Greetings and salutations everyone and welcome to another blog here on BlueCollarBlueShirts.com. Remember that time when the Original Six Rangers defeated the expansion California Seals by a final score of 12-1? (And if anyone has complete footage from that date of November 21st, 1971 – please contact me!)
Going into the Rangers Sunday matinee affair with the Seattle Kraken, I had a few thoughts. I’d later repeat these thoughts throughout the entire game. And heck, I’m repeating these thoughts one last time here:
The NHL schedule makers did the Rangers no favors. After all, this game marked the Rangers third game in a time-span of just three-and-a-half days.
In addition, ever since Adam Fox found himself on the injured-reserve list, Gallant’s Gang hadn’t had one day of practice in order to adjust. Due to the schedule, the Rangers have been forced to adjust without their Norris Trophy winner while on-the-fly. And while the club currently has many players that are “learning on the job” – it’s even tougher to do so when you’re without your best skater.
Without question, not having Adam Fox in the line-up, the team’s highest scorer, is a major blow.
While you can most certainly argue that Kaapo Kakko and Filip Chytil haven’t been that hot this season either – the fact of the matter is that “The Turk” is without two of his regular forwards too.
(And while I’m just a fan – I do wonder why Johnny “HOCKEY” Brodzinksi gets the nod over Morgan Barron with Chytil out.)
Due to three of his starters currently dressed in suits, rather than in their familiar blue jerseys, Gallant has had to do a lot of tinkering. With a draining schedule, it just makes things harder. (And so much for Player Safety too – as it made absolutely no sense to schedule these last three games like this.)
In the Rangers third game played in less than a time-span of ninety hours, the team came out sleepwalking on Sunday. And let’s face it – these matinee games, despite earlier success this season, are usually a snoozer to begin with.
However, while perhaps I’m making excuses here (where keep in mind, the Rangers WON this game), Gallant, in his post-game press conference, did not. More on that at the end of tonight’s manifesto; because aside from CZAR IGOR – Gallant’s rip job is really the lede story in all of Rangerstown, USA right now.
If you recall, I attended the Rangers first ever game in Seattle, back on Halloween of 2021. As I said following that game (a late 3-1 victory), the expansion Kraken gave the Rangers fits.
Now in New York, where on Sunday, the Kraken made their M$G debut a day shy of three months after the first meeting between these two teams; once again, the NHL’s 32nd team gave the Original Six Rangers headaches.
Crazy stat and a not-so-fun fact? The Seattle Kraken had 42 shots on goal in this game. As a result, the team of only 44 games set a franchise record for their most amount of shots on goal in one game. Only the Rangers, only the Rangers!
Perhaps even crazier, is that the Kraken, and their Pacific Division rival/cellar roommate, the Arizona Coyotes; both of these teams have played the Rangers tough this year. While the Rangers are 4-0 in these four games with these NHL basement stalwarts; none of these victories came easy – or as easy as they should have.
While I’ll get more into the worst analyst in all of hockey today in just a bit; I should mention that Steve Valiquette, M$GN’s resident chart-humper, mentioned on-air today that he was hung-over a bit, even going as far as to groan at the staged “Bud Light Bar.”
I received some comments from some of you guys & gals, both during and following the game, where collectively, you all alluded to the idea that maybe the Rangers were out drinking on Saturday night too. In response – I highly doubt it.
Quite frankly, I doubt these 2021-22 Rangers were really partying that much on Friday night either, with Henrik Lundqvist, and the alumni from #30’s era, who showed up for his night.
Furthermore, I doubt Lundqvist, a family man with young kids, is that much of a party type either. I just can’t imagine him getting sloppy drunk, as if he were Brian Leetch. (I kid, I kid!)
And for Valiquette to be out partying, as if it was his night – well no shocker there. The man will never miss an opportunity to horn-in on someone else’s accomplishments.
In addition, I wouldn’t be surprised to hear, that long after Lundqvist, Girardi, Callahan and the others all went home; that Vally was still hamming it up at some watering hole, while chewing the ear off of some bartender, when talking about one of his legendary and iconic games from his epic 46 games played NHL career.
As far as the 2021-22 Rangers go, I don’t think they were hung-over at all. I just think the schedule got to them today. It’s happened before, it happened today, and it will happen again – which is why hockey is a nighttime sport, and not a daytime sport like football or baseball. (And that’s my story and I’m sticking to it!)
Due to the back-to-back set from Thursday and Friday, the Rangers had off on Saturday. Even if Gallant and the team had desired to practice yesterday, I doubt they could’ve practiced on Saturday anyway, due to the snowstorm – a snowstorm that forced a postponement between the Kraken and Islanders. (The two teams, scheduled to play on Saturday afternoon, will now play on Wednesday night.)
Gallant briefly met with the media at 11AM on Sunday morning, where he stated that after today, he’ll never tell the media who his starting goaltender will be ever again.
Gallant has flip-flopped on this all-season, where sometimes he’s willing to divulge this information, and other times, he’s not so accommodating. And if you look at when Gallant does inform the media about who his starting goaltender will be, it’s usually during a winning streak.
I’ll spare you from another one of my gambling rants here, but yep – it’s a disservice, illogical and flat-out idiotic, that the NHL, the Rangers and every other team in this league, begs their fans 7896786879687678 times a broadcast to gamble on games – yet won’t give out pertinent information to their marks, such as the starting goaltender and the line-up. As you may expect, this information is kind of important when placing a wager.
Similar to the NFL, which exploded to meteoric levels because of gambling – I expect that one day in the near future, NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman will force teams to announce their line-ups and starting goaltenders with an ample amount of notice.
The NHL doesn’t want to cost their new bed-mates any money, and by waiting until the last second to announce roster information, that’s what these teams/coaches are doing.
As far as anything else, Gallant confirmed that like Adam Fox, Kaapo Kakko is done until after the All-Star break. However, Gallant said there was a chance that Filip Chytil could return on Tuesday. Don’t hold your breath.
(Also of note: following the game, it was confirmed by the NHL that Adam Fox won’t be playing in the All Star Game. As a result, only Chris Kreider, of the three Rangers who were named as All-Stars, will be appearing in Vegas next weekend.)
Here’s what “The Turk” went with for this matinee affair:
FIRST LINE: Kreider/Mika/Lafreniere
SECOND LINE: Panarin/Strome/Goodrow
THIRD LINE: Hunt/Rooney/Reaves
FOURTH LINE: McKegg/Brodzinski/Gauthier
Defensively, we had this:
FIRST D-PAIR: Lindgren/Schneider
SECOND D-PAIR: Miller/Trouba
THIRD D-PAIR: Hajek/Jones
And in net, CZAR IGOR.
BOX SCORE time.
The following information and graphics come from the new world-wide leader in NHL coverage, ESPN.com:
The M$GN pregame show from Sunday afternoon wasn’t as horrible as it usually is.
Part of the reason for this opinion, was because we got a lot of Dave Maloney during these thirty minutes. We also got a five-minute segment, which recapped the top ten Ranger plays from January, which in turn, meant less face time for lightweight Valiquette – the “in-his-own-mind” Patrick Roy of his generation, and who complained several times about whatever he was drinking from the night before.
To show you how silly and terrible this broadcast is (and for you doubters out there, just watch any other broadcast in the league, sans the Islanders. It truly is night-and-day); after listening to Giannone and the seven foot jackass, we then went to Michelle Gingras, who was in-between the benches at the time.
Gingras – “we don’t know what the line-up is.”
Of course, as she was saying that, the team were completing line rushes right in front of her. No matter, as following this segment, we had JB Smoove, in one of his 8976786786789678968969 never-ending commercials, telling us how this is “our Garden” and how we should bet everything we own on this game. “Sell grandma’s jewelry to a pawnshop located in ‘Krakville’ if you have to, HEH!”
While Gingras was only doing her job, we then went back to Steve Vagistat, who had the AUDACITY to criticize and critique CZAR IGOR. While he later admitted to being hungover on this broadcast; I didn’t realize that he now smokes meth too. If he’s not smoking meth, I’d like an explanation on why the worst back-up goalie of the Lundqvist era is now criticizing #30’s successor.
For this pigeon to be saying anything negative at all about #31 in blue (and is it a great look for the M$GN, when their “number one” analyst admits to being half-impaired on air?) – well it should earn him a nice suspension, or even better – permanent removal.
Then again, if M$GN doesn’t care about pushing gambling on children – do you think they care if Vally is hungover? More likelier than a timeout for Vally? John Giannone touting the wonders of Marlboro Red 100s.
I can hear it now, “Ranger fans, convert your Marlboro Miles for Caeser Reward Points today!”
Despite being hungover, where his voice was severely hoarse whenever he spoke; Vagistat still was able to weasel in a plug for his fake news chart company. At least he’s consistent.
Finally, Dave Maloney came on and saved this broadcast. Of course, he also used a bunch of my previous talking points in regards to Chris Kreider, which is why it was so great! (I kid, I kid!)
It’s funny, prior to this game, as in just hours before puck drop; I was talking with Stan Fischler. “The Maven” brought up Chris Kreider, and asked me, “what has turned the kid into the latter day version of Rocket Richard?”
My response? The following:
I think it’s a combination of different things:—- Gallant – especially putting CK20 on the PK, like AV once did with Nash. Keeps Kreider more involved and now as a PKer, it helps what he does on the PP.—- Adam Fox finding him for deflections/tips (at least half of CK20’s goals are a result of a Fox primary assist.)—- Adopting a Phil Esposito style of game, as he camps in the paint and waits for tips, deflections and rebounds. (CK20’s screen game has been incredible too, where his screens are more valuable than some assists.)—- Elder statesman/team leader—- No drama – last season was completely unprecedented, and not just because of the pandemic either.
—- Rise of Mika & Panarin, who are usually the focus of the other team’s D.
During his segment, Maloney brought up Kreider’s PK work, even mentioning that Kreider himself has said that it has positively impacted his game.
After talking Kreider, Maloney spoke about the other leader of the team, Jacob Trouba, where Maloney said #8 has been the most consistent Ranger (sans Fox and Kreider) of the season. Maloney showered heavy praise on the Rangers hitting, mentioning how Trouba’s physicality has swung games.
Back from a break, Bill Pidto gave us the “Top Ten Plays” of January, where the first “play” wasn’t a play. It was the Lundqvist night ceremony. Chris Kreider’s hat trick finished second.
Following the highlights, Vally said, “blowing two goal leads is a big story.”
Rather than expanding on that thought, a legit one at that, we went straight to JB Smoove begging us for more of our money. God damn it – it’s your Garden after all, and you better sell your mother if you have to, in order to bet on these games!
Sam and Joe, in their limited pregame segment, did a great job in my opinion. The duo praised Barclay Goodrow and also did a fine job of assessing the Kraken. Of course, the two would talk about the Kraken, their draft, their future roster moves, what happens next with Mark Giordano, GM Ron Francis, and anything else Kraken-related for the remainder of the game.
Game review time.
The top stories from this game, that weren’t related to CZAR IGOR and Gerard Gallant, are the shots on goal and shot attempts statistics. The Kraken absolutely destroyed the Rangers in both of these statistics on Sunday.
Throughout the entire game, the Kraken pretty much had twice as many shots on goal as the Rangers. While the Kraken ultimately won the SOG statistic 42-24 (six shots shy of doubling-up the home team), even those numbers don’t tell the true story. No joke, it felt that for every shot on goal the Rangers had, the Kraken had 6 or 7.
In addition, at one point during the second period, the shot attempts were 50-25, and in favor of Frasier Crane’s favorite team.
In my opinion (and this isn’t a knock on Alexandar Georgiev), if CZAR IGOR wasn’t in net, just like the shots on goal and shot attempt stats – I think Seattle would’ve won the only stat that matters – the final score.
“Old friend” Colin Blackwell started the game for Seattle. After going with his fourth line to open up Friday’s game, Gallant used the second line, the Strome line, to begin this game.
It wasn’t all slow and bad.
At the start of the game, Lafreniere got the puck up ice to Kreider, where CK20 then made a nice touch pass to Mika. Unfortunately, Zibanejad then sent the puck wide.
2:30 into the game, Trouba manned the blue line near the boards by the bench, and wouldn’t allow Donato to enter the Rangers zone, thus preventing a “Krak Attack.”
Five minutes into the game, neither team had a SOG. That would soon change following a blocked shot out of Trouba, which took place during a Kraken 3 x 2 odd-man rush.
After future Vezina candidate CZAR IGOR made two saves; last year’s Vezina candidate, the supposed “franchise goalie” of the Kraken, Philipp Grubauer, made his first save of the game with 13:31 remaining in the first. The former Avalanche netminder denied Lindgren, after double-nickel received a pass in the crease from “The Breadman.” Good save.
And yep, you guessed it – despite Grubauer having a tough season, he had one of his best games of the 2021-22 campaign inside of M$G. That’s the way it always works, don’t you know?
Ten minutes in, Igor kept flashing the cow, where he made clean saves and in rapid succession. Of course, this was the same Igor that Steve Vagistat was just critiquing minutes earlier. Also around this time, the first line had one of their better shifts of the game, which was also led by Jacob Trouba.
With 9:03 to go, Sam and Joe got confused over a penalty – aka the norm. The end result was Alex Wennberg going to the box, after interfering with Alexis Lafreniere – admittedly a soft call.
And while on the officials, they were ABSOLUTELY HORRIFIC today. And I’m not talking about penalties assessed either. One of the linesmen couldn’t drop a puck to save his life. I’m not even exaggerating and doing another one of my 786786786789687968796786876876968 gimmicks right now.
No joke, one of the linesmen, no less than eight different times, and maybe as many as a dozen times; stopped, stalled, reset, and just kept delaying the game, where he teased dropping the puck, and for whatever reason, failed to do so. You could see that all of the players and coaches were frustrated about this. Ditto Sam, Joe and the fans – with the latter booing the zebras every time this happened.
On the Rangers power-play, their first of the game; following a denied Mika one-timer and a Panarin shot that went wide, this happened:
Mika get’s his 17th on the PP! pic.twitter.com/msD7yPiXpA
— Rangers on MSG (@RangersMSGN) January 30, 2022
1-0, GOOD GUYS, following another Mika power-play goal from Ovi’s office, and with 8:14 to go.
On this goal, Trouba found Panarin, and #10 easily fed Zibanejad for this successful one-timer. A PPG is always huge, but we didn’t realize how big this goal was going to be for the remainder of the period, much less the game itself.
Put it this way – this goal was scored with 8:14 to go, and was the Rangers fifth shot on goal of the contest. The Rangers would finish the period with six shots on goal in all.
Following Mika’s goal, Julien Gauther went to the net, but you know the rest. I believe his shooting percentage is now at 5%.
With 6:45 to go, CZAR IGOR made his ninth save of the game, this time on ex-teammate Colin Blackwell. Then, with 5:52 to go, Libor Hajek was boxed for hooking Donskoi.
The Rangers got some luck on this Fox-less penalty kill, as the Kraken sent a bunch of shots wide. In addition, Kreider made a big clear too.
Following the successful kill, with 2:45 to go, a “Krakhead” hit the post. Whew. Also around this time, Kuhlman absolutely crushed Hajek in the neutral zone. However, Hajek would be okay. Instead, Kuhlman went to the locker room and never returned.
With 49.2 seconds to go in the first frame, CZAR IGOR came up big again, where he made his fourteenth stop of the period.
With just twenty seconds remaining, Grubauer (remember him?) stopped Braden Schneider. This was the Rangers first SOG in eight minutes and an easy save for P.G.
After a period where CZAR IGOR and Trouba stood out the most (Mika too, due to the PPG), the Rangers were up 1-0. This was another game where my adage of “SPECIAL TEAMS SWING GAMES” rang true too.
As has been the case as of late, the second period was the Rangers worst.
Three minutes in, the Rangers got their first shot of the period, where Grubauer stopped Trouba on a shot from downtown.
On the next shift following Grubauer’s save, the top line came on, and there was Mika Zibanejad to set up the Rangers second goal of the contest:
The point drought is over for Alexis Lafrenière!
— Rangers Videos (@SNYRangers) January 30, 2022
2-0, GOOD GUYS, just 4:23 into the second period, as Zibanejad blasted a puck off of the iron, and akin to his fellow winger Chris Kreider, Alexis Lafreniere was in the paint for the easy rebound – a goal that the first overall pick put into Grubauer’s vacated net.
This was Lafreniere’s first point in nine games. It was also another goal that was celebrated with as much jubilation as a New Year’s Eve reveler. I hope that shit stops soon – which means that I hope these Lafreniere goals are sighted frequently and regularly – rather than appearing as infrequently as a lunar eclipse. (Same goes for Kakko too.)
(And as far as the criticism of “LAFRENIERE ONLY SCORES EMPTY NET GOALS FROM A FOOT AWAY!!!!” goes? Good. I don’t care how he scores. I hope he scores 50 of these goals a season! It’s also funny how the same people saying that are the same ones going nuts about Kreider too!)
Zac Jones, who originally got the puck to Mika, also picked up a secondary assist here too. This was ZJ’s first point of the season.
And oh, need I mention that the Rangers had a two-goal lead here, their third consecutive game with a two-goal lead? And as you know by now, the Rangers would blow this two-goal lead too. Thankfully, on Sunday, they “reversed the curse,” and came back to win.
From this point on, it was pretty much all Seattle – as the Kraken rained down shots, as if these shots on goal were the raindrops that overwhelm their city.
With 12:42 to go, Jared McCann, the best player of team 32, brought the Krak addicts within one. 2-1, good guys.
On this goal, Sam Rosen blew his 789678689678968967896th goal call of the season.
Whenever watching a game, NOTHING, and I mean NOTHING, is more frustrating and aggravating, whenever Rosen cheerily belts out, “WHAT A SAVE BY IGOR SHESTYORKIN! OH BABY JOE, WHAT A HUGE SAVE,” where then five seconds later, Rosen adds, “OH WAIT JOE, THAT PUCK WENT IN! MY APOLOGIES JOE!”
I’ll miss Sam when he retires. He’s a legend. He truly is. However, he really has become a parody of himself, because every fan is at the point where you just expect him to make ten-to-hundred mistakes a game. Very rarely, does he get every goal call right in a game anymore.
Of course, Rosen will always get a pass from me, which is why I do laugh at all of these mistakes, rather than giving Rosen the “Vally Treatment!”
On this McCann tally, the center got to Igor, fired a shot, #31 in blue got a piece of it, but not all of it – as the puck then trickled in. Tough one, but at the same time, the Kraken were in shooting gallery mode and with the Rangers skaters providing little-to-nothing resistance.
With ten minutes to go, the SOG were 21-9, Kraken.
With 7:16 to go, Trouba was boxed after interfering with Sheahan. This was another soft call from the inept humans posing as professional officials.
Igor was the best PKer on this penalty kill, as the Rangers PK once again proved to be successful.
With Jones and Hajek being caught out on the ice for nearly two minutes, the Kraken continued to attack, but fortunately for the Rangers; all of Seattle’s shots went wide during this.
Following a TV timeout, John Giannone said, “Gallant has displayed anguished frustration.” He’d verbalize that after the game.
For your consideration, with under a minute to go in this second stanza, the Rangers only had three shots from their forwards – two from Mika, and one from Lafreniere, which was the easy rebound goal into an empty net.
At the end of the period, the Rangers were still up 2-1, in a game that was being dominated by CZAR IGOR. A lesser goalie might’ve found himself on the bench with a cap on his head and a towel around his neck.
For a team full of adages and cliches this season, here’s another – “save the best for last.”
Of course, the Rangers “best” of this game isn’t saying much either, but for as haphazard as they looked in this game – I still remind you of the schedule and no Adam Fox.
While the Kraken did win the SOG stat in this final frame by a tally of 17-12; the twelve Rangers SOG from this period matched the total number of SOG that they had in the first forty minutes. Need I remind you that I’m a glass half-full person with this team?
The Rangers had two quick chances to regain the insurance goal at the onset of this period.
On the first chance, Panarin found Hunt wide-open for an easy goal, but #29 missed the net. However, the left winger did draw Appleton for a trip at the 36 second mark.
The Rangers pretty much did everything but score here, where Strome had the best chance – a save for Grubauer.
Following “Krak Kills,” with 16:40 to go, following another save for Igor – every member of the Kraken had a SOG in the game.
With 15:32 to go, Reaves was boxed for a high-stick. On replay, it was blatantly apparent that his stick had hit the chest of Larsson, and not his head. Again, the officials, much like Valiquette, looked hungover and shoddy today.
Braden Schneider (career-high 21:52 TOI), was the star of this PK. I know I’ve said this before, but it remains true, and despite Miller’s goal from today – if he was a LD, he would be full-time with Trouba on the second pair.
With 11:09 to go, Grubauer made his second save of the period, this time on McKegg. On the Krak’s next possession, Igor made two quick saves, including one without his stick. This led to “IGOR, IGOR, IGOR!” chants.
Now under ten minutes, the SOG were 33-16, Kraken.
With 7:42 to go, Dunn hooked Panarin. At the very least, in a one goal game, this would burn two minutes. However, just three seconds into the Rangers power-play, Kreider took an ill-advised penalty when he blatantly held Lauzon. This then gave us 1:57’s worth of foreplay, followed by a three second Kraken power-play – or a three second PK for the Rangers, who padded their already strong PK numbers with this one.
The biggest play during the 4×4 was when Grubauer stoned Miller on a breakaway. That save would keep the Kraken’s chances of winning this game alive.
Just around the FOXWOODS FINAL FIVE mark, Grubauer made a FABULOUS save on Panarin, where again, the Kraken goalie was like a Bee-Gee, and in turn, Seattle were “stayin’ alive, stayin’ alive.”
With 3:14 to go, and after many soft calls all game; the officials gave the Rangers a make-up non-call, where they ignored a Kreider trip. However, nine seconds later, the officials wouldn’t ignore Mika’s trip on McCann.
Now with 3:05 left, the Rangers would pretty much play man-down for the rest of the game – or so we thought.
Barclay Goodrow was Gallant’s chosen one here, as the jack-of-all-trades forward won every faceoff during all of these d-zone draws. Goodrow also set up two scoring chances for the PK here, but the Rangers couldn’t find the insurance goal.
With 1:28 to go, and 24 seconds left on the Kraken PP (and with Grubauer pulled too), Seattle took a timeout. Then, with just four seconds left on their power-play, and 1:08 on the clock, Yanni Gourde, Goodrow’s former linemate, just sniped a perfect shot from the left of CZAR IGOR. 2-2. Another Rangers two-goal lead had been pissed away.
There was nothing Igor could do here. Gourde, just as he did to the disgusting Islanders in the ’21 playoffs, found the little space that was afforded to him.
As your head fell to your knees, and as you were saying, “not this shit again;” 34 seconds later, Miller erased the tie:
K’ANDRE MILLER DIDN’T WANT OVERTIME
— Rangers Videos (@SNYRangers) January 30, 2022
3-2, GOOD GUYS and with 33.7 seconds remaining!
On this goal, Zibanejad won an o-zone draw, Miller got the puck, walked it up a bit and then fired away. Grubauer was stunned – and so was M$G, as the defenseman said “FATHER FINK OVERTIME!”
Following more issues with dropping the puck by the linesman, the Rangers held on. 3-2, GOOD GUYS, your final.
Yep, this wasn’t a great game. It was ugly, and without Igor and the special teams (and that timely Miller goal), the Rangers get blown out of the water. However, I won’t be the one to rip the team here. Instead, I’ll let Gallant do it:
In case you can’t watch that video, here’s a transcript of Gallant’s post-game presser, courtesy of Adam Rotter from https://nyrangersnews.com/2022/01/30/what-gerard-gallant-said-after-the-win-over-seattle-2/#more-189180 :
- What did you think, “I think it was awful….yea, I’m not too happy.”
- Why, “Love the win…you know why, you watch the game…”
- The lack of offense, “Competitiveness, quite a bit. Disappointing.”
- Was it mostly with their forecheck, “they play hard and send four lines at you. I’m not disrespecting their team, I’m talking about my team and we just weren’t hard enough.”
- Do you see the team slipping a little bit, “The last three games, for sure, definitely.”
- Is there an explanation, “I’m going to try and find that out because I’m not happy. Today was disappointing to watch that after two losses, I expected a lot more from my group and didn’t see much of it.”
- On Shesterkin, “excellent, gave us a chance to win and that is what he does.”
- On Zibanejad, “I’m not going to talk about individual guys…Mika’s been great, but…I’m disappointed in my team. We are better than that, we talked about it two weeks ago, about coming in here and saying ‘oh, we won a big game against a real good team, well you gotta do it every night, you don’t do it once in a while and pick your games and pick your spots.”
- Do you sense that they are burned out, “I hope not, I don’t think so….I wish someone would tell me that if that is the case, but I don’t see that.”
- Your message is that you aren’t pleased with their effort, “they know that…they should know that, if they don’t know…nine shots after two periods against a team over there that is a hard working and competitive team, but….”
After game 46 of his tenure behind the Rangers bench, and for the first time this season; the usually even-keeled Gerard Gallant tore into his team – despite the team’s current second-place standing in the toughest division in hockey, the Metropolitan division.
However, as a fan, I’m fine with the team. All I care about are wins and losses. I also know that this team will only improve after the deadline too.
And as we all know, even if I did rip the team after this game, my words wouldn’t mean anything, especially compared to the profound statements that Gallant made. Needless to say, Gallant’s opinions mean a little bit more than mine! (For as silly and as stupid as it is, other bloggers/podcasters/fans think their opinions mean more than the HC’s!)
I was fine with that Gallant said here, because as an outsider-looking-in, I think this was Gallant’s way of motivating his team and pumping them up a bit.
Consider the following:
— The Rangers have one more game before the All-Star break.
— With vacations galore coming up for these guys, it’s very easy to look past the next game.
— The Rangers just played one of the worst teams in the NHL and barely won.
— Up next, the Rangers play the best team in the league, the Florida Panthers.
— Of all of Gallant’s previous stops, the way he was fired in Florida was the worst of the pink slips that he’s received.
— Without question, while Gallant always preaches “one game at a time,” he also doesn’t want to be embarrassed on Tuesday night either.
As a fan, I’m making excuses about the schedule and the lack of Adam Fox. While Gallant might agree with my opinions privately; publicly, he can’t be crying about the schedule and losing Fox either.
By using the media as his messenger pigeons (no one takes the bait better than the younger reporters on the beat), Gallant will fire up his team, where in theory, this tactic hopefully pays off – with CZAR IGOR and the Rangers once again neutering the Cats.
All in all, while this win wasn’t a Picasso (I feel like I say that a lot); two points are two points. Had the Rangers lost this game, I could only imagine the reaction and tire fires in Rangerstown, USA.
The hardcover version of my book, available now at Amazon.com
The first plug of tonight’s blog – the mandatory plug for my new 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 2 signed copies for sale at $25 a pop (includes shipping price) through me directly. Here is all the information on that:
Here are my last few blogs, in case you missed them:
NYR/CBJ 1/27 Review: “Bruce” Jenner & His Blue Jackets Cannon-Ball the Rangers; Comeback Falls Short, Lundqvist Night Preparation, Ron Duguay’s Relationship with Sarah Palin, Fox Injury, Goodrow, Schneider > Lundkvist, M$GN & More
The New York Rangers Mid-Season Report Card! Grades and In-Depth Thoughts on Every Blueshirt; Fox, Kreider & Igor Heads of the Class, Steven McDonald & MVP Candidates, Surprising Stats, Career-Seasons Aplenty, 2021 Comparisons & More
NYR/LAK 1/24 Review: All They Do is Win! First Place Rangers Find a New Way To Victory; Fox & Igor Shootout Heroes, Lemieux Loses Fan Favorite Status; Disgustingly Cheap Shots Lindgren, Second Line Domination, Hockey Cards, M$GN/Fire Vally, Six A’s, Trade Deadline, Injury Report & More
If you haven’t already, subscribe to this blog for the next update:
Up next: one more game before the All-Star break, when the first-place Panthers arrive at M$G.
As always here, thanks for reading and…
LET’S GO RANGERS!
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