NYR/FLA ECF Game 3 Review: Alexis “Guy” Lafreniere, Barclay “Hockey God Mode” Goodrow & CZAR IGOR Carry Passenger Blueshirts To a 2-1 Series Lead; “Wennie The Pooh” Finds Overtime Honey For First NYR Career Goal, “Fat Cats” Will Eventually Turn Up Again; Don’t Forget About The First Two-Rounds, Fox & Trouba Playing Through It, Special Teams Swing Games – And So Does Ref Kelly “Draft Kings” Sutherland, Another REMPUTATION Penalty, Never Say Die, Laviolette & More

As the story goes and still remains – these 2023-24 New York Rangers have a flair for the dramatics – and also prefer vomit-inducing roller-coasters over leisurely strolls in the park too! As a fan, and after watching the Blueshirts’ 5-4 Game 3 overtime victory from Sunday afternoon – my whole body felt like I had just left a 12-round fight with an in-his-prime Mike Tyson. In other words, I can’t imagine what the athletes who actually played in this match felt like afterwards! In a contest that the alleged home team, who were playing in front of a sea of blue, the Florida Panthers, largely dominated; it was once again “The Find-A-Way To Win” Rangers who prevailed, and where arguably, the three most consistent players of these 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs, or at least of this Eastern Conference Final, Alexis Lafreniere, Barclay Goodrow and CZAR IGOR, who all led the way. And just imagine what will transpire when Artemi Panarin, Mika Zibanejad and Chris Kreider ever get going again!

Greetings and salutations everyone and welcome to another blog here on BlueCollarBlueShirts.com. Ten down, six to go, for your now 10-3 in the postseason 2023-24 New York Rangers.

And yep – the publication of this GAME REVIEW blog is once again belated – but as mentioned on this site numerous times before – I must put luck and superstition (and “recovery time” too!) over this funny little writing hobby of mine!

In other words, and to answer your question – YES – I did attend my local watering hole for their Game 3 watch party, where as a result, my dear-old-dad is now 13-0 this season whenever watching the Rangers from his favorite bar stool (the far left corner!):

(L-R) Big Red, Boosh, Ten O’Clock Tommy, Yours Truly, Will and Pops – and all enjoying pops at the bar too!

Before pressing into all of the events from Sunday’s Game 3, and because my Game 2 blog was posted late and with this site’s server needing repairs after receiving a record amount of traffic (we were down for about ten-hours), then in case you missed it, then I posted my Game 2 review on Saturday night here:

I’ve talked about all of this in long-form already, so check this site’s archives for all of it, but as time marches on, it now feels like Alexis Lafreniere’s career arc is mimicking another fellow French-Canadian of his from Montreal, Guy Lafleur. Both of these first-overall picks, while not under the same circumstances (Lafreniere had to deal with that whole pesky pandemic – duh – and three different head coaches in four years too), had rocky beginnings, and where it was in Year Four of their respective careers where they first started looking like players worthy of their draft status. And as far as the softball stuff goes? At this rate, I’ll buy Lafreniere a season-pass to any Quebec batting cage that he wants if he continues to play like this!

As noted in my Game 2 review as linked above, and when heading into Game 3 – then there was only one question left to be answered prior to the 3:20PM puck drop from Sunday:

“What’s the line-up?”

The Rangers, who didn’t practice on Saturday following Friday night’s victory, also didn’t have a traditional morning skate on Sunday either, and due to their Game 3 matinee start.

It wasn’t until the pregame line rushes where we got our first inkling on how Laviolette was going to handle the unfortunate injury sustained by Jimmy Vesey – and really – it wasn’t until a minute before the game began, when both head coaches had to submit their line-ups, where such information became concrete.

Matt Rempe, an absolute stud, remained in Lavy’s Line-Up, on a new fourth line, a BANGER of BRUTES, which also featured Will Cuylle and Barclay Goodrow.

Filip Chytil, who in my opinion, looks nowhere close to being 100%, playing timid and is still rusty, remained with the BFF.

Kaapo Kakko, a much publicized healthy scratch in Game 2, did receive a break and another chance due to Vesey’s injury, as it was “The Feckless Finn” – and not the chomping-at-the-bit Blake Wheeler – who got the nod.

But as noted many times before, and first starting in the off-season which is now over a year ago – while you need both a strong bottom-six and depth scoring – at the end of the day, it still all boils down to whatever your top stars do – your BIG BUCK BLUESHIRTS/FAT CATS.

And now, following the results and aftermath of Game 3 – and we’re still waiting for the tippy-top of the Rangers’ highest-paid players to show up in this series – Artemi Panarin, Mika Zibanejad and Chris Kreider.

Granted, while I understand all of the negative discourse that’s presently out there about this super-rich trio – I also don’t forget about the first two-rounds of these 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs either – as it was these three men that did a lot of the heavy lifting in those eight wins.

And don’t forget about the GAG LINE 2.0 center, Vincent Trocheck, either – as #16, and unlike these three, has been a complete revelation and stud game-in and game-out – and as his game-high two assists and nineteen faceoff wins would suggest.

But alas, the sport of hockey, and going all the way back to its roots in Canada from some 150-years-ago, has always had one constant – and throughout all of its forms, history and eras.

That one singular constant?

“It’s a team game.”

In a Game 3 where the highest-paid forwards weren’t at their best, and while the two highest-paid defensemen are currently playing through injuries too (Adam Fox and Jacob Trouba), then it was up to everyone else to shoulder the load – and where no one’s shoulders were sorer after this match than the bedrock backstop, CZAR IGOR.

One look at Shestyorkin’s stat line and if you didn’t see the game, then you would have thought that he had a so-so showing, as he made 33 saves on 37 shots against, allowed four goals and finished with a sub-par .900 save percentage (.892).

Such a drawn conclusion couldn’t be any further from the truth – and where this four GAA and .892 save percentage may have been the best performance by any NHL goaltender in history with these numbers.

I don’t do the ANALytic nonsense on this site – as I solely rely on what my two eyes tell me – and they told me that CZAR IGOR was a goaltending god in Game 3.

In a game where every save made felt like one thousand of them were made – then I’d reckon of CZAR IGOR’s 33 denials – that at least 30 of them were of the “high-danger” variety.

And while such a stat (shot attempts) doesn’t always tell the story, but on this night it did, as the Panthers totaled nearly 100 shot attempts in this game – while the Rangers only mustered up 40 attempts.

The 100 shot attempts just speaks to the roller-coaster feeling that you experienced throughout this game – and of course – especially in the third period where if the Rangers ever touched the puck during those twenty minutes for two consecutive seconds or more – then I don’t remember it!

I love kicking the analytical community – and it doesn’t matter to me if they’re up or down – but they are down now! After all, while I’ve been saying the same thing on this site ever since July of 2021 – Goodrow earns his salary in the playoffs – and not in the regular season; at the same time, these nerds, geeks and freaks were fingering their own hiney holes (and probably sniffing their fingers afterwards too) when trying to figure out how the Rangers could buyout and/or trade Goodrow. Today, and it took them three years to get here – they are now starting to realize that perhaps hockey games aren’t played on spreadsheets, video game machines and computers – and where these mediums, much like their charts and graphs, can’t determine and assess a player’s heart, drive and motivation – and especially when it matters the most – the PLAYOFFS! Photo Credit: NYR

It wasn’t all bad – and where perhaps the word “bad” should be replaced with the better suited two-word phrase of “gut-turning!”

That said, and if there was anything truly “BAD,” then it was the fact that the NHL actually allowed Kelly Sutherland to officiate this game – a man with a big-time gambling account who often gets involved during Ranger games – while always favoring their opponent.

(For a recent example of this, then check out: https://bluecollarblueshirts.com/5724/ )

With Kelly “Draft Kings” Sutherland disgracing the profession of officiating once again, and the on-the-take referee began this game by giving Florida three straight power-plays.

By the time that the game concluded and the Panthers had finished with a triple amount of power-plays as the Rangers did – a total of 6-2 – and where Florida even had a double-minor power-play too.

And with the Rangers’ special teams cooling off a bit, ice cold when compared to the first two-rounds – then Sutherland’s Zebras helped the Cats big-time in Game 3.

The Blueshirts’ power-play, now one of their last eighteen, finished 0-2.

While the Rangers’ penalty kill allowed two Florida goals – they did make up for one of them – as Barclay Goodrow, King of the Short Hand, scored another man-down goal in these 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

And while you can’t blame the officials for the Rangers’ power-play woes – you CAN question Sutherland’s antics once again – such shady officiating that even the Hall of Fame scribe, Larry Brooks, of the New York Post, is calling out – so much so that Brooks has even written an article demanding the NHL bar Sutherland from ever again being on the ice at the same time as the Rangers.

In other words, while fans, both rational and irrational, will always have their gripes about the officials – but you know it’s bad when Hall of Fame writers are also leading the charge against these Fan-Duel sponsored officials – and referees who are never held accountable, nor have to speak to their actions in post-game press conferences, either.

Simply put – Sutherland can not, and I repeat, CAN NOT, be allowed to officiate any more Ranger games – as the evidence, circumstantial or otherwise, against him is just way too far overwhelming.

Without a shadow of a doubt and Lafreniere has earned his “RANGER STRIPES” in these 2024 Playoffs. Photo Credit: NYR

At just the 1:45 mark of Game 3 and the Rangers were already in the box – as Braden Schneider was bagged for a delay of game call – and where you couldn’t blame Sutherland & Co. for this call – but you could blame these heathens later on in this match for Ranger penalties – and Florida no calls too.

Just sixty-five seconds later, and Sam Reinhart, who scored 57 goals in the regular season, and who was previously quiet in this here Eastern Conference Final, scored his first goal of this series, a power-play goal, as he was able to make quick work of Fox when backhanding a roof-job from the paint for the game’s first goal.

1-0, bad guys, and just like that – and where in a rarity – the Rangers’ penalty kill didn’t look so hot here either.

Disappointed, but still determined, and some four-minutes-and-change later, Lafreniere, following a pass from his center Vincenzo, beat Sergei Bobrovsky with a backhander himself.

1-1, as once again, #13 continues to enjoy his breakout season.

Just 25-seconds later, and at the 7:42 mark of the contest, Goodrow, perhaps hellbent on challenging CZAR IGOR for the Conn Smythe Trophy, scored, following a tip from a Schneider shot from the point.

2-1, GOOD GUYS – but in what would create ulcers later on – another Rangers’ lead eventually blown – and with a bigger lead blown to follow.

Sutherland, furious about the Blueshirts’ lead, wasted no less than ten-seconds after Goodrow’s go-ahead goal when boxing Miller for tripping.

However, the Rangers would kill off this penalty – and you can thank CZAR IGOR for that.

Since Sutherland has made it known that he’s the biggest critic of Matt Rempe out there – and as his previous talking down to in the Carolina series proved to us – then, and come the 14:07 mark, the crooked official boxed #73 for defending himself against Reinhart.

Reinhart, and as he did on Florida’s first power-play, scored another PPG on the third consecutive Panthers’ man-advantage of the game – and via the backhand once again too.

2-2 – and where everyone wearing red, and white & black too, were celebrating.

Come the end of the first frame, and the Rangers, despite being short-handed thrice over, still remain tied against the two teams they were playing against.

I also thought that my youngest niece, Chelsea, soon-to-be five-years-old, best summed up the Cats:

The second period of Game 3, perhaps an aberration on Sunday, was the best twenty-minutes of hockey that the Rangers played.

The officials, perhaps warned by the league at intermission that they were making their bias too obvious, gave the Blueshirts two power-plays – a Stenlund interference call at the 5:11 mark and a Barkov cross-checking penalty at the 10:37 mark.

But as noted – the Rangers’ power-play has been all or nothing throughout these playoffs – meaning that they either score two or three PPG’s a game – or it’s a never-ending drought for games on end.

Sadly, the latter took place here, and by the end of it, these two power-plays, the only two man-advantages that the Rangers received, went nowhere.

Thankfully, both Lafreniere and Goodrow were around for an encore performance – where this time around – it took them a time-span of 2:51 to put the Blueshirts up by two goals.

At the 15:23 mark, Lafreniere, not to be denied, dipsy-doodled his way towards Bobrovsky, and where with seemingly every Panther on the ice draped all over him, crashed the net – and then put the puck inside of it.


What transpired next was perhaps the most controversial play of the game, as at the 17:35 mark, Trouba laid an elbow, Macho Man Randy Savage style, on Rodrigues.

If this penalty wasn’t bad enough, it became worse when two extra minutes were tacked onto the captain’s infraction, as he was also assessed with slashing Bennett.

I thought Rodrigues embellished this elbow a bit – but I also thought that Trouba deserved this penalty.

And unlike others – I just can’t get on Trouba for this elbow – because after all – we’ve seen the Panthers, most notably Ryan Lomberg, do the same thing all series.

At some point, the Rangers had to reciprocate.

Better than that?

Goodrow, on the first half of the Trouba double-minor, scored another shorty.

4-2, GOOD GUYS – and you could feel the life GROW in Sunrise – as most in-attendance were Blueshirt backers!

With the score remaining at 4-2, GOOD GUYS, when entering the third frame – while you knew that nothing ever comes easy – you also didn’t expect an all-out collapse.

Arguably, this third period from Game 3 was the worst yet of these playoffs for the Rangers – or at least for everybody not named CZAR IGOR.

The Fat Cats couldn’t get it going. The entire team was pinned into their own zone. Filip Chytil, Kaapo Kakko, Jack Roslovic and Alex Wennberg looked like a quartet who belonged in the ECHL – if not overseas.

Not even Goodrow and Lafreniere could band-aid the pain away.

Old reliable, Ryan Lindgren himself, added more scars and damage to his face – a face that’s becoming very reminiscent of an end-of-his-career maskless Terry Sawchuk.

In turn, and with the Panthers whizzing a puck every other three seconds at CZAR IGOR, the “home” team scored two goals to tie the game within a time-span of under two minutes, as Barkov struck at the 5:04 mark, while Gustav Forsling got the equalizer at the 6:58 mark.

4-4, and a two-goal blown lead, just like that.

With plenty of time remaining, 13:02 to be exact, for the Panthers to put the Rangers out of their misery – and CZAR IGOR wasn’t having any of it.

And for good measure, CZAR IGOR, who recorded seven short-handed saves in this game, made several more when Trouba was sent to the box yet again, following his hold on Tkachuk with 5:37 left to be played.

At the time, not only were you surprised that the Panthers hadn’t scored their fifth goal yet – but you were even more so surprised – and relieved too – that the Rangers’ penalty kill, hairy as George “The Animal” Steele, survived these two-minutes of man-down play.

You also had to change your underwear when with under twenty-seconds left to be ticked – and CZAR IGOR absolutely robbed the hero of last year’s ECF, Tkachuk himself, from scoring another game-winning goal in another Stanley Cup Final penultimate series showdown.

These two teams, still even at four goals a side after regulation, returned to the ice for another overtime, the second consecutive bonus period of the series.

The Panthers, just having their way with the Rangers, picked up right from where they had left off.

So did CZAR IGOR, as he put every shot into the litter box.

And then it happened.

As you were just groaning about seeing the offensively-deficient third line back out there, and at the 5:35 mark, Lindgren, whose face looks like it was covered with shrapnel, fired a shot towards Bobrovsky from deep at the left point.

Wennberg, who hasn’t scored one goal since arriving from Krakville at the 3/8 NHL Trade Deadline, found a hell of a time to score his first – as Lindgren’s shot caught a piece of the Swede for the 5-4, GOOD GUYS, overtime game winning walk-off goal!


But for how low the Rangers were at points in this game, and they were just above rock-bottom – they still FOUND A WAY.

And for a team of destiny and fate – it’s a win like this that makes you think – and believe – in this manner.


All Stanley Cup champions get luck along the way – and despite having to play against two teams in Game 3, two members of the Animal Kingdom to boot, the Cats and the Zebras – it was a lucky deflection off of a stiff that allowed the Rangers to take the 2-1 series lead.

But of course, none of this ever happens without CZAR IGOR – and a goaltender that saw more rubber in this game than a cheap 42nd St. prostitute looking to pay her bills at the end of the month.

At this time, let’s blow through the rest of our usual segments – and the GAME REVIEW too!

The Rangers didn’t bother to upload, nor share either, what Laviolette had to say on Sunday afternoon prior to Game 3.

As noted above, there was nothing really to talk about going into this game aside from who was going to replace Vesey.

But since Lavy isn’t revealing his line-ups anymore, no pertinent questions were going to be answered, which is probably why the Rangers didn’t even bother to share what their head coach said prior to puck drop.

Here was Laviolette’s line-up for the thirteenth playoff game of the postseason – and the 95th-overall game of 2023-24:

FIRST LINE: Panarin/Trocheck/Lafreniere

SECOND LINE: Kreider/Zibanejad/Chytil

THIRD LINE: Kakko/Wennberg/Roslovic

FOURTH LINE: Cuylle/Goodrow/Rempe

FIRST PAIR: Lindgren/Fox

SECOND PAIR: Miller/Trouba

THIRD PAIR: Gustafsson/Schneider


BACK-UP: Quick

“Black Aces” and Scratches: Domingue, Edstrom, Jones, Ruhwedel and Wheeler

Injured: Vesey

Taxi Squad: Alex Belzile, Brett Berard, Anton Blidh, Ben Harpur, Dylan Garand, Jake Leschyshyn, Connor Mackey, Victor Mancini ,Brennan Othmann, Tyler Pitlick, Matthew Robertson, Brandon Scanlin  and Adam Sykora.


The following graphics and information come from ESPN.com:





23 5 18 .783 15 3 0 0 0 64:47 0


37 4 33 .892 26 7 0 0 0 65:31 0


I had my usual nectar of the gods, about twenty in total, Labatt Blue, at the pub on Sunday!

Since I pretty much recapped the entire game above, I’ll make this GAME REVIEW short.

Plus, and as noted in my Game 2 review – it’s more about the the stories, and most certainly the final result, more than anything else.

Furthermore, my disgusting dinosaur computer has frozen about 9876786786969 times – and I’m also trying to hit a Memorial Day parade in-town.

With that said, let’s get right to it, the GAME REVIEW!

This picture is dedicated to Sieve Vagistat – and how anyone can watch these M$GN pregame and post-game shows is beyond me too! Take your expected stats and shove them up your five-hole!


Kakko, in another one of his never-ending chances to finally get off his damn horse and do something, recorded the first Rangers’ SOG in the first-minute of this game – and that was that.

Overall, the Feckless Finn once again finished with no points – and with this lone SOG as his only offensive note.

As previously noted on this site, I still don’t know why he’s getting the call over Blake Wheeler – and especially with both Chytil and Roslovic equally as ineffective as Kakko whenever playing with the BFF.

Following a brutal Schneider turnover and his penalty, this is when Reinhart walked right in and scored his power-play goal.

1-0, bad guys – and where Fox, who looks like he’s hurting even more day-by-day, didn’t look so hot here.

Once returned to full-strength, and this is when Rempe received his first shift of the game – and where he recorded his first of three hits too – as he immediately went after Lomberg.

Laviolette, no longer having the last change, didn’t reward Rempe’s amazing performance from Game 2 when the big man played throughout both the third and overtime periods.

Instead, Rempe only logged 4:02 in this match – and that was that.

But even so – no one maximizes their minutes in the fashion that this unicorn does – and I’d go right back to Rempe in the line-up for Game 4.

And unlike Chytil, Kakko, Roslovic and even Wennberg – Rempe did more on offense in regulation time than these four – and perhaps was even more productive than Panarin and Zibanejad too – and you’ll soon see why.

But of course, no one, other than Goodrow, was as offensively effective and as successful as Lafreniere:


25-seconds later?

Goody Got It – AGAIN:

2-1, GOOD GUYS – and where on this Goodrow goal – look at who was screening Bob.

Good old REMPESTEIN himself!

While screened assists aren’t tracked – they ought to be – and where if they were – then I’d think that Kreider would be a league-leader in this dept.

With 9:17 remaining, Zibanejad, only three SOG in this game (only one at even-strength), had a chance to increase the lead – but no dice.

And when the fourth line hopped over the boards – and the bar that I was at were all OOHING AND AAHING – as Rempe almost created a breakaway for himself.

Again, I can’t think of any other player in league history that has had a start, or even a career for that matter, in the same way as Rempe is currently enjoying.

Prior to Screwjob Sutherland falsely alleging Rempe of roughing Reinhart at the 14:07 mark, and CZAR IGOR, under duress all-game, came up with two big saves.

It’s a shame that Rempe was put in the box here – as many are blaming this latest REMPUTATION penalty for Florida’s second power-play goal of the game – while ignoring that Miller had two chances to clear a puck while on the PK – but never could – hence Reinhart’s tying 2-2 goal at the 14:46 mark.

But at least Laviolette put Rempe right back out there for his next shift – but he’d staple the big man to the bench as the game progressed.

Tkachuk, with a game-high seven shots on goal, was stopped all seven-times by CZAR IGOR, and with the Rangers’ goalie stopping the Panther to close this first period.

2-2, after twenty-minutes.

Here’s what I said at the time:

I’ve been a DAY ONE CZAR IGOR fan – even going all the way back to 2017 when I used to regularly wear my Shestyorkin KHL jersey at M$G. He’s making a winner not out of only me – but of everyone residing in Rangerstown, USA too!


CZAR IGOR was under fire early and often in this period – and where that horrendous third line didn’t do him any favors either.

By the five-minute mark and the Rangers were being out-shot 5-0.

Following the two failed power-plays, and where that second unit sans Lafreniere is as worthless as a magnum condom at a lesbian orgy, Kreider almost had Lafreniere set-up for a 3-2 goal with 4:55 remaining.

While such a goal didn’t take place here – it did take place just eighteen-seconds later – following #13’s one-man show to the net:


Trouba, while warranted in seeking revenge against the Cats, picked a wrong time to get his comeuppance, as he took his double-minor two-minutes later.

Fortunately for the captain, one of his alternate charges bailed him out, as this is when Goody doubled the lead via his shorty:


For those wondering, and with both Lafreniere and Goodrow having two-goal games on Sunday, both men now have six goals scored each in these 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Only Trocheck and Kreider, with seven goals, have more.

In other words, it’s fine time for Zibanejad and Panarin to let their actions speak – rather than their words – as you can’t expect Goodrow to be Rocket Richard all playoffs.

But we’ll take it if that happens to become the case!

With 1:25 remaining on the Rangers’ kill, and we remained 4-2, GOOD GUYS, through forty-minutes.

Here’s what I said at the time:

Super Shesty was able to survive all of the kryptonite from the third period – where in this case – the word “kryptonite” can be substituted with the word “Rangers!” Holy Gump Worsley Batman!


As noted earlier – the Rangers looked horrible in these final twenty-minutes – and where throughout the entire period – you were just waiting for inevitable to happen – a smooth sailin’ Panthers’ victory.

While he did give up two goals, none of his own fault, CZAR IGOR wasn’t having such a thing.

As only Lafreniere and Goodrow had any flicker of life on behalf of the Blueshirt skaters, the discombobulated and “what the hell?” showing from everyone else led to the Barkov and Forsling goals.


As The Concussed Czech looked like he had already hit CTE/vegetable status, then if you were like me, then you were just begging Laviolette to double-shift Lafreniere.

And that’s what would happen – albeit in overtime.

As Chytil and Kakko continued to look as lost as a pair of NYC tourists, with 11:30 remaining, Laviolette decided to take his timeout.

Then, it looked like the Rangers would have a break – as it looked like Zibanejad, bleeding from the mouth, was high-sticked.

However, rather than a double-minor and a chance to put this to bed – it was revealed on replay that it was Mika’s own stick that caught his mush.

Play on.

In what felt like a never-ending, or at least twenty-minutes, Rangers’ PK; Trouba put the team at a disadvantage with his hold on a diving Tkachuk with 5:37 left remaining.

Once again, and in a tied game – and Sutherland was right there to give a Blueshirts’ opponent one last try on their power-play.

The Rangers survived, and I mean SURVIVED, this penalty kill.

And as you were just begging to get out of this tied and into the overtime – CZAR IGOR bailed out his teammates one more time – with an absolute robbery committed on Tkachuk.

4-4 after sixty-minutes – and where you just had that sinking feeling in your guts too.

Here’s what I said at the time:

While of course, I’m elated that the Rangers won after Wennberg’s puck-luck deflection goal; at the same time, I also found it comical that the idiotic beat reporters named him as the first star of the game. Just ridiculous. It should’ve been CZAR IGOR, Lafreniere and Goodrow, and in that 1-2-3 order. But alas, “The Three Stars of the Game” is pretty much meaningless – I admit it!


With Lafreniere replacing Chytil with the BFF to open the period – and CZAR IGOR made five overtime saves prior to “WENNIE THE POOH” finding his pot of overtime honey!

Here’s Maloney on the call – and where he summed up this game the best – “Call the cops, a robbery was just committed!”


5-4, GOOD GUYS, your final.

2-1, GOOD GUYS, your ECF series!

Praise the hockey gods – and while it shouldn’t be overlooked how the Blueshirts completely blew their two-goal lead in the third period – at least they found a way to win – again.

The most honest statement in all of the land today!

For whatever reason, and the Rangers didn’t upload Laviolette’s post-game remarks.

But what he said was what you’d expect him to say – nothing but high praise for Lafreniere, Goodrow and CZAR IGOR – and with a sigh of relief about Wennberg’s winner too.

Here’s one snippet:

Memorial Day Monday is an off-day for the Rangers – and where I completely agree with Ron Duguay on how the Blueshirts should approach it:

The Rangers, whipping boys of the sports books all playoffs (how’s that working out?) entered the Conference Final round as the team least likeliest to advance. Today, and after their Game 3 win? They are now not only the most likeliest team to advance – but to win the whole damn thing too! Photo Credit: Caesars

It’s playoff hockey, which means that you can only enjoy these games once they end – and providing that the Rangers win of course!

Similar to Games 1 and 2 of this series – and my stomach was doing back-flips like a Hall of Fame trapeze artist when watching Game 3!

It’s only now, and with a ginger ale, and some crackers too consumed, that I can settle down!

But of course, all of the butterflies, angina and stomach pain will return this Tuesday night, as the Rangers look to make it 3-1 in the series – and should that happen – then go on to try to win the series at M$G on Thursday.

While I’ll be satisfied and gratified with Rangers in 5, I’m still sticking with my original prediction of Rangers in 6 – as after all – I just can’t see the Panthers dropping four straight.

And should a Game 6 be necessary, then yours truly and my merry crew will be right back at our bar-stools on Saturday night – as I can’t get off from work for Games 4 and 5.

Plus, I’m currently flirting with a Mickey Mantle liver these days – so perhaps going to work and drying out is not the worst thing in the world either!

Furthermore, I do need that overtime cash to buy myself a new computer – and where hopefully this summer – I’m writing a book on it about the 2024 Stanley Cup Champions – the New York F’N Rangers!

One last parting thought?

As a result of Sunday’s ECF Game 3 win, and Laviolette has now matched his predecessor, Gerard Gallant, distance with the club.

Six more wins and Laviolette will join an elite few to have led the franchise to the Cup – Lester Patrick, Frank Boucher and Mike Keenan – and where of these three – only Iron Mike had to win sixteen playoff games in order to achieve his goal.

Let’s hope that Laviolette becomes the second man to accomplish this feat!

See ya late Tuesday night with a Game 4 review – and thanks to all who have given their lives to our country.

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!

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

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

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

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

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


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Now on sale!

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

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

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

Thanks for reading.


Sean McCaffrey


@NYCTHEMIC on the Tweeter machine

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6 thoughts on “NYR/FLA ECF Game 3 Review: Alexis “Guy” Lafreniere, Barclay “Hockey God Mode” Goodrow & CZAR IGOR Carry Passenger Blueshirts To a 2-1 Series Lead; “Wennie The Pooh” Finds Overtime Honey For First NYR Career Goal, “Fat Cats” Will Eventually Turn Up Again; Don’t Forget About The First Two-Rounds, Fox & Trouba Playing Through It, Special Teams Swing Games – And So Does Ref Kelly “Draft Kings” Sutherland, Another REMPUTATION Penalty, Never Say Die, Laviolette & More

  1. Sean – Thanks for another terrific game report. I watched the first 2 periods at a bar where I didn’t have a good view of the small tv screen and there was a musician who drowned out the sound track of the game. I suspected that Rempe’s “roughing” penalty 14 minutes into the 1st period was only because a referee saw him engaging in playoff hockey, but I wasn’t sure until I read your explanation that it was indeed another case of Matt Rempe being Matt Rempe and Kelly Sutherland being Kelly Sutherland. It would be good if Sutherland could be given a suspension for the rest of the playoffs. He’s earned it.

  2. In fairness to Kakko, he made a good play on the 50/50 face-off that led to the OT goal. His work got the puck to Roslovic who got it to Lindgren. Kaako was originally credited with the 2nd assist but then they changed it (correctly) to Roslovic.

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