Game Wrap-upsMusingsPlayoffs

Thoughts after not being able to watch the first three games

Well I’m back. I was in Charleston, taking my lovely girlfriend for a long weekend for her 30th birthday. She will probably write about it on soon, so if you are curious, keep checking that out.

Anyway I couldn’t watch most of the first three games of the series. I caught the third period of Game One from a local bar, which was the only part of this series I saw. I missed all of Game Two, despite being back in time to watch, because the hotel we stayed at had NBCSN, but not NBC (or any of the other flagship stations). I thought that was weird. For last night’s game, I was in the airport or on a delayed flight. Such is life.

I was able to read Twitter timelines, and I put together some general conclusions from the games:

  • The Pens lost Game One by a goal. Sweep coming. Crosby stinks. Malkin stinks. Fire Johnston. Trade Malkin. Just put the Pens in front of a firing squad. They are done. Old Yeller them.
  • The Rangers won Game One by one goal. Give them the Cup.
  • The Pens take a lot of penalties.
  • The Rangers lost Game Two. Bench Hayes. Bench Nash. Start Talbot. Fire AV. Start anew with the powerplay. Decline the powerplay.
  • The Pens are going to win four straight. Everyone was right about this Rangers team being overrated. Blow it up. Trade for McJesus.
  • The Pens don’t know how to stay out of the box. Not like it matters.
  • Rangers win Game Three. Heart attacks had. Powerplay still stinks.
  • The powerplay stinks.
  • The Rangers would have won the Cup already if they had a powerplay.
  • Why can’t they score on the powerplay?
  • Faceoffs!

I think I summed this up pretty nicely actually. But in all seriousness, this is going to be a long, long postseason if you live and die by each shot on net. They will not go 16-1 en route to the Cup. It’s much more likely that they go 16-12, because this team likes to make us sweat. Sit back, relax. Ok, just sit back. Fine, sit on the edge of your seat, don’t relax, and scream at your TV. Just don’t blame me when your neighbors complain.

James Sheppard. Tanner Glass.

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  • Yeah Dave that just about says it. Live and die on every shot on goal. Look this was always going to be a long series; you’re not going to keep Crosby off the scoresheet forever; if they can keep him from scoring 6 every night they’ll be OK. He’s a great player, and everyone knows he’s a protected species to boot. Great play by Yandle and Hagelin last night. Enjoy.

    P.S. everyone here in western New York has a conspiracy theory about McDavid staying in Canada. Interesting.

    Regards- orange

    • I don’t think the conspiracy is McDavid in Canada, I think it’s McDavid in Edmonton, as I believe they are having attendance/money issues.

      • Second Coming of the Great One, anyone? Perhaps The Great One II?

        I saw that coming a million miles away. Maybe I should reserve those domain names or even better, we start using those hashbrowns to promote BSB. 😀

  • Dave,

    Do not take this the wrong way but you should really try to find someone to fill in for you when you are not available. This is playoff season and there are no goal breakdowns or anything. I appreciate the bullet points at all but it would be nice to have more detail, especially since it’s playoff time. This is such a great site and I enjoy it immensely so again, please don’t take this as negative.

    • Come on dude. Dave and the gang do such a thorough job throughout the whole year, with more articles, metrics and out of the box type of talk then any other site, and you gotta say that?

      It’s not like this is his business and am sure he’s not making money with this, and when there’s family obligations at hand, what do you want him to do?

      If you want just a goal breakdown, there’s tons of other sites you can go to for that, until he comes back.

      Anyway, as far as last night’s game goes….I’m sorry, but we are just the better team in every facet of the game, and regardless of what the score shows, we out classed them last night, and in my opinion, we have been throughout this series. Is it going to be easy? NO! But I’d be damned if we dont win this series.

      • Rob,

        You are 100% right and as I said, I did not want to sound negative because I love the site and appreciate the work that goes along with it. I guess I am just spoiled.

        In terms of the game…50 minutes of perfect hockey. As Pat Riley once said when coaching the Knicks, all that matters in the playoffs is the win.

        • No I totally hear ya. We’re ALL very spoiled with this site to say the least, but remember, we all have each other. As much as Dave and the crew run things…..Many of the emotional Ranger support is through one another. I can’t imagine where my mental Ranger state of mind be w/o some of you, like Walt, the two Joe´s, Snake, Sal, Fotiu and so many more regulars that I just don’t have the time to write down now lol…..Don’t know where I’d be w/o my BSB Ranger brothers n sisters!

          • A great community needs exceptional moderation. Plenty of sites have content, but people won’t participate when the monkeys run the monkey house. There is a reason this blog has such great members that include people that have been fans since the 40s.

            Keep up the great work!

            And don’t feel too bad about missing the games. I missed almost all of the playoff run in ’94 due to work and had to watch on the games on tape. I even worked through the first two periods of the final game. No one will ever question your Ranger fandom. All that matters is that you’re able to watch it when they hoist the Cup. 🙂

      • They *do* do a great job, which is why someone should fill in. They’re game breakdowns are much better and more thorough than others out there. We come here because the analysis is good, not just for a random guy’s thoughts.

        That being said, this is an excellent meta-analysis of the Twitter reaction. Hilarious!

        • Thanks for the compliments.

          I hope you all can understand that this is a hobby, not a job. Personal and professional lives come first.

    • I love you guys, but my girlfriend takes priority over you all, no offense.

      The team here does their best to cover when I am gone, however I cannot ask them to commit that much time to a goal breakdown. They take a lot of time to write and I don’t pay them. Hell, I don’t even pay myself for this.

  • “But in all seriousness, this is going to be a long, long postseason if you live and die by each shot on net.”

    Isn’t that called being a fan? I agree, you can’t make rash judgements (ie: wanting to bench Nash/Hank/Hayes etc)…but you can live and die with every shot/goal/call. To be honest that’s the fun of it.

  • Dave

    Funny stuff, and pretty accurate!!!!

    Now let me rant about last night’s game. We win, but I’m about t bitch. Why can’t this team run up the score, or play offense in the 3rd with a lead?????????

    How many times have I said that I hate the prevent defense? We were in complete control of the game, then we sit back and let the clowns in black and gold come at us for 20 minutes. They score, and then the pressure builds to no end. My old heart can’t take this anymore. Please AV, Rangers, whoever is in charge, don’t do this to us, play with the intention of scoring again in the 3rd, and not sit back on a lead.

    Now that I vented, and feel better, have I ever told you guys how I hate the prevent defense?? Sorry if I did, oh well you get the point!!!!! LOR!!!

    • Yeah Walt but you don’t want to be going all out in the third period of a playoff game with a 2-0 or 2-1 lead against anyone, much less the Penguins with all the firepower they still have. Look the bottom line is, you have to agree the Rangers have a very good record with a third-period lead; I’ll take my chances. Not a lot of these games are going to be 5-1.

      If two Rangers get caught in the corner, fighting for the puck and a third guy is drifting into the zone, looking for the puck, what happens if the puck is pushed past him? Now you have a 3-on-2 odd-man rush. And if two of those guys are named Crosby and Malkin, you have a problem. Maybe Hank makes a great game-saving save, maybe he doesn’t, and Crosby pushes one past him with 90 seconds left for a 2-2 tie. The Penguins get lucky in OT and now you have 5 million Ranger fans calling for Vigneault’s head.

      I know the 2-1 games are stressful; that’s what playoff hockey is. The Rangers are not a fore-checking team, they’re a puck-possession speed team. And again, they have a really good record in the third period with a lead; I think things are going to be OK. Regards- orange

      • I think the major issue is that they get off their forecheck and just allow the opposition to gain the zone. That’s not Rangers hockey.

        • Correct. That is the difference between Game 1 and Game 3. In Game 1 they stayed with the forecheck. Last night they went into a shell starting right after the 10:49 mark in the third.

          No question Pittsburgh was bringing it and that contributed to the onslaught. The difference is how the Rangers reacted to it. I don’t think it’s the players making that call. I think it’s AV. I haven’t checked the post-game videos yet, but I am willing to bet if they interviewed Marc Stahl he is going to express his disgust with the D-shell….AGAIN!

          • There’s an old saying in sports- “Coaches coach, and players play.” In the two years Vigneault has been here, he’s put in a pretty good system and acquired some players that work well in it. A trip to the Cup finals and a President’s Cup is a pretty good record so far. If Marc Stahl is unhappy with the third period system, he would be advised to, as they say, keep his mouth shut.

            The coach puts in the system, and the players play it. Dave I agree with you that on occasion they get off their forecheck. Maybe this is just me, but some of that may have something to do with the talent on the opposing team. Sometimes the other team just figures out a way to beat it.

            Again, I’ll take my chances with the way the Rangers are playing this season. Good stuff, guys. Should be fun tonight. As I type this I’m watching the replay of Islanders/Caps OT last night; I know the result and I have goosebumps. Nothing like playoff hockey.

            Regards- orange

    • You know, you are a Ranger fan, and as such, it is required that nothing be given easily to you. You could become a Devils fan…no anxiety there.

        • The entire NHL is in for a long stretch of mediocrity. You think Tampa would be tearing it up without Cally, Boyle and Anton?

          It’s called parity and we’re stuck with it for better or worse.

  • Was it me, or did I see the Referee protecting Cindy at the end of the game? Back of the net fisticuffs that Crosby instigates, gets in a few cheap shots, the whistle blows and the ref pulls him out of harms way while the rest of the teams tussle.

    He is a dirty little SOB.

  • So I’m listening to The Pens coach complain about the “quality of the shots” his team was taking over the first 2 periods. When a writer questioned him as to why he was concerned, considering they had hardly any shots going into the 3rd; his answer?—“thats what I’m talking about.” HUH!!!!! If this is the coaching genius they have on the bench, it wont take much longer to dispatch this team. They want to get the Rangers into a game along the boards?—-Uh okay! Lets do it. They have this impression that the Rangers are nothing more than a fancy-dan, soft team who can’t play a grinding game.This according to Ben Lovejoy. Ooookay??!!! Again, lets do it!! And by the way, who and what is a Ben Lovejoy????

    • Dude, during most of the game (and a good part of the series) Pittsburgh has forced the game to the boards. The Rangers are not a good team when forced to play that style. I’ve watched it happen over and over during this series. This is where the Rangers *REALLY* miss a guy like Cally. They don’t have the grit to play that style.

      AV/Sather put all their eggs in the speed/”Fancy-Dan” basket. If a team is able to find a way to beat the Rangers, they will do it just the way Pittsburgh is trying to do it now. LA and Boston are out, but there are still teams that can play that way and win. Pittsburgh ain’t one of ’em though.

      • My point exactly. Pittsburgh is not the type of team to challenge the Rangers along the boards. With Hagelin, Moore, Kreider, they can more than match up with the Pens. If that is they’re tactic against the Rangers; I don’t see it being too much of a problem. As you said, they ain’t Boston or LA.

  • I think that later in the playoffs you will see more 3rd period action from the rangers. The rangers have one of the best if not the best top 4 D-men in the league and their salaries tell you that…

    Although a bit restless with just a one goal lead, I am 100% confident in our D-capabilities to play the prevent, play the shutdown D and skate away with a victory.

    Remember that this is the playoffs and that even in these playoffs scrappy goals count. The goals that the Pens have scored in game 1 and 2 were both scrappy. Nothing is pretty for them. Nothing is easy. That is what a shutdown d makes happen. Of course I would like a shutout game two. Of course I would like a 3 goal cushion. Of course i don’t like when the pens score scrappy loose puck goals but this is hockey and that stuff happens even against the toughest of D-men.

    The only thing I want to say is, embrace the Prevent, boast the Power Play. I read a good stat line about game 2. Rangers were 1 for 7 on the PP. On Brass’ PP goal – The Rangers had seven shots on goal and 10 shot attempts on that one power play. They had six shots on goal on their other six power plays. If that doesn’t scream shoot the puck I am not sure what will. Looked much better last night so lets hope it keeps trending in the right direction…

    Thanks Dave. We can’t always watch every game but appreciate the ones that you recap… and the ones you don’t.

  • Anybody catch the John Gianone screwup on the post-game. After Al threw it over to John for his final game summary, halfway though, he messes up, and starts yelling “Crap-olla!!!. They used the wrong tape on air. Pretty funny to see someone so professional as Gianone lose it like that over a mistake.

  • Not sure it was a pure ‘prevent’ defense that caused the game to close up. At 2-0 Stepan missed on a pure breakaway and then again failed to swipe a rebound into a wide open net. If he converts either of those it’s 3-0 and game over without the big Penguin push.

    • Even his own team despises him. Did you notice in the video, that after the guard in the white shirt couldn’t get the door unlocked for Cindy that Crosby elbowed him in the head. This happened just out of view of the camera on the right side of the picture.

  • Yup that is exactly the reactions of the first 3 games in a nutshell…

    I’ve visited Charleston once, we made a day trip out of it while staying in Myrtle Beach, well worth it… I still think about Folly Beach and that lighthouse way out in the ocean. Cool place.

  • Hey Dave I was away too in Costa Rica for 8 days. Believe it or not they had NHL hockey on down there, probably for all the Canadian tourists. Game 1 was on and I saw a little but couldn’t keep my wife waiting because their was dinner in the gourmet restaurant. Watched a little of Game 2 in the morning before going to the beach and I recall I was really pissed off by that phantom penalty to Hags and when they scored on that PP, my wife turned it off to cool me down. Only found out about Game 3 this morning as we got in to Toronto at 2 AM after a five hour flight. Was relieved to hear the score. Can’t figure out why we can’t win game 2s? GO RANGERS!!!!!

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