NYR/ARI 10/16 Review: Stone Cold Shesty Stuns Desert Dogs in Home Opener; CZAR IGOR Stops a Penalty Shot Too! CK20 Continues Chase For Most Goals in Franchise History, Sloppy Win But Not Every Game is a Picasso, Lindgren Back, Derek Stepan Talks Blueshirts’ Career, LAVY LOUNGES, Shameless Bill Pidto; M$GN Pushes Gambling on Children & More

On Monday night, October 16th, CZAR IGOR stopped 26 shots – and a Jason Zucker penalty shot too – in the Rangers’ 2-1 home-opener victory over the nomadic Arizona Coyotes. While this game was largely chaotic and sloppy – a win’s a win and that’s all that matters. On to the next one.

Greetings and salutations everyone and welcome to another blog here on BlueCollarBlueShirts.com. The 2023-24 New York Rangers are undefeated whenever yours truly is not in-attendance!

In other words, and in case you missed it, here is my ROAD-TRIP blog from Columbus: https://bluecollarblueshirts.com/columbus/

I’m not so sure if the Rangers would have won this game tonight had Jonathan Quick been in net for the club. At some point, you have to figure that “The Ranger Killer” will play for the team sometime soon. Perhaps during the upcoming Western Canadian road-trip?

Unlike recent home-openers in Rangers’ history – and when entering this 2023 rendition – it did feel like there was less pomp and circumstance than ever before.

While I do think that a large part of it has to do with the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoff loss; it also doesn’t help when M$G, who is looking to recoup their M$G $phere losses, via their own personal ATMs – aka Ranger fans – is charging ungodly money to attend these games:

These were the cheapest tickets available at 1PM Monday afternoon. Fun and affordable for the whole family – just donate your kidneys! And if Grandma is sitting on a nest egg? Then take her out too! Photo Credit: Ticketmaster

Really? Nearly $300 to see the freakin’ Coyotes?

Then again, and for fellow fans of history like myself – this was perhaps the last game that the Coyotes will ever play at M$G – prior to becoming the Houston Aeros next season!

If I’ve said it once, then I’ve said it a million times before – one day, Chris Kreider’s #20 jersey will hang in the rafters at M$G. Sadly, the franchise will also continue to ignore Frank Boucher, the Cook brothers, Bryan Hextall, Lester Patrick, Ron Greschner, Ching Johnson and others. But they will get Kreider right – after all – it’s a mega-money night! Photo Credit: NRY

While we’ll get into everything from the home-opener during tonight’s GAME REVIEW segment; but for now, and outside of CZAR IGOR – no one had a better game tonight for the Blueshirts than the longest-tenured player on the roster, Christopher James Kreider.

As brought up last night, during the past two-plus seasons, no one has scored more short-handed goals in the league other than CK20, while in addition, the newly married man is second-best in power-play goals scored too.

During tonight’s 2-1 victory, Kreider kicked off the scoring by “only” scoring a 5 x 5/full-strength goal!

Not too shabby for the “Special Teams’ Specialist!”

With the strike, Kreider’s 269th goal for the Rangers – he now only trails four men in franchise history (a time-span of 97-years – and yes – each era is different too) for most goals – and hockey god-willing – by the end of the season, only two men will stand above him in this department.

The 32-year-old Kreider, who is now in the prime of his career, and who also has a no-movement clause attached to his contract which expires following the events of the 2026-27 campaign – not only should he be able to catch both Adam Graves (280) and Andy Bathgate (272) this season (heck – he’s presently only one hat-trick away from catching Bathgate) – but throughout the course of his current contract – should be able to catch Jean Ratelle  (336) too.

He may also be able to catch the all-time leader, Rod Gilbert (406), on his present deal too.

After all, he’s only 137 goals shy from doing so.

And who knows?

Maybe Kreider hangs around following the end of his current deal on a team-friendly contract – and then finishes his career as a one-team only player.

But of course, I am getting way ahead of myself here – but for all of the talk about Alex Ovechkin chasing Wayne Gretzky’s league record of 894 goals – I’d rather monitor Kreider’s chase for Gilbert’s record!

Panarin, who was busted in Russia this summer for illegally shooting a gun (the frightened Rangers’ beat reporters won’t talk about this at all); ironically, and ever since pulling the trigger in Mother Russia – is now shooting the puck too! Go figure!

Ah, I almost forgot – your daily disclaimer for this 2023-24 season:


With that now out of the way – I thought that the Rangers “survived” their home-opener on Monday night.

But keep in mind, not every game is a Picasso and two points is two points.

However, and without trying to come off as a “DEBBIE DOWNER” right now – had this been a win on the road – then I think you’d be ecstatic about it.

A home win like this, your home-opener no less?

I think you felt relieved more than anything else.

For all of the never-ending talk (where I don’t think that most people even know what these two words mean – including the bulk of the beat reporters – but they repeat it because they are obedient parrots) about “SYSTEMS” and “STRUCTURE” – there was none of that on Monday night.


Rather than those tired terms, it was about physicality and the will to win.

Much like the Blue Jackets from Saturday night – the Coyotes had NO issues whatsoever when attempting to enter the Rangers’ zone.

I don’t know what the time of possession stats were (and it doesn’t matter because I write from the EYE-TEST perspective anyway), but it felt like 65%-35%, and in favor of the visitors.

Granted, penalties were also part of the mess, but at the same time, the Rangers didn’t look so hot even before all of the fiascos and debacles created by the men in the black-and-white stripes.

Funny enough, perhaps it were these inept officials that propelled the Blueshirts to victory.

I was thinking this at the time when watching the game, but didn’t want to say anything in the moment in fear of jinxing it (yes, I’m “sports superstitious” – and as all of you regular readers know); but a friend of the blog, Josh G., did say the following to me once the Rangers found themselves on the wrong end of a 5 x 3 penalty kill at the end of the second period:

“This penalty kill might be a blessing in disguise and give the boys some life.”

Tied at 1-1 at the time, and perhaps with the Rangers being “lucky” that this was a wrap-around Arizona power-play, rather than of the uninterrupted two-minute variety; the Blueshirts, backed by CZAR IGOR (and one <DING> too), survived – and I mean SURVIVED.

And you know what I always say – if you can’t score on a 5 x 3 power-play (and this also applies for four- and five-minute power-plays too), then you deserve to lose.

The hockey gods reward hard work and once killing the final 41-seconds of the ‘Yotes 5 x 3 power-play at the start of the third period – the Rangers scored a power-play goal of their own, the eventual game winner, as a puck that deflected off of the stick from NONNA TROCHECK’S BAMBINO, Vincent Trocheck, was all that CZAR IGOR needed.

And oh yeah: Once securing the win, CZAR IGOR then opened up a can of whoop-ass – but we’ll talk about that fracas once we get there!

At this time, the pregame news and notes, including a recent interview that former Blueshirt Derek Stepan gave to one of his old teammates.

Former Ranger Derek Stepan, a major face of the “Lundqvist Era,” was recently interviewed by one-time teammate, John Scott. Photo Credit: Getty Images

Two weeks back, former Ranger center (and Coyote alum too), Derek Stepan, announced his retirement.

For the full details, including Stepan’s chapter from my first book, check out: https://bluecollarblueshirts.com/10323/

Over the weekend, Stepan appeared on the “Dropping the Gloves” podcast which is hosted by his one-time former teammate in New York (and Arizona alum too), former NHL All-Star MVP, John Scott.

You can listen to the 45-minute interview by clicking the links below:

While the bulk of the conversation centered around Stepan’s beginnings and his place in the Minnesota hockey scene; of course, he also talked about the Rangers.

Here was the most notable stuff from the interview:

— He admitted that he wasn’t exactly the fastest skater in the world, and despite his relative young age (33-years-old) – he felt that he had become a “step” (pun intended, even if he said this word verbatim) slower than ever before.

— Stepan was pretty much complimentary about his time in New York.

— On the 2014 Stanley Cup Final loss to Los Angeles, he said, “Lundqvist was great, but Quick was three saves better.”

Of note: Stepan wasn’t asked about his blow-up with Lundqvist during the 2017 playoff loss to Ottawa.

— After talking about his arbitration process with Carolina, and his respect for Rod Brind’Amour too, he said that he always knew what he was signing up for with the Canes – he was going to be a fourth liner – and where more times than not – he’d be a healthy scratch.

However, he always envisioned himself playing 7-8 minutes per-game in his final season – and not the 3-4 minutes that he averaged.

— On retiring, Stepan, who already said that the game was moving past him (literally), also said that he received no calls over the summer. Despite previously playing on a PTO deal with Carolina (where he said it was made clear to him that he’d get a contract), he said he didn’t want to go through that whole process again.

— When asked about his favorite linemates, Stepan immediately replied with Martin St. Louis and Chris Kreider, where he noted that MSL is a “hockey brainiac,” and how he isn’t surprised how the former #26 in New York is now a bench boss in Montreal.

Stepan also spoke highly of his former captain, Ryan Callahan, who ironically was traded for MSL by Glen Sather in 2014.

— As far as making a comeback, Stepan said that if the phone rings then he’d consider it, but that he is happy in his new role with Bill Guerin’s Minnesota Wild. Stepan also mentioned that the Wild GM is his next door neighbor.

Stepan, when pressed by Scott, revealed his dream of one day becoming a general manager in the NHL.

All in all, this was an informative interview, and one that definitely could have gone longer, but most interviews on Scott’s podcast are around 45-minutes or so.

I feel like Peter Laviolette’s daily press conferences, or LAVY LOUNGES as I have dubbed them as, are longer than these blogs!

After having National Felony League football Sunday off and away from the rink; on Monday morning, and in what the club is branding as “RISE AND SHINE” rather than saying what it is – a morning skate – the team held their first practice of the season at M$G – and not in Tarrytown, NY.

The biggest development from the morning skate – or “RISE AND SHINE” if you want to go with that?

Ryan Lindgren was back.

Here’s what Lavy had to say for himself following the light practice:

The only thing that mattered from this near ten-minute interview was that the status of Lindgren was going to be a game-time decision.

(And no joke – most of these reporters should have their press passes stripped away from them. Seriously, asking the head coach, “do you want to win tonight?” and “do you want to dominate at home?” Poor Hugh Delano is rolling in his grave.)

Approximately seven-hours later, we found out if Lindgren was going to play or not.

Lindgren was back on the ice while Zac Jones was back in the press box.

And for whatever reason, man-oh-man, did the Coyotes target Lindgren tonight.

The 2023 Steven McDonald Extra Effort Award and Players’ Player Award winner can’t get a break.

Every game for him is like playing a real-life version of “Frogger.”

Here was Laviolette’s line-up for the home opener:

FIRST LINE: Kreider/Zibanejad/Kakko

SECOND LINE: Panarin/Chytil/Lafreniere

THIRD LINE: Cuylle/Trocheck/Wheeler

FOURTH LINE: Goodrow/Bonino/Pitlick

FIRST PAIR: Lindgren/Fox

SECOND PAIR: Miller/Trouba

THIRD PAIR: Gustafsson/Schneider


BACK-UP: Quick



The following graphics and information come from ESPN.com:



Note, there were 78967896796756795677685 penalties called at the end of the game, penalties of no consequence, which is why they aren’t included here.



28 2 26 .929 20 5 1 0 0 58:43 0


27 1 26 .963 19 7 0 0 0 59:55 2

While still not used as wisely as he is on TNT; for the first time since joining M$GN, the network did feature Henrik Lundqvist more than the seven-foot pissant, Sieve Vagistat. Photo Credit: TNT

For a home-opener – the M$GN mailed in this broadcast.

But that’s not what bothered me the most – instead, it’s how they concluded the pregame show – something that we’ll get into in just a few paragraphs.

Funny enough, it’s what ended the pregame show that negatively impacted the start time of this broadcast too.


For people as old as me, and who remember rotary phones, outhouses, pet rocks, double spacing when using a typewriter and a world where no one doubted how many genders the human race has; these M$GN home-opener broadcasts were at least an hour in length or more – and sometimes two or three hours long.

But alas, a new development has reared in its ugly head to the surface.

Sports gambling – where that (alleged) methed-up freak with the bug eyes plays center stage – and who goes bat-shit crazy whenever telling M$GN viewers to put up their life savings on every game in the world.

But don’t miss the fine print at the conclusion of his wretched program, the three words that you have to squint to find – “Please Bet Responsibly.”

I know that I’ve done these sports betting/gambling rants on this site before – and many times at that – but really – when does it end?

And as we found out tonight – it’s only getting worse.

Yes, I do gamble on sports, but that’s a private and personal manner.

Furthermore, there are no kids reading my words, nor am I held to the standards of a television network.

But to be fair to M$GN – every sports broadcast runs these incessant 24/7/365 gambling ads.


I’m also reminded of an expression from my younger years:

“If everyone jumped off the Brooklyn Bridge, then would you do it too?”

Seriously – how much credibility and press would a sports network receive if they told the gambling outfits – “NO, WE DON’T WANT YOUR MONEY.”

But alas, that will never happen – that is – until the FCC eventually steps in, perhaps a decade down the line – and following all of the mass suicides in the teenage/young male demographic, the demo which all of these commercials are catered to.

“Please jump off the Brooklyn Bridge responsibly. We’re all Caesers.”

In my eyes, and I know that Shawn S. of the “2 Guys, 1 Cup” podcast preaches this line of thinking too – sports gambling should be legalized.

However, when it comes to advertising sports gambling on television – it should be treated like cigarettes – BANNED.

Smoking will kill you over time, but gambling will ruin you first – where heck – you won’t even be able to afford tobacco products!

And yes – I’m a hypocrite – as I’m smoking a Winston and withdrawing the $100 that I won on tonight’s football game as I type these very words!

But what I do, the decision of an adult, is of my own concern.

Pushing gambling to impressionable kids is wrong.


As opined above, one day, I think that the FCC will step in (and sadly, it will take many lives lost for this to happen) – and they will outlaw gambling commercials as they have previously done with the cigarette companies.

And after seeing the end of tonight’s broadcast, where again, I’ll get into soon enough – I’m sure that the M$GN would parade around Sieve Vagistat in a Joe Camel costume if they could.



Our lovable announce team, the two buffoons, Sam Rosen and Joe Micheletti, were back tonight – where yep – I knew it, you knew it, the whole world knew it – Rosen was going to have to say something about Arizona’s Logan Cooley. Photo Credit: M$GN

The traditional elongated broadcast was nixed tonight, in favor of Alex Monaco – who was looking like a hopped-up Tony Montana at the end of Scarface when promoting his gambling bullshit.

You see, M$GN makes more money with a taped gambling broadcast than they do by going live by covering all of the pregame and Blue Carpet ceremonies.

That’s why the richest organization in hockey stays that way.

We saw about two-seconds worth of the Blue Carpet ceremony and that was that.

In the B.G. era (Before Gambling), this used to be a fun event to watch.

It was nice to see Lundqvist featured more than usual tonight, as “The King of Commentary,” and as he always is, remained stellar in his new career.

However, it was also gut-wrenching, if not vomit-inducing, to see the smug Sieve Vagistat too – where no joke – he opened the broadcast by once again talking about his legendary 46-game career – and then spoke about his bathroom habits.

That was pretty ironic considering his NHL career was like a shit nugget that won’t flush down a toilet – which also sums up his broadcasting career too.

And after Vagistat relayed to us his toilet time tales – I then muted him whenever I saw him on my TV. I just can’t do it anymore.

Once the seven-foot bozo left my screen, I unmuted my television, where Dave Maloney, now on camera, said:

“Fans have been asking me all day, is this the year that the Rangers win another Cup?”

Who are these fans? Drug addicts with fried brains?

“ANOTHER CUP!?!?!?!?”

How about winning just one this century.

One Stanley Cup victory in 83-years.


Do these people think that the Rangers are one of those old Montreal dynasty teams?

As the broadcast progressed, captain Jacob Trouba told Michelle Gingras that no message was needed for this club – as they all know what the goal is.

While he didn’t say “ANOTHER CUP,” Trouba alluded to winning the silver chalice.

And wow – this interview, conducted at the Rangers’ bench, saw the Blueshirts skate at 978669786976 miles-per-hour – as no joke – Gingras’ hair was flopping around all over the place, like Sam Rosen’s toupee in a tornado.

After Hank pumped Panarin’s tires (he said that when #10 is on, he’s one of the most scariest players in the league); I was left wondering – WHAT COLOR TAPE WERE THE RANGERS USING DURING WARM-UPS!!??!?!?!

Yeah right!

No joke, and as we saw some of the pregame warm-ups – I also noticed that the arena was about 10% full at the time.

I guess “nobody gives a shit” (Mollie) about warm-up tape – except when it suits their own (media-driven) narrative – as regular fans do not care about this crap.

Just win!

In Lundqvist’s final segment, which was prerecorded for whatever reason (it just looked odd, as he had fans behind him to start and then it was pitch black behind him during this), he talked about what it felt like to play in a home-opener.

The topic of tripping over TV camera/cable wires was also brought up (it’s 2023 – there isn’t a wireless option?) – but no shot of Crybaby Lias Andersson was to be found.

Lastly, and as teased earlier – the conclusion of this mailed-in mess.

Bill “I’ll sell you my mother for five cents” Pidto had M$GN’s “gambling guru,” the (ALLEGED) methed-up Alex Monaco, at the “BUD LIGHT BAR.”

These two, when speaking to kids and impressionable teens who were watching this broadcast (their parents can’t afford to take them to a home opener), then spent ten-minutes talking about how to bet on the game, what a money line is, what a puck line is, what an over/under is, and where really, I’m surprised that these two didn’t end the segment by saying:


I can’t say that I’m “offended” or anything like that – because after all, nothing offends me – but this was the most disgusted that I’ve ever been (and that says a lot, especially after dealing with Vagistat for all of these years) when watching this M$G Network – where wouldn’t you it – they now have blocked me on Twitter for sharing these same thoughts on Elon Musk’s app!

“Please block common sense and all human decency responsibly.”


The quick-and-dirty? Super Shestyorkin dominated again, including during a second period where it took the Rangers nearly 13-minutes to record their first shot on goal.


The first frame at M$G this season saw the nomads from Arizona take control, where it wasn’t really until the final five-minutes or so when the Blueshirts finally got something going for the first time.

Systems and structure?

Yeah, none of that tonight.

Following the player and team introductions, where 1990s scramblevision pornography music blared through the speakers (I was hoping that new trainer Andy Hosler would receive boos – or just hear chants of “WE WANT RAMSAY!” – but alas neither transpired), and where the only Ranger to receive light jeering was the most likely suspect (Jonathan Quick); the big-time baritone, John Brancy, belted out the national anthem.

And give it up for the young vocalist.

I couldn’t imagine a world where someone would be able to step into the shoes of the late and great John Amirante, but alas, here we are.

I guess similar to starting goaltenders, the Rangers have been very fortunate with their national anthem singers.

Your 2023-24 New York Rangers: Just like last year, but now with the words systems and structure thrown around aimlessly! Photo Credit: Johnny Lazarus

DJ MIKA won the first faceoff of the game, where right afterwards – the Coyotes got the puck and CZAR IGOR made his first save of twenty-six just twenty-nine seconds into the game – aka – “THE RANGERS’ WAY!”

Right after that, THE TROO TROO TRAIN, who must’ve been inspired by Connor Bedard’s first goal, tried a wrap-around shot at ‘Zona goalie, Connor Ingram.

While this shot was stopped, this was a hell of an attempt – and I didn’t know that Trouba had something like this in him.

But alas, Ingram remained flawless here – and as predicted on my Tweeter/X account prior to the game – you just knew that he was going to have a hell of a game – aka – “THE RANGERS’ WAY” – as no one loves propping up young, inexperienced and back-up goalies like the Blueshirts.

And for that matter?

The two goals that Ingram gave up tonight weren’t on him at all.

Another thing that I predicted (and you guys and gals predicted this too)?

Sam Rosen having issues with Logan Cooley and Will Cuylle, as both surnames are pronounced the same.

I’m not making this up.

During Cooley’s first shift, the Joe Bidenesque (senile) announcer said, “OH JOE, LOGAN COOLEY AND WILL CUYLLE, NO RELATION JOE.”

And he said this with a straight face – just like the time when he informed us that K’Andre Miller and Colin Miller weren’t brothers either.

Never change Sam, never change!

Adam Fox, who has had success in the past with his backhander, had a shot blocked by a Coyote, where following it – the road team employed a lengthy attack, one that saw CZAR IGOR’s crease get crowded – and one that the net-minder said NYET NYET too.

At the 4:10 mark, Ingram made his first of three brutal turnovers/failed clears, but the Rangers would never capitalize on any of them and as Lafreniere failed to do here.

Panarin, who led the team with four shots on goal (but it felt like fourteen) had his first shot denied at the 4:25 mark – a heck of a save for another no name goalie on M$G ice.

As the two teams traded back-and-forth chances, including one play where Fox made a big hit and forced a turnover; CZAR IGOR then stopped Nick Bjugstad from a foot away.

It was also around this time when Joe Micheletti busted out his compass and said the words “north-south” and “east-west” as many times as he shrieks out the word “FABULOUS” on these broadcasts.

At one point, I thought he was talking about Kanye’s kid, North West.

Down to 12:30 remaining – some fright – as Bjugstad hit Lindgren, where following the collision, #55 gingerly skated back to the Rangers’ bench.

The Ultimate Warrior never missed a shift – but as noted earlier – it did feel like the Desert Dogs were targeting him all game – and this eventually led to the big brouhaha at the end of the match.

And since this number was in my head all game, especially since Bill “ROB YOUR LOCAL BANK” Pidto and Alex “SELL YOUR MOTHER’S JEWELRY” Monaco promoted it during the pregame show – the Rangers were a -235 favorite to win tonight – a line which I thought was extremely ridiculous.

Sure, the Blueshirts did prevail by a final score of 2-1 – but in no way were they 2.35 times as good as this young-and-rising Coyotes team.

And if it wasn’t for CZAR IGOR, then it would’ve been Arizona that looked 2.35 times as good as New York.

Lindgren, as mentioned, didn’t miss a shift, and once returned – he immediately blocked a backdoor rebound gimmie goal with 9:00 remaining.

As it was perceived that Lavy had hit the line blender again (Gallant’s fault, am I right?); we saw a nasty gash under Cuylle’s right eye, while Sam & Joe pledged their hearts to Cooley.

With 6:18 to go, Miller had his finest moment of the match, when he forced a turnover, streaked into the zone and then left a perfect drop pass for Kreider – where the end result was a big save for Ingram.

Ingram wouldn’t stop CK20 the next time.

On a rare defensive miscue from the ‘Yotes; Kaapo Kakko found his two linemates bursting into Arizona’s zone and then made a pass to Zibanejad. This set-up a 2 x 1 odd-man rush – and also the first goal scored at M$G this season:

1-0, GOOD GUYS, Kreider’s 269th goal as a New York Ranger – and of his career.

(And yes, I am a huge fan of any player who stays with one team for their whole career. That’s so hard to do these days.)

But of course, and because it’s “THE RANGERS’ WAY” – just sixteen seconds after the goal, Trocheck was boxed for interfering with Cooley.

Following two saves from CZAR IGOR, with 27-seconds left on the kill and 3:59 in the period – Matias Maccelli slashed Bonino – which meant that we now had some foreplay followed by a 1:33 Rangers’ power-play.

No goals were scored here, but this power-play did look effective.

1-0, GOOD GUYS, after one period.

Here’s what I said at the time:

Lafreniere Watch Update: 0 goals, 0 assists, 0 points, 0 shots on goal, 0-2 on faceoffs and zero offensive presence for the man who looks like he’s auditioning for the Notre Dame “Fighting Irish” mascot job. Photo Credit: NYR


This middle frame was an unmitigated disaster.

The only good thing about it?

No Vagistat during the intermission. Keep that trend going!

After Rosen squealed out his usual question, “SECOND PERIOD, WHAT DO YOU LOOK FOR HERE JOE?” – M$GN also gave us a video tribute of Slammin’ Sammy, now in his 40th year at the network.

For new readers unaware – for all of my Rosen jokes – that’s what they are – jokes. I’m just trying to make you laugh and give you something different than everyone else.

I’m a fan – and when he eventually retires – I’m going to miss him.

I also missed the Rangers’ offense during this second stanza.

As stated earlier, it took the Rangers nearly thirteen minutes to register their first shot on goal.

In other words, they were bad, and where even the funeral goers at Morgue $quare Garden were booing at points.

But of course, the biggest of boos were saved for the incompetent officials.

Let’s blow through these crappy twenty-minutes as fast as possible.

With 16:36 remaining, Schneider, still struggling a bit, but better with Gustafsson than whenever partnered with Zac “Walker’s Wet Spot” Jones, was boxed for holding Cooley.

The Coyotes never left the Rangers’ zone during this power-play, where the best thing to take place is when Lindgren pinned two Desert Dogs to the boards, thus running off about 20-25 seconds from the clock.

But again – the puck didn’t leave the zone either.

With a clean 15:00 remaining – Clayton Keller, from the dot to the left of CZAR IGOR, ripped a one-timed missile into the Rangers’ net.

1-1 – a power-play goal allowed.

This was a 50/50 puck for the 2022 Vezina Trophy winner – but it’s not a goal allowed that you’d lose sleep over either.

But of course, that negative trend continued tonight – there’s always one play, one brain-fart, one penalty kill, one defenseman miscue – that always mars CZAR IGOR’s bid for a shutout.

Just 36-seconds later, it was Miller’s turn to take a two-minute powder in the sin bin after holding Travis Boyd.

This Arizona power-play felt reminiscent to the Rangers – they fancy-passed themselves out of scoring opportunities, and as a result, these two-minutes were killed.

Once returned to full strength, Filip Chytil, who was just awful tonight, missed a wide-open net and then on his next shot, had it deflected. He screamed in frustration, thus allowing everyone to know that he was rattled.

At the half-way mark of the game/period, the Rangers had no shots on goal. Impressive.

With 9:20 remaining, the Rangers received a power-play themselves, as Dermott held the stick (not that one you freak) of the captain.

Following a Mika <DING>, with 8:03 remaining, Ingram made his first save of the period – a denial on the Swedish-Iranian deejay.

Down to six-minutes remaining, and with Mika’s lone SOG as the only one on the board at the time – the M$G boo-birds were out again.

Nick Bonino, credited with a game-high three blocked shots, but it felt like much more than that, came up with another with 5:03 remaining.

A minute later, CZAR IGOR stopped Cooley’s mini-breakaway scoring threat.

Come 3:24 left to be played, Lindgren, Lafreniere and Cuylle had a scrum with the ‘Yotes, as the Rangers were getting sick of the visitors going after #55 all game.

And had Cuylle dropped the gloves at this point – I think M$G would have exploded – as they were just dying for something to cheer about.

Now under ninety-seconds remaining, and in what could’ve been a turning point in the game – and I guess that it was – at least from a Rangers’ defensive aspect, the following:

Listen, I’m not going to sit here and bury referee Kelly Sutherland.

It’s not easy being a referee and it’s not like this type of human error occurs at a frequent rate.

As they say, “Shit Happens.”

Did Panarin (and the Rangers) get screwed here?

Of course, but as Jimmy Conway was once told in Goodfellas – there was nothing that could be done about it.

However, what I will bury the officials for is what happened afterwards – and no less than just six-seconds later.

Following Sutherland preventing a Panarin breakaway and/or a two v. one chance; the officials gifted the Coyotes a 5 x 3 power-play.

Lafreniere was boxed for a light slash, while Lindgren was boxed for “unsportsmanlike conduct” – for shooting the puck after a whistle to the other end of the ice.

So much for MAKE UP CALLS.

I mean really – how incompetent can you be?


Making matters worse, and as talked about earlier – Lindgren, Lafreniere and Cuylle were scrapping with fellow ‘Yotes all game, including Barrett Hayton, Matt Dumba(ss) and Nick Bjugstad.

I’m all for letting them play – but to box only one team here – where again – TOOK PLACE JUST SIX SECONDS AFTER YOU EFFED UP – well that was just as bad as Pidto and Monaco during the pregame show.

The only “good thing” to come out of this was that this was a wrap-around power-play, so the Coyotes didn’t have a clean two-minutes here.

Then again, there was another good thing.

CZAR FREAKIN’ IGOR, who in total, finished this game with seven short-handed saves.

1-1 tie after two periods.

Here’s what I said at the time:

A new prop bet for M$GN who loves to push such things? What happens first – a CZAR IGOR fight or a CZAR IGOR goal?


DJ MIKA won the opening draw of the final frame which then helped the Rangers kill the final seconds on the ‘Yotes power-play.

Once returned to full strength, Chytil made a brutal turnover – one that his goaltender bailed him out on.

At the near two-minute mark, Bonino kicked off a 2 x 1 odd-man rush, but a Coyote was able to make the slide-block to prevent the go-ahead goal.

As fans continued to chant “ASSHOLE” and “THESE REFS SUCK” – I thought to myself how it’s amusing and comical how Rosen always tells us, “OH JOE, IT’S A LET’S GO RANGERS CHANT UP FROM THE CROWD,” but never brings up these types of strong vocalizations.

With 12:42 remaining – a rare Rangers’ break – as Dumba(ss) cowardly cross-checked Lindgren, who again, may as well have wore a Target store themed jersey tonight.

Following two Ingram saves on Zibanejad, a puck-luck goal for Trocheck, and where this is true too – he put himself in the right position to score it:

In real-time, it looked like Panarin scored this goal, but upon further review, Trocheck got a piece of it.

Either way, 2-1, GOOD GUYS.

And let’s give credit to the blind-as-a-bat Rosen – as he called this goal correctly for Trocheck – where he mentioned that knew #16 got a piece of it based on the way that he celebrated.

Players know.

So did Rosen.

Sometimes, the Hall of Famer still has his fastball!

Prior to the Rangers’ power-play, Fox, who picked up the secondary assist on this eventual game-winning tally, was tripped up by Keller, where once falling, he landed head-first on the ice.

If the bird-brain Rangers’ beat brought this up, then I didn’t see it – but following Trocheck’s goal, Fox was pulled from the game and went to the locker room.

He’d later return, but since the media didn’t ask Laviolette or Fox about this (and from what I saw during the M$GN post-game show) – I’m left to suspect/assume that #23 was pulled from the game by a concussion spotter – and then cleared all testing once in the locker room.

Now with the lead, the Blueshirts went into their 1-3-1 STRUCTURED SYSTEM – and didn’t allow much.

That said, there was one chink in the armor, as with 4:48 remaining, Goodrow was forced to hold Zucker on a breakaway.

The end result?

A penalty shot – and a chance to tie the game.

Igor’s response?

“Child please.”

Take a look:

That was it – game over.

And as Trocheck would later say after the game, and I’m paraphrasing him – “I’d rather have Igor face a penalty shot than having to face a power-play.”

What the center meant is that he trusts CZAR IGOR on one-on-one situations, where no tips, deflections, screens, or anything else, can hamper him.

Let’s go to the end.

Following Ingram being pulled twice – but very late – as the Rangers just controlled the puck – and really, the Coyotes never had a chance with their net empty; there was one more faceoff to be had, following an icing, and with just .5 seconds remaining.

In other words, 2-1, GOOD GUYS, FINAL, as once the puck was dropped the horn then went off.

But we weren’t done yet, as once the horn blared and that rainbow-themed game winning music went off, I heard another sound in my head, the theme song of Stone Cold Steve Austin:

There were 780678967896789678967867896 penalties called after the game was over (even Mika Zibanejad tried to pile-drive a bitch!) – but man oh man, and without sounding disgusting here – this gave me a raging hard-on – ala Sieve Vagistat looking at his arts-and-crafts charts.

I’m an OLD TIME HOCKEY FAN, and to see my goalie, my favorite player, defend his teammates?

Holy shit.

And I’ll save you from a frame of reference of recent Ranger puck-stoppers – as the only fighting they ever did was with their teammates.

(Am I talking about Georgiev? Am I talking about Lundqvist? You be the judge!)

Why did CZAR IGOR, who needs to stay healthy for this team to even sniff the playoffs, much less do anything in them, feel the need to get involved?

Because just like us – he knows how valuable Ryan Lindgren is.

“He’s Iron Man. Robert Downey Jr. needs to be ready, he [Lindgren] takes his job.” – Stone Cold Shesty after the game.


I wish this brawl took place before the final horn – just so we could see a goalie fight between the two C.I.’s – Connor Ingram and CZAR IGOR!

And for any of you fans who are more technical savvy than me, can you put CZAR IGOR’s head in this video:

Here’s a relieved and jovial Laviolette after his team squeaked out a win:

Not the best lookin’ win in the world, but as said at the top of this – two points is two points.

Also true?

I just can’t get too high or low after a game – outside of individual feats – and as I saw out of CZAR IGOR, Ryan Lindgren and Chris Kreider tonight.

Get me to the playoffs.

Ugh, six months to go.

See ya Thursday night, with a Rangers/Predators GAME REVIEW.

PLUGS TIME! (Buy a book and support my Rangers’ induced therapy bills. After all, I don’t run ads on this site!)

My fourth title and tenth book is now available for preorder!

“The Top 100 Villains of New York Rangers History,” is now available for preorder.

For complete information, please visit: https://bluecollarblueshirts.com/rangerkillers/

The hardcover version of my first book, available now at Amazon.com

My second plug of tonight’s blog – the mandatory plug for my book, “The New York Rangers Rink of Honor and the Rafters of Madison Square Garden.”

As mentioned previously, the book is now available in hardcover, in paperback and in Kindle formats. To purchase a copy of the book, visit this link:


For those still looking for signed paperback versions of the book, I have re-ordered more copies. I now have a few signed copies for sale at $25 a pop (includes shipping price) through me directly. Here is all the information on that:

Order “The New York Rangers Rink of Honor and the Rafters of Madison Square Garden” Book Today

My four-volume set of books, “One Game at a Time – A Season to Remember,” is a game-by-game recount of the Rangers 2021-22 campaign.

My second title as an author, “One Game at a Time – A Season to Remember,” is now available in eBook, paperback and hardcover formats.

To obtain signed copies, visit: https://bluecollarblueshirts.com/onegamebook/

To purchase all four volumes on Amazon, visit: Amazon.com – “One Game at a Time.”

The greatest volume-set of books on Rangers’ history today!

“Tricks of the Trade – A Century-Long Journey Through Every Trade Made In New York Rangers’ History,” a four-volume set of books that meticulously covers every trade made in franchise history, is now on sale.

All four volumes of the title can be purchased on Amazon.com and are presented in three different formats – eBook, paperback and hardcover.

To purchase Volume I: Conn Smythe (1926) – Craig Patrick (1986), visit Amazon.com

To purchase Volume II: Phil Esposito (1986) – Neil Smith (2000), visit Amazon.com

To purchase Volume III: Glen Sather (2000-2015), visit Amazon.com

To purchase Volume IV: Jeff Gorton (2015) – Chris Drury (2022), visit Amazon.com

To purchase signed copies of all four volumes, visit https://bluecollarblueshirts.com/tricksofthetrade/

Here are my last few blogs, in case you missed them:

NYR/CBJ 10/14 Review: The COLUMBUS ROAD-TRIP Edition! That “Damn Cannon,” State of Blue Jacket Fans (They’re Good People), City Impressions, College Bars in THE Ohio State, Arnold v. Bellies, Plane Etiquette v. Going Viral, Whisky v. White Claw, Gambling and Oh Yeah – Everything about the New York Rangers Too, Including Lindgren = MVP!

NYR/CBJ 10/14 Pictorial Review: Over 100 Pictures from Columbus, Ohio (And No Video Review To Overturn Any of Them!)

NYR/BUF 10/12 Review: Blueshirts Barrel Over Buffalo in Season Premiere – But It’s Not How You Start – It’s How You Finish, Bad Puck Luck Mars Otherwise Flawless Game, “Block-And-Blue” NYR, Lafreniere’s Redemption; Lavy’s Motivation, Kreider Drives Special Teams 100-MPH, Lazarus Rises, Reverse Rosen Curses; M$GN & More

If you haven’t already, subscribe to this blog for the next update:

Now on sale!

Don’t forget to order my recently released four-volume set of books, “Tricks of the Trade!”

If you don’t order through me, all four volumes are now available on Amazon.com

For more details, check out: https://bluecollarblueshirts.com/tricksofthetrade/

Thanks for reading.


Sean McCaffrey


@NYCTHEMIC on the Tweeter machine

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *