Leaves await

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Can you say “Trap game?”

If there ever was one, this is it: Rangers on a six-game winning streak at the Maple Leaves on an 0-5-1 start. Rangers on a roll, but coming off a poor effort. Rangers against a team they easily beat earlier in the week.

Plus, the Rangers already showed us how they get when it looks too easy — in the second period of that game against the Maple Leaves at MSG. John Tortorella thought maybe it was coming too easily. And if you follow hockey, you know that happens to every team, no matter how great or how bad. When the goals come easily, players tend to relax. They tend to take shortcuts. They tend to try risky, fancy passes instead of sticking with what got them there.

That’s what the Rangers did in that second period.

Then they buckled down. But their game against L.A. Wednesday wasn’t good, either, though it was another victory.

This game tonight at Air Canada Centre will be a test, for sure. The Leaves will play better. They will probably play with even more snarl. They will be in the goal crease. There will be some fights (Orr-Brashear II?) Plus, those Hockey Night games on Saturdays in Canada are always difficult (some think the officials call it differently).

Anyway, here it is. A trap game. A game the good teams find a way to win.

Here are tonight’s pregame notes.

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150 Comments

  1. they win THIS game, they truly are gonna be for real. Leaves are gonna throw everything at them, and they better be prepared, especially to stand up for Hank and annihilate whoever runs him tonight!!

  2. I really want them to win this game. It would be awesome to have a seven game winning streak. When was the last time that happened ??

    And to think this team would even have a four game winning streak in October. Amazing.

    Keep the streak alive, as well as Gabby’s point streak !!

  3. On a more hockey-related note, I definitely agree with you, Carp. The Rangers played poorly against the Kings and Henrik brought us a win. The Leaves are going to get hungrier and hungrier with every loss, and I would expect even more so after the embarrassing 7-2 loss we handed to them last time. Tonight, in front of a home audience, Hockey Night in Canada, they are going to want this win in an awful way.

    Playing the way they did in periods two and three against LA will not fare the Rangers well tonight. They have to step it up and really bring the intensity and level of commitment they did in prior games.

    We all know they’re MORE than capable of doing it, and I don’t think Torts is going to go lightly on them. I think we can expect a high level of intensity from both teams, a lot of crashing the net, a lot of hits, and I don’t think it would be unwise to bet on a Brash-Orr rematch. And by the way, can we PLEASE start protecting Hank? The last few games have been absurd, we can’t let teams get away with that kind of carp. It’s embarrassing. With all that energy, it should be a great game to watch, for sure!

    LET’S GO RANGERS!

  4. great write up and so true

    hagman and stajan are going to be in the lineup. jamal mayers (first run on hank) is scratched. and Joey MacDonald will be in net. (toskla out 1-2 weeks, gustavsson on IR). they cant sit back and get lazy. if they play their game they will win. get shots on net.

  5. Anybody see Paul Gaustad beat the snot out of Tom Jackman for running Ryan Miller last night? He just grabbed him, got his jersey up over his face and started drilling him with uppercuts. Brutal. But the Sabres saw last season just how valuable Miller was to their team and don’t want anybody taking liberties. Sound familiar? I’d be perfectly OK with losing Dubi, Avery, Brash, Cally, Boyle, Redden for 5 minutes and lose a power play to stop people from running Hank. That’s a good penalty to take.

  6. Ohhhh yeaaaah, i forgot aboot that. Actually the Sabs were pretty good last season, but Blowmez ruined their season. I totally forgot. I was thinking aboot the year before, mixed with the beginning of last year.

    That’s how it should be. It’s early in the yea,r you can afford to lose a game or two for sticking up for your goalie.

    It’s sad. If anybody does it tonight, careers should be in jeopardy. Hank, and Gabby are everything to this team. Stick up for them !

  7. 05-06 ??? Geez, I barely remember that.

    Speaking of 05-06, i had a dream last night that Jagr returned to the Rangers, and midway through the 2nd period, he left, and announced his retirement, and signed a one year deal with the Vikings football team. So random.

  8. Good Hockey Morning to everyone!!!!

    Torts said they looked and were tired and I am SURE they all know they Leafs are going to throw everything AND the kitchen sink at them. I posted a link from the NY Post on the last thread and it was Torts saying he KNOWS LQ is getting run.

    http://www.nypost.com/p/sports/rangers/rangers_maple_leafs_gear_for_chippy_zmzOlFFG0GJ7og3gsvFe9O

    This is the EXACT reason why they let Orr walk & signed Brashear. I swear if he doesnt stick up for LQ if they run him in this game Torts should sit him for 5 games and play Voros. Right now it looks he has more heart that Brashear does. Big deal he fought Orr – we all knew it was going to happen. Its what happens when your franchise goalies season is on the line from dirty plays.

  9. Joe, it absolutely is a good penalty to take … but you have to do it right then and there. Or else you run their goalie. It does no good for Brashear to fight Orr because somebody else ran Lundqvist. That’s just dumb. And Jason Blake isn’t going to fight Brashear ever.

  10. Grammar Police on

    Why insist on using “Leaves” instead of “Leafs”? It hurts my brain to read it and you never see an AP story with “Leaves”.

    It’s a proper noun, thus it deserves an “s” to pluralize it. If you were having a dinner party with Mr. & Mrs Wolf, you would never say the “Wolves” are coming to dinner. It would be “Wolfs”.

    You also don’t change “Flyers” to the grammatically correct “Fliers” do you?

  11. TR

    I dont know if you caught my reply a few threads back. Sounds like a plan… I’ll probably have the gf in tow though. She’s not a big hockey fan ( Im suprised she IS Ukrainian LOL ) but she puts up with it because of me.

    Anyone ever see that commercial with the couple playing out their fantasy? The gf/wife is dressed up in a French maid costume & he comes out in goalie equipment – that’s totally us. But I prefer to be a forward ;)
    HAHAHAHAHAH

  12. RIck

    But it shouldnt stop Brash from sending Blake through the stands with a nice solid body check to send a message eh?

  13. MacDonald played good hockey against the Rangers last year. I think he beat them on election night so he’s no slouch. They’ve had two days off so the energy should be there.

    Players to watch-Avery; he loves playing in Ontario and scoring against the Leafs.

    Lisin-I think he’ll play but now he’s on the 4th line so he’ll be trying to get his minutes back.

  14. MikeA

    I think Kotalik & Lisin could play anywhere on the team – they are BOTH really talented and has anyone noticed that Lisin is much better defensively?

  15. Carp, agreed 100%. Which is why I never quite understood the rational of having a goon on your team who never plays. What would be the odds of Brash being on the ice the moment someone runs Hank? about 8/60, since 8 minutes is about the most TOI Brash is gonna get. Chances are it would have to be someone else, which is fine. Running the goalie for Toronto doesn’t have the same effect since taking someone like Toskala or McDonald out of the game may actually improve their chances of winning. The beating needs to happen that moment and needs to come from the most pugilistically adept Ranger on the ice at that moment, regardless of skill

  16. But he doesnt necessarily have to be on the ice at the same time. It can be on the next shift. Surely Torts can mix up a line and send Brash out there against whoever ran LQ? Tonight is going to be one hell of a game regardless ….

  17. GIFT OF GAB-orik ( Vinny V ) on

    Important to come out strong in this game. 3 games in 4 nights will wear anyone out, even a team as well conditioned as the Rangers. I’m sure we’ll see that fire and passion tonight… and if Hank gets run AGAIN… i’m gonna go nuts, but hopefully someone beats the snot out of whoever tries!

    And MAKO…
    i lost it the first time i saw that commercial, it’s priceless.

  18. I agree with everybody about the amount Hank’s being run–with the way this team needs him (and the King’s game should remind everybody how much he saves their poorly-playing butts on those badly-played nights), losing him is as crippling a blow to this team as losing Gabby, if not worse. Isn’t part of Tort’s team concept standing up for your teammates?

    Anybody else kind of wishing Mara was around? Aside from the beautifully epic beard, he’d have gone after the first guy to run the crease.

  19. Grammar, relax. I’m having some fun with it. I only started this “Leaves” thing this week. I’m joking around.

    Mako and Joe, nobody will run the goalie if Brashear is on the ice — except Orr or somebody who WANTS to fight him. If Brashear comes out the next shift and fights Orr, what good is that? Brashear can’t just jump somebody else, or he’ll be suspended. And Brashear will never be able to catch Blake to hit him.

    It’s more proof how ridiculous the notion of the enforcer is. No, if somebody runs your goalie, the five guys on the ice have to take it upon themselves to take care of it. Or else, you run their goalie.

  20. 26th! Oh well, better late than never.
    Looking forward to tonight’s game after a loooooooooong couple of days off. Heading to Mohegan Sun to watch some football and have a couple of cold ones, but we’ll be back for pre-game time!
    Have a great afternoon Carp and the gang!

  21. It’s funny, Brash always used classless ways of trying to piss off Ranger fans, but now he’s a Ranger, and ALL OF A SUDDEN, he’s a good ol’ boy.

    I agree with Mako, put Voros in, he has more heart than Brash*t.

    But this goes for the whole team, stick up for the only reason this team is going anywhere !! Hank is the New York Rangers.

    If they want to play dirty, KILL !!!!!!

    There’s still a little Renney vagina tattooed in the brains of these players. It’s gonna take something serious to remove that.

  22. Leine, I have a feeling they now KNOW what they have to do. Either the disgust of Hank in the lockerroom (he may be a great team guy and a leader, he is also the KEY to anything they do, and I hope he totally torched them sometime in the past few days about it) or the evil eye of Tortsarelli hopefully did the trick. The first guy that runs Hank, next play, next shift, whatever, send Blake or someone through the glass, legally. Just level someone with a totally clean, awesome hit, then put the puck in the net! If we run their goalie of the day, WE’LL get the penalty, especially on HNIC.

  23. in regard to the 2nd new josh photo, he looks like he’s wearin the same stuff as Rick! Was this like senior portrait day, where the photographer has one color gown for the girls an another for the guys. Hmmmm, and please, Josh needs some color, he’s blindingly white! Prospal cannot be keepin all the tanning for himself!

  24. LInda

    10000% Agreed!!! that’s what Im talking about. And speaking of running goalies. I just hope its not Avery. ANYONE ELSE BUY AVERY!!!!

  25. If someone runs Hank, it must be dealt with right then and there, or on the very next shift. Those are the kind of penalties that you want to take, and those are the kinds of penalties that your team will most likely kill off. I say, if someone runs Hank tonight, no matter who is on the ice, it MUST be dealt with. And I think if nothing happens, that HANK needs to call out his team. This team should sh*t a brick every time Hank is breathed on the wrong way, because as good as we have played, and as many goals that we have scored, the fact of the matter is that this team is going nowhere without Hank. End of story. If Blake runs Hank, or anyone else, and nobody does anything, I want to see Hank stick someone right behind their knee, and then look at which ever teammate of his is close to the guy who ran him, and now stick them in the knee as well. All these announcers keep saying that this ranger team is not a “soft” team, and there we have “team toughness”, well show it dammit.

  26. It won’t be Aves, they’ll be too busy targeting him or trying to goad him into stupid penalties, but I have a feeling he’s gonna play a smart game and maybe torch em for another goal or two! I’m kinda thinking either Prospal, Dubi, or Cally may step up and do something. Cally and Dubs usually lead the team in hits anyway.

    And ya know, maybe Hank needs a bit of a Billy Smith edge and start freakin wackin guys! Either way, at some point tonight, we’re all gonna be up in arms about some freakin crap that is not called, or something bogus that is.

  27. Nasty

    You bring up a good point. I remember the days of Hextall & Billy Smith – no one used to eff with them in their crease because they used their own way of letting players know. How about a combination of BOTH our players and LQ sending a message. LQ has to have a little snarl in him too ….

    But great post and like you and Linda – I couldnt agree more :)

  28. awesome Nasty! I’d love to see that too!!! Hank really needs to get a bit of a nasty edge, it’s like he’s gotta take care of things himself at this point. If NOONE sticks up for him and levels someone tonight, he should level someone in the lockerroom! They really need to assert themselves physically, but smartly, in this game.

  29. Mako, its that whole wavelength thing! We do that quite often, we must be related!!

    Blaze, if only Voros could fight! That link was the perfect example of what needs to get done if someone even LOOKS at Hank oddly!

  30. $10,000 for a Hello Kitty watch?! Man, that’s a lil more than half of what my car cost me! I’d take that ten grand a buy myself season tix!

    Mako, did ya notice my $10 word the other day? Gotta come up with something interesting tonight.

  31. HAHAHH we MUST be ;)

    Every team KNOWS how they were able to beat us. But this is a different team and if Torts said to the media that he KNOWS they are running him on purpose and if LQ said something during a team meeting ( again we never know what happens behind closed lockerroom doors ) it will be taken care… if there is the right man for the job to set this team straight and loose… its Torts… I always trust him to do the right thing and his judgment has been pretty spot on this season…

  32. I hope sister Lundqvist makes a return to the Garden. She’s a bit milfy.

    I still find it funny that after 4 full seasons of seeing Hank play, some people still think his name is Lundquist, and after 2 full seasons, people spell Staal’s name, Stall.

    My personal favorite is Korpikowski, and Dobinski.

  33. Linda

    which thread was it? I was pretty busy yesterday and have lots of posts to catch up on? I’ll find it ;)

  34. Orr

    Agreed on Lundqvist’s sister haha. And my favorite misspelling was from training camp when I think Mike in IA (sorry man, calling you out haha) called Dubinsky Dobby. He said he was drunk, but I don’t know…

  35. Shor, I remember that, he said he was like that character in the Harry Potter movie! Grabby is hilarious!

  36. I wonder how obnoxious Cherry will be tonight and Im sure he’s say something nasty about Gaborik & Avery. However, there IS a live stream and chat MUHAHAHHHAHAH I say we ALL crash the party LOL

  37. maybeCherry will be wearing the MDZ pink jacket from the Tiger Beat cover dde posted the other day!!! That dude is hilarious, but a total chariacature.

  38. I think it’s a pretty universal hockey rule and maybe I’m just sensitive to it because I was a goalie growing up;

    Anyone even looks at your goalie the wrong way, you make them pay, floor hockey, deck hockey, pond hockey, ice hockey.

  39. OMG LINDA!!!! THat was PRICELESS!!!! I swear that’s what my holidays were like when I was a kid with my Uncles and Grandfather (RIP) Now they are entertaining the Big Guy upstairs. Thanks for posting that… Im going to send it to some “family” ;)

  40. MikeA, EXACTLY!! I played intramural in college and I was the captain of the team. My goalie got absolutely creamed in one game and nobody did a thing. I went out on the next shift and pushed the guy that ran my goalie into his goalie and took a deserved penalty. When I got out of the box, I got back to my team and let them have it. It was the last time that anyone ran ant of our guys without retaliation. My goalie, who is a good friend bought my beers all night after the game. Ahhh, college.

  41. Hands up, hands up, hands uuuuuuuup!

    60 Fagillion-nilly dollars for your single spelling error.

    Send payment to my moms hou…I mean my house !

  42. holy carp!! my bad on the spelling, i hope i’m not becoming southern by osmosis!!!

    Nasty, if I was ever in a bar fight, I’d want you on my side! THATS A TRUE TEAMMATE!!

  43. lol Orr, were you minding the twine in your underwear?

    Joe, Carp EXACTLY – and even IF it costs you a game thats a short term loss compared to the potential long term loss of Lundqvist.
    Treat Hank like he’s your pregnant wife, even if it’s unintentional let them know they better be careful.

    Avery 3 games 0 penalty min?

    Sally – Show us the BOOTS!

  44. LINDA —- awesome Youtube link, thanks :) Anyone whose family is like that — please invite me for the holidays!

  45. dde, i’ve been torchin sally all morning over the boots! she’s been kinda quiet on facebook, i wonder if she’s creating more art!

  46. from Zip if this hasn’t already been discussed:

    Ales Kotalik skating on third line with Artem Anisimov and Sean Avery. Could be interesting. Envir Lisin on fourth line with Brian Boyle and Donald Brashear, which signals that Aaron Voros will be a healthy scratch again. Henrik Lundqvist will start in net.

  47. good call dde!!! alrighty, you guys have fun, i gotta go do a lil more food shopping and get crackin on that chicken cutlet parmigiana before the man gets home! Catch yas later!!!

    LETS GO RANGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  48. Anyone ever see Boyle scrap? Damn He’s 6’7″
    He could probably give the old stiff arm to the forehead as the other guy flails his arms catching nothing but air. While eating Cool Ranch Doritos with the other hand.

  49. HAHAHA I know Linda… They are hysterically funny. Brings back good memories.

    Linda – Making Chicken Marsala over fettuccine pasta for tonight.

  50. Sorry folks, I was at a meeting all morning, then I went to Wegmans to spend 8 f’n dollars on some tahini. I’m taking the boot pictures nnnnnow. See how I get things done when it’s time for homework?

  51. I absolutely agree that there are such a thing as good penalties!!! When hank is run, the guys who runs him must be dealt with immediately regardless of who is on the ice and I would be running their goalie and “star” players a lot!!

    Have a crease clearing hard hitting physical d man day to all!!!!

    LGR!!!!

  52. ORR
    I would like to…Can’t promise you Megan, but a lot of cold Sam Adams(my best friend after Rangers) and 50″ of HD screen I coul gladly share

  53. back from a long respite
    Rangers look great
    2 things to be concerned about
    1) Gaborik staying healthy , of course
    2) complacency ( problem with all Ranger teams )
    that we will see tonight how big a problem it is or is not

    Let’s Go Rangers!!!

    great job Rick!!!

  54. I watch a lot NHL games. Since the open season on Hank, I have paying particular attention to that aspect. Other teams protect their goalie way better than the Rangers. Its like the refs give you a couple of free shots when you’re in your own crease.

    Colorado’s goalie Anderson, when he goes down he takes a couple of shots himself.

    I sure hope the Rangers and Hank step it up tonight. If some guy get’s a penalty protecting Hank, I’ll send him a beer.

    What’s the over/under for Hank runs tonight? Probably two.

    I can hardly wait for tonight’s game.

  55. Goalies remind me of soccer players, a little contact and they flop,flip and gyrate;they can take some contact, and if not, they should use their stick. I am sure it hurts real good.

  56. you have to remember, a goalie can’t brace himself for a hit. he’s trying to stay loose so he can fling his legs, arms, stick or whatever to stop the puck. It’s not like a position player where you know a hit is coming, you brace for it.

    The goalies are vulnerable. I wish hank used the other kind of goalie helmet that protects the back of his head more.

    Here’s an article on Dubinsky:
    http://www.northjersey.com/sports/pro_sports/hockey/rangers/64660602.html

  57. Goalies can take a little contact but look what happened to Toskala. If you’re not prepared and have a Justin Tuck sized guy running into you eventually the odds will not play in your favor.

    Nasty-That’s a great story. One of the most ridiculous brawls I witnessed was in college floor hockey. Guys fighting with helmets on. The captain actually held half the team back.

    It seems like Torts is gonna start Vally on Tuesday or maybe against Minny based on the out of Conference logic. Interesting.

  58. Staal and all…I love this blog! Quickly catching up but have to head out so just had to say this important stuff pre-game:

    Sally, your boots and Dubi are so going on sister blog tomorrow (in the meantime, check Spike update). Both are rocking and sassy!

    Wicky, your moments were fab, especially #6

    Leaves, Leaves, Leaves ! :)

  59. SPEED

    I spent those two hours fixing the TV, i hope Angelina Jolie didn’t try to adopt me. Id hate to miss out on an opportunity to get a piece of the Jolie pie.

    But calling Brad Pitt “daddy” just doesn’t seem right at all. It’s horrific actually.

  60. Anyone know of any site that’ll be streaming the game? I don’t have the crappy NHL network, :(

  61. Sally, your boots are made for walkin on the sister blog, with Dubi and Gomez…thanks! Check in at 5 p.m. Staal and all (and visit Spike update too)….OK, enough about me, LGR…if we win tonight it will be an unbelievable trap of leaves!!! burn em in the yard….and smoke em!

    Oy. What am I saying….see ya all post-game tomorrow. Off for the night (I swear Greg…)

  62. Laurel

    Glad you liked them!!

    Does anyone else think those boots looked…..well….SASSY!?!?!!?

  63. Any predictions for tonight?

    Im saying 3-1.

    Higgins gets his first. Avery & Gilroy.
    Gabby, Fankist 1 assist each.

  64. Sally

    Priceless!!! “He stepped on my stick and RUINED my tape” HAHAHAHAH totally something I would say playing!!!

    Awesome! Miss the beard!!!

  65. Just great, Sally. But I mentioned your boots earlier, and called you Sassy. I was worried you were mad at me.

    Yes, the beard contest will still be named after Mara. And the moustache contest after you.

  66. Carp, did you also call me a hooker and say I only like hockey because my boyfriend does? Of course I’m not mad at you!

    Can’t wait! The 1st Annual Sassy Sally Celebrity Rabies Awareness Rangers Moustache Extravaganza Contest!?!?!

  67. funny all this talk about players running Hank and what the Rangers and Torts would do about it. And then you realize both coaches will be behind the USA bench during the Olympics.

    And I can’t imagine the game would get as chippy as everyone believes it will be.

  68. LMFAO!!!! I love Mara, that’s the craziest mike up ever! Singin jingle bells, tellin gomez happy birthday, asking for a hug. Phone rang had to stop it! Great link Sassy Sally!!!! and with those boots, you’d fit in down here, as long as you’re wearin em with a dress

  69. holy carp did you see maccarones EYEBROWS in that pic, we gotta have a Maccarone Cavalcade of Evil Eyebrowness contest also!

  70. lmao dde! the floatin josh head is the best! someone make a halloween mask out of it!!!Not as evil as the Torts face,but just as hilarious

  71. ddebened, that’s great! I always knew there was something not right about that kid.

    Linda, there you go with the eyebrowism again. Glad you like the boots :)

  72. ok which one of you boneheads made the captain clutch twitter page??? instant classic, especially with the pic of him in his ll uniform!

  73. Paul Mara!!!!

    Words cannot express how much I miss that beard–and I loved his in game comments. Especially the rendition of jingle bells.

    Less than 2 hours to game time, guys! Need to finish the grading before then. Go Rangers!

  74. dde, i’m a NY girl living in da dirrrrrrrrrty south. I have always like the Jets AND the Giants, and I dated a guy from Brooklyn who’s family were huge Colts fans, so I like them too, except when they play the Jets and Giants!

  75. Leine, what do you teach?

    I think I’m gonna watch the game at the pub, so I’ll be without my boneheads for the evening :(

  76. ZzZz NYR ZzZz "Saturday night is hockey night !!! " ...says Greg L. on

    Actually Sally , that was me that said it , not Carp.

    Nice sexy ,slutty boots…good pick!!

    Rangerssssssssss letss goooooooo!!!!!!!!!!! GAMETIME IS SOOOON !!!!!!!!!!!

  77. no pro down here dde, it’s either Auburn or Alabama! So either half the people wear orange and blue, or crimson and white. right now i’m watching Florida and Arkansas, just passin time til the man gets home and I cook dinner, then watch our game!

  78. Sally–

    I grade for the Math and Physics Departments at my school.

    Sadly, my school doesn’t have Rangers Games on TV… I rely on the kindness of my fellow boneheads to post me a stream.

    Half-finished problem sets. Hockey in an hour!

  79. I been studying enough today, can’t force myself to study any more at this point. Game can’t start soon enough!

    LET’S GO RANGERS!!!

  80. Prediction: 5-2 Rangers. Higgins gets his first goal. Gaborik streak continues. Rozsival strains his uterus.

  81. Hey guys can someone please post a stream for tonight’s game.I’m trapped in the poconos cant get Msg here thanks LETS GO RANGERS!!!!!

  82. ZzZz NYR ZzZz "HNIC !!! " ...says Greg L. on

    WHOOOHOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! RANGER time!!!!

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