NYR/BOS 5/8 Review: Rangers Close Crazy Season on a High Note; Have a Game To Be Proud About, Kids Shine; Fat Cats Dine, Lafreniere’s Positive Energy, Richards Maximizes Minutes, The Future of DQ, Drury Interview, Kinkaid Stars But It’s a Win for the CZAR, Insufferable M$GN Broadcasters; Vally vs Micheletti, JD Speaks Out, Seattle Draft, Moving Forward & More

In the Rangers last game of this 2021 season, the Rangers won a thriller, defeating the Bruins by a final score of 5-4. Go figure, for a team that has struggled tremendously in one-goal games all season, the Rangers close out this season by winning in this fashion. Isn’t that amazing Suzyn?

“I knew they had all these things in them and we had an opportunity to kind of show it and we did. As we continue to grow as an organization, these characteristics and traits we showed over the last week are going to bode well for us moving forward.” – Current Rangers head coach David Quinn, on 5/8/21, moments after the Rangers 5-4 victory over the Bruins. If you noticed, DQ used words like “we” and “us” and talked about being with the Rangers next season. And while DQ should talk that way, many fans and writers already have DQ out of town.


“We kind of talked about that before the game. I was actually talking to Ryan Strome about it this morning, where these last 10 days have felt so bad, just the way things have gone and all that has gone on in our organization and you kind of forget that you want to judge your season on the totality of it.

To be in the hunt up to 10 days ago, which feels like 10 years ago, and not have Trouba and Kreider for those two games against the Islanders and to lose those two guys, put us behind the eight-ball. Losing the way we have lately and with what has been going on in our organization, with the Wilson incident and the Jeff and JD situation and it’s been difficult, but it was great to finish the way we did.

It was exciting for all of us to get Chris his first victory as GM. There is so much that has gone on and that might get lost in all of this, that Chris has an opportunity to be a GM and it’s a great opportunity for him. I know that all of us, and our players, were happy that we were able to get him his first win as a GM.” – DQ, one last time here on 5/8/21, while reflecting on this win and talking about what this win meant.

I should also mention here, that as far as DQ’s job status goes, I don’t think we’ll hear anything until after the player exit interviews are conducted.

As talked about before, I think we’ll know one way or the other, and by Wednesday the latest, if DQ will be brought back for next season. In other words, I don’t expect the Rangers to wait too long when making this decision. I also don’t see Drury firing DQ on Mother’s Day either, because that would be a real MF move!

Lastly while on this, I’m on record – I’ve never been more “50-50” than on what to do here with DQ. I see both sides of the coin of this huge decision. All I can do is support whatever Drury does!


As I’ll recap during the M$GN segment of the blog, I thought Chris Drury gave a solid interview today. I know I’ve said this during the last two blogs, but I’ll say it one more time here – I’m fine with him as team president and general manager. I don’t expect him to rock the boat. The only thing that irks me is Dolan’s infatuation with Senile Sather. Photo Credit: NYR

Greetings and salutations everyone and welcome to another blog here on BlueCollarBlueShirts.com. Now the real fun begins.

On Saturday afternoon in Beantown, the Rangers defeated their Original Six rival in the Boston Bruins, winning the game by a final of 5-4. While the score may suggest that the Rangers won a close one, and as they did; it should also be mentioned that late into the game, the Rangers had two separate two goal leads. The team’s starting goaltender, in Igor Shestyorkin, and who entered the game near the midway mark of the third period; surrendered a pair of late goals to the Bruins, but ultimately held on for the win. If there’s any “shame” about this win, at least when it comes to individual players – it’s the fact that third string goaltender Keith Kinkaid didn’t get the win on his record and like he deserved. However, a win is a win and that’s all you can ask for.

While this game was meaningless for the Rangers, at least in regards to their playoff hopes; the Rangers didn’t play like their season was over. Instead, and featuring a line-up of many young and baby-faced players, the Rangers came out as if they were the playoff team, rather than the team they’ve been chasing in the standings for the last month, in these very same Bruins of Boston.

As I reflect on today’s game and the season in general; this final game of the season felt like a great television show season finale, with a cliffhanger that left you anxious and on the edge of your seat for next season. For fans of the TV show “Dexter”, this game was like the season four finale of that series, where now, you just can’t wait to see what happens next. And really, that’s a great feeling to have, as no one wanted the Rangers to have a game that came off like the “Dexter” series finale – a finale which was one of the worst TV finales in all of television history!

I’m not going to do all the looking ahead stuff today, because there will be plenty of time for that. Even with this season now over, I feel like I still have a million words to write, as next week, I’ll have blogs reviewing the entire season, the Final Report Card, the future, and everything else in-between. I’m also looking forward to doing a DeLorean blog, where I’ll look back at the Eddie Giacomin return game, as I’ve recently received a full length copy of that game.

And oh yeah, sometime this summer, I have to finish my “New York Rangers Rink of Honor” book too, a book that’s now a proof-reading mess, since I talked about John Davidson in the present tense throughout this future tome!

That being said, there’s one thing I do want to say here, in regards to the Rangers immediate future – I don’t think this game has any bearing on what happens next. I don’t think this game result decided DQ’s future one way or the other. Ditto Mika Zibanejad. Ditto the now restricted free agent, in Pavel Buchnevich. When it comes down to it, and as he should, I think new Rangers general manager and team president, in Chris Drury, will assess everyone individually by what they did all-season long. To me, all this win was from today was just a good send-off and something to smile about, as we now await the 2021-2022 season.

One day in the future, this ping pong ball may go up into the rafters. Then again, as was evident once again during this broadcast, the Rangers do a horrible job of honoring their past. Maybe Drury can change that, as that’s one thing he oversees as team president. Photo Credit: NBCSN

Had the Rangers lost today, it would’ve been their sixth loss in a row, and you would’ve had headlines about the Rangers limping and whimpering to the finish line. Instead, the Rangers did give you some hope for next season, as their young kids had some great games. It’s much better to say “I can’t wait for next year”, than leaving this game saying “I’m glad this shit is over.”

Alexis Lafreniere, despite not being named as one of the top three stars of the game (Zibanejad, Buchnevich and Fox, and in that order, were named the top three stars) had one of his best games of the season. Vitali Kravtsov had a good game and closed out his season with a goal. K’Andre Miller, who has been up-and-down all season, had one of his better games too. Zac Jones, who was playing in front of his now former UMASS teammates, had a solid performance. And heck, the debuting Justin Richards most certainly maximized his minutes in this game, even picking up his first point during the first goal scored in this contest.

And I’ll duck as I type this – despite all the good vibes and feelings from this win, it’s my opinion that had the Rangers had five more games left during this 2021 campaign and games against the top four teams in the division; I could see the Rangers losing four of them. “The Find-A-New-Way-To-Lose” Rangers have done a fine job of living up to that label all season, and for a team that has been inconsistent all season – it just felt like the Rangers were on the right end of one today. After all, this league is always “Any Given Sunday”, and the Rangers were a day early today!

Truthfully speaking, there’s also something to be said about the principle of “the law of averages.” And lastly, and in my final comment of this blog that reeks of negativity – the Rangers closed out this season winning one of their last six games. Don’t shoot the messenger, I’m just giving you the facts!

That all being said, you take each game one-by-one, and while I don’t buy the rhetoric of “this game will help the team next season”; it’s nice to finish the season like this, rather than with another sad loss.

Can you believe it? This is your final game recap for this 2021 season, which also means that this is your final PLUGS segment for past game reviews too!

Let’s get the plugs out of the way and get into the game.

Say it with me as you frantically scroll past these plugs-  here are my last few blogs in case you missed them:

NYR/BOS 5/6 Review: “The Good, The Bad & The Boring”; Rangers Go Snoring, A “Watching Paint Dry” Game, Interviews w/Dolan, Drury & Sather; Dolan Explains Decision, Diplomatic Drury, Ron Duguay’s “Up in the Blue Seats” Podcast Recap w/Nick Fotiu, Buchnevich Wrongly Suspended; Dolan Rightfully Fined, Missing Mika & “Rookie Wall” Miller, Three Periods To Go, Busy Off-Season Ahead, Ratings & More


 

NYR/WSH 5/5 Review: Jeff Gorton and John Davidson Sacked in Shocker, Rangers Clap Back with Right Hand Rockers, James Dolan’s Decisions Cause NYR Derision, Messier Lashes Out, Chris Drury Promoted & the Return of Senile Sather, Why the Sky Isn’t Falling, DQ Safe For Now; Comments on Future, Buchnevich, Smith & Strome Handle Biz, A Day To Question But a Night to Be Proud Of, Shades of 2012, Wilson Powders Out, A Possible DeAngelo Return & More from the Craziest and Most Newsworthy Day in Rangers History


 

BCBS For 5/5: Adam Fox Wins The 2021 Frank Boucher Fan Trophy, Tom Wilson’s Laughable Punishment; NYR Calls For Parros To Be “Canceled” & Removed as Head of Player Safety, NHL Sets a Dangerous Precedent, Rangers Lack of Toughness (Online & On the Ice) a Major Issue; Panarin, Trouba & Lindgren All Finished, Officers vs Enforcers, Geersten Unlikely to Debut & Why, AV’s Rangers, DQ & NYR Alumni Speak Out on Wilson & More


On Friday, John Davidson released this statement, through his agents over at the Montag Group. Photo Credit: Montag Group.

After a week of explosive news, where sleep was definitely lost along the way; (I only slept three hours on Wednesday night myself!) Friday was pretty quiet in Rangerstown, USA. The only news item to cap off one of the craziest weeks in all of Rangers franchise history, was the statement that JD released. As you’d expect, JD was classy and graceful with what he said, even if you know that deep down, he has to be furious.

As the Rangers “recover” from the bombshells, work their way out of the rubble and get back to reconstructing; the only player in this story to not speak out yet is Jeff Gorton. I’m sure we’ll hear from him soon enough, where like JD, I’m sure Gorton will be full of platitudes and won’t say anything negative.

The only other news item which was broken before this game, was that Larry Brooks, of the New York Post, wrote an article where he reported that the Rangers current position on Tony DeAngelo hasn’t changed. I saw some fans second-guess Brooks about this, but how can you? There’s no other reporter on the beat that has as much inside access as Brooks does. After all, on Thursday, Brooks did land the coveted and exclusive interview with James Dolan.

In other words, expect the Tony DeAngelo buy-out this summer and as fast as the Rangers are legally able to do so.


With this season now complete, only Alexis Lafreniere and Mika Zibanejad played in every single game for the Rangers this season. Both finished their seasons on a high note. Photo Credit: M$GN

The Rangers, who were already the walking wounded heading into this game, announced that two more regulars wouldn’t be playing in this season finale, as both Brendan Smith and Kaapo Kakko joined the press box. In turn, Tarmo Reunanen returned to the line up and new forward Justin Richards made his NHL debut today. Of note, Chris Kreider, who was “day-to-day”, like everyone else on the IR, didn’t play either.

In addition, DQ gave Keith Kinkaid the start today, which was pretty much a “thank you for your service” type of start, as Kinkaid was reliable when the Rangers needed him earlier this season. While I thought Georgiev would get one more game, I was fine with this and I thought this was a classy move by DQ. I’m sure Kinkaid won’t forget this.

I’ll talk about this more next week, but with the Seattle expansion draft set for July, I saw some people suggesting that the Rangers should protect Kinkaid, rather than Georgiev. While I’m not ruling that out, as it does make sense cap-wise, I just don’t see it happening. In my opinion, while you can argue that Kinkaid and Georgiev had equal seasons, where Georgiev was paid over two times the amount than what Kinkaid earned; it’s Georgiev that still has the better upside. Again, more on this next week.

With Kinkaid in the barrel, here was your line-up and defensive pairings for this contest:

Photo Credit: M$GN
Photo Credit: M$GN

At this time, let’s go to the last gambling segment of this season, where like the Rangers themselves, I close out with a win!

While I expected the Rangers to get their behinds reddened in this game, and I’m glad I was wrong about that, the only thing that matters here is the over-under! With nine total goals scored, the over hit. I now conclude this season with an over-under win-loss record of 23-30-3 – my worst season and my first losing season yet! Again, the Rangers inconsistency issues just buried my over-under predictions this season!

BOX SCORE time.

The following information and graphics come from the new world-wide leader in NHL coverage, in ESPN.com.

SCORING:

PENALTIES:

GOALIES:

NYR
SA
GA
SV
SV%
ESSV
PPSV
SHSV
SOSA
SOS
TOI
PIM
9 2 7 .778 6 0 1 0 0 11:10 0
30 2 28 .933 26 0 2 0 0 48:50 0

 

BOS
SA
GA
SV
SV%
ESSV
PPSV
SHSV
SOSA
SOS
TOI
PIM
23 5 18 .783 13 3 2 0 0 58:47 0

TEAM STATS: (Notice the SOG, face-offs and blocked shots here, which tells the story of this game.)


Joe Micheletti scared me today – he had a 45 minute stretch during this broadcast, without saying the word FABULOUS! By the end of the broadcast, Micheletti hit double-digits in his usage of “FABULOUS!” Whew!

This was actually the most newsworthy M$GN pregame show of the season, as we had an interview with Chris Drury on here, which both Steve Vagistat and John Giannnone conducted. However, before getting to that, Vally opened this broadcast by saying that this was a great season for the Rangers. I don’t know what rainbow dust he was sniffing when he said that, especially after the firings of JD and Gorton. If things were so great, JD and Gorton would still be employed.

And yeah – I get that many people, both Ranger fans and non-Ranger fans alike, didn’t have the Rangers penciled in for the playoffs this season, but as I’ll get into and in-depth next week – there are so many “what if’s” from this season, including the team’s inability to win the majority of their one goal games, their poor starts, Mika Zibanejad, etc, where really, this team very easily could’ve been a playoff team. Yes, that’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

In a broadcast that felt like everyone was sucking up to Chris Drury and James Dolan, and where in the final minutes of the game, Joe Micheletti called out Steve Vagistat for being an ass-kisser and begging for a front office job; Vally spent a few minutes telling us how great Mika has been since March 17th.

As discussed 7866785675 times already on this site, Vally uses that March 17th date because that was the 9-0 game over Philly. Not mentioned once in all of Vally’s praise for Mika, which is ironic since Vally is stat guy, is how all of Mika’s numbers were boosted in the games against Philly, Buffalo and New Jersey and how Mika rarely did anything against the playoff teams of the division. And that’s not hating, that’s stating. (And yes, I’m aware Mika showed up today, but this was a rarity and not the norm for him this season.)

The ever-annoying Vagistat, who not only plugged his crappy company one last time during this broadcast, would then also bring up his legendary Hall of Fame 46 game career no less than ten times today. I’m not making that up. I feel like we’ve heard about each of Vally’s 46 career games this season, except for one – the ten goals allowed game against Dallas. And wouldn’t you know, I have talked about this game in-depth before. Since Vally omits this game, when repeatedly talking about his Vezinaesque career, you can read about that majestic game here: https://bluecollarblueshirts.com/32920/

Funny enough, the Rangers defense wasn’t so hot in this game either!

After bombarding us with his bullshit, Vally sucked up to Drury so hard, that it would take a massive Taco Bell induced fart, for Drury to blow Vally’s head out of his ass. That’s why I was laughing hysterically when Micheletti was calling Vally out for being a stooge during the final minutes of this game! While Micheletti was going for a laugh, it did sound like he was half-serious about this too, even going as far to recap what a kiss-ass Vally was to Sam Rosen.

As far as Drury’s interview went, here were the highlights:

— Drury said he was finally able to catch his breath and reiterated how important JD and Gorton were to him. Throughout all of this, Drury continues to praise JD and Gorton in every interview.

— Drury said coaching the team earlier in the season, when we had the DQ-19 stuff, was a great experience. Vally and Giannone didn’t ask Drury is if this was the time when Dolan tipped him off about what was to come.

— Drury said the last two weeks were bad for the Rangers, mentioning that the Jacob Trouba injury started off a litany of bad news for the Rangers.

— Vally got on his knees and asked Drury to tell everyone that Drury once played with Vally. This all felt like “name-dropping”.

— As far as this off-season goes, Drury said he had to break down the entire roster and see who fits what role moving forward.

— Vally, who hasn’t worn his wedding ring for over a year, and has been subject to some Artie Lange inspired humor about this, twice mentioned that he was married to a female. I don’t know what that had to do with anything – I just thought it was interesting that Vally brought up that he was married to a woman, because that had nothing to do with the interview. Think about it. When do you ever see an interviewer mention their marital status to their interviewee? It’s not like Giannone talked about his wife to Drury either. Just sayin’!

— Vally then told Drury, that when he found out that Drury was getting the reins, that Vally told his wife that the Rangers are going to start winning again. This was absolutely a burial of JD and Gorton here, no doubt about it. Seriously, I’m surprised that Sam Rosen didn’t walk across the studio and smack Vally’s jaw loose. As mentioned, Micheletti would dig in on Vally throughout the broadcast, and I wonder if these comments led to that. Vally was also fist-pumping like a cheer-leader when Drury responded to his questions. If you’re a JD fan, and many of you are, I thought Vally was a complete asshole here. I get that Drury is his boy, but to bury JD was off-putting.

— Drury said there were no short-cuts with his new roles and said you have to be the first person in the building in the morning and the last person to leave it at night. This reminded me of George Costanza in his role with the Yankees, but I get what Drury meant here – and he was serious about it.

— Drury said Glen Sather had done it all. No one asked Drury if winning the Cup with the Rangers was excluded from that proclamation.

— Vally then finger-blasted his five-hole and jumped for joy, saying that he knows that Drury loves analytics. Drury did confirm this and mentioned that he and Vally have talked in private about analytics. Vally was talking here like a kid meeting a mall Santa Claus for the first time. And as Micheletti would later say, it did feel like Vally was giving his resume to Drury during all of this too.

All in all, I thought Drury came off well, although I think it would’ve been more interesting if Sam Rosen was asking the questions here.

Speaking of Sam Rosen, he sounded much better today than he did on Thursday.

In addition, throughout the broadcast, both Sam and Joe did a good job of thanking the fans and they seemed genuine while doing so. You can feel that they are just as disappointed as any Ranger fan, in regards to this season now being over. In a weird way, I felt connected to them as they were recapping the end of this season. I’ve never felt this way before, but for whatever reason, I did feel a bond with them at the end of their time on the broadcast. As I said, they just felt genuine about all of this, rather than the goofball and pandering shit you get out of Vally and John “I have to plug 78678786786879 gambling outfits and advertisers” Giannone.

And lastly, while wrapping up on the M$GN crew, we had the following:

— Sam Rosen making a mistake and not knowing if a Ranger scored or not. The former was a regular staple out of Rosen this season, where yes, at times you can blame these mistakes on Rosen watching these games off of a screen.

— Joe Micheletti saying FABULOUS over ten times.

— Vally mentioning his career, his crappy company and where you now hope that Ryan Callahan replaces him full-time. I somewhat hope Drury hires Vally, if only to get him off of these broadcasts.

I think that’s enough about the broadcast for one last time this season! Let’s get into the game!


Keith Kinkaid had a remarkable game, prior to his injury which occurred in the third period. Of note, with Kinkaid playing great, the second Sam Rosen mentioned that Kinkaid had a shut-out going, I knew the Bruins would soon change that.

It was apparent right away, that the Rangers had much more pep in their step today, when compared to the game from Thursday night. After having 7 SOG through two periods on Thursday, the Rangers offense was much better in this game. While the Rangers did ultimately finish with 23 SOG today, compared to the 15 SOG the Rangers had on Thursday; the Rangers did a much better job of forechecking and crossing the Boston blue line.

You really had to be happy with what you saw early on and throughout, because here you had all these no-name Rangers (well we know who they are, the casual fan wouldn’t) and they gave it their all against a Stanley Cup contender. As mentioned earlier, Justin Richards really impressed me, because you noticed him on all of his shifts, which is not something you could say about ANY Ranger from Thursday night.

Mika Zibanejad, who had another losing record at the dot tonight, only winning 7 of 17 face-offs, won the first face-off of the game. Right away, and is usually is the case, it would be the Rangers goalie who would be tasked to come up with a save, and two at that, as Kinkaid stopped Carlo and Krejci. Kinkaid would continue his impressive performance throughout the contest, where he really followed up on the shut-out that he logged the last time he started against this Boston team.

Buchnevich, who had a yo-yo game, where at the end of it, he was more good than bad, would get a great pass from Lafreniere, but couldn’t handle it. If he had, it could’ve very easily been 1-0, good guys. On the next Rangers shift, Strome hit a post, on a shot which completely baffled Rask, as Rask didn’t see the shot, nor knew where the puck was after hitting the iron.

Speaking of people having a yo-yo game, where at the end of it, he was more good than bad; K’Andre Miller was stripped by Brad Marchand, only for Adam Fox to deny Marchand of what could’ve been a goal. We all know that the Norris voters should take defensive ability into account, but usually, it are the defensemen with offensive stats that win this award. Fox went pointless during these last few games, but it should be mentioned that he continued to wreak havoc against opposing offenses. In this first period alone, Fox broke up four scoring chances and within the first ten minutes of action.

Yes I’m biased, but I think Fox should win the Norris. If he doesn’t, it’s because he’s not on a playoff team. Photo Credit: M$GN

/Start Rant:

In something that irked me, the #CadillacTrivia question was “who led the Rangers in goal scoring for four or more consecutive seasons?” For the 30th time this season, I had the answer first (Barry Horowitz pat on the back here) and the answer was Bill Cook. When Sam and Joe eventually answered the question wrongly, they acted like they had no clue who Bill Cook was – which probably is also true for the majority of the fan base.

As you know by my 78678789696 rants about this, where I’m now doing a book about this as well; it’s just a Father Finking disgrace that Bill Cook’s #5 isn’t hanging in the rafters of M$G. It’s even more of a disgrace, that M$G has banners for a serial drunk driver and a pot-smoking hippie band, all while ignoring one of the greatest Rangers of all-time, if not the greatest. (I’d argue for Frank Boucher here, because of his legacy and tenure, but Bill Cook was arguably better on the ice. Either way, the whole “Bread Line” belongs in the rafters.)

Rant over!

With 8:06 remaining in the period, Matt Grzelcyk held Barron, which gave the Rangers the first power-play of the game. Rask would make two saves on Mika during this NYR PP, and Mika would’ve had a third GOOD LOOK, had Buchnevich not over-muscled a pass to him. While the Rangers didn’t score here, at least this power-play looked much better than the power-plays we’ve seen during the last few games.

As the period wound down, both Gettinger and Richards had a shift where they looked solid while forechecking. With Kinkaid racking saves, we were shown a shot of the UMASS team, who were cheering on Zac Jones. While this was going on, Miller made a great play on Pastrnak, as Miller tied him up and prevented a Bruins scoring chance.

With 27.9 seconds remaining in the frame, Barron was boxed for tripping, after an accidental knee-to-knee hit on Taylor Hall. Of note, the refs seemed hesitant to call this, as their call was delayed and after Hall was begging for a call.

After one period, even though the game was scoreless, the Rangers displayed a great effort, especially considering all of the circumstances.


For all of my silly jokes, I’m going to miss not seeing these two for five months! Photo Credit: M$GN

After our customary comment of, “SECOND PERIOD, WHAT DO YOU LOOK FOR HERE JOE?”, <a fabulous tee-time Sam!> the Bruins remained on the power-play. For some reason, Boston didn’t use their PP1 unit during this, perhaps taking the Rangers for granted. Had the Bruins scored here, who knows if the final result would’ve changed?

Kinkaid not only showcased himself to Seattle here, but he also made an argument for the Rangers to retain him, as Kinkaid stood on his head after the Rangers successful PK. After losing his stick, Kinkaid made two saves and froze the puck. With 16:20 remaining, Kinkaid made a flurry of saves, three in all, and within a time-span of five seconds, to keep the game scoreless.

As it looked like this game would become a goaltender’s duel, at the 6:21 mark of the period, this happened:

1-0, GOOD GUYS! This was a great example of how good things happen when you shoot the puck, as Miller flicked a shot from the blue line, and somehow, this seeing eye puck beat the screened Tuukka Rask. On Rask, who was returning from injury today; this game would wind up as a horrid performance for him. Who knows, the Bruins may have to rely on Jeremy Swayman during the playoffs, ala Jordan Binnington (STL) or Matt Murray (PIT).

Of note, with the assist here, Richards gets his first NHL point in his first NHL game.

As Sam and Joe read poetry praising how great Miller was, and as Micheletti recapped every member in the family tree of Richards, Pastrnak hit a cross bar. On the next Boston possession, DeBrusk split Bitetto and Reunanen, but Kinkaid made the save.

As Kinkaid continued to roll, where he was even smiling while making saves, Mika hooked Pastrnak with 5:56 to go in the period. This was a good penalty to take, as it perhaps saved a goal and kept Kinkaid’s shut-out alive.

The Rangers, who threw together a mix-mashed PK on the ice here, was great, with Kevin Rooney even getting a SOG during this. However, after getting the kill, with 1:48 remaining in the period, Nick Ritchie scored after a rebound. On this goal, it looked like Kinkaid thought he made a save on a shot from the blue line and didn’t realize that he gave up a rebound. Ritchie was in the right place at the right time here.

At the end of the period, just like the first period, we remained tied, this time at 1-1. Of note, Boston was out-shooting the Rangers 27-12 here and it was Kinkaid who kept the Rangers alive. Boston had to be shell-shocked a bit.


It feels like the Rangers tweeted this out just the other day. Now here on 5/8, Kravtsov has played in 20 NHL games. Photo Credit: NYR

As mentioned, in a game that looked like it was a goaltender’s duel, this third period would produce seven goals in total, with the Rangers winning this period 4-3.

21 seconds into the period, Pavel Buchnevich made a brutal turnover to Marchand and Marchand easily dished the puck to Pastrnak. 2-1 bad guys. This goal was 100% on Buchnevich and not on Kinkaid. This was another early goal allowed by the Rangers this season as well.

On the other end, Rask would continue to deny Buchnevich and Mika. Then, in another solid shift out of Richards, he forced a turnover on Hall in the NYR d-zone, raced up ice, and put a SOG himself. Again, I was impressed with Richards today, but yeah, I don’t know what his long-lasting future is with the club.

In some complete craziness, Mika would find himself wide-open, but opted to pass to Buchnevich for a one-timer. Rask then put on his ski-mask and made a robbery of a save on Buchnevich. Then, on the Rangers next possession, this duo flip-flopped roles, as Buchnevich fed Mika and this time, Mika cashed in on this one-timer. 2-2 and with 14:38 remaining in regulation. I was shocked, as Mika rarely scores against good teams!

2:04 after Mika’s goal, Alexis Lafreniere regained the lead for the Rangers:

3-2, GOOD GUYS! I would have to go back and count, but I think this was Lafreniere’s 6th or 7th goal from the doorstep and another goal where Lafreniere shows that he isn’t scared of contact. And hey, look at Lafreniere finding the top part of the net. That’s pure skill, especially when you have everyone gunning for you.

After Lafreniere’s goal, and with 11:10 to go, Keith Kinkaid suffered a non-contact injury, after making a play on Pastrnak. I don’t think this injury was too serious, as Kinkaid was tweeting and thanking the fans after this game. However, this injury was serious enough to end his day in net, as CZAR IGOR took over the net for the final 11:10.

And oh, while on Lafreniere, it also feels like that Lafreniere’s positive energy is contagious, as just 2:10 after his goal, Kravtsov joined the party:

4-2, GOOD GUYS, as Kravtsov picks up his second career goal, and with only 10:24 to go in the period. This was great news for Kinkaid, as it looked like he would get the win. That wouldn’t be the case and that’s a shame.

As Micheletti was talking about Vally kissing Drury’s ass, with 6:43 to go, Bitetto was boxed for holding. With 5:52 to go, Marchand scored, where it looked like a high stick. 4-3, good guys. For some reason, DQ didn’t use his challenge here, where I’m assuming that he didn’t want to risk losing the challenge and give Boston another power-play.

As we got past the FOXWOODS final five mark of the game and neared two minute warning territory, the Bruins would ice the puck with 2:11 to go. Mika would win this crucial face-off, and with 1:53 remaining, and after another assist from Buchnevich, Mika scored. 5-3 GOOD GUYS, and this game looked like it was over. Not so fast.

Thirty seconds after Mika’s second goal, and with most Ranger fans hoping for Igor to seal the deal with an empty netter himself; the Bruins, now on a 6 x 5 attack and with Rask on the bench, saw Bergeron score. 5-4. This goal was big, not only because the Bruins were now within one goal again, but because it now put Igor on the hook for a win or a loss. This is some of the silliness in the NHL, but it is what it is. Kinkaid has a monster game, but Igor, who didn’t look great (and he did come into this game cold) escapes with a “W” on his record. Again, it is what it is.

Both Rooney and Buchnevich would miss an empty net in the final 60 seconds of this game, but as the final horn went off, the score remained 5-4, GOOD GUYS, thus giving the Rangers both a moral and real victory.


With the season now over, it’s now up to Drury to decide if DQ joins Gorton and JD out the door. Photo Credit: NYR

As the blog header photo tells you – “and that’s that.” What comes next will be interesting, because just like this season itself, I expect a crazy off-season, where plenty of big news will be broken.

While the Rangers are done for this 2021 season, I will not be. As talked about earlier, I’ll have plenty of stuff next week, in recapping the end of this season. I also expect the DQ decision to be made sometime next week too.

Once the Rangers news slows down, I’ll start talking about the NHL playoffs, do a prediction blog and all of that other happy horseshit. I’ll also have DeLorean and book review blogs for you too. Plus, I’m usually pretty good at filling white monitor space with content for you!

Come the completion of the NHL Playoffs, we have the two drafts, in both the Seattle expansion draft and the 2021 NHL draft. In other words, I’m not going anywhere and will continue to post material throughout the off-season. I think I should have 2-3 blogs up a week during this off-season, but there will come a time where I’ll slow down, as I try to finish my book.

And while this might sound “Vallyish” and sappy, thanks to all of you guys for giving me your clicks and time this season. Starting from September 2020, (when the Rangers moved on from both Lundqvist and Staal) to today, this site did record traffic. While I’m never concerned about site traffic (if I were, I’d have ads and spyware all over this site, like the other Ranger blogs/sites that are out there and I’d also break up these manifestos into 736478963786389 100 word blogs) it’s nice to see that people care about what some bozo from Long Island has to say about the Rangers.


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


Let’s hope for a normal 2021-2022 season, where M$G is open at full capacity and with a full 82 game slate.

I’ll be back Monday or Tuesday night, as I review the season, do the report card, preview the off-season and everything else.

Stay FABULOUS my friends.

Until then, and as always here, thanks for reading and…

LET’S GO RANGERS!

Sean McCaffrey

BULLSMC@aol.com

@NYCTHEMIC on Tweeter

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28 thoughts on “NYR/BOS 5/8 Review: Rangers Close Crazy Season on a High Note; Have a Game To Be Proud About, Kids Shine; Fat Cats Dine, Lafreniere’s Positive Energy, Richards Maximizes Minutes, The Future of DQ, Drury Interview, Kinkaid Stars But It’s a Win for the CZAR, Insufferable M$GN Broadcasters; Vally vs Micheletti, JD Speaks Out, Seattle Draft, Moving Forward & More

      1. I think DQ will get another year too
        If Messier became coach I would take a wait and see attitude because who knows, maybe he would be great but Messier would be my last choice.
        If they got Messier right after the letter and it was a “we will build your team your way” type deal then I would be ok with that but you cant go to Messier in the middle of a rebuild because that would give him an excuse to take a wrecking ball to the roster if things don’t work out……..not my kind of players..
        When everything failed in Vancouver Messier finally blamed……….the ice……not my kind of coach, not my kind of GM, not my kind of players and not my kind of ice.

        heh

        1. You’re on record – you don’t want Messier. I’m still 50/50 on what happens with DQ, but think Torts is more likely than Messier anyway.

          1. As you have your stiffy for Hank, I have my stiffy for Messier!

            heh

            Its probably a moot point anyway because unless Dolan insists on it Drury is never going to hire Messier because nobody hires a guy who is instantly going to be angling for their own job………..maybe Sather never wanted Messier for the exact same reason.

            I saw only a few calls on social media to hire Messier, I guess from the oldtimers

            It used to be whenever there was talk of a coaching or management change there would always be a large group screaming we gotta get Messier!

            I always thought…….Why?

            I guess the millennial fans are not that connected to Messier and for them Messier is as distant a Ranger figure as Brad Park or Giacomin

            Damn, Messier did not even wait until JD and Gorton got a chance to clean out their desk’s before going on radio to campaign for their jobs

            That’s Messier, always a class act.

            I like how Messier insisted in his contract with Vancouver that he get Wayne Maki’s old number #11 which everyone knew was unofficially retired, retired no doubt with all the boo hooing and “he will always be in our hearts” pomp and circumstance usually entailed in such things……..they should have added “he will always be in our hearts …well at least until some egomaniac gets here and demands we forget him”

            Messier was great on the ice but off the ice he has a lot of irritating character flaws.

          2. Lundqvist wouldn’t even be worthy of shining Messier’s skates!

            The “Rangers need to hire Messier” stuff isn’t news, that’s been going on ever since the lockout was over.

            You’re right, Messier’s NYR peak is now nearly 30 years ago, and in that time, most of the social media fans weren’t alive for the core four of 1994, and that’s why they think Lundqvist is the greatest thing ever.

            In defense of the older fans/old-timers who want Messier, that’s just the way it was back then, where you’d see big stars as head coaches.

            Did you read that Messier book review I did I think a year or two ago? Messier got KILLLLLLLLLED for taking Maki’s number like you said. In today’s social media world, Canuck fans would’ve tried to cancel him!

  1. Thanks for another highly entertaining season and of course those 85736378589685734 hilarious photo shops. I had high hopes for some beach reading this summer but it sounds like your History of the Rangers won’t be hitting the NY Times Best Seller List until later this year. Alas, er, “Sad.” An off season anticipated to be filled with more than the usual Rangers news content (with the attendant BCBS analysis) will have to suffice. Our unlimited data plan will come in handy while I sit under the umbrella.

    Was it just my hangover from the Caps (and Islanders) nonsense, or did the Bruins seem to play a much less physical game than we might have been used to seeing up there??

    Enjoy the summer.

    Happy Mother’s Day to all Hockey Moms.

    1. The first two periods were pretty boring. The third period turned into old time farm pond hockey and it was lot of fun.

    2. When I started the book, I figured 250-300 pages. Now it’s at 550 and I have to trim it down, do my own proof reading, get it to the editor and all that. Plus I have to license some photos, so like AV says – “it’s a pro-cess.”

      The unlimited data line cracked me up.

      I just think Boston was trying out new things at times, such as not even using their first PP1 unit.

  2. Thank you Sean for your fabulous blog this season.This and the BSU show gives me in Finland so much more fan insight of what is going on since we have no msg shows or anything else in our broadcast. Last Washington game during intermission Joe said to Sam that as early as next season this team might take off. Sam replied “But we won’t be here to see it”. So that might happen if it was a mistake that it aired in the international broadcast.

    1. Thanks Kim. What’s on your broadcast just the puck drop to the final horn? Sam led you to believe he was coming back on the postgame show.

  3. I wonder where we are in the draft and if we have any shot at another lottery ball miracle?

    Time to polish up Steven MacDonald’s badge for another go?

    I guess the next games for some Rangers will be in the Worlds that is if the pro’s are going to them

    I’d like to see Fox playing on Team USA.

    1. I’d imagine a middle of the pack draft pick, 13-15, but who knows, maybe a miracle. That said, this is the most unpredictable draft in some time.

      They’re not going to to the Worlds and I don’t blame them. More on this on the next blog.

  4. Torts is on the market.
    Torts feels like been there done that but who knows, he at least would be a candidate with experience if the Rangers were to make a coaching change.

    When does the new season start!?

    All this waiting is driving me to drink.

  5. Well if they are trading for Eichel I would say DQ definitely stays.

    You have to wonder what the problem is in Buffalo/

    https://buffalonews.com/sports/sabres/sabres-notebook-college-reunion-for-eichel-rodrigues-against-rangers-david-quinn/article_240146ab-d936-532a-b642-0705c15d448e.html

    Looks like most of the Rangers wont be playing in the Worlds, too bad but I cant say I blame them, Trouba and Kreider are banged up and Miller needs a rest

    Have not heard if Fox will play.

    1. Fox said no to the Worlds too, according to Brooks.

      I feel Eichel gets moved this off-season and wouldn’t shock me if it was to NYR, Dolan loves sexy new toys.

      1. I wonder what Eichel’s reputation is like in the locker room but usually you don’t hear about that until the “tell all” books come out 20 years later.

        1. I would listen to everything I hear, but not believe everything I hear. Look at Hall in Boston right now. Sometimes players just need to get out of a bad environment.

  6. There is nothing of pre-, post-, or midgame shows. The broadcast just starts usually mid national anthem and during intermission there is just a stillcam shot with a lot of soundtesting. Also usually showing the player who coming for interview and “onetwo can you hear me?” “thanks for doing this and I still owe you for last time” and then showing them just waiting for their segment.

    1. Thanks for telling me this, I never knew how these games came off internationally. Do you see the normal intermission segments like we do?

  7. no, just the sound testing and player interviews that uses rink side equipment. No Vagistat or any studio stuff.

  8. Thank you for all of your blogs. Besides entertaining and definitely funny, I also have learned a lot about hockey, so also thank you for that. I look forward to your upcoming blogs, but I also was so sad after watching the last game on Saturday and I agree, the announcers seemed truly sad. I think because we were so close to the playoffs. Anyway, cannot wait till next season starts and have a great summer.

    1. Thanks barbara. I’ll be posting stuff here, but it’s obviously not the same when the season is in full swing. Enjoy the summer and what should be a busy off-season

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