Rangers-Capitals in review


This is what happens when you play well for an extended period of a season and people take notice … teams that might not be so good, or not playing so great, find another gear when they play you. It becomes a big game for them. And that really hasn’t happened much since 1997.

And it sure happened last night.


1) The Rangers were out-hit, without a doubt. But the statisticians at that arena that changes names every five minutes had the Rangers for 15 total hits in the game. Pass the bong.

2) Not sure what he does the rest of the time, but against the Rangers, Jason Chimera=Beast. Oh, and Mike Knuble for Rob DiMaio. My God.

3) Those were some God-awful plays by Brian Boyle and Brad Richards on the goals in the second. Richards has been lousy since that goal with 00:00.1 left in Glendale.

4) The Rangers had a decent power play late, but the first couple, and for some in recent games, they’ve regressed to standing around as they did early in the year, when the PP was pathetic.

5) Ryan Callahan. Big as a building.

6) And after one of the most dramatic Callahan blocks, how about Brandon Dubinsky with the hop, skip and jump that led to the tying goal. Tomas Vokoun’s got to stop it, but give Dubinsky credit for creating the chance and hitting the net, at least. Thought he was strong most of the game.

7) John Mitchell looks like he sure doesn’t want to be the guy who comes out if the Rangers, for some ridiculous reason, decide to put Wojtek Wolski back into this lineup.

8) I like Eddie O and Doc, and I like Pierre a lot more than you guys do, but can they please, please shut up once in a while on the analysis and let us know what’s going on on the ice? Don’t try to impress us with how much you know, Pierre, tell us what’s going on at ice level. For God’s sakes.

9) I still cannot believe, on a Rangers team that has had such as terrible concussion history, that has its alternate captain not play a single shift this year, and a top-4 defenseman who suffered a concussion when his helmet popped off, so many guys still wear their chinstraps dangling inches below their chins. And that the training and coaching staffs actually allow it.

10) Dale Hunter=Matt Cooke.

11) Not a chance you can put this game on Martin Biron, though I don’t think he was great.

12) Highlights of “24/7″ episode 3: The audio, with subtitles, of the Peter Laviolette-Steve Ott incident in Dallas; Ott telling Claude Giroux how good he is on faceoffs, and suggesting he go check on NHL.com; Michael Del Zotto’s sweater (WTB?); Laviolette playing psychiatrist and convincing Giroux that he looks great in practice (and perhaps influencing him to return early from a concussion?); Jaromir Jagr telling Giroux it’s tough to score four points at the Garden and adding “I did it.”; Mike Rupp telling Jody Shelley he’s irrelevant;  Richards mocking Sestito from the bench; Brian Boyle’s sister (one of 13 kids?) telling him, “I can still take you down.”

13) Oh, and did they have to put that camera and spotlight right on top of my shiny head during the John Tortorella presser after the win over the Flyers?

14) Also, I’m sick of Ilya Bryzgalov and his act.


My Three Rangers Stars:
1) Ryan Callahan.
2) Artem Anisimov.
3) Brandon Dubinsky.


 AP photos, above.

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  1. Morning, Carp. Kind of early for the review.
    Great, as always. The team winning sure has masked the lack of contribution from Boyle. I wonder if there is a point where he needs to sit a game or two just to take a step back. Perhaps he’s pressing too much.

  2. Did not think Biron was too sharp, particularly on rebounds. While he was not why they lost, it shows why sometimes Henrik gets them a win that they may not otherwise get.

  3. Even ignoring the funny math on the hit stats last night, when Versus started with the stat and the Caps were way in front, it seemed like that was at a point when the Rangers had the puck a lot. When you have the puck more, you hit less and sometimes that gets overlooked with the stat. Still, though, throughout the game, other than Cally, the Rangers hitting seemed a bit less than it has been.

  4. Hey MD, hattrick!

    Agree on that possession is partly to fault for the star early on, but in the second when the game was turning we could’ve needed more hits from others than Cally and something (insert A name) to get their big line of its game.

    Very much agree with Carp on BRich, looks like he doesn’t want to play in some shifts. Hope he gets out of this slump fast..

    You can’t win them all…


  5. I think Torts is gonna have to start giving nights off to some players. Prust, Boyle, and Feds all look like they are run down out there. I even think MacD is beginning to show some cracks. I know Avery and EC are not long for this team, but some of these regular guys need a break.

    And who the hell is Rupp to call ANYONE irrelevant?!?

  6. CW. Agree on the nights off. Perhaps motivational, perhaps just to give some a break. Like that he is doing it more with Henrik. Could benefit position players too.

  7. Which of the 5 faces do you not like, Carp??

    Gabby took the night off.
    The Caps won just about every one on one battle that Cally wasn’t in on.

  8. Manny, can you believe it? My Doctor is going to the Game against Florida on Jan 6 and thats without me.. I Need to stay back here in her Hospital :) She is going to the World famos Arena in the World and thats without me… Without me….

    More than though to swallow…..

  9. I hate the Caps and all their players’ demeanors. What a bunch I schlubs. Vs can go F themselves. HBO = cutesy distraction that thank god is almost over. Bring Avery back. God help our defenseman heal. Thanks to RM for the tix to the FLA game this Friday.

  10. 5-1 in our last 6. 1 point out of first. We had a letdown game in which we let a less physical team take out our own physicality. Those scrums around the goalies even disappeared. That was frustrating. Also upset that Rupp didn’t fight Erskine for going after Callahan. Weak! Boron is what? 8-2? I’ll take it!

    Thought 24/7 was the best yet. Lots of HOCKEY. Rupp was hilarious on the ice. The Ott/Laviolette thing was awesome and so was the face off jab. Also, boy did Tortarella look like the better coach once again. Jack Adams!

    Bryzgalov went from hilarious to staged to just forced. That’s a let down. Also, his 3 year old scored on him.

  11. Hey Carp, if you didn’t mention #13, I wouldn’t have noticed!! I was actually looking for you in that piece but couldn’t find you. Now of course, I have to get to my DVR and check it out!!! Oh, and I totally disagree on Bryzgalov; he’s the hit of 24/7!!!! Boyle, not so much!!! I did notice the absence of Avery in this episode altho Calli gives him some props about wearing sunglasses inside. This year’s 24/7 could use more of those on-ice conversations!!!

  12. To expand: Laviolette looked pretty freakin’ bad when he was telling Giroux that he “looked good” and that’s all that matters. It’s old school and I like that but it really just seemed like a bad thing to be saying in this ear of concussions. I winced a bit and though that Laviolette was a jerk. Then Jagr told him, “he better play.” Another not great performance. Not a great idea to tell a player he “looks fine” when concussions are an injury that is completely internal. Stahl looks fine too but I am glad they are taking their time with him.

  13. Good morning, ‘heads!

    Gonna be busy day for me.
    They didn’t play that bad. Looked like Washington wanted it more. Happens when you’re on top of the conference. Couple of brain cramps, Biron doesn’t control the rebound, some D-men a step slow, you got an L. Move on. I’m with Manny, Rupp should’ve “talked” to Erskine. Callahan was one of a few who played hard. Does he not always? Someone needs to protect him from the goons.

    Didn’t watch 24/7 yet.
    Can’t wait for NNs to show up this morning.

  14. Manny i Found a Ticket in sec 343 for that Game which is on January 5th…. But She will Never allow me :) i would Fly in Fra-Jfk and on 6 th back !

  15. These games are inevitable, no matter how good you are. The key is keep them to a minimum, especially consecutively.

    How the Rangers respond Friday is, of course, important.

    They won’t have it easy, either – the Panthers will be looking to revenge the 6 – 1 shellacking they took at the Garden a few weeks ago…

  16. Regardless of how good the Rangers are, this is a very tough 3 game road trip. Which is why winning that Icelander game on Monday was so important. Richards needs to pick it up. He looks bad lately.

  17. People want to blame Richards for the first Capitals goal, but it looked to me that he was looking to pass to someone at the blue line, but there was a teammate that was offside. So, he held onto the puck while that player got onside and then lost possession and we know what happened after that.

    If the guy (I didn’t see who it was) was not offside then Richards would have passed the puck.

  18. bryzgalovs act is old and he is not that good. they have about 8 years more on his deal also.

    stralman is soft on the puck in his own zone also.

    rupp, prust, and feds not adding much at all…

  19. Good morning, Carp! I thought that was you at the presser! You’re famous!

    I watched 24/7 with my friend who likes the Sabres but wasn’t a huge hockey fan. And she’s one of us now! She also kept asking me why the Flyers were so boring (minus Bryz) and ugly.

    Gotta agree that MDZ’s sweater was kind of amazing.

  20. richards could have simply dumped the puck in or god forbid been offsides, no crime in either. turnover before the red line not good…

  21. Caps suck. Their fans suck. And OV is a total punk.

    Be physical with Semin from the get go, put a couple PP goals in the net and we win the game.

    Rupp doesn’t want any part of Erskine after Erskine kicked his butt last season.

    Tough game, move on to Friday.

  22. Stranger Nation on

    Can Wolski take his new byfuglein tweety toy and throw it in the trash. Nobody cares what you have to say until your game ‘says’ something on the ice, preferably in the nutmeg state. What a clueless jack wagon.

    The Rangers lack of size will wear them down over the course of the season. Basic physics explains you can have bickers as big as the building, but when the calendar turns to Feb and everyone is playing desperate PO style hockey, the bigger player can enforce their will and win the 1on1 battles. If Hags plays with rich/cally, no one on top two lines is over 200 lbs save for Artie, who ply like he weighs 160.

  23. cw December 29th, 2011 at 6:57 am

    “And who the hell is Rupp to call ANYONE irrelevant?!?”


    hey! i wanted to say this! really… has Rupp done ANYTHING noticeable since return from the injury? meh….

    and did any of you guys hear Edzo saying that we are missing have of our D like Marc Stahl and *KURT* Sauer?! I thought that was pretty freaking stupid.

  24. have = half*


    you no like Ilya “The Universe” “man of many faces” “i read Russian classics that kids read in the 5th grade to seem smart to American crowd” Bryzgalov? c’mon, man! ;)

  25. The D has been considerably looser since Eminger went down.

    They’ve been mostly getting away with it, and everyone’s played very well relative to what they’re capable of, but there are a lot more close calls in the defensive zone.
    It’s also taken away from their breakouts, some of the fumbled recoveries back there.

    They’re going to lose a game once in a while, can’t get too spoiled.
    That said, last night, the ‘offense’ was horrible, the ‘power play’ was horrible, Brad Richards has certainly been horrible, and 24/7 was again, horrible.

    How many lame ass Xmas parties they going to kill time with?

    Still haven’t seen a single frame of Sather.

  26. Doodie Machetto on

    Pretty pathetic effort last night. Seemed like Callahan, Hagelin, half a game of Dubi, and then a bunch of bush-league, amateur-hour, Mickey-Mouse, clowns.

    Special thanks to Miami Pimp for inspiring my adjectives.

  27. Doodie Machetto on

    We no longer have a 3rd line. Dubi-Boyle-Mitchell and Fedotenko-Rupp-Prust are both 4th lines.

    Although, Richards is trying his best to fix that by playing his line into the gutter.

  28. Not only do I hate rainbows, I hate the way the Craps celebrate every goal they score like it’s a SC game 7 OT winner. So there!

  29. C3, I don’t hate you. But I will be upset if you’re still too hungover on the 2nd to come hang out with me.

  30. The soft Rangers defense (HAHAHAHA) still is 2nd in the NHL in GA/G.
    The pathetic offense did slip to 10th from 9th (definite cause for concern) in Goals/G.
    They are now on a 1 game major season turning losing streak. This team this year has been know to lose 3 straight in regulation (oh wait they haven’t).

    It’s amazing that same people who complain about the over-reactions of the Coach are the same that trash everyone after 1 loss when the team is stil 9-4-1 in their busiest month game-wise of the season. If some of you guys were coaches the roster would change every game.

  31. ” If some of you guys were coaches the roster would change every game.”

    yes, but one player would be in in every game! AVERY! ;)

  32. Good morning all! C3, I’m with Sally!

    Carp, I’ll pass on the game (I’m over it) but love points 10, 12, 13 and 14. Also loved Cally’s comment about the sunglasses :) And I thought the same thing about Lav with Giroux.

    Way too much boring Flyers for my taste, but I liked this episode a lot. Could have done without the model parade at Bryant Park though.

  33. Stranger Nation on

    Does one dare deal Gabby for a prototypical RW power forward who may not net 45 Gs but will score mid 30s, is younger, not cost 7.5 in cap room and be a PP ‘crease presence’. Need to trade value to get value. Gabby has been great this season, but trade value may never be higher than now.

    Was last year the abberation (no center, injured…) or are we faced with up one year, down the next?

  34. Doodie Machetto on

    HW, there are of course, two sides to every coin.

    Where do you think the Rangers GA/G is without Lundqvist’s ridiculous body of work this season?

    Also, while it’s all well and good that they are playing well right now, how do you think they are playing in April if Girardi continues to play 27:30 a night, McDonagh 25 a night, and MDZ 23 a night? So while our top guys have been carrying the load, the bottom guys need to be good enough to be given more responsibility so they can share the load or they will be carrying the load in the playoffs when Girardi’s body finally breaks down.

  35. first of all … what mid-30s scoring young prototypical power forward with a smaller cap hit is any team going to trade for Gaborik?

  36. Haven’t stopped shivering since I got off the plane in Hartford. tbw and I are visiting our grandchildren ( or I should say girls) and they’re all bright beauties who are taller than I am. One jut returned from Hungary visiting her relatives, another is headed for Texas ( Longhorns) after the holidays, the youngest is a true artist and writer, and returns to Pratt on LI, One is going to a swim meet, and the tallest of them all returns to Pace but not before celebrating her Birthday today)….it,s such a joy to be around them,and now I have two daughters facng the “empty nest” syndrome…….tbw and I can both attest to the moments of loneliness that we endure..but I do have two grandsons living nearby us in Florida, but none of them follow hockey…..you can lead a horse etc., but I hope that Kurt has more luck in wishing for a new PP coach than I have had for the past 4 years. From the opening whistle last night I was concerned about theRangers, as they simply did not have anything near the energy that it required, and ai foresaw doom at the end of the 60 minutes…and so it came to pass.

  37. Hi mama! Sorry I texted you about MDZ’s sweater at 10:13 last night… I know that’s WAY past your bedtime.

    C3, you’re just gonna have to deal with it!

  38. Last night is ok if it’s just one game. It will be a problem if it becomes a pattern. I think it’s just one game and we move on.

    This was the best 24/7 so far. Rangers come off with so much more personality. Love all the things that Carp mentioned but have one more: between 2nd and 3rd vs Flyers, Laviolette totally disrespects the Rangers that they are going to cruise in the 3rd and that the Flyers will score 4. Cut to Torts telling the team to keep attacking. Great stuff and shows who the much better coach is. Don’t know how there can be any more Torts haters out there.

  39. Doodie Machetto on

    SN, I assume you’re talking about Bobby Ryan, and to me, the answer is no. Ryan is showing this year that he isn’t a guarantee to pot 30.

    Besides, players like Ryan are very dependent on having a good center. They cannot take control of a game on their own.

  40. Doodie – Here’s why I disagree about the wearing down thought. 1. They have the chance of getting Staal and Sauer back which certainly changes this conversation. 2. Plenty of teams have relied on their top end defense to play big minutes and won (Stevens, Neidermayer and Dano for starters). 3. I am not worried about their conditioning as night in and night out they prove to be the best conditioned team in the NHL.

  41. also, Girardi played 24:34 last year. I don’t think the current number is off the charts. and that should get better as other D-men return.

  42. Wicky asked a good question last night about why NYR seem so off against teams
    like STL and now WASH.

    Think it’s cause the Rangers team concept and D is so good it keeps them in every game, gives them a chance to score a few and win. Against real good teams or in bigger games where they’re jacked up, their D and goaltending gets even more stingy, and they’ve managed victories, often with the goals coming from terrific individual efforts.

    But against teams with standout speed or size or both, their lack of offense and physicality up front becomes apparent. Case in point last night. WASH is weak in net and has no commitment to team D, yet we couldn’t get any sustained offense.
    The lines appear ill-fitting and lacking talent.

    On balance they’ve been real good, but unless something changes, Stepan and Anisimov will never be more than 20 goal scorers (if that, in AA’s case).
    They do not shoot the puck nearly enough.

    And Olivia could weaken anybody’s knees, but lately Richards looks like a worse skater than Wolski.

  43. Imagine how bad Richards could look without Hags and Cally. Get Kreider up here ASAP, and have him play with Dubi to keep him goin. And between Boyle, Wolski, Aves and EC see who sticks and trade whoever doesnt for draft picks. Torts likes the 4th liners too much to do anything with them.
    Hey Piere I forgot which school did Stepan and McD go to? Either tell us about on ice or in between bench stuff or keep your byfugelin mouth shut. But I agree with hitting Semin early to get him rattled. Tough game Craps were due regroup for friday.
    Carp, not the best side on you for the cameras but I like your positioning on Torts, up tight but to the outside, stay out of the kill zone. Get one of those bad angle goals you love.
    Should have had a whole episode just from the Richards ugly sweater party. Still not enough Rangers especially when they have omitted 0 Flys games but probably 2 Rangers games. Would have rather have seen ANY family christmas, over the Bryzgolov nonsense.
    Is Staal back yet?

  44. As a Caps fan, that was one of the better efforts the team has put up this year. Unreal how many times they have mailed it in. No one seems to care..Ovechkin is mailing it in on the ice, and in the locker room. The funny thing is, the Caps could get hot and win the southeast…No in DC will care come playoff time as well if they make it…

  45. No prob Sally! I was awake watching show, but didn’t have phone with me …

    C3, how much time do you need to recover from New Years anyway…the game’s on the 2nd you know……:)

  46. Wow, back to trading Gaborik again? Just like last year he’s got that pesky NTC that prevents trades. And Bobby Ryan’s PPG total for the season…zero.

  47. Stranger, before everyone hear jumps ugly with you -and I recognize too it sounds nuts to even think of dealing a guy on pace for 50 goals – let me just say that’s not a crazy question.

  48. Noah-aal-olski-auer-inger, 29 on

    Watching Torts’ pregame and intermission speeches makes me want to run through a Byfuglien wall!

    Also, how about the brief moment between Cally and Torts during intermission of the Flyers game when they talked about defensive positioning, ending with Torts going into the other room to check the video?

    Love those little moments.

  49. Time for Brad Richards to stop focusing on hot actresses and start focusing on the cold reality of him stinking for large stretches at a time.

    Yeah, that was a nice move by Dubi to jump over that guy and hit the net. Credit where credit is due.

  50. We’re down on Gaborik again? Sheesh! One loss guys. 1 Meesly point behind the domination-nation Bruins for First in the Conference. Come on!

    Charlie – since you were mean to HWirth (who is my boy) I will tell you why that goal was Richards fault. Hagelin was the Winger who was offsides when Richards pulled up at the line. The Capitals, as predicted by Mr. Doodie Machetto, had gone into a sort of trap at their blue line. Hagelin, being an intelligent young player, knew that the best chance you have to beat that Defense is to dump the puck into the offensive zone, chase it down, and set up. Being the little speed demon that he is we was racing to get into the zone and get behind the defender (since this isn’t soccer that wouldn’t be offsides as long as the puck was in the zone). Hagelin pulled up seeing Richards doing God knows what with the puck as he decided to hold the puck, rather than dump it in as he should have, and instead Richards tried to deke 4 Capitals players at the line who easily stripped Beaver-Teeth of the puck and had an easy breakaway, since everyone on the ice wearing a Rangers sweater had their momentum driving into the zone to retrieve the puck that Richards should have dumped in.

  51. Even in the years he’s been hurt. 08-09 17gp 13-10-23 (pt. a game player)
    06-07 48gp 30-27-57 (30 goals in half a season)

    Here’s a better one and I don’t even like to use this stat. Did you know the only year in his career he was a minus player was his rookie year when he was a -6. Since then he’s been a double digit plus player 6 times including this year.

  52. Mama, C3’s just playing hard to get. He loves having the ladies begging to hang out with him. It’s true.

  53. I mean, yeah even if Ryan was scoring more or basically scoring at the same clip as Gaborik how does trading one for the other change the team that much? You get 40+ from a rugged playing North American or 40+ from a Christmas tree toting Europansy. And even if one of them has the particular talent to do it with a man advantage, I’d actually prefer the guy that produces more at even strength since that’s where the majority of the game is played.

    Now if it was trading a 20+ goal guy for a 30+ goal guy, that would make more sense.

  54. We lose one game and the conversation is trade gaborik for ryan? And Brad Richards is terrible with his 12 goals (a bunch of them in clutch situations) because his defensive play stinks. Well, you had to know that going in. He’s never exactly been a Selke candidate. You take the good and the bad with him.

    Ehhh, At least it’s better than talking about 4th and 5th liners.

  55. lol Sally! guilty as charged! :P

    no but seriously..i won’t get home until midday Jan. 1st and that is when the real party starts! This is why i dont know what state i’ll be in…

  56. If it was during the day off between the Devils and first Isles game then he had 1 vs the Isles in game 1, 1 vs the Flyers, 1 vs the Isles in game 2 and none last night.


  57. That is true HWirth. It’s better than talking about 4th and 5th lines. I still think Richards needs to be kicked in the crotch. He has had a few pretty miserable games in a row and I think the lack of offense generated on the PP (which he is supposed to Captain/QB) is evidence.

  58. Manny – There is no argument there. Richards needs to be producing offensively because it is a given based on his career his defense isn’t going to make up for lack of points. The fact the he’s struggling on the PP might be effecting his overall game. But, I’m not jumping off the bandwagon on that signing either.

  59. I don’t disagree Rod.

    But what if I put it in these terms.

    Getting Staal back into the lineup probably means a bunch fewer goals against vs having guys like Woywitka/Bickel/Strahlman. Let’s peg that at say 10 fewer goals against.

    A hot steak (it’s been known to happen before) for a couple of guys like Dubinsky/Boyle/Prust at various points in the season, collectively bumps them up an extra 10 goals over their current expected production. And given that their expected production pro-rated from 40% of the season is pretty meager, 10 goals of excess production doesn’t seem that tough to achieve.

  60. Doodie Machetto on

    Carp, 3 minutes a night is a HUGE difference, especially as they climb into the higher numbers. If he averaged 27:30 last year, would you say that 30:30 a night was fine? It’s only 3 minutes.

    I will drop MDZ from the discussion of over use because he is getting a large portion of PP time which puffs up his minute total. I think we can all agree that PP minutes are “softer” minutes.

    HW, nobody on the Devils played more than 24:30 a night in 2000 or 2003 (NHL.com’s stats only go back to 97-98 so I can’t check on their first Cup). Nieds led the Devils in both years. He did 24:30 in ’03 and 24:20 in 2000, 3 mins of which was on the PP in 2000, 4 mins in 2003. By comparison, Girardi is playing 27 with only 2:30 on the PP.

    Stevens averaged about 23 minutes a game both years. Dano had 18 in 2000 and only 15:36 in 2003.

    Going back, here are the approximate ice times for the top 2 D for each team that has won the Cup since the lockout:

    Boston: Chara 25:26 (3 mins PP), Seidenberg 23:30 (2 mins PP).

    Chicago: Keith 26:30 (3 Mins PP), Campbell 23 (3 mins PP).

    Pittsburgh: Gonchar 25 (6 mins PP), Letang 21 (3:30 PP). Crosby and Malkin both had more TOI/G than Letang.

    Detroit: Lidstrom 27 (5 mins PP), Rafalski 24 (4:30 PP).

    *Anaheim: Niedermayer 27:30 (6 mins PP), Pronger 27:30 (6 mins PP)*

    Carolina: Bret Hedican was the only defenseman over 20/g. Four forwards had more minutes.

    The only one that sticks out here is Anaheim, but their guys were averaging 22 or less when you factor in the PP time. Besides, if you’re comparing Girardi and McDonagh to Pronger and Niedermayer, then we just can’t continue discussing this because we are on different wavelengths in terms of quality of players.

    The bottom line is this is not a sustainable number of minutes for our top defensemen to win a Stanley Cup. Sure, you can argue that when Staal comes back, the load will be lessened a bit, but you’re putting a lot of eggs into a delicate basket. How many games was Crosby back?

  61. bottom line boyle and prust have been horrible this year. yes they are nice guys but that does not help on the scoreboard. I thought Prust would be a responsible, tough guy who gets 10 – 12 goals. I do not think that will happen. Boyle is playing 3rd line minutes and he cannot score and makes quite a few mistakes/turnovers.

    Rich Peverly or Kelly the Bruins 3rd/4th liners are better players then these guys…….

  62. Yes, hot steaks. I’m sure the 6 or so million those 3 guys make can probably buy a few hot steaks.

  63. Whoah whoah, HWirth. I didn’t say I wasn’t a Richards fan. I don’t recommend kicking people in the crotch that I don’t like. I like Richards. I think the signing was great. I even like the front-loaded Contract so when he’s a dinosaur (in hockey years) he costs $1M. All Smart. I just think he’s been “off” for a few games.

  64. why do all guys when they talk about concussions mention crosby’s relapse? why not bergeron who has played the last 2+ years with no issues or Giroux who missed 3 or 4 games??

    Staal may play the next 10 years with no issues, we never know.

    Shea Weber is out and Nashville is in a panic, Staal is not Shea Weber yet but the guy has not played 1 minute and the Rangers have not exactly floundered.. My point is the d is not there problem and minutes will be better distributed if or when staal and sauer come back..

    our problem is offense from the forwards….

  65. For some reason I stll believe Richards is recovering from some nasty bug….Nothing medical to support it, but his skating went south too abruptly after theirb game against Phoenix….

  66. Carp – Exactly, they still have Staal, Sauer and Eminger all potentially coming back and if any of those situations take a turn for the worse they will have plenty of LTIR space to make an additional move for a rental defense, which there are a bunch of this deadline.

  67. Carp,

    Not sure I understood what you were saying. U mean if Dubi were scoring?
    Yeah, he and Boyle at last year’s clip and we’re not having this conversation (though they still must have that righty PP shot).

    CT, you’re 100% correct. But the margin of error is still WAY less than it should be considering how good the goaltending is, how much they give it up on D and blocking shots, how good the pk is (did I see Callahan think about blocking an OV slapper with his back last night?!!!! He could freakin’ die!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!)


    That’s been my whole point all along. They’ve been missing an offensive player all year.

    Thing is, it may well be possible to add said player without subtracting anyone of significance (or a top prospect).

    You can say probably goodbye to your No. 1, which will probably be between 22-27 overall.
    But we have some people that have to be moved or we’re losing them for nothing.

    Still some interesting possibilities out there, and I don’t think Ryan is one of them.

  68. stuart, the D hasn’t floundererd from an absolute goals against measure but both Lundqvist and Biron have been spectular in net. Both goalies are above their career average save percentages and the Rangers have shown a tendency to get out-shot this season. Just logically, having Staal and Sauer replace Bickel/Woywitka/Strahlman is a big plus for a few reasons. As you said, primarily it gives a better distribution of minutes to the top 4 guys. And while Staal will never be confused with Paul Coffey in terms of offense, the past couple of seasons he’s been adding a nice little bit of offense. 30 points from a guy that plays some of the toughest minutes in the league is nothing to sneeze at.

  69. Doodie Machetto on

    “why not bergeron who has played the last 2+ years with no issues or Giroux who missed 3 or 4 games??”

    First of all, Bergeron missed some playoff games last year with a concussion. Second, if you are going to play that game, why not mention Savard, Lindros, Gagne, LaPerriere, or even Bergeron’s prior concussion struggles?

    ” My point is the d is not there problem and minutes will be better distributed if or when staal and sauer come back..”

    The problem is those are big “ifs.”

  70. Thanks, Carp. Keep me updated.

    Also, Carp. Maybe you missed it last night but I need you to cancel my HBO subscription when you cancel yours. If I forget my wife will kill me.

  71. Manny – This is why my cable bill goes directly to my cc so she doesn’t realize the price of Center Ice Package, HBO etc.

  72. Oh man, I keep asking for another Television for the bedroom so she can watch reality TV / Food Network and I can get Center Ice, a heating pad for my back and then never get off the couch. Ever.

  73. Gaborik isnt even our best player! so i wouldn’t trade him… i would trade Hank instead! Who needs an ELITE goalie when you can trade him for offense like in Washington… look how great they do with average goalkeeping and high offense… oh, wait…

  74. Doodie Machetto on

    Carp, his numbers didn’t drop when Sauer was in the lineup. Sauer has played in 19 games, more than half the games this season. Girardi topped 30 4 times in those games, over 28 in another 4 or 5 (wasn’t counting), and over 27 in another 4 or 5 (again wasn’t counting). This does not spell less minutes when another top 4 guy is in the lineup.

  75. But, I think with the emergence of Del Zaster as a top-4, if they get another top-4, his numbers will drop. i.e., if Staal comes back either he or McDonagh join the second pair … plus Girardi’s been getting some PP minutes, which he doesn’t really need, but which also aren’t hard minutes.

  76. I think Girardi’s TOI will change once he is taken off the PP and maybe someone else can take some PK duties from him.

  77. My friend who is a Caps fan told me that there were “Ovie Trade Rumors” floating around a statement by someone close to the team that said, “if the Caps lose to the Rangers, expect a MAJOR shakeup.”

    Why would they do that?

  78. Doodie Machetto on

    I still don’t like it. Half a season playing 27+, especially with how he plays… it just doesn’t bode well for the end of the season and the playoffs. That’s all I’m going to say. Likewise for McDonagh, who goes from 40 career NHL games playing 18:45 to a full season playing 25? I’m just really worried about how they handle it down the stretch.

  79. Doodie – I agree. It’s horrifying. Let’s just hope they are horses that can take it because we really have no other option right now.

  80. Doodie Machetto on

    Manny, they would not trade Ovechkin. Semin is the most likely player to be traded from their team, with the major hurdle being the difficulty in finding a trade partner who would take on the risk.

    OK all, be back later.

  81. Dead right Doodie.

    Been screaming about it but somehow Tort doesn’t hear.

    While we’re all enjoying this record (compiled in large measure to their contributions),

    that bill hasn’t come due yet.

  82. The minutes will even out IF we get Staal & Keith Sauer back + Girardi really shouldn’t be on the 1st PP unit so that will impact his minutes if/when Staal gets back. And it’s really crazy to start calling for trades and worrying about minutes played when it’s still December. THe team has played well over our expectations, boneheads, let’s be honest about that!!! Having said that, Dubi, Boyle & Prust haven’t contributed O-fensively!!! And our best D-man hasn’t played a minute!!! SO let’s all calm down, let the next month pass and see if you still wanna trade Gabby, if Richards still has a flu bug effecting his skating, if our PP improves, etc, etc, etc!!!! Can we just enjoy the early success without being so cynical?

  83. Yea I agree, Doodie. It’s NUTS. Could you imagine what would happen to their fan base? Semin is an albatross. Bad reputation all around. He needs another Russian who plays really hard around him who can motivate him. Ovechkin ain’t really doing it right now. So my assumption is that we will see Semin in a KHL jersey before long.

    Maybe Sather will give them Hank for Semin. Then we can all jump out a window.

  84. The minutes will even out IF we get Staal & *Keith Sauer* back


    Great one, Artie. I totally forgot about the “Keith Sauer” comment last night. I was all caught up in “angle geometrically” and “burrow”

  85. PLUS, McDonuagh, Sauer, Staal, MDZ & Girardi are all 26 years old (Girardi) and under!!! We’re not talking about a D corps of Willie Huber and Doug Lidster!!!

  86. Artie- What’s the fun in enjoying the winning when the board can go into a panic after their first loss in 6 games? Trade Gabby? Richards stinks? The 7-14 forwards don’t score enough! Too much TOI! (sorry Doodie, I usually got your back but not on this one)! Staal and Sauer’s recoveries are glass half empty situations. I’d include Dubi not scoring but you know…

  87. Bwahahahahaha. He is actually one of the only *real* Caps fans in that he doesn’t wear a stupid Red Ovechkin shirt.

  88. Looks better without bold.

    My friend who is -a- the only Caps fan told me that there were “Ovie Trade Rumors”

  89. True Carp, I forgot to factor that in. The reason I asked was my non-hockey watching co-workers have been watching 24/7 and they LOVE Torts. I’m sure his stock has risen around the league during this series.

  90. Manny – What’s funny about that situation is Ted Leonsis basically took over an “expansion” team down there once they moved from Landover to Downtown DC. Before the move and Ovie, they had a very small fanbase that was more suburban not that much off from like a Hartford and he tried to create a big city team with Ovie and all the hype and the Rock the Red stuff. I give him credit for creating a fan base, even if 80% either are new to the sport or rooted for another team before moving to the area.

  91. enough of this down on gaborik crap. the guy has been nothing short of world class this year. its one game and yes the turnovers did them in but as long as they work hard and limit there mistakes we should be fine.

    the concern should be THIS DEL ZASTER OF A POWER PLAY.


    dont think i get enough props for the DEL ZASTER

  92. Oh totally. It’s great for hockey that their arena is jumping at all times. That’s great stuff. Also, great to see Ovie on ESPN commercials pretending to be a spy. All good for hockey.

    Are you saying the Whalers didn’t work? I went to many games when I was a kid. Drove in from the Rural areas of Connecticut to cheer on Zarley Zalapski!

  93. Leonsis also is the idiot who gives press credentials to anybody who writes a blog or anything on the internet, no matter how illegitimate. So, if you don’t want to buy Capitals tickets, start up a blog and you can sit in the pressbox for 41 games.

    and Leonsis, internet genius, plays in an arena named after Verizon, where there is consistently the worst wireless signal in all of sports arenas.

  94. I’ll say this about that Verizon Center. It’s artificial in that they amp the music to beyond (where’s gross the heavy metal fan for this reference) any Slayer, Metallica concert but the fans get loud behind it. The playoff series 3 years ago was the loudest building I’ve been in until Hank shut them out and then it was quiet.

  95. I will not be able to make it, Carp. Neither will Mannu. My rehearsal dinner is tomorrow night and my wedding is Saturday. Last few minutes of freedom, boys!

  96. Why is it panic? Why can’t it just be concern, because the team isn’t right?

    I’ll say it. They will not sustain the winning pace they’ve been on playing this way,
    risking life n limb every night to block every shot, getting A+ goaltending, and too little scoring.

    Meant I holler about it here, and he doesn’t hear, naturally.

    But I’m not the only one he doesn’t listen to, Carp.

  97. Carp – That is all true about that team. The Wifi sucks. Every Tom Dick and Harry gets credentialed. And the Press Box is in another galaxy and when they used to wear those ugly black uniforms the announcers had no chance telling one player from the next the numbers all looked the same.

  98. Leonsis is a cool & interesting dude. Played against him many years ago.

    Not being the hockey market NY is, they tried everything they could to increase interest and really make that franchise go.

    They almost pulled it off, but like I’ve been saying, it’s a fragile thing sometimes.

    I agree they should have better internet connections.

  99. THANK YOU CARP! I didnt think Bryzgolov was funny to begin with.. How hot was Prusty’s GF tho… wow!

  100. Congrats Manny. I didn’t realize. Here’s the important question? Is she broken in on the Rangers fanatism thing yet? Because that’s where it gets tricky. “Sorry hon, can’t go for dinner, watching the rangers game” I was very lucky that I met my wife through someone in the NHL so she kinda knew early I might be a little sports obsessed.

  101. AFP, I agree, more on the second than the first.

    BANJ, I’m going to squeeze into Del Zotto’s sweater. Did you BANJ about four or five threads back this morning?

  102. Actually, HWirth her parents were at all home games in 1994 and she stayed up at home watching with her babysitter. She’s pretty into it. She will argue with anyone that Messier is a better player than Gretzky because of Character and Leadership.

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

    Morning ILB and all!!

    This steak is making me thirsty!!

    I find it difficult for rupp to have a “talk” with erskine (who has a big shot btw) with his whopping 5 minutes of ice time. I do agree that he should have, but just saying it is hard to do in 5 minutes of ice time. That is on the coach to get him out there for that match up and prior to doing that “tap” rupp on the shoulder and let him know it is go time.

    I have said it all season, minutes need to be more evenly distributed (this team has players that seem to run out of steam every season) and the 4th line needs to play more, no matter who is on it!

    repost from last night..

    Wicky©”suspend the hittee..LW compliant version” December 29th, 2011 at 2:32 am
    Not even sure if it’s worth evaluating this late, but what the hell.

    They lost a game 4 to 1 on a bad play by boyle, two bad plays by michael busto, and a bad play by mcdonut. Michael busto has been playing well for the most part this season and mcdonut has been nothing short of very good for the season and boyle has played better lately.

    This game reminded me a whole helluva lot like the st louis game. A team that seems to thrive on rough games and fighting majors and such seems to just not have it when the other team is bringing it to them.

    Just like the blues game I kept waiting for a scrap or something to get some life into the team and one just never happened…not sure why that is.

    I am going against the grain here for sure, but I think the 4th line needs more time not less, but just my opinion.

    In the end, a not so great game by our boys, but just ONE game.

    Night aasens!!

  104. Yeah , I was trying to figure out how to type in RED, and to see what other things worked, so I use vacated threads. Heck, I’ve even tried it on the old “Coat Check” thread.

  105. Manny – Well, first of all with that statement she’s a total keeper. There is a difference between greatest player and the guy I’d start my team with and she’s right on that one. TGO is the greatest player ever but I’d start my team with Mess then Orr then TGO.

    Sounds like you are in good shape. Now I’ll teach you my next trick. Short Anniversary weekend gateaways to a nice city that just happens to have the Rangers playing there. Worked for Montreal last season and Boston the prior. Nice anniversary dinner followed or after a nice Rangers road win.

  106. I am looking for the Third epIsode Of 24 7… Here on the iPad it seems that i have i fewer possibilities to find anything on Youtube, where i usually find them….
    Do you Guys have a Link where i can find it somewhere else or post a Link from yoUtube, where i can See the Whole Episode ?

  107. That’s a GREAT idea, HWirth. Great thinking. She totally does not mind going to games. In fact, last time we saw the Rangers play the Phlyers she screamed at a kid who was being obnoxious. And she’s Puerto Rican/Jewish and She’s beautiful. I don’t know what happened in my life for this to somehow be given to me. I just run with it.

    My Wife actually likes every single sports team I like. I guess it’s a good thing that my Hartford Whalers abandoned me for Sunny North Carolina so I could become a Rangers fan. She is Yankees, Giants, Rangers, Knicks.

  108. _BANJ_ : I have not been able to find other colors. I would love to be able to do other colors though.

  109. Manny – My wife is the all-time trooper. The day after our wedding, we planned on going to Yankees opening day (last one in the old stadium) it got rained out which worked out perfectly for a nice lunch followed by a Rangers home game.

  110. OK …

    Anybody who wants to trade Gaborik: PASS THE PIPE TO ME!

    I love the Whalers song! Great link, CTB. I’m making the NHL’94 version my phone ring now…

    Manny, are any boneheads invited to the wedding?

  111. That’s awesome, HWirth.

    Italics is using an underscore on either side of the word. Dash is strikethrough. @ is Red. * is bold.

  112. FIOS customers: For New Year’s weekend, it’s all about hockey. The NHL Network, usually only available to customers who subscribe to our FiOS TV Extreme or FiOS TV Ultimate packages, is free for all FiOS TV customers from Dec. 29 through Jan. 2.

    There’s also movie channel previews in January.

  113. @BroadStBull To me, it’s 95/5 that Bryz starts WC. But if Bob stands on his head tonight.. ? #”

    That’s a tweet from one of their really good beat writers. Now, when you pay a goalie 9 yrs 51 mil should it be a question if he’s healthy who is playing one of the marquee games of the year (besides that it’s the WC. It’s an impt. divisional game)

  114. NYR- no Boneheads are invited. It’s a bonehead free event. There will be plenty of Rangers fans though.

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

    Wholly crap manny and mannu!!

    Congrats to you both and that is AWESOME!!!!

  116. staal avg 25 minutes a game last year first on the rangers. the guy is 24, he can play big minutes. tha twill help girardi and mcdonagh for sure.

    again there issues are offense. yes henrik’s save % is up this year but marginally. maybe the shots are from non prime areas etc.also the whole defense is a year older in a good way not in the over the hill way..

    forwards who can score on the rangers are; richards, gabby, aa, cally, dubi, hagelin, stepan, and ???? they need 2 more guys who can net 20 or so….feds, boyle, prust, mitchell, etc(not really)……

  117. Manny, I have probably congratulated you enough…

    Stiffen up here and let’s be ready to go…

    Btw, did anyone else notice Lav use the word “jam”? I think he stole that from Torts. What a Boucher bag….

  118. Doodie Machetto on

    Congrats Manny, I wish you all the best this weekend.

    Wicky, I’ll look for your add when I actually get a chance to play.

    My birthday was December 8 and I’ve had a total of 2 hours of playing time since. Not looking good for tonight or tomorrow either. I’m hoping to put in a couple of hours this weekend.

  119. wicky, you mean purse?

    Manny, we’re not all invited? WTB? I arranged for a couple of buses to the reception.

    which really good beat writer would that be, HW?

  120. Stranger Nation on

    Remember these stats re Gabby – last 2 PO series, 11 games, 3 pts., -3

    And the Caps roster last year beat our assen pretty good in the POs, when it really counts.

    Until we get help up front from the farm, we are destined to be a scratch and claw D oriented team. Love the Jam, b@lls, and bite in reg season, but the goal is to be playing in late April, not December’s darlings.

    Very willing to wait if the strategy is to develop the pups, but if you could trade a current asset that could yield long term success, would you do it? Over the next 3 years we will have to beat the Bruins to get to the finals. We currently do not match up well with them.

    Torts is a freaking coaching genius riding this club through the first 2 laps. Just hope we have enough for the backstretch.

  121. The Rangers have a lot of tradeable assets….but they don’t _need_ to make any moves…

    We could use another scoring wing….Kreider is on the way…perhaps the biggest wildcard….when exactly does he join the Rangers AND can he step in on the top lines immediately?

    We could use another playmaker….MZA is healing up…Could definitely add a spark to the top-6 down the stretch….The guys is better than he was last year and hope he has the chance again to show what he’s got…

    We will have more bang and bite on the blueline….Stahl and Sour are recovering, right now, just fine…Couple of key blue chip guys coming back…Huuuge

    Perhaps one move that makes sense is dealing for Prospal…I love the guy…but I don’t think the Rangers are in the market to make a big splash for Iggy or Ryan…No way…They don’t want to blow up this team…at least, I don’t think so….

    By the time April rolls around, this team will be ready to show what it has for a playoff run. This team is dramatically better than any team put together by the Rangers in the past 10 years…

  122. Stranger,

    And the other two playoff series he played in before that he was essentially a point per game player, so he can or can’t be a playoff performer.

    Then there’s someone like Ryan who had a good playoff series one year, so-so his other year and was a non-factor in his 1st playoff series.

    I just don’t see the point of making at best a lateral trade, especially for someone who hasn’t necessarily proven himself to be a force in the postseason either. Gaborik’s goals are important now in keeping the Rangers in the hunt to claiming one of the top 4 seeds in the East, which is a position they haven’t been in for a long time. I’ll give him another playoff run in a Ranger uniform before considering him unable to step it up when the games really count.

    And I hardly say the Caps beat the Rangers pretty good last year in the first round. 2 OT games, the other 2 Caps wins were by 2 goal margins.

    The Rangers beat the Bruins in 3 of 4 last season. And it’s not like the Bruins romped their way to the Cup either, 3 of their 4 series went to 7 games. I have my doubts that they’ll be the gold standard in the East for 3 more years given the age of Thomas and Chara.

  123. DOODIE:

    Perfect use of my most favorite adjectives of all time … NYRangers were complete weaksauces last night.

  124. CTB, Bruins will probably be pretty good for a while…they have plans beyond Thomas and Chara

    For instance….Tuukka Rask is very good and Dougie Hamilton is being hailed as the next coming (still a huge unknown but tremendous upside)…

  125. Doodie Machetto on

    I vaguely remember there being a nationally televised game being heavily built up and then one team sending out its backup goaltender. Anyone remember what I’m talking about?

  126. Hey Carp-

    I wanted to vote in the poll, but you didn’t have a box for “all of the above”, so I couldn’t vote! Seriously, how could anyone pick just one guy on that list?

  127. Stranger Nation on

    Let me amend to tradable assets above 26. Just 4 – gabby, Hank, B Rich, girardi. Of those, Gabby is the only one to deal based on value and team needs.

    I hope B Rich has the flu, because his defensive play has been lacking. He needs a stud LW to complete that line.

  128. NYR_FAN,

    They’re a deep team for sure. Much better equipped up front for the long haul than on the blueline. Most of their heavy minute D are above 30. Still, 3 years is a long time for a team to stay dominant in the cap era. And there’s always a decent amount of luck that goes into the playoffs. Who knows, a different bounce here or there vs Montreal in Game 7’s OT and Boston doesn’t win anything. Vancouver would still probably have been set on fire though.

  129. Stranger Nation on

    CTB – I hear ya – Hoping Gabby can be that guy, those other series are now in the past.

    Re Bruins, they take nasty to another level come PO time as their roster is built for the Spring. I don’t see us matching up with them physically in a seven game series, although it would be fun to watch. Reg season wins mean diddly in the second season. If refs call it tight we could beat them, if not…

  130. Let me amend to tradable assets above 26. Just 4 – gabby, Hank, B Rich, girardi. Of those, Gabby is the only one to deal based on value and team needs.


    Not quite sure what this means. Tradeable as in players that will return a big haul?Otherwise Richards and Gaborik have NTCs and obviously Lundqvist isn’t going anywhere. And yeah, I wouldn’t mind the Rangers adding another goal scorer, but not at the cost of subtracting out their current leading goal scorer.

  131. No question….they didn’t exactly dominate their way to the finals…They had to grind it out…

    The luck and the bounces are part of what makes Playoff hockey great…hopefully some go the Rangers way this season….

  132. By the way, when I played some hockey, I noticed the chin strap on my helmet was very uncomfortable whenever you moved your head. It would pull on your neck. So, I used to keep it loose, also. Maybe they need to take a cue from football, and put a chin cup on the strap so it stays in that one position all the time.

  133. Yes the Bruins have risen their game in the playoffs (2011), they’ve also choked in spectacular fashion (2010) and been upset by a feisty underdog (2009).

    They’re a good team, I’m not arguing against that. But given the parity in the league these days, it’s not beyond comprehension that a lot of playoff series can be very evenly played. And with the team the Rangers look to be building, I’d give them a fighting chance against the Bruins over the next few seasons.

  134. mmm Manny regarding your 11:06 am post

    “Being the little speed demon that he is we was racing to get into the zone and get behind the defender … Hagelin pulled up seeing Richards doing God knows what with the puck”

    Hagelin was already in the O zone trying to get out, Richards was trying to maintain possession until Hags cleared the zone.

  135. Not yet CCCP. They’re still waiting for Willie Mitchell to find his way to the doctor’s office to take his physical to completel the trade. He’s next on the waiting list though.

  136. Everyone is entitled to a bad game once in a while. Just didnt have it last night and Caps played well thru the neutral zone. Lookiing forward to tomorrow night. Lets Go Rangers.

  137. Boom Boom Bathgate on

    CTB: Re: “The Bruins are a good team.” Well, no one is saying they are a “great team,” but they are absolutely the class of the National Hockey League right now. Vancouver is the one team within shouting distance of them at this time. The rest are soft pickings for the Bruins.

    Boston is strong everywhere, and off the chart when it comes to PP defense – ONE PP goal allowed the entire month of December. Rather imposing.

  138. you are so right on point #9 above Carp. even in the local senior leagues, it is the same. guys would rather look cool than protect themselves by looking a little dorky with a tight chinstrap.

    it shows that injury problems in the NHL cannot be diminished until the PLAYERS smarten up and become part of the solution.

  139. Absolutely, CCCP. He is an absolute monster. Best of the best right now…

    Crosby is unreal, as well. But, even when they were both healthy, it was Malkin that got the Conn Smythe when the won the Cup…

  140. Doodie Machetto on

    Kind of out of left field, but remember when Islanders fans were all jazzed because they were drafting the guy who broke Gretzky’s single season goal scoring record for Ontario juniors (ignoring that he played in 3 more games and Gretzky also had about 50 more assists in that same season)?

    Well now Tavares is 21 and on his way to another 25 goal, 65 point season. In the season that Gretzky turned 21, he set the NHL single season records in goals, assists, and points, becoming the first and only player ever to crack 200 points. The assist and points records he set were breaking records that he had set the previous season. And he also scored the fastest 50 goals in NHL history (39 games).

    Your move, John.

  141. So Fedotenko is everyone?s whipping boy this year? The guy makes 1.4 million to contribute 20-25 points a year and play 3rd/4th line minutes as a defensive forward who blocks shots and helps on the PK. The fact that people seem to want him to be Wayne Gretzky just makes me laugh.

    This reminds me why I hate coming around here after losses. One loss after winning 5 in a row and everyone wants half the team to be cut or traded and Torts to be fired. If I didn?t know any better, I?d think most of those people know absolutely nothing about hockey.

  142. Doodie Machetto on

    NYR, that was a couple of years ago. When Crosby went down with his concussion, he was hands down the best player in the world.

  143. Doodie – I get what you are saying but I’d really wish people would put into perspective hockey numbers. To compare any of the numbers from a time period where 90% of the goalies would not be good enough to be backups in today’s NHL with equipment that is minuscule compared to the military armor of today it’s simple unfair to the current players.

    Put Tavares on the ice with goalies like Glen Hanlon and he’ll score plenty more goals.

    I’m sorry but the goalies of today are 100% more athletic, dynamic and skilled not to mention diverse (Fins, Swedes, Russians)

  144. Watch some of the goals from the 1980’s pre Patrick Roy, Brodeur, Hasek. Goalies are 15-20 feet out of the crease standing upright and give up large chunks of open net angles.

  145. JonnyD- you should be used to it by now…Try to have fun with it. The good news is, it seems that people who REALLY make decisions know what do lately…

  146. And I’ll be honest about this but I hate giving credit to anything non North American Hockey but to be fair the Finnish influence alone on Goaltending alone would have changed the goal totals.

  147. I’m looking at hockeydb (the greatest of all hockey websites) at the 81-82 season looking at goaltending. 2 things stand out. No goalie played 60+ games like they do today and 2. most of these guys played either had short lived careers or were in 2 goalie systems and never dominated.

  148. Doodie Machetto on

    HW, fair, but compare Gretzky’s numbers to those of his contemporaries. He had 65 points more than the guy below him (Bossy). He had 28 more goals than the guy below him (Bossy), and 27 assists more than the guy below him (Stastny). He blew them all out of the water. So debate numbers all you want, but compared to his contemporaries, he was a God.

  149. don’t minimize anything that Gretzky did, because compared to the best players of his time, he was the most dominant athlete in the history of team sports.

    ilb, did Chelios work out with Charles Atlas in the 1850s? And Izzy?

  150. Doodie – I don’t disagree on Gretzky’s numbers being outrageous even in an outrageous time, it’s more of a today vs. yesterday deal. The numbers from the early 80’s till the time of Roy, Brodeur, Hasek, Richter, Kiprusoff, Khabibulin etc. are very bloated.

  151. HWirth- I’m afraid you will have to give credit to even more non North American Hockey. Last 15 years- 8 Art Ross Trophy winners were not North Americans (including last 4 years in a row), and 7 Rocket Richard Trophy winners were from Europe…

  152. NYR FAN hit it right on the button. The equipment makes these goaltenders that much better than goalies of other eras. Imagine putting an extra five or six inches of equipment all around all sides of JD in 1979? Or Dryden?

  153. Doodie Machetto on

    Do you know how rare it is for a player to lead the league in goals AND assists? It’s only happened twice since Gretzky. Both were Lemieux, and in one of those two, he was tied for the assists lead with Gretzky.

    Gretzky did it 5 times, 4 of which were in a row.

  154. ilb, you mean eight Art Ross and seven Rocket Richard pansies. Don’t tell me there were North American Lady Byng winners!

  155. Doodie Machetto on

    HW, right, I think my point was more that Gretzky was having the all time greatest seasons ever, by any metric, while Tavares is just a pretty good player. He still has tons of potential, but for now he’s just pretty good.

    I’ll say this about his chances to reach that potential: not with Capuano as his coach.

  156. Ilb – Begrudgingly, guys like Malkin and Datsyuk have come over and been great and have not folded in the physicality of NHL playoffs. Ov still has to show me something. I should have qualified that statement with Eastern European players. I really don’t mind the Swedes and Fins. It’s really a Russian/Czech thing. Much like Don Cherry, at least I’m honest about it and you can then prove me wrong like ILB did.

  157. Like you guys were debating before Malkin, Stamkos, Datsyuk, Crosby etc.

    I’d take Stamkos and Crosby and probably be wrong in the end, but that’s ok. It’s like people who put ketchup over mustard on their hot dogs. They are wrong and should be banished for it but for them it tastes good.

  158. Thanks, Carp.

    Equipment technology has a lot to do with the speed of the game nowadays, not just on goalies…

    Also, remember that stick technology has allowed for much different types of velocity and torque on shots players can take…composite sticks are much different than aluminum or wood…those were used in the 80s and 90s…

  159. NYR_Fan – Funny you bring up those wood sticks. Was thinking of this.. If they finally go back to old softer pillow pads that they used to play in, one argument was more shoulder injuries and such from blocked shots. What if also went back to wood sticks. Would that soften the shots or lead to no offense? Just throwing it against the wall, if u will.

  160. I don’t think it’s even worth debating or discussing because there is so much big money invested in hockey equipment right now…those composite sticks can be $200-$400 each…Bauer, for example, won’t stop making them…

  161. Are we still debating Russian players we’d trade for?

    I’d back up the truck for Sergei Fedorov, mid to late 1990’s.

  162. teams don’t buy sticks, do they? i can’t believe the manufacturers don’t supply NHL players with their own sticks. if they don’t, they’re morons.

  163. Nah, the debate is over. But we can go on. Igir Larionov, at 177lbs, played almost 1000 NHL games. He was scared carcilloless! He won three SC by hiding under the bench. He only came out in 2008 to be inducted into HOF.

  164. My first customized jersey was a white Fedorov jersey for my 14th birthday. My first customized Rangers jersey was a white Leetch jersey for Christmas later that year.

  165. No, teams don’t buy sticks….the players get endorsements from the manufacturers Bauer, Easton, Reebok etc….which include sticks…

    It all gets paid for through the NHL somehow…

  166. That’s Igor of course…

    Anyway, it’s been a good day on the blog. I expected a lot more NNs and trolls. Mrs and I have a big annual holiday party for my residents tonight. It’s always fun. Got to go and prepare everything. Guess who will their bartender? Yup, yours truly. I always joke that it’s the only day they can boss me around.

  167. Carp – I am like 99% certain the organizations pays for the sticks. I remember the Isles (what else is new) having an issue during the lockout with an accountant getting in trouble for embezzling by writing fake checks to pay for the hockey sticks.

  168. Uh oh. Bartender Ilb is pretty dangerous! At least there will be plenty of doctors around for the chaos that’s sure to erupt…

  169. I’m just glad the Rangers (and Yankees, for that matter) don’t have such an annoyingly over-exaggerated PA announcer like the Caps.


  170. har de har….have fun ilb….watch those shots!!!

    Gotta run, later all!
    P.S. No to Ovie…..he’ll destroy our hotness quotient :)

  171. another example of how selfish jagr is. he did not go back to Pitt because he wants to get all the ice time on the PP playing the half wall. he knows that Malkin and Crosby play that spot, and he would not have gotten that ice time, so he went to Philly for more money and more PP time. talk about selfish.

    can’t wait to see him get booed and jeered tonight. he well deserves it.

  172. I believe players are endorsed, but they still pay something for sticks. Heatley mentioned he went through like $25k a year of sticks (120 or so of them). I’d assume he didn’t pay all 25k for them, but still paid most of it.

    And teams do buy sticks just to have for the coaches and as extras. RBK is the official sponsor so I’d assume most teams would have a ton of 11ks hanging around the locker room just incase.

  173. Um, what? Jagr has played in the slot on the PP too. He went to Philly because he thought he was a better fit there and they had a better chance to win the cup (which I would agree with). I don’t blame him for that.

  174. zero chance that Philly goes to a cup final without Pronger and Richards. they won’t get there with spacecase mr galaxy in net either.

  175. Boom Boom Bathgate on

    Wanting more money and more ice time is selfish? So let’s see, by inference I come up with: “Wanting less money and wanting less ice time is some kind of basic hockey player instinct and need, by contrast with the evolutionary spirit imbued in eveyone else on the planet.”

    Hey, whatever works for you.

  176. Boom Boom Bathgate on

    Fetisov, Fedorov, Larianov, Kozlov, Konstantinov – Not a bad little Russo-pansy core, there.

  177. With Jagr its all money, or he would not have left the NHL in the first place, but who cares he’s earning his money in Philly. They are very happy with him there for now, and he’s happy to be there for now.

  178. It is in my head CCCP, but not only there.

    Where it isn’t is in your head.

    But if/when it happens, don’t worry, the team puts out press releases.

  179. Hello Heads! What did I miss? Over 420 posts on a non-game day – Carp is rolling in dough!

    MickeyM and I had a mini-Bonehead gathering this afternoon – I almost had her sent down to Hartford with EC and “He Who Will Not Be Named” for personally attending our last 2 miserable losses, but she talked me out of the demotion…for now…..

  180. Boom Boom Bathgate on

    The only people who “hate” money don’t have any. Nor do they have a life of any consequence.

    What a crock of wasted emotion politicos and their lackeys try to put on the rest of us who actually have something suggestive of healthy self-esteem and don’t buy into their “guilt trip.”

    And it’s ok by me if entrepreneurs, who make the quality of life better for all of us, reap the reward for their service to the human race, countless times over. What I am saying is that I will take Bill Gates any day over anyone in “public service” who is wealthy, too, but wants the rest of us to think that private sector capitalists who invented and invested their way to a better standard of living for themselves and for the rest of us are somehow “greedy and bad people,” while their own special interest bribe-taking and influence peddling amassed fortune doesn’t count against them.

    Hypocrites and demagogues are everywhere “representing” the people. When they do that at election campaign time it’s time to run for cover. What the hell are they teaching in our schools and colleges these days – besides guilt, mindless consumerism and “failure is good?”

  181. reginald dunlop on

    yep gotta hate those above the head camera shots…..they can even make a guy with a full head of hair look bald…….ha ha ha

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