Sunday, January 31, 2010

Flames Holding Up Deal for Jokinen (Updated)

Update, 12:15 a.m.:
Larry Brooks, via Twitter, is reporting that the Rangers were originally going to send a defenseman (Gilroy?) to Calgary along with Kotalik, but the Flames made a late demand for Higgins.

...a Hober Baker winner with the potential to be a top offensive defenseman in the league or a forward who couldn't hit the ocean from a pier. Ummm, great choice Flames.

...ok now I'm going to bed.

Update, 11:58 p.m.:
Rick Carpiniello at the Rangers Report says that Kotalik's limited no trade clause could also be a reason for the hold-up.

...just when you're ready to give Sather credit for getting this deal done, you find out he gave Ales Kotalik, yes Ales Kotalik, a no trade clause. Awful.

Greg Wyshyski at Puck Daddy also has more on the potential trade.

...i don't expect anymore updates tonight, so I'm headed to bed.

Original Post:
Darren Dreger of TSN is reporting, via Twitter, that the Olli Jokinen and Brandon Prust for Ales Kotalik and Chris Higgins trade won't be announced tonight as the Flames are holding it up.

...they probably just realized they were trading a former 30-goal scorer for Kotalik and Higgins.

Rangers 3, Avalanche 1 (Kotalik Trade Info Below)

The New York Rangers (25-24-7) defeated the Colorado Avalanche (30-18-6) by the score of 3-1, tonight. For a recap and box score go to Yahoo! Sports and the way there was a game tonight. And a good one, as the Rangers were able to brake their five game losing streak.

...he's baaaaaack. If the Rangers have any chance of getting out of this tailspin Gaborik is going to have to do it on his own. Or maybe now with help of Jokinen.

...i guess Johnson is ready to be an NHL goaltender. Congrats on the first win kid.

...6 for 6 on the penalty kill. Can't ask for better than that.

...nice to see Voros using his face to block punches again.

...ridiculous game by Staal. Almost 30 minutes of ice time, 2 assists and a +2.

...Gilroy had just 10 minutes of ice time. Sather must have asked Torts to hold him back while his name was being discussed in the Jokinen trade. tomorrow, then to LA to play another young, fast, tough Western Conference team.

Kotalik, Higgins Traded to Calgary for Jokinen, Prust

TSN is now reporting the Rangers and Calgary Flames are expected to announce a trade tonight that will send Calgary center Olli Jokinen and forward Brandon Prust to the Rangers in exchange for forwards Ales Kotalik and Christopher Higgins.

Jokinen, who is in the final year of his contract that pays him $5.25 million, has 11 goals, 24 assists and is a +3 on the season.

Prust, also in the final year of his contract that pasy him $500,000, has 1 goal, 4 assists and 98 minutes in penalties this season.

...Jokinen who was a big time goal scorer while playing in anonymity in Florida has for the most part disappointed in Calgary. Let's hope he can find something with Gaborik (hat trick tonight by the way).

...this move also helps the Rangers clear some cap space as Jokinen and Prust come off the books at the end of the season.

...Prust will fill the role Brashear was supposed to play this season and the one Voros is currently trying to fill. far as Kotalik goes, not sure what happened to him. He looked like a steal at $3 million per at the beginning of the season then it just all fell apart. Higgins, I've never seen a player with worse luck than him.

Kotalik Sent Back to New York (Updated)

Update, 10:28 p.m.:
TSN is now reporting the Rangers and Calgary Flames are expected to announce a trade tonight that will send Calgary centre Olli Jokinen and forward Brandon Prust to the Rangers in exchange for forwards Ales Kotalik and Christopher Higgins.

...happy to see Gilroy not involved.

Update, 10:21 p.m.:
Darren Dreger at TSN, via Twitter, is reporting the Rangers are expected to trade Kotalik and Higgins or Gilroy to Calgary for Oli Jokinen. if this is true, what a day of blockbuster trades. I'll have more later.

Update, 10:15 p.m.:
Larry Brooks at the New York Post reports that the Maple Leafs, barren up front after today's blockbuster trades with Calgary and Anaheim, could be interested in Kolatik, perhaps in exchange for defenseman Garnet Exelby. While the Oilers, for whom Kotalik played for last year, could also be a logical trading partner.

Original Post:
Steve Zipay at Blue Notes reports that the Rangers have sent Ales Kotalik home after trade negotiations with an unnamed team broke down last night.

During the telecast, Sam Rosen said Kotalik was sent home to get his personal affairs in order.

...this is just speculation on my part, but you have to think Kotalik was not happy with the team the Rangers were going to send him to and said he wouldn't report.

...when Rosen says he was sent home to get his personal affairs in order I'm assuming that means talking to his family about moving to another city.

...i'll try to get you guys all the info as soon as it comes in.

Rangers @ Avalanche (Game 56)

The New York Rangers (24-24-7) will visit the Colorado Avalanche (30-17-6)tonight at the Pepsi Center starting at 8:00 p.m. For a preview go to Yahoo! Sports.

Ranger Pregame Notes

TV: MSG, Radio: WNYM (970AM)

Sorry don't have time for full pre-game notes, but Steve Zipay and Andrew Gross, via Twitter, both report that John Tortorella was 35 minutes late for his usually pregame presser. Some trade speculation.

They also report Henrik Lundqvist is again out with the flu. Apparently it's so bad that he's not even available to play if Johnson gets lit up. Torts says Johnson will have to "grind it out." Why was Zaba not summoned from Hartford? Let's just hope Johnson doesn't get hurt or Torts might have to put Avery between the pipes.

Brashear & Kotalik are scratches.

Another Defenseman Off the Market

TSN reports that the Calgary Flames have traded defenseman Dion Phaneuf to the Toronto Maple Leafs.

...with the Flames scouting the Rangers recently I thought the Blueshirts may be in the mix for Phaneuf, but Calgary officials must have come to their senses and said why would we want anyone from this terrible team.

...with Souray going down with a broken hand there are going to be slim pickings if the Rangers are interested in upgrading their defense at the trade deadline.

ESPN reports that the Maple Leafs have also acquired goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere from the Ducks.

Video: Torts Talks Loss to Phoenix

...did that game look different from the bench than it did on TV? Torts thought they played well in the first period?!?!?!?

Johnson May Get the Call Again Tonight

Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants reports that last night Henrik Lundqvist said he wasn't sure if he'd be ready to go tonight in Colorado due to a nasty stomach flu that kept him out of game against Phoenix.

This would mean Chad Johnson getting his second consecutive start on this road trip.

...i had that same stomach flu a few weeks back and I'd give him a lot of props if he was able to go tonight.

...hopefully Johnson and the Rangers can have a better start tonight against another good hockey team.

Forget Souray

Jim Matheson at the Edmonton Journal reports that Oilers defenseman Sheldon Souray broke his hand the other night in a fight with the Flames Jerome Iginla.

The Rangers were rumored to have interest in trading for Souray.

...while I would have loved him on the power play, this is probably the best thing for the Rangers. He was guaranteed to come here, clog up more cap room and stink.

Redden, Rozsival May Lead to Loss of Heikkinen

Larry Brooks at the New York Post says the Rangers' decision to keep Wade Redden and Michal Rozsival on the roster and in the lineup every day may drive Hartford defenseman Ilkka Heikkinen back overseas when his contract expires at the end of the season...

"Rest assured the physical defenseman with offensive instincts who received praise from coach John Tortorella during a seven-game trial run in December, will receive offers of substantially more guaranteed money from the KHL, which, of course, he would be foolish not to accept."

...the 'Albatross Twins' strike again. is amazing how hard headed Sather is to sacrifice the future of the franchise just so he can somehow save face. Which he isn't.

Brooks also says that if the Hurricanes make defensemen Joni Pitkanen or Tim Gleason available the Rangers would be very interested.

Sunday Headlines

Bergen Record - Rangers look sick without Henrik Lundqvist

Bergen Record - Rangers notes: Ales Kotalik, Donald Brashear out again

New York Post - Escaping Garden little help for Rangers

New York Post - Johnson settles down in place of flu-ridden King

Daily News - Rangers take fifth straight loss

Newsday - Rangers drop fifth straight, 3-2, against Coyotes

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Coyotes 3, Rangers 2

The New York Rangers (24-24-7) lost to the Phoenix Coyotes (32-18-5) by the score of 3-2 tonight. For a recap and box score go to Yahoo! Sports. think I'd be encouraged by the comeback attempt, but it actually disgusted me. Because it shows that the Rangers have the talent, just not the commitment. Which is inexcusable.

...goal of the year for so many reasons if Gaborik was able to get that one to go. to give Johnson credit for showing some moxie after a rough start, but he is just not ready to be an NHL goaltender. Which makes what the Rangers are doing to him not fair and they need to make a trade for a veteran goaltender tonight.

...unfortunately, the Rangers back-up goaltending situation is the least of their problems as they again do nothing on offense until it's too late and the power play sputters when it counted the most.

...the Rangers offense to so bad teams are now playing their back-ups against them.

...Rozsival just took another penalty. hard is Prucha laughing right now?

...Dubinsky-Christensen-Gaborik please!!!!

...right back at it tomorrow in Colorado.

Rangers @ Coyotes (Game 55) - Updated

Update, 7:35 p.m.:
Steve Zipay at Blue Notes reports that Henrik Lundqvist is out with the flu. While Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants has some quotes from Petr Prucha on facing his former team.

Original Post:
The New York Rangers (24-23-7) visit the Phoenix Coyotes (31-18-5) tonight at Arena starting at 8:00 p.m. For a preview go to Yahoo! Sports.

Rangers Game Notes

TV: MSG+; Radio: WNYM (970AM)

Probable Lines:

Del Zotto-Girardi

Chad Johnson - 0-1-1, 2.58 gaa, .908 sv%, 0 so.

Ilya Bryzgalov - 28-14-4, 2.35 gaa, .918 sv%, 5 so.

Opponent Notes:
- Phoenix has won two straight.

- The Coyotes are 20-8-2 at home this season.

- The Coyotes have scored the first goal of the game 28 times this season and have gone on to win 24 times..

- Shane Doan has 11 points (four goals, seven assists) in the last six games.

- Coyotes leading goal scorer Scottie Upshall (18 goals) is day-to-day with a right knee injury sustained last game vs. Calgary.

- Petr Prucha has 11g & 7a on the season while another former Ranger Lauri Korpikoski has 4g & 3a.

Opponent Blog:
Five For Howling

Prucha a Reason for Coyotes Success

Adam Gretz at AOL Fanhouse says the line of Radim Vrbata, Martin Hanzal and Petr Prucha has turned Phoenix into a playoff contender...

Prucha burst onto the NHL scene coming out of the lockout and tallied 30 goals in just 68 games with the Rangers during his rookie campaign. After that fast start, however, his production, and ice-time, started to decrease in New York to the point where he scored just 13 goals the past two seasons ... combined. He already has 11 this season.

"Petr, he just has so much energy on the forecheck," said Vrbata. "He's also a finisher. He gets open and he gets a lot of chances. As for me? I'm just trying to make plays, trying to get open, and trying score some goals. So far it's working for us."

...just in case you guys weren't depressed enough by the Malhotra piece yesterday, I thought I'd pass this along. Seriously, it is great to see Prucha doing so well as he was always a fan favorite and I'm looking forward to watching him tonight. did the Rangers mess up with Pruuuuucha.

Saturday Headlines

Bergen Record - Enver Lisin happy to be a Ranger

Bergen Record - Andrew Gross: Rangers may go shopping

New York Post - Redden still 'D' problem for Blueshirts

Newsday - Lisin returns to where NHL career began

Friday, January 29, 2010

Sather: Rangers Still In It

Steve Zipay at Blue Notes was able to speak with Glen Sather, who's with the Rangers on their road trop, about whether the he thinks his team is still in the playoff hunt...

"Why wouldn't I? Just about the only team that's out of it is Edmonton," Sather said. "The East is so tight. The Isles lost last night, Philly lost. Everybody thinks they are in it...It's good for the league and the fans, not always for some teams. It's tougher than it's been."

...of course the Rangers are still in the playoff hunt. With three point games, every team is in the playoff hunt until the beginning of March.

...unfortunately, this sometimes gives a team a false sense of how good they are (see the Rangers this year) and instead of making the smart move of selling their dead weight to desperate teams at the deadline they become one of those desperate teams.

Zipay adds that Sather and a contingent of Ranger officials scouted last night's Flames-Coyotes game.

...last week the Flames were scouting the Rangers, now the Blueshirts are returning the favor. Hmmmm. Phaneuf anyone?

Zipay also spoke with Enver Lisin on his return to Phoenix.

Christensen Back; Redden Safe

Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants reports that Erik Christensen will most likely be back in the line-up tomorrow night in Phoenix on the second line with Chris Drury and Brandon Dubinsky.

...seriously did Tortorella somehow forget about all the offense the Dubsinky-Christensen-Gaborik line produced? Unreal.

Gross says the healthy scratches will likely come from today’s fourth line group of Sean Avery, Donald Brashear, Brian Boyle, Ales Kotalik and Aaron Voros.

...with the Phoenix being a young, fast team, I'd go with Brashear and Voros being the scratches.

Finally, Gross reports that only six defensemen made the trip meaning Wade Redden, who had a lengthy chat with Tortorella after practice to clear the air, looks like a go for tomorrow night.

Would You Rather Have Manny Than...

Rick Carpiniello at the Rangers Report takes a look at how former first round Rangers bust Manny Malhotra is fairing with the first place San Jose Sharks (pretty good actually - 9g, 13a & +14) and asks this question " Would you rather have Manny than …"

Would you rather have Manny than … Marian Gaborik? No.
Would you rather have Manny than … Brandon Dubinsky, Ryan Callahan or Artem Anisimov? At this point, probably not. They have better upside and are younger. But Manny’s as good as any of them right now.
Would you rather have Manny than … Chris Drury? I won’t even bother with that one, but you could have 10 Malhotras for Drury’s salary.
Would you rather have Manny than … Ales Kotalik, Sean Avery, Vinny Prospal, Christopher Higgins, Brian Boyle, Erik Christensen, Aaron Voros, Enver Lisin, Donald Brashear? NO DOUBT! I don't hate this team already. And now I have to see this.

...when a former first round bust is better than 90% of your team you know you're f'ed.

To cheer you up check out David S.'s list of Avery-isms over at Stalking Steve Phillips.

Rangers NCAA Prospect Update

Leslie Treff at Hockey's Future looks at the Rangers eight prospects currently playing college hockey including Ryan McDonagh (obtained in Gomez trade), Derek Stepan and Chris Kreider among others...

Ryan McDonagh, Age 20
Acquired: 6/30/09 Trade with Montreal (1st Round, 12th overall 2007)

On the top pairing for the University of Wisconsin with an Anaheim Ducks top prospect Jake Gardiner, junior blueliner McDonagh is a two-way defenseman who is not afraid to take the body and protect teammates. Named a tri-captain for the season, McDonagh has an excellent competitive fire and knows how to lead. In what is widely thought to be his final season as a Badger, McDonagh is second among defensemen in total points on the team with 12 (3 goals, 9 assists).

McDonagh is expected to compete for a Rangers roster spot out of camp next season, however, is more likely to spend the campaign in Hartford.

...taking the body! Protecting teammates! Competitive fire! Can the Rangers somehow find a loophole to bring this kid up to the big club right now?

Don't Sacrifice Future

Larry Brooks at the New York Post asks Glen Sather not to mortgage the Rangers future for a first round exit...

"The Rangers aren't one or two players away, unless they are Jean Beliveau and Bobby Orr in their prime. The Rangers aren't one brilliant trade away from inserting themselves into the Stanley Cup conversation.

Instead, the Rangers are simply one of those many teams camped out with the huddled masses on the treadmill of NHL mediocrity. Sorry to say, but Lundqvist and Gaborik are lipstick on the pig." tell you the truth, I've thought Sather's trade deadline moves the last few years have been pretty reserved. Avery, Morris, Antropov, Mara, Sjostrom & Backman. No big splash while only losing Prucha and Dawes. Both of whom are currently playing well, but you and I both know they'd either be healthy scratches or struggling with the Blueshirts.

...i'd be shocked to see Kovalchuk or Lecavalier wearing a Rangers sweater this season.

...would much rather see Sather work to get some salaries off the books by trading (Prospal, Kotalik, Rozsival) to a desperate team.

Friday Headlines

New York Post - Rangers face tough West Coast trip

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Fire Sather Rally March 7th

Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy reports on a Fire Sather Rally which is scheduled for March 7th before the Rangers-Sabres game, from 5-6pm, on the 33rd Street side of Seventh Ave., in front of a Borders book store.

The rally has be coordinated by Mike Zippo, who has even created a Facebook page to promote the cause.

Wyshynski was able to sit down with Zippo to discuss the rally. Here is an exerpt...

How is the "Fire Sather" rally progressing?
It's grown a little bit in the last couple of days.
When I started the event on Facebook, I sent out 100 invitations. The first night we had it, we got mentioned on [the Blueshirt Banter] Internet radio show right away. Last night, it was mentioned on [ESPN] 1050 AM at about 11:45 p.m., which is actually the radio home for the Rangers.

I think it's just going to keep growing.

...while I love the spirit by Zippo, this rally isn't going to mean a hill of beans to the Dolans. The only real way to send a message would be to stage a "Fire Sather" sitout where you pick an upcoming game and try to convince every ticket holder for that game to stay home. Then you'll hit the Dolan's where it hurts. In the wallet.

...having said that, I'm encouraging all my readers to attend the rally and show your support of firing Sather.

I Thought Entitlement Was Over?

Rick Carpiniello at the Rangers Report takes a look back at John Tortorella's "enough with the entitlement" quote after the Rangers dreadful 2-1 loss to the Islanders back in December and wonders...

" When, exactly, does the entitlement run out for people not named Redden and Kotalik?"

...great point by Carp. Like I said last night, is benching Redden for half the game really sending a message? How about sitting Callahan, Drury or Higgins? And don't get me started on Girardi whose non-action in the Gaborik fight should have been an automatic seat in the press box.

...this shows that nothing has changed and Torts is all talk. He says he's going to change the culture, but nothing is different. Half-assed efforts are common place and over-paid veterans have an automatic spot in the line-up no matter how ineffective.

...something I forgot to mention in my post game comments last night was how about reuniting the Dubinsky-Christensen-Gaborik line? Does anyone remember how prolific that line was before Torts broke them up when Prospal came back from injury? It's no coincidence that the Rangers goal scoring has suffered since that line was disbanded.

Avery a Tough Guy

Fox Sports names Sean Avery along with Dan Carcillo the #9 tough guys for last week...

9. Dan Carcillo and the Flyers vs. Sean Avery and the Rangers
Blood boiled over several times last Thursday night at The Wach when the Rangers rolled into Philly to take on the Flyers. The two rivals squared off four times in the clash, with Broad Street Bully Daniel Carcillo and New York pest Sean Avery each throwing down twice for their respective team.

...Carcillo has no business being called a tough guy ever again.

Rangers Expected to Be Interested Kovalchuk

Steve Zipay at Newsday expands on his blog post yesterday by stating that if Ilya Kovalchuk is available the Rangers are expected to be interested.

Zipay adds that Atlanta will most likely command Brandon Dubinsky, either Chris Higgins or Ales Kotalik, a prospect such as Bobby Sanguinetti and maybe a No. 2 pick. The Flyers, Bruins, Canucks, Flames, Kings and Blackhawks could put together even more attractive packages.

On the monetary aspect Zipay says...

"To rent Kovalchuk, the Rangers, who are owned by Cablevision, which also owns Newsday, would have to clear about $3 million in cap space. A long-term deal, presumably worth $8 million or more per year, could wait until July, when a decision on moving Wade Redden or Michal Rozsival would have to be made."

Finally Zipay says Kovalchuk will help in numerous areas including scoring, ticket sales and appeasing the fans.

...if the Rangers aren't willing to part with Dubinsky (the only real loss in the deal) they could clear some cap space at the trade deadline (Kotalik, Voros & Rozsival), wait till the offseason to see if they can do anything with Redden and make Kovalchuk a big offer.

Thursday Headlines

New York Post - Rangers hit road after awful loss

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Rangers Hold Closed Door Meeting After Loss to Canes

Steve Zipay at Blue Notes reports that the Ranger players held a closed door meeting after tonight's loss to the Hurricanes and has this quote from Marian Gaborik on the meeting...

“overall as a team we’ve been inconsistent, it’s not about one guy….I don’t want to talk about it (the post-game, closed door meeting).It was about the team. We just have to snap out of it. It’s gonna be huge to really stay together and gain some confidence and play how we are capable of playing. We’re better than this."

Here are more quotes from Zipay...

Chris Drury on the state of the team...
“We have a lot of negative stuff coming down on this team right now,” said Chris Drury, who also spoke about the need to “stay together…During the game, after the game, before the game, I think we have to do the best we can to stay together. We got into this little four-game skid together and we are going to get out of it together. It’s probably a good time to go on the road.”

John Tortorella on what's next...
“You have to make your own luck,” Torts said. “It’s an unforgiving week. No one is going to feel sorry for you. The best thing for us is to get out of town. We have to regroup as a hockey club. You can’t be pointing a finger at your teammates. You have to grind through this. Having gone through all this, in the Eastern Conference, we are still right in the middle of it. We will get on the plane and try to regroup here. That’s the key thing, not break apart.”

Video: Torts, Players Talk Loss to Canes

Henrik Lundqvist, Ryan Callahan and Vinny Prospal react to loss to Hurricanes here.

Hurricanes 5, Rangers 1

The New York Rangers (24-23-7) lost to the Carolina Hurricanes (17-28-7) by the score of 5-1, tonight. For a recap and box score go to Yahoo! Sports and now what? Anyone? about sitting Higgins, Lisin and Kotalik and bringing up Locke, Grachev and Byers? Why not? Things can't get worse.

...ok I said I would wait till the offseason before taking the 'C' away from Drury. But I'm ready to take it away tonight. Someone has to take the fall for the lack of effort and I'm pointing my finger at an invisible, uninspired captain.

...could be one of Lundqvist's worst games as a Ranger. Can't blame him. The pressure to be perfect every night had to get to him eventually.

...i watched Avery's 1st intermission interview and you can tell something is wrong with this team. I just have no idea what it is. Tuning out the coach? No heart? To much pressure? benching Redden really sending a message when making him a healthy scratch earlier this year didn't do anything? How about a one-way ticket to Hartford?

...good thing the Rangers worked on the power play yesterday. Did I say the Rangers needed to put Kotalik back on the point? Scratch that.

...having said all that I'm not giving up on this team. They're still somehow in playoff position (tied for 6th) and it's only January. Plenty of time to figure this out and get things going in the right direction.

...maybe a trip out west is what this team needs starting on Saturday in Phoenix.

Rangers vs. Hurricanes (Game 54)

The New York Rangers (24-22-7) host the Carolina Hurricanes (16-28-7) tonight at MSG starting at 7:00 p.m. For a preview go to Yahoo! Sports.

Ranger Pregame Notes

TV: MSG; Radio: ESPNRadio (1050AM)

Probable Lines:

Del Zotto-Girardi

Henrik Lundqvist - 22-18-6, 2.34 gaa, .922 sv%, 2 so.

Cam Ward - 11-19-5, 2.82 gaa, .909 sv%, 0 so.

Opponent Notes:
- Carolina has won two of three and are 7-6-0 in their last 13.

- Eric Staal has scored five goals in three games since being named captain.

- Carolina and the Rangers split a home-and-home series Dec. 31 and Jan. 2, with each road team winning 2-1.

- Carolina is 5-16-4 on the road.

- Chad LaRose has scored two goals in four games since returning from a leg injury.

- Erik Cole has been out indefinately since early December with an upper body injury.

Opponent Blog:
Let's Go Canes

Only 35 Subscribers to Newsday's Website

Forgot to post this yesterday. John Koblin at the New York Observer reports that three months after Newsday turned it's website into a pay site, just 35 people subscribed.

The Dolans bought Newsday for $650 million back in October and decided to make its website only available to paid subscribers.

The website redesign and relaunch cost the Dolans $4 million and with those 35 people, they've grossed about $9,000.

The 35 does not include Newsday and Optimum Cable subscribers who have free access to the website.

...Steve Zipay is so pissed.

...h/t to reader James for the link.

Rangers to Be Buyers After Olympics

Steve Zipay at Blue Notes feels that, barring a major collapse, the Rangers will be buyers after the Olympics.

Zipay says that besides Ilya Kovalchuk there really isn't a "difference maker" available. And adds if the Rangers are interested in Kovalchuk it would most likely cost Brandon Dubinsky, Bobby Sanguinetti, and a No. 2 pick.

...Dubinsky would be a tough loss but if the Rangers can somehow make the numbers work I think you have to pull the triger on a trade to bring in one of the best players in the league.

...however, if the Rangers can't make something work with Kovalchuk, I would like to see them become sellers. I think they could get some good value for Prospal who is a cheap veteran that a young team like the Kings or Senators may be interested in for a playoff push and beyond (See Guerin to the Pens last year). Other players I'd like to see moved that could bring back value are Girardi and Kotalik.

Zipay will be hosting his weekly live webchat today at 1 p.m.

More Souray to Rangers Talk

Last Sunday Pierre LeBrun at reported that the Rangers had interest in Oilers defenseman Sheldon Souray, now Jim Matheson at the Edmonton Journal adds that the Rangers are on Souray's list of possible trade destinations.

Matheson adds that the Rangers are contenders because of the spotlight of playing in New York.

Souray, who recently waived his no-trade clause, has 13 points (4-9) is a minus-17 rating in 35 games and is making $5.4 million this season. He has two years left on his contract at $4.5 per.

...despite his lack of numbers and injury liability, the Rangers power play ineptness makes Souray a player they should inquire about. Obviously, I'd have to hear who the Oilers would want in return, plus the Rangers would need to make a move (Redden to Hartford) to open up cap space.

Wednesday Headlines

New York Post - Rangers look to PP to spark anemic offense

Daily News - Ranger power play resorts to Ales

Newsday - Rangers bring back Kotalik to help power play

Bergen Record - Enter Ales Kotalik, the power Ranger

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Torts a Good Communicator

Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants has numerous quotes from Erik Christensen on being scratched from the line-up yesterday and most likely tomorrow...

“That second goal in Montreal was my mistake and I’m paying for it,” Christensen said of Mike Cammalleri’s first goal. “I don’t have as long a leash as everybody else.”

On John Tortorella's message to him that his absence from the line-up won't be forever...

“He’s a pretty good communicator,” Christensen said. “He’s definitely edgy and he has a temper.”

Citing Torts' dust up with Larry Brooks and the three question press conference last night, Jess Rubenstein at The Prospect Park disagrees with the good communicator comment. me Torts post game antics and timeout tirades are just side show acts. What concerns me is his inability to get this team to compete on a consistent basis. Until this team makes a real dramatic move (ie Redden to Hartford, sit Callahan or strip Drury of the captaincy) I don't see anything changing. Good enough to keep us interested, but not nearly good enough to make a serious run in the playoffs.

Drury Needs to Remain Captain

With the ever increasing calls from Ranger fans for the Blueshirts to strip Chris Drury of the captaincy, Joe Fortunato at Blueshirt Banter gives his reasons why Drury should remain captain...

"And what is truly regretful about this particular situation is that Drury leads every game. Drury is among the top players in the NHL in blocked shots. How many players on the Rangers throw themselves--face first--into an opposing slap shot? There is only one other that I can think of and that player is Ryan Callahan (who, by the way, many of you classify as a leader of this team). Drury does everything he can to keep the penalty kill above water, he does everything he can to score goals (even though he isn't) but most importantly he cares. You tell me the last time Drury has taken a shift off? He might be invisible some games, you might not notice him, but he never was a game-breaker and he never was flashy."

Fortunato also asks who would replace Drury adding that Sean Avery would be a bad candidate.

...this is no knock on Drury as like Fortunato says he never takes a shifft off, but too many other players do. This is where a captain needs to earn his 'C' by setting those players straight. And right now, as far as I can see, Drury is not doing this. And if he is, those players aren't listening which is even worse.

...while I agree with Fortunato that Avery would not be a good candidate for the 'C'. He egregiously leaves out Marian Gaborik. This guy has been everything and more since becoming a Ranger. He battles in front of the net, he's not afraid to do the dirty work in the corners and finally as seen in his fight against Carcillo he's willing to take on even the toughest opponent. I wouldn't make the change this season, but based on the Carcillo incident alone I'd like to see the Rangers transition this off-season to giving Gaborik the 'C' for next year.

Lack of Scoring a Burden on Gaborik

John Tortorella tells Marc Herrmann at Blue Notes that he's not worried about Marian Gaborik's recent scoring woes...

"It has affected a lot of his game, but one thing I’ll tell you about him, I know he cares. I’ve had a couple meetings with him along the way here, through all this. He knows where he’s at. He knows what he means to the club. He certainly doesn’t hide from some of the deficiencies in his game, and he’ll correct them. He’ll be a big part of this, as far as us trying to find a way. He cares. That’s what I rest on, even through the struggle he’s had for a while here." thing Rangers fans definitely shouldn't worry about is his commitment to winning. Unfortunately, with the Rangers inability to score this season you can tell he's putting way too much pressure on himself to carry the team.

...what Gaborik needs to get out of this scoring slump is for his teammates to start scoring and take the burden off his shoulders.

Kotalik to Return as Rangers Practice Power Play

Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants reports Ales Kotalik was back at the power play point during practice today and should be in the line-up tomorrow night against the Hurricanes.

Gross adds that John Tortorella liked what he saw from his power play at practice today and feels that they need more movement and rotation and more bodies getting to the net.

On being a healthy scratch the last five games Kotalik told Mark Herrmann at Blue Notes...

"We work--sometimes the days you don't play are even harder than the days you do play a game. It wasn't really a pleasant and enjoyable time for me. You try and keep it to yourself, don't bother anybody else with it. Try to be supportive of the guys. And keep yourself ready."

...not sure if this will help the power play as it wasn't exactly clicking on all cylinders before Kotalik was benched. But unless the Rangers can coax Brian Leetch out of retirement they really don't have anywhere else to turn.

Rangers Talk Loss to Pens

Rick Carpiniello at The Rangers Report has numerous post game quotes...

Henrik Lundqvist on tonight’s game…
“This one was painful. We battled back and it was a pretty good game. In the second period we played pretty well and we came out in the third and kept it going. I don’t know what to say. That was bad timing , when we got that penalty, they get a lucky goal on a deflection off our player. We have had a bunch of these games this year. It could be a different story if we manage to win these games. We have a tough time winning games like this but we definitely played a lot better than the last two games. That is a good thing.”

Brandon Dubinsky on the 2nd intermission…
“I thought we were good here in the room and we knew we just had to fight for another 20 minutes out there to try and get 2 points. Arty (Artem Anisimov) scores a big goal there, but we have to respond after that. It starts with my line. We have to make sure we are strong defensively, especially when it’s tough to put pucks in the net. We have to make sure we are doing our jobs and try and keep confident here. From now on we have to try and stay confident and believe in what we got here. We have to believe in what we can do and get over this.”

Marian Gaborik...
“We’ve got to manage to keep the lead if we have it in the third period like that. It happened in the last game against these guys too. We play a good game, but we have to hold onto the lead. … when they tied it, we can’t let them score the go-ahead goal.”

Dubinsky (on the winning goal)...
”I was maybe a little late trying to get there. I’m not going to sit here and say it was my guy or another guy’s. We’ve got to do a better job and make sure we’ve got to make sure we’ve got a high guy and make sure they don’t get an odd-man rush and make sure they don’t even get that opportunity.”

Lundqvist on the winning goal...
"It was just bad positioning. I tried to reach for it on the rebound and I went down to make a block and he just found a hole there above my pad. You know, everything happens so fast. You sit here and maybe think what I would have done differently—maybe not reach for the puck and just get back in position. But I didn’t see the guy coming, I reached for the puck, and then I saw him and I was a little too late there.”

Rangers Drop In Power Rankings drops the Rangers to #21 from #20 in their latest power rankings...

21. Rangers - They looked absolutely brutal -- and I mean brutal -- in Montreal on Saturday night.

While CBS Sports moves them down five spots to #22...

22. Rangers - Things are getting ugly for the Rangers, who have been shut out four times in the past seven games.

The Hockey News and TSN also released their power rankings.

Video: Torts Talks Loss to Pens

John Tortorella talks loss to Penguins here.

Tuesday Headlines

New York Post - Rangers drop 3rd straight as Pens score late

New York Post - NHL union cuts Kelly deal

Daily News - New York Rangers fall short to Pittsburgh Penguins, 4-2, at Madison Square Garden

Newsday - Slumping Rangers fall to Penguins

Bergen Record - Rangers lose third straight to Penguins, 4-2

Bergen Record - Rangers notes: Brotherly love between Marc Staal and Jordan Staal

New York Times - Anisimov Ends His Slump, but Rangers Can’t Halt Theirs

Journal News - Feast or famine at Garden

Monday, January 25, 2010

Penguins 4, Rangers 2

The New York Rangers (24-22-7) lost to the Pittsburgh Penguins (33-20-1) by the score of 4-2, tonight. For a recap and box score go to Yahoo! Sports and

...let's see, the Pens played yesterday; Guerin, Talbot and Goligoski are all out; and they pretty much play the entire game with only 11 forwards. Talk about not taking advantage.

...guess I shouldn't complain at least they scored a couple tonight.

...nice to see Anisimov remembered where the net was. 17 games without a point is a long time. may be time to get Kotalik back on the point on the power play because it is putrid right now and the reason why the Blueshirts lost tonight.

...not only is Gaborik not scoring he's also shanking passes and taking penalties. Not a good combination. I'm assuming the guy's pressing knowing he's the only one on the team who can score.

...i hate to criticize Lundqvist when the Rangers are only scoring one goal a night, but he's got to make some of those saves.

...only three shots on goal for the Rangers defensemen tonight. Letang had three by himself for the Pens. tomorrow then the lowly Hurricanes invade MSG.

Rangers vs. Penguins (Game 53)

The New York Rangers (24-21-7) host the Pittsburgh Penguins (32-20-1) tonight at MSG starting at 7:00 p.m. For a preview go to Yahoo! Sports.

TV: Versus; Radio: ESPNRadio (1050AM)

Probable Lines:

Del Zotto-Girardi

Henrik Lundqvist - 22-17-6, 2.32 gaa, .923 sv%, 2 so.

Marc-Andre Fleury - 25-14-1, 2.60 gaa, .908 sv%, 0 so.

Opponent Notes:
- The Penguins have won the past six meetings (3-0 this season) against the Rangers, all in regulation, outscoring them 29-12.

- Sidney Crosby, who is tied for the league lead in goals with 33, has eight goals and six assists in the past five meetings against the Rangers.

- Marc-Andre Fleury, who is expected to play after missing the last three games with a broken finger, has a 3-6-3 record and 3.36 GAA at MSG.

- Bill Guerin, Max Talbot and Alex Goligoski are out tonight.

Opponent Blog:
The Pensblog

Lundy to Get Rangers In Playoffs, But Not For Long

Jay Feaster at The Hockey News says with Buffalo, New Jersey, Pittsburgh and Washington assured to make the playoffs the final four spots will be determined by goaltending...

New York Rangers: The Blueshirts have the best goalie of the playoff wannabes, hands down. However, the Rangers risk overworking their starter, as King Henrik rarely gets a breather and will be relied on heavily by Sweden in Vancouver next month. The Rangers will make the dance, but exit early.'s like Groundhog Day for Rangers fans thinking about another early exit from the playoffs. its been since Lundqvist became the starter, the Rangers will only go as far as their netminder will take them.

Brashear In, Christensen Out

Steve Zipay at Blue Notes and Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants report that Donal d Brashear will return to the lineup tonight against the Penguins with Erik Christensen headed to the press box.

Zipay adds that Tortorella didn't detail why Christensen is out, simply saying he hasn't been "dead-on" and that he wants Brashear in.

...something had to be done. Not sure this is it. But at least it's something.

Chad Johnson is back from Hartford.

Finally, Gross has this quote from Marc Staal on the Rangers problems...

“I think we’re competing hard,” Staal said. “Mentally, we’re just making mistakes and losing coverage. Maybe that’s a part of getting ready mentally. But we had a good start at Montreal, we were flying all over the place. You just don’t lose that will to win.”

...if making mistakes is part of getting ready mentally the Rangers should be the most mentally prepared team in the league instead of the least.

Monday Headlines

Daily News - New York Rangers take a day off to try and spark struggling offense

New York Post - Rangers rookie Anisimov needs a re-charge

Bergen Record - Rangers' issues more internal than external

Bergen Record - Up next for Rangers: Penguins

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Panthers Interested in Kotalik

Bruce Garrioch at the Ottawa Sun reports that the Florida Panthers have shown interest in Ales Kotalik.

Spector over at Spector's Hockey says with Nathan Horton out with a broken leg the Panthers are in need of scoring help.

...Garrioch is 0 for the season on trade rumors so take this with a grain of salt.

...although, if the Panthers are interested I'd trade him for a bag of pucks right now just to get his $3 million per salary off the rolls.

Kotalik Denies Trade Request

Ales Kotalik told both Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants and Steve Zipay at Blue Notes that the rumors of him asking for a trade were false...

“Why would I?” Kotalik said. “I wouldn’t hurt the team. This is the situation. I’m just trying to be a good teammate and support the guys.”

The rumor had started because supposedly Kotalik's agent had canceled a March autograph session and said he was seeking a trade. However to further debunk this rumor the Rangers confirmed that there is a March 1 cutoff for such publicity sessions, something common around the NHL. I said yesterday the guys over at Blueshirt Banter do an outstanding job, but you have to wonder if they should have confirmed things before posting this rumor.

Gross and Zipay also have quotes before last night's game from Donald Brashear on the Gaborik/Carcillo incident. During his quotes Brash actually takes a shot at ex-Ranger Colton Orr.

...don't even go there Brash. You've already made yourself look bad with your play on the ice don't make it worse by criticizing someone who's jock you couldn't hold right now.

Sunday Headlines

Bergen Record - Rangers pounded in Montreal, 6-0

Bergen Record - Rangers notes: No way

New York Post - Avery rips Rangers' efforts in latest shutout

Daily News - Rangers look sloppy in loss to Canadiens

Newsday - Rangers blanked in loss to Canadiens, 6-0

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Video: Torts on Loss to Canadiens

John Tortorella and Dan Girardi talk loss to Canadiens here.

Rangers Talk Loss to Canadiens

Steve Zipay at Blue Notes has these quotes after tonight's 6-0 loss to Montreal...

Sean Avery on the team's effort tonight...
“No compete,” said Avery. “It’s not about Xs and Os. You’ve gotta play 60 minutes. We’re not working hard enough, not being competitive, not representing your teammates.”

On the teams compete level, coach John Tortorella said...
“At times it was decent, other times it wasn’t there. We beat ourselves a couple times, our spinning in front of our net hurt us. I’m not gonna dissect it.”

On his first NHL action Matt Zaba noted...
“I wasn’t nervous,” said Zaba. “I just wanted to go in and not be scared to make mistakes, just try to give the guys a boost and give the coaches a look. It was kind of like a job interview for me.”

Canadiens 6, Rangers 0

The New York Rangers (24-21-7) lost to the Montreal Canadiens (25-23-5) by the score of 6-0, tonight. For a recap and box score go to Yahoo! Sports and

...the Rangers 'House of Horrors' continues in Montreal with another offensively challenged effort. You know things are bad when Matt Zaba is the best player on the ice for your team.

...i don't even care anymore that they had numerous scoring opportunities. Someone put the puck in the net!!!

...absolutely shameful officiating takes two power plays away from the Rangers and directly leads to Canadiens goals.

...bad night for Ranger defensemen as Rozsival gets out muscled by Gomez on the first goal, Del Zotto with a bad giveaway at the blueline and Girardi whiffing on the icing. Tough last two games for Girardi.

...the Rangers might want to think about putting someone on Cammallari the next time they face the Canadiens. Six goals in three games.

...on effort alone Voros deserves to be in the line-up for the rest of the season.

...Lundqvist isn't allowed to play in Montreal anymore. tell you the truth, I have no idea what this team can do right now to turn things around. Make a trade, bring up Grachev, re-insert Kotalik & Brashear, ride it out. Something has to happen to shake things up. Because what's been done (ie benchings) just isn't working.

...what was up with the "Na Na Na Good Bye" chant by the Montreal crowd? I thought that was only for when your team was about to eliminate someone from the playoffs. Pretty stupid in my opinion. tomorrow then defending Stanley Cup Champions in town. Just what this team needs.

Same Lineup; Kotalik Not the Type of Player to Request Trade

Steve Zipay, via Twitter, is reporting every Ranger player was on the ice for this morning's pregame practice and that it is likely to be the same line-up for the fourth straight game tonight.

...thought we might see Brashear for obvious reasons, but Montreal just bought out their only enforcer and Ranger/Canadien games in Montreal are usually a high scoring affair. So this makes sense.

While Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants responds to the rumor that Ales Kotalik has requested a trade...

"Also want to check in with Ales Kotalik. Some internet rumblings now that he’s looking to get out. I asked him that question point-blank the other week, when he was first scratched as to whether he would seek a trade or an exit from the Rangers and his direct quote was, “That’s not me,” meaning, he wasn’t the type of player who would try to force a transaction."

...while Kotalik has disappointed of late if he can regain whatever it was he had going early in the year he can still be an important player for the Rangers.

...not sure if I'll have time for a game preview tonight, but "ll try my best.

Gaborik Sets Example With Fight; Carcillo Responds

Allan Muir at says Marian Gaborik's willingness to drop the gloves against a known enforcer should be something the Rangers rally around...

"And Gaborik, well, he demonstrated his level of commitment to the guys in the room. When the team's leading scorer is willing to answer the bell, that sets the bar for every guy wearing the sweater. This could end up being one of those galvanizing moments that defines the season for the Rangers."

...with all the whining and complaining I've been doing around here I've definitely been remiss in mentioning the props that Gaborik deserves for dropping the gloves with Carcillo. I think a message that was also sent Thursday night, besides the Rangers being soft, is that Gaborik is willing to do whatever it takes to win even if that means taking on one of the better brawlers in the league. If the Rangers can't take motivation from that this team is doomed.

Muir also criticizes Tortorella for matching up Gaborik's line with Carcillo's after the icing leading up to the incident. Going as far as saying in-game management isn't his strongest suit.

...Torts shouldn't be criticized at all for the move. The Rangers were doing absolutely nothing offensively at the time and Torts saw a matchup he could expose. That's a move Torts should make every time.

TSN has numerous quotes from Carcillo on the incident with Gaborik including this one on whether he thought a Ranger player should have stepped in...

"Yes, but I don't know which one of his linemates would have really done much. [Brandon] Dubinsky, we've fought before, he could have jumped in."

Carcillo adds that the only reason he fought was because Gaborik dropped the gloves first and that if a player like Sean Avery was fighting Danny Briere he would have jumped in.

Saturday Headlines

Bergen Record - Battles are galvanizing Rangers

New York Post - Rangers don't seem 'desperate' Phaneuf

Newsday - Canadiens thinking payback against Rangers?

Friday, January 22, 2010

Back to Actual Hockey Talk

Steve Zipay at Blue Notes has this quote from John Tortorella on what the Rangers need to improve on hockey wise coming off the 2-0 loss to the Flyers...

“We had a lot of turnovers,” said Tortorella, who kept the team off the ice today. “I don’t think we did a good enough job of trying to chip the puck behind them and try to forecheck. They beat us to pucks. When they pressured, they sustained it. When we had the opportunities, we were late. ”

On the lack of offense in Philly, Vinny Prospal added...

"After two games when we score 14 goals, we’re right back where we were going into St. Louis (after back-to-back shutouts),” said Vinny Prospal. “It just shouldn’t happen. We’re a successful team when we can cycle the puck, but 5 on 5, we just couldn’t do it.”

...the circus surrounding the Philly game has us forgetting that the Rangers were shutout for the third time in five games. This team needs to find consistent scoring and they need to find it fast.

Kotalik Requests Trade?

Jim Schmiedeberg at the Blueshirt Banter has heard from a source that Ales Kotalik has asked for a trade...

"According to the agent, Kotalik has asked for a trade, telling the Rangers he is not happy with the organization, and wants to be traded, released, or he will defect to Russia. Kotalik has allegedly told the Rangers he would like to be traded out west."

Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants had this quote from Kotalik last week...

“I scored a couple of goals and I was talking about it with the coaching staff, Schoeney,” Kotalik said. “I was starting to feel better about myself, I thought my game was coming along and would get on a level I’d like and I know I can be. But I was pushed to the fourth line and the minutes weren’t there. It was the same thing. I don’t know. I sure would love to know. But that’s not happening, I don’t know what it is.”

...while you always worry about information coming from "sources," the guys over at Banter are not a rumor mill and I trust that this is accurate information.

...this wouldn't surprise me as I can't imagine Kotalik is exactly excited to be sitting in the press box right now.

Flames Scouting Rangers

Lost in the fireworks last night was Sam Rosen mentioning during the telecast that for the second game in a row the Calgary Flames were scouting the Rangers.

With the Rangers already playing their only game against the Flames back in November, one has to think Calgary is interested in some Rangers personnel.

Not sure who the Flames may be willing to part with, but TSN is reporting that the Flames are going to be active in the Ilya Kovalchuk sweepstakes. This could mean a player like Olli Jokinen could be available. Also a reader commented in my George Laraque post on rumors that the Flames are looking to deal tough guy Brian McGratton to the Blueshirts.

Just an aside, while I was checking out the Flames roster I noticed that Nigel Dawes has 10 goals and 15 assists on the season. Which would put him fourth on the Rangers in goals and fifth in points. Just sayin'.

Girardi Explains Himself

Larry Brooks at the New York Post has this quote from Dan Girardi on why he chose not to jump in during the Marian Gaborik/Daniel Carcillo fight...

"I guess I was overthinking it, Girardi said. "I didn't want to take another penalty, because I knew we already had one there [on Brandon Dubinsky], but I should have gotten involved. I should have jumped in. Maybe it was the wrong decision, but it was the decision I made at the time.

"If there's a next time, I would go."

...i like Girardi. I think he's been a solid defenseman for the Rangers. But I think he deserves to sit the next game for his inaction. If for no other reason than to send a message to the rest of the team to toughen up.

More Reaction to Last Night's Events

Greg Wyshynski at Puck Daddy gives an extended look at all the excitement on and off the ice from last night's Rangers loss to the Flyers...

On the Tortorella vs. Brooks incident...

"This is John Tortorella. This is what he does. Whether you think this makes the Rangers look petty or whiney, it's part of the package. Just be happy he didn't throw a water bottle at anyone."

...personnally I love Torts post game antics. Much more entertaining then the normal boring Q&A.

On the Gaborik/Carcillo fight...

"Obviously, had Avery been on the ice when Gaborik was jumped, you'd expect the switch to be flipped and Carcillo to face an immediate rebuke. But it wasn't there from Gaborik's teammates at the time of the fight. This actually speaks to something Larry Brooks has often written about, which is how the Rangers need to play with the passion of Sean Avery."

...amen brother.

Is Laraque the Answer?

Yesterday, TSN reported that the Montreal Canadiens have decided to buyout enforcer George Laraque saying the team was going in a different direction...

"It's a hockey decision. We felt that he was not helping our team to win games."

Laraque responded with this quote...

"Jacques Martin doesn't like me and doesn't believe in toughness," Laraque told TSN.

Laraque signed a three-year, $4.5 million contract in July of 2008 and has one year remaining on his deal. A lingering back injury limited him to just 61 games with the Canadiens over the last two seasons, as he tallied just five points and 89 penalty minutes.

...obviously with anyone that is bought out there are some major minuses. But this team needs a real enforcer. The Rangers can't allow an incident like last night to happen again to their superstar player.

...i may be making too big a deal out of the whole Gaborik situation as its only one game, but I'm worried that other teams will take Philly's cue and start pounding on the Rangers skilled players knowing there's no real physical threat in the Blueshirts line-up.

...if nothing else maybe we'll get to see another awesome commercial from Laraque.

Rangers Need Better Effort to Make Playoffs

Spector at Fox Sports takes a look at the playoff bubble teams in the Eastern Conference and has this to say about the Rangers chances...

"Inconsistency has plagued the Rangers since November as concerns have centered upon their depth at all positions. A better overall effort will be required for the Blueshirts to make the playoffs. Star goalie Henrik Lundqvist and superstar sniper Marian Gaborik have done their best carrying this club, but they’ll need their teammates to step up down the stretch." can add needing increased team toughness. Don't think teams around the league didn't take notice of the pounding last night. The Rangers were exposed as a soft team.

...sure the Blueshirts have a few players who can fight, but are you telling me teams with legitimate tough guys are going to be scared of Voros, Avery and a washed up Brashear. I think not.

Friday Headlines

New York Post - Blueshirts show little fight in loss

Daily News - What happened? New York Rangers suddenly lacking punch, fall to Philadelphia Flyers, 2-0

Newsday - Rangers shut out by Flyers, 2-0

Bergen Record - Flyers beat up Rangers, 2-0, in Philadelphia

Bergen Record - Rangers notes: John Tortorella fiesty in postgame press conference

Bergen Record - John Halligan, NHL and Rangers publicist

Video: Torts vs. Brooks Post Game Fireworks

Since cut out John Tortorella going at it with the Post's Larry Brooks during Tort's press conference after tonight's loss to the Flyers, here is what I found on YouTube...

...h/t to for the better quality video.

Licking His Chops & Third Man In

Here's Dan Carcillo's quote on his fight with Gaborik...

“I didn’t really expect to fight who I fought, but it kind of worked out,” Carcillo said. “I don’t know who on that line would have been able to help him though. I wasn’t expecting him to drop his gloves, but when he did, I pretty much was licking my chops.”

...Sunday, March 14th will be Brashear's opportunity to make up for everything gone wrong this season. If I see a thorough beatdown of this guy I will stop all criticisims of Brash.

One issue brough up in the post game presser was that no Ranger jumped in to protect Gaborik. Here is Andrew Gross at Ranger Rants feelings...

"Tortorella would not address whether he thought his players should have stepped in immediately but several players did say that was addressed quickly and that, if a situation like this ever arises again, Tortorella expects somebody else to step in so Gaborik is not taking punches. It’s a fine line with the instigator rule. I was probably a little too hard on Dan Girardi in my early game story because Girardi is in a jam there, standing less than a foot away as Carcillo is punching away at Gaborik. It’s still a 1-0 game with two points on the line that literally could decide whether the Rangers make the playoffs or not. If Girardi gets involved he’s done and the Rangers play the rest of the way with five defensemen.It’s a split-second decision for Girardi, step in or not. Plus, the fight was over quickly. Turns out, the right move there would have been to take the instigator penalty and protect Gaborik, but that’s a lot to process for Girardi in those few seconds."

...i'm sorry nothing to process there. You see someone pounding on your best player and you jump in. Very easy.