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Category: New-York-Rangers

Can The Capitals Comeback?

Capitals beat writer Tarik El-Bashir & Washington Post columnist Mike Wise discuss the chances of the Capitals making up a 0-2 series deficit against the Rangers.

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Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

The First ‘Sweep’ Talk Of The Playoffs

from Stan Fischler of Game On,

Should Alex Ovechkin’s name be changed to Ov-NYET-kin?

That’s NYET, as in nothing. Zip. Zilch goals in two playoff games as he heads for Broadway looking more like a bit player hidden among the headlining Rangers as Henny Lundqvist blanked Ovie and his Capitals, 1-0, on Saturday in our nation’s capital.

“We battled all three periods” says the Blueshirts’ behemoth blocker. “I was aware of Ovechkin but I felt sharp and confident.”

Perhaps it’s a bit cruel to demean Ovie, the NHL’s most feared shooter, as the Blueshirts prepare to host the National Hockey League’s most colorful — give or take Pittsburgh — team on Monday night at The Garden.

Where once The Maven’s suggestion of a New York sweep — made here last Wednesday — seemed the stuff of fairy tales, it now seems very possible, if not probable. As I said in my original forecast of an opening round triumph for John Tortorella’s team, GOALTENDING is the be all and end all of playoff superiority.

continued

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Gilroy Signs With Rangers

from Larry Brooks,

The Rangers have signed Boston University free agent defenseman Matt Gilroy, winner of the Hobey Baker Award as college hockey’s best player, The Post has learned.

Gilroy, the 24-year-old who led the Terriers to the NCAA title last week, received serious bids from a half-dozen teams, notably including the Devils, Maple Leafs and Lightning.

It’s believed the Long Island native, whose father, Frank, played basketball for St. John’s from 1997-81, signed a two-year deal for between $4-5 million.

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  Tags: matt+gilroy

Redden Playing For Wins

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

So yesterday, after a night on which he and partner Michal Rozsival were called on in relief of Marc Staal and Dan Girardi to contain the essentially uncontainable Alex Ovechkin in Game 1 against the Caps, Redden chuckled when I asked him whether he not only considered the playoffs as a clean slate, but whether he believed he was in need of one.

The question could have been the opening of a cross-examination had Redden been in a courtroom witness chair rather than a hockey locker room.

“Whether it was a good or bad regular season doesn’t matter at this point,” Redden said a day after his 27:35 of work contributed to the Rangers getting the series jump, 4-3.

“All that matters is we win every night, and that’s where my focus is, helping the team out.”

more

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  Tags: wade+redden

Capitals Have Defensive Zone Issues

from Stan Fischler of Game On,

Bragging is not The Maven’s forte.

With that in mind I’m not suggesting that my prediction of a Rangers opening series victory over Washington was underlined by their stirring win in Game One.

But looking ahead to the second game in our nation’s capital on Saturday, it is apparent that the Capitals may very well be a paper tiger and not necessarily a playoff scoring machine.

As I told you over and over again in my previews of this fascinating match-up, the Caps are so weak in goal and so deficient on defense that all the Ovechkins and Semins and Greens cannot compensate for a goalie so riddled with doubts — and deficiencies — as Jose Theodore.

continued

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How To Handle Avery

from Sally Jenkins of the Washington Post,

The Capitals are expecting some antics from Avery, prepared for it, actually. “Wouldn’t you do what you do best?” asked Coach Bruce Boudreau. Avery’s role in the first-round series between the Capitals and the New York Rangers will be to agitate Ovechkin if he can, and in general to be “a really good thorn in our side,” Boudreau predicts. They’re braced for his irritating act, the swaggering belligerence clad in a high-fashion wardrobe—will he wear Dries van Noten to the game, or Alexander McQueen?—and the combination of raw knuckles and condescension.

Avery’s tactics are all about control; it’s as if his hand is on a dial manipulating the temperatures of others. He upsets his victims with crudeness, but what should bother them most is his calculation. It’s all a set-up, he goads others by questioning their toughness, gets the best of them by honing in on their insecurities, then leaves them regretting the loss of self-control, and often walks away the winner.

read on

Filed in: NHL Teams, New York Rangers, Washington Capitals, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: sean+avery

How To Beat The Capitals

from Stan Fischler of Game On,

I’m sitting in the barber chair getting my locks clipped, while reading the latest issue of Sports Illustrated. Lo and behold, my eyes drifted down to the Eastern Conference predictions made by Pierre (What Doesn’t He Know) McGuire. Alas and alack,  Pierre selected Washington over New York in six games. Poof! Just like that; my doubts about the Rangers were erased.

Since Sports Illustrated’s predictions are always right, about 20 percent of the time, I immediately knew that everything will be just hunky-dory with the Blueshirts. If Sports Illustrated picks them to lose, it automatically means that the Rangers will win.

But I also know that my loyal and intelligent readership wants more than that little SI snippet to prove my point, so I’ll move on to The Fischler Guaranteed to Work Game Plan.

read on

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Rangers Need A Top-Notch Gomez

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

Gomez was a significant disappointment this season. The Blueshirts’ putative first-line pivot played only slightly better hockey for John Tortorella than he did for Tom Renney, finishing a 58-point season (16-42) by collecting four points (0-4) in the final eight games and 10 points (1-9) in the final 16.

“It was a hard year, not that I didn’t make it hard on myself,” Gomez said. “I can’t tell you how much I’m looking forward to the playoffs and the chance to make things right, not for myself, but for the team.”

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  Tags: scott+gomez

Ranger Observations

from Stan Fischler of Game On,

• One of my best John Tortorella “insiders” suggests that we should not be surprised if the underdog Blueshirts pull a first round upset. “Nobody,” my Tampa Bay tipster advises, “is a better playoff planner than Torts. Say what you will about any other part of his style but, when it comes to the post-season, there isn’t a better coach.”

• Henny Lundqvist’s learning curve suggests that — hard to believe — his BEST is yet to come. The Maven predicts that THIS will prove to be his best playoff since he arrived on Seventh Avenue.

• Nik Zherdev is SO skilled that he always manages to pull off a deluxe move just when half the house is about to give him The Bronx Cheer.

read on

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Rangers Get To Price

from Larry Brooks of the NY Post,

And so the Rangers need just one more, need just one more victory in their final two games to clinch a playoff spot after taking advantage of Carey Price’s slipshod night in nets to defeat the Canadiens 3-1 at the Garden last night while the Panthers were being beaten 2-1 in Philadelphia….

The Blueshirts inexorably took the game away from the Canadiens over the final 40 minutes with a combination of smart work in the neutral zone, a five-in-the-picture look in the defensive zone and sustained forecheck work and down-low pressure in the offensive end. But they received an immeasurable boost from Price’s inability to keep his balance (and poise) or play his angles.

He was terrible when it mattered, which was in the first and early in the second, when the Blueshirts seemed both tentative and as if they were waiting for something bad to happen.

But when something bad happened, it was to Price, who surrendered a horrid short-side goal to Chris Drury at 13:14 of the first and then lost the puck behind the net to Sean Avery, who got it in front so that a headlong-diving Nik Antropov could chip it in for the eventual winner at 2:37 of the second.

more

Filed in: NHL Teams, Montreal Canadiens, New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

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About Kukla's Korner Hockey

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.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

Email Paul anytime at pk@kuklaskorner.com

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