Friday, March 13, 2009

3 Goals and Hank

We couldn't agree more with Nugman. A great night and a great win for the Rangers. Three goals and Hank and you've got another victory. (We got a 4th goal but 3 was all we needed.)

Suddenly I love the coaching. Torts rewards hustle (example: Avery promoted to the top line) and benches lack-of-hustle (example: Zherdev has a seat while Callahan steps in). This is that ACCOUNTABILITY thing that the Rangers have so long lacked. When you reward players that try hard you quickly get two things: (1) More ice time for the hustling players and (2) an obvious incentive for the other players to start hustling to get more ice time. Plus - Tortorella's loud 1st intermission "suggestions" seemed to light a fire under our heroes. They started the 2nd period like they were shot from a cannon.

And how about that Sean Avery? Have you ever seen a more immediate impact on a hockey club from the addition of one player (who was not a superstar or a goalie)? Sean was everywhere last night and he and his new line (Gomez & Callahan) played huge and generated a large part of our offense. And almost as important - he's helped make our team fun to watch again. The guys just seemed to have more speed, more offense and more power than usual. And they defended Lundqvist by keeping the puck far far away from him. Because the best Defense occurs when you're not defending at all - by making the other guy defend his goal.

The win leapfrogs us north of the Line-O-Death (which lurks just out of the playoffs between 8th and 9th place - see left). There's still a long way to go - but it's a heck of a lot more comfortable looking ahead when our boys are sitting with the cool kids - at least for the moment. And as Nugman pointed out - only two NOOT-failures and a generally good day for the scoreboard last night.

Tonight's two games have no impact on our playoff hopes - so eyes off the scoreboard this evening (perhaps Nugman's "drink heavily" advice would do nicely here) and start thinking about Saturday's big matinee verses the Philadelphia Cheese Steaks. If the ratings are good they'll go ahead and replay the game on Sunday afternoon as well.

And on tomorrow's scoreboard - here's how to root (Deb Kaufman please take note):

Senators over Penguins
Thrashers over Sabres
Devils over Canadians (not that we like rooting for those guys)
Capital over Hurricanes.

And please - NOOT - people - NOOT! Let's focus.


  1. My drink heavily advice works well everywhere. But you are correct, no games of relevance on the ice tonight. As far as I am concerned, hockey does not exist tonight as I will attempt to stomach a knicks game with the knowledge that they themselves are just 1 1/2 games out of the ridiculous NBA playoffs.

  2. Go Knicks

    Rangers and Knicks playoffs at the garden the same year would be fantastic, Mr. fantastic?

    but back to the rangers, what the hell did zherdev do to get benched 2nd and 3rd period, I was only able to tune in at the start of the 2nd. Seems pretty harsh for no hussle to be benched two periods.