Game day


So the Blue Jackets come to town, in what should be one of the softer games in this stretch of five in eight nights, six in 10.

Should be.

But Columbus is 6-1-3 in its last 10, which looks good on paper. The one loss was 9-1 to Detroit. Five of those games have gone to a skills competition. Still, do you think the Rangers would sign for one loss and 15 points in 10 games? You bet they would.

Here are the pregame notes.

I still hope to make it do MSG tonight. I’ll see youse all later.


According to Steve Zipay, Callahan goes to center tonight, between Lisin and Kotalik, and Higgins moves up to the first line with Prospal and Gaborik. Zipay says, according to Tortorella, that Gaborik leads the team with 28 even-strength scoring chances (this is a coaching staff’s unofficial stat) and Higgins is second with 24. Somewhat surprising. Drury skated this morning and gets closer to returning, but won’t play tonight.

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  1. Oh, mandelbaum, hu?
    What I meant to say is that it’s still faster than most of the computers. Viva Apple!
    Being first almost assures you will not get carped. Almost….

  2. You’re still No. 1, Izzy.

    I think I gained five pounds just reading yesterday’s comments about burgers and key lime pie dipped in chocolate on a stick.

  3. IIB

    Have you jailbroken yours yet ? If not, dooo it !!!

    Booo to Piggins. Torts should throw Artie on the top line with Gabby, and Vinny, just to see how it works. I don’t know if he’s ever played wing before, but who knows. He’s a hell of a lot better than Piggins.

    I just hope they win tonight. I need a birthday win !

  4. onecupin69yearsand counting on

    I think Valle should play more than one game in row, give hank a rest and a subtle message BONK, also maybe the d will step up.

  5. greg_section403 on

    “Gaborik leads the team with 28 even-strength scoring chances (this is a coaching staff’s unofficial stat) and Higgins is second with 24.”

    Gulp! If Higgins is the Rangers 2nd best player in terms of even strength scoring chances, we’re in deep doodoo.

  6. THE REAL MikeyNJ on


    Can I take credit for giving you your new nickname?

    I love the fact that is your new handle Blogomama!!

    And let s TRY And get a freakin win tonight!

    Higgins has played better the last few games, even if its not showing up on the score sheet

    Lets hope first line minutes gets him going tonight

    Lets Go Rangers!!!!!

  7. Higgins is gonna turn it around. I like the way he is playing. He will snap out of this. The biggest problem Higgins had was when he was really struggling, he started moping, and lost his focus. Torts benched him and he has been better since. I believe Sather should offer him an extension before he heats up and those scoring chances start going in. He is one of the few Rangers that actually goes to the net. That’s why he has those scoring chances. The NYR are short on that type of player.

    Lock him up while he is CHEAP!!!!

  8. My buddy just emailed me the pic I posted here yesterday of Avery and Trey Anastasio

    “Hey, look at this picture someone posted on the lohud rangers blog”

    pretty funny

  9. Orr, happy bday, buddy.

    Izzy-yes, you can misspell the original name, but that disqualifies you from #1. Let alone world’s greatest.

    Greg403- we are in deep doodoo as of this am regardless. Trying and hoping to swim out…

  10. Higgins is gonna turn it around. I like the way he is playing. He will snap out of this. The biggest problem Higgins had was when he was really struggling, he started moping, and lost his focus. Torts benched him and he has been better since. I believe Sather should offer him an extension before he heats up and those scoring chances start going in. He is one of the few Rangers that actually goes to the net. That’s why he has those scoring chances. The NYR are short on that type of player.


    I’m sorry, I disagree with you 1000%. The guy has one goal in what 23 games with PRIME icetime? GAME OVER BUDDY

    This is the same team that jettisoned Petr Prucha who NEVER got “mopey” during slumps and benchings. Ridiculous.

    Higgins is garbage. Twice the salary and half the heart of another certain forward who was not afraid to crash the net, and actually could put score a few goals.

  11. Sorry Salty, Prucha was a total fluke, it happens. He’s just as much a garbage player. Two goals in 22 games with Phoenix, enough said. And power-play time too. I’d be willing to bet you Prucha never gets to 20 goals again in the NHL…

  12. Sorry Salty, Prucha was a total fluke, it happens. He’s just as much a garbage player. Two goals in 22 games with Phoenix, enough said. And power-play time too. I’d be willing to bet you Prucha never gets to 20 goals again in the NHL…


    Half the salary and twice the goals? I’ll take it.

  13. Let’s face it people. The rangers suck, there going nowhere and it won’t change as long as Dolan is the owner and sather is the GM. Maybe ranger fans should stop buying tickets, boycott and force Fatso to sell the rangers/knicks.

  14. Blue Jackets will not be an easy task, regardless their record. Torts really doesn’t sound like he has an answer at the moment. I didn’t particularly like his comments after the last game:”You just stay with it”. Stay with what? It hasn’t been working. Isn’t that a definition of insanity?

  15. Orr, Happy B-day bud. As a present, I think your girl is going to be on Letterman or Leno or one of those shows this week.

    TK, you’re right. I should have known. Zip’s overseas. Arthur Staple is filling in. So we’re stealing from somebody new this week.

  16. JJP….. you forgot to mention that he scored one of those goals while he was on his back, thats got to be worth the all star of the minute mention, or something.

  17. Carp- it’s ok, with all this $20/month access fee they can afford it. And some key lime pie. Please, I wonder how many people pay.

  18. Prucha’s first goal was scored while on his back, his second while on his stomach. He just seems to have lost the ability to score while on his skates. (Insert “He always gets knocked off his skates anyway” joke here…)

  19. I think Higgins scoreing absence is more the fluke than the norm. His playing style would suggest that, he goes to the net allways. He will come around for sure.

  20. Reality:
    Prucha and Higgins have the exact same GP(22), G(2), and A(3) thus far.
    They are tied for the 342rd “ranking” in the NHL.

    I just do not see Higgins “turning his game around”. He’s another Drury.

  21. I know higgins has not done much so far, but I also know he is a better player than that. I was happy when Sather signed him and I still feel he will be good for this team.

  22. Call me crazy,
    If the NYR are looking for a winger for Prospal/Gabby, they have 2 players out with injury, and the 2 kids that have played since day one (MDZ & Gilroy)–who by the way are the least of the NYR worries on the ice–would it be insane to call up GRACHEV right now, and put him on the top line?

  23. Think about it this way…….

    I don’t know the stats – I’m just winging it here from general impressions watching this club perform..
    It is just possisble, that if Rangers had not picked up
    Gaborik………………….they might just be at this point winless for the entire season so far.

  24. fron the last thread


    you’re welcome, that’s a roster that might work better.


    love the cookbook name

    current thread


    happy birthday bro!

    NO more prucha talk!!! prucha still??!!

    Have an anti-rozy d man day to all!!

    the first line needs to be AA avery gabby, second kots vinny cally…all our scoring is in one line, need to split up vinny gabby!!


  25. CR9

    The funniest part of that was it was the third replay they showed, the second from a different angle. During the second replay my dad says to me, I think his pants came down during the tackle. And sure enough they show the other angle where his pants come down. Nice job NBC.

  26. Shoot, the real blogmama wishes ORR a happy birthday. FYI, ilb’s therapy dogs are next door at sister blog.

    I am nervous about tonight…..

  27. I was away all weekend so I didn’t get to post my thoughts on the game. Really two things.

    1) I thought the Rangers played well enough to beat the Panthers minus 2 mistakes (one fluky).

    2) Rozsival had his best game in a long long time, which I guess isn’t hard to do with how terrible he’s been, but he was much more decisive in his decision making on both sides of the puck. I hope he can keep it up.

    Good to see Higgins get some top line PT. Mind you it won’t stay that way, but he’s getting chances. You don’t go from consistently scoring 20+ goals 4 years in a row to forgetting how to finish that fast. TIME FOR THE HAT TRICK HIGGY BEAR!!! haha

  28. oh man..what is it now 2pm…20 Uhr

    when is the game ? 7pm…. 1 Uhr

    no way way..nooooooooooooooo

  29. Laurel, isn’t Tali the cutest?

    Gang, go check Tali out on sisterblog. In fact, you should go there at least once a day or more. The place is amazing!

  30. Carp – Thanks for posting Zipay’s updates as well as your own insight on all things Rangers. As an out of town fan (up in Boston) i recently clicked on my Favorite’s Link to Blue Notes to find that it can now only be accessed by Newsday subscribers and Optimum Online Users, making your blog my go-to source for info.

  31. Laurel

    Now that I’ve seen this, I only hoped that I had gotten to see Jaromir’s ***. Jaromir is dreamy!

  32. CR9- I went to a football game once. Honestly, that was all I could see and understand all game. About twenty plus of them. Sorry, not my thing…

  33. Great news!! Drury will not play tonight!

    I just had Chipotle steak burrito for lunch and now i need a Chipotlaway!


    Happy Birthday, dawg! :)

  34. Higgins is not another Drury. How can he be? He plays for alot less…so a Drury comparison is not valid.


    I’m talking about the guy people will perpetually be waiting for to “turn his game around”. It never happened for Drury, and I don’t see it happening for Higgins. He, like Drury, has been given plenty of minutes and has fluffed many an opportunity to bury the puck at key times.

  35. what if concussion knocked Drury straight and he’ll come back as a completely different player! Vocal…aggressive… player that will lead by example…will get irritated every time someone asks him aboot the LLWS… will score timely goals and play incredible defense! then what?

  36. Then he’d take off his jersey to reveal Prospal or Gaborik that he’s wearing underneath.

  37. How about Drury gets another concussion and is forced to retire. What that means is his salary comes off the cap.

  38. THE REAL MikeyNJ on

    Does anyone else understand Torts’ reasoning for keeping Girardi and Staal together?

    The last few games they both have been mediocre to not so great, and neither one of them is an offensive Dman

    Why wouldnt Torts put DelZ or Gilroy with one of them and MAKE Staal and Girardi play shut down D while the other joins the rush?

    Would it be so bad if the D-PAirs were:

    Staal- Gilroy
    Del Z- Girardi
    Redden – Rosival

    Keep the R & R boys to the third pair and keep giving Redden second unit PP time.

    Keeps Rosi’ On ice time down, so when he does get out there he’s fresh and could, God forbid, contribute again

    Or is it jsut me seeing Staal & Girardi not working too well together anymore??

  39. Everybody’s happy Drury’s not playing again?
    You think we’re a better team without him ? Just like Rozi & Redden, we’re stuck with him and I don’t think he’s hurting the team.

  40. I think Sather brought in a coach whos style only fits Gaborik’s and Prospal and not the rest of the team. This is why I think Stall and Callahan especially have regressed. Tort’s is trying to make Stall the next Bobby Orr when in reality Stall is a good defensive defencemen. I think by the end of the year people will be calling for Tort’s head on a platter.

  41. Don’t know why Tort’s doesn’t place Stall with MDZ and Girardi
    with Gilroy and put Rozi and redden back together like they were last year.

  42. Good afternoon, Carp! I’ve got my exclamation points back!

    ORR, happy birthday!!!

    Greg, if you call me a slut again… just don’t call me a slut ever again. I’m serious. Not cool.

    CCCP, did you find your chipotlaway? I really hope you did.

  43. CCCP- yes, it’s possible for Drury to get what you described after concussion, from a medical point of view. Absolutely. The problem is that, he’ll probably be scoring on Ranger’s net.

  44. Sally, we are welcome back usual you!!

    I don’t recall him calling you that…I’m sure he didn’t. You know he can’t spell s….

  45. Calli to center ? Lets move Prospal to goal , Gaborik to D and Hank to wing.
    Just call up a center already. Locke has 30 pts in 20 games. I know it would be stop gap, but they would not have to move everybody out of position.

  46. Not the point Jason. As I said I know it would be stop gap, but at this point they have to many guys playing out of position because they are to stubborn to call up a center. By the way Jason, what are thoughts on PAP.

  47. Higgins, although snakebit really is the only player besides Cally that I see consistently go to the net. All our forwards seem to be just lurking around the perimeter even when the puck is near the crease.

    Whatever. LET’S GO RANGERS!!!!!

  48. Folks, the players aren’t motivated; they need a spark. Torts should get a life-size cut-out picture of a naked Dolan (I’m sure there are plenty of examples on-line) cover it with picture pieces of a suit and put it in the locker room, then every time we a game, Torts peels off a piece and he’ll reveal an evermore naked Dolan. I bet cha that will get a reaction from the team.

  49. My little bro is getting taken to the Rangers game tonight. His gf has an NYPD family member who is going to let him meet the Rangers.

    I asked him to tell Avery I would love his sloppy seconds, but I am sure he will not.

  50. I hate technology today. Just realized all the links to me today where wrong. ARGHHHHHH! This is the real one.
    One day when I get unstupid I’ll get this down. Or maybe just start sending you all letters.

  51. sally

    Was it a boot reference? I can’t imagine he really meant it! Either way sorry you are upset, do we need a woodshed??

  52. The only reason Staal is playing poorly is because STAAL is playing poorly. He looks like sh*t. If you remember in the playoffs last year, Staal looked great. Torts was the coach then. The one thing I have noticed about Staal is that he appears to have lost a little quickness. Do you remember in the playoffs how he would retrieve a puck in the corner, and use a quick reverse move to evade the forechecker and make a nice pass out of the zone? Everytime I have seen him try that this season, he gets hit. There is something wrong with Staal’s game right now, and it is ALL Staal. Torts has nothing to do with it.

  53. THE REAL MikeyNJ on


    I agree, I’ve noticed him getting burned by that move too. It worked so well the past two seasons too, just not as quick as he should be

    Maybe he’s a little banged up

    Or maybe change up his partner and wake him up a bit

  54. Staal gets hit doing that quick spin move because he uses it to much and everybody knows it. They are all ready for it, no surprizes anymore.

  55. So for those Higgy Bear haters out there, the good news is that Gomez is out for a little while.

    Also when looking at the points per million stat:

    Gomez: 11 points, 7.5 mil, 1.467 ppm
    Higgins: 5 points, 2.25 mil, 2.222 ppm

    Higgins is doing better in that department. Mind you he’s a much better player than he’s showing and should have at least 10 points by now, but he’s struggled to finish. Everyone that Drury has played with this year has struggled and couldn’t get out of the funk. Maybe he can break it tonight.

  56. Salty – the only thing I can disagree with you about Higgins and Drury is that Higgins is at least effective both on and off the puck. He makes some nice moves, can carry the puck for more than 2 seconds, and hits and forechecks better than Drury does. Drury pretty much is paid to do one thing right now, block shots on the PK. Higgins adds much more on both sides of the puck than Drury.

  57. I really don’t understand why we don’t call up a center. Someone mentioned Locke…why not? He’s ripping up AHL…we need a center…I don’t get it.

  58. wicky229(and no, I don't wear a visor!) on


    how about those raiders…shocking how they play with just a mediocre qb!

  59. Locke is another Krog. He’s not an NHL player and is probably way too small to compete at the NHL level (which has always been Krog’s problem since he is really skilled). Higgins and Cally both played center coming up into the league so its not like they are brand new to the position.

  60. Good evening, Sally!

    Sorry I missed that post by Greg. Please let me know if it happens again … and if it does, it will never happen again after that. I promise.

    Hear that, Greg? I am not warning you because I didn’t see it. But if it does happen and I do see it, there won’t be a warning.

  61. ZzZz NYR ZzZz " Just win ,baby !!!"... says Greg L. on

    Happy Birthday Orr!!! Holey Hell yer getting old dude!!

    Yo Sally , Gimme a break. I called yer boots slutty , gawdd.
    You come on here ANOUNCING you have these boots. I read all the posts ,maybe you should read ’em a little closer. You can stick those boots where the sun don’t shine..Don’t start something and whine later.seriously. Geezeee , go watch a Sabres game or something.

    On a brighter note…WOOOOHOOOO RANGERS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! gotta win ,gotta win!!!!!

    HAHA ORR , you old man you !!

  62. Greg, you cant go out calling a ladies boots that word. my sis would kill me if i did. clothes/accesories are sacred.she probly took it the wrong way. forget about it

  63. ZzZz NYR ZzZz " Just win ,baby !!!"... says Greg L. on

    Sally yer full of crap, ya never said happy birthday to me when alot of other did. Them when yer comes around I say it to you even though you stiffed me. I could care less if ya never liked me ,It shows all the time. Then this dumbazz statement?

    Carp I know the blog rules ,you don’t put me on trial because of the stuiped things Sally says.


  64. ZzZz NYR ZzZz " Just win ,baby !!!"... says Greg L. on

    Yo Rangers , im done with it , why bring up shopping attire on a Rangers blog? Spouting off that you love the Sabres?
    Ranger909 ,keep this up and I ll have to spank you in NHL10 hahahaa.

  65. Callahan, and a Higgins are not centers. Locke is a center, not saying he is going to save the season, but he makes more sense right now than PAP. Those that mentioned that Staal had a good playoff last year are incorrect. He and Girardi had to be replaced by Redden to play against Ovechkin in the series. Staal has been fading since mid season last year.

  66. Greg, if you didn’t, I apologize.

    Let’s just say, to everybody, that stuff is absolutely not cool and will not be tolerated.

  67. Greg- you need to cool off, please. You did say it, I just found it. It was in reference to her boots, but it was still ugly. I’m sure if you’d sorry, everyone could move on.

  68. greg, i just got torn up by someone else 7-1. i stopped payin attention after their third goal though.

  69. Johnny,

    I’ll give you that Higgins is a better skater in general and actually looks like a hockey player at times, holds onto the puck a little longer and has _attempted_ some moves.

    I’d take Matt Cullen back in a SECOND over the both of them. And I didn’t like him at all, but WOW would I take him and his contract back right now.

  70. Greg, I’m giving you a virtual scratch behind the ears. Let’s calm down. It’s game night after all and that’s sometimes the problem with typed comments. They don’t always imply the vocal inflection needed to avoid misunderstandings. Of course, I never have that problem….:)

    Whew, I hope Higgy’s this on fire tonight!

  71. Matt Cullen, Wow.
    Shows how desperate we all are for a center around here.
    Even when in full health, the Rangers need 2 centers. A 1 and a 2.

  72. It looks like none of the games this team plays will be soft ones this year. They lost a gimme to the Islanders and then lost the last game when their opponent was playing its third game in four nights. I am just hoping they don’t play Carolina until after the Canes get on a short winning streak, because you know the Rangers will fold against a team on a long losing streak like a cheap goalie net.

  73. Wicky…I’m tellin you if Russell hadn’t been playing this whole time, we could have 5 wins! I think I need to burn my JaMarcus jersey

  74. With all these games coming up, which game do you think Hank will sit out? I’m thinking Friday at Tampa.

    I’m surprised he’s playing tonight actually considering Torts’ tendency to play Vali vs West Coast teams

  75. Guys, can you tell me what this means?

    They always were afraid schto ja rodinu prodal
    a po pravde ja bil prosto malenkij medvedik
    sel na velosipedik i vsjo nahuj proebal…

    I think its Ukranian? And I have no clue if it’s blog friendly or not. Apologies if it’s not!

  76. Hi folks, good evening. What will the score be tonight vs the jackets? my guess is a lucky 3-2 win or maybe a gmae that will go to overtime..But we will still play crap hockey. Well win, just so that we can loose the next 2 games.
    Its weird but sometimes i really dont want them to win. Theyre just sucha lousy team they dont deserve wins.

  77. NYRGuy with an actual hockey post. be careful, you could get banned for talking about hockey.

  78. Sally, that’s a spirit, girl!!

    Shoreyuken- it’s yumora, sheesh..Lev Tolstoy is turning in his grave…

  79. Haha bulldog

    I was trying to change the subject for that reason alone. I’d rather hear some more bashing of how crappy we’re playing and how we probably won’t come out to play.

    Dorsett is out tonight for Columbus with a concussion…he’s a feisty player that actually has a bit of offensive ability as well.

  80. LMAO Sally!!

    where did you get this? its in Russian and it is semi-blog friendly

    do you want me to translate? it might not make much sense in english tho

  81. Bull dog, ha! Hey, just some pre-game banter….I think Carp will probably clean slate. If not, you’ve gotten an education of sorts here.

    Hmmm. Shory can’t spell in Russian, maybe that’s why I couldn’t find it. If the translation is, um, questionable, private e-mails please (and tell me too!)

  82. Sally, it’s Russian. And if I translate, Greg’s remark would sound like an innocent baby talk.

  83. ZzZz NYR ZzZz " Just win ,baby !!!"... says Greg L. on

    OK ilb,,,goooosefrabaaaaa!!! Tanks Carp.

    Laurel..Blogmam? or is it Mamma ,mummu , or just blogmamma. I like all of ’em. Dam virtual scratches, calms a guy down every time.

    Hope someone did the ice good today.

  84. ZzZz NYR ZzZz " Just win ,baby !!!"... says Greg L. on

    yeah , easy Sally , don’t wanna pull a “sassy sally” and get all freaked out about it. Easy on the russian jargon everyone. Things could get too sensitive for a few peeps in here.

  85. CCCP, of course! It’s a great movie but I like the book better (I know, cliche). Actually Eugene Hutz signed my copy of the book after a show once. He wrote “VICTOR HUGO! Eug Hutz”! He was quite wasted.

  86. Yikes

    Fur is flying all over the place with in our own. Good Hockey evening all!!!!

    Na vashe zdorovya!!!!!!!!!!

  87. See, just when you think Greg has gone off the ledge, he comes back and is the Greg I adore….(scratchy scratch!)

    Greg, I am having so many tech issues the past few days I may soon appear as bigmum and then I’ll just have to go off a ledge myself :)

    Boys, it’s been fun pre-game but I think I’m still suffering warren aftershock….gonna settle in for game and pass on chat tonight. Now that my link is set though (for now) if you missed ilb’s therapy pups earlier, go visit sister blog.

    I know return you to your regularly scheduled programming. LGR!!!!!

  88. Told you!

    CCCP- I think the whole “War and Piece” would be easier to translate in English than just two words- ” nahuy projebal”

  89. what i learned from this garden of dreams segment:

    wade redden, without shoulder pads, looks like he weighs 120 pounds, soaking wet.

  90. ZzZz NYR ZzZz " Just win baby , just win!!!"... says Greg L. on

    Higgins on the first line!!?? Cally as center? Our team is outta sync :) and we can’t get all tradsie tradsie on them.
    Everything is all scrambled up and players are here and over there. What are we to think ? Do we have a problem here or do we coast this thing out? Do we panick or just stay calm? Do we fire blame at coaches,players or Management?? As a fan , what am I looking for …just a win?
    Or do I look into the big picture and vision new players trying to jell? Someone needs to adress the media and tell us..what is going on here. Are we stalling time untill our 2 mediocure centers come back? I really don’t know , so for now …Just win baby,just win!

    Watch Gaborik , hes gooood!!

  91. The only question remains … will we emerge victorious … or will be bush-league another game?

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