There was a lot of bad about that game last night, but bad/unsightly/grotesque victories beat the living daylights out of good/artistic/glamorous losses. Right? I mean, a year ago, they’d have lost this game 5-2.
1) Sean Avery=difference maker for one of the few times this season, but a lot like he was at the end of the 2008-09 season. I’m pretty sure after the last Gaborik goal he doubled back to have some Avery-like words with the Islanders bench, and probably Martin who challenged him just before the GWG, and that’s why the officials were talking to him on the bench. But we all know Avery can play this way if given the opportunity. And we also don’t know why he can’t always play this way.
2) Marian Gaborik. Every line on which he played was the first line. I liked him with Anisimov and Frolov once or twice when Boogaard was in the box. I really liked him with Dubinsky and Callahan on the PP (wonder if those three could work as a legit first line one of these days).
3) You almost feel sorry for guys like Gillies when they have to fight Boogaard. Man, he’s scary. Just so big and mean. Just a mismatch.
4) What are the odds that both Konopka and Prust get in the boxscore and it isn’t for fighting each other, but for scoring a goal apiece. Prust was terrific again, but there has to be some major concern about that left arm/shoulder. He shouldn’t fight until it’s better, but I’m sure he will if needed. And for Konopka, how’d you like a guy like that on your team. Like Prust, he’ll fight every night, and he can kill penalties, and he’s unbelievable on faceoffs.
5) Faceoffs are becoming a huge problem for the Rangers, aren’t they? And shots that miss the net.
6) I thought Del Zotto was quietly fabulous. Thought Rozsival was pretty good, too.
7) Your shutdown defense pair sure had some non-shutdown moments. The first Islanders goal, they were both awful. The second Islanders goal, they were worse. I know it was Dubinsky who failed to pick up the guy who scored, but the right defenseman (Girardi) was up by the blue line, and the left D (Staal) was along the defensive right wall. Neither was in the picture during the replay, and that’s never good. And right after the Gaborik goal, those two gave up a breakaway off a center-ice faceoff. That should never happen.
8) Brian Leetch is really getting good in the studio.
9) Let’s do this again tonight.
AP Photo above.