Archive for Game Thread


Game 53: All in for Dahlin

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AP Photo/Bill Kostroun

The tank and sell machine is in full effect for the Rangers. Rick Nash has been asked for his no-trade list. Tampa Bay is interested in Ryan McDonagh. The Rangers are in the news, and this time for the right reasons. Selling, and recognizing a retool is needed, is the right move. Injuries may have forced their hand, but this was always the right move.

There is a game tonight, though, as the Rangers are in Dallas to take on a Stars team that could probably use some defensive depth. That said, this is a solid Stars team that can tear a defense apart. Plus Ken Hitchcock is a good coach. Good thing the Rangers have Steven Kampfer in the lineup.

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Game 52: Cody McLeod returns to Nashville

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The Rangers, after failing to show up against Toronto, are now in Nashville to take on my Cup pick. It should be a teary reunion in Nashville, as noted enforcer Cody McLeod returns for the first time since the Rangers grabbed him off waivers. I kid, of course. Mostly making fun of Thursday night’s broadcast where McLeod was seen as a savior by Sam and Joe.

As for the actual game, I don’t expect much anymore. Pavel Buchnevich got added to the walking wounded with a concussion. So now the Rangers look more like the Wolf Pack than the Rangers. But hey, if it helps drive them towards the proper decision to sell, then I’ll take that silver lining. I will never root for them to lose, but I really do dislike how they play right now. Show some emotion every now and then.

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rangers leafs mika zibanejad

The Rangers are back in action tonight, taking on the very talented Leafs in the first of 13 pre-trade deadline games. This is the first game that the players will have to prove to the leadership in the front office that they should not be sellers.

It’s a tall order for this club, as they are without two of their top players and have looked lost without them. Granted, they looked lost with them, but that’s besides the point. The point is the club needs to actually learn how to play defense and stop allowing so many damn shots.

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Game 50: Shark Bait, Hoo Ha Ha

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The Rangers, winners of three in ten and zero of of their last three, are now in San Jose to cap off their brutal Pacific Coast trip. There’s been a ton of mediocre play, and that’s putting it lightly. Luckily for the Blueshirts, they’ve caught San Jose without Joe Thornton, so their vaunted forward group took a major hit.

When it comes to playoff hopes, the Blueshirts are already on the outside looking in, as the Penguins roared back into the playoffs with a huge PDO correction that is currently ongoing. They have a game in hand on the Pens, but are two points behind them. The rest of the teams in the playoffs all have games in hand on the Blueshirts. It’s not looking good, if you were hoping for a miracle run. If you’re hoping for selling, then perhaps you’re getting your wish. I’m hoping for selling, but I can’t root against my team.

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AP Photo/Frank Franklin II

The Rangers are now 0-2 on their west coast swing, with a stop in Anaheim tonight to take on the surprisingly mediocre Ducks. The Ducks are a weird team, because they should be better than they are. They’ve dealt with injuries though, and the team the Blueshirts face tonight is not the team they faced earlier in the season.

For the Rangers, this is their game in hand on both Pittsburgh and the Isles. Lose this, and both leap frog (I believe it’s both, but it’s definitely at least the Pens) the Blueshirts in the standings. I know that losing helps their future more by not buying at the deadline, but I can’t for the life of me route for them to lose.

Note: West coast games stink. No recap for tomorrow. Sorry.

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Game 48: Desperation mode

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rangers kings Rick nash

The Rangers lost yesterday in a less-than-comforting effort to the Colorado Avalanche. Tonight they travel to LA to kick off their Pacific coast road trip with three tough games against LA, Anaheim, and San Jose. All three will test the shorthanded Rangers. And if our Blueshirts want to stay relevant in the playoff race, they will need a bunch of points.

It may seem alarmist to say desperation mode, but that’s where we are right now. Injuries have crippled the Rangers, who weren’t even playing well to begin with. Now they look worse and are dressing a good amount of players that are either career AHLers or at least started the season in the AHL. They are going to need some luck, but you create your own luck by playing a full 60 minutes. The latter is in their control.

Admin note: As you are all aware, these games start very late and end in the wee hours of the morning. All of us at BSB have regular jobs and such, and cannot stay up that late for a recap. So there won’t be any recaps the next three games. Sorry folks.

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Game 47: Cooling the Avs

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henrik lundqvist

Photo: Jim McIsaac/Newsday

The Rangers are in Colorado this afternoon to take on a surprisingly hot Colorado team that is no longer a push over. The Avs are 9-1 in their last ten games and have skyrocketed in the standings. They are also crazy good at home (17-7-1). With the Rangers down a top pairing defenseman and top line winger, this is going to be a challenge.

For the Rangers, all eyes will be on Tony DeAngelo. DeAngelo was called up in light of the injury to Kevin Shattenkirk, and may see regular playing time. Take that with a grain of salt, of course, because the last six games he was here in October, he played powerplay minutes only, with the Rangers basically rotating 11F/6D and DeAngelo with the man advantage. Kevin Hayes and Marc Staal are game-time decisions, as well.

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Game 46: Show consistency

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AP Photo/Jeffrey T. Barnes

The Rangers played a solid game on Tuesday, handing the Flyers a big loss by a score of 5-1. The score was nice, but the most important part was that the Rangers seemed engaged in the game, playing close to a full 60 minutes. They won’t be perfect in any game, but that was as close as we will get for this team.

Tonight is a very winnable game against the Sabres. Buffalo really isn’t good, and the Blueshirts need the two points before heading out west for a tough road trip. If the good guys want to stay relevant, they need the win.

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The Rangers came back from their bye week and were promptly outscored 12-4 by a pair of division rivals. They’ve allowed 30+ shots in the past 15 games and haven’t won in regulation since December 17. So it can’t possibly get much worse. I hope.

The Flyers are a point behind the Rangers and one of the three teams that can unseat the Rangers for that final playoff spot. So from a playoff perspective, this game has a lot of value to it. But from a Rangers perspective, they just need to get back to playing actual hockey. They’ve been horrible to watch lately.

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Game 44: ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

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After yesterday afternoon’s “game” against the Isles, the Rangers traveled to Pittsburgh for another divisional showdown against the defending back-to-back Cup champs. The Penguins are not the same as they used to be, very top heavy and lacking on the blue line. That said, they’ve been extremely unlucky all year, and that terrible SH% is bound to get back to normal.

If the Rangers continue to play like they have the past few weeks, they are going to get torched by the Penguins. Regardless of their struggles, they still have elite talent that can put the puck in the net. We keep wondering the Rangers will wake up. We’ve been waiting for a few years now.

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