Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Blind Aggression No Match for Puck Possession

Well Ranger fans,

With everyone wondering whether or not the team would be worn out of the road trip, the Rangers surprised everyone, starting the game with an up-tempo aggressive checking style. But like a an arrow without feathers, you're not hitting anything if you can't keep it straight.

Read the official recap here.

Speaking of misses,despite the energy brought by the team and feisty style, there was an obscene amount of Ranger shots (when being taken) that were deflected. A large percentage of the non-deflected shots still went wide of the net. We were a team hell bent on showing off our brass b@lls. While we darted in random directions, chipping pucks and then chasing them down .. only to work the puck around the boards trying to buy time for a shot... our opponents followed and waited for a mistake... We didn't disappoint them as we were caught deep in our own end, out of possession and even managed to get in our own way sometimes. It seems there may have been a good bit of false bravado in that comeback win last time that convinced us that we only had to be aggressive for long enough to see the more tender underbelly of the tuxedo'd poultry... and then we'd go in for the kill.

They say survival is a game best suited for those who can adapt. Adaptation became the fulcrum on which last night's game teetered... as will the rest of the games in this series. A game of chess in which we have exhausted our resources and sacrificed all our pawns thus far on the direct approach. It's indeed a dangerous game to play as it not only wears us thin, but it exposes us as 'one trick ponies' and demonstrates the way to beat us. The aggression is good if it can be bottled and applied when and where needed. It should be a means of channeling our offense and defense, and not our whole game. It becomes more apparent as we play the more hyper and bigger teams, that they know just where to wait for us and will attempt to outwork us along the boards. Thank God we're not playing on a pond, we'd never get anywhere without the boards.

We are now a younger team with younger legs, there's no reason to linger around the perimeters of the zone, using the boards as training wheels. I wouldn't mind seeing this team take the puck off the boards and practice their passing and puck handling in open ice... where it could ignite the skills of players like Gaborik, Stepan, perhaps Frolov..

Kudos go out to Prusty for taking on a much bigger man in Rupp, Avery for punching Kennedy and Roszival for not showing signs of rust. Still for the toughness factor, it's much better when it means something and is perhaps topping off a win. Even the most aggressive of Blind aggression is still Blind.

Between my periodical calls to my local pastor to see if hell has frozen over yet, I manage to check the NHL website to see if any disciplinary action, or hell, even an admission that the league witnessed Skidmark Sid slewfoot Callahan.   I guess I really only need to be checking one to get the answers to both.

Till next time,



  1. GREAT POST, J. Who said hockey isn't Shakespearean?


  2. I remember Hamlet weighing in once:

    To skate, perchance to score - ay, there's the goal lamp.

    Nice job, J!


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