Greetings and salutations everyone and welcome to another manifesto of a blog, here on BlueCollarBlueShirts.com.
On Friday night, and with three days off since their last game played, the Rangers hosted the Toronto Maple Leafs, in an Original Six showdown at Morgue $quare Garden. When it was all over, it was Toronto with a touchdown, with six total goals and the Rangers with a field goal, with three goals for.
I don’t know how you would rate this loss, as the torching the Rangers took in Tampa earlier this season was pretty bad. However, losing 6-3 at home, with plenty of time to prepare; well that’s pretty disappointing. I feel bad for any Ranger fan who paid jacked up ticket prices for this game. (This was a flex game for the Rangers, as in they flexed the hell out of the ticket prices. Even the Stubhub trick wouldn’t work tonight, as crappy tickets in the 200’s were going for over $200 a pop.)
Going into this game, the two major topics were both related to Rangers head coach David Quinn. If you recall, a few weeks ago, Quinn said the Rangers would never take another “too many men on the ice penalty again.” He also said that the next time that happened, it would be on him. Of course, right after saying that, in the next Rangers game played, the Rangers took one of those penalties.
Before tonight’s game, in the two days Quinn had with the media (the Rangers had off on Tuesday) all Quinn would talk about is the Rangers power-play and how he would get it going. Quinn then went into his tough talk, with plenty of platitudes and generic statements. In turn, the Rangers followed those statements by going 0-3 on their power-play tonight. And you know what was the saddest thing here? Toronto actually had the best shot on goal in this game, during the three separate Ranger power-plays.
While the Rangers lifeless power-play was one topic before tonight’s game, the other topic was the fact that Alexandar Georgiev would be getting the start for this game. This news set off everyone. Even Larry Brooks, the Rangers messenger pigeon at the NY Post, got in on the action. Going into this game, there were all types of talk about the Rangers goaltending situation, from all different positions & viewpoints, such as:
— Georgiev is the number 1 starter.
— The Rangers are forcing Lundqvist out.
— It’s time to bring up Igor.
— The Rangers are showcasing Georgiev to Toronto, a team that needs a back-up goalie the most. (Andersen has been in net for every Toronto win this season. The Toronto back-up goaltenders haven’t produced one victory and have a .000 winning percentage.)
The funniest and most ironic thing here? David Quinn said he was starting Georgiev because of how well Georgiev played against Toronto last season. Georgiev was 2-0, with a shutout and a 55 save game performance against Toronto last year. Why is this funny and ironic? Easy, as I’ll explain right now.
Last week, the Rangers had their Vegas & California road-trip. In those games, Georgiev took the two starts against the two better teams of the trip, where he & the Rangers shut-out the Vegas Golden Knights & beat the San Jose Sharks. Conversely, Lundqvist started against last place LA and against the second-to-last-place Anaheim Ducks.
Now, keep in mind, Quinn said he was starting Georgiev tonight based on his performance against Toronto last season.
If you recall, last season, the LA Kings, a last place team then and now, beat Lundqvist and the Rangers, TWICE. In addition, Georgiev beat the Ducks, TWICE, last season.
So I ask you – how come Georgiev’s performances against Toronto last season factored into this start tonight, but didn’t factor into starting against LA and Anaheim last week?
To me, once again, this is David Quinn talking out of both sides of his mouth and trying to coddle Lundqvist.
With the way Georgiev and the Rangers played tonight, I would expect Lundqvist to start against the second-to-last-place Ducks, during the next Rangers game on Sunday. You know, the same Ducks who Georgiev beat twice last season and who Lundqvist lost to just a week ago.
Before motoring on, as there’s a lot to get into, at this time, here are my last few blogs, in case you missed them:
NYR/NSH 12/16 Review: Saros Brings The “Juuse”; Refs Bring Their Wallets to M$G, Rangers Get Beat Ugly, Short-Bus NYR Power-Play, “As The Lines Change” By David Quinn, Georgiev Expectations, Hall Trade, Valiquette Has a Block Party, NHL Player Safety Farce Meetings & More
NYR/ANA 12/14 Review: Rangers Get a Point; Lundqvist Tosses Himself & Another Point Away, More Fuel for Georgiev vs Lundqvist Debates After Worst Goal Allowed of the Season, Zibanejad & Breadman Continue to Score, Ugly Special Teams, Fire Steve “The Splooge Stooge” Valiquette, Kravtsov Makes it Official & More
NYR/SJS 12/12 Review: A Great Day For The Russian Rangers; Panarin Gets a Hat Trick as NYR Puts Up a TD on SJS, Georgiev Continues to Win, Zibanejad’s Best Game Since Return, Kreider/Boy Meets World, Jeff Gorton Wins “The Cold War”; Kravtsov Returning, Terrible Jacob “El Matador” Trouba, Greschner/Duguay, Micheletti & Much More
NYR v LAK 12/10 Review: King Quick Defeats & Out-Duels Lundqvist Again; Rangers Play Like Crap, NYR Needs NRA To Sponsor Them, Quinn Fails Again, Solid Broadcast from the M$G Crew, Micheletti’s Taco Bell Dump, Vally, Chart Nerds & More From This “I Should’ve Just Slept” Game
NYR/VGK 12/8 Review: The King of Kings Picks Up His Second Shutout in Eight Days; NYR Puts Five Past Subban, Special Teams Show Up, Lundqvist vs Georgiev Talks Heat Up, New GAG Line Delivers, Fire Steve “The Stooge” Valiquette & Vally Observation, See Ya Kravtsov (Again) & More
NYR/MTL 12/6 Review: Montreal Kind Of Gets Their Revenge; Rangers Beat Themselves, King Georgiev Continues To Roll, Brendan Smith Picks Up “The Lone Ranger” Point, The New GAG Line Makes You Gag, Boo-Hoo Boo Nieves, Bad Music, Interesting M$G Networks Development & More
NYR/CBJ 12/5 Review: Alexandar The Great Puts On The Best NYR Goaltender Performance of the Season, Breadman Puts One in the Basket in Columbus Return, DQ Fails In Latest Missive, Micheletti > Vally, Vally Contest/Giveaway, Nerd Stats Mean Oo-Gatz, Duguay & More From a Huge NYR Win
As mentioned previously on this blog, many fans of the Rangers and the writers that cover this team, do not like Tony DeAngelo, just because DeAngelo’s opinions on politics vary from theirs.
Just like the last time the Rangers had a few days off between games, Tony DeAngelo once again went to social media, to talk about current political issues. This time, it was about the Trump impeachment. Here’s what TDA tweeted out on Thursday:
— Tony DeAngelo (@TonyDee07) December 19, 2019
Of course, this tweet set off RANGERSTOWN and social media. It was the same stuff as last time. People who supported Trump supported TDA. People who don’t support Trump want TDA kicked off the team. And of course, the tolerant liberals who want TDA kicked off the team are the same people who say “don’t mix sports with politics”, but in their very next breath, berate DeAngelo for not sharing their opinion.
One such asshole is Sean “The Hack” Hartnett. I’ve covered Hartnett on these blogs before. He writes for the WFAN 660 website. However “writes” is being too kind. What Hartnett does is plagiarize Ranger scribes. He usually lifts columns and paragraphs from Rick Carpiniello. However, recently, Hartnett has lifted sentences, word-for-word, from Larry Brooks and the new man on the beat, in Vince Mercogliano.
I know the Trump topic is a tired and never-ending debate. Just like Lundqvist, no matter how you argue or feel on Trump, what one says is not going to change your opinion. If you like Trump, nothing is going to change that. If you want Lundqvist off this team, nothing anyone says is going to change that either.
However, my bone of contention here, is that if you’re getting PAID to write about the Rangers, even if you just plagiarize and present other people’s material as your own, you can’t go on social media and bury a player for having a non-hockey related opinion that is not yours. It seems that every Rangers scribe and journalist understands that. After all, despite all of TDA’s political tweets and comments this season, NOT ONCE, have you seen any of these writers besmirch or bury TDA for not sharing their own political beliefs.
That last sentence was true, until Thursday, when Sean “The Hack” Hartnett decided to go after TDA.
Here’s what Captain Copy & Paste tweeted out, after DeAngelo’s tweet on the impeachment:
After this tweet, Sean Hartnett actually responded to fans, who were defending DeAngelo and said that DeAngelo & his fans “need to be silenced.” Wow. So much for a country based on the exchange of different ideas, free speech and the right to voice opinions. Of course, if TDA said he wanted to lick Hillary Clinton’s asshole or if he wanted Trump sent to the gallows, then Hartnett would ask TDA to be more vocal!
Here was my response to Hartnett. Keep in mind, I am not PAID to write about the Rangers. I just write these manifestos after games as a hobby. I am not held up to any sort of professional writer code here, as you are probably are aware of by now! Here’s the tweet I sent:
Pretty sad that WFAN’s plagiarizer, in @hartnetthockey, is now attacking Tony DeAngelo over politics. Not professional.
— BlueCollarBlueShirts (@NYCTheMiC) December 19, 2019
My point is this. As I’ve said in the past on these blogs, I do not care how you lean politically or where you’re at on the topic of religion. Everyone has their own opinions. To each their own.
My issue here, is that you have a PAID writer, who spent his entire Thursday on social media, trashing Tony DeAngelo to anyone that would read his drivel. That’s not professional. How can anyone take Hacknett seriously, when he is showing an extreme bias against DeAngelo? This is probably why Hartnett gets paid very little and is not flown to games, like the other professional writers, such as Brett Crygalis, Larry Brooks, Colin Stephenson, Rick Carpiniello and Vince Mercogliano are.
And in all honesty, it’s amazing that WFAN would even give one cent to Hartnett, when you can read his columns two days before, by reading the NY Post, the Athletic or LoHud.
If you are into self-punishment, you can check out Hartnett’s other tweets on DeAngelo, which are all mean-spirited and quite frankly, idiotic. It’s not worth my time to go through them and dissect them all. Every tweet is the same – “DEANGELO BAD. HE LIKE TRUMP. HE NO GOOD. OOGA BOOGA!”
I do want to say this – it amazes me that all these Trump & DeAngelo haters, simply have no clue about American history or how things work. Half of these morons thought an impeachment meant that Trump would be out as President.
It’s just a shame, that we have such a large portion of Americans who wish nothing but failure for our President and country. And if you’re a Trump fan, you have to love this – the Democrats have spent more time trying to tear down Trump than build a candidate of their own.
As someone who loves history, and as shown on these blogs in the past, I just want to get this out of my system and then I’ll drop this topic.
I know, I know, I know – these blogs go long enough and this is supposed to be about the Rangers. Scroll down if you don’t want a history lesson here!
If you know anything about American history and the Presidents, from the beginning of this country’s birth, Americans have always elected either our Founding Fathers or War heroes as President. (Fun fact: Washington was never elected. Crazy Fact: Over 50% of Americans think that Benjamin Franklin was a President. The educational system in this country? SAD!)
Once we got out of the Founding Father/kicking UK’s ass era, usually ex-generals or military types won elections. In a way, these ex-military men were somewhat celebrities. After all, because of his role in the Civil War, it was why Ulysses S. Grant, who was overwhelmed by the job, became a two-term President. Put it this way – Grant could’ve done something during Reconstruction to help end racial issues in America. He was unable to.
As time went on, another military man became President and that was Teddy Roosevelt. At the time, you could argue that he was the biggest “celebrity” to ever win an election. Everyone knew the face, the Rough Riders, the stories, the tales, etc.
After TR, his distant cousin, in FDR, would eventually become President. FDR was known for his “fireside chats”, where he would communicate with Americans through the media known as radio. After FDR’s death, where he led the country through the Depression & during World War II, a new invention hit America – the television.
In case you’ve been living under a rock, let me share with you a secret – Americans love celebrities. Want another secret? Americans will make celebrities out of anything. Just look at the Kardashian’s, who didn’t get famous for an Olympic Gold Medalist becoming a tranny or for Rob Kardashian defending OJ Simpson during his murder trial. No, they got famous because, just like Rob Kardashian, his daughter, in Kim Kardashian, also helped get black guys off. However, she got them off sexually, trading a courtroom for a bedroom.
No joke – the Kardashian’s became American celebrities because Kim Kardashian had a sex tape that got leaked. That started all of their fame. If Kim Kardashian’s sex tape was never released, you wouldn’t have VH1 & E! dedicating 24 hours of programming a day to that family.
Once the advent of television became popular in America, you can look at every Presidential election and look at how television impacted that election. In every election, the candidate that looked better on TV, won the election, even if that person was not the most qualified or had the most experience.
This all started back in 1960, when Richard Nixon, the more qualified and more experienced man for the job, debated JFK in a series of debates for a world-wide TV audience. While what Nixon said made sense, JFK ultimately won the election because he came off better on TV. JFK was younger. He was more charismatic. His body language translated through the tube. JFK CONNECTED. It was a lesson Nixon wouldn’t forget.
Fast-forwarding a bit from JFK’s presidency, Ronald Reagan, WHO WAS A CELEBRITY, easily trounced Jimmy Carter in a series of television debates and won the Presidency. Later on, Bill Clinton, who before looking like a “Walking Dead” zombie after living with Hillary for so long, was a smooth and suave type of guy & easily beat George Bush Sr.
When Bill Clinton’s time was up, it seemed that his VP, in Al Gore would be a slam-dunk to win the 2000 election. What happened? George Bush Jr., just like he did against the more experienced and more qualified Republican candidate in the Republican primary election, in John McCain, defeated Al Gore in the 2000 Presidential Election. Why? Because Bush Jr. was better on TV. If there is anything anyone remembers from those 2000 election debates, it was Al Gore saying the word “lock-box” 7678967896969786 times and not explaining what the hell a lock-box was. While Gore droned on and on about an imaginary “lock box”, Bush Jr. won Americans over with his simple man “aw shucks” personality.
In this new millennium and century, we saw Bush win two elections, because he was better on TV. Following up on his heels, was Barack Obama, who had no experience and was way under qualified than John McCain. However, in debates that felt reminiscent to the debates of JFK vs Nixon, Obama trounced McCain in those 2008 television debates. In fact, Obama may have outdone JFK, as in my opinion, he was the coolest cat to ever be featured during a Presidential debate. Obama would then soundly embarrass Mitt Romney in the 2012 debates that aired on television too.
What happened next and after Obama? Donald Trump, WHO NEVER HELD ONE POLITICAL OFFICE, EVER, defeated the much more qualified and experienced Hillary Clinton. Why? Because he was better on television. It also didn’t help that Hillary had the stink of corrupt Washington all over her, but in the end, for middle America & for voters on the fence, they went with the candidate that was better on TV. And you can’t say that America wasn’t ready for a woman president either. After all, an African-American was President for eight years. Who would’ve thought that would’ve ever happened, knowing this country’s history?
So where am I getting at after this lengthy monologue? All over social media, including Ranger fan and Ranger based accounts, I see people tearing down Trump left and right. What these idiots don’t realize, is that the Democrats have not built up one candidate, that can successfully go against Trump on television. You look at all these Democratic candidates – not one will defeat Trump on TV. Instead of tearing down Trump, the Democrats need to find their “celebrity” candidate for President. The only people that would beat Trump on TV right now, that have left-leaning thinking, would be people like Mark Cuban or “The Rock”. Oh, and if Obama was able to run for a third term, I think he would beat Trump too.
Bottom line – tearing down Trump won’t win an election. A charismatic candidate would defeat Trump.
Ranger fans can rip Tony DeAngelo and Trump all they want, but come November 2020, if it’s Trump vs Warren/Biden/Clinton/or another tired candidate, Trump will win in a landslide, and all the left-leaning, TDA-hating Ranger fans can do, is cry about DeAngelo’s tweets! Long Live Tony DeAngelo!
3000 words in. Maybe I should talk about this game. In fact, I think I did that above American History segment to avoid talking about this game. Ugh.
Let’s go to the gambling segment of this blog. Here’s what I said before the game:
Season over/under record: 17-16
With a -6.5 line, I’m going to play the trends & go UNDER w/Georgiev. The King of Kings handled Toronto well last season, TWICE, but this TOR team comes in hot, scoring 4+ goals several times in last 5 GP.
NYR comes in w/3 days off. Can pp score? pic.twitter.com/bGr5lp3sQA
— BlueCollarBlueShirts (@NYCTheMiC) December 20, 2019
My record now goes to 17-17. I did much better last season. Of course, there were lower lines all last season too.
Oh and to answer my own question, no, the Rangers poo-poo power-play can not score.
Line-wise, the biggest news was that Kakko was back with the third line. I’ve seen a ton of takes about him lately. Some people want him in Hartford. Some think DQ is an idiot for not giving him first line minutes all the time. It truly is amazing, that no matter what the topic, you have heated arguments from either extreme end of the fan-base and media.
As I said last blog, I don’t really care about the lines that much – I would just like to see DQ stick with something for a while, in an effort to build chemistry.
Moving along. Let’s go to the official box score, courtesy of ESPN.com:
As usual, let me start off by talking about the M$G Network guys first. As I’ve been saying for a while, I thought Micheletti was good again tonight. When he can turn off the Lundqvist love, he’s not bad. It allows him to focus on the other stuff that’s going on.
Steve Statiquette, or Vally as you may know him as, was once again the drizzling shits. During three different segments, the pregame, the intermission and the post-game, he mentioned how he used to carry Lundqvist’s bags. Okay, he didn’t say that sentence, but he talked about playing with Lundqvist during these three segments. As that had anything to do with tonight’s game.
Before the game, and I can’t believe this turd got this right, Vally said that he expected Georgiev to give up 5 goals tonight. Vally nailed this. Unbelievable. That said, while he was right, when was the last time Vally ever said that he expected Lundqvist to give up 5 goals? His anti-Georgiev rhetoric continues.
And for the record, I’ve mentioned on past blogs how Vally openly campaigns for the Rangers to trade Georgiev during Ranger post-games. Vally even does this on social media, where he usually puts out a potential trade of Georgiev to these very Maple Leafs of Toronto. I didn’t watch tonight’s post game, because once Vally started talking about his irrelevant career again & how he once played with Henrik Lundqvist, I turned the TV off. In other words, I don’t know if Vally was still pushing his Georgiev to Toronto narrative tonight.
And oh, if Vally ever runs for President (he can’t, he’s Canadian) based on his TV performances, he would get housed by anyone running against him!
Of note, the biggest thing on the pregame broadcast was a segment on CZAR IGOR!
Before this game started, John Giannone introduced a segment on CZAR IGOR and how well Igor has been in Hartford. You all know my opinions on this already. Bring him up and send Hank to the press box. I want Georgiev and Igor to battle for the number 1 spot & ride the highs & lows with this team. Just check any blog I’ve done this year for more on this!
I do want to say this. The only thing that concerns me, especially when I see these idiots having Georgiev out the door already, is that when in the KHL and playing for SKA, ex-Ranger flame-out, in Magnus Hellberg, was taking playing time and started playoff games instead of Igor Shestyorkin.
Listen, I’m a CZAR IGOR guy. That’s why I shared the picture above. That said, while I do think Igor will play well once given a chance, you have to look at all the facts. Hellberg couldn’t cut it in the NHL, yet here he was, usurping Shestyorkin as the number 1 goalie for SKA. Again, I’m rah-rah about Igor, but to jettison Georgiev out of here, it’s a bad move.
Again, you know my opinions here. Lundqvist is terrible, not the future, overpaid, blah blah blah. However, say the Rangers did move Georgiev. What if Igor doesn’t translate to the NHL? The Rangers would be giving away another good goalie and could lack depth at the position. That’s all.
Of course, after a bad Georgiev game, my social media mentions goes nuts. I’ll say what I always say here – I have no problem with Georgiev taking his lumps with this team. He’s $8M cheaper and 15 years younger than Lundqvist. And really, if Lundqvist starts tonight, do the Rangers win this game? I don’t think so. I think they would’ve folded in the first period if he was in net.
If there is anything I want to convey here, it is that I don’t want to see Georgiev be the sacrificial lamb for Igor. It should be Hank. It’s supposed to be a youth movement and rebuild.
The opening of this game started promising enough, with Jesper Fast drawing Morgan Reilly for tripping, at the 46 second mark. Right off puck drop here, we would see how David Quinn and his power-play would do.
What happened? The Rangers power-play is pure horseshoes. They come close. However, in hockey, unlike horseshoes, coming close doesn’t get you any points. The worst thing here? Toronto got the best shot of the Rangers PP, with Georgiev having to stop Hyman on a short-handed breakaway.
Instead of grabbing an early 1-0 lead, the Rangers blew a chance and gave Toronto momentum. Right after this save, Chytil would get a chance, but he would turn the puck over. And really, this is what this game was. It was like watching Mark Sanchez or Tony Romo play football – a game of never-ending turnovers.
Turnovers plagued this game, right from the start. After blowing this power-play chance, Brady Skjei would turnover the puck and then would have to go one-on-one with Auston Matthews. This was like watching Mike Tyson vs Peter McNeely. After a save from Georgiev, Greg McKegg, with his teeth that look like the donkey from “Shrek”, turned the puck over. NOT GOOD!
If anything was good about the first ten minutes of this game, from a NYR perspective, it was Georgiev making big saves and Chris Kreider showing off his aggressiveness. Both of things would take a reprieve as the game continued.
After Georgiev stopped Tavares and a Toronto two vs one chance (with late help from TDA), Sam Rosen started talking about Lundqvist for the All-Star Game. Give it a rest Sam.
Right after this, the Rangers turned the puck over and Pierre “WHO?” Engvall easily beat Georgiev, all alone, from two feet away. Filip Chytil did that matador defense, said “eff it” and just watched. Brutal. 1-0 bad guys, with just a little over ten minutes played.
As the period progressed, Mika Zibanejad had a chance to tie it, but rung a puck off the post on a good one-timer attempt. Then, with the puck now in the Rangers end, Georgiev tried to clear the puck, but Zibanejad inadvertently tipped the puck. Kasperi Kapanen easily got the puck and sauced it over to William Nylander, who easily beat Georgiev. 2-0 bad guys, at the 11:52 mark. This game was looking like a blood bath.
On this goal, it just seemed like some bad communication and an accident. Georgiev made the right play and if the puck doesn’t hit Zibanejad’s stick, this isn’t a goal. Just one of those things.
With this game looking like hot crap on a summer day, Brady Skjei made it a one goal game:
Down 2? No issue here pic.twitter.com/0mNC5Kl6wk
— Rangers on MSG (@RangersMSGN) December 21, 2019
Of note, the above clip shows Ryan Strome tying the game too. What a spoiler!
On the Skjei goal, he finds himself all alone in front of Andersen. Instead of shooting it, he makes a dumbass move. Skjei flubs up and errs, yet the puck, because there was little contact, squeaked through Andersen’s legs. Hey, a broken clock is right twice a day! 2-1, BAD GUYS.
After Skjei’s puck-luck goal, the Rangers would have two chances to tie it. Lindgren hit the post. Then Kakko would have a chance for an easy goal, but Andersen made a play to prevent Kakko from swooping around him.
With the two minute warning approaching, Panarin would find Strome, all alone, and Strome would finish. 2-2 game. 2 goal deficit erased. Once again, the Rangers kept on fighting for Georgiev.
In a play that will be forgotten because of the end result, and with the period approaching triple zeroes, Marc Staal sonned Auston Matthews and forced a turnover. Great D.
At the end of one period, we remained tied at 2-2.
After blocking a shot late into the first period, Kakko stayed on the bench and looked like he was going to cry like Jesse Spano after taking too many caffeine pills. When we returned for the second period, it was like Kakko never left the bench, as he was still there crying. I’m sure blocking shots hurt, and I know they do, but this was just bad optics and not a good visual. You have the crown jewel of the Rangers organization just sitting there crying, like the way a kid would cry if someone knocked an ice cream cone out of his hands.
To start the second period, Sam “The Jinx” Rosen talked about how great Toronto is in the second period of games this year. In fact, Toronto has the best second period goal differential in the NHL today. As he said that, Georgiev stopped Marner on a breakaway.
90 seconds into the period, Zibanejad would be called for interference. This was pure bullshit. Zibanejad was skating to the puck and made accidental contact with a Leaf. Horrendous call. And now knowing what we know, the Rangers should just throw elbows to the head if they are gonna get a two minute minor. This was horrible.
20 seconds after this, Brendan Smith was called for slashing. This gave Toronto 1:40 of a 5 vs 3 power-play.
For the second game in a row, Brady Skjei once again scored on Georgiev. Mitch Marner went to pass the puck to a wide open John Tavares for a tap-in goal from the door-step, but instead, the puck was kicked in by Skjei. That’s two games in a row now. Just want to make that clear. 3-2, bad guys.
And hey, gotta give credit to Toronto here. They didn’t squander this 5 vs 3 PP opportunity. That said, this power-play should’ve never happened, as Zibanejad was falsely penalized.
The Rangers would then go on to kill the Smith penalty, which was the right call.
At the 5:27 mark of the period, Tony DeAngelo and Marc Staal played with the puck, the puck went off Andersen and Pavel “CAPTAIN HAPPY” Buchnevich, got a puck luck rebound and buried the puck. 3-3 game. Once again, the Rangers fought back and tied the game. Unfortunately, the Rangers wouldn’t score for the next 35 minutes. This was the last Rangers goal of the game.
At the 5:50 mark of the second period, Barrie tossed the puck into the Chase Bridges. Delay of game here and the Rangers would go on their second PP attack of the game. Panarin was doing anything he could to tie the game, but the Leafs were all over him and blocking all his shot attempts. The Rangers power-play ultimately failed here. 0-2.
As I have been saying during these last few blogs, and as I said at the time on social media, once again, this failed Rangers power-play is the difference between winning and losing. A PPG to start the game and/or here, swings this game in the Rangers favor.
Toronto would dominate the puck again from here, with Georgiev making a flurry of saves. The M$G crowd response? Quiet as a mouse fart in church.
Captain Happy would get a chance to put the Rangers ahead, but while all alone in front of Andersen, Buchnevich turned over the puck by passing to the blue line. Horrendous.
With 1:43 remaining in the second period, Adam Fox was called for “roughing”. In reality, he made a hockey play and finished his man. Was it a little aggressive? Sure. However, it’s a play you would never see called for a penalty in the playoffs, unless Jean Hebert was out there. Of note, I was told by Howie Wirth, that due to all the referee injuries in the league, the ref who called this penalty, was doing his second ever NHL game tonight. Rookie call. Rookie mistake. Fortunately, it didn’t hurt the Rangers.
Georgiev would make one last big save to close the period. 3-3 after two. Anyone’s game, but once again, 0-2 on the PP hurt the Rangers. Oh, and of note, at the end of two periods, Toronto was out-shooting the Rangers 2:1, by a total of 24-12.
After killing off the final seconds of Fox’s penalty, the Rangers would get a chance to go-ahead, early into this period. Panarin made a great play, was tripped, but no call. He still got a shot off on goal anyway.
Immediately after, Nylander got the puck, streaked on by and beat Georgiev, two minutes and ten seconds into the period. 4-3, bad guys. Georgiev should’ve had this one.
After this Nylander goal, three Rangers would be near Georgiev, as the Rangers plotted their attack. Instead of moving the puck forward, Mitch Marner, the lone Maple Leaf still back there and trying to forecheck, forced a turnover on Ryan Strome. Marner then beat Georgiev, 37 seconds after Nylander’s goal. 5-3, bad guys. Georgiev probably could’ve had this one too, but the issue here was Strome’s horrific turnover. Of course, this then led the commentators to go down their “north south” vs “east west” talk.
Bottom line is this – this turnover should’ve never happened, no matter what type of compass you’re holding.
After this horrendous turnover and goal allowed, David Quinn took a timeout and went into Father Fink mode:
RALLY THE TROOPS pic.twitter.com/gHME96nrMh
— Rangers on MSG (@RangersMSGN) December 21, 2019
With a little over 17 minutes remaining, you would think that maybe this angry pep talk would instill life into the Rangers. If you thought that, like I did, you would be wrong. Instead, for the next 17 minutes, the Rangers wilted like a dead flower.
From here on in, this game was a complete snoozefest. The Rangers hibernated. And it was so odd, because the Rangers were rallying back all game and they usually come up for Georgiev. It just didn’t happen in this period.
The Rangers best chance in the period came with five minutes played, when Dmytro Timasho hooked Panarin to prevent an easy tap-in goal. This was a good penalty to take for two reasons. One, it prevented a goal. Two, the Rangers power-play sucks.
On this power-play, the Rangers did absolutely nothing. 0-3. We then went to a commercial, where we were “treated” to a segment with Vally. The stupid jackass was laughing and talking about his crappy career again.
This third period was a waste. Toronto just kept peppering Georgiev, which gave Georgiev his 34 saves on the night.
Talking about the rest of this period is a waste of my time. It was a bore.
Ilya Mikheyev would score with under four minutes left in regulation. 6-3, bad guys. Georgiev was pissed about this one. I think he was mad at himself, but the Rangers were just letting Toronto go bonkers in this period.
The game would then mercifully end, with the 6-3 score being your final. Brutal loss. If this game was a litmus test and if this game was any indicator of David Quinn’s message landing, everything failed – BIG TIME.
When it comes to Georgiev, this wasn’t a terrible game, but it wasn’t good either. He should’ve had the last three goals, but at the same time, the Rangers played like crap too. As I joked about afterwards, maybe Georgiev is sick of all the talk about him going to Toronto, so he stunk up the joint to prevent a trade there! What a smart kid!
This team is becoming tough to figure out. Sometimes they play well and then, when you expect them to, they come out and have a game like this. And there’s no excuses. They had three days to prepare.
Often, you will hear people say goaltending isn’t an issue on this team, which once again, means that Lundqvist has no bearing on this team. After all, despite these six goals allowed, Georgiev still has better numbers than Lundqvist and for $8M less. Just imagine what you could get for $8M? How about a line of Hall/Zibanejad/Panarin for next season?
Up next for the Rangers, FAMILY DAY at M$G, where a family of four can pony up $2000 to see the Rangers host a terrible Ducks team.
I assume Lundqvist gets this start, since the Ducks are bad and Georgiev didn’t do much to earn a start. If it were up to me, I’d just call up Igor for this game. The Ducks stink, so this would be a perfect time to debut Shestyorkin.
This Rangers season isn’t over yet, but we’re almost half-way done with the season. If the Rangers look like they are out of it by MLK Day, expect tons of Kreider talk, especially with Hall now being moved.
If there is one thing that is concerning about this season, the Rangers haven’t been able to rip off a point streak, much less than a win streak, of 6, 7 or 8 games in a row, which many good teams do. They’ve had a point streak of 5 games, but that said – the Rangers let many games & points slip through their hands.
Bearing anything crazy tomorrow, I’ll be back Sunday after the game. That blog may be late, as I’ll be watching the football too.
As always, thanks for reading and…
“LET’S GO RANGERS!”
@NYCTHEMIC on tweeter
P.S.: If you’re one of those people who say “SEAN ISN’T COMMENTING ON GEORGIEV” on a random Facebook or Twitter thread, I just did another manifesto of a blog. I can’t reply to everything I’m tagged in. Win or lose, bad or good, I do a blog after nearly every game, talking EVERYTHING!