Greetings and salutations everyone and welcome to another blog here on BlueCollarBlueShirts.com. Patrick Kane who?
On Wednesday night, on national television, the New York Rangers, in Game 21 of the season, the quarter-pole of this 2023-24 campaign, won another “thriller,” this time by a final score of 3-2.
(Holy commas Batman!)
This match, and just like the many that came before it, was a complete roller-coaster – but not exactly an exciting one either – at least not until the end.
For the most part, the cliche of “SAME OLD RANGERS” suited this contest best.
A back-up goalie who entered this game with a 3.47 GAA and .887 save percentage having one of the best games of his life? Check.
Blowing a lead nearly as fast as you gained it? Check.
Allowing two quick goals scored within a time-span of just under thirty-seconds? Check.
“NEVER GIVE UP.”
And oh, this cliche too – “FIND A WAY!”
In a word, the first 49:14 of tonight’s Original Six tilt was “frustrating.”
It was at this mark in the match when K’Andre Miller one-timed a puck past Ville Husso to tie the game at two goals a piece.
But prior to that, the Rangers shot the puck nearly 100 times, 41 shots on goal in total, while 25 shot attempts were blocked by the Wings and with many more attempts that went either high or wide.
While this game wasn’t exactly a carbon copy replica of the Monday night loss to Buffalo; at times, you also experienced feelings of déjà vu.
The Rangers threw everything and anything at the kitchen sink in net, Wings’ goaltender Ville Husso, a backstop that’s currently part of a three-man rotation (and if you have three goalies, then you really have none) – but each-and-every time, and as we’ve seen so many times before – there was another opposing goalie channeling every Hall of Fame goaltender imaginable.
In the first period alone, Husso was the biggest penalty killer against two separate Ranger power-plays, as he made five tremendous saves, got bailed out by his trusted friend (the post), and then used his butt-cheeks to clench the rabbit foot that was tightly wedged into his five-hole when Chris Kreider missed a gaping and vacated net.
But even when Husso wasn’t lucky he was good.
For a final score that read as 3-2, and despite the Rangers needing to make a comeback in order to win – this game could have easily been 8-2, 9-2 or even 10-2 – but Ville “Billy Smith” Husso wasn’t having any of it.
Alexis Lafreniere, who I now think has well-earned the CONSISTENT label following his past month of hockey, set-up HARTEMI Panarin for the game’s first goal at the 4:37 mark of the second stanza.
But alas, old habits die hard.
No less than four-minutes later – boom – Moritz Seider scored a power-play goal to tie the game – and where of course, former Ranger, and one of the late fan-favorites from the 2021-22 team, Andrew Copp, aka ROBOCOPP, picked up the apple.
Just 23-seconds later?
THE ROBOCOPP picked up his second assist on Robby Fabbri’s 2-1, bad guys, goal.
Following the Wings’ go-ahead goal, which was scored just 54-seconds shy of the halfway mark of the game; for the next twenty-minutes of game clock, the Rangers did everything but score.
However, Miller would eventually score his one-timer following a feed from Zibanejad with nearly ten-minutes remaining in the final frame.
Tie ball game.
With just under seven-minutes remaining, Lafreniere, aggressive all night, and who in my opinion, was the MVP of this match (and easily at that), was boxed for holding Jake Walman.
This penalty, like most, was somewhat questionable, but to be fair, there was also some merit in the call.
The Rangers did a fantastic job on this particular penalty kill (overall, they finished four of five, a success rate of 80%), and just sixteen-seconds after being released from the sin bin – BOOM – there was Lafreniere streaking up ice and rifling a shot from dead-center at Husso.
Once again, the goalie made the save.
However, for the “House of Husso,” “The Sultan of Swat,” aka Jimmy Vesey, was there for the mid-air rebound.
With the puck dangling in the air, and as if it was depicted in Hollywood slow-motion – BOOM – there was Vesey for the swat, as he batted the puck right into the net.
3-2, GOOD GUYS.
Of course, the officials had to review this play, but on a night where you had to wonder if the NHL is feeling the pressure of their conspiracy theory against the Blueshirts – the goal was upheld.
(More on the officials below, but BUY A LOTTO TICKET – the Rangers went a perfect two-for-two on video replay reviews – and they have also won their last three.)
But the game wasn’t over yet.
With one more penalty to kill, following 2023 Oscar Nominee Daniel Sprong’s Olympic dive, the Rangers had to play the final two-minutes of this game a man-down – and worse than that – with the best faceoff center in the league, Vincent Trocheck, in the box.
Like a James Bond movie, the Rangers personified “NEVER SAY DIE!”
Blueshirts’ captain Jacob Trouba, who finished tonight’s tilt with a team-high five blocked shots, and much like his team – saved his best for last.
Two late blocked shots from “THE GREAT EIGHT” preserved the lead.
A last second blocked shot from his fellow letter-man, Barclay Goodrow, sealed the deal.
On a night where the Rangers risked having their first two-game losing streak of the season – they weren’t having any of that.
As a result, the following:
I know this was a different style of intro than usual, but why not?
Much like the Rangers finding different ways to win, I wanted to write differently too!
But before I get too far out from my comfort zone, let’s get back to the normal format here.
Up first, all of the pregame news and notes (and there’s a lot) and then right into the GAME REVIEW.
In case you missed it, I covered all of the news from a very busy Tuesday here: https://bluecollarblueshirts.com/112823/
I’d suggest that you read that blog if you haven’t done so already, because right after publishing it, the Red Wings made it official – Patrick Kane is now a member of their roster.
On Tuesday morning, during Detroit’s morning skate, there was #88, now with the familiar Spoked Wheel on his chest:
— Detroit Red Wings (@DetroitRedWings) November 29, 2023
My initial impression when I saw Kane skating around M$G ice with a red, and not a blue, sweater?
God damn pal, was I envious of the Motor City.
My second thought?
I just hope that I’m proven wrong and that Kane doesn’t go on to light it up for Detroit – as the Rangers could have easily brought him back.
After tonight’s blog (he was a focus of the TNT broadcast, so I have to mention it below), I’m done talking about the new #88 in Detroit for a while.
My promise to you – You won’t see his name again on this site until the Rangers and Wings play again or unless something crazy and/or controversial happens.
At the time, there was rampant speculation that Kane would actually make his 2023-24 debut tonight.
In a way, it made sense – national game, Showtime in Primetime, the lure of M$G, sticking it to Chris Drury, playing against his former team, etc.
While many predicted that Kane would lace his skates tonight, and I admit it – I bought into it too – I also thought it was awfully quick in the event that had it happened.
Rather than jumping right into the pool, I thought he’d get his feet wet first.
And that’s how it ultimately played out, where it’s now being reported that Kane will need seven-to-ten days in order to acclimate to his new surroundings before going full-boar with the Little Caesars’ citizens.
Let’s move on from the latest member of the Blueshirts’ alumni and now get into the Rangers of today.
As Patrick Kane was doing his thing, also on Wednesday morning, the Blueshirts held an optional practice.
Nothing of note took place (again, check out last night’s blog for more).
At around noon, the head coach held his mandatory pregame “LAVY’S LOUNGE.”
Here it is:
Really, nothing was truly gained here, as we already knew everything that was going on.
Also speaking to the media prior to Wednesday night’s game was Adam Fox, but it was what you’d expect – he’s happy to be back, he’s proud of how the team played in his absence and yadda-yadda-yadda.
Here was Laviolette’s line-up for the twenty-first game of this 2023-24 season – and the 25% mark of the campaign too:
FIRST LINE: Kreider/Zibanejad/Wheeler
SECOND LINE: Panarin/Trocheck/Lafreniere
THIRD LINE: Cuylle/Bonino/Brodzinski
FOURTH LINE: Vesey/Goodrow/Pitlick
FIRST PAIR: Lindgren/Fox
SECOND PAIR: Miller/Trouba
THIRD PAIR: Gustafsson/Schneider
STARTER: CZAR IGOR
HEALTHY SCRATCH: Jones
LONG TERM INJURED RESERVE: Chytil and Kakko
BOX SCORE time.
The following graphics and information come from ESPN.com:
V. Husso G
Tonight’s game was aired on TNT – a huge breath of fresh air from the pregame show garbage that we always get from the M$GN.
Not once did we hear such tripe as “the royal road,” “east-west passing,” “my groin is bloody Johnny,” “Clear-Sighted Assholes,” “expected slot line chances,” “please look at me Hank,” and of course, there was no mention of “The Ramrod” either.
“THE KING OF COMMENTARY,” Henrik Lundqvist, who has always been featured better on the national network rather than on his own home network, was back in the Atlanta studio with Paul Bisonnette and Anson Carter.
Much was made ado about Lundqvist’s recent Hall of Fame induction tonight. I saw some Ranger fans say that they felt this was repetitive, especially since the M$GN has ran the same video package from that weekend about 7986789689667 times over – but keep in mind that this was #30’s first game back on TNT since headlining the Class of ’23.
In other words – I didn’t mind.
Plus, TNT had different footage from that weekend too.
Of course, Kane’s signing in Detroit was brought up first, where Lundqvist said, “if you love hockey then you love Patrick Kane.”
I guess Drury doesn’t have that same type of affection for his former charge.
Following the Kane love-fest, the return of Adam Fox was brought up and where everyone on TNT said how the Blueshirts didn’t miss him.
This was a compliment paid in regards to how well the Rangers have played in his absence – and it wasn’t a knock on the 2021 Norris Trophy winner.
Do you know what wasn’t brought up once?
Filip Chytil on LTIR.
Ditto Kaapo Kakko.
The Rangers won’t miss those two either – but unlike both Chytil & Kakko – Fox’s return was a godsend for the LAVY’S LOT.
Heck, I think the only entity that missed Kakko tonight was the boards.
Furthermore, the people who benefited the most from Kakko’s absence?
The advertisers who promote their wares on the boards – as “The Finnish Flash in the Pan” wasn’t there to block them!
And yes – I hope that Kakko makes me eat my words one day and shuts my fat mouth up.
However, I just don’t see it.
As the pregame show progressed, Lundqvist interviewed Jacob Trouba – and where you can tell that these two have a budding friendship.
Lundqvist brought up that he was going to be attending Trouba’s art show in NYC on Thursday night.
What a life that Lundqvist leads.
Video clips of Trouba’s art were then shown, and man-oh-man, was I entertained.
Apparently, Trouba, while wearing a Tyvek/Hazmat suit, drips himself from head-to-toe in paint – and then runs at full force at an oversized canvas.
Ladies and gentlemen, “The Louvre” presents “THE TROO TROO TRAIN!”
While I’m sure that his original artwork will fetch a pretty penny; the Rangers, who never miss a beat when it comes to copping a buck, need to sell reprints of these masterpieces.
I think that Trouba implied that he wanted to donate proceeds from his artwork to charity – and I’m sure that selling signed reprints of his stuff could do a lot of good for the “Garden of Dreams.”
And for all of the CRAP on the M$GN, like all of the gambling shows hosted by the methed-out freak and the Suge Knight doppleganger; how about Trouba getting his own painting show?
I can see it now – “Trouba’s Happy Little Trees” – and where I’d imagine his style of painting wouldn’t put me to sleep as Bob Ross’ old show used to do.
(And I mean that in a good way – Ross’ voice and dictation was so calming and soothing that he could cure insomnia!)
On Trouba, Lundqvist said, “I was not surprised when he was named captain. You could see he had those qualities. He’s a good hitter because he goes through guys and he does it the right way.”
Changing gears, Carter reiterated the tired and obvious, yet truthful point – Alexis Lafreniere had the most unorthodox start for any first-overall pick in league history.
To close the pregame show, TNT aired an exclusive interview with Kane:
“If anything … my lateral movement and my agility is a lot better than it was.”
— B/R Open Ice (@BR_OpenIce) November 30, 2023
The most quotable stuff about his decision to sign in Detroit?
“I think probably about 2-3 weeks ago we started interviewing with teams that were interested and it kind of went from there. It was a tough decision for sure. It’s been six months since the surgery, you never know where you’re going to play next. My heart was in Detroit.
“Yzerman was big [a part of it] and Derek Lalonde was too. They wanted to know that I was good physically. It was nice to clear all physicals yesterday.
“It was a huge reason [Debrincat being in Detroit]. He’s a great kid, fun kid to be around. He became one of my better friends. I enjoy being around him. He loves hockey, he has passion for the game.
“I’m very confident and I know that I’ll be better than last year. I couldn’t really move laterally. A lot of my plays were plant-legged. I’m excited to get to a high level of play.”
A possible Rangers’ return was never discussed/brought up.
As far as Kane’s heart being in Detroit goes, I guess that makes sense, as this deal screams of “lusting for money.”
Best of luck to him and we can now close this book for the rest of the year.
GAME REVIEW time!
I always love hearing Kenny Albert call games – and one day – I hope to hear him call Ranger games on M$GN.
I also wonder if non-Blueshirt backers think that Albert has a Rangers’ bias – and as we often feel about opposing/rival announcers?
(For example, how can anyone forget about Pierre McGuire’s love for all things Sidney Crosby and the Pittsburgh Penguins! And don’t get me started on Troy Aikman whenever he calls a Dallas Cowboys’ game!)
While I don’t think that Albert sounds like a “homer” at all – you can see that he knows everything going on about the team too – as tonight, he routinely threw in little factoids and far-fetched minutiae that only someone who watches this team game in and game out would know.
In other words, and in the same vein – I’m not so sure if he could tell us every development that’s going on in Winnipeg.
Then again, he is the best at what he does – so he probably can!
In either event, and I don’t care what it costs – M$GN must pay the man when Sam Rosen decides to settle down with his grandkids.
And let’s face it – Albert is being wasted on Rangers’ radio.
(Does anyone know how many fans on average listen to the Rangers on radio these days?)
After all, Albert IS the lead voice in all of hockey today – and as his gig with TNT would suggest.
(Of note: I still have his recently released autobiography sitting on my desk. I just have to find the time to read it, but I have put it on the top of the twenty books that I have stacked up. Once I can find the time to devour the book, then I’ll post a review on this site.)
CZAR IGOR, who actually received criticism from Ranger fans tonight (more below), made his first save at the 1:10 mark when he stoned Fabbri from a foot out.
Following that save, the first of six in this period – it was all Rangers.
At just the 1:53 mark, Perron hooked Trocheck from the do-no-wrong Blueshirts’ second line.
As a result, the Rangers’ power-play could do no wrong either – but they also didn’t score.
But it wasn’t for a lack of trying.
During the PP1’s initial attack, a Mika one-timer was stopped, a Mika-to-Kreider deflection hit the post, a Panarin-to-Kreider try just missed a soccer-sized net and that was that.
Heck, when the PP2 came on, JONNY HOCKEY (Brodzinski) got away with a crosscheck at the circle. Who knew that the refs had Brodzinski’s back?
All in all, Husso made four saves during the Rangers’ man-advantage – and got one <DING> too.
As the boards looked as lonely and scared as a little kid losing his mother in busy shopping mall, as these pieces of wood missed Kakko all game; the Rangers continued to buzz but they couldn’t sting Husso – yet.
And oh, proof of what I said earlier about Panarin?
Here ya go:
Panarin is dazzling, has a shot blocked, but you feel like he will score, just has that DQ SWAGGER going. #NYR
— BlueCollarBlueShirts (@NYCTheMiC) November 30, 2023
Following a pair of Detroit icings with 12:54 remaining, and where Laviolette was shown snapping at the gum harder than former Rangers’ coach Alain Vigneault ever did (heck, Lavy chews his gum as hard as a TROO TROO TRAIN hit); the Blueshirts’ fourth line trio continued to dictate the pace in the Wings’ zone.
Down to 10:36 remaining – and this did feel like deja vu from Saturday – Lafreniere and Panarin had a two-vs-one odd-man rush, but following #13’s pass, #10 went wide.
Prior to what eventually took place, this did feel like the Bruins’ game, as there were about 3-4 times where Lafreniere should’ve had an assist next to his name, but the Rangers just couldn’t finish the job.
As we crossed the half-way mark of the period, the Rangers were out-shooting their opponents 6-2 – and where Detroit looked as threatening as Kaapo Kakko.
With 9:06 remaining, Trocheck drew his second penalty, as this time, Olli Maatta had hooked him.
This power-play was reminiscent of the first, as the Rangers did everything but score.
Yawn – a Mika one-timer went wide.
Yawn – another back-up goalie channeled his inner Dominik Hasek, this time when Husso stopped Trocheck from ten-inches away.
Yawn – “The House of Husso” was a house on fire, as the goalie with the near 4.00 GAA robbed a Lafreniere-to-Wheeler whammy.
Then, and for good measure – once the teams returned to full-strength – Husso stopped Panarin again too.
There’s a reason why BACK UP GOALIES is one of my featured “RANGER KILLERS” in my new book! (Check the PLUGS segment located at the end of this manifesto for more.)
Jonny Hockey, who had four shots on goal tonight, which means that in just one game, he surpassed Kakko’s SOG total this season, had a one-timer turned down with 5:38 remaining.
Now down to 5:04 on the clock – the first of five straight Detroit power-plays – as the Rangers, following their 0-2 performance, would never get their “third time is a charm” opportunity.
Worse than that?
Four consecutive o-zone penalties.
Vesey was nabbed here for tripping Michael Rasmussen – a legit call.
Also legit? The penalty kill, where CZAR IGOR only had to swat away one measly shot.
Following the kill, and as M$G paid homage to Chris Drury by playing his theme song, “CULT OF PERSONALITY”; CZAR IGOR made his final save of the period with ten-seconds remaining when he neutered DeBrinCAT.
Nil-nil after twenty – and as I felt like I was watching Husso channel another RANGER KILLER in my new book – former Wing netminder, Jimmy Howard.
(Howard vs. Lundqvist always guaranteed low-scoring affairs, where off the top of my head, they probably played in at least a dozen 2-1 final scores.)
Here’s what I said a the time:
Scoreless after 20. 1P Thoughts:
— Feels like the #NYR PP could have scored on both tries. SOG are 10-6 Rangers, and 60% of the NYR SOG are PP SOG.
— Kind of letting Detroit hang around. Feels like the Rangers either blow it open or chase a deficit – nothing in-between.
— BlueCollarBlueShirts (@NYCTheMiC) November 30, 2023
These twenty minutes were much like the first twenty minutes – the Rangers dominated – but unlike the first frame – we had some goals scored.
To their credit, Detroit had the upper-hand early, but following CZAR IGOR snuffing out the early attack, the Rangers went right back on their own attack.
In the opening two-minutes, CZAR IGOR stopped former Flyer Shayne Gostisbehere – twice.
After that, it was time for “THE BREADMAN” to bake, and as he did with 15:23 remaining:
Alexis Lafreniere is getting so consistent with these cross-seam passes.
— Jonny Lazarus (@JLazzy23) November 30, 2023
1-0, GOOD GUYS!
This goal was birthed by K’ANDRE THE GIANT, as Miller forced a turnover in the neutral zone, raced up ice, found Lafreniere – and BANG – another example of the red-hot chemistry on the Rangers’ second line, as Panarin finally got Husso to break.
This “breakage” was only temporary – but at least the levee would break again when it mattered most – with the Rangers looking for a comeback.
The turning point of this game took place with 13:06 remaining.
With the second line back out there, they had a near two-minute attack in Detroit’s zone.
This momentum was soon broken up, when BIG BAD ARTIE was boxed for roughing Perron.
While Panarin has shown more bite than ever before – he also isn’t some sort of a powerful brute either.
Yet, this penalty, another o-zone penalty, was all that it took to reverse the Rangers’ fortunes.
As noted above, with 11:17 to go, Mo Seider scored on the power-play.
23-seconds later, Fabbri scored.
2-1, bad guys.
This is when some people started getting on CZAR IGOR, but since you know he’s my favorite player – not me.
While I’m aware that he isn’t able to shutout anyone these days, the first goal was a power-play goal and the second strike was the end result of Mika missing his man – and GUS BUS accidentally screening the 2022 Vezina Trophy winner too.
And oh yeah, this as well:
CZAR IGOR would never allow another goal after the 985675786785678568 “Blueshirts’ Brain Fart” of the season.
But if only such head gas could be prevented.
As the period continued, Husso continued his own Vezina act.
Down to 9:26 remaining, the third straight Detroit power-play, as this time, Trocheck was boxed for tripping Lucas Raymond.
This was a knee-to-knee hit – a legit penalty.
But do you know what was far worse than this but never called?
Sebastion Asshole’s knee-to-knee hit/trip on Adam Fox.
And unlike Fox, who had to miss ten games following that play – Raymond was right back out there.
As TNT zoomed-in on Detroit head coach Derek Lalonde, I wondered how many kids wouldn’t be able to sleep at night following this close-up.
To me, he looks like Dracula – which is why I always carry garlic, silver and a wooden stake whenever watching the Rangers play the Red Wings.
To others, he looks like Gru, Uncle Fester, or someone who isn’t allowed within 1,000 feet of a school.
For reference, here you go:
The Rangers, now on the kill for the third time, survived these two-minutes, and where CZAR IGOR arrested Copp with twenty-seconds remaining on it.
To prevent being redundant, and in an attempt to speed things up (it’s getting late as I write these words); once returned to full-strength, all we could do is say “HUSSO, HUSSO, HUSSO!” in the Jan Brady voice, as the third-string goalie continued his Ode to Terry Sawchuk.
With 1:40 remaining, Kenny Albert mentioned that Edzo just had a root canal.
Of no coincidence, this period also felt like you had your teeth pulled.
In a new “trend,” the Rangers increased their zero for their last 785675656565 breakaway streak, as this time Ville Humley stoned Wheeler with under a minute remaining.
2-1, bad guys, after forty-minutes.
Here’s what I said at the time:
2-1, bad guys, after 40. 2P Thoughts:
— Rangers’ Tradition: Two quick goals allowed, blow a lead and turn a back-up goalie into Georges Vezina. Check, check and check.
— Panarin & Lafreniere are leading the offense, not much elsewhere.
— That fugazi Panarin penalty changed…
— BlueCollarBlueShirts (@NYCTheMiC) November 30, 2023
I already talked about how this game was won, so let’s just hit the pertinent stuff that took place during this final frame.
CZAR IGOR, like the team, saved his best for last.
Of his 25-saves, 11 of them took place during these final twenty-minutes, including his first, which took place at just the 38-second mark, when he robbed J.T. Compher from the short-side.
With 17:45 remaining, Cuylle was erroneously penalized for boarding Gostisbehere. This was a clean hit, as the Wing didn’t have his back fully turned.
Once hearing this massive crunch of humanity, Klim Kostin jumped Cuylle.
At the time, no penalty was assessed to Cuylle.
Following this tango, both Cuylle and Kostin were boxed.
I’ll never understand why the NHL is so arbitrary and inconsistent whenever dealing with player retaliation.
Up next, it just felt like one of those types of games, as Kreider was stopped on a breakaway while Trocheck missed a GAPING (everyone loves that word) net that was more wide-open than a porn star needing a quick buck.
Down to 14:27 remaining, and now back on the ice – Cuylle was boxed for four-minutes for drawing blood with a high-stick on Raymond – or so we thought.
In your first BUY A LOTTO ticket moment, the officials got this right.
Since they called a double-minor here, they were allowed to review the penalty.
Upon review, it was obvious – Raymond grabbed Cuylle’s stick, and like a pro wrestler using a razor blade to draw blood – did the same.
I’ll give Raymond credit for being creative here.
Another cliche for yours truly, the man of many?
“If you’re not cheating, then you’re not trying!”
But praise the hockey gods – the refs got this right – and then rescinded the penalty.
My only beef?
Shouldn’t Raymond have received an embellishment penalty for this?
Then again, following a season (off the top of my head, I want to say it was the 2014-15 campaign) where embellishment penalties were called in every game – we don’t see them called anymore.
For whatever reason, Count Lalonde was furious about this penalty being erased.
I think he even told the pimple-faced referee, T.J. Luxemore, that he wanted to suck his blood.
As I was wondering if the Rangers used up all of their goals allowance this week following their touchdown scored against Boston; with 10:46 remaining, Mika cracked himself open a can of MILLER TIME:
Hell of a poised play by Mika and an absolute rip by K’Andre Miller.
The assist extends Zibanejad’s point streak to five games. pic.twitter.com/PTwU7dPNSF
— Jonny Lazarus (@JLazzy23) November 30, 2023
2-2 – as following a Mika deke – boom – Miller for the one-timer!
Following the goal, Husso continued his Roger Crozier act.
With 7:18 remaining, a game-changer save, as CZAR IGOR robbed Raymond.
Up next, what I talked about earlier – Lafreniere setting up Vesey’s game-winner once out of the sin bin:
Incredible finish by Vesey, but Lafreniere makes this whole play happen by taking the middle of the ice and drawing in that #LGRW defensemen.
13 has been the Rangers best forward tonight. pic.twitter.com/onpG9uaCmM
— Jonny Lazarus (@JLazzy23) November 30, 2023
3-2, GOOD GUYS, as Jimmy Vesey continues to shine in his new vocation.
I’ve talked so much about Vesey changing his game and extending his career before – and this goal – and really, ever since coming back to New York too – was a perfect example of this.
And just like Bobby Carpenter, who once did the same – I hope Vesey wins a Stanley Cup this season too!
Following the video replay review (GOOD GOAL!); up next – ass sweat time.
I have to question Dracula Lalonde here.
With his team now on the power-play with 1:56 remaining – he didn’t take a timeout – nor did he pull Husso until there was only 1:15 remaining.
Granted, I’m just a beer-bellied bullshit blogger (but a ten-time award winning author too!), where in addition – I’m a hockey fan – and not a career hockey man like Lalonde – but I just found his decision to pocket his timeout and then burn forty-seconds of a potential 6 x 4 attack when chasing a goal to be perplexing.
But that’s a problem for Detroit fans – and not me.
This game wasn’t over until it was over.
With 15-seconds remaining, Trouba came up with a pair of blocks.
Following the puck going out of play with only six ticks left to go – this is when Lalonde took his timeout.
Again, perhaps the garlic from the roast beef sandwiches in M$G were in the air tonight – because I just don’t understand this strategy at all.
With the best faceoff man in the game in the box; Lavy went with Bonino to take the final – and biggest – draw of the game.
While not exactly Craig MacTavish on June 14th, 1994 – Bonino won the draw – but the Wings still got the puck anyway.
Goodrow blocked a shot and that was that.
3-2, GOOD GUYS, FINAL.
It’s tough to call this victory a “stolen win” or anything of the sort, because after all, Husso was just lights-out.
But this defeat of Detroit was another testament to these 2023-24 Rangers ability to rebound, as once again, they displayed their diligent style of resiliency.
Here’s a happy Lavy after the two-points netted:
Up next for the Rangers: A back-to-back weekend set, on Saturday in Nashville and then a meeting with David Quinn’s Sharks on Sunday at M$G.
Up next on this site: My annual Quarter-Pole Progress Report Card!
Spoiler: I’ve been doing these report card blogs (25%, 50% and Final) for nearly a decade now.
While whatever I write and feel doesn’t impact whatever the final result of this season may be, I can tell you this: I’ve never handed out as many A+’s as I will be doing this Friday, when I post this report card.
And that says a lot, as like Mike Francesa, “I’m a hard marker, okay!”
Furthermore, and this fact does drag down grades: Unlike others who do the same (giving out grades) – I DO factor-in salary-cap hits.
But even with that said, and here’s your last spoiler too: How can I not give Jimmy Vesey, Erik Gustafsson, Jonathan Quick, Vincent Trocheck, Alexis Lafreniere, and even the highest-paid winger in the league, Artemi Panarin, anything but an A+?
The same goes for Peter Laviolette.
Back on Friday.
And oh yeah, I almost forgot…
Everything is groovy in Rangerstown, USA right now, but still, the only thing that matters – my season-long daily disclaimer!
You know, the following:
“WHATEVER THE RANGERS DO IN THE REGULAR SEASON DOESN’T MATTER. THEY CAN ONLY BE JUDGED BY WHATEVER THEY DO IN THE 2024 STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS!”
Report cards on Friday.
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/
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 $25 a pop (includes shipping price) through me directly. Here is all the information on that:
My four-volume set of books, “One Game at a Time – A Season to Remember,” is a game-by-game recount of the Rangers 2021-22 campaign.
My second title as an author, “One Game at a Time – A Season to Remember,” is now available in eBook, paperback and hardcover formats.
To obtain signed copies, visit: https://bluecollarblueshirts.com/onegamebook/
To purchase all four volumes on Amazon, visit: Amazon.com – “One Game at a Time.”
The greatest volume-set of books on Rangers’ history today!
“Tricks of the Trade – A Century-Long Journey Through Every Trade Made In New York Rangers’ History,” a four-volume set of books that meticulously covers every trade made in franchise history, is now on sale.
All four volumes of the title can be purchased on Amazon.com and are presented in three different formats – eBook, paperback and hardcover.
To purchase Volume I: Conn Smythe (1926) – Craig Patrick (1986), visit Amazon.com
To purchase Volume II: Phil Esposito (1986) – Neil Smith (2000), visit Amazon.com
To purchase Volume III: Glen Sather (2000-2015), visit Amazon.com
To purchase Volume IV: Jeff Gorton (2015) – Chris Drury (2022), visit Amazon.com
To purchase signed copies of all four volumes, visit https://bluecollarblueshirts.com/tricksofthetrade/
Here are my last few blogs, in case you missed them:
LTIRangers: The Blueshirts Get Back Adam Fox From LITR; Kaapo Kakko & Filip Chytil Placed On It, Kakko’s Potential Season-Ending Injury Hurts Him More Than His Team, The Book of Kane Closed; Let The Book of Tarasenko Reopen, JONNY HOCKEY Hoping to Pull a GUS BUS, Corey Perry’s Alleged Affair & More
NYR/BUF 11/27 Review: The Sky Isn’t Falling! First-Place Rangers Lose To Their “Winter Classic Rival;” Lose Kakko Too, Patrick Kane Talk Revs Up Again, “Scheduled Loss” vs “Trap Game,” Fox Return Means Bad News For Jones, A Rare Mika One-Timer, Trouba Fined, Back-Up Goalies Never Fail, M$GN & More
NYR/BOS 11/25 Review: DEMOLITION! First-Place Blueshirts Demolish The Bruins; Enjoy a Boston Teabag Touchdown Party, Matinee Magic, Fourth-Line Motorin’; Special Teams Too, Giving “The Pizza Man” Chris Drury His Pepperoni For His Summer of Success, Chytil Nearing Return But Where Does He Fit? Kakko Stinko, Belated NYR/PHI (Mika “The Flyer Killer” Found) Thoughts, M$GN & More
If you haven’t already, subscribe to this blog for the next update:
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.
LET’S GO RANGERS!
@NYCTHEMIC on the Tweeter machine