Rangers-Stars in review


This was the lead to my story in The Journal News and on LoHud.com about last night’s game:

Get ready, hockey fans. The NHL is going to shove more nights like this down your throats with realignment.

More non-conference games, more games with zero playoff implications. Less passion. Quieter arenas.

The Rangers and Dallas Stars put a library-like Madison Square Garden to sleep in a 1-0 Dallas victory Tuesday night.

“It was kind of a boring type of game,” ex-Star Brad Richards said after playing his 800th NHL game and first against the Dallas since leaving there as a free agent in July. “Both teams were kind of playing that way.

“You could tell it was going to be ‘first goal wins’ probably.”

“Not a lot of hate out there,” Rangers coach John Tortorella said.

Well, at least it was quick.


1) Seriously, this game is what a lot more games are going to look like once realignment takes place. Fewer four-point, playoff-implication games. Relatively emotionless games, quiet buildings, empty seats (there weren’t many last night, to be fair). Games where it doesn’t matter if you give up the Bettman Bonus Point by going to OT.

2) So tell me again, pro-realignment guys, which Dallas players do you absolutely need to see twice a year? As opposed to, say, two more games against Boston or Montreal or Toronto?

3) Have you exhaled yet after seeing Henrik Lundqvist take that Sheldon Souray bomb off the collarbone?

4) The penalty on Carl Hagelin might have been the worst call in the history of hockey. Or at least tied with several others. There just isn’t any possible justification for blaming him for that collision. None.

5) John Tortorella doesn’t scream at officials very often. But this time he did. Complete with colorful language for HBO’s mics. I like what he said he told Hagelin. “To do it again.”

6) Brandon Prust had another staged fight, and again, I enjoy the fights and I respect the hell out of the guys who do it, especially a guy like Prust, who can play, too. But, I’m telling you, these fighters better smarten up, or they’re going to lose their jobs. The NHL is virtually searching for reasons to ban fighting from the game, and that day is surely coming, and the more of these unnecessary, fighter vs. fighter for no good reason bouts that occur, the more ammo the league is going to have. Maybe the guys who make plenty of money off their fists should start their own union and talk about it, about how they’re going to save their careers. Trust me. Hockey fights are going to be gone in the near future.

7) Say what you want about the Rangers’ popgun offense on this night, and they didn’t create enough even though they had the puck deep a lot (especially compared to early in the year when they didn’t have the puck at all). But Michelle Bachman was pretty good in goal.

8) Been meaning to say this for a while. I commend the Rangers for being truthful about their injuries, and not flipping off the fans by saying “upper body” or “lower body” as most teams do. Good for them.

9) I really don’t know what else to say about Brandon Dubinsky any more. I thought, earlier, that sitting him out a game wouldn’t accomplish anything, maybe would further erode his confidence. Now I’m not sure. Maybe he just needs that type of foot to the backside. I don’t know.

10) Is there anything dumber than the “We Want Avery” chant that went up within moments of the Dallas goal? Was there anything at all that having Avery in the lineup might have changed (other than Erik Christensen’s two blocked shots in the offensive zone)? Would there have been a snowball’s chance in hell that Avery might have actually seen the ice in a 0-0 or 1-0 game in the third period? C’mon. Though, honestly, he might have brought a little passion to the contest, and Christensen (1 shot, 1 missed shot, 1 giveaway, 1 for 8 on faceoffs) sure didn’t bring any.

11) Episode 1 of “24/7″ tonight at 10. I’m hoping to get my $14 worth of HBO in the next four weeks. Then cancel it.

12) If they’re going to play games like that, and call penalties like that, and eliminate fighting and pretty much all hitting, then yeah, by all means, let’s just have 60 minutes of breakaway contests and this way everybody will be on their feet the entire time and go home like happy idiots because there was no tie.


My Three Rangers Stars:
1) Henrik Lundqvist.
2) Michael Del Zotto.
3) Steve Eminger.


AP photos, above.

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  1. EC is useless. Avery is no Rick Toccett, but at least the guy has a pulse. EC is literally a placekicker. He has one use and and one use only: Shootout. I can’t do the math, but how many games go to shootout anyway? It isn’t worth having a guy with no balls on a team that thrives on having balls. There has to be a kid in Hartford more deserving of a shot than EC…

    …if not Avery.

  2. Maybe Avery sees that Bachman has no one in the crease. Maybe Avery tries to get the kid off of his game. If I am Torts, I have to consider that going forward. EC brings nothing when there are opponents on the ice. 1 for 8 on faceoffs? Good riddance.

  3. Leetch brought up a great point last night re:concussions. There were less concussions in his day (partly) because of the clutch and grab play that slowed the game down.

  4. I’d rather have 4 minutes of Avery, than however many minutes of Christy – those few minutes would have got the crowd more focussed on the game and maybe added a bit of passion. You have to think both of them are on borrowed time now that Rupp is nearly ready to go.

    As for fighting, i like it, but i dont like the staged fights between the 3-4 minute a night brigade. If someone elbows your top player then by all means you should pound the snot out of him – but that fighter should also be able to play a legitimate 4th line role as a minimum.

    I see the logic behind the get the team going fight philosophy, but really as highly paid pro’s your coach and players should not need someone to put their face (and brain) on the line to get them motivated – just look in the stands 15000+ people came to see you play (plus millions more on TV/internet), not to mention the (multi)million dollar salaries.
    If it is going to be allowed to continue there should be stringent medical tests and blood tests to detect any pain-med abuse. Not this bury-the-head-in-the-sand there has been with people like Boogey.

  5. mundo...FREE HD FREE HD FREE HD! on

    The day they ban fighting from hockey is the day I lose all hope for this world. We might as well all listen to Britney Spears and wear skinny jeans if that happens.

  6. I hope I’m wrong when I thought I saw EC on the ice with 2:40 to go and trailing 1-0? Could be I was a sleep after that gigantic snooze fest.

    But you gotta figure (hope) EC is done now and Dub1 will be centering Rupp/Avery and Prust.

    Great point on the realignment Carp and as always a good review!

  7. 7)- It’s ironic that Lundqvist got beat between the legs for the game winning goal. If the Rangers were smart they’re the ones that would have been aiming five hole on this kid in goal. Thought that was kinda hockey sense 101 when dealing with a guy you don’t have much tape on. I might be wrong. But whatever the case they certainly have a trend going when they face a goalie they haven’t seen before.

    9) The smart fans are all getting fed up for the right reasons. Yes Dubi’s been good in other areas aside from goal scoring. But let’s be honest- they didn’t give him 4 years at 4million per so that he can play solid defensive hockey as a fourth liner. Unfortunately it goes back to New York sports 101- they’re paying you so you better perform. Aside from the cliche though- they NEED him to score. Chris Newbury is making $525,000 this season and could probably do most of what Dubinsky’s done thus far this season. May even have a couple more goals.

    10) Like I said Carp, I’ll be glad when he’s no longer a Ranger for this very reason. It’s those people that cause other hockey fans to think Rangers fans are all idiots. Though it’s debatable if this would have been one of those “situational” games he should have played considering it’s his former team and he would have stirred the pot in a game that was just a little more exciting than having a tooth drilled.

    ps- Sheldon Souray. Wasn’t he supposed to be a Ranger like 20 times in the last 2 years? He’d be a top 4 on this team with the current make up of our defense. PRUST SAYIN’ ; )

  8. Sure it was somebody’s fault. It was the fault of all the players who thought they could get by with consistently trying to make sloppy and ill thought out passes and attempting to ram them through 5 or 6 opponents to their intended. And yes, the Rangers should send a film of that absurd call by refs, to whomever is in charge of refereeing and ask their opinions if this is what can be expected in the future.

  9. Regarding Christensen: Can anyone including Torts give 5 legitimate reasons this guy should be on the ice for this team? Or in the NHL for that matter? This isn’t even about Avery. If the coach wanted to pull Aves from the lineup for whatever reason fine. But to insert this guy into the line up…..ugh! Other than AA .47 putting his rebound home on Sunday night he’s been the worst player in the lineup both games he’s played. He’s not even depth. He’s just a nuisance.

  10. Fran I agree. Dallas set the pace (and I use the term loosely) and it took the Rangers off their game. I said it last night- these things happen over an 82 game schedule it’s not the end of the world but they better have learned a lesson from it.

  11. Rhode Island Ranger on

    Nothing dumb about the fans calling for a guy who plays with passion in a passionless game. Perfectly logical. Now, chanting for WW, THAT would be dumb!

    And let’s stop with the illogic that Avery in the lineup means Avery stapled to the bench, as if Torts’ personal enmity towards the player is some inviolable Law of the Universe. This very professional coach could try the crazy step of giving #16 EC’s 9-12 minutes. The stats say the Rangers will be better. Stats lie sometimes, but on this issue, they’re more trustworthy than the selfish coach.

  12. While I know Wolski and Rupp have been hurt- here’s something that should open some eyes.

    Christensen cap hit 925,000 1 g 4 a

    Dubinsky cap hit 4.2 million 1g 11 a

    Wolski cap hit 4 million 0g 2a

    Rupp cap hit 1.5 million 1g

    10.6 Millon dollars wrapped up in 4 guys that have contributed 3 goals and 17 assists. Let me try to explain how awful that is. That’s like having Mike Riebeiro (3g 17a on the year) on the team and paying him an extra 5.6 million dollars just for the hell of it.

  13. Ya know what RI, I’m just NOT going to get into this hoopla over Avery today. People can chant for him all they want. It’s going to get the same results as chanting “fire sather” did about 6 years ago. Allow me to go Yogi Berra on you for a moment: If Avery playing 12-15 minutes a game is the answer to our problems then we have a lot more problems than I thought.

  14. Rhode Island Ranger on

    James G:

    You make a very good point.

    But, don’t forget that all those underperforming Rangers boast the golden virtue of not being Avery. They don’t roll their eyes when Torts screams for more jam or toss orange peels on the sacred logo. Their his “better players” because He WILLS IT.

  15. More food for thought:

    Wolski- 25 years old and completely undesired by 29 other teams. 4 seasons of 40-50 point hockey on his resume.

    Dubinsky..25 years old…4 million dollar salary…4 seasons of 40-50 point hockey…How much longer til his stock crashes like it’s 1929?

    Granted, there are multiple differences between the two and Dubinsky is the better player overall but as a wise man once said: men lie, women lie, numbers don’t.

  16. Carp

    Without re-hashing the whole Avery debate (I’ll leave that to the blatant haters like James G…), can you remember a similar level of disproportionate outrage over a player’s treatment or dislike of a seemingly good coach based on a single issue that you can remember in the Rangers’ past?

  17. Rhode Island Ranger on


    Can you remember a Ranger coach who had declared that a fan favorite should be out of the league before he had even worked with the player and judged his work ethic and performance up close? I can’t either. Torts arrived with a baditude. Hell, his own players, grown men, were afraid to correct him when he repeatedly got a key player’s name wrong!

    The point is simple: The coach has a responsibility to put the best team on the ice he can, regardless of his own selfish personal likes and dislikes. Over the first two weeks, he didn’t do that. When the Rangers have been at their best this year, he has used the right players and allowed them (to the extent he’s psychologically able) to do what they do best.

    During the Rangers’ best runs this year, I have laid off the coach completely (even if I had disagreements with how he was using his pets and goats). Right now, Torts is not managing his roster well AND it’s going to get worse (and SLOWER!) when he forces Limpy Rupp back into the lineup. It’s bad for the team.

  18. stranger nation on

    In the realignment featuring more games against non-conf/non-division teams, the NHL should consider adopting a schedule that places these games earlier in year and more inter-conf/div games later in season.

    First half of season out of conference, second half in conference with concentration of in-division in last quarter of season. They try to create that now, but for travel reasons, fairness, and fan engagement the league needs to consider in the new realigned NHL.

    This season there are March games against Chi., Det., Col., Min. – when you are fighting for positioning a March game should be against conference/division foes.

  19. Fat Guy in A Little Coat on

    I see there’s alot of talk on here about Dubi and where he was on that goal. Not saying any of that is incorrect, but what the fack with Willie Wonka or whatever? Who is coaching these guys about how to clear the puck. He literally cost us a point singlehandedly, or maybe 2. Facking Hehl with this inability to get the puck out and deep. I guess we may be missing Stahl and Sauer after all – maybe not for skill, size, positioning – maybe just for being smarter with the puck.

  20. 17-7-4.

    How many of you would have signed up for this at the beginning of the year – especially with
    Marc Staal out of the lineup since day one?

    And anybody on this blog who doesn’t think #18 is a legit shut down all-star defenseman doesn’t know carcillo about hockey.

    Stop with the complaints and the over-analysis of every single minute of every single game

    They ran into a hot goalie last night – deal with it.

  21. LW I’ve always respected you and enjoyed your posts here but you can cry me a river on this one. I don’t hate Avery in fact, I was happy when he was back in the lineup. I just refuse to jump on the Avery > New York Rangers band wagon. He’s not the answer to every problem nor is he the factor that determines wins and losses. I say I’ll be happy when he’s gone because he’s become a distraction. We can agree to disagree because as I said I respect your opinion. But I stand firm on my view of the situation. Although let me make it clear that under no circumstances do I think that Christensen, Wolski or perhaps even Rupp should be playing over him.

  22. What about dubi playing on the cally Richards line? I thought that didn’t work and turns that line too defensive. Feds is much better on that line a s it is more balanced. I realize torts wants to get him going but he shouldn’t do so at the expense of losing games

  23. When Dubinsky has his offensive game and his confidence he’s virtually the perfect fit on the left side of those two. At this point he either needs to get put there for a decent stretch of games to see if he can break through or he needs to sit and clear his head for a couple games and go from there. There’s enough season left for him to put up his usual amount of production for the year. But they have to give him that kick in the butt now. Not in February.

  24. If Torts told Hagelin to “do it again” then he is officially my favorite coach in any sport, ever. My point on that play is one I was trying to make when we were all arguing about goaltender being fair game when Lucic tapped Miller into DTD status.

    Now, I know Hagelin barely even touched that Pretzel Maker, Bachman. But, if a goalie is going to come out of his crease and play the puck that aggressively, and Hagelin is not even allowed to CHALLENGE him for the puck why not just blow a whistle and award the puck to the goalie in a soccer-like “goal kick” situation. It’s insanity. You are, by not allowing contact with the goalie, essentially awarding the puck to the goalie that becomes aggressive.

    Personally, I HATE IT.

  25. Stranger Nation on

    Mynyr – no goals thru first30 mins and the torts line shuffler was brought out to try and get something going.

    Dubi played OK, the whole team played blah, uninspired hockey. Dallas clutch and grab tactics were allowed and you get a snoozefest at the garden.

  26. *authorben* – please come here and post more often. I dub you the knew VOICE OF REASON. Sorry, ORR. This guy takes the cake. I believe after the game last night I e-mailed another poster here and we both agreed, “7 losses on the entire season to date. I’ll take it.” I would have signed away my right arm for it at the beginning of the season.

  27. Re dubi, I’d be interested to see the stats on terms of production between the gas line and the Feds richie cally line because I don’t know why the Gas line is more untouchable than the line with Richards Feds and cally. Feds doesnt get enough respect.

  28. FEDS gets plenty of respect. Look at the Stanley Cup. Also, look at a list of players that have scored “cup clinching” goals.

  29. Carp,

    Did you see the play where Dubi was going to dump the puck in did a pump fake and threw Prust offside. Just awful. The guy is completely shot right now. Never thought he was great, but I have lost complete confidence in him.

    Definitely one of the 5 worst calls in the history of the NHL. The goalie and Hagelin were both going for the puck. The goalie did not have control. How could it be charging?????
    The d man had most of the impact with Bachman as Joe and Sam pointed out.

    I will really miss the 2 extra games with Montreal, Boston and Toronto. Also will miss out on one more chance each year to see the Rangers play in Boston.

  30. Manny between Feds and Rupp I’d say we’re covered if we make it to the 7th game of the SCF’s. lol

  31. Rhode Island Ranger asked: Can you remember a Ranger coach who had declared that a fan favorite should be out of the league before he had even worked with the player and judged his work ethic and performance up close?

    Ted Sator and Pierre Larouche during the 1985-86 season. Sator not only sent Larouche to the AHL, but they didn’t even send him to their affiliate in New Haven. Rather, Pierre was assigned to the Hershey Bears for 32 games, as opposed to 28 with the Rangers. Lucky Pierre came back and led the Rangers in scoring during the 1986 playoffs.

  32. Amen James. We have tons of Game 7 experience. Hope we make it there before Rosy Cheeks Baby Face and Rupperstilsken retire.

  33. You know what i love about Ranger fans, even when we are good (and we are a very good team this year), we can still find ways that the team can improve!!

  34. Manny,

    Thanks a lot.

    Been following the Rangers for nearly 4 decades now – and I see this team on the verge of becoming true contenders. Sure, they have some personnel issues – but what team doesn’t?

    These will be addressed down the line – and I believe they will pursue either Bobby Ryan and/or Ryan Suter at some point before the playoffs. Plus, there’s a chance that Marc Staal, Michael Sauer and perhaps Chris Kreider will all be on the roster by the end of the regular season.

    Still in all – with their goaltending, defense, team chemistry – and yes, coaching – this team will not suffer through long losing streaks and will most likely be in contention for home ice advantage all season long.

  35. Yay *authorben* Yay – I am 100% in agreement with you. I absolutely love this team. Love it. I think we are on the verge and as I say very frequently, this team is over-achieving now and we are a few pieces away from contending. Right now I am enjoying the ride and hoping that we can keep the losing streaks to a minimum and continue to *get points* .

    We play a pretty hot team on Thursday night and we will really need to dig deep to play them hard. Let’s Go boys!

  36. One more thing,

    Carp – thanks for creating a forum for the best fans – and sometimes the most panic-stricken – in the entire NHL – so we can voice our thoughts/opinions/concerns on everything Rangers.

    Much appreciated.

  37. Wow, didn’t realize it but Vinny Prospal has 23 points, would be 3rd on Rangers in scoring, right behind Gaborik.

    That’s the context to look at Avery & Christensen & Wolski in, the summertime decisions, and if you do it’s mind-boggling.

    Everyone wants to see the team younger but Prospal was such a pro and fit in perfectly.
    And that game last night was just the kind he’d show some passion and probably score a goal in.

    Just saying.

  38. Yes. Now the little fantasies will be shattered. Now instead of watching Rangers’ games with great anticipation you will be busy attaching rhinestones to your skinny jeans with the ‘Bedazzler’! Yes, that Bedazzler all why waiting to draft three named players from Western Canada with a top-five pick. That is all!™


  39. MDZ not only misses the net but misses by so much it routinely swings the puck out of the zone and traps everybody.

    Can’t knock him otherwise but that’s been hurting.

  40. All the shooting wide you would think that MSG would make the boards a bit less or more active. Whichever would help our guys out.

  41. Carp great scathing review… essentially of the NHL. BTW there was more emotion in your review than in the game last night.
    Totally agree with you on the fighting point…I hate the staged crap but the emotion of the game fights are great.

    Whenever I am offered free tickets they are most often to see Rangers…Yotes, Flames, Aves, etc. I am rarely if ever offered free tickets to see Debbies, Fishsticks, Philthies etc…
    I can’t believe the NHL hasn’t figured this out yet…do they research?
    When I want tickets I always look for Rangers against any local team first.

  42. Doodie Machetto on

    Remember back in late October/early November when I said Dubinsky should sit? Everyone told me I was crazy. Still think I’m crazy? It’s not even about his comically low goals and point totals. It’s the PIMs. He’s been in only 1 fight, yet he is second on the team in PIMs with 55. It’s time to sit him down. He’s adding nothing and hurting the team with his reckless play.

  43. How annoying is that Knicks commercial? Lame…

    The Avery chant…haha…I’ve been told that Devil and Islander fans don’t know much about hockey, but fans chanting Avery makes me wonder about Ranger some fans as well…I’m sure he would have been the “difference” last night…in his 4 minutes…

  44. Carp – great review, as usual.

    I was at last nights snooze-fest, and that was likely the quitest crowd I’ve witnessed in a long, long time.

    With regards to the Avery chant, I only heard it 1x and it lasted only 10 seconds max. In fact, I think it was chanted SOLELY by these two idiots kids sitting next to me in Section 103 (row 18). I believe the press box / your is near that area, right?? Wonder if that’s who you heard…..

    Also – Dallas Star fans sure do travel well! I saw a total of 8 Stars jerseys in the arena last night. So much for expansion…..

    /Bettman sucks

  45. I wonder what Tortorella would have told Avery if it was he and not Hagelin that bowled over Bachman last night?

    Go to your room?

  46. you dont need the planned schedule with realignment. I am a big fan of how the divisions will be set up, but also disagree completely with the schedule.

  47. James, did you actually look at the stats or are you just throwing those numbers out there? Wolski has played a whopping 6 games this year, so no sh*t he only has 2 assists. Also, the year before we got him, he had 65 points, not 40-50 (although he did average about 48 points in the previous years).

    Rupp has also been injured and barely played, plus we didn’t pay him to be a scorer. Dubi has been a big disappointment this year, so I’ll agree with that.

    As for EC vs. Avery, Avery is the more effective physical player and EC is the more skilled player. Problem is that Avery is much better at his job (and so far more consistent this year) than EC is at his job. EC will have one game out of 10 where he actually plays to his potential. Avery had 6 out of 10.

    Personally, I’d rather them both be gone and bring up MZA or another kid who can add more offensively, but for now I guess we have to pick between either.

  48. I’m not a 100% about this, but Dubinsky’s stock is falling, and it maybe time to say goodbye. Dubinsky could still get us a good draft pick, and probably be in a package for another good player. I’m not sure who, but like most have pointed out, there are younger kids who probably deserve a chance at this point. Instead of protecting him Tort’s needs to think about the team. Not every young player is going to be a great or even good hockey player. I think a move might do him good.

    I like Avery, and yes Tort’s does not like the guy, but like someone pointed out, “isn’t it Tort’s responsibility to put the best team he can on the ice?” Please don’t tell me Rupp is better. I have no idea what Tort’s is going to do when Wolski, Rupp, etc. etc. come back, but it will be the end of Avery.

    Maybe we should package Avery/Dubinsky together and just take what we can get? Just not sure why Tort’s is making this an issue. No matter what anyone says this is an issue because Tort’s makes it one. Putting EC out there taken Avery out, just stop and trade Avery or something.

    Wait I got it…..Dubi/Avery/Zucc for whatever we can get. They are players Tort’s doesn’t want, and Dubinsky just needs a change of scenery.

  49. Also Carp, from the NHL’s perspective, you have to have every team play each other at least twice. You want to expose the stars from teams like Dallas and Columbus and Florida to the other cities.

    Even if the team is garbage, you still want to give fans exposure to every team in the league. Plus if they put the division games at the end of the season like they do now, those games will be extremely heated as they will count for the playoffs. And that is when most fans show up to the rink anyway.

  50. Cynar – Torts definitely wants Zucc. It’s just he wants him playing top 6 minutes (or even 3rd line) rather than play 5 minutes a night on the 4th line.

  51. Several items to consider

    I don’t mean to get caught up in the “who’se the right player to have on the ice and who to can” gambit.

    But keep one thing in mind. Little errors or misplays
    cannot be casually accepted by thinking. “well aren’t we great to be this far along at this time of the season?”
    Self satisfaction concerning the standing, is not a good substitute for accepting mediocrity ..at any level, and by anyone – for that has a tendency to bloom out of control and become a trend. Their play last night was not even mediocre…it was downright foolish. And so repetitive. And for picking out certain players for damnation, is also foolish, for by doing so, that player is relegated to the position of being unable to do anything right. I see much angst whenever Christensen’s name comes up and while he is not the best choice under certain circumstances, he’s not the worse. Now this man has a terrific potential game changing shooting ability that has been demonstrated on more than one occasion. And he has most decidedly thrown his weight around in body work on several occasions which goes unremarked upon. ( You know, the old, “he can’t do anything right” business or that he is somehow chicken because he isn’t dropping his gloves at the drop of a puck. He dished out some notable checks this game, and he also had a very
    fine play in the scrums..and although unsuccessful, he was not any more culpable of poor play than most of the others, who always get a pass. Torts is aware of his strengths and his short comings, and has seen fit to try using him as a special instrument. There are actually a few lesser skilled players on this team than he. Matters not a whit to me whether he goes or stays, but while he’s here and gives Rangers a shot at something special, I’ll go along with Torts decisions
    and try not to get my shorts in a tangle over them.

  52. I wonder why Erixon was recalled? Could it have anything to do with WoyWhatever making yet another blind pass up ice by a D-Man?

  53. I see Erixon has recalled, which means they are either dipping into LTIR space or their will be a corresponding move because according to Cap Geek we have 546K left and he’s worth 1.7.

  54. stranger nation on

    Cynar – signed dubi to a $4M/per deal – not sure if other GMS are grabbing the phone to pick him up at those rates. at this rate, that signing may be Dreary like in comparison.

    When Rupp comes back, Dubi should sit for a couple or more. Wusskie should be shot (Fredo Style).

  55. As for the realignment complaints, while last night’s game is a good argument against it, no one has a better solution for realignment. And don’t tell me just switch Detroit and Winnipeg. Detroit in the SE division would win it every year by double digits points. The League GM’s (for the first time ever) made a decision that was in the best interest of the NHL not THEIR own team. It’s easy as a Atlantic division fan to say the new alignment is bad, can’t say the same for 15 franchises in the Western Conference, especially the Central Division teams. Sorry, but I am not selfish enough to say to a Red Wing Fan (just as original six as us) Big Deal – So you have stay up to 1 AM 15-20 times a year to watch your team.

  56. I have a family friend who is a long time school principal (is in his school before 7AM) on Long Island. Went to school in Michigan and became a Red Wing Fan. Falls in love with hockey and when returns to NY becomes the PA announcer for the LI Ducks (not the baseball team – but for John Brophy – think Slap Shots). He’s a huge hockey fan, but has lost interest in Wings because he doesn’t see their road games because he’s asleep by 1030 to get up by 5AM and misses about 15 road games. What should I say? Sorry about that, but the Rangers need to have an easily schedule than the easiest one in the NHL they already have.

  57. Doodie Machetto on

    Hwirth, the simple solution is to swap Nashville, Minnesota, and Winnipeg. Nashville goes to the Southeast, Minnesota goes to the Central, Winnipeg to the Northwest.

  58. Doodie Machetto on

    And the fix for Dallas is easy: swap them with Vancouver. How is a city on the Pacific Ocean not in the Pacific division?

  59. And Detroit and Columbus? Mostly Detroit? They still have the same problem with ALL their road in conference games being out of their time zone.

  60. Doodie Machetto on

    HW, so the solution is to save Detroit 6 games in the Pacific Time zone at the cost of every other team in the league? That’s preposterous!

  61. And the truth is, even if they had kept the division set up they were still changing the schedule so Detroit didn’t have to play the other 2 western divisions twice.

  62. stranger nation on

    doodie – Dubi can be moved, but you will get back another disappointment like Wusskie/Rosi trade.

  63. Doodie Machetto on

    The point is, the league shouldn’t have contorted itself just to satisfy Detroit. They are basically sentencing the two Florida teams to death. Who the hell in Florida gives a damn about Ottawa, Montreal, and Toronto? Cut down the number of times they get too see Crosby and Ovechkin, another brilliant move.

    Rangers see Toronto, Montreal, and Boston only twice. But hey, Carolina!

    There were simple solutions and instead they passed on those to appease Detroit and Detroit alone.

  64. Doodie Machetto on

    stranger, at this pace, it might be smart to just start considering the value of clearing the contract.

  65. HW dont forget Erixon’s cap value is pro-rated so the team would get charged about $21k per game. In theory he could play 27 games before we needed to make a move to gain cap relief (obvsiouly Slats needs to hold some cap space back in case he wants to make a deadline trade).

  66. Stranger Nation, and others, I think Dubinsky is tradeable, and I think he still has some up swing. But it just not here. Weather its the NY thing or whatever it’s just not working for him here. If we package him with some other players, I think we could get a good return.

    Mind you I’m not saying we HAVE to trade Dubinsky but if we are looking for something in particular I think he is someone other teams would have interest in. Plus it’s just a thought since he seems to be struggling very badly at the moment. I’m just not sure he will be able to pull out of this slump, and sometimes a change of scenery is all the player needs. And since Avery is not going to get any ice once some of these players come back try to include him. WT Hell it might work.

  67. Doodie Machetto on

    Cynar, that’s how I feel. We don’t HAVE to trade him. In other words, Slats shouldn’t be shopping him around, but he should definitely be taking calls.

  68. Realignment sucks all about appeasing the detroit and Dallas of the world. As for last night why the hell is woywitka out there with 5 mins to go. Get the damn pt

  69. Dont worry about the lifeless games like last night after realignment. Look on the _Bettman_ bright side, at least the Bruins will have an easy road to the playoffs each year :)

  70. How about this radical realignment plan:
    Pacific: LAK, SJS, PHX, VAN, ANA
    Midwest: EDM, CAL, COL, DAL, MIN (or WPG)
    Central: DET, CHI, CLB, STL, WPG (or MIN)
    Atlantic: NYR, NYI, NJD, PHI, PIT
    NEast: BOS, MTL, TOR, BUF, OTT
    SEast: NAS, CAR, WAS, FLA, TBL

    Keeps most existing rivalries and eases travel for some teams like Detroit, Dallas, Winnipeg. Plus the Preds would provide a decent opposition in the SE. Minny or The Peg can be switched if there is a worry about having the Canadian teams isolated, or alternatively in only 3 out of 6 divisions.

  71. Doodie Machetto on

    Eric, my brother and I were talking about that earlier in the period. Woywitka and Stralman were nowhere to be found. By the time 5 mins rolled around, they had to go out there because everyone else needed a rest.

    Which reminds me: Girardi on the PP is a terrible decision. It’s not like the guy is a great PP QB so we need to have him out there. He’s playing like 30 mins a night. The PP seems like an easy spot to sit him down to limit those minutes a little bit. The guy is going to be worn down before February. Maybe if he doesn’t play on that PP he can be out there in the last 5 minutes instead of Woywitka and Stralman.

  72. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    While some love torts and others don’t… In the long run, I would prefer a 3rd cock as the rangers next coach thereby joining Bab and Hitch.

  73. stranger nation on

    Stralman should be on the first PP unit over MDZ. Del Z cannot hit the net with his shot and (as previously noted) consistently takes wide slappers from left side resulting in puck clearing zone.

    Step has played better at point, but with no cannon up top teams can sag in.

  74. eddie eddie eddie on

    doodie – spot on…torts is clearly needs a class in game/man management…….the way he plays/not plays his team is bizarre at times…Put Hags on the PP point…the kid is fast and can blast

  75. So is Woywitka the healthy scratch now that Erixon’s been recalled? Guy took six minutes in stupid penalties on Sunday and then made that awful play last night.

  76. eddie eddie eddie on

    RIR – on the other hand, per a previous post, maybe the rangers already have the NHL’s third cock behind the bench……John Tortscock

  77. Doodie I’m with ya…….I think there are teams who would be interested in Dubi, and possible a package with Avery just to rid the team of this whole Avery thing once and for all. This coming from someone who likes Avery.

    This whole thing with who’s in and who’s out IS bizzare at times, and quit frankly Tort’s is making it Newspaper worthy by sitting Avery, and putting EC out there.

    One other thing if we don’t start resting Girardi a little bit he will wear down, then we will be in real trouble. Why is he even out there on the PP, give Stralman a chance at least. We understand riding your big guys at the end of a game, but if players aren’t given the chance then how do we know? (see Avery rules for how Tort’s system works, it’s beyond most peoples comprehension)

  78. Doodie Machetto on

    “Put Hags on the PP point…the kid is fast and can blast”

    Ehhh, not ready to do that yet. That’s basically begging to be scored on shorthanded to put a rookie forward on the PP point (aka, Stepan last year).

    Surprising stat: Rangers and Washington tied for 4th best PP at home with 21.7%.

    Not surprising stat: Rangers PP is 28th on the road at 10.7%.

  79. Doodie Machetto on

    “I think there are teams who would be interested in Dubi, and possible a package with Avery just to rid the team of this whole Avery thing once and for all. This coming from someone who likes Avery.”

    Nobody wants Avery. Everyone had a shot at him for half of his current cap hit (a quarter of his true hit) when he was recalled and nobody bit.

  80. Carp…nice recap…but…

    You complain about the emotionless game and the lack of excitement and then in the next line you complain about Prust’s fight and trying to get things going. That sounds contradictory.

    And I am willing to bet a lot that fighting is not coming out of hockey. A few bureaucrats versus guys like Colin Campbell and a majority of players who understand the need for players to police themselves will always win over. Hockey’s been around a lot longer than Gary Buttman.

    Dubi has to sit. That is the only way. And btw, my brother’s theory alongside me is that Dubi is out partying too much and carrying on in NYC. NYC is a tough place to play. I would take Avery over Dubi right now but for some of Dubi’s special teams play.

    And Christensen just invisible. I mean in wide open games, EC is fine. In tight checking games, he sucks. I am pretty sure I am right about this.

    Moving on….

  81. Boom Boom Bathgate on

    Couple things as regards the new conference alignment. First, you are right Carp, games with a four-point swing are paramount in importance and intensity. “Boring,” non-emotional games are not so bad in one respect, however. And that is the fact that with the idiotically-crammed 82-game regular season schedule, there is a definite burn-out factor almost always at work. To ask players to play with intensity, night after night, is to wear down your team, long before the playoff grind comes around.

    So that “boring,” non-intense games can represent a breather for the teams involved. It wouldn’t surprise me if the Rangers come out relatively fresh and mentally sharp, next time they take the ice.

    Over-expansion is definitely the culprit, here, and it wasn’t so long ago so many were expressing
    extreme dissatisfaction with the unbalanced schedule and the infrequent match-ups between some old rivals. You cannot have it both ways, there must be compromise somewhere to accomodate all the considerations. I, for one, intensely detest all professional sports mis-leading and deceptive “mini-divisional” structures. The National Hockey League has stepped up and addressed that garbage format nonsense with this vastly improved and honest new structure coming into place. So that while it is not a 100 per cent clear-cut gain, I look at it as about a 75-25 win, and really feel good about getting to see hockey standings in the future which put the worst teams in seventh or eighth place, where they belong, not in fourth place, like that disgusting National Football League, as though every team were a contender.

    Enougth bull***t, give me some integrity in something in this plastic, superficial, sales and marketing glossy con-artist world. Again, I say, thank you Gary Bettman, for stepping up and for taking the heat of the critics, here. I am with you on this one.

  82. eddie eddie eddie on

    doodie – you try hags on the pp point in games like Fla when they are up 4-1, 5-1, 6-1….plus with his speed he can back check to negate some, if not many, give- aways leading to a break away chance

  83. Boom Boom Bathgate on

    Korpi just notched goal number six on the year for Phoenix. Damn I liked him and miss him and wish we could dump Dubinsky and some dead-head kid off to Phoenix to get him back. Korpi always had good mechanics, a good work ethic, and a modest, but with some upside development potential scoring touch.

  84. eddie eddie eddie on

    new newman – it could be partying for the doobie,,,or it it could be too much time spent doing fantasy football….

  85. The problem with the “if Kaberle got moved, Dubi can be moved” theory is that Montreal doesn’t have the space (I think) to take on Dubi and there aren’t many other GM’s like Pierre Gauthier.

  86. eddie eddie eddie on

    doesnt doobie have some brothers? go black water, keep on rolling mississippi moon wont you keep on shining your light, gonna make everything, gonna everything allright…

  87. eddie eddie eddie on

    …i dont care what dead men say, i dont care what dead men know, jesus is just allright with me….

  88. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    Morning ILB and all!!

    hope the bonehead meeting was a blast!!

    with erixon money, I guess avery is going down? A move on the horizon?

    I am not a fan of the realignment personally, but I would hope our coaches will be able to motivate the players for non-rivalry games…if not enjoy the success this year.

    I wonder if torts “displaces” feds because he feels feds is a professional and can handle it better than some of the other guys he might “displace”? Kinda like he will bench glue prust to the bench but not VV2.

    from last thread, I think daley was the d man on dubi/s side who scored the goal. VV2 was predictably on his aasen after a “collision” in the D zone. I only saw it during the game broadcast, so I could be wrong on this (I don’t think I am)!

    Not sure erixon is the answer, especially if sauer is now out for the season!

  89. So far I’ve seen everything from Stralman I’d hoped for (except the hip checks, which he’s good for, youtube it).

    He’s starting to loosen up offensively and he hasn’t hurt in his own zone. Skates, shoots & handles the puck real well. 16 mins last night and Girardi finally under 25.

    It’s why I’ve been howling for Torts to get him in, especially & obviously for the PP for which he was signed. I don’t know if it’s Torts’ ‘you have to earn it” system, but it’s always strange like that, the coach seeing the obvious.

    Unless you’re EC.

  90. At this point, moving Dubi would be a monumental task – if you want to get something of value in return

    however – he may become part of a bigger package at the deadline – if he is moved at all

    And brining up Erixon now is a good thing – perhaps this is the same route that management took with McD last season

    Woywitka has done an admirable job on the third pairing – but it wouldn’t be a bad thing to see how the kid has progressed since October – especially inserting him into the lineup on the road – less pressure in this type of situation. He’s a fluid skater and strong puck mover – plus he could play the point on the PP a bit.

  91. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    speaking of can’t have it both ways, someone said (don’t remember who) the clutching and grabbing dallas stars made for a boring game…how many concussions did we see??

  92. MSGnetworks @MSGNetworks 3m
    Reply RetweetedRetweet
    FavoritedFavorite · Close Open Details Check out the highlights and analysis from last night’s exciting #Rangers – #Stars matchup: http://bit.ly/rubeOO #NYR

  93. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    obviously christian thomas is a bust, he didn’t make the Canadian WJC team. Any player who doesn’t make that team is a BUST!!!

  94. while trading avery for, why not redden also, and how about drury?

    avery has zero value to other teams, he is slighlty better then cam jansen.

    dubi has 1 goal because he is petrified to shoot, have him shoot the puck fro mevery angle etc. the usual ranger get rid crwod wants to get rid of a 25 yr old good 2 way player. is he underperforming terribly so far? absolutley and so is BOyle. Dubi is not making $7 mill a year, he as he is performing now is overpaid but there is time. WOlski gets $3.8 mill, who’s more valuable him or Dubi? I say a 1 goal Dubi is more valuable then a slow, soft WOlski. WHo cannot kill penalties……..

  95. stranger nation on

    stewie – comparing Dubi to Wusskie – why not compare him with a statue? Everyone wants to get rid of WW save for delusional fans awaiting return to his 60 pt form which we have seen very little evidence of.

    Think about the current roster and farm system and question if you want to pay Dubi $4.2M per or Boyle a lesser amount (1.7) b/c that is where Dubi will be playing (Kreider et al). I think Boyle does what is asked of him, last year was an outlier with his offensive production.

    Is Dubi done – definitely not does Dubi have upside – without a doubt (lord we hope). Do we need a more physical player to line up with Richie rich and Capt Cally – think so.

  96. Wicky©"suspend the hittee..LW compliant version" on

    so puck daddy has a live chat going on about rumours and such and this was a beaut..

    Comment From mattyG
    I played poker with Iggy’s stepdad in vegas this weekend, said he’d be a ranger

  97. The greatest mistake that Bettman made is violating one of the most basic Suthren concepts……………………………………………………………………_” If,n it ain’t broke…don’t fix it.”

  98. Carp:

    As good of an article as I have read in a long time. You nailed it in regards to having boring games! Andrew Gross tweeted that it was as many empty seats as he has seen all year. If John Tortorella actually thinks that EC, Fedetenko, or even John Mitchell are as good as Sean Avery, then he is terribly mistaken. I am an avid supporter of Sean, but the fact is, he is a MUCH better player than all of them. And the fact that Torts thinks that other people can bring what Avery brings….well that was never true until Torts decided to transform Avery into some quiet skating figure.

    Secondly, as for the direction of the league, it is becoming quite a joke. Tortorella acknowledged it when he said there was no hate. NO HATE!? There wasn’t a hit!

    I have no problem with the Prust fight either. Staged or not, he didn’t just fight so that he could earn his paycheck….it’s always been a part of the game, you use a fight to rally your boys and get them going. No problems whatsoever.

    As boring a game as there can be, just have to hope the league doesn’t go too far in this direction.

  99. I am genuinely confused on why so many believe Rupp is going to be such an improvement when he returns. (And you know Torts is going to reinsert him in the lineup as soon as he’s ready.) Rupp has never been an offensive powerhouse. Since Avery is always such a hot topic here, I’ll use him for comparison:

    GP G A P +/- Playoffs GP G A P +/-
    Avery 580 90 157 247 16 28 5 10 15 -4
    Rupp 504 50 40 90 -26 43 2 6 8 8

    It would appear Rupp is not very offensively skilled and is a much larger desense liability. His best season only saw him earning 19 points (compared to Avery’s career high 48). So he fights. Not very effectively, from what I’ve seen, and certainly no more so than Avery. So what is the up side to his return other than the fact that Torts likes him?

    As Cynar wisely pointed out, Avery only seems to be a distraction because the coach makes him one. If Torts just put Avery on the 4th line and consistantly played him his 8-10 minutes and left it at that, there would be no distraction. Torts makes it one when he benches the guy for no “apparent” reason. If there is a legitimate reason, then give it. If not, then play the guy his 4th line minutes and shut up.

    As for the “We want Avery” chant…except for a few morons that you will find in any organization, most people know Avery would not have been on the ice the last 10 minutes of that game last night, nor would he have automatically scored the GWG if he had. I believe the chant is more about expressing displeasure with the coach, Sather, or the team’s overall effort (or lack thereof). “Avery” has become like “Disney”. Walt Disney realized his name took on a whole meaning that was separate from the man. Just as last year’s All-Star write-in campaign for Avery was not because people believed Avery to be one of the league’s top players so much as it was meant as a slap in the face to the League. Playing Avery last night would not have ensured a win. However, it is just as possible that playing Avery last night would not have brought it down to 1-0 the last four minutes of the game. I guess we’ll never know.

  100. John Brophy

    Now that’s a name that registers in my memory….played under Don Perry..if it’s the same Brophy, he was known as the Swordsman, due to his every ready use of the slash with the stick.. I actually saw him in a stick fight with another player once and it was like watching a Japanese Samurai film. Perry was another of those guys who was born 30 years too soon…he had a brief call up with someone ( forgot who), but if I’m not mistaken he managed the Hawks for a brief stay. I saw a playoff game in the old New Haven arena , the NH Blades vs the Clinton Comets
    (upstate new york team) and what a playoff it was. The final game, Perry stayed on the ice for the entire third period,and when the Blades finally won it in multi overtimes, he just collapsed out in center ice flat on his back..exhausted. Those were exiting games and times, all with guys who would never make it to the big leagues, not because they weren’t talented enough, but because it “just wasn’t done” in those days.

    And tix prices were cheap too.

  101. Christensen shanked one from about 3 feel outside the crease yesterday, and in a game where 1 goal is the difference between winning and losing, then he needs to at least put that on goal. He’s notorious for whiffing on cross-ice feeds at the side of the net, eating up precious power play time for a player who actually CAN bury a lay-up. He even did it the other night against Florida, since Anismov’s goal was a follow-up on his tap-in that somehow went off the pipe. The guy is a complete non-factor, despite being able to get PP time and critical minutes. If The Rangers need a SO guy who might make a difference during the actual game, then recall MZA.

  102. Of the 55 PIMS, Dubi had 37 in his first 4 games – that’s only 18 over the last 24 games, with 4 of those being a double minor for fighting/not fighting.

  103. The Florida teams did kind of get screwed, but they also are staying in their own time zone anyway. Don’t forget they also have the luxury of playing in sunny 70 degree weather year round.

    They also said that they’ll schedule them to make road trips so that they aren’t travelling that much during the season. They’ll go to Ottawa, then Montreal, then TO or something like that and then come home for a bunch of games.

    BTW, this also sets up the NHL for contraction or expansion if they want since they know that if they add a team to the league, it’ll be in the East and if they remove a team from the league, it’ll most likely be from the West.

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