by Patrick Hoffman on 01/07/11 at 12:35 PM ET
Earlier this week, I wrote a blog regarding the New York Rangers’ defense. In the blog, I mentioned how Marc Staal and Dan Girardi should be considered as one of the top shutdown defensive pairs in the National Hockey League.
Well, Jesse Spector, New York Rangers’ beat writer for the Daily News, wrote a great article today explaining that notion:
At the beginning of the season, John Tortorella had Girardi and Staal work together only against elite competition, otherwise preferring to have them skate separately. As the campaign has reached the halfway point, though, the duo is inseparable, and bordering on impenetrable.
“Those guys, to see them grow here, I’ve been here since Staalsie and Danny got here, and every year, you see them get more confidence, and they get more responsibilities,” said Rangers defenseman Michal Rozsival. “Right now, this is it. They play against the top lines, and they’re the shutdown guys against top players from other teams. They’ve done an outstanding job. It’s not easy to play against other teams’ top lines sometimes. They have grown so much and become leaders of the team.”
Click here for more on the emergence of Staal and Girardi.
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Patrick has a tremendous passion for hockey. Besides covering the Rangers and the NHL for Kukla's Korner, you can also find Patrick's work over at Sportsnet.ca, The Red Light District Hockey Blog, NHL Home Ice, and Liam Maguire's Ultimate Hockey web site.
Prior to writing for the above mentioned outlets, you could find Patrick's musings at hockey web sites/outlets such as TheHockeyNews.com, TheFourthPeriod.com, Spector's Hockey, Hokeja Vestnesis, Blueshirt Bulletin, SNYRangersBlog.com and many more.
For questions, comments and hip checks, feel free to e-mail Patrick at firstname.lastname@example.org.