Rangers-Sabres in review


I gotta tell you, I met Derek Stepan the day before the Traverse City tournament, and I thought, “Wow, this kid is confident and he is mature.”

But I hadn’t seen him play.

Then I saw him play, and I thought, “Wow, this kid is pretty good.”

Then I spoke with him a few more times, and thought, “He’s really likeable, I hope he makes it.”

Then I saw him play a few more times, and I thought, “This kid has to make the team because he can do everything on the ice, including, if needed, kill penalties. He makes his linemates better. He’s got good wheels, good hands, good shot, goes to the net, isn’t afraid in the corners, cares about his defensive play, cares about his faceoffs.”

Then I still thought, “Well, they’re handing the No. 1 center job to Erik Christensen, and Artem Anisimov is entrenched, and Brian Boyle is a pretty good fit on the fourth line, and when Chris Drury comes back, I could still see them sending Stepan down, especially since he wouldn’t require waivers.”

Then I saw last night’s game.

The kid isn’t going anywhere, and I think the captain is going to have to play another position next week.

Some other thoughts:

1) They were singing Girardi’s praises, and he was pretty good.

2) I loved Del Zotto’s game, and I really believe all the work he did with Gary Roberts in the off-season is going to help him avoid the sophomore slump, and help him become a more physical defenseman. He seems to like that side of the game, too. I said it last year. He has a chance to be something special.

3) I see Rozsival still fishing for pucks in front when he should be knocking somebody on their Aasen.

4) I loved that they ran the Geico “Jackwagon” ad during the game.

5) I noticed this during the preseason and said it the other night. I think we’re in for more scoring this year, though I don’t know why. Not just the Rangers. All around the league.

6) Said this, too. This Rangers team, with the young core it now has, seems more energetic, better on the forecheck, and seems to move its collective feet a lot better than the 2009-10 bunch that far too often went into 85-percent, full-glide mode.

7) Why does MSG Network continue to cut short the best piece of programming it has: John Tortorella’s post-game presser? In fact, last night it only stayed for three questions, all by Sam Rosen. What’s the point of having a camera at the press conference and showing none of the questions from the press? You are the rightsholder. You should be able to get a 1-on-1 with the coach any time you want. So why do you take a press conference and make it a 1-on-1?

8) We haven’t talked about this much, but Avery is a lot closer to being Avery through the preseason and one regular-season game, isn’t he?

9) I am really, really, really glad that the Dubinsky kiss on Stepan was only on the face shield and not on the cheek. Whew.

Gotta go. Big last-minute meeting with Mr. T this morning. See youse later, or tomorrow from — yuck — Uniondale, N.Y.

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  1. RE Lundqvist

    It cannot be white washed. He was badly beaten on those long shots from the blue line, and they were all stoppable.

    If I was that coach I’d park him in that net in practice, and have the guys shoot those kind of hard ones at him continually, with a few guys milling around in front of the crease, until he finally gets it, on keeping his knees together when he is out there. In fact if it had happened a wee bit earlier, the outcome of that game might well have been different. Do they have a goal tending coach? If so could someone hold a mirror to his nostrils and see if he still breathes?

    LQ never uses his pads in conjunction with one another, they always operate as individual defensive units. This is one of his greatest weaknesses.

  2. . . . and if it hasn’t been said 1000 times already, Stepan’s mom is HOT!!! So is his sister.

  3. I think Staal reached a new level of softness on the last Sabres goal. Sauer was solid, and despite the fact that everybody wants to make him the new whipping boy, I thought Emminger was good.

  4. bulldog

    So did I. Do you seem to feel that there is a mind set with some of the bonesters that have a conviction about certain players and that nothing they do will be acceptable? I know
    that I have one about Roszival and admit it…but in my case he keeps making my conviction about him more ingrained by the night after night sameness to his inadequacies. If he really turns his game aroudn ( and make no mistake..he has the talent
    but his tameness comes fromm something within. I do not know ifhecan overcome them.

    Take EC for example. There is an almost furtiveness about his play that makes him a good target, but in his quiet and unassuming manner he is often quite effective. But there are those who will never accept him.

  5. There aren’t any #21 sweaters left because they were all sold last season. When I say “sold”, I mean “burned in a ritual exorcism”, of course.

    Rosen got three questions with Torts? After “Can I ask a question please, Coach?” and “Why isn’t Willie Mitchell a Ranger?”, I can’t think of anything else Torts could’ve been asked anyway. What was the third one?

  6. The kid can play! I know it’s just one game into the season, but we haven’t had this much excitement over a rookie player in a long time.

    Even though the team looked good last night I’m still going to keep in mind the way the last two seasons started and the play after the beginning of the season hot streak.

  7. Fran, you’re right. The first two goals allowed by Lundqvist were very stoppable.

    CWgatti, Derek’s mom is a fox and if he hasn’t heard it already, I suspect that his teammates are going to be reminding him of that fact.

  8. charlie,
    I am not sure which game you watched, regarding Emminger. he was physical, and smart with the puck. I know many “boneheads” have decided he is the new Redden, but maybe you should actually watch him play before you decide he is awful.

  9. Great start……buffalo is a very solid team……we got the bounces that we never got last year!

  10. Gotta agree with you Carp – the play of MDZ only seems stronger than last year – he is a physical D man who can play the rush well and is not intimidated by anyone. I think that is he gets a bit skilled in his point shot, we have the makings of a long term D man who will carry the team – perhaps even more so than Staal?

    Stepan was remarkable as well, and not just for his goals. He has a good sense of where he is on the ice and what is happening – pretty good for someone who is only 20? Wow – this kid has had some good coaches and teams along the way no doubt.

    A good question: Where exactly does Drury fit on this team? Or perhaps he does not really fit anymore? Is it time to part ways with the Captain? Your thoughts…..

  11. wicky (Our D is still SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    morning ILB and all!

    I still think our d is waaay tooo soft. I don’t think eminger played that poorly at all. He did fairly well physically and that is how he needs to be contributing with the softness of this d corps.

    NO WAY should any one be complaining about eminger without prefacing it with serious complaints about rozy. He was much worse than eminger.

    I would slide drury into EC’s spot when he is able to play. Everyone else seems right where they should be (except our d which still needs a couple different guys).

    off to work, later assens!

  12. Ilbzotenko2001 on

    Good morning, boneheads!
    Feels good, eh?

    Before we start complaining about Henrik, who did let two soft goals, may I remind you that he kept his team in the game during the first half of the first period, and made a few crucial saves late in the game? He isn’t in his best form yet, but Miller was far from stellar too.. I wouldn’t worry about our goalie..

    Our defense as a group looked pretty good. They still lack physicality, but they move well and are able to pass the puck, and played their position well. Eminger, despite taking two penalties played well, I agree. He can skate and he can pass and was surprisingly physical. Pretty good for #6. If anyone deserves to sit next game, it’s Rozsival.

    Stepan is an obvious choice for number one star. He has an excellent positional sense, knows when to arrive, and his back checking was much better than I expected. Given time, we may actually have a true number one center. I just hope they don’t rush him there full-time. Remember, the first line was totally shutdown last night. The opposing team will deploy their best d-pair and best checkers any time they can, so it will happen often. IMHO, the best way to use him is alternate him and EC between first and third lines depending on the opposition and the game situation. But I’m very excited about our young core.

    Avery played an excellent game, so did Dubinsky, and I can go on and on.
    But one player I want to mention is AA . Folks, he has arrived. It was obvious in the preseason, and he continued last night. He was their best player when Bufallo was pressing hard( first half of first period and stretches of third). I think we may have one of the better second line, two-way centers in the league very soon.

    Lastly, I mentioned that last night, but when the game was out of reach and the score was embarrassing, one would expect the opposing team to deploy their goon out to send the message. I doubt Lindy considered that option last night. Against Boogart?

  13. I don’t think AA has “arrived”, he has steadily improved the whole time he’s been with the Wolfpack and Rangers. He worked his way up from 3rd line center to 1st line center in HFD, then to NY 3rd line, now 2nd line.

    Good to watch a player develop the way they’re supposed to!

  14. A glorious morning to all! Carp, agree with everything you noted.

    Last night’s game was fun to watch as we beat a good team in their house. Some might say “Yeah, but Buffalo played the night before” which doesn’t mean squat this early on and could also be seen as an advantage for the Sabres as they got over their first game jitters the night before.

    Defense: Last night’s game would have been one of our better defensive efforts last year. We showed improvement as a group of five in our own zone as all five players were quick to pressure the puck and take away time and space. There were a times that Buffalo kept the puck in our zone but they rarely got clear shooting lanes or uncontested shots. We were more physical and a second or third Ranger in on the play frequently came away with the puck. Our transition game was quicker and it seemed like there were more times that three or more players were pushing the puck up the ice as a unit.

    Offense: Five goals scored on a world class goaltender says a lot and Gaborik not scoring any of them puts an asterisk on it. Not taking anything away from Stephan, but his three goals demonstrate how this team’s offense is better. His first goal, a misdirect off his stick, was the result of the shot from the point getting through traffic. That would have been blocked last year. His second goal was made possible by a good forecheck, getting the puck to the net and by bodies (Stephan’s and others) being in position to bury a rebound. Good hands by Stephan there. The third goal also resulted from a strong forecheck, a great pass by Avery (not mentioned nearly soon enough as Sam and Joe gushed over Stephan’s hat trick) and Stephan going to the net. In sum, they were more focused on getting pucks and bodies going to the net. Finally! I think our first line will score more as our second and third lines will force teams to spread their defense over three lines and not focus so much on Gaborik.

    There’s still room for alot of improvement and getting rid of Rozy would be a good start. He looks even softer with the added size and toughness going on around him. We started the last two seasons looking pretty good but there are enough guys here that remember that so I’m pretty confident the team is looking to improve beyond the first ten games. These guys might actually gel into a real team with an identity and reputation for being tough and relentless on both sides of the puck. Hope is a good thing!

  15. Some things to work on, sure. Am I pleased with the win, sure am. This team sure doesn’t have any quit, nor do I think we will sit on leads. I think it is going to be a very entertaining season.

  16. What to do with Drury? I’d keep him out until we lose. Where does he fit in? Sauer looked good out there. Please trade rosival for picks. We have enough strength on d to free up that spot (as well as the cap hit).

  17. did I hurt your feelings there chuckie. you are just one of those guys that follow the herd, pick on Emminger, OK i’ll follow along. how about you get an opinion of your own.

  18. Doodie Machetto on

    I saw a stat in the last thread that I think should bring everyone back down to earth. Fabian Brunnstrom had a hat trick in his first game too. So let’s not start annointing Stepan yet as anything besides a rookie with a lot of potential.

    That said, I’m excited to watch him grow.

  19. doodie, nobodys annointing him anything. were just excited and rightfully so for the kid. theres gonna be plenty of game days where we are pissin n moaning about the same players we all praised tonight.

  20. theres nothing you can do but praise the guy for his almsot seamless transition from college to nhl. brunstrom had high expectations too, so i cant argue that we shouldnt expect this from him most of the time. i just hope when he does go thru his slumps, he can stay in the lineup instead of goin to hartford. torts has to keep him like he did dz last year, and dz had his slumps for sure last year. doodie, i dont wanna jump the gun with him either, but isnt there just something about this kid that makes you feel like hes gonna be somethin great? i do. i dont think he’ll be winning any rocket richard or mvp awards, but do think he is gonna be a helluva player for us.

  21. Got back from the harness racing Breeders Crown @ Pocono Downs (I know no ones cares, but there is a connection between Ranger hockey and harness racing – see Gilles Villemure and Rod Seiling) late last night I knew from ESPN on my phone the score and that Stepan had got the hat. On the 2 hour drive back while contemplating my track losses, ‘Roxanne’ by the Police came on and I began to smile. Why?, all you gotta do is substitute ‘Stepan’ for ‘Roxanne’, especially in the chorus line . . .”Ste-PANNNNN, you can put on the red light, Ste-PANNNNNNNNN, put on the red light . . . . . It made for a very easy ride home.
    Now I am waiting for some young bonehead to re-record with the current lyrics.

    Only question left is now that we have all reserved a spot for him in the HHOF what does he do for an encore?? The last rookie to break in like this was Donnie Murdoch and we all know he was the Marilyn Monroe of the Rangers. I expect Stepan to be just a little bit more grounded . . . . I hope.

  22. Heave HO

    Might as well get it right now at the beginning… Stepan
    not Stephan…( drop the H)….accent on 2nd syllable.

    Very good observations and well thought out. In fact, just about all of the observations posted so far ( with a few notable exceptions) are well presented and viable points.
    And the reasons for the writers to have arrived at their conclusions is very well informative and justified. Doin’ us all proud bonies,,,, very proud.

    I just want to leave a final thought with you…these announcers at Buffalo called a very good game…exactly the way PLAY BY PLAY, is aired. Not endless introspective chit chat streams of conciousness, over trivia, and an occasion mention of what is going on………down on the ice level.

  23. take boyle out and stick dru on 4th line and have him play pk, and lots of minutes late in close games where we need some defense.

    ilb- i agree about AA. he has steadily gotten better and more confident and hes still got lots to work on. he got rocked by 2 sabres last night, while he was looking down i thought. my stream wasnt great so i couldnt tell but it kinda looks like he has to remember to keep his head up and be more like a cally. hitting guys first and if he does get hit high go out and get that bastage next time hes on the ice. like to see his physical game pick up. but hes faster, and more determined this year. hopefully he stays on teh 2nd line, because he loved playing 4th line last year and for a guy with his skill, he shouldnt be content with that kind of role. so far so good though with him. think the chemistry of the bottom 3 lines are great so far. maybe when dru comes back, they put him on the 1st! and maybe he’ll score! haha. seriously, would you rather have him there maybe earning his huge salary or ec there? has dru ever played top line with gabby yet since gabby has been here? it will at least keep the other 3 lines intact. either that or switch stepan with ec and dru on 3rd line.

  24. I think it’s a little early (& silly) to be pointing the finger at Lundqvist. He wasn’t spectacular, but goalies are paid to win & he must have enjoyed seeing the opposing goaltender getting “hung out to dry” by his defenseman & forwards who weren’t helping out.

    It was only one game, but perhaps speed & quickness will be on our side in 2010-11.

  25. fran- u really like th most annoying announcer ever over sam n joe??? i know joe kinda sucks, but sammy boy is great. at least when the other team scores, they dont get all depressed and try to call it as unbiased as they can. the buff announcers, the pitts announcers and beninati are the worst!

  26. Tough to say were Drury will fit in. He is among the best at penalty killing and still has a descent scoring touch. I am just not sure were Torts puts him.

    Come to think of it. Drury is just not a good center. He is more fit for wing because he doesn’t have good puck handling skills.

    God if Drury winds up pushing Stepan down I will be pissed.

  27. jpg- yep, and miller is supposed to be the best now right? and hank was better. bottom line, hank outplayed miller, if it was a closer game, i think hank buckles down and doesnt let in another goal. hank always plays better when the pressure is on.

  28. me too maven. i really think stepan has played himself onto the team and if anything dru will either play a limited role, or Ec comes out. thats the only thing i can see torts doing at this point. lets see what happens when step has a slump. i hope torts doesnt give up on him to easily.

  29. ilbzotenkopan2001 on

    Well, one thing we will all agree on, I’m sure: they’d better take the Fishsticks seriously tomorrow. It’s a wounded team, but they will come out flying, you can be sure of that. Those were the points we should’ve but didn’t get last year. Not enough

  30. Stepan’s message to Rangers management – the team is better with young, hungry, energetic players (like the ones they sent to Hartford). It’s the old, overpaid and unmotivated veterans who belong in Hartford, playing out the twilight of their undistinguised careers. You all know who I mean.

    Sather’s take on Stepan: he clearly showed he’s not ready for the NHL – he didn’t score on a breakaway, and he missed an open net at the end of the game. 2 or 3 years in Hartford and he may be ready to play in the NHL. Who took my cigar?

  31. ilbzotenkopan2001 on

    Btw, we didn’t talk much about our other newcomers, but Fedotenko quietly had a decent game. He was strong on the puck and finished +2 while playing 15+ minutes.

  32. Fran, thanks for both your points.

    The only way Stepan is sent down is if he goes through an extended period of poor play (not merely a scoring drought) and loses confidence. He shows enough maturity that he knows the goals will be tough to come by sometimes but there are other ways to contribute. He shows strong signs of being a complete player with the mindset of what it takes to be a pro athlete. I can see him getting an ‘A’ in two or three years.

    Good to see Dubi score. Anyone else think that maybe Torts learned some lessons from last year and is developing a more supportive and positive tone with his players? Could Avery’s play be indicative of being on the same page with his coach? Artie continues to develop confidence, slow and sure. Same with Boyle. Emminger will improve, let’s remember he only played in one (two?) preseason games and needs time to get in sync with the system and new teammates. We need his size and nastiness on our blue line.

  33. Is Tavares out? Isles are going to have to start raiding other teams farms pretty soon to get a healthy squad.

  34. I liked that when interviewed Stepan credited his linemates. He seems pretty mature.

    Marty looked like his reflexes were pretty slow on the Caps goals. Is this the year that he finally slips?

  35. I don’t care who the Fishsticks dress on Monday, if the Rangers don’t come out to play, they will lose 2 point which are sitting for them.

  36. Good afternoon, Carp!

    Had a pretty awesome time at the game! I still can’t believe Dubi scored twice! Didn’t notice the kiss til I saw it here, but I thought it was pretty sweet. Aw I love that lil man…

  37. Booooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooom!!

    Dubi is awesome! Stepan is awesomer!! Their kiss was awesomest!!

    The kiss sent the chills down my spine!! I love a lil teammate lovin’!

    Didnt see any part of the game after the conclusion of the first period.

  38. Joekuh - En Gaard!!!....for his 2 on 1? on

    Why all the hate on Eminger. Yes, he had a couple penalties, but i’d rather a D-man take a penalty for over agressiveness than making sure the ice wont break as he jabs with his stick for the puck. I thought he did fine. Sauer was solid. If anyone needs to sit/be traded, its Rosival.

  39. Czechthemout!!!! on

    Funny that all the anti dubi people are nowhere to be found today. Other than Stepan, Dubi was the most noticeable forward yesterday .

  40. Czechthemout!!!! on

    Because Eminger did not take smart penalties. One was a hit from behind.

    As for blowzy, I have never been fan of his. He always had poor hockey sense and was just soft as mush. Now I also believe he is slowing down physically . I think that he should be trade while there still might be a small market for him. Once that happens, Mcd needs to be brought up asap. To me,he was the most consistent damn in the preseason games.

  41. Doodie Machetto on

    I think that they should bounce EC from the top spot andput Drury there. Yes, he’s not good enough to be a first line center, bu I think he’s better than EC, and I don’t thin either Anisimov or Stepan should be moved from where they are right now.

  42. Czech, I’ll answer that bell. Dubi did play well yesterday. However, there have been times that he’s played well since he joined the club. The biggest knock has been his inconsistency and disappearing at times. If he can show an effort like he did last night game after game (e.g. Callahan) and provide results on a consistent basis (and I’m not saying he has to score every game) the naysayers will disappear. I don’t think he’s a first line player but he has the talent to be an important player. I can’t address the leadership questions but it was encouraging to see him give a rookie a big thumbs up. That’s the kind of behavior that helps make a group of individual players a close knit team.

  43. Doodie, it sounds like a logical move to me too. Except that if he logs in first time minutes, kills penalties and, perhaps takes some important d-zone face-offs, it’s asking for too much ice time.
    And yes, Anisimov should be a lock for second line. Stepan needs to be where he is, at least for now. Drury, btw, can also play right. But where? Good luck, Torts.

  44. 1. This time has not had this sort of depth in years. Why is that? Because they havent traded away youth. Knock Sather on his contracts, and deservedly so, but this time seems more like the Devils system than the Devils themselves! Young kids being allowed to develop, and nice draft picking leaving the time with homegrown players.

    2. Had to laugh re: rightsholders with regards to us paying for MSG. Reminds me of the old lady who goes to the Wal-Mart meeting with her one stock share in tow. Big companies care little for their shareholders. The only ones that really mean anything are the ones holding the bonds. And it clearly shows. Aside: Are they worried about Torts having an outburst?

    3. LGR! that is all!

  45. “stepan is like stiffler now. with his hot mom. stiff-on!! or stepler!!”

    I’ll tell you, if Step-On’s mom and sister come to more games, I’ll be getting a “stiff-on”

    But, anyway, I think I know who’s jersey I’ll be getting real soon!! Maybe a third jersey Step-On? Or away.

    I can’t wait for tomorrow’s game, I’m so pumped! Just play Gilroy the next game!

    As for Dreary. I think it’s pretty simple. Scratch EC, promote Step-On, and pop Dreary between Aves and Tenko. Enough said. I’d rather have Flavah than Pee Wee, for sure.

    Anybody see Tyler Seguin score his first goal earlier? Pretty nice backhand on his way down on breakaway. Horton already has three goals in two games. Bruins won 3-0 over the Yotes, with Thomas getting the shutout.

  46. I’d love to eventually see an All-American line of Dubi-Stepan-Callahan!! Move Ansimov to the top line! BOOOM! thats a darn good top 6 of forwards!

  47. Actually, Gilroy *will* be scratched tomorrow. Poor kid. I figured he’d at least get a shot.

    @TSNBobMcKenzie: Rangers tell me pronunciation on Stepan is as follows: STEP-on. Emphasis on first syllable. Emphasis on hat trick. Nice debut.

    For the record, I started Step-On! Fuggin McKenzie!

  48. Tank The Season on

    I have a feeling we will deal a forward for a defenseman once Drury comes back- maybe Christensen.

  49. What a fun game to watch. Goal scoring, body checking and a real sense of “team”.

    Unfortunately I am reminded of the hot starts of the past few years and therefor I can’t get too excited until this kind of play continues for at least 20 games.

    Do any of the preseason Avery haters want to stand up and be counted? This guy, when playing right, is pure heart and talent. He is by far one of the leagues most underrated players. He can skate, shoot, pass, hit and fight. All around solid player who gets recognized for all the wrong reasons. Avery made two absolute beatiful passes lastnight. Spin-o-Rama no look dishes that were as good as any ofthe top passers in the league.

    Bring on the isles!!!!

  50. Ew Orr!

    It’s true that Dubinsky’s not the most consistent, but I’d argue that he provides the “intangibles”… Like picking his nose, calling Crosby a baby, and congratulating his teammates with smooches. Who else would step up like that? Frolov? AA? Puh-lease.

  51. MickeyM is pumped for tonight on

    The win feels just as good today as it did last night, although I’m wary of getting too happy after what happened last year.

    Tough decision when Drury comes back. Maybe he goes in for Boogaard. Plays either center or wing on the 4th line, takes all the big faceoffs- they were dreadful on them last night, it’s one place where Drury will be welcome- and goes back to the top PK unit with Cally. A $7 million spare part, yessh.

  52. Anybody see this in the Devils game last night?? LeBlond [the goon] tries to sucker punch Carlson [rookie d-man] from behind, and fight him


    I sincerely hope someone ends LeBlonds career with either a viscous open ice hit, or a viscous knock out punch. This guy avoided fighting Booger the entire pre-season, and tried to go after one of our youngsters, and he does the same. What a scumbag. I can’t wait till we play the Devils!


  53. Orr – that video cuts out just before Chico starts what presumably must’ve been a five-minute whiny rant about players having to stick up for themselves against the honourable Devils tough guys.

    Automatic suspension for PL3 and fine for MacLean, right? Unless Lou’s big sulk against the league is enough to convince Colin Campbell of the “special circumstances” for starting that incident in a blowout.

  54. Orr hopefully the hockey gods have paid the Devils back with Volchenkov’s broken schnoz and a temporary injury situation with Rolston that won’t require a LTIR spot but he won’t be able to play either.

  55. right. and it is great to see that the debbies and fatso have become real chokers who blow leads and lose games they are ahead in, like they did in the playoffs vs the Canes a couple years ago

  56. Heave Ho 10:06 Good Post Spot on “Finally! I think our first line will score more as our second and third lines will force teams to spread their defense over three lines and not focus so much on Gaborik.” The best balance we’ve started with in years. Carp You’re so right. Stepan does make this team better. It’s contagious.

  57. actually, there were a few others since Murdoch. Steven King. Daniel Goneau.

    But Stepan is much more legit as an overall player than either of those.

    Coach, you can’t get rid of Drury, and the coach loves him and most of the players (most, I said) think he’s a great captain. so, you know …

    Good afternoon, Sally, 26!

  58. Grabachev

    I like ANY mike people who do play by play. The guys we have don’t.

    It’s just that simple…I have no special affection for or animus against them… i just like to have them do what they’re there for in the first place.
    We can go to NHL center ice and listen to Hradek if we want inside commentary, anecdotes, and discussion, but once the first face off starts I look for PLAY BY PLAY from the Mike men. Not the verbal Blogster; Bonehead chit chat that we have here.
    That’s all.

  59. yeah, but when you are doing TV, the play by play should be done with that in mind. you can see what is going on, and don’t need the million word droning on and phonebook reading like that idiot Emrick does.

  60. 4generations 4 cups on

    So who gets punished when our old guys return? Christensen? Who else is spare parts? Honestly?

  61. Good afternoon all! Dang I am ticked I miss that kiss?! is it on YouTube yet???

    When was the last time a rookie caused so much excitement? My vote goes to Mr. Leetchy.

    Drury should go on wing, 4th line. Does he make too much money for that, since he’s paid to a first line center? hell ya, but he gets the job done there, not at the top. And Steppers deserves every chance he can get. And I love him and Aves together, but that’s just me :)

    Who the heck puts the second game of the season on during a time when nobody can watch!!!!! Can’t wait til Friday!!

  62. You’re right, Messiah. Or maybe Dublowsky instead of purchasing an engagement ring, he actually bought a purity ring, like the Jonas Brothers.

    After Power Rangers, Glee, Kissing during games, that would not come as a shock to me!

  63. I was going to say that Id step aside in the sweepstakes for Dubi for the pretty lady, Sally.

    But since she is not interested, Im throwing my hat into the ring…

    Brandon Nose Picker Hawaiian Dubisnky, will you marry me?

  64. MickeyM is pumped for tonight on

    Hawaiian, CR? Where does that come from? LOL.

    And I am totally in if Dubi is free, too. :)

  65. I think trautwig said it was his sister and mom on hockey night live. Not positive that’s where I heard it but I’m positive I did hear it.

    And I am positive that those were two beautiful women!!

  66. MickeyM is pumped for tonight on

    Alaska, Hawaii- same dif. Right?

    Joke, I meant to ask if you had any issues with all the rain last week. My family was telling me they had 7 inches in one day.

  67. leethalloffame on

    Roszival must go – he’s horrible as ever. Trade him for a replacement net and bring up McDonagh.

  68. so many posts to read! anyway…

    comparing Dubi to Callahan and asking him to be as consistent is pretty silly thing to do… Cally is Cally and Dubi is Dubi

    Lundqvist hasn’t had a single consistent year…and this is his 5th season but for some reason he’s the King and is untouchable… last night they showed his career stats and i was a bit shocked/surprised…the KING is only 7 games over .500! pretty average if you ask me.

    Dubinsky is the future of this team and a pretty solid forward… nobody is consistent… not even the KING or Gaborik, who btw, was invisible last night along with his first line teammates.

    P.S. I thought Eminger played very well.

  69. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    I love how the Lundqvist bashing starts already. Tsn ranked him the 2nd best goalie in the nhl, but the expert Russian analysts here know so much more than those silly Canadians.

  70. True Fans

    tsn also ranked Hugh Jessiman 12 best forward…im just saying

    i wasn’t bashing Hank i was just giving an example of how some players go under radar because of some fans made-up status and other players never get a second chance.

  71. MAO_Del_Zedong on

    I gather from everyone’s posts that Glee is some sort of television show…my guess is some kind of zach efron style singing thingy…but i have no clue what it really is, and would never have heard of it if it weren’t for this blog..rofl.

  72. Lundqvist career 2.33 GAA .918 SV%

    Ryan Miller? 2.57 .914
    Fatso? 2.22 .914
    Luongo? 2.57 .919

    just saying ;)

  73. Glee is an excellent TV show. All the characters are excellent, led most notably by Jane Lynch. Im a big fan of the gay kid.

    And I am a fan of iCarly. Ive seen about 15 episodes here and there over the past couple years. :hides head:

  74. those MSG asshats… before the game they showed Hank and his stats showing 117 wind and 110 losses which kind of made me think, wtf? Only 7 games above 500?? So, i just checked his career numbers and it actually 177 W 110 L

    so… you know what…i apologize and take my words back… Hank is 67 games above 500 not 7…BUT, he is still inconsistent.

  75. CCCP – Shame on you. You should have realized that Hank is the only goalie to have 5 30+ win seasons to begin his career. :grrrrrr: :-)

  76. iCarly?!?!?!

    Wha, wha, whaaat?!?!

    Wizards Of Waverly Place, or Victorious I could understand, because Selena Gomez and Victoria Justice are two pretty cute 18 year old chicks.

    I’ve only seen those shows because I babysit here and there! I’ve seen them all. Drake & Josh, Hannah Montana, Big Time Rush, etc. Not a good time!

  77. I like Selena Gomez! She is so bleeping hot, it’s unbelievable! Never heard of those 2 shows. Ive also seen about 15 episodes of Drake and Josh over the past 2 years, and I enjoy that show as well. I believe the sister in Drake and Josh is iCarly.

    This one will get ya! I LOVE the new CW show HellKats!!!

    Orr – What are your favorite 5 obscure actresses? I dont mean widely known actresses.

  78. I don’t watch that show, CR, but that chick with the curly blonde hair is pretty fuggin hot. She has a twin sister, but I like her better. Maybe it’s the curls, I don’t know.

    As for obscure actresses, I don’t know. I don’t even know who my favorite actresses are. I base everything off of who I’m physically attracted to at the time. It all changes.

    Megan Fox was my it girl, but she married that floppy penis carcillo eater, Brian Austin Green. Right now, I’m into Blake Lively. Blonde babe, nice long stems on her. A lot of nice things on her.

  79. Orr – LOL! The HellKats actress I like is the brunette! I like the blonde, dont get me wrong, but she looks kinda trashy.

    Here are my 5:
    Amy Acker – Angel
    Melora Hardin – Monk
    julie benz – Angel
    Natalie Zea – Dirty Sexy Money, Hung, Justified
    Jenny Wade – Good Guys

    Emmanuelle Chriqui is extremely famous, but I LOVE her!

  80. MickeyM is pumped for tonight on

    Higgins- ha! Stepan had returned the glory to the number 21 that Higgins besmirched last season.

  81. ZzZz NYR ZzZz " Rangers rule !!!" ...says Greg L. on

    What a game , yeah Hank blew a few shots( hence the un- elite status ).

    We are not going to analize this thing properly untill we start losing. Losing brings out the uglyness and it shows who the real winners are. This one game means nothing but its a start . Its 2pts and last ive heard 2pts in October is as valuable as 2pts near the end of the season. I say we “bank” these 2pts and move onto the azzlanders .We will roll over teams without looking back..Mount win after win untill we clinch that playoff birth. This year we mean bizness!!!

  82. CCCP – It’s not your fault. As you put it, it’s the MSG asshats! I saw that same stat graphic last night and was quite perturbed by it! :)

  83. :accepts Greg’s big dubinsky kiss with great appreciation:

    We’ll be seeing many more results this season as we saw last night! I guarantee it!

  84. Blue Seat Horror on

    Sorry if this has been observed. I just got off a 32-hour shift and only now had a chance to watch the game.

    I think Stepan purposely missed the empty netter because he was afraid of what Dubinsky might do to him if he scored a fourth goal.

  85. Mickeym,

    no problems as far as flooding or anything, more just the irritance of getting to your work desk soaked for days on end. Past few days have been really nice.

  86. wicky (Our D is still SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    I’m more of a milla jovovich guy.

    Stepan needs to stay right where he is (on the big club and centre of the 3rd line). No reason to burn him out with first line minutes and keeping the 3rd line as is will hopefully get torts to roll lines more equally.

    When dru comes back, he needs to take EC’s spot and EC needs to sit (no offence to him), but there really isn’t another forward at this point I would take out of the line up or switch positions with.

    Maybe there is a trade on the horizon that might clear up some forward log jam, but who do you trade out of the top 12? Dubi? Boyle? EC? And what comes back? D man? Just curious here, not predicting anything.

    Dubi looked decent, but he needs to maintain (which others have pointed out already) his level of play. He seems to disappear a lot in games against more physical teams, which seems to me with his size, should be just the opposite and he should thrive in those (richards scraps aside).

    I didn’t find the game that entertaining, kind of boring really. I’d rather see a 2 to 1 game with the boards rattling the whole game and some great post whistle stuff than a 5 on 5 skills competition. That being said I would be happy as hell with 81 more games just like that one…..LGR!!!!!!

  87. True Fans Bleed RW&B on

    “What a game , yeah Hank blew a few shots( hence the un- elite status ).”

    This nonsense again from the RR analysts peanut gallery?!

    You act like the “best goaltender in all of the world” (a quote from Melrose describing Brodeur and the Devils for ESPN’s preview of NHL teams) has never let in bad shots?

  88. wicky (Our D is still SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    galleria is in brentwood. Go to the Chase if you can, it’s pretty cool. So is the one in frontenac at the mall there.

  89. Tank The Season on

    Ron Darling was like the most famous Hawaiian baseball player.

    Not sure if any Hawaiians have been in the NHL.

  90. wicky (Our D is still SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    Enough with the bring up McD next talk, he was not as good as sauer or vtank in the preseason, so if someone comes up it should be vtank….to further this a snippet from hockey future on the whalepack and their first game…….

    “On defense, rookie Ryan McDonagh was paired with the more experienced Jared Nightingale, while veteran Wade Redden was paired with rookie Tomas Kundratek. The third pairing had second year blueliner Nigel Williams together with Pavel Valentenko. Valentenko made some fabulous hits, and blocked several shots. Williams, who is clearly unhappy with being in Hartford, made some good plays tonight too. Redden looked like he was playing hard, worked along the boards and threw a hit. McDonagh looked a little overwhelmed at times and his play tonight made it clear that the decision to have McDonagh develop further at the AHL level was a good one.”

    Vtank deserved to be up here more than sauer or McD, but the waiver situation made the decision. If anyone comes up, it should be vtank and what he brings is something we still are seriously lacking on the blueline.

  91. wicky (Our D is still SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    It drives me nuts when “ranger fans” want a certain guy because he seems to be the most popular or most talked about and want him in the line up for that reason instead of a player who provides something the team actually needs!!


  92. Blue Seat Horror on

    wicky, Redden has at least 1 point in every Wolfwhale game so far this season. Maybe they should bring him up to be a PP quarterback…heh, heh.

  93. Blue Seat Horror on

    Does Higgins officially get “journeyman” status now that he’s been on 3 teams in 2 years?

  94. By the way, the first goal by Leopold was a deflection off Girardi or whoever he was covering. And also if you still have the game in DVR, look what Henrik did after Bufallo scored the third goal. He kept the team in almost every game long enough last year for them to win, but they just couldn’t score enough.

  95. wicky (Our D is still SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    blue seat
    if they sent rozy down, id take redden back…..other than that, NO THANKS!!!!!

  96. wicky (Our D is still SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    Not that i want either one, but if I had to take one of the two, it would be redden.

  97. Blue Seat Horror on

    Definition of best goalies = making the right saves to get the win. Don’t care about GAA.

    Lundqvist made some really important saves last night. And he and the Rangers team defense never let Beefalo get anywhere near the lead. I saw alot of things I liked. Most importantly, compete level. Now let’s see some consistency for the next 98-110 games!

    No complaints here.

  98. I agree, Wick. I hate it when people want a specific player to play when he doesn’t deserve the spot over someone who does!!!

    Defense is looking pretty good for the future though.

    Lol @ Williams being unhappy that he’s in Hartford. Pff, get used to it sucker! He’s going to have to outplay a few solid d-men to get that call up.

  99. Blue Seat Horror on

    wicky, hope my humor came across. I’d much rather see Valentenko up than Redden.

    The Rangers have enough offense at the D position with the big club.

    By the way, I like that every time he got the puck at the point Girardi shot it.

    I’d be terrified if I heard the Rangers were trying to pass Redden through reentry waivers. Wouldn’t sleep that night. The cap owes him nothing now. If he’s claimed they’ll be paying for him for years…and at 3 mil it’s still too much cap hit for Redden. No thanks. Let him enjoy being a mentor in the minors.

  100. wicky (Our D is still SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    yep on the future. Top six of staal, mdz, vtank, pashinin, mcilrath, and mcdonut just about brings a tear to my eye.

    it was funny. I agree about redden, I hope he NEVER gets put on re entry, just too frakking dangerous!!

  101. wicky – Frak you, you frakkin’ bastage! ;)

    I cant believe Redden’s even playing in Hartford. I’m stunned; I just thought he’d sit out, fake injury, or something. How embarrassing for him! We better not put him on re-entry waivers.

  102. Everyone got in my face around here when I jokingly called Stepan a “Homo” for saying Glee is his favorite show and what happens?????

    Him and Dubi are “Going Steady” and kissing each other on the ice for the whole world to see …

    Told Ya So

  103. I doubt Step-On truly wanted that kiss.

    I guess Dublowsky didn’t want to kiss MZA during the pre-season. Maybe he had a bad stench. It was MZA, right? I remember people complaining that Dublowsky wasn’t talking to someone in the penalty box.

  104. I think it was Weise in the penalty box – let’s face it … Weise is no were near as pretty as Stepan

  105. Czechthemout!!!! on


    Do you ever watch the games or do you just post your pre conceived notions about certain players?

    I read a lot of your posts during the preseason and from the moment the games started, you were saying that Mcd was not that good during the games. Why do rely on what someone may have written about the game. I actually saw the game and Mcd had to play with an outright scrub in nightingale. He had to cover for that foods many mistakes. Mcd was by any objective measure one of the steadiest dmen during the preseason. And if we use your criteria, all the beat writers thought so. In fact,they were all surprised he was sent down as was I. Vtank who I happen to like a lot was not as good. He ran around a little too much to try and deliver a big hit. I think he is a can’ t miss prospect as well. In fact both vtank and Mcd far outplayed Crapinger and both should have made the team over him.

    The fact that he has to play with garbage like Nightingale instead of Redden or Vtank is further proof that he should not be there. Only an idiot coach like Gernander would have him paired with someone as incompetent as Nightingale. But why should I expect anything more from a Tom Renney disciple ?

  106. Czechthemout!!!! on

    This fool Genander had Grachev play center in most of the games in Hartford last season. He is an idiot who should not be allowed anywhere near our top prospects. This dope needs to be canned asap and they need to bring in another coach who can mirror Tort’s system not someone who coaches Renney’ faile done.

  107. wicky (Our D is still SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    I saw every one of the preseason games and I am giving my opinion. I really don’t care what anyone writes and I form my own opinion……If I had one that mirrored what reporters wrote, I would be all over mcdonut. I Do not think mcdonut or sauer played better than vtank. Is vtank a bit raw? Yes, but he still played more physical than either one of the other guys (mcdonut and sauer). Would I rather see any of the 3 over rozy or redden, yes.

    On a team that lacks physical D, vtank fills that need the best. Therefore, I think he should be the guy up here not sauer or mcdonut. But, torts even said that the fact vtank and mcd did not have to go through waivers made a difference in the decision.

    I am sorry he played more physical than mcd and it obviously bothers you on a very deep level that he did.

  108. Czechthemout!!!! on


    I like the way vtank played. He is a keeper! But he did not outplay Mcd. Sorry. But both did definately out play Rozi and Crapinger.

  109. wicky (Our D is still SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on


    Guess we will have to agree to disagree because physically, vtank outplayed mcd in a big way IMHO!

  110. It was wiese is the box with dubinsky.

    Tomorrow night on NHL network 6pm is a show called the offseason: Michael del zotto

    I’ll try to put that reminder up sometime tomorrow. But if somebody can put it on the “it’s go time” thread, that would be cool.

  111. wicky (Our D is still SOFT and give Prust an A!!!!) on

    Guess that Happy Thanksgiving is actually for today now!!!

    Good night assens!!

  112. I wish I lived in Canada for October. Then I’d come back in November. Two Thanksgivings!!

    Can’t wait for the game! Hopefully no Tavares. I hope DiPietro plays, cause it’s been a while since we’ve made him look pathetic.

  113. MickeyM is pumped for tonight on

    Joke, good to hear. Being a little wet is better than a flooded basement. :)

    wicky, ahh, thanks for correcting me on that. I’ll have to give those places a look next time. Galleria was closer to my friend, who lives in South City, so that is why we went there.

    Night all!

  114. I thoroughly enjoyed the game. It wasn’t perfect, but it was great. Two things:

    1)To the people who want to see Stepan promoted to the first line: I think it’s a mistake. We’ll see after a few more games, but don’t you think the reason he did so well is partly because of the line he’s on? I don’t want to ruin that chemistry.

    2)Don’t know if anyone else saw it, but on one play, Buffalo iced the puck and Roszival had to race a Sabre player to touch up for the icing. Rozy actually stopped skating and let the Sabre player go in and negate the icing! He should have gotten there first! He should be fired for that! I was furious.

  115. I can’t read 100+ posts to see if this has been mentioned already, but give Sather and Torts credit:

    1. They said they were getting younger, and it appears that they are (despite signing Fedotenko and keeping Rozy).
    2. They needed to get secondary scoring, and they put together a really nice 3rd line.
    3. Being patient with MacDoughnah.

    If I have any real criticism, it is that Rozy needs to go. I think it was the Roy goal where he just flailed at the puck with his stick while it was bouncing in the crease. A lot of people are posting about how MacD got a raw deal and should be with the big club. I would agree, but I believe that the NYR may be too young on the backline with MacD in the mix.
    I think I see a new Torts behind the bench. Since his surgery, and with the influx of young guys (i.e. guys he can call his own) I belive we are seeing a transformation for the better.
    I am excited.

  116. Fran – i agree with you about having an unwavering belief that a player is no good – Roszi is mine too. Having said that he did nothing to change my mind against BUF, and if Eminger hadnt been so bad too i would have been screaming at the TV to trade him, in the end though the Stepan show was keeping me thinking positively.

    I would much rather we rid ourselves of Eminger and Roszi sometime this season and get McD and V’tank in there and rotate them with Sauer and Gilroy for those bottom 3 spots.
    Lets not forget we will have Pashnin in camp next year and he was hitting people for fun at prospects camp so the future looks great for our D and there is some more physicality on the way.

  117. if a guy has a good or great game, or even week, i dont get why people need to call out certain people (not by name just in general) for what they have to say about them now? youre just askin for it when they do have a crappy game or slump. im not defending them, thats their opinion on them. i always give players a fresh start every season, even redden last year. “where are all the avery haters”?? do you think any ranger fan hates avery? maybe like duby theyd like to see some consistency before they get all mushy on them. and avery is coming off one bad season, so i would think to stay on the team, he would have to play the way he did. nothing surprising there.

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