Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Boys In Blue Beat Brodeur, NYR 3, NJ Devils 2

 It keeps looking better.

In the opening minutes of the game last night, the Devils scored on the Rangers forcing NYR Coach John Tortorella to use his only timeout.  "Sh*t or get off the team!" or something related was the message forcefully delivered by Torts as he proceeded to wake-up their lazy asses and send the right message back on the ice.

It worked.  We are 2-1.  Official recap here.

Both rookies Michael Del Zotto and Matt Gilroy changed the tone of the New York Rangers last night against the NJ Devils, both scoring one goal each and revitalizing the anemic power play.  So our top D-men are 19, 22 and 25 year olds.  Already there are improvements in the power play -- evidenced by a tighter passing, more confident looking unit, they were bound to begin scoring goals in this third game of the season.  It is entirely too early to compare these young D-men to other great Rangers defencemen -- in fact, it is taboo at this point, but with Michael Del Zotto bound to stay in the NHL having scored two goals in his first three NHL games, along with Matt Gilroy and his one goal, it does bring two potential candidates for the Calder Trophy into the thinking.  (on a side, the last time two rookie Rangers defensemen scored a goal each in the same game was 1990 by Miroslav Horava & Jeff Bloemberg)

Other obvious observations:  'The King" Lundqvist remains the best asset for the Rangers.  He was the true 'Rock' at the Prudential Center showing his nemesis Marty Brodeur a thing or two about rival goalkeeping.

Ales Kotalik scored the second goal in the first period on the power play, his first as a Ranger and the first reminder that he is actually wearing a Ranger's jersey.  Nice work Kotty.

But I am way ahead of myself...

Together with the potential talents of these young Ranger newbies, plus Marc Staal and a (hopefully improving) Dan Girardi, we are getting what the coach has been preaching - forward puck moving blueliners that are not afraid to shoot the puck.  That should motivate the play of invisible Dan Girardi, not-as-bad-as-usual Wade Redden and horrifyingly bad Michal Rozsival.   If not, things will change.  Torts is running this team, not Chris Drury and it shows; he won't have it any other way.  Even the Captain has been taken off power play duty, and the Coach rules.

Some don't like him.  I do.  He is good for the team.

Plus the Devils (albeit only 2 games in the season) are in last place in the Eastern Conference.  How cool is that? (someone chant M-A-R-T-Y very loudly right now).   Ironically, the Detroit Red Wings are in last place on the Western Conference side.   How that will change, but enjoy it while it lasts.

So without giving in to all their potential and yet believing in this new Rangers team, I have to admit --  I am starting to believe.  It is convincing enough that the youth of this new Blueshirt squad can and will motivate the veterans to 'step up' and improve the inconsistent crap we've all become so accustomed to supporting.  Today I am "Torts happy" and giving him credit for last night's win; motivating by fear, integrity and strong words.

Now a healthy Sean Avery is another story....



  1. You got give it up to Tort's for the timeout. Message was delivered, team responded. Perfect timing.

  2. Redden is an absolute waste. Every time he did something with the puck I was cussing at him.

    Maybe its because I missed the first few games on TV where everyone said he was doing well, but tonight, he was a liability not an asset.

    He gave the puck away, passed it to the other team, skated into the corner unabated and froze it before NJ took it away for a scoring chance.

    Tortorella will be playing the rookies in those spots before long.

  3. Good things happen when shots are taken from the point that are low, ON NET, and get through. Kotalik and Del Zotto did both in yesterday's game and showed positive results.

    I noticed that Girardi has been more on target this season as well.

    The Rangers have opportunistic scorers -- Drury, Gaborik, Higgins, Avery -- that can thrive in this type of set-up.

  4. I think Higgins is pressing already and trying to do too much with the puck. He seemed more relaxed in camp and not making as many fundamental gaffes.

    Also nice to know that even with Avery out, Cally stepped up and fell on Brodeur and kept the tradition going. lol..


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