It’s hard not to review the whole three games in four nights as one, because it really was a fabulous long weekend for your boys.
Here’s my story from The Journal News and LoHud.com today.
Small piece of news this morning: Jeremy Williams was returned to Hartford. I guess that’s what happens when you come up and get uniform No. 86. Get it?
1) I see everybody’s jumping on the Michal Rozsival bandwagon. I say, good, to that. The guy’s improved, worked hard, and they’d miss him if he wasn’t here.
2) The Norris Trophy winner for the weekend, though, was Girardi. Went face to face with a fired-up Kovalchuk almost every shift. He’s another guy I wasn’t sure about whom I’m now starting to think might turn out to be a good one.
3) In all the feel-good, the best news is probably that the goaltender is finding his game again, and that the backup goaltender might turn out to be one of those really important signings that gets overlooked.
4) I like Sean Avery’s game so far this season. I really do. He’s the old Avery, which means he’s a factor every night. A positive factor, that is.
5) Forgot to tell you this last night. Some young radio reporter sticks a microphone in Avery’s face and asks, “So did you have any choice words for Brodeur?” To which Avery scowled and said, “That’s a really stupid question.”
6) Tomorrow I’m going to tell you more about why I like this team and its direction. But I’ll tell you right now that one of them is the coach. He’s been a jackwagon at times, and in previous seasons he hasn’t been the accountability-holder he promised to be. But this year he’s gentler in dealing with people outside of his lockerroom, which is a good thing. But mostly, I really believe that he is serious about the direction, and the plan, to get young players involved, to teach and not overwhelm them, to be positive and nurturing when they need it, and to live with their mistakes. And let’s face it, if he couldn’t do that, then why keep him here with this team as it is now?
7) So next time they lose three in a row—and they will—let’s not all jump off the cart and write off the season, OK? Yeah, right.
AP Photo above.
Reminder, on MSG Plus’s “The Game 365: New York Rangers” tonight at 11, Fran Healy discusses hockey and living in New York with the Rangers’ three young core guys—Marc Staal, Ryan Callahan and Brandon Dubinsky.