Posts Tagged ‘New York Rangers

30
Oct
08

Shanahan To Take Offers

This has kind of confused me for the greater part of the last 5 months or so. I thought going into the off-season that Brendan Shanahan would be one of the more sought after Free Agents on the market. At first I was shocked that he wasn’t getting at least a couple of offers from around the league, but then I found out about his love affair with Slather, and that he wouldn’t be taking any offers from any other teams but the New York Rangers, yet nothing came…

Fast forward to training camps, when a lot of teams were said to be looking for that offensive player with leadership qualities (read Mats Sundin). Now, I am in no way comparing Shanahan to Sundin, but Shanahan is right up there in my opinion with offensive abilities. Shanahan can’t take control of the game like Sundin can or anything, but on the power-play, this is lethal on the off wing. The Habs went out and traded for Robert Lang almost for that exact reason, I would imagine they would have rather of had Shanny.

It wasn’t until today that Shanny told his agent that he would be willing to listen to other offers. Seriously Brendan? It took you this long to realize that the Rangers weren’t going to sign you? You had to wait until an 8th of the season was gone to entertain other offers? Wow. Well whatever, Shanahan will be signed within one or two weeks. I imagine some teams with the salary cap room would be eager to jump on him, like say… Vancouver?

28
Oct
08

Thrashers Suck!

Okay, no big secret here, but the Thrashers are awful.  Not only because they just finished their latest masterpiece, a 7-0 loss to the Flyers (who are insanely hot as of late) but because they’ve pretty much always been bad.

Since their inception to the NHL, the Thrashers have qualified for the Stanley Cup play-offs, which remarkably is one more time than the Columbus Blue Jackets (which is a story for another day). Oh by the way, the Thrashers were subsequently swept by the Rangers, so they have just as many play-off wins as the Jackets. It’s not only their stats that make them terrible, but some of the players they’ve brought in. I mean seriously, Patrik Stefan? First Overall? And the fact that they’ve had 7 Top 10 picks in the last 10 years only 3 of which are currently on the roster.

And then there’s the ownership. The initial owners, Time Warner last only 6 years, selling the franchise to a group called Atlanta Spirit in 2003. Not to mention their attendance. In an article published by the Globe and Mail in March of 2007, it was said that the Thrashers held the honour for giving the most tickets away. “The league’s numbers show the Thrashers gave away an average of 2,827 tickets a game in their first 25 home games.” Which just happens to be up…. 840% from the year before.

The only other thing I want to mention…these terrible jerseys from a few years ago. Oh… and the Thrashers suck.

23
Apr
08

NHL Play-Offs: Round Two

Alright, so as I’ve found out, doing this, following the post-season, and writing finals all at the same time is harder then I thought, but with one final to go… I should be able to balance it out better. Onto the play-offs!

First Round Review

  • Eastern Conference
    • MON vs. BOS: I chose Montreal in 5, and figured they would walk right through this series… MON took it in 7 and Price had two bad games, which I think are outshined by his two shut-outs.
    • PIT vs. OTT: I called Pittsburgh in 6, claiming that the Sens were the biggest chokers in recent history… well I was right, the Sens are big chokers… bigger then I thought they were. PIT swept.
    • WAS vs. PHI: I picked Washington in 7, and they were one shot away from making that happen, but the Flyers persevered in 7.
    • NJ vs. NYR: I really thought Brodeur would carry the Devils through when I picked them in 6, didn’t really think that NYR would for the most part, manhandle the Devils in 5.
  • Western Conference
    • DET vs. NAS: I underestimated Ellis in this when I picked the Wings to sweep the Preds, but other than one wicked bounce… Ellis was spectacular,  but wasn’t enough to get the Preds through as they lost in 6.
    • SJ vs. CGY: I picked the Sharks in 7, and I feel as though they are lucky to have pulled it out after blowing a 3-0 lead in Game 3. But they did, and won in 7.
    • MIN vs. COL: I picked this one completely by guessing, and was biased because my Dad’s team are the Avs, so I chose them in 6, and low and behold, they won in 6.
    • ANA vs. DAL: I really thought that the experience of the Ducks would make it impossible for the Stars to win when I picked Ducks in 5… turns out Dallas won in 6, and the Ducks never had a chance!

So in the end, I finished with a 5-3 record and I called 2 of the 5 in the correct number of games. Not bad… but not good at the same time, hopefully the second round is better for me.

Second Round Predictions

  • Eastern Conference
    • MON vs. PHI: While Briere hauled ass in the 1st Round, he wasn’t playing against Komisarek, Markov, & Price. I expect his production to stall, and I believe the Habs too much depth and speed for the Flyers to handle. Canadiens in 6.
    • PIT vs. NYR: I was pulling for the Pens vs. Caps, because that would have just been epic, but now this. This is a completely different match-up for the Rangers, and while I under estimated their depth last round, I seriously doubt that they can bring it when they are forced to play defensively. Pittsburgh in 7.
  • Western Conference
    • DET vs. COL: Let’s call this one the “Senior Men’s Cup”. Colorado’s average age is 26.7 while the Wings clock in at 28.2; two of the oldest teams in the league. Still though, I think the wings pull it off and Theodore can’t keep playing like this… can he? Detroit in 6.
    • SJ vs. DAL: The Sharks could be tired after the physical series with the Flames, and the Stars disposed of the Ducks with ease. The Stars showed that they will not be intimidated and that they can apparently handle anything. Dallas in 7.

So there you have it, I am looking for a Montreal/Pittsburgh Eastern Final, and a Detroit/Dallas Western Final. Now I have to go back to studying.

27
Jan
08

NHL to Open 08-09 Season In Europe

mysteryalaska3comp.jpg

Another one of the league’s worst kept secrets was revealed yesterday when they announced that the Ottawa Senators, Tampa Bay Lighting, New York Rangers, and the Pittsburgh Penguins would head across the pond to open the season.

The move did come with some controversy. Paul Kelly, the NHLPA Executive Director told the media that “the NHL put the cart before the horse.” What he means, is that there were still some issues that needed to be ironed out, and that the players had yet to agree to everything that the trip entails. For the most part, was the announcement that the Rangers would play in the Victoria Cup, and tourney that pits the European Champions to play against the Rangers.

I agree with the NHLPA on this one. The NHL should hold back on these kinds of things until the players agree to them, because lets face it, the players are the ones that are going over there and putting on a show. They are going over and risking their bodies, their reputation, and potentially their careers to give the Europeans the chance to see NHL teams live.

This again reminds me of a good ol’ flick called Mystery, Alaska. For those of you who haven’t seen it, some team in Mystery, Alaska gets a story published about them in Sports Illustrated, where the writer claims they could rival any team in the NHL. So of all the teams in the league, the New York Rangers are scheduled to come to town, and play outdoors against the Mystery team, but not before the NHLPA steps in because the players don’t want to go… sounds familiar right?

24
Jan
08

Rangers to Retire Brian Leetch’s #2

leetch0524.jpg

The New York Rangers will send Brian Leetch’s number 2 to the rafters. The ceremony will talk place before the puck drop tonight when the Rangers face the Kovalchukless Thrashers at MSG.

This will mark only the 5th Ranger number to be retired, which is pretty impressive considering the team has been around since 1926.

Leetch amassed quite the career, winning the Conn Smythe Trophy in 1994, and finishing with 1, 028 points, 981 of which were scored during his tenure with the Rangers. Those 981 points place him at second all-time in points with the Rangers, second in games played, and first in assists with 741.

Leetch was also named to the All-Star team 10 times, and won the Norris Trophy twice as the NHL’s top blue-liner.

Congrats to Brian Leetch, he is a man that truly deserves to have his number retired, and to be honoured by such a historic organization. And to know more about the legend that is Brian Leetch, click here.

23
Jan
08

Kovalchuk’s Hit On Rozsival Deserves Suspension

***NOTE: This was actually written before the suspension was handed out***

First things first I guess, you may as well check out the hit so here it is.

This is a dirty hit, that is from behind, and it is without question a hit that deserves a suspension. It is clearly from behind, and Michal Rozsival (New York Rangers) did not turn, his back was always to the play. To make it worse, Ilya Kovalchuk (Atlanta Thrashers) jumped. And when I say jump, I mean it he might as well tried to leap-frog him. Looking at the reply, it almost looks like he gets himself about a foot off the ice. Kovalchuk received a 5 minute major and was also given a game misconduct. So dirty hit, with a massive charge, attempt to injure… suspension for sure, right?

Here is why I don’t think he will get suspended, and if he does, it will be one game at the most. Rozsival was not hurt on the play. He returned to the game after the first intermission once he was checked out by team doctors. The other main reason, is that Kovalchuk is a star player, who is the middle of a scoring race. The one thing the NHL does not want to do, is remove a star player, with the electricity that Kovalchuk has, from the game for a long period of time. Especially in a non-hockey market. You wouldn’t want those ratings to suck anymore right.

The other thing that creeps into my mind… is that this hit is similar to Randy Jones’ (Philadelphia Flyers) hit on Patrice Bergeron (Boston Bruins). Now Bergeron is out for the season, and Jones only got 2 games! No way in hell Kovalchuk gets anymore then that!

18
Jan
08

Have Sabres Lost 10 In A Row??

Last night, the New York Rangers handed the Buffalo Sabres lost their tenth game in a row, putting them at a record of 19-19-6. Grade 4 math would show that 10 games ago, the Sabres would have been 19-9-6 right?Wrong!

In, fact they were 19-14-1. Allow to be frank, the points system in the NHL is fucking stupid. Out of a possible 20 points, the Sabres have gotten 5, yet they’ve lost 10 in a row. Benny Ercolani, the NHL’s chief stat guy says it’s not even a losing streak, “It’s a winless streak because some of those games didn’t go in the loss column.”

Ugh! So technical! I hate the fact that if a game goes into extra time, the team that ends up winning only gets an extra point, and the team that loses, gets one less point then a team that wins in regulation. I think that a team that wins in regulation should get 3 points, win in overtime or shoot-out earns 2 point, a loss in over-time or shoot-out gets 1 point, and if you loss in regulation, well you sucked tonight, no points.

10 seasons ago, Ottawa and San Jose were able to sneak into play-offs by finishing in 8th place in their respective conference. Ottawa had 83 points, while San Jose finished with 78 points. Last season, the New York Islanders and the Flames sneaked in with 92 points and 96 points respectively.

Where did those extra 27 points come from? The stupid extra points that the NHL gives out points as if they were herpes at a Dutch sex shop, and no one likes those.




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