Rangers 5, Devils 0.
Todays review is provided by SN. Thanks for covering for me on short notice. HAV.
Round 2: NJ v NYR 12/11
1. Goalie Controversy – Not sure what has been more enjoyable, watching Auntie (and the team!) shine or reading the Henk loyalists defending his sub-par play. The reality is this team needs both of them, heck, these days with all the injuries they need everyone and then some. Henk was in a bit of a funk and Auntie has been playing out of his mind so you ride him and don’t worry about Shampoo Boy getting his knickers twisted in a knot. I did notice after Shea scored there were 17 players congratulating him and a sullen looking Swede at the end of the bench staring aimlessly. All NYR fans owe the King an enormous debt of gratitude and nobody should fault him for taking Dolan’s millions when they were offered, but he is signed for another 5 years at $8.5 cap hit which is frightening on some level. He had a great season last year given the quality of chances he faced with the Team D played in front of him. This is all about rewarding Auntie and not punishing Henk. Elaine did not do himself any favors with his cheeky comment, “I love Henk, but I love the team more”. Just win baby, no drama.
2. Derbils ‘Rivalry’ – The NJ River Rats come in with a -13 goal differential but still slightly relevant in Buttman’s 3 pt/game NHL and tied with TB, Detroit and FLA 7 pts. outside of Wild Card. There is not much offensive talent, let alone defensive stars, beside Schneider working hard One Day at a Time to keep games close. It is obvious Uncle Lou knew when to leave. This lack of top end skill is noticed on their PP which doesn’t feature D talent carrying and creating (missing Larsson perhaps?) and only one line of legit PP forwards (Pitts-Smelly on 2nd unit?) Anthony Michael Hall is a stud; never had a chance to watch him much as an Oiler; he is a skilled and physical, had a hit the other night that sent the player off on a stretcher. Long Islands’ Palmieri can snipe and Cammalleri is a decent 2 way player but PJ Parenteau, Vern Fiddler, and Ben Lovejoy? I don’t think so…
3. Kicking Motion – Derbils scored first, well at least they thought so, but refs went to the review. Not a full Rockette special, but enough of a drag motion to warrant review and, lo and behold, guess who is on the ‘nice’ list up at the North Pole, I mean the NHL Control Center in Toronto. Only 80 seconds into the game and Auntie has the ‘juju’ working for him (and the team) already; a good sign as the goal is waived off. Another goal is quickly waived off at end of first with Pitts-Smelly jamming Auntie and puck into the goal after the whistle. Does it seem NYR is finally starting to even up in reviewed calls both on-ice and up in Toronto this season? Don’t want to waste it all now, need to save for April and May (and June?)
4. A ‘special’ Team – PP and PK come to the rescue again with a long stretch of PK (8 PK minutes over a 13 minute of game time) from mid-way in the 2nd through the beginning of the 3rd featuring 4 kills and a shortie. In the game Couch led forwards with just under 5 mins of PK time; Grabber had a little under 4 mins as he was called for high sticking at the start of 3rd. McMonster, Done Girardi, Hold-on over 4 mins TOI and Staalled with under 4 as he sat for a trip in 2nd. Two PP goals in the 3rd period to put the game away including Pirriwinkle connecting for his 2nd goal in 23 games and Easy Peasy Jimmy Vesey dunking a rebound off a Pirriwinkle shot for his 10th marker on the season and 3rd in the last 6 games. Derbills PK was statuesque and NYR moved the puck quickly to get good looks. The best special teams play was Hazy Daze feeding Jay Tea/Hated One for a Miller Time shortie on a 2 on 1 resulting from a NJ miscue in the neutral zone to give the Blueshirts a 2-0 lead toward the end of the 2nd. PP was 2 for 5, PK 0-5 (or 5-0) (Editor’s note: PK was 5-5) with a shortie; team is in top 6 in both categories now…isn’t that special?
5. Defensive dynamos – even when they were scoring 5 per game in October, they were getting goals from an aggressive fore-check and neutral zone positioning leading to odd man rushes (along with a very hot PP). Now, with three top 9 forwards (and Pimple) out, they have tightened up considerably on the back end and, as a result, the D is playing much better, especially Ein Kleiner, Done Girardi and Staalled who all struggled for long stretches in October/November. McD is the Rock of Gibraltar and Holdon is more confident, even gets PP time with 2nd unit. The cherry on the cake was popped when Shea Butter scored his first goal at the very end of the 2nd off a great face-off win by the Lindberg Baby. The team defensive system had been changed from the horrendous man to man structure that had D-men chasing the puck with a more traditional match up zone. Forwards are supporting better and opponents, perhaps, intimidated by NYR speed choose not to press the points, allowing easier exiting out of the D-zone. D-men are moving puck more quickly along the wall as well. Good job Buek!
6. First “official” goal was the result of a great fore-check from the Step line with Zucc and The cycling down low on an extended Ozone shift and the D barely involved as the forwards controlled the puck down low. THE is starting to get back into beast mode on the wall another very good sign. First goal was important against a struggling team, especially with their first goal being taken away.
7. Another solid game from the 3rd/4th line of Couch/Lindberg Baby/Ribbit who showed jam, grit along with solid cycling leading to a couple of quality scoring chances. The Machine has rounded into form recently. Originally he was to return in late November from hip injury so guess he is on schedule if you ignore earlier efforts when he looked tentative and stiff. Ribbit is hopping into the boards and not afraid to take a hit to make a play. Couch is proving to be very comfortable on the checking line (and not Top 6 AV!) Very solid.
8. Another 5 spot daring fans to try and stomach the fake pizza from Papa Johns while living near some of the best pizza in the world. One would have to be pretty hammered from overpriced MSG brews to be broke and drunk enough to order that cardboard with tomato paste.
9. Goal scorers tonite (with ages) were THE Enigma (25), Miller Time (23), Shea Butter (22), Pirriwinkle (25) and VC (23) including in the bottom 6; Lindberg Baby (25), Couch (25), Ribbit (25), The Great Dane (23) along with Top 6 forwards Stepsoft (26), Grabber (29) and Zucchini (29). Thought I heard a stat; first forward lineup all under age 30 since mid-80s. Guess you do want to hold on to draft picks… (Editor’s note: only four of the forwards were Rangers draft picks, none after 2012)
10. Auntie has helped the NYR to three straight wins in a span of 4 days with 62 saves on 63 shots. Only 19 shots on goal in this one as the Devils are offensively challenged, even with all the PP time they had. Should he start on Tuesday against Olga’s step children? It’s a definite maybe, I mean, hell yes!
11. First team to 20 wins and first in Metro (sorry Eric). Tough stretch coming with 5 of 6 games against some good teams including 3 on road so team’s mettle will be tested starting with the Blackhawks looking for revenge in the Garden on Tuesday night. Time to circle the wagons!
1. Auntie – rolling, rolling rolling
2. Jay Tea – takes a licking and keeps on ticking
3. Ein Kleiner – protect and serve; nice knucks to protect his rook partner at end of game. (Editor’s note: Wicky’s head exploded)
Your Three Rangers Stars:
1. Annti Raanta
2. Chris Kreider
3. Brady Skjei
Rangers Report 2.0’s Three Stars:
1. Annti Raanta
2. JT Miller
3. Brady Skjei
On Friday, December 9, 2016 10:05 AM, Rangers Report <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
Great job. Don’t worry about the timing.
Sent from my iPhone
On Dec 9, 2016, at 8:58 AM, D O <email@example.com> wrote:
hah, almost forgot!