I'd like to apologize to all our loyal readers for my recent hiatus. I’d like to say that I was off doing something to better myself. I’d like to say I was off trying to make the world a safer place for our children (assuming any of you has any). At this point, I’d even like to say that I was off watching a lifetime movie marathon*. But no, I was doing none of those worthy causes.
I was simply trying to be able to think again. On Saturday, I went up to “East Norwalk, CT” also known as “Boys’ town, USA”. I met two buddies of mine to enjoy a must win afternoon game against the penguins. Knowing the game was in Pittsburgh (a recent house of horrors for the rangers, including 0-3 in last year’s playoffs), and knowing it was a time honored tradition of ours to drink on Saturday, we decided to buy 48 beers for 3 guys. Before I could really even enjoy my first frosty domestic beverage, the Rangers were down 2-0 thanks to a combination of terrible defense, and absolutely no legs. Fresh off the point they gave away in Atlanta, it was clear my hopes at a 4 seed were rapidly slipping away. When you combine that with the depressing body odor of my two friends (one just back from a jog, the other the gym), we decided it would be best if we drank as much, and as fast as possible. The objective was simple, “Drink until you feel good about the Rangers playoff hopes”
As you might be able to imagine, 48 beers was not nearly enough to accomplish this impossible task. So we had to make an early evening run to the liquor store to re-stock. By this point, the Rangers had lost 4-3 (back to back games losing scoring 3 or more goals, shocking), were firmly entrenched in the 7 spot in the east, and a match up with the Devils in the first round looking more and more likely. (Although, I disagree with Dave a little on this. I don’t mind a match up with the Devils at all. (Assuming Dave still stands by his point last week of not wanting to play the Devils) I know all the games will be tightly contested, and for the most part, one goal games that could go either way, when you are the inferior team (which we are right now, though didn’t look it last night), I have ZERO problem with this. It will provide added motivation for the Rangers, and then of course there is the Brodeur factor. As great as he has been in his career, the Rangers are the one team that has given him fits consistently in the playoffs. They are absolutely in his head. The only time he has beaten the rangers was when we lost Jagr (the eastern conference MVP, and should have been NHL MVP) in the first period of the series, Hank (Vezina finalist) was gone for games 3 and 4 with injury, our top defenseman at the time (Kaspiritis) was out the entire series, and the team had a list of other injuries. I would absolutely take a coin flip against the Devils, over say a match up with the penguins right now. Not to mention Brodeur has been “suspect” at best his last 3 seasons in the playoffs, and gave up at least one soft goal EVERY game last year against the Rangers. The rangers just can’t win in Pittsburgh right now, and they know it. Where as the majority of this team has known nothing but success against the Devils, and will have a good deal of confidence against them, especially after last night’s shutout victory)
Anyway, we returned to the apartment and took out another 15 or so beers. Suddenly time began to blur, the sun disappeared, and it was 10:30 pm, one of my friends was sleeping on the downstairs toilet, interrupted by brief fits of vomiting, and my other pal was upstairs, unconscious in his room with toothpaste all over his face. Apparently he tried brushing his nose, and possibly his eyes, but never his teeth. I guess he figured that was outdated and wanted to try something new.
So I sat there alone on the couch, with nothing but their DVR to entertain me. I scheduled about 40 hours of body-shaping, women empowering programs. Including a movie every now and then with an intriguing title like ‘Zorro, the Gay Blade’. When I was done, I felt much like Michelleti or Rosen does after spending an entire game talking about how great marc Staal is, and then looking up to discover he is MINUS FOUR on the night (the Atlanta game, remarkably awful performance), quite unfulfilled.
I regained use of one eye just in time to watch Hank throw up by far his best and most important shutout of his career to date in a must win against the Devils. I have little ability to analyze or offer any input other than this…..I was happy. That and Callahan is really quietly having an excellent year for this team.
*To see the somewhat offensive topic of the Lifetime Movie Nugman watched (you must be 18 years of age) please see comment #2 below