Kukla's Korner Hockey
Stan Fischler writes in his post-game column after the Rangers lost 4-0 to the Panthers today…
My theory is that the Rangers, for no particular reason, do poorly in day games.
“We’re paid to win,” is Renney’s answer. “Day or night.”
I also pointed out to both the coach and Lundqvist that, historically, home teams rarely win right after Thanksgiving. You know; too much turkey; too many family distractions.
“I’m Swedish,” Lundqvist shot back, “I don’t celebrate Thanksgiving!”
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
Rozsival’s game has gone from bad to worse. Redden’s has gone from bad to somewhat better to worse after a relapse the last two matches. Neither is the least bit physically involved. (Wait, that’s what both are - the least bit physically involved.)
Neither has been acute reading the rush. Neither has been decisive with the puck. Neither has been able to make the power play hum.
At the same time, neither has been benched for so much as an even-strength shift by coach Tom Renney. Neither has been scratched.
That’s not possible with the Rangers carrying the minimum six defensemen so that GM Glen Sather can burn up to $3.6M of cap space every night on three scratched forwards.
from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,
Before coming out of the lineup last Wednesday night in New Jersey, Scott Gomez had played 10 games with an ankle stress fracture he sustained when struck by a puck in Detroit on Oct. 18, The Post has learned.
Gomez, who missed his fourth straight game last night when the Rangers and Canucks met at the Garden, learned the nature of his injury after undergoing an MRI exam on Nov. 7. The center then played two more games before finally yielding to pain he had been playing through and a groin pull he suffered in adapting to skating with the injury.
from The Good, The Bad And The Duthie,
Henrik Lunqvist pulled himself from the Rangers/Canucks game Wednesday after Vancouver scored it’s fifth goal, something he has done before. Lundqvist is one of the best goalies in the NHL, but what does that say to his teammates? “I quit guys, good luck.” Let your coach make the call. No game is over these days, even at 5-1. Claude Julien kept Manny Fernandez in after he gave up four first period goals against Buffalo, and the Bruins came back to win 7-4.
more hockey topics…
from Stan Fischler at Game On,
The curious thing about the Canucks is that their beat writers believe they are a better team than they showed on the ice in Uniondale. On Game Day, both Vancouver papers treated the Islanders game as a virtual exhibition in preparation for the real test at MSG. And for a short while, they appeared to know something that The Maven didn’t know. But Scott Gordon’s Isles, if nothing else, compete. They overcame an early (MacDonald’s fault) goal, scraped together a tying counter and extended the Canucks to the shootout where Luongo faltered and MacDonald did not.
Playing once again without Scott Gomez – it’s futile to guess how long he’ll be sidelined, so why not figure another week and get it over with? – the Renney-gades still should be able to handle Vancouver, Sedin Twins or not.
from Brett Cyrgaus of The Blue Seats at the NY Post,
This is a plea to all Rangers fans. It’s a plea to realize how much impact you have on the game and how much impact a gang-up mentality within a fan base can affect the players.
Specifically, this is a plea to stop mercilessly booing Michal Rozsival.
The defenseman, who in the off-season signed a lucrative 4-year $20 million contract, has been playing sub-par so far this season and has been hearing it from the fans. Let’s not turn him into this year’s Marek Malik.
from Sam Weinman of Rangers Report,
...here is what Redden said about facing the Senators tonight. He said he met up with Daniel Alfredsson and Chris Phillips, and only then did the significance of tonight start to hit home.
“I just think it’s the final recognition, going up against the old guys,” Redden said. “I think it’s a good thing. It really hit home just seeing the guys yesterday. It was different. I’m excited about playing them. It’s been a big change this year. I don’t know. I’m just looking forward to getting out there against them and knowing that I am against them. It’s good to finally play them.”
more on the Rangers
The KHL’s Vice-President of Hockey Operations Vladimir Shalaeva and others addressed the media at a press conference today in Moscow, with updates surrounding the investigation into Cherepanov’s death.
“Today November 14, 2008, there was a move to close the criminal investigation into the circumstances surrounding the death of Aleksei Cherepanov, however the prosecutor ordered that the criminal investigation continue.
“A comprehensive forensic study, conducted by additional medical specialists is underway to more deeply and thoroughly analyze the case. We will not be able to share the cause of death of Alexei Cherepanov until this examination is completed in full.”
Shalaeva also noted that the New York Rangers have provided their own medical records on Cherepanov to the KHL.
from Jay Greenberg of the NY Post,
Zherdev’s 16 points in his first 19 games projects to 67 for the season, which, barring a spectacular postseason, probably would make it his only one in a Ranger uniform. His contract is up and so likely would be the organization’s patience if someone this talented remains so invisible on so many nights.
“Alexei Kovalev,” Chris Drury offered as a Zherdev comparison after a game earlier this season. Both high and faint praise considering how unfulfilling became Kovalev’s tours of duty, particularly the second, in New York.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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