Tortorella post-practice


Don’t have a lot of interviews for you today because A) I spent a lot of time working on a story I’m doing next week and B) What else is there for the boys to say after that Montreal game and a day off?

For the same reason, John Tortorella’s post-practice press conference was short, because there weren’t many questions to be asked.

Brad Richards (maintenance day) and Brandon Dubinsky (sick) were not on the ice.

I had a chance to speak briefly with Michael Sauer about the bizarre non-icing play in Montreal. He was shocked. He said he never heard any officials tell him to move the puck, only heard Martin Biron tell him to not touch it, and was surprised that the defending team could be punished on a play like that when the team with the power play chooses to not pressure the play at all.

I told him that, supposed it hadn’t been an icing. Suppose he was just back playing the puck, the the team on the power play sat back? Why wouldn’t he just sit back there and kill the clock? Same thing, right? But Sauer agreed with me, and said he thought of this at the time, that the officials were a little touchy after the whole Philadelphia-Tampa Bay 1-3-1 incident a couple of weeks back.

Anyway, here’s John Tortorella:


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  1. Carp – interesting talking to Sauer-Pauer about that icing/non-icing debacle. What a weird call. That and the embellishment I really hadn’t seen before. I guess you see something new (or two somethings) everyday.

  2. The NHL shouldn’t have a face. It should have many faces and many games and many personalities just like every other sport.

  3. Mister Delaware on

    Neil Smith thinks Crosby would look really good in Rangers blue a couple of years and headshots from now.

  4. Fashion Forward got 3x as much TOI as Bel Biv Deveaux and I would say Bel Biv Deveaux had more impact on the game.

  5. I understand, as Rangers fans, we are programmed to hate Sid the Kid and I would say that in his first few years he deserved some of the knocks (whiner, diver, overhyped). But, the truth is the NHL needs a healthy Sid the Kid. He is good for business and has become the best player in the sport. That OT Gold Medal Goal vs. Miller in that pressure a spot actually jumped him above Gretzky in that even THE GREAT ONE never had that important a moment. So, while it’s annoying that his return is getting this attention, as a hockey fan first, I can’t fault it and realize it’s a good thing.

  6. I make fun of Cindy Crosby just like everybody else. I will also be glued to my television tonight watching his possibly triumphant return.

  7. *James G* November 21st, 2011 at 1:17 pm

    “I’m not going to let Sid Crosby’s return ruin my fantasy hockey week”


    Me neither James – he’s on my team. So quite the contrary

  8. Mister Delaware on

    “I would say that in his first few years he deserved some of the knocks …”

    First few years includes about a month before he got hurt, right? Because that was the Callahan slewfoot and that’s why Rangers fans (atleast the ones I know) have a special ire, beyond the simple “this kid is a whiny douche”, for Sid.

    (Granted, he’s definitely good for the sport. Without villains, there are no heroes.)

  9. Manny
    if you have a chance to see the replay of
    Sauer Incident
    check out the linesman’s face
    standing next to him.

    he was waiting for Sauer to touch the puck
    but wasn’t rushing and seemed irritated
    when the whistle was blown by some other on-ice official

  10. Why does the league need him? The Penguins need him. That’s who needs him. Do you think, when the Penguins come to MSG, the Rangers fans would be disappointed if he didn’t play? Or would they be glad he didn’t play? I know that when Mario was announced as a scratch all those years, the place would cheer.

    … ps, I had my longest conversation ever with Avery today. Wasn’t very long. But we did chat. Maybe I should do a feature about him later this season.

    And maybe we should start discussing him again. Since the traffic hasn’t been up to standards lately.

  11. The only reason I’ll watch tonight is my curiosity about how the refs are going to coddle him, and which Islander is going to have the onions to actually touch him. If any.

    I’ll say this, God help the next guy who hits him hard, especially if Skidney gets hurt.

  12. Carp – You don’t think Crosby brings in the casual fan? Or advertisers? I’d like to think the NHL sells itself but I really don’t think that is true. Stars sell the sport, no?

  13. Really, jpg? That’s pretty interseting.

    Carp – see above. I brought up Sean Avery (or as I call him “fashion forward”) and his apparent lack of TOI in Montreal. I will expand the point to drive up traffic.

    Although the entire team was invisible, except poor Marty Biron, Fashion Forward had nearly 10 minutes of time and I only looked it up because I thought he had about 3 minutes. Thus, he was invisibler (new word, Latona) than other players and we see the opposite of Sean Avery’s (Fashion Forward’s) Ceiling known as his floor. An ineffective, sloppy game in which he failed to “energize” the team, draw any penalties, score any goals or fight anyone.

  14. Crosby is the face of the NHL. The league needs great players, and Crosby is the best and most exciting player the NHL has to offer. Crosby drives up road attendance Similarly, the Rangers haven’t been a marquee team in years, and we still have one of the highest road attendances, if not the highest, in the league.

  15. Mister Delaware on

    He’s the kind of guy you want playing every game except for the ones against your team.

  16. You can thank “New York” for that attendance. Huge city, full of successful people that spread out all over the world. Go New Yorkers. It’s the same with all New York teams.

  17. Carp – The officiating aspect is interesting. I think you treat him like everyone else and if he gets hit hard and gets hurt again, it’s up to Shanny to show his real credibility. He’s tried to maintain that they want physicality without the headshots and that sometimes injuries will happen, let’s see if Sid gets hit hard cleanly and leaves ice how much closer we get to the No Hit League.

  18. Manny – Good point about that. Like Wednesday night in Florida when it will be all NYR fans. I know my parents and their neighbors all former NYers are going.

  19. Disappointed in you Carp. First, being short sighted regarding Crosby’s value to the NHL and then questioning the integrity of the referees. Tisk, tisk…

    Manny, similarly, Crosby drives up road attendance around the league because hockey fans want to see him play, just as hockey and Rangers fans want to see the Rangers play.

  20. You know what though? It just made me realize…that is why these teams can be horrible for so long. Attendance at away games. right? Those people go to the stores and buy apparel to represent and then the Knicks show up and get blown out and Dolan MAKES money on the whole thing. Shame.

  21. That Carp/Avery convo must have went something like this….

    Carp: I had to watch some Seinfeld before I went to sleep last night. It had me in stitches. You ever watch Seinfeld, -God- Sean?

    Avery: I’ve seen it before. Jerry needs a stylist, cause his look is just all wrong. Don’t even get me started on Kramer’s hair.

    Carp: I have to go….

  22. True Blue Mike on

    Carp, or anyone else? Do you know where i can find a video of the Sauer/icing/penalty incident from Saturday’s night game? I missed it and need to see this.

  23. Maybe cause I have been on the other side of this issue… I’d like to see NHL promote more individual stars like Patrick Kane (when he’s not punching cabbies) or Tim Thomas (love that discover commercial). Heck, they should love and play up that guys like Sheldon Souray are dating Kelly Kelly from the WWE and Brad Richards is dating Olivia Munn. Sometimes, the best part of the NHL (the modest, humble nature of the Canadian farm boys and small town Americans) plays against the League and is why an Avery gets the attention he does when he stands out in a timid crowd.

  24. I always thought Nick Lidstrom got passed over for greatest in the game these days.

    He has more Cups than Crosby, the Olympic gold medal, a very extensive collection of Norris Trophies and any decline in his play has been at such a gradual rate that it will be hard to say that he’s no longer able to play in the league whenever he decides to retire.

  25. That’s an apt point there Hwirth (I feel like I am agreeing with you too much lately). Those things really could help. Henrik’s hair is a valuable piece of the NHL. They should promote that. They should get these guys out there in suits doing stuff and attending events. You’re right that it’s the Page Sixes and the Gossip Columns that drive interest in the average folks. We need more reality shows about hockey players.

  26. CTB – Totally agree on Lidstrom. He’s always been too quiet and perfect. He is everything you’d want in a hockey player. Tough, smart, offensive, team player, leader, clutch, great skater etc.

    If he was from Windsor, Ontario and not Sweden wonder how much more he’d be promoted for being one of the best players we’ve ever seen during our generation.

  27. Mister Delaware on

    Sean Avery leads the Rangers in goals per 60 minutes by almost a full goal (2.54 to Gaborik’s 1.60). He should be double shifting.

  28. Manny – I’m not saying they have to act like NFL WR’s either. But, the NHL should use the fact that they are good guys to get them out in the public. Companies should want NHL players as their spokespeople because they will not embarrass you as a company.

  29. Orr – It is fact. Part of it is the accent and language issues but it’s always a good ole boys network that does protect that Canada is the home of hockey and not Russia or Sweden etc.

  30. I’ve no doubt Crosby attracts the corporate dollar and the casual fan to the league.

    I just doubt it’s anywhere near as much as the disproportionate level of coverage would suggest. And for a league where I suspect a significant majority of fans are both more tribal and arguably more hardcore than other North American sports, the promotion of “the face of the league” is guaranteed to annoy a lot of people.

    Fully understand why it happens, but don’t have a problem with people disliking it.

  31. Yup – it’s true. They should get more hockey on ESPN and more features on hockey players and good stories and more hockey on National Television, prime time, etc. They can do those ESPN stories about drug addicts or whatever in between periods. Make people cry and then root for that guy. The league just needs people (like us) who are not morons to run it’s PR. Get these guys in magazines. Maybe it works. I don’t know.

  32. Don Cherry’s diminishing of Lidstrom’s game and achievements purely due to his nationality, for one, is disgraceful.

  33. Careful Manny…. some of us used to resemble that moron PR remark. Part of it is not the NHL’s fault. ESPN doesn’t respect hockey and would rather the loudmouths of the NBA and NFL. Hockey guys are too quiet. The NHL has done a great job teaming with NBC as they will do whatever they can to promote their partnership. Although, I’d like to see Hank or Avery (Sorry Torts on this one) used on the Today show. Heck, Alexi Yashin once modeled a tuxedo on the Today to promote their wedding special edition. I’d say this the NHL promo is doing much better than pre lockout. Without spilling beans, there is a certain long time well-respected GM in the tri-state area that didn’t believe in promoting individuals when he had the best player in the League at his position.

  34. LW – I am a big Don Cherry and agree with him about 90% of the time but that point about Lidstrom is true and it deals with him not wanting anyone to say someone was as good as Orr.

  35. All good points. I take it back. I guess I just am frustrated when I talk to 99% of my friends and they say they just “don’t get hockey.” I believed them that there were too many rules and too much happening for them. Then I actually thought about it and realized that Football was MUCH harder to grasp and filled with the least amount of “Action” possible. In an entire football game there is less than 8 minutes of actual action. I would think that Hockey lends itself to a casual fan. Long periods of play without interruption, very few actual rules you need to know, and a lot of fast fun. Maybe people can’t keep up but I just don’t buy that.

  36. Carp
    i know you’re not at every practice
    but it looks as if this team
    should be practicing their shots
    and having rebound practice
    at EVERY session

  37. Manny – Have you ever taken someone to their first NHL game in person? If you have, I bet they loved it. Unfortunately, hockey doesn’t play well on TV (HD is helping). Plus, NFL is easier to root for. Once a week for three hours and then you don’t have to worry about it for 6 days. NHL fans needs 3-4 days a week to follow their team. Plus, gambling adds to NFL enjoyment. There are lots of reasons. I’m positive though that the NHL game is better than the NFL in person.

  38. “There is a certain long time well-respected GM in the tri-state area that didn’t believe in promoting individuals when he had the best player in the League at his position.”

    Damn right. Milbury just would never give Mariusz Czerkawski due credit.

  39. How exactly is he still the most exciting NHL player if he hasn’t played for 10 months? When OV is at his game, he is more exciting to watch. Of course Don Cherry has a thing or two to say about it….

  40. ilb2001 November 21st, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    Let’s not put him in the same sentence as TGO yet….Or ever.


  41. OMG! Crosby comes back tonight and you’re wasting valuable time talking to “page six” Avery Carp?! For Shame!

    btw- this “the game needs him” crap is just to be PC about the whole situation. I don’t think many players like him and even fewer like AND respect him. The game has done just fine the last year without him whining to refs every time someone comes within 500 feet of him. And honestly, if I were the Islanders- the first thing I’d do is go after him. No cheap shots. No dirty stuff. But this is hockey. If he’s physically capable of playing then he should be able to endure a good check or some rough stuff. What’s going to happen when Staal gets back for us? Is Torts going to complain that the forwards he’s out there to shut down are being too physical with him? WTB happened to this game?

  42. The nhl is so corrupted it’s no joke. How about some of those penalty calls on the rangers the other night and the refs blowing the whistle on a icing and making up there own rules that the puck stays in the rangers zone. Canadian referees + canadian team+ in canada = the rangers will get screwed every time. I’m not saying that’s why the rangers lost because it wasn’t the reason but the refs wanted to help out there fellow countrymen and probably helps why the rangers never win in Montreal. I love the rangers but I can’t stand buttman and his refs.

  43. watch tonight’s game pitt vs. islanders. Buttmen will have his boys (refs) protect little miss cindy at every cost.

  44. NYR_FAN "Step-on the GAS!" on

    Crosby’s the best player in the world. He doesn’t play on the Rangers. I do not put him on a pedestal because of his Cup with Pittsburgh or his Canadian Golden goal. He’s a great hockey player and I did not miss him while he was gone. There are other players I “hate” more on the Penguins…

    I’ll tell you what though, I’ve missed Mats Zuccarello in his absence from the NHL. He should be on the Rangers right now. Prust sayin’!

  45. Sweet transition, NYR. The ^Hobbit Wizard^ appreciates your efforts. I think we will know he is on his way to the Big Apple when Stawle ends up on LTIR.

  46. I agree. Crosby is the best player in the world. Better than OvechCANT! The guy has missed a lot of hockey though. Who knows, he might become the Canadian Forsberg.

    07-08 – 53 games played
    10-11 – 41 games played
    11-12 – Is healthy, 62 games played

  47. I don’t buy that “stars sell sports” idea. Stars sell products. Stars bring in advertisers. Stars fill the NHL’s wallet. They do jack squat for ratings in hockey, or attendance for that matter.

    Unless you’re talking Gretzky …

    Do you think one more person watches the Rangers if they’re playing against Ovechkin, as opposed to playing, say, Rick Nash?

    I don’t.

  48. It’s amazing the league survived the past 10 months. Or even that the Pens franchise hasn’t threatened to relocate.

  49. Boom Boom Bathgate on

    Ah, yes, the NFL or what I call the TATOOTF League = “There’s A Time-Out On The Field League.”

  50. I’m glad to have Sidney back. let’s Hope Staal comes back a 100x faster. He’s riding the stationary bike Sam !

    Was it the Players ?, Was it the Coach ?, Was it the Refs ? that ended the rangers 7 game winning streak. Was it Eva’s Gnome losing it’s magic powers ? let’s find out join us at 8 PM to talk Rangers hockey. Live and Uncensored.

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