|"Is THAT all you got?"|
It's been ten years since the New York Rangers beat the St. Louis Blues, and last night with backup goalkeeper of the Gods, Marty Biron smashed and decapitated this little-known fact (23 saves), holding the Blues to one goal and making some outstanding quality saves to give the Blueshirts their third win in a row, only five points away from leading the Eastern Conference. Their opponent was young and strong and wanting, just as they were, but they battled on, despite having played the evening before in Dallas.
Official recap here.
|"Backes away you scoundrel, and take that....and that...." - Staal|
Looking back at this team's inefficiencies from the beginning of this season, our first pair on the blueline -- the shutdown Marc Staal and Dan Girardi -- are turning out to be one of the more consistent combos on this Rangers squad, holding The Blues to a season-low two shots in a scoreless first when New York managed only six. Though semi-responsible for St. Louis scoring on its second shot of the second period, they well made up for it in brutal shutdown defense that keeps getting better and better this season. This Torts system has well conditioned our young guys and it's working especially for the pairings of Staal-Girardi and Eminger-Sauer. Both lines are showing off and preventing goals.
The Blues' Brad Winchester opened the scoring on a deflection early in the second period. NYR Derek Stepan's 12th goal beat Blue's netminder Jaroslav Halak between the legs to tie it 1-1 midway through the second. Avery's second of the season at 15:26 erased momentum the Blues had built while taking nine straight shots. Dubinsky emerged from the scrum with the puck and fed it to Marian Gabroik, whose fluttering shot deflected off Halak's chest and sailed over his helmet, landing near the goal-line. Avery tapped it in for his first goal since Oct. 27. It was a give and go and give wet dream goal.....pure and sweet! “A couple great passes by my two linemates and I was able to get one past him there,” said Stepan. “It was a good play by the whole line. Something just seems to click with us, and we’ve built some good chemistry.”
"We weren't spot on. Our team's tired, we're a little bit beat up," Rangers coach John Tortorella said. "But we grinded. That's who we are, that's how we're going to have to play."
|The Coliseum a.k.a as The Garden|
Montreal hasn't seen the grit & tenacity of this team and this is one Rangers pack I don't think would allow six or seven goals, as we've witnessed (and never forget) the last three seasons against them. The Habs should look forward to a team that retaliates and stands up for each other, a team that rises to the third period occasion and unexpectedly wins games when you let your guard down. Now mind you, there are four tough games this week for the Blueshirts: Tuesday against Montreal, Thursday against the non-losing Vancouver Canucks, a re-match against Montreal on Saturday, ending with a home game against the first-place Philadelphia Flyers. This is another true test for our young 'ens in Blue. How many of the eight points available are they good for and is it conceivable to take over a leading spot in the division and/or conference with a couple of Pittsburgh & Philly losses this week?
|The Hobbit Gladiator has impressed The King (Henrik)|
Hang tight Rangers fans. This week will define who we are, and as all of the New York teams seem to be surging, we should all first rejoice & lift our glasses of mead and toast the victories of the past and look toward the slaughtering of those that wish to dethrone us. New York is the best sports town in the world. New York has the best fans in the world. And it doesn't hurt when your teams don't suck.