1) I get all of this: That wins are wins are wins. That the bottom line is, did you get the two points? That there’s no such thing as a perfect game. That sometimes you have to win when you don’t play your best. That it says something when you gut it out and find a way. But I think the Rangers lately are playing too many incomplete games and getting away with them, and that often leads into a losing streak. Just sayin’.
2) This whole Michael Del Zotto thing is a dangerous game. John Tortorella has handed out tough love to skilled players in the past, and he knows what he’s doing. You’d have to grant him the benefit of the doubt on that. And maybe a little trip to Hartford would have long-term benefit. Or maybe it won’t come to that, and instead these healthy scratches will be enough. But I think there’s a risk that Del Zotto will become too shell-shocked, that he will be afraid to be aggressive and to use his skills and weapons. And I think back to Brian Leetch, who went from being an all-star to an all-timer when Mark Messier arrived and he learned to not worry about making a big mistake once in a while. And I also think that other than, perhaps, Marc Staal, no Rangers defenseman has more potential to be a special player than Del Zotto.
3) I know I ride Staal sometimes. I thought he was fabulous in this game. His partner, Dan Girardi, too.
4) In every game there are good bounces and bad bounces, good breaks and bad breaks. Well, that’s true, but the Rangers got a great bounce and a great break when Jason Arnott had that enormous chance late in the third and shot it over the crossbar and into the screen.
5) Henrik Lundqvist was terrific, and he needed to be that, and he really does rule the Devils.
6) Brian Boyle=Monster.
7) The Devils are a mess, and you already knew that. But when you have a team that scores exactly one goal every game, how is it a good thing to bring in a Jacques Lemaire to coach it, a guy who believes in backing off and squelching offense? Was the thinking that, “well, we can’t score two, so we’d better try to win 1-0?”
8) Anybody glad it was Lou Lamoriello, and not Glen Sather, who went after Ilya Kovalchuk?
9) Wonder if we’re going to see Dubinsky-Stepan-Gaborik for a while now. And if Erik Christensen’s injury means another dose of Dale Weise.
AP photo, above.