Rangers clinch their spot versus the Isles. There has to be nothing more satisfying to them. And that should be a stick in one's craw.
Ted Nolan seemed to satisfied with the Isles effort. Obviously, he is easy to please these days. The way the Isles played this game as compared to the NJ where they competed, is just night and day. And I find it hard to believe someone walked out of the Coliseum satisfied with the Isles. And somehow the coach was? Ok, maybe it's just positive spin, especially with so many kids playing. But as a fan, I wasn't happy with what was on that ice.
This is not to discount some individual efforts, like Okposo, Comeau, and Park. Martinek was the Isles offense last night with 6 shots. Great effort, but if your dman accounts for most of your offense in an Isle/Ranger game, of all things, there is a serious problem.
Hillen played very poised for his first game, thrown into a rivalry pressure-cooker. He had one shot, and even on the plus/minus. Not bad at all for a first game to someone who probably shouldn't have been there. In fact, if you read between the lines of Nolan's post-game, he made sure to allude to that very fact. So, did Snow force in Hillen on Nolan? Or just, in lieu of this team basically being a farm team currently, someone said: well, what the hell? Throw him in with them.
Where was Kip Brennan last night? Yes, he came out for a short bit to throw some hits. But, where was the fight. The fighting of Kip? Maybe. how about the fight of this team? The Isles seemed to allow the Rangers to control the game, tempo and individual battles. And allowing that, especially from the Rangers, to me, is a crime.
Last night, all 3 Gallof boys gathered at in my abode in glorious Freeport. I chose to make my last Blog Box game the NJ game on Tuesday. Allowing us to continue what has turned into a very popular Sibling Rivalry theme blogs that I do with my Ranger blogging brother.
We had an Isles/Ranger hockey game, a barrel of hot wings, a vat of blue cheese and a laptop. The following is our live blog from the evening.
So here we are. We dress in sloppy clothes, anticipating the pieces of wing and blue cheese that will invariably end up on your shirts. We watch Wang asked about Ted Nolan's final contract year, and watch him fall over himself to explain how he will do nothing. As BD said, that one year might be pivotal and no contract forthcoming until things turn around. Will Snow adds some pieces so they can do so?
Avery is looking to welcome Okposo to the league. I like it, because Kyle needs to see what a rivalry is all about in the big league. Ain't gonna be a cakewalk. This is the type of game and pressure I want to see him face and break through. Even if he falters, it will be two key games for him.
Our wings are getting cold. Time to make "the boy", the youngest Gallof brother serve them up. Hop to it Phillip.
I wonder if Avery will do to Okposo what Ulf Samuelson did to Todd Bertuzzi. Bertuzzi was gentle as a lamb before ole Ulf drove him to drink, heavily.
As for this game it looks like Shanahan will not be back tonight, hopefully he'll be in the mix for tomorrow's game at MSG. The first five minutes have been scoreless but I am somewhat concerned by the amount of turnovers committed by the Rangers in both the neutral and offensive zones. The Islanders are much more active in the offensive zone due to those.
BD just served me a plateful of juicy succulent wings, so I am handing this badboy over.
Penalty on the Rangers ...CHOMP...CHOMP...CHOMP.... Isles PP.
Isles on the PP goes without at least a breakaway by the opposition. BUT, they manage only one shot.
Let me delve into the Wang comments to Howie Rose this commercial break. Now, despite that I harped that the "lame duck" status was highly overrated by the media, especially in lieu that many players take one year deals, it was quite interesting to hear Wang basically seem to fall into the same line of thought. I think there might be a bit more to a purported rift due to Wang's answers. He committed to nothing, trying to circle the wagons that it's an internal matter. And that, from a guy who is usually pretty straightforward, DOES NOT necessarily bode well.
But, we'll see what happens. Ovechkin just scored on the Lightning his 64th goal. Caps are breathing down the Rangers neck.
I'd hand the laptop to Scott or "the boy" but both are wrestling with their wings. So we are left with one another. Ack....Isles with a slashing on Jagr. Guerin goes to the box. I guess the Russians don't want their new candidate too bruised.
Jagr gets the tally with a screen in front of Dubie. Textbook offense and PP work. Isles coaching should note it.
Scott ran into the bathroom to clean his hands. I hear him smash into things. Doofus!
Who leaves a scale in the middle of the bathroom floor??! Its not like BD can even see what it says past his gut!
First off, what a shift by the Rangers to draw the penalty. Then a beautiful give and go between Jagr and Backman and Straka was johnny-on-the-spot with the screen. The Rangers needed the power play to be effective and they just got a big goal on it.
As I'm typing this Meyer gets called for holding and right off the faceoff Dubinsky gets the puck over to Jagr. Jagr doesn't hesitate and fires one past Dubie for his second power play goal of the game! 2 for 2 baby! Btw I just found out, the Islanders blogger doesn't know how to spell his backup goaltender's name.
As the period winds down to the two minute mark, the Rangers have taken over the game. The Islanders just took their third penalty of the period. Satan just got called for tripping, the Islanders announcers disagree with the call. I was typing, so I didn't see it clearly and they haven't showed a replay yet.
Rangers are cycling the puck well. Gomez almost got a tip in but it went over the net. Jagr almost scores his third but was blocked. Looks like the period will run out with the Rangers with a good 2-0 lead.
That first power play goal was key to changing the momentum of the first period. I hope this is a sign that both Jagr and the power play are heating up, this would be the ideal time.
I'd like to announce to everyone that I took the extra wing. House rules!
I'd like to take this moment to introduce the 3rd Gallof brother. The youngest of the trio, who I just disrupted his cigarette break. Time to meet the peeps, punk!
First off, I would like to mention I am not, or ever will be the Devils blogger. (as rumor has it) Just because there are three of us doesn't mean we follow the three teams in a 30 mile radius.
I feel privileged to be part of this live blog, and as a Ranger fan, like my brother with a better taste in sports teams, I'm enjoying the early lead.
If this game continues this way, it will be great to know we will be continuing our path to the cup while DiPietro is yelling "Fore!" praying that his brittle hip doesn't shatter on a overextended golf swing.
Path to cup? Why, is 7-11 running a special on Big Gulps, Short Round? Look at the putrid Ranger PP versus Bridgeport...I mean the Isles...I mean Bridgeport. I feel like Faye Dunaway in Chinatown.
It's a shame, because the Isles came out hard. And Billy Jaffe is 1000% correct. Jagr is getting free due to Witt not being in the game. Witt is usually the guy who checkmates the Czech.
One note: Isles are not doing their 2nd period ebb like in the past few games.
Is it just me, or are you tired of the stupid Geico caveman can do it. Geico, overpriced price-gouging, seeping the Long Islander pockets just like the rest of the fat cats in the car insurance industry. Amazing how companies like to pretend that they aren't sucking on your soul.
I think goes to the Russian Super League isn't so super, unless the skaters wear capes and leotards. This Jagr talk about going to Russia seems rather odd, especially when most teams want to talk and focus on playoffs. Odd timing and antics that distract from what is far more important . . . losing to the Isles and giving their playoff spot to the Capitals.
Putrid power play?!? We got two power play goals there chuckles! Speaking of putrid power plays, the Islanders didn't even get a shot on goal in that last one.
As for the Jagr rumors, I do agree this is not the time and place for such things. Whatever it is that Jagr plans to do next season should wait until the playoffs are over before they are spoken of publicly.
As the second period is winding down, BD finally lets us watch the Rangers telecast. Ahh Sam Rosen, his golden voice just cradles me to sleep at night. Seems that the game has definitely slowed down some. Gomez just almost scored on Lundqvist, oy vey.
Rangers will be going on another power play as Callahan draws one on a good play with Dawes and Drury. Drury put the puck in the net, but after the whistle blew. Senor Clutch may not be needed in this one.
BD: Senor Clutch? Holy awful nicknames, Batman! Someone should bean you over the head with a Piñata.
But give the Rangers their due, they are outplaying the Isles. Isles came out well, and suddenly went into a shell. Jagr and a poised early PP has been the difference. Moreover, NYR has been grinding it out since. Isles have had little chances and very little high energy. It's only high energy that would have kept the Isles in it. Period 3 must have them buzzing, or this game is a lost cause. And for a last homegame to a disappointed Isles fan crowd, you'd expect better.
Jack Hillen has 11:04 of icetime and even on the +/-. Not bad.
Kip Brennan with just above 4 minutes. Maybe some fists would help right about now? Where is the fight to this team?
Rangers back on the Isles doorstep. Jagr is everywhere. Witt!!! Comeback and plow him into the boards.
We are seeing a glimpse of vintage Jagr here, he is playing with confidence and is controlling the tempo of this game. If he can find this going into the playoffs the Rangers' chances will go up dramatically.
Rangers are continuing to attack the Islanders and are getting some big chances. The Rangers are 15 minutes away from clinching a playoff berth with a sold 2 goal lead. Though us Ranger fans will feel a whole lot better with another goal... just in case!
Oh and BD wants to pick on me for the senor clutch nickname, let me remind him the Islanders GM was once called "Snow Plow". As I informed the esteemed Islanders' blogger of this he just simply retorted, "Well, he sure snow plowed the Islanders this season." Maybe if he would have signed ole senor clutch instead of the Rangers, BD would feel differently.
El Snow Plow actually had Drury in his sights, offering more years, if memory serves. But alas, Drury went to NYR. But Snow did have a lot of players on his wishlist. Smyth, Drury, even Kariya. But, alas, it was that his list lacked depth. Because when they all went elsewhere, we were stuck with some flunky tires which hit the road alright. And that worn rubber blew out not soon after.
And a deflected goal by Straka goes of Meyer's stick. 3-0 Rangers.
Isles just not having a good game. You know something is horribly wrong when Radek Martinek leads in shots, with 4.
Phil, you are up.
Looking back on this blog its quick to notice how tame the barbs back and forth are between our two bloggers. I attribute this to the fact BD's sharp anti-Rangers venom has dulled to "We'll get you next year" and "Watch what Snow Plow does in the off season." before he sulks in his chair and plans his next blog. The Islander's live blog from Pebble Beach.
Scott is screaming for a Jagr hat trick, 3-0 is not enough for the man, the knife needs to be fully driven in.
This ended up being a great evening in Freeport. Buffalo wings followed by a playoff birth clinched by the Rangers. This will all be topped off by a victory cigar outside BD's apartment. Maybe BD can celebrate a better draft position. (he gave me that line).
And, as the 3rd Gallof brother, I bid you a hello and a goodbye, heathens.
B.D. I was at the game. What I don't understand is why we NEVER have any toughness. The organization that built on toughness in the 70's (remember that Nystrom, Howatt, Gillies and Hart were here before Trots and Bossy) has never built on toughness since. It is maddening. Anaheim built on toughness, and now we get out-toughed by even the Rangers. I don't get it. i think the fans would support a rebuilding overhaul if we built tough....what do you think?