Wednesday, January 27, 2010

I love the lottery

I've been waiting for something positive to write about, but things in Rangerland just keep getting worse and worse. Did I love getting beat up and just plain beat by Philly? No, but it was a whole lot better than getting shutout by the Canadiens. At least with the Flyers we got to cheer on the fights (thank you Avery!). When Gomez opened the scoring in Montreal I thought, "Please don't let this be the game winner!" And it was in an embarrassing 6-0 rout. I hate the Bell Centre. I say we forfeit the two away games next season.

Next came Pittsburg. Alright back at home where we last tallied 8 against Tampa. Beating Crosby & Co would have been such sweet salve to our bruised faith. This was the most painful type of loss. Anisimov single-handedly mounts a comeback lead (thank you Larry Brooks!) only for the PK to piss it away less than a minute later. Look at this joy - how do you not back that up? And as Henrik expertly remarked afterwards it seemed like the Pens didn't even have to work for the win. That certainly won't help Pittsburgh's sense of entitlement. Plus it was a Vs. game so all the NHL taking heads were nodding and high fiving. Urrgh. Well we'd just have to win against the bottomfeeder Hurricanes tonight, right? Not at all. We take a 5-1 drubbing. Henrik looked weak that's how bad this game was. I say forget the playoffs. Let's work on chemistry and getting our combinations working from here through April. Let's drop down to third worst and get Cam Fowler into the club.

While the Rangers have been finding new ways to lose and disappoint me, Roger Federer proves to be a safehaven of success. Roger reached his 23rd straight Grand Slam semifinal earlier this morning with a comeback win over Davydenko. I had resigned myself to the probability that Roger's remarkable streak would be broken this Slam, but then he pulled the win off. I just hope he has two more in him this week, but unlike the Rangers I have a lot more faith that he does.

That said, here's to Federer's 16th and a 3 game sweep of the West!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

It's raining goals!

Hallelujah! To be honest I thought the 6 goals we scored against Montreal (couldn't happen to a nicer team!) were an aberration. I figured we be back to under two for at least the next three games, but the Rangers must have become addicted to the goal song because they potted the puck 8 times last night. Don't spoil us, you can save some of those goals for the Devils or better yet the Flyers tomorrow. So 8-2, not much to complain about except that the stinking game has to be broadcast on VS.! Not only did the broadcasters not know either team, but there was no euphoric post-game coverage. I need Henrik to wink at me to fully enjoy a win. Hopefully I'll get the whole package tomorrow night!

ps. How awesome was Avery's fight against Georges? Love his post-fisticuffs play to the stands.

Friday, January 15, 2010

on his own

While being shutout by Martan Brodeur is probably one of my least favorite things in the world at least he's an elite goalie and arguably the best of all time. No shame in that (on paper). Not so much Mike Brodeur an AHL goalie only making his 2nd NHL start. Last night's game sucked hardcore. To lose a point with 1:11 to go and after Henrik played his heart out two games in a row is just lousy, and I hate it. At least Neil and Ruutu didn't score. Even so I'm hating Ottawa right now. come March 25th though, Canada's capital will be my favorite place bacause that's where I'll be going crazy at the Thrush Hermit reunion. I haven't visited the city since the summer of 2001 so I'm more than ready to indulge at the Fish Market/ Drinks come in a fishbowl. I'm thinking long lunch. Here's a little clip to get you (but more likely myself) psyched. Is this the best video of all time? oR just the best one made for $500? Also let's take it to St. Louis (hello WPIX) and Montreal cette week-end.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

wrong end of instant classic, a la Wimdledon 2008

As usual I spoke a little too soon. This lost point hurts so much worse than the other 6 this season. The game was very hard to watch because it was so good. Lots of action, lots of shots, lots of saves. My objectives kept changing throughout the game from please score on Brodeur, to please get through this 5-on-3, and finally please just hold on. We did hold on but ultimately all it did was heap more glory on NJ. I'm sure Patrick Elias is just introverted, but his lack of emotion upon netting the game winner and sole goal just made me
angry. And Brodeur's post game was riddled his patented put-downs crouched in his reportedly "humble" answers. This time he claimed he'd be happy to split the win with Henrik because they both played so wonderfully, then went on to say that the shootout was the truest head-to-head goalie contest so obviously he was a million times better than our King. Whatever. Very similar to his backhanded remarks after setting the shutout record a few weeks ago when he commented that it was nice to look down at the players chasing his records and seeing that they're not even close. Plus I don't remember hearing the name Sawchuk pass his smug little lips. But enough about that asshole. We played a tremendous offensive and defensive game. Henrik was unbelievably stellar. How much do I wish that Gaborik's OT shot that hovered around the post for about 3 solid seconds went in? Or in a perfect world, Avery takes the shootout and totally buries one on his beloved Fatso. I'm just gonna pretend that's what happened and hope that our point streak continues tomorrow night against the Sens.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

moving on up

I'm back on dangerous ground where the Rangers are winning enough that I spend my time playing God, trying to decide how many points we need from each individual game in order to win the games I really want. Like I have anything to do with it. This is how I got into trouble earlier this season after our nearly perfect start. Still I wasn't upset when we donated a point to Atlanta Thursday night, especially after we took two from Boston handily Saturday afternoon. I love finally sitting in 6th, closely nestled behind 5th, so I'd love nothing more than to beat the pants off the Devils tonight. This is the game I circled since the ball dropped. There's just something so joyous in defeating Jabba, especially at MSG. But we didn't win last time and his slimy smug trail hasn't quite left the building either. Hopefully we dump a whole load of salt on Brodeur tonight because these are two points I'm not willing to gamble with.

Sean Avery hasn't scored any more goals in the wake of his 4 point triumph, but he just keeps on giving the fans what they want. Or at least this fan. He just put this up on his blog. This is what I want to see. just make him the commisioner right now. I'm also baffled by Henrik's black grandpa socks. If he wasn't berobed and lounging on his bed I'd be highly disturbed. Great work Avery!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

In Your Face!

I know Sean Avery would love to contribute 4 points every night, but what better game to actually deliver? It's like Avery gave every detractor of his Dallas debacle a big ole cockslap across the face. Modano, Morrow, Turco, even Gary Bettman. I'm not sure our commissioner even looks at on a regular basis, but if he takes a peek today he'll see his nemesis #16 in red,white and blue heading up the 3 stars of the night. Sweet. And Sean did it in style basically constructing every goal whether off his blade or not. Plus he was all up in Dallas' faces AND took a ten minute misconduct. I'm thankful not only for the two points but for finally seeing that post-game interview I've been waiting all season for (Thanks Stan!). I wish MSG had covered a bit of the Stars post-game comments because they once again proved to have a real red state mentality that forces me to look down on them like the elitist liberal I am. Even coach Marc Crawford who had nothing to do with Dallas last year was alarmingly closed-minded saying, “He had no impact on our guys’ lack of execution. That would be giving him far too much credit. Give him credit on fashion.” Thank Marc, I will. Avery looks pretty damn fine, especially with his little hair growing in, but where were his glasses? Now while I'd love to see that consistency that Avery was talking about come to fruition right away, I'd really dig a repeat of this game against his other favorite goalie Martan on Tuesday.

It's been a great couple of Hockey days back to back. I'm still basking in the glow of Team USA's gold medal in the Barely Legal Championships. I'm crazy for this team and maybe you are too, so here's clip of their final rally chant.

I think that's #9 Philip McRae current London Knight and future St. Louis Blue leading the charge, or maybe that's Kristo. No denying that's Kreider in the foreground lending his sizable support. Kreider's given a verbal commitment to BC next year, but I'm looking forward to 2011 when hopefully both he and Stepan will be celebrating at the Garden on a regular basis.

Things must be going too well in hockey reality so the struggle I've become accustomed to has visited my sleep state. I had my very first Call Up dream two nights ago. Despite my protests that I can barely skate the Rangers "needed me" and I foolishly complied. Here's where the dream takes a bad turn. Now I'm not only panicked to take the ice when I'm unable to stop on skates without falling down Prucha style, but I don't even get access to the locker room. Somehow my subconscious thought it was a great idea to stage this dream-turned-nightmare in some rigged up janitor's closet where I'm given an extremely oversized Poncho with a Rangers' logo on it because the Jersey I sported to game has Henrik's name on the back. Didn't even conjur a single player striding by in a towel to sweeten my anxiety. What kind of fucked up message is my brain sending me? I much prefer the waking dream I had New Year's Eve in which my boys were forced to make out with each other because they were still stuck in the Raleigh locker room come midnight. Maybe I'll score in my next dream.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Team USA takes Gold!

I've been loving the stuffing out of this year's World Juniors Under 20 tournament, especially now that my boys have taken the Gold medal. There's a lot of reasons for this but first and foremost is the NHL Network's exclusive coverage of team USA. The luxury of not only a non-Canadian feed, but one that is actually pro-USA has been a complete delight. Team USA is also a dream, captained by Rangers prospect Derek Stepan, who fearful of pulling a Sidney Crosby skated hastily away from his post-game interview to join the handshake line, very classy. I'm loving our other two draft picks in red white and blue Chris Kreider and Ryan Bourque. Kreider has been an offensive powerhouse and scored the 1st goal for team USA again tonight. He also demonstrated his dance moves in the locker room, that's right extended NHL Network coverage delivered the goods. Question: Will Kreider be rested and ready to play for Boston College in the Fenway game come friday? Answer: I don't know. Q: Do I have to tape that shit? A: Yes.
This championship game was a classic, but the type of classic that's much more fun to watch knowing the outcome. Lots of scoring back and forth - somehow US up 5-3 with about 5 minutes left in the 3rd - then like the worse kind of deja vu, Team Canada powerhouse Eberle scored two quick goals to even it just like he did New Year's Eve night. Luckily this time our guy prevailed in OT. John Carlson, future Capital, skates in 3 on 2, fakes passing so convincingly, then rips one into the net for the medal winner. The flashiest part of his play was that he didn't even eye the net when he let it go. Faked it that good - some slickass shit. Loved it. Plus hirsute D'Amato scored again. I swear this kid grows a full beard between puck drop and last buzzer every game. Unfortunately he was drafted late by the Maple Leafs, so this is probably one of the only times I can enjoy him, especially if he continues to be this good. #14 caught my eye tonight too. Mostly for his handsome face. Turns out he's Luke Walker, currently unsigned but scouted by the Rangers at Traverse City last summer. Sign this kid Sather! NHL Network described him as a "Meat Tenderizer" what more info do you need? MSG can play the Star Wars theme every time he takes the body.

It was all very exciting and you can enjoy it again tomorrow night at 6. I'll be watching the Rangers v. Dallas. Wouldn't miss Avery's first game against the team he was forced out of. Brodeur managed to shut them out tonight and I would like nothing better than keep their scoreless streak going. I hope Avery wears his Angus Young suit to the game!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Happy New Year!

So all in all a fine end to 2009, right? 5-1-2 is a very respectable record. Normally I would feel great about taking 3 of 4 points from the Canes, but given their comparative rank and our propensity to suck for long stretches - even losing a single point is troubling. Plus I'd like to win at home, and I think MSG might want to think about sending some free tickets my way this week to ensue a few raised sticks.
I noticed the Bruins nicked our stick ritual at the conclusion of this year's Winter Classic, but I'll turn a blind eye because the game was so fabulous, particularly the last hour when Boston rallied in glittering twilight. By far my favorite part of NBC's coverage was the post-game reveal of 2010's USA Olympic team. Look at baby Cally and Drury standing side by side! And I loved big kid Tim Thomas coming out at the end. It was a great touch and pretty emotional. Plus I have a sizable bitch streak, so I also enjoyed that Snotty Gomez was left off the team and that Langenbrunner's name was spelled wrong on his child representative. Poor Gomez, he's even small enough that he could have announced his own name too! I'm really looking forward to the Olympics. We've got a pretty scrappy team and I'll be rooting for them, but my allegiances will be divided. I'd love Jagr to do well with team Czech and of course the Tre Kronor will have a place in my heart as long as Henrik leads that team out. I have some faith in reserve for my Rangers this season too. They've pulled it out (a trip to the playoffs that is) 3 years running and I think they can do it again. I just hope Sather doesn't sell off any valuable assets come trade deadline. Especially those boys currently kicking ass at the World Juniors. I have a bad crush on Chris Kreider, who has been putting up some impressive numbers. Stepan and Ryan Bourque aren't bad either and I'd love team USA to win today and kick probable opponent Canada in the Gold Medal round. Do I want too much this year?

ps. I have changed my position of disdain for the Philly's dire hair situations in light of their comments during the Winter Classic. Turns out Carcillo wasn't trying to grow his own Crosby inspired Bobby Peru mustache, but was trying to honor famed former Flyer's enforcer Dave Schultz. He just doesn't possess enough testosterone to recreate Schultz' signature stache. And Hartnell when asked if his long curly locks froze during the snowy rehearsal on New Year's Eve, he replied, "No, still beautiful!" Now I'm thinking Hartnell might be a genius because that answer is golden, but also I knew every shift he was on the ice because his hideous hair was the first thing my eye went towards. Brilliant! Hear that Mr. Avery? Time to grow out that crew cut.