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Happy Leap Day!

Posted By Carp On February 29, 2012 @ 4:31 am In Hockey,New York Rangers,NHL | 655 Comments

The Rangers leap into the final quarter of the season tomorrow in Carolina.

I was looking at their record again and thinking, if they go 12-9 these last 21 games—which is conservative—they’ll have 52 wins and 110 points. The 1993-94 team holds the franchise records with 52 wins and 112 points.

Yikes.

They also leap into March, which is the busiest month of the season with 17 games—five of the first six on the road, plus a home matinee against the defending champion Bruins Sunday. They will play four sets of back-to-backs, three of those with both games on the road, the fourth with the second game on the road. In the middle of the month is a seven-game homestand.

Then comes the closing kick, final week of the season in April, when they go every other night: Boston, at Philly, at Pittsburgh, and Washington.

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Was talking to Mike Rupp about John Scott the other night. He told me that when Chicago came to town a couple of weeks ago, he didn’t really know much about Scott and how he fights. Rupp said he usually goes over some video of the opponent’s past fights, and while doing so, he thought “Scott’s a handful.” Then, when the game against the Blackhawks got to 4-0, Rupp felt he had to try to start a fight with Scott to fire up his team. Despite Rupp’s talking to him, Scott declined—the smart thing to do when you’re up 4-0 on the road. But now, because of the yapping, Rupp thought, “Well, I’ve opened that can of worms; I’m going to have to fight him in Chicago (next week).” And Rupp smiled when he said that. Because Scott will be on his side when the Rangers go to Chicago.

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Speaking of that, we got a few glimpses into the human side of the trade deadline the other day, didn’t we? Scott talked in Chicago about leaving his wife and  new baby. We heard about Nick Schultz crying because he’d spent his whole career in Minnesota before being traded. We saw the nervousness, even if he didn’t admit it, of Brandon Dubinsky. And we read the tweets of Christian Thomas and Dylan McIlrath as they celebrated not being traded.


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