Game Wrap-upsPlayoffs

Rangers stung by late goal, fall to Habs in Game 2

The New York Rangers were 17 seconds away from grabbing a 2-0 stranglehold on their opening round series with the Montreal Canadiens, but the Stanley Cup Playoffs are rarely so straightforward.  Tomas Plekanec scored a late equalizer to send the game to overtime, and Alexander Radulov won it for the Habs in the first overtime period to tie the series at 1-1.

The Rangers were the masters of their own demise, playing an extremely tentative third period while holding a 3-2 lead, seemingly inviting pressure from the desperate hosts.  Rather than staying aggressive on the forecheck and holding onto possession – two things the Rangers had excelled in doing to start the series – the team chose a more conservative route, icing the puck constantly and rarely threatening Carey Price’s net.  Needless to say, the strategy backfired.

Make no mistake: Henrik Lundqvist was absolutely brilliant in this game, making a ridiculous 54 saves on 58 shots(!) in a heroic, losing effort.  The King was visibly frustrated with his defense all night.  If the Rangers are going to win this series, all six defensemen – no matter who Alain Vigneault chooses to dress – will need to play a lot better.

The Rangers actually started the game well, but found themselves trailing for the first time in the series just minutes into the first period.  Jeff Petry scored Montreal’s first goal of the playoffs, off of an extended scramble that resulted in Lundqvist floundering without a stick.  The Rangers were laughably disorganized, allowing Petry to walk in and snipe a wrist shot over the prone King’s right shoulder.

Michael Grabner answered with his second goal of the playoffs, a breakaway where the Austrian speedster faked Carey Price out of his pads.  Unfortunately, the lead lasted less than two minutes.  Chris Kreider turned the puck over at the red line, courtesy of a poor Nick Holden pass, and seconds later Paul Byron buried a Brendan Gallagher feed to give the Habs a 2-1 lead.

The Rangers’ playoff experience proved valuable in the second period, as two of their most dependable forwards came up with goals.  Rick Nash scored the game-tying goal, an absolute laser of a shot over Carey Price’s left shoulder.  Mats Zuccarello’s excuse-me deflection with 5 minutes remaining in the period gave Rangers fans a chance to dream of a short series.

But it wasn’t to be.  The Rangers attempted to will the clock to zeroes, absorbing a tremendous amount of Canadiens pressure in the third.  Montreal sent 33 shot attempts towards the Rangers net in the period, and with 17.3 seconds remaining, Plekanec redirected Radulov’s centering feed past Lundqvist to tie the game.

Overtime brought the usual taut, breathtaking hockey that makes the Stanley Cup Playoffs so special.  Unfortunately for the Rangers, they simply couldn’t snap out of their third period malaise.  Alexander Radulov swatted home a rebound with 1:26 remaining in overtime, sending this series back to Madison Square Garden knotted at 1-1.

All in all, the Rangers will be happy having split the first two games of the series, but the way Game 2 ended will certainly leave a sour taste behind.  The pressure now transfers to the Blueshirts, who head back to Madison Square Garden hoping to reverse the season-long mediocrity they’ve experienced at home in 2016-2017.  The onus is on Alain Vigneault to make the necessary adjustments (benching Nick Holden, perhaps?) and on the players to be more assertive in front of the Garden faithful.

See you on Sunday.

Show More
      • I’ll be in my usual Section 215, I bet you can’t wait to meet me. 🙂

        Just teasing, hope all is well.

      • 120. Looking right down the goal line. The players families and “girlfriends” sit towards the bottom of the section. You can always pick them out because you see a 10 year old with a Holden or Kampfor jersey. You say to yourself that’s probably the only one ever sold!

  • Great recap! Thanks Rob. The one thing you didn’t touch on is why WHY WHY were Holden and Staal out there for the last minute. Does someone know what the D shifts were leading up to that last minute? Why do you even Have a Ryan McDonagh on the team if he is not on the ice for the most important minute of the season (up to that point). This is on AV. I’m not even convinced Holden should be in the lineup let alone out for to protect a one goal lead with a minute to go before grabbing a strangle hold on the series. Sorry. Venting.

    • AV playoff strategy. Not the first time we have seen this or the first time their opponents have seen it. Give up playing offense for that long hard to get it back – case in point they never got it back again. Game is a great teaching tool of what NOT to do with the lead. Have to either go for it all or nothing in the playoffs – sadly when it comes to the playoffs AV always chooses nothing.

      • If that is AV’s strategy then why did we not let up in the third period of game 1 where we out shot them 17-5?

        The Rangers let up last not for some reason. But it was not by design.

    • The Rangers played not to lose in the third. They sent two men in, sat defenseman above the blue line and allowed easy outs. Had no o-zone presence. Holden is a mess. Montreal wanted this game more. The beginning of overtime you could see the Rangers were stunned by the tie and everyone could see they would not win this game.

      • Stevesse that’s exactly what I said to my son. They’re playing not to lose and that they were going to get burned eventually.

        • first game he slowed the game down and bottled up the neutral zone with a 1-2-2 and even lots of 1-1-3 setups …. nobody really went deep to force the play and it worked the whole game aside from a few good chances the Habs had with crappy out passes and turnovers ( and why is Holden even on the ice is beyond me ! )

  • Holden should not be a Ranger after this season. That giveaway with a minute to go right to a Hab along the boards started the whole onslaught at the end. Then Miller and Grabner can’t clear and it cost them the game.

    And as Mikeyyy said above, why did they stop playing?

    The D was very good in Game 1 and then they were back to their old tricks last night. Saying it now, the Habs will be crashing the net like crazy for the rest of the series as the Ranger D has no answers.

    Great coverage on the Petry goal and then WTF was Stepan doing on the 2nd Habs’ goal? Stood there and watched.

    • History repeats itself with AV doesn’t it?? The ice was tilted for the whole of the third, and over time periods. Here is the broken record again, why the hell do we go into our defensive shell, prevent defense, all it does is prevent you from winning. This team, or any other for that matter, really can’t turn on the offense on the dime, and expect to play decent offense after being on their heels for that long a stretch. I just hate that prevent garbage!!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • Hey Walt.

        I try to love our coach, I really do because he has a good record. But the simple fact is that he’s not a Cup worthy coach. I mean why did he have that train wreck of a D pair out there at the end? They have been, by far, THE WORST D pair they have so far this series. But yet, there they were.

        Holden is the worst D man they have right now and it’s not even close. Efn guy is so close to Lundqvist that he’s actually a liability in those scrambles. Who does he think he is? Rod Seiling? lol.

        And the turtling. Why? WHY?

        • Where have you been Richter?! Blog is not the same without you.

          Already covered it…..they didnt turtle as much as they were gassed it seemed. Puck management was bad in the third period. Habs were desperate to save their season and had push. We kept icing the puck further adding to the fatigue issues. So deployment at the end becomes about fresh legs. All we needed to do was win possession and the Holden/Staal thing is a non-issue. The coach cant do a thing if you are being pinned in the zone.

          AV is the culprit when we lose. Players are the heroes when we win. Never changes.

          I agree on Holden. If there is a viable healthier option, time to make it.

          • Agree E3. It’s always the coach when we lose and players when we win. I thought we,looked tired by the end of the third. Would have helped if we cleared the puck more. When will the untouchables start scoring too

          • E3

            Somehow the coach has to motivate the players, simple and sweet. When you have a TV time out, chew out some asses, that should get their attention, and if not, then the man behind the bench is being tuned out. If that is the case, show the guy the door!!!!!!!!!!!!!

            In game one we were really lucky to get the first fluke goal, and the empty netter, otherwise we’d be down by two……….

            As for the defensive pair of Staal, and Holden, I don’t want to get into it, somehow that will get my bowels in an uproar!!!!!!!!!!!!

          • Walt-

            I hear you, but I guess being in locker rooms for many years, I just think that “motivation” stuff is a little overblown. Sure, there are moments and exceptions. But in today’s pro sports world, I dont think many managers/coaches really do that. They teach, they make decisions. The rah rah stuff is a little overblown.

            Is Bill Belichick known as a motivator? Not that I’m aware of. He’s a brilliant tactician. Joe Maddon is the most anti-team meeting guy in baseball. He prepares his team, makes decisions, and lets them play.

            I realize hockey is a different animal and there are different styles, but I really believe that more coaches in this day and age are more “AV-like” then you think, at least temperamentally.

          • These are NHL professional athletes. They do not need a motivational speaker to be able to find their game.

          • OK I’ll give you that, but then explain the ebb, and flow of the game they play. They are way up, and soooooooooooo down, I find that to be mind boggling???????????

          • I think the answer is simple. Starting with the 2012 playoffs, this core group is 2-14 in playoff games when they’ve attempted to go up two games in a series. And that’s under two different head coaches. So it’s not an AV thing per se. Torts similarly had the same issue here.

            Conversely, under AV anyway, they’ve only been down 2-0 in a series just once, but that was in the SCF against a great team that was way better than they were. They have been down 3-1 three times (to superstar-laden teams like the Pens and Caps) but remarkably in two of those three they rallied back to win.

            To me, this would seem to contradict Paul’s belief that this group doesn’t handle adversity well. Indeed, the opposite seems to be true. Under both AV and Torts, they thrived when their backs were against the wall. It’s success that they don’t handle well, not adversity.

            I will sound like a broken record here, but it lends credence to my belief that they are what they are–a good but not great team that really isn’t designed to dominate ANY playoff opponent–especially one that is their equal–at least based on their regular season record. (Personally I think the Canadiens are a better team, but for this discussion, let’s assume they are even).

            So not really mind-boggling, just the law of averages involving two evenly matched teams.

          • Absolutely what I said to the boys in the firehouse last night, 30 seconds before the goal was scored, the players were no longer moving, completely gassed. A lot more fun to blame AV though!! LGR! I still believe!

          • Hey pal, TAX SEASON!! lol, it’s almost over though, thank God.

            Even the AV shill Larry Brooks is questioning the D rotation that led to Holden being on the ice at the end. Bottom line is, this is the playoffs, and you ride McD until he drops because a gassed McD is 100 times better than that stiff Holden at his best.

            As for the turtling, yeah they did for almost the whole 3rd period. They started chipping the puck out of the zone instead of passing it out of the zone. Were they gassed for the whole 3rd period? Maybe, because it has been a very physical series so far, but that’s a bad excuse if that’s the case and should not be the case.

            This loss would not be nearly as devastating if the Rangers were playing well at home because getting a split on the road is very nice. But it won’t matter if the Rangers lose a home game, or worse, both home games. Then it will be a short series.

            AV needs to show he’s a good coach and put the players in that will help by taking out the ones that suck.

            And Kreider, Miller, and Hayes need to do a heck of a lot more, and like now.

          • Richter-

            It is more than fair to question the defensive deployment there. The problem is we are dealing with limited info. What was the situation with Skjei/Smith at that time. Were they gassed? Did Holden/Staal have fresher legs? Was that Beuke’s call or AV’s? Once the decision was made, hard to change it. There was no timeout available. That decision may well have happened against AV’s wishes. We will never know.

            There are always decisions that can be questioned by any coach after any playoff loss. Torts was questioned (“Stop coaching Pat”) often and rightly so. Keenan would do bizarre things al the time.

            Check out this article in The Hockey News following Game 1


            Julien was taken to the woodshed here. Maybe all these coaches are clueless. 🙂

          • and yet, if Henrik does not play off the charts then the Rangers will probably lose the series.

          • Well that’s a definite. In the playoffs, we will only go as far as Hank will take us. He’s been spectacular thus far.

        • Not to simply expand the echo chamber here, Richter, but that loss wasn’t solely on the brain trust.

          Indeed, having Staal and Holden on the ice was suicidal, if not wildly regrettable. Beuk and AV just flat out blew it.

          But the blame extends out, to the forward lines who just aren’t driving the play. Or disappearing.

          Kreider: a complete non-factor.

          Kreider and Helen/Kevin Hayes played as if they were contact-averse hemophiliacs. The Boston Cream Pie boys.

          Stepan: a bystander. Cute. Indifferent.

          If I’m Zuke, JT Miller, Glass and his line mates, I’m looking around the room last night, not with a gutting sense of disappointment, but some disgust. At the five or six conspicuous no-shows sitting amongst them.

          • Spot on comments Fotiu is God!

            I put Nash near that ‘should have played with fire and passion like zucc and miller ‘ category!!!!

            Zuke, JT Miller, Glass and his line mates, vesey, lindberg, fast grabner showed up to play……

            If I am zucc or mcdonagh or girardi or esp hank I BLAST the ears of stepan, kredier, nash, hayes [and AV] in that locker room before the next game…..

            This teams needs a messier or even a dubinsky type on the ice and a better coach behind the bench!!!

          • Amen, Rich S. Amen.

            You, I, if not a small clutch of us here will forever value heart ‘n soul types, like Dubi, McIlrath; all the depth players Mike Keenan knew well and called on. The lunchpail types that win these in-the-trenches series.

            In sum, the type AV undervalues to the point where it’s less counterintuitive than self-defeating. His Canucks? Please. They were better built for the Swedish Elite League.

            I have a Mohawk girlfriend: Deb. Big bosomy brunette; unfortunately a Habs fan.

            At the trade deadline I sandbagged her GM, Marc Bergevin. I said to Deb: “Your GM’s building a great club. Albeit for the early 90s. Steve Ott? Jordy Benn?… Martinsen?”

            But Bergevin’s operating mindset–informed by more than a few early series street fights with the Bruins–was nothing if not bare knuckles tactical. Short-term.

            Bang and elbow and scrum your way into the discussion. Short on skill he loaded up with grit. Tenacity.

            Bergevin’s club won’t win The Cup. He and ownership know that. But they’re capable of dispatching a more skilled, far less engaged club.

          • AV loves tacos for players!!!!! Hit them with your purse types, ala Stepan, who checks like a guy named Murray Hall, in the early 70’s, complete wimp!!!!!!!!

          • Give me an esa tikkanen, a claude lemieux, a sean avery and I will beat a lot of more talented teams……….
            add them to an already talented team and they will win some cups!!!!!

            Put Dubi back on this team instead of stepen and it would change the entire mindset of this team……just like he has done to the blue jackets…..

            McIrath would have been the perfect 3rd pair defenseman for this team….rarely does a team win a cup without a couple of these types!!!!

          • Dubi and Mcllrath, what the hell have they won, pass that stuff along my friend, it is clearly good!

          • Nash? You are bad mouthing Nash?? That is such a moronic statement. Nash is likely the most valuable player beyond Hank (maybe Mac). I don’t know what games you have been watching. If everyone played like Nash this series would be a sweep. I have little doubt we will win this series anyway. The Kreider/Stepan/Zuke line better start contributing. And speaking of Zuke – your boy’s behavior cost us big time in the penalty box – all of a sudden he is some tough guy? Please stop emulating Gallagher and Marchand and play with your head!

            As much as I would like to see Clendening in there – I think Kampher is the better choice to sit Holden. But overall I have no complaints. We will win this series. I love the fact that Vesey is playing with Nash and Z-Man. Shake it off boys and put those shots on the net….

          • I think Nash is afraid of checking because shied away from hitting anybody. He may have scored but he was a shell of himself.

          • Exactly right. Nash is easily our best forward, and it’s not even close.

          • Foolishness!! Nash is by far THE best forward on the Rangers club, without a doubt, unequivocally! If you don’t see that, you must be blind. He plays hard in every zone, and never let’s up!

          • Hey pal!!

            Yes they all stopped playing i9n the 3rd. All of a sudden, the passing break outs out of the D zone stopped and that mindless “chipping” started. SEVEN ICINGS IN THE 3RD PERIOD. Atrocious, so yeah, the forwards take blame as well.

            But, once again, the coach shows that his in game management sucks beyond belief given his stellar REGULAR SEASON record. He’s not a Cup worthy coach IMO and if the Rangers are ever going to win it with him on the bench then they will in spite of him, not because of him.

            Funny how Phil Jackson has 5 rings but can’t get a team he is in charge of to play .500 basketball. Sucks when you don’t have the best players in the league, because then you actually have to be a good strategist to win. I could care less about the Knicks but I said it from the beginning that re-signing Carmelo was a huge gaffe and would ruin the team.

          • Your Phil Jackson point just proved my point. Jax cant do a thing with this team and likely wouldn’t do any better if he were coaching it. He won in Chicago and LA because he had brilliant future HOF talent. Give AV a roster like they’ve had in Chicago, Pit and Washington these last few years, and he will win.

            You’re right, AV is not a Cup worthy coach–when he has a roster that isn’t Cup worthy. He’s had rosters that were good enough to make deep playoff runs, but no superstars to coach other than the goalie.

            Coach Q likely wouldn’t win with this current roster either. Coach Babs had real good teams in Detroit in his final six seasons, but couldn’t get his good but no longer great teams past the second round. Did he suddenly become a non-Cup worthy coach?

          • E3

            There you go again!!!!!! What would you call the Sedin twins?????

            By the way, the NHL channel had a show rating the 30 best coaches in the NHL history. #1 Scotty Bowman, #2 Al Arbour, #4 Quenneville, #6 Sather, #20 Torts, and #26 AV, that from a bunch of so called experts. Let’s see if your man gets into the HOF???????

            I had to tweak you there big guy………

          • Well, maybe the Rangers should put Sather back behind the bench!

            I’d go with Torts too slightly ahead of AV. After all, he did win a Cup. But both of their careers are not over yet. That Cup was a long time ago, and post-lockout, his playoff record has been pretty mediocre. And barring an epic turnaround in his series, he’s looking at another early ouster. AV has by every measure been the more effective coach the past decade.

            Also if we go with that poll then we should also go with the poll in pre-season of the top 50 NHL players–and not a single Rangers forward was on that list. Not one.

            The Vancouver debate is a fair one. But in NY, the roster has not exactly been star studded.

          • E3, we’ve had this discussion many times. Whether AV has the roster or not is one thing, but how do you know if they’re capable of winning or not when the coach is not doing his job correctly?

            Again, maybe they don’t win it anyway but isn’t the coach’s job to put the team in the best position to win? He doesn’t do that and proves it time after time after time.

            G had a good game in Game 1. But how was he in Game 2? Not nearly as good. The aimless flings of the puck out the D zone reared its ugly head again. 7 icings in the 3rd. That’s a disgrace. And most of them were dumb and unnecessary. Lazy is the word.

            Holden needs to sit and AV needs to ride the top 4, period.

            As for Jackson, resigning Carmelo is beyond dumb. He makes none of teammates better. And you see the results.

          • Richter-

            I have a post awaiting moderation that addresses this. But for the sake of time, here it is, but without the supporting attachment.


            It is more than fair to question the defensive deployment there. The problem is we are dealing with limited info. What was the situation with Skjei/Smith at that time. Were they gassed? Did Holden/Staal have fresher legs? Was that Beuke’s call or AV’s? Once the decision was made, hard to change it. There was no timeout available. That decision may well have happened against AV’s wishes. We will never know.

            There are always decisions that can be questioned by any coach after any playoff loss. Torts was questioned (“Stop coaching Pat”) often and rightly so. Keenan would do bizarre things al the time.

            Check out this article in The Hockey News following Game 1


            Julien was taken to the woodshed here. Maybe all these coaches are clueless. ?

          • E3, ok I will give you that we do not know the circumstances at any given time of the game.

            BUT, have you watched Holden? He plants himself in front of Henrik, screens him, blocks his movement, and does nothing to stop the Habs anyway.

            The Skjei/Smith pairing played 2 minutes in the last 11 minutes. Gassed? You tell me. But forget about them. How about McD? Again, it’s the playoffs, he should be playing near 30 minutes per game. He’s their best D man by far and you ride your best D man because it’s lose and go home.

            The issues I have with the coach is that he makes mind boggling decisions, not just questionable ones. We can all be “Monday Morning QB.” I get that. But he has made “decisions” that defy all reasonable logic and it constantly bites them in the ass. Yes, Beuk shares in this as well.

            I’ve seen it all year. When people were throwing praises at Holden, I was trashing him because he’s terrible on the D side. Not bad, but terrible. You see it out in the open now. But yet, he plays minutes when the game is on the line. Hence, 1-1 instead of 2-0.

          • Fair, but again I will point out, I really don’t think Holden was the key reason why we couldn’t hold on there. He got the puck up to Grabner. Grabner for some reason hesitated. If he’s on the puck he clears the zone and it’s likely game over. They all were gassed it seemed.

            Then the cross check that resulted in a broken stick may have been ill advised, but how many times do we see defenseman do that? That was just bad luck. If he doesn’t break his stick, they probably don’t tie the game. Just like if Hank doesn’t have his stick broken, they don’t get the first goal.

            Sometimes, the hockey gods aren’t in your corner.

            Now, the bigger picture question is–should Holden be in the lineup? That depends on assessment of the remaining options.

            Clendo? No way. Hasn’t played much and when he has, really hasn’t been as good as his fancy stats suggest he is. I think he’s a defensive nightmare. And all five organizations that have already given up on him never played him in he playoffs. Seems like a way too risky move that’s more likely to backfire.

            Klein? If he’s healthy, with his playoff experience and the fact he likes to play physical, I’d go with him for sure. But the question is, IS he healthy?

            Kampfer? Solid, seemingly safe choice, at least on the surface. AV seems to like him. But he’s never played in a SC Playoff game. He is ready for that assignment?

            So yes, I would definitely hope AV would sit Holden. But I won’t kill him for him if he doesnt because he simply doesn’t have any other better option at the moment.

      • He’s bad, and you’re right, just giving it away freely. Pick a D man to replace him, Kampfer, Clendening, you, me, anyone.

    • the D was better cuase the forwards chipped in for once , they didn’t last night and went back to AV’s original season long speed game

      • I get it, but after 10 minutes of Game 2 I said to my wife that the D was “back to their old tricks again.” Meaning their coverage was showing gaping holes again.

        McD and Skjei have been outstanding, Smith very good, G has been ok, and Staal/Holden have been awful, with Staal better than Holden, which isn’t saying much. Holden is totally lost out there and plants himself in front of the King, close enough to be a nice hindrance for Henrik. I would rather see Kampfer or Clendening in.

        • agree … we’ll see if the coach can coach on home ice tonight …. he hasnt done too good of a job matching lines the past 15-20 home games !

          • LOL, so funny it’s true bro. Tonight is a must game. I can’t imagine them going into Tuesday down 2-1 with their sucky home record lately. Mental suicide.

    • C’mon paisan. Stepan’s a great choice… I mean for The 4H Club. Or Big Brothers.

      Inasmuch, you and I know Captain Not Courageous should’ve been moved last season. Or this.

      While you pined for Shattenkirk, Gorton and staff should’ve sent Stepan home to Minnesota. Matt Dumba or Marco Scandella come our way.

      Then this abysmal Nick Holden dialogue never unfolds.

      • Shatty is coming bro but the Rangers need another D anyway. I am all for Stepan returning home for either one of those D, probably Scandella because the cap hits are closer together. I still pine for Trouba though, lol.

  • The Canadians played the third period in desperation. They earned the win, hands down. They out shot the Rangers by a good margin, but the Rangers could have won it. I thought the Rangers played very well for two thirds of the game, but that’s playoff hockey. I’m more concerned with the Rangers playing at home, then away. Hopefully, Sunday will be a good game and a victory!

    • Going to be hard to watch them at home for me. I see no reason for them to suddenly change their MO at home where they have been terrible. They play at home a lot like they did in Montreal more afraid to lose then trying to win. Then again when you lose that much at home I guess it is hard to stop. Was at 3 of those losses, all winnable games, all felt like they were thrown away. They are a very different team with the lead and I blame a lot of that on AV. They never go for 2 goal lead. Only thing I am surprised about the tying goal and the game winner in Montreal is that neither one was off one of the NYR players….

  • Questions? Why was Holden on the ice for the last 60 seconds? Why was Holden cross checking the guy with the puck on the boards. Why didn’t Holden use his body not his stick? The puck was down low along the boards? When are some guys going to toughen up? Stepan. No question that Mats Zuccarello is a MAN. HEART. PASSION. SKILL. NO FEAR. He is a driver not a passenger other guys need to drive to.

    • Stepan is SOFT. There are too many soft players on defense. That is why the Rangers will be out of the playoffs quickly.

      • has anyone noticed why holden was without his stick just before Montreal scored with 17 secons to go? he broke his stick slashing galaghers leg. holden has to sit

  • That loss was heartbreaking and frustrating, to lose like that in the last 17 seconds.

    A few things…

    1. If we make any sort of a run this spring, expect more nights like that. The rangers have never been great at taking advantages of opportunities, how many times have we gone to 7 games in the last 11 years??

    2. Paging Kreider. Where are you? He needs to be our X-factor. He’s our biggest, strongest and fastest forward and he’s been invisible the last two games. Mika too, I like him a lot but I barely noticed him in the first 30 mins of the game.

    3. This is not last years team, which to me, is encouraging. Stats aside and just from my eye test, they’re playing tough playoff hockey, finishing their checks and not backing down to Montreal as much as I thought they would. I dunno what the rest of the series will bring us but they’re fighting hard which is at least a nice turnaround from last years debacle.

    Montreal NEEDED that game last night which is why the third period went the way it did. They were much more desperate than the Rangers, OT too, we could of had a couple of odd man rushes but were completely exhausted. The playoffs are such highs and lows. I’m gonna prob be miserable for the next 48 hours. I dunno how I’m supposed to function as a human during these series. Rant over…


  • So simple a game….
    We lost because the canadians hit/ interfered with, crashed into hank all game…….We never touched carey price…..
    Bobby B was right- julien’s bruins did the same thing to AV’s canuks several years ago-pound the better team into submission……
    Rangers are bigger, faster more talented –apparently however our idiotic coach does not understand what it takes to win in the playoffs!
    We need to be physical and NASTY……gallagher and ott need to be targeted and price needs to be run into like hanks gets.!!!!
    Kreider , Nash, Hayes, Stepan need to HIT and play with the passion and fire and tenacity of Zucc and Miller…
    AND for only miller to respond to the Ott’s illegal hit on zucc is criminal….
    You cant let a team run your best players!!!!!!!
    Maybe the coach can remind stepan to cover his defensive assignment in the slot [gallaghers goal]…stepan give a ways, bad passes, shots missed net…
    Sit Holden and Stepan —-send the message coach!!!!!!

    • Rich….Stepan assisted on the go-ahead goal. What you are suggesting is total insanity, and any coach who did that would be fired.

      Kreider needs to show up, and so far he’s been a huge disappointment. Mika was not good. Hayes was invisible yet again and has been for two months now. Miller played with heart but ultimately isn’t getting it done. More is needed from our so-called elite players.

      Take a breath everyone. The Habs scored their three regulation goals because–

      1) Hank had his stick broken and chaos ensued. Fluke.

      2) Kreider mishandles a pass in the neutral zone, leads to a turnover, results in a goal. Not a fluke but not a typical occurrence with Kreider (he’s overrated out here but he’s usually fundamentally sound)

      3) Holden cross-checks his man near the crease with seconds to go. A pretty standard occurrence. Except he breaks his stick and he is unable to defend on the tying goal. Fluke.

      Two flukes and an atypical play. Plain and simple. It’s hockey. Stuff happens.

      Now, as for Holden, I certainly think a change may be in the offing. Is Klein healthy enough to play? If so, I would play him. Kampfer? Maybe. Fundamentally sound player. Clendo? No way. He would get exposed badly.

      Again, on the deployment late in the game, this is the usual knee jerk overblown narrative. The third period evolved as it did because our supposed high end skill “stars” couldn’t gain possession of the puck and kept icing it. The icings took their toll. And once that toll is taken, deployment decisions change. It becomes more about fresh legs than anything else.

      Holden and Staal came on the ice with about 75 seconds left after a defensive shift by McDonagh/Girardi. All that was needed in that sequence was someone to gain possession. Grabner as I recall had the chance but couldn’t do it. If he does, then we have a nice, easy change to another pair for the final seconds. There is nothing the coach can do if we can’t gain possession and clear the zone. NOTHING.

      As for the too soft narrative, I said this on the other page, it’s total nonsense. If anything, these two games proved exactly the opposite. We played two very physical games in a row and backed down from nothing. The concern is that if we double down on it, we are not playing to our strength as a team, and playing instead more to their strength.

      Take a look at the Pens-Jackets series. The Jacks are clearly winning the physical battles. But that’s not disrupting TRUE high end skill players like the Pens have. If anything, you have to wonder if Torts has overplayed the physical card here to some extent, but in fairness, that series isn’t over yet, so we will see. But the point is, you win when your best skill players play that way. Gooning it up is not the answer here.

      What we are also seeing is what I’ve been saying for weeks. Our offensive “stars” are overrated. They can be EASILY shutdown by quality teams you meet in the playoffs. We don’t have players that can take over games. The fact is..,they have Max P…we have no one like that. Weber is a beast who has totally neutralized Kreider (which unfortunately, great players and good teams do pretty easily with Kreider). McDonagh is a very good player but he’s no Weber. The one star we have is Hank, but unfortunately Price is his equal. So we have no real edge here.

      The Rangers have played in 20 playoff series since the 2004-05 lockout. With the exception of Renney’s two playoff series wins, and AV’s vs the Pens, these series are always Armageddon and go at 6-7 games (heck, even AVs 5-game win over the Pens two years ago was a war). We never have easy series…ever. Why? Because we have good but not great players who aren’t capable of dominating playoff caliber teams. So it’s hardly a surprise to see what happened last night.

      It’s 1-1, heading home. Exactly what probably 95% of the experts would have expected. I still think the Habs are the better team, but IF (and it’s a big IF) the Rangers best players actually show up, then we can definitely win this series.

      • The Habs flooded the Rangers zone and exposed their weakness…the breakout. The Blueshirts handled the puck like it was a hand gernade in their own zone last night.
        Puck support was not there and this needs to address by Av in the room. Hockey is a team sport and when the Rangers are skating and creating passing and skating lanes for each other they are a very good club.

      • 3E,
        Too many mind!!

        Again-We lost because the canadians interfered with, crashed into hank all game, all their goals were screens…..
        Impossible to stop the puck when you cant see it because the opposition is crowding/interfering with you…..
        And not surprisingly –We never touched carey price!!!!!!…..
        If we dont get physical we will lost to a smaller, slower , less talented teams [stated by brendon smith during game interview]

        Eddie, if you can rewatch the game focus on stepan and see how many shots he had that missed the net resulting in habs rush the other way……..see how many of his passes were intercepted… many times he simply ‘lost ‘ the puck in off end…..and his failure to cover gallagher in the high slot [ centers assignment!] led to a goal!
        And not surprisingly hank was screened by canadian player! He did however have I think 3 hits….

        Kreider [one of my favorites] absolutely stunk also! as did nash….these two 6-3-6-4,monsters should be crushing the smaller canadians and setting up camp in front of carey prices crease…
        Along with hayes they are the biggest players on the ice [ besides weber and king]….They play small …..

        Totally disagree regarding miller–he was an absolute beast, [like zucc and smith- a keeper ] hitting carrying the puck, making plays, defending zucc, winning faceoffs, ……but like zucc his linemate hayes could have been better…you heard millers name all night long like you did zuccs, hanks,and gallaghers….that shows who is dominating the ice….

        Bobby B made great analogy -julien’s bruins did the same thing to AV’s canuks several years ago-pound the better team into submission……crash goalie etcetc

        The most important real estate on the ice is right outside each teams goal crease…..who ever owns them usually wins….it is that simple, especially in the playoffs…

        Hanks stick was broke because of and by gallegher when he skated through the crease!!!! Untouched of course!!!! Cup winning teams dont let that happen! Did you see the game on msg, they showed a compilation of rangers canadians games and how many times gallagher runs into Hank!!!??????

        AV’s lack of respect for the physicality of the game is why his talented teams NEVER win and usually get upset by lesser more physical teams. This team needs to play with fire and passion and anger or we will be one and done!

        In all seriousness considering the dumpster fire Holden is ..can you honestly say that holden is/ was better than McIlrath????

        Was a great game to watch as stanley cup game always are!!!1

        • Holy cow! I don’t even know what to tell you on this! But I will try!

          The Rangers played probably the two most physical playoff games they’ve played in a decade. They more than competed in that regard and didn’t back down. That wasn’t the issue.

          To blame Hank’s stick being broke on a lack of physicality is just absurd, sorry. It was a fluky play.

          I’m not saying Stepan was good. But you don’t bench your top line center unless its your goal to be fired. And at least he has an assist, which is one more point than JT (overrated untouchable elite beast) Miller!

          As i said yesterday, your bar is pretty low on what a “beast” is. Did Miller play with heart and hustle? Yes.

          But forgotten in all this was his almost fatal pass in the defensive zone when he was in the corner and flung it out front where it would have been an easy scoring chance….he still makes serious bonehead decisions that should be out of his game at this point…which is why he not a player you can truly count on yet.

          A player who’s there to put up points cant be considered a playoff beast when his scoring line reads 0-0-0! That’s fine for a fourth line player, but FAR more is needed from our so-called elite, untouchable star.

          However, I was definitely impressed with his compete level.

          How can you say Nash stunk? He was terrific out there most of the game. Obviously, the OT turnover was unfortunate, but he’s been the Rangers best forward BY FAR thus far in this series.

          Bruins beat the Canucks primarily because Tim Thomas had the greatest series any goalie has had in the past decade, and Luongo was awful. The other stuff is overblown.

          The Jackets are wining the physical battles in their series. Yet the Pens lead the series 2-0. When you have real legit skill like the Pens have and we don’t, that skill trumps phisycality all day every day. When you have lesser skill players like the Rangers, good teams are more than capable of neutralizing them–physical or not. You are vastly overrating the talent on this team. They are good but not great players that produce good but not great results. Thus, a 1-1 series.

          AV has won five playoff series as Rangers coach, two more than the supposedly more “physically minded” Torts. He has made deep runs playing this style and as Rangers coach, he’s beaten far more talented teams in the Pens and Caps. He’s yet to lose to a team that in my view he should have beaten–not as Rangers coach anyway. The only playoff “failure” in this era happpened under Torts’ reign in the loss to an inferior Devils team. Your statement about AV NEVER winning and USUALLY getting upset is flat out false.

          The one thing that was NOT lacking on the ice from the Rangers these last two games has been fire and passion. That’s hardly the issue here. Our supposed stars need to create more scoring chances and finish on them. In that regard, there was game to game improvement. They now know they can beat Price. So maybe if your “Beastie Boy” Miller would use his supposed elite skill to capitalize on scoring chances, then we might have a chance here! 🙂

          As for Dylan “Minor League” McIlrath, I prefer to limit my discussions to NHL players, not marginal AHL players with a -4 on one of the best teams in that league. 🙂

          But that being said, they need to take a look at their options as it pertains to defense and consider replacing Holden.

          • Of course not, you missed the point—–that is, the so called experts are just guessing and in some cases wrongly…..

            I compare mcilrath to holden!!!!!

          • As far as 95% of experts regarding McIlrath—-

            I was there when 29 experts including the ny jets passed on dan marino!

            That’s a pretty obvious and blatant comparison of McIlrath to Marino. Where exactly is Holden mentioned there?

            And then you mention Tom Brady and Henrik Lundqvist before you mention Holden.

            I didn’t miss anything. I have no idea what you meant but that’s what you wrote.

          • Sorry Roadrider for the confusion…

            I was responding to S3E comments …
            we disagree as to who is better/worse….holden or mcilrath……

            My overall point was that many GM’s are clueless……

          • 3E,
            Do you think its easier to play goalie while being interfered with or when you are left alone?
            If you were the coach how would you rectify this?
            Do you think hank outplayed price last night?
            Weren’t rangers 3 goals easier to stop since there was no screens?

            [Tim Thomas ‘outplayed’ luongo because of the same reason price ‘outplayed’ hank last night.] One team interferes with and hits the goalie at every opportunity and one team doesn’t. [ one team has AV as a coach and one doesn’t]

            If AV fails to advance with another 100 point team iis it not considered a disappointment?

            CBJ have nowhere close to the talent Pitts has….We I believe as does brendon smith, have more talent, speed , size……

            I am a nash fan as well as kreider but i must be fair, our two most talented forwards are not playing up to par!
            Dont forget it was nash who lost the puck leading to the OT goal and stepan who failed to cover in slot leading to habs 2nd/ goal…..kreider just stunk….

          • So now Columbus doesnt have the talent? Did you feel the same last year about the Rangers when they played the Pens?

            I can see it now. If the Pens beat the Jackets, it will surely be because of their superior talent. But when the Rangers lost last year, clearly, it was because we were out coached.

            Got to love fans… in fanatics. 🙂

            This Ranger team is a 100 point playing another 100 point team. They were supposed to be barely a playoff team. Their talent is good but not great. It’s not as if they are playing a low 90s team that barely qualified. So no, why would it be a major disappointment?

            All you need to know about Gorton’s expectations for this team this year–he gives AV a massive extension and pay raise mid-season, and he makes a marginal trade at the deadline as opposed to the usual blockbuster.

            You yourself have said that Miller/Hayes/Kreider are all part of a young promising future. But they aren’t elite players today. And upper management knows that.

            I’m always disappointed about an early exit, sure. But this team to go deep in the playoffs would frankly be stunning. The defense is just ordinary, and the offense hasn’t been explosive in two months.

          • 3E
            First off I truly believe we are a superior team to the canadians…….we should win easily!
            Pitts is way better than the CBJ, they should win easily……
            Last years pitts was better than us but not by that much, so I cant blame it all on coaching, but as I have said before AV cannot ever win as an underdog and frequently loses as a favorite!

            Gortons expectations? you are making presumptions neither of us can know.

            Kreider looked like he was developing into an elite player but lately……not!
            Miller had a terrific game….what were you watching?
            Hayes also part of my future hopes….better than stepan but thats not saying much…..

            you didn’t answer my questions—so here they are again—
            Do you think its easier to play goalie while being interfered with or when you are left alone?
            If you were the coach how would you rectify this?
            Do you think hank outplayed price last night?
            Weren’t rangers 3 goals easier to stop since there was no screens?

            [Tim Thomas ‘outplayed’ luongo because of the same reason price ‘outplayed’ hank last night.] One team interferes with and hits the goalie at every opportunity and one team doesn’t. [ one team has AV as a coach and one doesn’t]

            Totally agree with your last paragraph…..but we should beat this team……

          • Got to tip my hat to you, Eddie-Fidel-Chavez.

            Notwithstanding the staggering scale of your Mother of All Bomb posts, you brought necessary if not clear-eyed context via the above closer.

            I, at 54, a Ranger fan of four decades now means nothing if not consistently diminished expectations.

            Like you, I only hope for a deep run. Inasmuch, I’d be over the moon if we took The Habs, or at least took the battle to them.

            For three or four years running, Stan Bowman’s club is built for three rounds. Bob Murray has done likewise. Slats and Jeff Gorton have not.

            You simply need to scan up to Anthony/Richter’s post with regards to lineup choices on the back line should Nick Holden sit.

            As Gertrude Stein once famously said, “There ain’t no there there.”

          • Fotiu, you are hands down my favorite writer, even when we disagree. Brilliant!

          • Rich-

            Again, I fear you are grossly overrating our talent.

            So you really believe last year’s Rangers team, with a weak defense and nowhere near the depth we have this year, was a BETTER team than this year’s CBJ team? And, let’s not forget we were playing the Pens when they were red hot and healhty. The Jackets are playing an injury riddled team. Respectfully, I doubt many if any NHL execs would concur.

            Yes, on Gorton, I am surmising. No one knows for sure. But if you connect the dots, I would say my hypothesis is pretty likely to be true. Why re-sign AV if he was on any kind of hot seat to win now? You yourself have said this team has flaws that need to be addressed. They made no major trades to really upgrade. Doesn’t sound like a win or else scenario to me, right?

            On your questions, they are fair. I cant answer that. The team is the team. It was built by the last two GMs. It is flawed but it is evolving. You have to play the hand you are dealt. What heavy net crashers have the Rangers passed on that they should have had (please limit your answers to NHL players please). 🙂

            I think most NHL experts believe the Habs are better. Their high end talent is better than ours. That’s key. We lost a big game player in Brassard for a guy with upside who’s still apparently struggling following his injury. That’s also key.

            We certainly CAN beat this team. But SHOULD beat this team? As said, I think you are in a minority opinion on this.

            Ok, I tried to answer your questions. How about responding to my post questioning the validity of your Marino/Brady vs McIlrath comparison. As I said…apples to oranges. Do you not agree? if not, why not?

          • Not sure of the question you asked but as far as the mcilrath / brady comparison my point was that I do not believe most GM’s have any more insight or knowledge when picking or trading players than we do, I do not think mcilrath will develop into an nhl’er anywhere close to the talent of a brady…..

            .its a crapshoot, and just because they are working as GM’s doesn’t mean they are any smarter than the rest of us… examples—-sather letting strallman walk and signing dan boyle……what was he smoking in his cigar? or the NY mets letting murphy walk away , their best pure hitter the past 5 years and almost wins triple crown for nationals…..

            and from what I have seen and what the stats bore out McIlrath was our 3 rd rated defenseman in the games he played…..and we may never know if he would have developed here but he certainly was better than holden, by a lot!!!!

            Good talking! Will we win tomorrow?

      • As far as 95% of experts regarding McIlrath—-

        I was there when 29 experts including the ny jets passed on dan marino!

        I wasn’t there when 32 experts passed on tom brady for 5 rounds!

        Lunqvist was what 4th rd pick?

        Why is holden in the league? Why is he playing?

        Here are some former gm’s- milberry, esposito, …..

        I believe in many cases they know LESS than the passionate, knowledgeable fan .Their goal is primarily to keep their job , the owner happy ,secondly to win…..

        • Rich-

          I’m glad you brought this point up again because I did address it a few weeks back but not sure if you saw it. Your comparison here is flawed. You are absolutely correct when you say that player evaluation is an inexact science that even the experts dont always get right. But that primarily happens when you are trying to forecast a college player, or a high school player, a junior player (depending on the sport we are talking about). I agree, on that level, there are tons of examples of players that wer drafted high and were busts (like McIlrath thus far) or drafted low like Hank (7th round actually) who are on their way to the HOF.

          But what you RARELY see is a player that was drafted, was developed in the organization, DID get a chance to play significant minutes, got re-signed by the team, then was waived not once but twice and failed to crack an NHL lineup on three teams in one season–that that evaluation proves to be a mistake. Can you think of any? I can’t.

          Once you make it to the major league of your sport, you are no longer a prospect really. You’ve arrived to an extent. Teams see you play vs other NHL (or whatever) competition. You can talk about the Milburys and Espos all you want, but that’s just two guys. All 29 other teams passed…TWICE. Are they all clueless idiots?

          Similarly, teams may have passed on Tom Brady and Dan Marino in the draft. But once they made it to the pros, even in a small sample of games, do you think if those players had been waived, that they would go unclaimed–twice???? In short order, it became clear once they became NFL players those guys were better than they were originally perceived to be.

          Now, again, for the record, I am NOT saying McIlrath wont eventually be what you think he can be. Some players arrive late. That happens. The point is that right now…here and now, he is NOT an NHL player. Next year? We shall see.

      • Eddie, great summary but as I pointed out last night, when Hank lost his stick the Rangers needed to ice it or go offside to get a whistle. They didn’t. So yes, a fluke thing but they could have handled it better.

        Also, when Holden broke his stick before the Plekanec goal he needs to get his body on the guy, even take a penalty, to prevent him from getting his stick on the puck. He was hardly “unable to defend”. He just didn’t.

        Totally agree that the Rangers’ “stars” (most are nice players but not stars) have not lived up to their reps so far in this series and have failed to make the important plays, like clearing the puck out of the zone, that could have made all the difference last night.

      • Yeah, yeah, yeah – we’ve heard this “Rangers aren’t talented enough” rant ad nauseam from you. Doesn’t change the fact that the Rangers deployed a sit back approach in the 3rd and were seconds from being up 2-0 and that is equally on the coaching as it is on our invisible players (Stepan, Kreider, Hayes & Mika).

        Holden is God awful and needs to be in street clothes & hopefully played his last Ranger game last night.

        • And yet they didn’t employ that in Game 1. Maybe the circumstances of the game had something to do with that. Sometimes, the other team beats you and it doesnt always (or even usually) mean they choked.

          Did the Rangers “choke” on Zelepukin’s goal in 1994? No. The other team is playing and competing as well, which for some reason you seem to forget.

          • They choked. They sat back and prayed that 20 minutes would tick away and did nothing to counter or look for an insurance goal.

            Sorry, no other game against the Habs this year demonstrated they were just that far and away that superior to keep the Rangers hemmed in their own end for nearly 40 minutes. They played to not lose instead of trying to win, and it probably cost them the series.

          • Just watched the Senators come back down two in the third to beat the Bruins. Bruins stopped attacking and went into a “shell”. They lose the game in OT. Guess they choked too. All these pro athletes just “choke the chicken” as Walt would say when the going gets tough right? I mean, these guys are the greatest at what they do in the world, but clearly most of these guys got as far as they did because they just wilt under pressure, right?

            Or maybe, Ottawa, like Montreal last night, was the more desperate team in the third period and simply found a way.

            Boston and Ottawa. NY and Montreal. Two pretty much dead even teams point wise. Series tied at 1-1 in both. What a shock!!!!!

          • E3

            I’m still waiting for my royalties check for the use of my famous expression!!!! LOL

      • “1) Hank had his stick broken and chaos ensued. Fluke.” …. not an issue if someone races to the bench and gets him one …. idiots…. players on ice knew, players on bench should have known, backup goalie, coaches and trainers and equipment personnel should have known … someone has to get a stick that should have been hanging over the from the bench and go balls out back to Hank with it!!!

          • No he can’t. All they can do is give Hank their own stick, relatively useless for a goaltender.

          • .
            10.4 Broken Stick – Goalkeeper – A goalkeeper may continue to play with a broken stick until a stoppage of play or until he has one legally handed to him by a teammate. The teammate must hand the stick to him. He cannot throw it or slide it to the goalkeeper (this includes situations where the goalkeeper has lost his stick and a teammate is trying to return it to him). For a violation of this rule, a minor penalty for throwing the stick shall be assessed to the offending player (no penalty to the goalkeeper for receiving the stick).

      • E3

        Please do me a favor, stop with our so called elite players. You’re the only one who calls them that, and then says we have no elite players, so what’s doing?????? Same for the untouchables, I’ve never read that from any other poster, maybe I’m missing something????????

        As for the guys not showing up, spot on there, can’t or won’t argue that at all!!!!!!!!!!

        • It’s a playful jab at my friend Rich (and a few others) who believes we are loaded with high end talent Walt. At the trade deadline, Miller, Hayes and Kreider were all labeled as untouchables out here, when to me that term is used for the McDavids, Matthews and Eichels of the world.

          Just a little playful sarcasm. 🙂

  • My question was did the Rangers quit on AV. It sure does look that Kreider has and I don’t blame him. Zucc, Miller, and Hank were awesome.

    • What universe do you people live in? It’s the f@#$%ing playoffs. First round. Second game. What professional players are out there quitting on their coaches?

      I’ll tell you this, if any Rangers quit on this coach at this point in the season, I don’t want them. Show them the door.

      • Thank you Chris for bringing some sanity. The reports from the Bizarro World are always entertaining though. 🙂

        • Thank you, I know everything E3 and stupid F. No one can have a different opinion.
          When someone does not give 100%, questions may arise. E3 you are the bizarro f.
          F u and the horse you came on.

          • All opinions are worthwhile. So if you believe in yours so strongly, please, I encourage you to call and give them on NHL Network Radio to see what they say. I would have no problem whatsoever using my real name and saying everything I have said on the radio. Would you do the same?

          • Sammy baby
            What did I say that was wrong?
            Did Kreider, my favorite player play with heart?
            F u 2!

          • What you said wrong is the FU bullshit. You can have your opinion but when you start that other punk shit it’s a different story. I would slap the shit out of you if you said it to my face. So go shit in your hat you punk

          • WOW, I just have to say, I was banished for a year because of much less, good to see the managers have embraced free speech

          • Hey Underscore,
            It was obvious, Kreider was in la la land during the game……he was playing at 1/2 speed….why?……can absolutely be debated and your assumption is as valid as anyone’s…..

            No matter the reason its the AV’s job to get them to play at a high level !

            Dont let these guys get to you , I look it as a privilege to help educate them on hockey matters since they sometimes know not what they say!!!!

            What players quit on their coaches?…..1/2 of every team tortorella ever coached, 1/2 the NBA players at times , most NFL players after they are out of the playoffs incl superstars etc etc…..

          • I know I did not over react. I stated something reasonable. I know I hit a sensitive subject when I see the responses from losers who call other people Bizarro for questioning someone’s effort and maybe loyalty to the coach.
            I was calling out a player who did not play with heart like JT and Zucc.

          • Rich, sorry, but that’s absurd. Are you and Score saying that in Game 1 the Rangers PLAYED for their coach, and then suddenly, out of the blue, in the third period of Game 2, they said, nah, not playing for the coach? Sorry, that’s what i said before….a bizarro land comment.

            Of course coaches can and do lose rooms eventually. Torts it was reported lost a portion of the room in 2013 when he was canned. Roger Nielson lost the room (or Messier at least) and was canned. Keenan lost the room in St. Louis. You are right, it does happen. But it is a cumulative thing that happens over time, not game to game or period to period. Perhaps Therrien lost the room after his lengthy losing streak in Montreal, but not because of one bad period or a singular loss.

            AV will one day lose the room, and maybe sooner rather than later. That’s always possible. But that NEVER happens in one singular moment. THAT is what I was objecting to, and I suspect that anyone involved in the sport would wholeheartedly agree with that.

          • 3E ,
            please re read my comment….I said he was in lala land…..and no one knows why…….never the less the opinion that “he quit’ on his coach is as valid as any other opinion,,,,thats why its opinion and not ‘fact’…..

            Why do you keep avoiding answering my questions????? I am curious to know your ‘opinion ‘ as to why you think the rangers wont protect hank and let him get run ….and never touch price……
            Do you think its easier to play goalie while being interfered with or when you are left alone?
            If you were the coach how would you rectify this?
            Do you think hank outplayed price last night?
            Weren’t rangers 3 goals easier to stop since there was no screens?

          • I wasn’t avoiding you my friend. Was a busy day of “honey do” list tasks that needed to be done today and now just catching up. Response above.

          • On the quitting on the coach thing, yes of course it’s opinion. But that’s as far out of a premise as I’ve ever heard. No one quits on their coach in the SC Playoffs based on one period. These guys are pros that want to win.

            I can also say that they didnt play well because the equipment manager made their jock straps too tight. It would be my opinion, but equally unlikely if not absurd.

            I’m just not into these beyond the fringes conspiracy nonsense. Without facts, or at least some circumstantial evidence to suggest it’s possible, that is what will always push my buttons.

            More often that not, if it walks like a duck and quacks like duck, then it is usually a duck and not something else.

          • Also, Kreider being in “La La Land” is hardly a new phenomenon. He has been known to disappear quite often. Good but not great players do that. Doesn’t mean there’s a specific reason that goes beyond a player who simply is what he is.

          • In fact Kreider being one of my favorite players, bigger , stronger , faster and in some ways as talented as mark messier, but OBVIOUSLY lacks the scoring ability , passion and leadership and DRIVE!!!!

            My number one reason for calling for messier to coach when tortorella was fired!

          • He would have failed miserably. If he was serious about coaching, then pay your dues like everyone else and do it somewhere. There is no evidence whatsoever that he would have been effective as a head coach. Very very few superstars ever are.

        • E3. I must tell you that you and Chris F are the reason I even bother to read this blog anymore. I’m amazed at some of the views we get. Thanks for the sanity

          • Birds of a feather flock together. So everyone else should shut up so you can hear each other talk.
            You boys are the stain in the blog. Trying to shut others up.

          • Score, If I touched a nerve, I apologize. That wasn’t my intention. How is disagreeing with you trying to shut you up? And as I said earlier, it’s more than reasonable to ask if you would be willing to go on NHL Network Radio and make that exact claim using your own name. I’m simply wondering how much you REALLY believe that the loss last night was because the players actually quit on the coach.

            As a journalist, that would be quite the story to report, don’t you think?

            As I said before, I’ve never said a word out here that I wouldn’t be more than willing to say on the radio using my own name–which by the way I’ve done many times. :).

            I stand by my opinions. Would you be willing to do the same?

          • Truth seeker E3. That is not an apology. What, don’t you believe that I don’t live in Bizarro World? Did you change your mind? Is calling someone bizzare not name calling? Not offensive?
            Truth is, why would I speak to the media who would not tell the truth about Glass last year? No one is less truthful than the media, which you are happy to be associated with.
            How does truth and media co-inside? Truth and Media isn’t that an oxymoron?

          • Underscore, you really need to take a step back and try to understand how ridiculous you sound.

            There’s a lot of emotion involved in seeing your team lose. I get it. But I see people coming out of left field with the most outlandish, in my opinion, explanations for the loss. When I read comment after comment suggesting the absurd, eventually I have to chime in.

            You queried whether perhaps the players quit on AV. To me, that is imbecilic conjecture, at best. I don’t mean that as an insult to you at all. I don’t know you and would never judge you or your intelligence or qualifications as a hockey fan based on one comment, but you drew a crazy inference and it was worth deriding. As I said earlier, this is the playoffs, what these guys play for and what they put themselves on the line for all season. You better believe every single player on that team wants the Cup tenfold over how badly we as fans might want to see them win it. Kreider is coming off his best season of his career, leading the team on goals. He did that partially based on his skill, and partially based on how he was deployed, who he played with, and the minutes he was afforded. He owes some of that success to a coach who trusts him and rewards him despite inconsistency and growing pains. Now, think about this: do you really think that it is even marginally possible that coming off a game 1 win, leading 3-2 in the third period of game 2, with an opportunity to go up 2-0 in the series, anyone, let alone Kreider, thinks to himself, “You know, I’m fed up with this AV guy. We’ll never go anywhere with him. I’m drawing my line in the sand right here, and won’t continue to play for him.”

            Kreider, and others, had a quiet game. That’s not in dispute. But why would your reaction be to assume something as illogical as them giving up on their coach in their second game of the postseason while everything seemed to be going right up to that point? Why is that worth discussing, more than the players being tired, the players getting complacent thinking they had the game in the bag, the Canadiens simply being way more desperate (understandably) and snatching a victory from the jaws of defeat? Why does it always have to come back to some way of indicating the coach?

            Don’t you think, when honestly thinking about it, that there are literally dozens of better explanations for the loss the players giving up on AV?

            Seems to me, if you really believed that anyone on the team is giving up, and has made a decision to stop playing for this coach, you’d be pretty outraged at that player and call them out for such selfishness, rather than framing such a hypothetical as somehow being cause to further criticise AV.

            As I said above, if anyone quits on AV during this playoff push, I want that player gone. I don’t even care what the reason is, you don’t give up on your coach —because that’s giving up on your team— when the stakes are as high as they currently are.

            As for the rest of your strange descent into perceived oppression at the hands of dissenters, I don’t know what to tell you, dude. Get thicker skin?

          • Absolutely brilliant Chris. Couldn’t have said it better.

            Great example. In 1994, many players, perhaps most prominent Brian Leetch, had lost all respect for Keenan–especially when he essentially quit on the team while trying to orchestrate his escape in the middle of a tough playoff series that apparently got just too tough for him. The players were to a large extent fed up with him. But that didnt stop any of them from giving anything less than their best and beyond to overcome the obstacles and defeat the Devils and Canucks.

            Similarly, in 1992, Messier was deeply concerned about Roger Nielson’s ability to guide his team to the Cup. But that didn’t stop Mess and company from emptying the tank and doing their very best that Spring. Better goaltending and perhaps one less slash from Adam Graves and who knows….maybe a different outcome.

            The players were reportedly done with Torts in 2013. But I have no doubt that each and every one of them battled their tails off in that comeback win vs the Caps and even in their five game ouster to the Bruins.

            These guys LIVE for the chance to get their name on the Cup. No player is ever going to quit on their coach during the playoffs. As you said, if that happened, the player hand in his skates and find another line of work. That’s what makes the comment “bizarre”. Like you said, I cant judge a person out here…just the comment they make.

            Personally, I think it’s more likely that the equipment manager gave them jock straps that were too tight and that was the REAL cause of the loss. But that’s just me. 🙂

          • Thanks, Eddie. A lot of folks get a bit defensive when you challenge their opinions or theories. It’s not personal to let someone know that their line of thinking just doesn’t withstand basic reasoning and what we know about human nature and, in this case, professional hockey.

            I’ve held a lot of bizarre views through life, mostly due to not having enough information or not thinking through the issue well enough to see that I’m simply holding on to a viewpoint because it aligns with a wider narrative I support rather than being based on logic, facts, or actual observations. Narratives can be really powerful in shaping how you view even the most peripheral issues, but there’s no shame in recognizing you just haven’t put much thought into something.

            I’ve changed views on just about everything in life over the years, typically after someone pointed out a flaw in my perspective. I’ve never understood why so many people are resistant to rethinking things.

            But, in any case, I’m pretty sure just about no one beside Underscore mistook you calling his theory bizarre as a personal insult against whatever person lurks behind that moniker.

          • Thank you for the tone of your argument. I can accept your point of view, but don’t agree with it. My anger was about being called bizarre and a big baby. I apologize to you and not to the leftist E3.
            If everyone wanted to win the cup, we would have no questions on the effort given. Would you agree that Zucc gave it his all and Miller and Hank and Glass and some others. No question!
            When you best checking forward did not play as hard as he can its obvious something is wrong? When Nash will not check anyone, is something wrong?
            When you need 1 goal and your coach puts an offensively challenged checker and did he put the best line up to win? I can understand why a person would not give it 100%. Just look at the coaches history putting the less skilled player in and want people to do their best when he is shooting the team in the collective foot.
            I know you don’t believe it, it would not be the first time.
            Its OK for the coach to deploy the wrong players and sacrifice offense to less quality players. But players can not see that the coach does not want to win.
            If the coach wants to win , he only wants to win his way or else we shall lose with out adjusting to what is needed to win.
            He is too stubborn to adjust to win there fore sabotaging the Rangers. Obvious sabotage is seen by the players and you can not un-see what is being done.
            What I see as sabotage you see an options that went wrong or unsuccessful.
            Not playing your best players is wrong!
            We did not deserve to win the 1st game.

          • Thank you Sammy. That’s very kind of you. I will tell you though that I actually love the banter on this blog, whether we agree or not. There are some brilliant posters out here, and frankly, as Ive said before, I would rate my knowledge well below many of the folks out here…and that includes those I disagree with often. Guys like Reena, John B, Walt, even Paul who I have had all out WARS with….same for Rich and Richter, and I’m sure I’m forgetting some folks. Way more knowledgeable than me IMO. But when I respect people and I think they are wrong, I will do my best to call them out and keep them honest! 🙂

            I LOVE a good debate. And I love Rangers hockey. And, in my job I’m a seeker of truth, and like to cut through the smoke screens to attempt to be fair and get to the facts. And…..I also like to be contrary. I think that’s healhty. Walt knows my story of when I was kid, everyone booed Bob Nevin. I felt sorry for him and cheered him, and tried my best to understand why he wasn’t liked and came up with reasons why he should be!

            So since the coach is often the target out here, Fast, Girardi, Stepan, what have you, I try to balance it out with a different perspective. Creates more balance out here that way!

            Anyway, I thank you again. And stay here…it’s a great group I think….even when we disagree. 🙂

          • I love the debates. I don’t like t the Same bashing and sarcasm over and over. And the FU stuff from underwear is definitely out. Everyone is entitled to an opinion and some will disagree with others. I like the way you handle the debates. I can’t do it as well. That’s why I usually don’t even bother writing because I know someone is gonna come out with some stupid reply that they know they can get away with and I would never let it happen in person. Again I thank you

          • Sammy Baby
            You call someone a baby and you expect no retribution. F U again.
            By the way I was only defending my self. I was called a Bizarro world a few times E3 the lying truth seeker. Who could not see truth if it slapped him in the face.
            Before you call somebody names you should expect the same in return.
            I usually do not like to call people name and I usually don’t swear. Remember you started it first.
            I do expect to be banned, but it wasn’t me that started it. I hope you are banned too for your name calling and stupidity.

          • Sammy never called you anything. In fact, no one called you anything. E3 said some people live in bizzaro worlds. It’s tragic that affected you so viscerally, but honestly I think you will be OK.

          • Sammy says:
            Apr 15, 2017 at 1:39 pm
            Rangers underwear is another big baby

            Sammy never called you anything. In fact, no one called you anything.

            Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:
            Apr 15, 2017 at 12:06 pm
            Thank you Chris for bringing some sanity. The reports from the Bizarro World are always entertaining though. ?

            E3 said some people live in bizzaro worlds. It’s tragic that affected you so viscerally, but honestly I think you will be OK.

            Its was directed at me and my post. Some people try to twist the truth to justify their position but you are wrong.

          • Come on, are you saying there is nothing going on in your heartstrings when I comment? I’m saddened

    • Yes, I’m sure that’s on the mind of every rationale NHL pundit at this very moment. In fact, why don’t you call up NHL Network Radio right now and see what they all think about that. 🙂

    • His is hysterical. Let’s take Chris Kreider and break down what he has done throughout his career. He burst on to the scene in the playoffs right out of college and scored a couple big goals. Then for the next couple of seasons he turned in to a player who could look dominant with his speed, size, and willingness to drive the net. He also had a habit of disappear for long stretches to the point where you would question whether he even stepped on to the ice. Well if you were a regular to this blog during the Torts years than you would remember there was a small but very vocal group of posters that decided it was tortorellas fault for his inconsistency. The common theme was that Tortz was taking a skilled goal scorer and trying to make him a grinding checking forward to fit his type of play.

      Well tortorella was fired and AV came in. He’s a coach that couldn’t be more polar aoppisite than tortorella. You would never hear someone say that AV would favor a grinding game vs a high skilled up tempo game. Well guess what? KReider is still a gifted athlete who was given all the tools to be an elite power forward but is still prone to long stretches where you question whether he even dressed for a game.

      I’d say it has nothing to do with the coach. Kreider is what he is. He may have put up career numbers but the guy still disappears for far too long. And honestly this applies to quite a few people on this team.

      Maybe the guy is gunshy in Montreal with all the Carey Price crap that gets brought up? Either way he, along with Stepan, and Hayes, and Zib (even though he played better lastnight than the 1st game IMO), need to step up their game!

      • Finally something I can agree with you about??????? Kreider may well be gunshy up north of the border in French speaking Canada. Why wouldn’t he be, they call for penalties for looking at Price the wrong way, and because of that fan base, Kreider has a rep for crashing goalies, which is pure BS !!!!!!!!!!

      • Brilliantly done Spozo. Agree with every word. Not EVERYTHING is the coach’s fault.

        Dave Maloney said it the other day. The playoffs are a time when you need a few of your players to play “out of body”. Meaning, well above and beyond what they are about. Raising their game. Kreider, in fairness, has done that before. Stepan too. And obviously Hank usually has.

        So far Hank has certainly done his part. But we need some players to truly become beasts out there. Good to very good doesnt cut it this time of year. Need a few of these guys to be truly great. Kreider is CRUCIAL if this team is to advance.

        That”s why we are, as usual, tied 1-1 as opposed to being up 2-0.

      • Sounds like Eddie, may be right …”good players but not great”…is that right E? Either way, it is way too early for this kind of talk, Rangers have lost one playoff game. They will win this series….

  • Not sure how accurate this is, but just read on another Ranger blog that Smith and Skjei only played 2 of the last 11 minutes in the 3rd.

    I’m not one of the guys screaming for AV’s head, but his handling of the 3rd period is as a big a choke job as the players. Pathetic and unacceptable.

  • There were a lot of culprits in the loss last night. I read that too and sure, if true, then it’s a valid point. But again, I caution, we dont have all the facts and information. We dont know what was going on on the bench. We don’t know what Skjei and Smith’s conditions were at that moment. Remember, there wasn’t 30-40 seconds left. There was like 75 seconds. They may have decided to get Holden/Staal out there, then hope to make a final change with Smith/Skjei with 30 seconds left.

    Bottom line, Holden got the puck up as I recall to Grabner. Grabs hesitated. If he gets to the puck, he probably puts in the empty netter and its a win. Grabner failed there. Holden breaks his stick which you can say was stupid of just bad luck. But it happens.

    And btw, with the Rangers, this is SOP. The last 16 times the Rangers have had a chance to open up a two game margin in a playoff series, they have gone 2-14. That’s under two different coaches dating back to 2012. So it’s not about AV. It wasn’t about Torts. This team has been very good for a while now, but it’s truly GREAT teams that can bring the hammer down. The Rangers have not been and are not now a truly great team.

    And more often than not, since 2012, when the Rangers are 1-1, they finish the job (although not the last two times). No worries. Just come out ready to go in Game 3.

  • Wow. It’s an absolute dumpster fire of tired tropes and archaic strategems in here today.

    This team has played more physical these last two games than I’ve seen them play all year, and the response is for a bunch of you to grab your pitchforks and protest how wimpish they are?


    • Again you see half the story! Lots of players played very hard but not some. Don’t say the whole team played with 100% like some of the players. How physical was Kreider? If he was Physical it would be a different game.
      Stroking with a wide paint brush.
      They did not play 60 minutes! That is one of the arguments.

      • They lost control late in the game to a more desperate team. That’s going to happen sometimes. Canadiens were pretty much in a do-or-die situation. The Rangers were gassed, and thought they could hang on. A couple miscues and it’s a tied game, and that sapped them.

        There are lessons learned for sure. But they didn’t lose because they are wimps, or don’t have heart, or couldn’t muster physicality, or gave up on their coach. Those are extremely unsophisticated, emotional explanations. Making “observations” like that is just reflexive venting. It brings nothing to the table.

        By the way, Cup favorite Blackhawks, arguably top 5 team in the League in just about anybody’s view, just got hosed and are now down 2-0 in the series and heading on the road. Are they chokers? Did they quit on Quenneville?

        • Chris

          “They lost control late in the game to a more desperate team. That’s going to happen sometimes. Canadiens were pretty much in a do-or-die situation. The Rangers were gassed, and thought they could hang on. A couple miscues and it’s a tied game, and that sapped them.”

          I would agree if this happened with a few minutes left in the 3rd, but it lasted 20 minutes in the 3rd, and almost 20 in the fourth??????? There is NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO damn reason for the major let down by a so called group of professionals. Sorry my man, you’re off base a little bit on this one!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Man, the Caps just quit on Trotz, too. What’s going on this year? All these players just giving up on their coaches. So strange.

    • I know its vogue to crap on the Rangers Dmen but every NHL teams’ defence will falter when under enough pressure. The Rangers were gassed in the 3rd last night and stopped skating. Overall, I believe they are a better skating team then the Habs and if the Rangers continue to get great goal-tending from Henk, they will take the series.

      • Yeah, there are endless possible theories for last night’s loss, many of which, quite frankly, are absurd.

        But, it was apparent that the Rangers were tired after playing a real up-tempo 1st and 2nd period. And it’s fairly understandable that the Canadiens were in a desperate situation and were able to dig a little deeper and find a new gear late in the game. It really sucked to see it all slip away, but I’m not going to sit here and pretend that this is cause to write this series off. That’s nihilistic, at best.

        I agree with you that if we keep playing our game, and Hank remains in form, we take this series. The MSG curse is overblown. There wasn’t much to play for the last month or so —when the Rangers had their hellish loss streak at home—, but this is a totally different situation. Multiple players –McDonagh, Nash, Hayes, Lundqvist– have spoken about where their focus is heading back home and none of them were concerned about playing in that building. To the contrary, they seem super pumped about getting back in front of their fans. I’m more concerned about the fans in MSG than I am the players. That place better be jumping.

        • Chris

          “But, it was apparent that the Rangers were tired after playing a real up-tempo 1st and 2nd period. And it’s fairly understandable that the Canadiens were in a desperate situation and were able to dig a little deeper and find a new gear late in the game.”

          First of all Happy Easter, and secondly I’m not trying to get into a fight with you, or anyone else today. Having said that, both teams played each other two days before, and no team had to travel. Why, at this stage of the season should the Rangers, or any team be tired, and not be able to perform for an entire 40 minutes of a cup game? There is something seriously wrong for any team to have such huge swings, from game to game, and period to period.

          I know that I always put AV down, it’s in my DNA, I dislike his style, but a good coach would have said, or done something during the TV timeouts to rectify the problem, not let it get that far out of hand. There is absolutely no excuse for the last 40 minutes of play during that game. I’m not in the group that agrees the players quit on AV, but I do believe some may be beginning to tune him out, it’s an opinion, and or gut feeling!!!!!

          Now let’s hope we win the next one, and they prove me wrong. I’ll be served a huge plate of crow, and I’ll eat it all, gladly……..

  • Adam Herman posted this on Blueshirt Banter about the Skjei/Smith pairing:

    “In the final 11:13 of the third period, with the Rangers clinging to a one-goal lead, the duo played two minutes. In the final 5:50, they played 49 seconds.”

    He got these stats from “Shift something” that tracks players’ shifts during games. So now you want to tell me the COACH has no blame for his in game player management? The 2nd best D pair plays less than a minute of the final almost 6 minutes of a one goal game? So it’s clear that his PREFERENCE was to stick with Holden/Staal along with McD/G.

    Laughable. What is he watching?

  • Random thoughts:
    I am so happy Girardi is playing well. I have nothing but respect for him. Sorry Walt *S*.
    So far, “Z”, is no Brassard in the Post Season
    Zucc defines heart and courage.
    Hank has showed me, just maybe he isn’t done.
    Skjei has come into his own. Love him paired with Smith
    Rangers as a group have been more physical than I thought they could be.
    AV should dress Krieder and Hayes. Oh wait they were dressed!
    Not sure why there is some negativity on Nash, I think he’s playing great. And he actually scored.
    Forwards NEED to crowd Price more. You listening Krieder?

    Note to Jeff: You MUST find a way to protect Lindberg and Fast in the expansion draft.

    Just read Rangers signed Kamper to a two year extension. I hope it’s two years in the minors.

    • Hey pal. Maybe tell the Rangers that Price is really Lundqvist and they will be all over him, lol.

      Evidently Brooks said that Kampfer is an AV fave, so maybe AV should play him instead of Holden?

      Keider, Miller, and Hayes need to do a lot more. A lot more.

      • Happy Easter my friend.
        An AV fav. yep I’m sure he is. Another undersized D-man who is fast but can’t move dust out of the crease. I’m not a fan of any of the three, Holden, Kampfer or Clendening. I’ll take crap for saying this, but this is playoff hockey. Montreal is physical, and around the crease big time, so I’d play Klein.

        I think Miller didn’t have a bad game two. I thought he was smart when he had the puck.

        • Did you see the third period when he was in the corner in his own zone and centered the pass in front of Hank? Miller still makes far too many bad decisions.

          • Eddie, did you see me say he was perfect?
            I said IN MY OPINION, Eddie which is JUST as valid as yours, I felt he didn’t have a bad game two.

          • Oh I agree, he largely has a good game effort wise. But you said he was “smart” with the puck. That play was about as dumb as it gets and something even pee wee hockey players know not to do.

            And not at all saying your opinion is any more or less of value than mine. Just making an observation.

          • In the playoffs, effort is not always good enough. Rick Nash is the poster child for great effort and little production in the playoffs. His lack of production in the playoffs cost them in 2014. His shot goes in instead of going off Voynov’s stick then all is forgiven and maybe it’s a different series result.

          • To quote Yoda…”There is no try. Only do”.

            Agree completely. Which is why I’m not in Miller’s camp the way others are. He (and Kreider for sure) need to start producing.

            Hayes too.

        • Happy Easter my friend.

          You just nailed it. The habs found the successful formula for which the Rangers have no answer for: Crowd the King. You watch, for the rest of this series they will be all over the “blue” area. Gallagher, Radulov, Pac, etc.

          Miller is one of their top players and playing “ok” is not good enough for the Rangers to win this series. Including Kreider and Hayes.

    • Jerry

      Don’t be sorry, Danny boy has been playing well, and I should have said so earlier, my fault!!!!!!

      Richter pointed out the deployment of the defense, and man alive that was poor. Now let’s see if there are any adjustment made by the coaching staff, maybe sitting Holden, and giving Staal a lot less time out there. It’s such a shame how quickly Staal, has deteriorated with his performance since his concussion!!!!!!!

      • Happy Easter Walt!!!!!!!!!!

        The “sorry” was tongue in cheek. You and I agree on almost everything. Dan is an exception. And sure I concede, he hasn’t been very good ALL year. I just have a soft spot for the guy. Undrafted, and to achieve what he has. I just plain out like him. And I will give credit where credit is due. AV, who I am vocally not a fan of, made the right call playing him in the first two games. Holden has been bad for sure. He is much more effective when he plays the left side. As I said, playoff hockey, against a physical Montreal team, I’d dress Klien.

        Let’s hope the crowd is a bit more vocal then they have been in the recent past. I know you remember as does a few others on here….”The Monster of The Garden”. I’d like to hear the crowd a fraction of that loud.

        • Same to you my friend!!!!! As for Dan, had a wonderful career with this team, may have lost 2-3 years of that career playing for Tort’s, and his style. As a person, I like Dan, but his best years are in his rear view mirror……….

  • If AV wants to sit on a lead he should have played a trap instead of a dump and change for 20 minutes. That does not work for a whole period. AV MUST GO

    • But he wont. So enjoy watch him coach here, likely for at least one to two more seasons.

      If anyone needs to go, it’s the overrated young “superstar” talent. 🙂

      • OR conversely get a coach better suited for this “overrated young ‘superstar’ talent”.
        Much more feasible to trade a coach than a group of players.

          • They just did that evaluation and concluded he’s the guy for this squad long term. Highly improbable he gets canned after the mega extension and raise he just got–not unless the room suddenly implodes as it apparently did at the end for Torts.

      • He gets next year bro and that’s it.

        Write it down, Gorton didn’t do much for this trade deadline but I bet he goes for it by revamping the D this offseason. It’s 2017-18 or bust.

        And he acquired a D man that he will probably want to resign so he’s not a true rental.

        • You could be right, but that depends on what kind of team Gorton gives him, and how healthy they are. Are you saying SC or bust next year? I highly doubt that will be the criteria unless they swap rosters with the Pens or Caps. But if they go out first round this year and then same next year, then sure, even I would say it’s time.

          I just responded to your deployment post up above, but it’s awaiting moderation because I have an article attached. Would enjoy hearing your feedback once you can see it.

  • Question: After Holden broke his stick, why didn’t he just tackle the Habs player? Was he afraid of getting a penalty with 20 seconds left in the game.

  • Back to top button