Rangers vs. Blues Review (Guest Blogger Papa Bear)

‘We have a treat today as Papa Bear has done a review for us after having the chore of watching that game live at MSG last night. Just a quick thought on last night’s loss–  With the amount of roster turn over they’ve had I didn’t expect instantaneous chemistry. But I also didn’t expect 3 losses in 4 games and what has been a serious problem with decision making and puck possession. Ryan Mcdonagh spoke afterwards about the need for a complete game and a strong start. We’ve been hearing that for a long time now and it hasn’t fixed itself so what’s the solution?Most alarming is the coach’s demeanor last night. He looks like a guy searching for answers and searching for ways to fill out this roster.  Anyway, without further rambling from me here’s Papa Bear’s Review:

Well, I did it. I went to the game at the Garden last night  keeping my streak alive at 50 years in a row (minus the lock-out). It was a night out with Sonny Boy who is now 28. Took him to his first game 25 years ago. So we both kept our streaks alive. Unfortunately, this was a real snooze-fest. Here are some thoughts and observations.

  1. The Garden was quieter than  a funeral home. The noise level  picked up only during stoppages due to that very large technological apparatus (big screen TV?) hanging over center-ice which blasted at ear breaking decibels. At times I felt as if I was imbedded in the middle of a crummy video game.
  2. The bottom bowl was, at best 20% empty. “Where have all the fans gone? A long time coming.”
  3. I had the pleasure of sitting next to the smartest fan in the history of the NHL. He was the reincarnation of Stan Fishler; white hair, white beard, false teeth and useless trivia. He proudly wore his #30 sweater….No really, he was very smart….I was on the edge of my seat all night as he was barking madly at every Ranger who touched the puck. He actually took the time to tell me during a stoppage in play that Shattenkirk “has a chance to be the first Ranger Dman to win the Norris since Brad Park”. No kidding.
  4. During the first intermission, while on line waiting to use the men’s room, a woman walked out of a stall without a word being said. As she walked past, I said to her…”I hope you flushed” she said “why? Are you hungry?” She won that interaction.
  5. OMG…Last call for beer was the end of the 2nd period…..not that there’s anything wrong with that…. but I come from the 60/70’s era when players beat fans with their shoes for fun, while the rest of us finished our beers and cursed.
  6. Now, to the game…..ugh.
  7. Team had no transition game….from defense to offense or vice er versa. Very spotty cohesion from defense to forwards. Gap control-what’s that?
  8. Neutral zone play wasn’t AHL worthy. No speed, poor puck decisions, unnecessary icings..
  9. Board play and puck battles were lacking true competitive effort. Many culprits, too many to single out.
  10. Puck possession in gritty areas? . “I don’t want this thing, you take it!”
  11. A few bright spots – players who stood out…#89. At times #10, 26, 36, 93
  12. Sholuld have called in sick: ….#22, 61, 13, 20, 47, 51, 28, 25
  13. The interpretation of the rules by the referees is borderline ridiculous. Are they trying to reinvent the game? If so why? Let the men play!
  14. #51 is no Oscar Lindbergh, not even close.
  15. Staal didn’t stand out good or bad…which was surprising.
  16. New addition from waivers #25, slower than Rupp , if that could be, but I hear he’s good in the dressing room.
  17. #28, ……should be Hartford-bound soon.
  18. Looked like they really miss Fast (wow, what does that say about this team?)
  19. The fans are getting restless and AV’s days may be numbered. Ruff the next to walk the plank? Ugh.
  20. The area around the Garden reminded me of the late 70’s and 80’s. Filthy, trash in the streets, thick smell of urine, homeless camped out, aggressive panhandlers and street hustlers everywhere. What a shame. Thanks Mayor DeBlasio!
  21. I think it may be a long year. First game I remember saying to myself, this is like watching paint dry.


It’s GO Time! St. Louis Blues at New York Rangers

7:00 PM on FSMW, MSG Madison Square Garden, New York City, New York-

Our boys host the 3-0 Blues tonight. Recently acquired waiver claim Adam Cracknell will make his debut tonight for the Rangers who are looking to make it two wins in a row.

ICYMI earlier, the Rangers assigned first round pick Filip Chytil to the Hartford Wolf Pack yesterday after being scratched Sunday against Montreal

Brendan Smith will be a healthy scratch for the second consecutive game along with 21 year old defenseman Anthony DeAngelo.

HAV at it….

-James G


Rangers-2, Canadiens-0

To answer Wicky’s question from 1 o’clock this morning: No. as in no time for a game review this morning but I wanted to give you guys a fresh thread.

Never too early for a big boy pants game which the Rangers played last night. Had some puck luck early and then settled in.

they weren’t perfect but you have to like the response not just from Lundqvist but the shuffled up lineup. Physicality cometh with Kampfer in there and Mika Zibanejad has been terrific thus far. Hope he continues to shoot the puck

thats all I have time for kids so HAV at it.

-James G

It’s Go Time! Rangers vs. Canadiens

The Blueshirts are back at MSG tonight in a rematch from last spring’s Eastern Conference Quarterfinals against the Habs. Both teams were blown out in ugly losses last night and will be looking to rebound.

Incase you missed it earlier, the coach is opting for 7 defensemen tonight with Rookie first-round draft pick Filip Chytil taking a seat in the press box.

In addition Henrik Lundqvist will be back between the pipes after getting scored on early and often last night and getting the hook after 20 minutes.

Newly acquired back up goalie Ondrej Pavelec was originally scheduled to make his debut with this being the second game of the back to back but I guess when your number one guy gets bombarded in game two of the season there are no safe bets.

If anyone is interested in doing a game review post in the comments tonight.

HAV at it…

Rangers vs. Maple Leafs Review

Good Morning Boneheads. Hopefully the rain this morning has forced some off of the ledge and back into the house for a quick review:

After week 3 of the 2014 NFL season, Green Bay Packers Quarterback Aaron Rodgers had a message for fans that were already worried after their team started 1-2. “Relax” he said. He then proceeded to lead his team to an 11–2 record the rest of the way with a white hot offense that shocked most of those fans that were so worried the first month of that season. So perhaps the Rangers organization should have brought  Rodgers to camp instead of enlisting the help of  Mount Everest climber Ed Viesturs last week since most of us could use the pro bowler’s message right about now.

The Rangers came out unprepared last night and quickly folded under the pressure of a young skilled team that was pumped with adrenaline for their home opener at Air Canada Center and their big season opening win against the Winnipeg Jets.

Some Thoughts:

Henrik Lundqvist may have lost some body weight in the off season, but boy his issues sure seem mental and not physical don’t they?

Hank is fighting it early thus far. A couple of questionable goalies against at MSG in the loss to Colorado and then just unraveling early on in the first period last night when Toronto came out pressuring in the offensive zone right from the opening face off. It doesn’t take a goalie coach to know what was going to happen after the first two early Leafs goals.  We’ve seen it more than a handful of times over the last Calendar year and I believe more than ever that this is purely a mental thing with Hank. He had a strong post season after all of the ups and downs last season. I don’t think this can be attributed to a physical break down. Whether he has no faith in the coach’s system, doesn’t think the quality of the defensemen in front of him is good enough, just flat out can’t handle the pressure he puts on himself or something more complex this is something he and the goalie whisperer need to get to the root of before things get really ugly.

The defensive pairings haven’t exactly looked stellar thus far. I’m not going to beat up on any one guy after two regular seasons games but boy there’s some potential for disaster just about every shift right now. I get that in AV’s system that it all starts with the defense and taking care of their own zone etc, but there are some really bad breakdowns that happen on what feels like a nightly basis sometimes and it usually starts with a lost assignment or failure to control the puck in their own zone. The jury is out on right now as I expected the newer guys to take time to settle in. With that said I think the classic AV line up shake up is coming tonight with perhaps Nick Holden getting a chance in place of DeAngelo or Staal.

The Filip Chytil experiment seemed to end last night. The 18 year old first rounder was stapled to the bench for most of the game after the first period (was it the entired 2nd and 3rd?) and JT Miller was finally at center after much discussion. Chytil has 7 games left to make an impression but AV and GM Jeff Gorton may have already seen enough to make their decision. I like Chytil’s game and I think he deserves a fair shake but when the rest of the team is struggling to find its bearinings it can be real tough to work a guy like this into a regular role.

Speaking of JT Miller and regular roles, he sure didn’t look out of place at center last night. He tied the game 1-1 early in the first by going to the net and staying on his feet in traffic. I’m guessing he’s going to center the second line tonight with Nash and Zucc as AV looks for some stability amongst his forwards.

I call that the second line because the Hayes line can’t be considered a top 6 NHL line thus far. WOOF. I don’t want to beat on individual players so I’ll leave it as that line was underwhelming thus far. Again, expect the AV shake up tonight.

It’s just terrible when a team gets blown out in a road game, especially the first road game of the season. And it falls on the coaching staff as much as it falls on the players. I didn’t get a chance to hear  AV post game last night but I heard he took some accountability for the game. I’m sure it involved some cliche quotes. Again, I don’t want to kill the coach or an individual after 2 games here. When you look around the league there have been some ugly moments for teams that will come up with better hockey. The Cup Champs lost 10-1 to Chicago the other night, The Habs last 6-1 to the Caps last night and  Cam Talbot got pulled early in Vancouver. So this isn’t just a Rangers thing. But boy it sure isn’t a good sign when veteran players like Marc Staal or Lundqvist are making comments in the post game about the structure of the defense, the whole team not being ready to play etc. These are things that have an undertone of “this has more to do with the coach”. At least that’s how I see it.

So here we are 0-2, no Carp, no Doodie. Just plugging along to game 3 of the season against Montreal, a team that should be disgruntled after an ugly loss of their own last night. This will be a rematch against the team that booted them early from the playoffs last season so I doubt there will be a lack of passion on their end. As for our boys I guess we’ll have to wait and see.

-James G

Colorado Avalanche 4- NY Rangers 2

Does anyone care to write a game review? It should start with “it’s only Game 1, but….”

They lost this one because they didn’t defend well. New defense pairings will take time to settle, as they need to learn each others tendencies. Hank was far from stellar. Varlamov was good, but he didn’t look steady either. Made saves when it counted though.

NY’s best player, IMO, was Zucc. And Zibanejad should shoot first and think later. Deadly! Shattenkirk showed what he can do on PP, but his defensive game was well below his abilities, as he admitted here.

Chytil played just over 7 min, and he looked totally lost. I wonder if his game would’ve been different had he not passed on that odd man opportunity to shoot instead of making a difficult pass early in the game. First game, I expect him to get better. Trouble was, Nash and Zucc became homeless after Chytil’s minutes were cut.

Your 3 Stars ( based on 48 votes) :

  1. Mika Zibanejad
  2. Kevin Shattenkirk
  3. Rick Nash