We’re back!


Sorry for the technical difficulties. I’m sure you guys had to find something to do with the time away from the blog … like work or something.

Anyway, I’m en route to New Orleans and I’ll check in tonight or tomorrow morning.

Before I forget, Congratulations!!! to the inaugural Paul Mara Rangers Report Playoff Beard Extravaganza Contest (etc.) winner and runners-up.

Contestant #4: you win the free beard trim at Sal’s Hair Station in White Plains. I don’t know if he does wool, though. You might have to work that out with him.

I need the following contestants (below) to please e-mail me their mailing addresses and e-mail addresses in case we can dig up some other prizes. Send you addresses to: rcarpini@lohud.com

Here are the official top results:

Contestant 4, 1544, 28%
Mike G., 1165, 21%
Noah, 796, 14%
Contestant 20, 457, 8%
BrooklynDomi,  357, 6%
Sally, 309, 6%

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  1. Yea thats brutal I agree with stubby, you could put that guys picture up and all but he shoudlnt even been able to get votes without a real beard, that sh!ts wizeeeeeakkkkkkk

  2. Yikes Rick I started to panic LOL I have been reading more than posting these days. Its just been so busy at work…

  3. @ Staal Mart

    RR didn’t pick the winner, but he picked the contestants.

    His attempt at picking a snarky contestant like #4 was stupid.

    like rob said “that sh!ts wizeeeeeakkkkkkk”

  4. Unemployed Steve on

    The Rangers lose in the first round, still unemployed, entered the contest and did not cheat on the vote and I couldn’t muster up even a last place prize…wow talk about your bad year…lol.

    Congrats to all you winners!

  5. A guy with a fake, wool beard wins the beard contest… sounds like a contest only Glen Sather could run.

  6. Thank God the blog is back. I sat at my desk waiting, I refuse to work until my blog is back. Now I refuse to work BECAUSE the blog is back !
    I missed you guys & gals.
    Way to go Sally !!!

  7. No Country For Old Rangers on

    I bet Crosby could grow a nicer beard than contestant 4 who “won” the beard contest.

    i heard contestant 4 voted for bush

  8. No Country For Old Rangers on

    I hope Mara’s back, judging by his comments on breakup day, he seemed to really want to play here.

    Interesting that “Bring Back Bush” had to create a new name to make that comment and is obviously embarrassed to used his/her real name.

    I’ll admit that Bush was unintentionally the funniest president ever but I am pretty glad that he is gone. What’s next for old Bush anyway? Become used car dealership spokesman in Texas? Fall off the wagon? Relapse into cocaine with Redden? Choke on another pretzel?

  9. Staal Wart on

    Haha No Country,
    this is not a political site but
    That was me. I voted for Bush 2x but I didn’t vote for contestant 4.
    I didn’t vote for Obama, his policies are more histerical than any “bushism”.
    Obama has done more to harm this country in his first 100 days than any other president in history!
    oh and Honk if your paying my mortgage!

  10. “I hope guys are not satisfied, going home losing Game 7 (to the Capitals),” stated Drury, the team’s captain. “There is a lot more to it, and a lot more out there.”


    Hey Chris, wanna explain?!?! And don’t forget to mention how nap time was and how the clutchmobile is doing!!!

  11. Staal Wart on

    Oh and whats the difference if I change my name. even as Staal Wart you have no idea who I am.

  12. Staal Wart on

    Drury is loving life right now…he’s rich and is probably surfing and playing golf…its tough being Captain…

  13. ZzZz 13 ZzZz once Ruled!! says Greg L. on

    dam dam dam , i was at 3 percent,,just wasn’t good enough , booooooooooooooo Rangers lose now I lose , booooooooooo!!!!!

  14. Ever wondered what happens when Hallmark writers are having a bad day……..

    My tire was thumping.
    I thought it was flat
    When I looked at the tire…
    I noticed your cat.

    Heard your wife left you,
    How upset you must be.
    But don’t fret about it…
    She moved in with me.

    Looking back over the years
    that we’ve been together,
    I can’t help but wonder…
    ‘What the hell was I thinking?’

    Congratulations on your wedding day!
    Too bad no one likes your husband.

    How could two people as beautiful as you
    Have such an ugly baby?

    I must admit, you brought Religion into my life.
    I never believed in Hell until I met you.

    Happy Birthday, Uncle Dad!
    (Available only in Tennessee , Kentucky & West Virginia )

    When we were together,
    you always said you’d die for me.
    Now that we’ve broken up,
    I think it’s time you kept your promise.

    We have been friends for a very long time ..
    let’s say we stop?

    I’m so miserable without you
    it’s almost like you’re here.

    Congratulations on your new bundle of joy.
    Did you ever find out who the father was?

    Your friends and I wanted to do
    something special for your birthday.
    So we’re having you put to sleep.

    So your daughter’s a hooker,
    and it spoiled your day.
    Look at the bright side,
    it’s really good pay

  15. Hey kids! What’s happening? As soon as I leave the hell breaks loose!! Half of the comments are gone from the previous post and this guy what’s his beard… Contestant #4 claims the victory over obvious winner Sally! What’s next? The Bush for third term or another Summer of ’77? Let’s get it together kids!

    Ohhh, sweet Caroline, good times never seem so good!

  16. Tony from Az
    “Happy Birthday, Uncle Dad!
    (Available only in Tennessee , Kentucky & West Virginia ) ”

    Also available in New Jersey if you are a goalie. Uncle Daddy!

  17. ZzZz 13 ZzZz once Ruled!! says Greg L. on

    what a day , Carp chooses the top 6 beards and I think I was 7th!!!! Missed it by that much( in an inspector gajet voice)…TO TOP IT ALL OFF , I’t’s f****ng SNOWING!!!???

    BOOOOOO , Carp picks the top 6 and I was 7th and snow …sigh~~~

  18. Drury's Agent (aka JamesG) on

    You think that Halmark stuff is talking about a bad day? Try being me. I had to postpone my trip to Venice til this stupid hand injury thing is cleared up.

  19. Gomez's Agent on

    Drury’s Agent.

    You think you have it rough. Your client had an injury, mine just flat out sucks.

  20. Thank you for your support! (Kisses babies)

    Can’t wait til the 2nd Annual Paul Mara Playoff Beard Contest!

  21. condy
    something other than politics or religion will do just fine

    how about we talk about how the penguins are getting all the calls in the series vs washington.

  22. colin

    r u surprised? Buttman is still trying to convince us that Cindy is the best player in the League and somehow deserves special treatment. When referees are taken over important games like these it really makes you feel as if the games are rigged. This is why the NHL is a minor sport in this country.

  23. The officiating is the continuation of Bettman’s own personal puppet show that is the “NEW NHL.” See basically how it works is, come playoff time, when all the times that deserve it make it in, Bettman now has free hockey/revenue. His player’s no longer make a per-game salary like the regular season (while they do get some sort of compensation I am sure) and all the tickets sold is revenue they couldn’t account for at the start of the season so it’s essentially bonus money.

    Bettman then has to make sure the teams that draw the most ratings stay in as long as possible. The only way he can control that is by controlling the referees. Pitt. is getting all the calls NOW because they are being out played and down so Bettman needs some help to assure it goes longer.

    Bettman sucks.

  24. im not surprised i just wanted to switch topics

    and boom goes the dynamite

    but yeah it is a little unfair.

    i think i should have asked what everyone is thinking with the bruin series. cant even believe its 2-1 carolina.

  25. Drury's Agent (aka JamesG) on

    I despise the Bruins because of a couple of moronic fans they have..and Marc Savard…I’m glad Carolina is managing thus far.

  26. go canes and ducks. i want to see the worst ratings ever on nbc to stick it to bettman. maybe a canes canucks final would be brutal in the usa for ratings.

    also i hope the caps kill the pens.

    i hate u cindy

  27. i am not surprised that Carolina is up in that series. Bruins is a young team… Carolina been there-done that.

  28. I am laying it out on the line right now…I will win the beard contest next year.

    “We will win tonight.”

  29. While blowing a 3-1 series lead hurts no matter what, I think the better team clearly won the series. While I was a bit unsure of Varlamov’s ability in the Rangers series (he really wasn’t tested that much), he’s certainly stepped up in the Pens series. And while being eliminated by Ovie and the Caps hurts, it doesn’t hurt as much as it did last year when Cindy and the Pens did the honors. Let’s just hope that the Caps dump the Pens, because there is no one I despise more in the NHL (except for Gary Bettman of course!) than Crosby.

    Yes, a goal scorer and stud d-man/pp qb are musts, but what’s the likelihood of that happening? The Rangers have something like $40 million committed to 9 players for next year, so there’s not much room to fill those needs and still fill out a roster. Plus, they can’t afford to spend the money on a stud d-man/pp qb because they already spent it on Redden! Naslund retiring was a huge plus. Let’s just hope Sather (moron) uses the cap space wisely and doesn’t go screw it up by giving Gaborik $9 mil a year for 10 years since that gimp can’t stay healthy. Sure the Rangers will go after Hossa, but if you were him, wouldn’t you rather stay in Detroit and play with the likes of Zetterberg, Datsyuk, Franzen and Lidstrom? Besides, Sather still has to address Callahan and Dubinsky this offseason (restricted FAs) and Staal next year. If Slats isn’t smart (and we know he isn’t!), he’ll have minimal room to accommodate these players and even worse, some SMART GM may come along with a massive offer sheet that would preclude them from matching. Sather needs to smarten up or step away (then again maybe those are the same option). The $4 million of free cap space from Naslund retiring is a blessing. It was also pretty classy of Naslund to do what he did. If I were him, I would have taken the buyout. Sather needs to learn a lesson from Naslund.

    The shame in all of this is that now as I watch the remaining teams in the playoffs, I realize so much more how flawed the Rangers system is. Teams like Detroit, Washington, and yes, even Pittsburgh, were built the right way – via smart drafting and complimenting via good trades that didn’t give away the future and selective free agency (for the record, I think Detroit has the best front office in the NHL – they’re a friggin Swedish all-star team! Half their team will be donning the Tre Kronor in the Vancouver Olympics next year) . Sure the Rangers have had their successes (Lundqvist in the 7th round, Callahan, Staal and Dubinsky), but those I think were lucky hits rather than shrewd drafting. I can’t stress that point enough – the Rangers draft Jessiman in the first round in 2003 and pass on the likes of Getzlaf and Parise. Then they draft Korpikoski (still could be serviceable) and Montoya in 2004, and pass on Mike Green. The Rangers were so bad for so long (9 straight years of no playoffs and being terrible – they should have an all-star line up by now like Washington and Pittsburgh have after being terrible for so long). Part of me wishes the Rangers blow up the team. Buyout Redden, Gomez and take the hit now, suck for awhile, get draft picks and reload. By then, the young core should be fully developed, and Lundqvist should really be hitting his prime as most goalies are at the peak of their game by their late 20s.

    Well, enough ranting for now. I have the entire summer to do that! By the way, do you think Naslund could give the Rangers one more gift by persuading Redden to retire?

  30. Everyone talks about DUMPING this guy and his salary, or dumping that guy and his salary.. its highly unlikely.. and if it does, then what? Spend and overpay on ANOTHER free agent that we dont know how they will do in NY.. We have to live with what we have and have faith.. Redden is not going to be the QB we signed him to be, but we have a lot of young depth at that position and unlimited potential.. with Gomez and Drury we just have to hope they come back with stronger years.. its not IMPOSSIBLE that they could play better next year.. everyone wants to throw guys out the window so quickly all the time, guys have bad years, they r human beings.. i was saying a week ago we have to get rid of zherdev bc of how disgusted i was with his playoff performance, but thats in the heat of the moment.. i rather have antropov than him, but i really dont know if i want to just throw zherdev away after one year with the team, under a defensive system for most of the year.. maybe he can flourish under a full year of torts.. nobody knows what can happen.. i cant argue with people bashing him for his play, but we did giv up tyutin for this guy and like someone mentioned it woudl be a shame to see him walk and then go to another team and score 30-40 goals.. at the right price we shoudl probably give this guy another year or two, i jsut dont know how everyone is going to fit and i really would liek to see antropov back bc of that size and potential.. but i doubt seeing both of them back, we can only wait and see waht happens.. my main point is, things can get better even if there are not alot of new free agent signing pickups.. the young guys get a year older, and maybe drury and gomez come back with better years, its not like they r 40 year olds out there that are completely done in their careers..

  31. I agree with almost everything you said CCCP, i just dont agree with buying out all those guys and taking the hit now.. and i dont think the front office is willing to do that either, just have to stick to our guns and hope things turn around… I think your right on with hossa except i dont think sather will even go after him if he has any brains, bc its a waste of time, he probably had an agreement with them last year for just one year bc of cap space, they will prob sign him long term now, and if they dont, he will go to one of the other top contenders at the cup
    Gaborik i dont think makes sense for us either bc he will b asking for too much with that chance of injury, so like im saying i just dont know who this sniper is that we are going to sign, i think we might have to wait, or hope somebody we already have can turn into that guy, or have 3-4 guys score 30+ goals(duby, cali, drury, antro/zherdev) and have other guys chip in with 15-20(anisimov, gomez, avery) I think avery coudl even get 25+ in a full year playing effectively.. i dont know i know everyone is always so pessimistic but i hav faith things can turn around offensively, especially under torts for full year

  32. Rob M

    I only said that part of me wishes for the team blow-out. I know it is unrealistic and we have to hope as you mentioned that Gomez and Drury come back with stronger years. I would give Z another year… if he slacks off again…let him go… Antro is a valuable forward and must be kept no matter what. Redden is a f’ing liability… no matter how much you hope for him to get better he just won’t. Let’s just wait and see what our prodigy of a manager is got up his sleeve this summer.

  33. mike in ia on

    dude wtf is up with jussi jokinen? this guy is freakin possessed!! just scored again. canes up 2-1 in 3rd

  34. yea another great move by Tampa Bay Lightning to waive him.. they got im pretty sure draft picks Halpern and Jokinen for Richards and Jokinen and Halpern are both gone

  35. mike in ia on

    anyone see ovechkins knee on knee hit that injured gonchar? he definitely did that knowing full well the pens are gonna suffer on the pp without him. varlaaaaaaaamov and hiller had their nice little runs. hiller i think is way better. had to make more saves, against better teams. varlamov has another dud like he had tonight, ya gotta wonder if threeormore goes back in. its gonna be very interesting if carolina wins their series. i know the canes are playing awesome hockey right now, and it would make an awesome series against the caps if they both advance

  36. mike in ia on

    rob m- im pretty sure they got him off waivers this season. tampa traded johan holmqvist and richards for halpern and mike smith

  37. mike in ia on

    man carolina is not this good!! boston is just flat out horrible right now. 3-1 now. holy crap samsonov scores. sick deke and great pass from who else, jokinen

  38. mike in ia on

    damn we couldve had the bruins!!!!! damnit rangers why do you have to suck!!!??

  39. ohh baby eric staal is the man!! now marc, you take some lessons from your older bro on learning some offense!!!! damn bostons choking bigtime

  40. No Country For Old Rangers on

    Staal Wart-

    That is the beauty of loving the Rangers. It is the “great uniter” bringing together radical liberals, right wing extremists, and everyody in between.

    Between the Rangers and Obama, I hope the next couple years arent too painful for ya!

  41. CCCP
    great post at 7:02. i agree with everything on there. i havent missed one minute of any game since we have been eliminated and must say the rangers arent in the same league as teams like pitt and wash. throw carolina in there if eric staal continues his dominance.

  42. Ovechkin is a scumbag. He took Gonchar out, plain and simple. No respect for the game.

  43. this contest was a sham just like the nhl playoffs. It will be 100% proof that its rigged when pens caps goes 7 games ugh.

    i voted for sally. i stand behind my vote

  44. Every year some random guy does well in the playoffs who was cast away and this year is Jussi Jokinnen’s turn. He’s not a bad player, Tampa was a mess this year.

    Will everyone stop with all this gloom and doom and Rangers/Obama bashing. Go to a Donkey vs. Elephant CNN page or something.

  45. CCCP-I feel your pain
    Rob M-all good points
    Mike in IA- I always felt that a team that gets hot 2 weeks before the playoffs has a chance. Carolina and Pitt were on fire at the end of the season and I think you’ll see them play in the semi’s.

    Will the NHL treat AO like Avery after that dirty hit??? Doubtful.

  46. ZzZz 13 ZzZz once Ruled!! says Greg L. on

    I honestly feel that the Ranger were the better team , we out played them in that GAME 7 AND we earned our goal and thier goal was flukky CCCP . We were the better team untill old man Federov sunk it for us. We were up 3 -1 and i’d say we were the better team. It’s over and untill the fans of new york start embrasing our players more and stop expecting so much and singling out players to be the goat.

  47. so, are we going to see Ovechkins suspension? That hit was dirty. Very dirty. I get a feeling that Caps team is nothing more but bunch of goon teenagers running wild. They knew that our strongest point was PK and took out Betts… same story here… Gonchar is their key guy on PP… gone. Not that Penguins dont have other people to run the PP or score at even strength… but I’m sure you guys get what im saying…Its fcked up.


    We were the better team until game 5.

  48. Wtf? How did a guy who didn’t even grow a beard win the contest? Stupid….he probably just voted for himself over and over again…cuz who the hell on here actually voted for that stupidity?

  49. Staal Wart on

    No problem Old Country…
    I laugh at the Pres, I laugh at my Rangers, then I cry about the Rangers.
    Thankfully the pres will be gone in 4, Americans are too smart to get dooped 2x, or are they?
    The Rangers in 4 will have Redden “and others” gone…so I just keep the chin up.
    I look on the bright side…Sather is getting old, how much longer can he honestly do this. All those cigars have to take there toll at some point right?

  50. That Ovechkin hit is bull. “When I hit, I hit clean.” Yeah, just with your skates 6 inches off the ice and your arms up every single time, but no it’s clean.

    btw the NHL.com headline was that Ovechkin feels bad about it. What a joke this league is.

  51. Speaking of Staal, am I the only one who’s no impressed with the one in Pittsburgh? I mean, besides his size, I fail to see what is so special about him. He had a great rookie season and has been regressing ever since. Would you trade a Callahan or Dubinsky for him?

  52. JBytes
    May 9th, 2009 at 11:02 am
    Speaking of Staal, am I the only one who’s no impressed with the one in Pittsburgh? I mean, besides his size, I fail to see what is so special about him. He had a great rookie season and has been regressing ever since. Would you trade a Callahan or Dubinsky for him?


    i would trade Sjo for him. :)

  53. Ovechkins reputation just took a huge nose dive down the craper…

    Someone posted a poll the other day… dirtiest players in NHL… Ovechkin should have made that list…

    i dont even know how Avery even got on that list… again… this is WHY the NHL is a minor sport in US.

    Favoritism, inconsistency, dumb rules (see skate in crease) stigmatizing certain players for a complete not hockey related bullsh*t… and the list goes on and on.

    Look at the MLB NFL NBA… these leagues are filled with crime and drugs… and YET the NHL is still a joke.

  54. watch the replay @ 1:10

    his right leg. never moves “off track”

    Many of his big hits are in that exact spot. malkin, chelios, havlat, corvo, phanneuf, colin white. For it to be a dirty knee on knee his leg would need to move off course and it never does.

  55. colin

    Ovechkins leg was way out and he didn’t make an effort to try to avoid the knee on knee… also if you watch carefully you can see that right before the contact Ovechkin makes a little trust forward as if he is trying to get the knee of Gonchar…I like AO and i think his upbeat attitude and world class skills is great for NHL… but, that was a dirty play… i think AO even admitted that himself.

  56. All the criticism of Ovechkin’s hits (taking extra strides, jumping, late) are all valid but that hit on Gonchar wasn’t dirty at all.

    Gonchar’s leg was the one that was way out as he tried to avoid the hit – he left himself exposed and unfortunately got hit in a very vulnerable spot. Gonchar had his head down, was extended and tried to jump out of the way but got clipped.

    To be honest, I don’t even know why Ovechkin got the tripping penalty as Gonchar didn’t have the puck and Ovechkin was in the process of making the play on the boards when they collided.

  57. i dont think he tried to move out of the way thats for sure. but if you dont thrust foward like that w/ your shoulder you end up doin flips like his hit on malkin.

    the only reason im even siding with him is cause thats my favorite type of hit since the hip check died. if i couldnt do that every weekend when i played hockey, id play soccer.

    if our staal knows AO plays like that the whole league should know. staal for how many times hes been on the ice against AO he has only had his bell rung once.

    i dont think it was as dirty as it could have been. i still am sticking with my leg theory. if he would have moved his right leg off track it would have been a 5min major, + 10 and a game and tonight as well.

    i do see what your saying w/ his stance. his left leg is a little far out but i think thats more cause of where the puck ended up.

    looking @ it again gonchar reminds me of what naslund did before he got hit by gaborick (spelling?) he got caught reaching and tried to move.

  58. jbytes- jordan is overshadowed by malkin and crosby. he gets 3rd line minutes with pk time. lets put dubinsky or cally on the 3rd line and see how many points they put up. actually, until torts got here, cally only had 13 goals. dubinsky had 8. its when they got more icetime is when they started being more of a difference and scoring more. im not sure who staal played with all year but im sure theyre not offensive wizards. at this point, staal seems to be stagnant on that team. and no, i wouldnt trade dubinsky or cally for him at this point, especially not cally. but thats only because you can see that torts really sees alot of good things for these kids. they were basically leading the way against the caps in the series. maybe not scoring all that much, but they were continually the best on the ice. but ya gotta think pitts isnt gonna be able to hold onto all these guys, and they need wingers, so kunitz will probably get signed, if hes a ufa, guerin will probably retire, or sign a 1 yr deal. they need wingers and they might wanna move staal. now we dont need centers, but i think another team will take staal, and try to get him top minuteson the 2nd line and since hes already good in the defensive side of his game, hed have an oppurtunity to play with some better wingers and become better offensively.

  59. The Mouth Your comment is awaiting moderation.

    Didi i go too link happy ? If I did I wont post links to my site

  60. HAHAHAAH. YOU GUYS like Cindy Crosby-Sanchez’s playoff mustache? He looks like a 12 yr old mexican.

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