-0
    NYR 4-1
    PHI 4-2
    CAR 4-1

    SJ 4-2
    DET 4-0
    STL 4-2 (upset special)
    CGY 4-3

    is it wednesday yet?

  45. Lousy predictions, you didn’t even pick one upset. Whoever has the most points wins the series… Flyers are going down in 5 or 6. I also think Montreal is going to make it a close series. I wouldn’t sleep on those Blackhawks either.

  46. “Do you want me to just be a fan and jump up and down and hope ‘our Rangers’ win the Stanley Cup? Or do you want my analysis?”

    Carp: No one wants you to be a fan. But the “analysis” you offered in this case was lacking and baseless. Make an argument that the Rangers will struggle to score 1.5 goals a game, fine, knock yourself out. But back it up with something that suggests you’ve watched tape of the games these team have played this season.

  47. I think the Rangers have more than a chance to beat the Capitals.

    If this were a first round matchup against the Bruins, there would be no debate, but its the Caps with their horrible defense and goaltending. The Caps have given up 20 goals in their last 4 games, so I’m thinking even the Rangers can take advantage of this.

    The Rangers stand more than just a chance,I’m stating Rangers in 6

  48. Here is a fun prediction

    Bruins over Habs – Laraque over Thorton and Lucic
    Caps over Rangers – Orr over Brashear
    Flyers over Pens – Goddard over Asham
    Canes over Devis – Gleason over Clarkson

    Sharks over Ducks – Parros over Shelley (They have fought 3 times this year)
    Wings over Jackets – Boll over Lilja
    Flames over Hawks – Prust over Eager
    Cunucks over Blues – Hordichuk over Crombreen

  49. Bruins over Canadiens in 5
    Rangers over Caps in 6 (only if the rangers win either game 1 or 2, otherwise it caps in 7, we will win all home games)
    Canes over Devils in 7
    Pitt over Phili in 7?? (really tough one)

    Sharks over Ducks in 5
    Wings over Columbus in 5
    Canucks over St Loius in 7
    Blackhawks over Flames in 6

  50. A Guy Who Likes The Rangers on

    New poster here, consistent reader though.

    It will be a fun series, and to tell you the truth I have more confidence in this series than I had with pittsburgh last year. I had good confidence with Pittsburgh too. To me it all comes down to goaltending, if Hank is SuperHank no reason we shouldn’t win. Remember the Callahan explosion we saw last year in the playoffs? I honestly think he is the difference maker (Avery with the assist)

    I rewatched the “World’s Longest Shootout” which resulted in the “World’s Ugliest Player” scoring the “World’s Most Unpredicted Goal.” Hearing JD announce again is great, watching that shootout again is great. Combine the Shanny fight and it shows we have had some good memories with these guys, but it is time to make some more. Knowing Nylander is a cap should be motivation enough.

  51. No Country For Old Rangers on

    Look, if Renney’s Rangers battled this Capitals team hard and played tight 1 goal games and held ovechkin to 5 points in 5 games (including a 3 point game, so he held was scoreless in 2) then I feel very confident that Tortorella’s Rangers will give them more of a battle and may even (gasp!) dominate

  52. “marking” is NOT a hockey term. get with it. in hockey, it is called “covering your man”

  53. I gotta say I think we have a decent chance in this series. like no country just posted, this team under renney lost a few close, one goal games to the caps. if the rangers can put up better numbers with torts at the helm, and lundqvist stays hot, they can definitely steal this series.

  54. Carp,

    judging by your less than professional response (borderline childish really), you sound like nothing more than one of those fans that enjoys complaining about their team more than actually cheering them on. You think what your putting out there daily is analysis? please put your ego away for five mins. I’ve seen some of your best work and this is far from it. You cried daily about avery and all he’s done is come in here and do exactly what he did for 2 years before he left. why you thought he’d be anything but a big help for this team is beyond me. Now you come out and your “analysis” is that the rangers won’t score more than 1 or 2 goals a game because they don’t have any bigtime players. Well im not quite sure what your “analysis” is based on because if your basing it on past meetings with washington you’d know that we scored plenty. If you are basing it on the last 20 or so games under torts which include 3 new guys avery, antropov, and morris, as well as a break out ryan callahan, you’d know that this team has scored pretty consistently since the change. You are mailing this whole blog in. Stop acting like you are doing the readers a favor by coming on here and posting a whiny rant once a day. there are plenty of younger CHEAPER writers out there that would LOVE this job. its a privilege to do what you do and get paid for it. dont’ forget that.

  55. OK, Here is something you guys have to consider… The Caps Defense all year long was more concerned with scoring goals, than they were stopping them. JT took the brunt of their Pirating goals in the chin too many times. When the pressure is on, their defense will collapse for the 2nd and 3rd games. Only thing that leaves to be questioned is, will the Rangers capitalize on the caps… You are an underrated team, which makes you dangerous. I’m willing to bet that Alex O, and Alex “The UFC Champion” Semin have wagers on who scores more goals. Punch them in the face once and they will be discombobulated. Good Luck, cause I wanna see you guys come to The Rock so we can get a chance at revenge!!!

  56. Riguere, all four games, by the way, were under Renney, without Antropov, Avery, Morris.

    What happened in those four games is meaningless.

    I saw half a season in which this team struggled to score goals, including the last two weeks of the season — at Carolina (2) against Montreal (3), at Boston (0), against Philly at home (2). It gets tighter in the playoffs. This isn’t my first year. That’s my opinion.

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