NYR/MTL 10/8 Review: Alain Vigneault, Marc Staal & Henrik Lundqvist Live To See Another Day, Lundqvist & Rangers Shut Out The Habs, The Goalie Match-Up That Wasn’t Supposed To Happen, Don’t Buy a Chytil Jersey Just Yet, Zibanejad Continues To Shine, The Latest MSG Networks Feature & More From NYR’s First W of the Season

Just like Steve Urkel and Stefan Urquelle from “Family Matters”, it was nice to see Henrik Lundqvist and not Henrik Lundswiss, show up with the game on the line tonight. Photo Credit: NYR

What’s up everyone and welcome to another blog here on BlueCollarBlueShirts.com. What a huge day of sports, especially for fans in the New York area. For me, I’m a fan of the Giants, the Rangers and the Yankees. Not going to lie, going into today, I really thought all three of my teams would lose and the highlight of my night would be watching “Curb Your Enthusiasm.” In fact, if the Rangers lost tonight, I was going to skip doing this blog, so I can catch up on my Sunday TV shows, which at this present time are “Curb”, “Last Man On Earth”, “Bar Rescue”, “Vice Principals” and “Fear The Walking Dead.”

However, with the way the Rangers won tonight, I knew if I skipped this blog, I wouldn’t hear the end of it. If I’m going to do a hit piece on Lundswiss, like I did last night, I have to be fair and talk about when he does well too. However, more on Lundqvist and tonight’s game against the Canadiens in a minute.

If you’re like me, today was a long day. From watching the Giants officially throw their hat into the race for the number 1 pick in the draft, to the Yankees fighting to play for another game and to my dreadful fantasy football team, it was a great day to work on my ass groove on the couch.

On an aside, I know everyone hates fantasy football stories and hearing about other people’s teams. That said (take a shot), I use these blogs to vent. I just want to mention that my stupid fucking fantasy football team is now 1-4. While I got crushed this week, I should be 4-1. For three weeks straight, I had the second most points in the league. Unfortunately, I was playing the team with the highest score for three consecutive weeks. When you score 120+ points for three weeks straight, and lose all three games, you know it’s just not your year. Fuck it, I’m taking a knee on fantasy football!

As I type these words to you, I’m extremely pumped up, as the Yankees, after Joe Girardi tried to start his vacation on Columbus Day, won tonight and will force a Game 4 tomorrow. Even better, the Rangers won their first game of the season. I really wonder what the Vegas odds were on Henrik Lundqvist having a shut out and Tanaka having his best game of the season on the same day?

“Hey Hank, do you think that kid Matt Murray will let us see his Stanley Cups? He does have one for each of us…” Photo Credit: Montreal Canadiens

Before jumping into tonight’s game, let me link you to my last few blogs, in case you missed them. Make sure to check out my blog from last night, if you haven’t already:

NYR/TOR 10/7 Review: Lundqvist Takes His Throne on the Bench After Another Shellacking, Time To Move On & Accept The Inevitable About the 2017-2018 Rangers, AV Haters Riled Up, Tough Time for NYC, High Scores Around The League & More From a Brutal Loss in Toronto


BCBS: Look Ma, No Politics! Filip Chytil Gets/Earns The Chance of a Lifetime, Rangers Roster Announced, NYR Preview, Young Guns, Tough Schedule, ESPN Plagiarism, NYR D, CZAR IGOR, How CTE Developments Are Going to Change Sports Forever & Where Were You When You Were 18 Years Old?


BCBS: What We’ve Learned From The Rangers Preseason, The “Barely Legal” Line & Why It Should Happen, The Marc Staal Problem, Dave Maloney, Too Many Damn Penalties, Avery vs Torts, Donald Trump vs Sports, Anthony DeAngelo Attacked by NY Post, Patriotism in Sports, Jagr Watch & Much More From Rangers Preseason


Hockey’s Back! NHL 2017-2018 Predictions: Analyzing All 31 NHL Teams, Who Will Win The Cup, Who Makes The Playoffs, Whose Window is Closing, Teams on the Rise, Who Fails & More. Plus: New York Rangers Preseason Preview & Thoughts.


New York Ranger Media Day Thoughts, AV’s Craziness and Why I’m Still Skeptical. Plus: An In-Depth “Behind the Bench” Book Review, as Craig Custance Interviews 10 Of The Best Coaches in the NHL Today, Including John Tortorella!


Frank Boucher Update: The Boucher Family Shares Exclusive Pictures/Heirlooms From Frank Boucher’s Career, The Latest Update on Trying To Get The Rangers To Notice The Greatest Ranger Of Them All, The Frank Boucher Award & More


After being smoked like beef jerky, Henrik Lundqvist had his best game of the season on Sunday night. I still am not feeling the new fedora, even if it’s something the “OOH LA LA” Rangers would’ve wore. Go back to the black Broadway Hat.

 

The Rangers defeated the Montreal Canadiens, 2-0, at home on Sunday night. As a result, the Rangers picked up their first win and first two points of the season.  After allowing 12 goals in 2 games and seeing Lundswiss yanked the night prior, the Rangers & Lundqvist rebounded and collectively, as a team, put on their best performance of this young season. I say they collectively did it, because the Rangers scored five goals on Saturday and really, ran into a hot goalie during their home opener. If anything, it was Lundwiss that was struggling and he needed to get a win.  That said (that’s two shots), the team, as a whole, had their best night, thus far. You hope this is what happens regularly, but the jaded fan in me thinks otherwise. However, I must give credit where credit is due, Lundqvist played well tonight and so did the team.

There was a lot of drama before this game. Two former Vezina winners (neither have a Stanley Cup & most likely will never win one, due to their respective salaries that handcuff their respective teams) in Henrik Lundwiss & Carey “Fisher” Price (I call him Fisher Price, because the only Stanley Cup he will ever hold will be a toy one.) weren’t supposed to start this game.

The Rangers and Canadiens both played last night on the road. The Capitals torched the Canadiens 6-1 and ran Price out of the game. The Leafs, as recapped in the blog above, put 5 goals past Lundswiss, and ran him out of the game on Saturday as well. In a game where both teams were playing the second set of a back-to-back, this game was supposed to feature Montreal’s Al Montoya vs the Rangers Ondrej Pavelec. However, with both Vezina winners getting embarrassed & pulled the night prior, both goalies were chomping at the bit to get back on the ice. Both Claude Julien of Montreal & Alain Vigneault of NYR, happily obliged. For the fans who paid to see this game, they got to see two ex Vezina winners, rather than two back-ups.

You may wish to hold off on buying your Chytil jersey. Photo Credit: Getty Images.

After a great preseason, it seems that Filip Chytil may not be long for the Rangers in the 2017-2018 season. After only two games, it seems that Alain Vigneault has given up on the teenager, as Chytil was a healthy scratch tonight. After the game, AV said they would re-evaluate Chytil, which is code for “See Ya.”

As discussed on this blog, for as much as I lead the “Trade Lundwiss Train”, there is a huge contingent of Ranger fans on the “FIRE AV” bandwagon. That bandwagon was busting at the seams, as before the game tonight, it was announced that AV was scratching Chytil & Brendan Smith, in favor of going with 11 forwards and 7 defensemen. Making their 2017-2018 Rangers debut on Sunday evening were defensemen Nick Holden and Steve Kampfer. Even more shocking, Marc Staal was put on the first pair with Ryan McDonagh, as Kevin Shattenkirk was shifted to the second pair with Brady Skjei. Anthony DeAngelo was also a victim, as while he was in the line-up, he received less than four minutes of ice-time.

Speaking of ice-time, I wonder how you get into that profession. I figure there has to be what, at least three people tracking the “Time on Ice” stat? Do you have to go to college for that? Is it a union job? These are all questions that demand answers. It must also be fun for the parents of these stopwatch freaks and geeks.

I mean, just imagine two parents at the supermarket:

“Oh, my Johnny just got his doctorate and will be teaching Harvard in the fall. How is little Bartholomew doing?”

“He’s a professional stopwatch timer.”

Granted, I’m trying to be funny here, but you get my point.

Image result for alain vigneault laughing

While I wouldn’t say Alain Vigneault had the last laugh, as we’re only three games into the season, he sure had plenty to smile about after this game. In fact, I wouldn’t be surprised if AV & Lundqvist went to a bar after the game and shared a drink together, while laughing maniacally, like a pair of 80’s movie villains. After all, you got my fat mouth making the word “Lundwiss” part of the Rangers lexicon and you got other fans tweeting “FIRE AV” relentlessly. For one night, everything came up AV & Lundqvist.

Can you imagine if the Rangers lost this game and Hank gave up some bad goals? I would be unbearable. You would also have every fan riled up about AV benching Chytil and Smith, who just got a four year deal. To be clear, Brendan Smith was a healthy scratch. There was no injury. When he signed the dotted line over the summer, giving him nearly $18M for four years, I doubt he thought he would be scratched in game 3 of the season

Even better for AV, not only did his substitutions work out, he got a Grade A effort from his overpaid and overrated goaltender. That allows some media to do their “KING IS BACK” shit. As the highest paid goalie in the league, and being the guy the team is built around, the team can not afford Lundqvist to ever be average or slip. You know my feelings on this already, so I’m not going to rehash that.

In another move, by putting Staal, who the majority of Ranger fans kill (not literally, I’m talking verbally over the internet) every night, on the first D pair, AV opened himself up to criticism. After his best offensive performance in some time the night before, Staal had a good defensive effort, here in this game. He was even blocking slap shots. I won’t degrade Dan Girardi by saying “Girardi Who?”, but Staal, who was never the same player after injury, sacrificed himself out there.

For AV, his button pushing worked. For one night at least. Ranger fans are fickle and hockey can be very streaky. I’m sure it won’t be long before I’m calling for CZAR IGOR again (And even with Hank’s win tonight, I still want CZAR IGOR here ASAP) and the FIRE AV fans are calling for Ruff to replace AV.

Let’s get to the official box score from ESPN.com, then get to the game itself:

1st Period Summary

Time Team Scoring Detail MTL NYR
17:25
Brady Skjei (1)
Assists: Michael Grabner, J.T. Miller
0 1
Time Team Penalty Detail
12:09
Kevin Shattenkirk: 2 Minutes for Slashing

2nd Period Summary

Time Team Scoring Detail MTL NYR
No scoring this period 0 1
Time Team Penalty Detail
3:11
Paul Byron: 2 Minutes for Slashing
9:38
Jeff Petry: 2 Minutes for Holding
19:09
Jonathan Drouin: 2 Minutes for High-sticking

3rd Period Summary

Time Team Scoring Detail MTL NYR
9:13
Mika Zibanejad (4)
Assists: Pavel Buchnevich, Chris Kreider
0 2
Time Team Penalty Detail
No penalties this period

Goaltending Summary

Montreal Canadiens Goaltending

Player SA GA Saves SV% TOI PIM
C. Price 25 2 23 .920 57:33 0

New York Rangers Goaltending

Player SA GA Saves SV% TOI PIM
H. Lundqvist 34 0 34 1.000 59:47 0

Mika Zibanejad has a lot to smile about. He’s scored in every game this season and is doing his best to hold down the number 1 center role. Photo Credit: SNY.tv

As was the case the night before, this game was a tale of two periods. The Canadiens, who were just as hungry as the Rangers for a win and looking to extract some revenge, after the playoff exit last season to the Rangers, came out on fire. They were all over the Rangers and dominated the puck possession. They were on the attack for the first five minutes of the game. The Rangers would be able to hold them off and even create two different two on one opportunities, but couldn’t convert. That’s a drill the Rangers should practice, because you can’t keep coming up empty handed on these odd-man rushes.

In something out of “Bizarro World”, the Rangers won two different challenges. In both scenarios, Henrik Lundqvist was the victor. This game could’ve gone a lot differently if the “SCREW THE RANGERS” button was pressed.

In the first challenge, Lundqvist went to stop a shot, but it trickled by him and sat next to the netting outside of the goal post. Andrew Shaw kicked at it and the puck went by Lundqvist. It was ruled a goal on the ice. However, after a video replay, (take notice Joe Girardi) the goal was waved off because of the kick. Lundqvist was going nuts before the replay, and he was TRIGGERED. (A word that has taken a new meaning this year.)

While live, it looked like a good goal, but during the slo-mo replay, you could see it was kicked in. That said (Another shot) Lundqvist did not cover the puck correctly. I really felt if the goal was allowed to stand, he would’ve been rattled and been full of anxiety.

I also found it odd that the play was allowed to continue, because usually in these situations, you see the quick whistle. I was kinda surprised we didn’t get one here. I could understand Lundqvist’s frustration, but by being so animated, he always allows the other team to know when he’s off his game.

Less than three minutes later, another Montreal goal would be called off. This time, the captain of the Canadiens, Max Pacioretty, would be ruled for interference. I still don’t get the interference call. If the goalie is interfered with on a scoring play, why isn’t a penalty called? While I was fairly certain the Shaw goal would be erased, this call I wasn’t so sure of, as it looked like Pacioretty was pushed by the Rangers into Lundqvist. However, the replay gods had their Blueshirt sweaters on and erased this goal. In other words, this game could’ve been 2-0 early and the Rangers could’ve had a shaken Lundqvist in net. Instead, the score remained 0-0 and Hank was able to settle down.

You can watch both eventual non-goals here:

 Not good for Canada’s Thanksgiving Day https://t.co/9COLxofgcy

Brady Skjei and Lundqvist looked good against Montreal. Photo Credit: NYR & Getty Images.

We all know that feeling when we feel fucked by the refs. That’s what the Canadiens were going through, after having two goals disallowed. Shea Weber looked frustrated, as he started teeing off like a madman. This is where you missed Dan Girardi, as no one was risking an injury by jumping in front of one of his vicious slappers. After sustaining this storm, the Rangers woke up and started bringing the fight to the Habs.

During the Rangers attack and a few saves by Lundqvist, we got the “POTVIN SUCKS” chant. I fucking hate this chant. It makes us Ranger fans look like idiots. For starters, 90% of the people doing the chant couldn’t pick Potvin out of a line-up, nor knew who he injured and the year it happened. Secondly, Potvin won four cups, which is the same amount of Cups the Rangers have in 90 years. Thirdly, saying something “SUCKS” is very unoriginal and corny. It sounds stupid when the Devil fans add the word “SUCKS” to every chant. And lastly, if you have to say something sucks, why not just use the name of the team you’re playing?

Aside from the “POTVIN SUCKS” chants, you also had the “HEN-RIK” chants. Those don’t bother me, because you’re cheering your guy on. While I think it’s silly to chant an overrated and overpaid egomaniac failure on, at the expense of the team, I understand why it happens & have no problems with it. It also shows me that some fans of this team would rather see the back of the jersey win a Cup, than see the front of the jersey win the Cup.

Towards the end of the first period, Brady Skjei took a wild shot and somehow & someway, the puck found Shea Weber’s skate and deflected by Carey Price. 1-0 good guys and the first lead of the 2017-2018 season. It would be the only goal the Rangers needed. It was quite the lucky goal, but it doesn’t matter how you score them, as long as you score them.

After twenty, 1-0 Rangers.

Of note, I found it hilarious when resident Lundswiss shrill, Joe Micheletti, said Lundqvist was having a fabulous game. If anything, the video replay guys were the real MVP’s!

I wonder if Max Pacioretty would be a bigger star to American fans if he played for an American franchise. Montreal is the crème de la crème, but it is its own different world at the same time.

Of note, Anthony DeAngelo played less than a minute in the first period. That Stepan/Raanta trade is great for a team looking to win now…… (Get your Borat voice ready)…… NOT!

The Rangers opened up the second period on the PP. I don’t know if this is a good thing, but I just expect Zibanejad to convert on every PP now! However, after producing goals on the PP in the first two games of the season, the Rangers went 0-3. Despite giving up a breakaway opportunity, I thought the Rangers PP looked good, even if they didn’t score. They moved the puck well and Price made some good saves. The PK, which has been dreadful, was 0/1, so that tells you the Rangers were disciplined tonight.

A couple of highlights in the second period saw Tony DeAngelo make a great pass to Rick Nash, but Nash, like Grabner in the first period, couldn’t finish on the odd man rush opportunity. The other big highlight saw KEVIN SHATTENSMASH, absolutely level Brendan Gallagher. We saw a little mean streak from Shatty tonight, as he took the lone Rangers penalty after a blatant cross check.

Another highlight or legit LOL moment for me, was watching Kreider screen Price on the PP. I have some Hab fan friends, and they expressed how irate they were about this. I’m sure Price wasn’t thrilled with CK either.

Both teams played hard, but as Steve Valiquette would later go on to say in the post-game, both teams allowed their goalies to work. Shots came in clear and there wasn’t much lateral movement or many one-timers. Both Price and Lundqvist did their job and the game remained 1-0 good guys after 40 minutes of action.

Call me a fanboy or an overgrown man child all you want, but even though Shattenkirk is younger than me, I’m proud to hold his jersey up too. I also realized that the only Ranger older than me is Lundswiss. He has me by three months. Photo Credit: NYR & MSG Networks.

I’m going to talk more about the MSG Networks crew at the end of this, but two things that I enjoyed for different reasons were Al Trautwig’s interview with Steve Kampfer. Not that Kampfer had anything mind-blowing to say, I just thought it was funny that Trautwig said “see ya dude”, to close the interview.

If you’re a sports fan, it’s not up for debate – Keith Hernandez is the best at what he does. I’m a Yankees fan and I say that. Nose-to-nose with him is Ron Duguay. The reason I enjoy both of these ex-players, is because while they played for the team and are homers, neither are scared to criticize their team. That makes their words more credible. It’s not just rainbows and marshmallows with those guys. It’s why I can’t stand Joe Micheletti. How can anyone take him serious when nothing is ever bad? Doogie and Hernandez, while professional, will call out their respective teams when things aren’t good. That’s honesty and as a viewer, I respect that.

Duguay, who is always on the money, said something during this break that was 100% dead-on. He said that the Rangers were playing more physical and talked about Shatty stepping out of his element with hits. He said that physicality is contagious and when younger players see veterans do it, the team feeds off it. Even better, as a fan, Doogie said how the fans in the crowd, at MSG, wake up too. That’s coming from a player who knows the game, knows the team and knows the venue. He’s right too.

Goals are sexy and fun to watch, but nothing produces a reaction like a big hit or a fight. Every fan, no matter who you’re cheering for, stands up and gets loud. A big hit or a fight could change the tone of the game, so I was glad to hear Duguay say that.

In the third period, Marc Staal, who has been the ire of many Ranger fans, continued to play well. He started diving at pucks & making blocks, which tells me he wanted to see his buddy Lundqvist get the shut-out. Marc Staal has something to prove too. We all know about Marc Staal & I think it’s universally agreed – he has a terrible contract. That said (there’s another shot) I thought these last two games, were better than any game he played, in the last calendar year.

On an aside – blame Gary Bettman, and not me, for talking about contracts. In this hard cap NHL, salary cap hits are a factor when assessing a player.

At the half-way mark of the third period, after some tit-for-tat action, Mika Zibanejad scored on a ridiculous shot from a sickening angle. He probably had three inches of space to shoot at, but was still able to beat Carey Price with the puck. I still don’t know how that went in. 2-0 good guys.

Montreal would pull Price with about 180 seconds of ticks on the clock. The Rangers were able to fight off the 6 vs 5 attack. Eventually the clock wound down, the Rangers won, got their first two points and Henrik Lundqvist recorded his 62nd career shutout.  For Lundqvist, after the first two games, this was a much needed victory, for not only himself, but for the Rangers. The shutout was just the cherry on top.

As usual, Henrik Lundqvist will dominate the headlines.

With the shutout, of course all you’ll read about is “KING” this and “KING” that and about Hank’s shutout. What you won’t read about is the Rangers defense. It’s amazing how to some people, it’s always the defense’s fault after a loss and never Hank’s. However, to those same people, that logic doesn’t apply when Lundqvist records a shutout.

Furthermore – wouldn’t it be great if the first two goals Hank gives up, are disallowed every game? That would be the only way I see Lundqvist winning a Cup. This game doesn’t change anything to me. You’re not gonna win Cup when your roster is built around a goalie, rather than being deep up the middle. It’s a great win and I’m happy to see it though.

It just amazes me how 5 goals allowed in one period is everyone else’s fault but Hank’s, but a shutout is all him. Come on man!

Even after the game, Hank threw his team under the bus again. That stuff drives me nuts and is part of the reason why I don’t like him.

I mean, he actually said this:

“It’s such a big difference to play in a game where everybody knows what’s happening out there.”

It’s probably also a big difference for players to play with a goalie who can make a save. Or hold a two goal lead. Or doesn’t cry. Or not be Jean Pageau’s bitch.

Hank would later credit the team for playing well after the win, but he couldn’t help himself and had to take a shot about last night.

I’m telling you – I can’t wait for books 10 years from now, when his ex-teammates openly talk about what an asshole he was to play with. I know goalies can be weird cats, but I just can’t take all the throwing the team under the bus stuff. I still wish AV gave him the Patrick Roy treatment last night!

I know some of you are probably shaking your heads as you read this, but in reality, all I want to see is the Rangers winning the Cup. You know my arguments on this topic already. Outside of maybe Ovechkin or Iginla, no one deserves a Cup more than Lundqvist. I just think the Rangers, as a team, are better off without his cap hit.

All in all, this was a great win for the Rangers. I know many of you are messaging me about the shutout, but these games seem more “vintage”, than on the regular these days. We all want the Cup and I still don’t see it with this guy/roster construction.

You won’t find a better staff of people doing a pre-game or post-game show in the league.

I know I’ve talked a lot about the MSG Networks on this blog, but I just want to add some more thoughts about them. After all, it seems everyone else ignores them when they talk about the games. You only get this stuff here!

This was the first game of the season that I watched the entire game, from pregame to post game. I attended opening night and I watched last night’s game at a bar.

I watch a lot of hockey. I have the NHL package, which allows me to watch both feeds of any game. I have two TVs at my house that I use to watch games. Obviously, the Rangers game takes precedent, but on Ranger off nights, I’m usually watching two other games. I’m also watching every Oilers game and have now added the Coyotes to my normal viewing, just because I want to track Raanta & Stepan.

When it comes to the broadcast crews of the Canadian teams, outside of Don Cherry and Gene Principe of the Oilers, many of the people on those crews are kinda dry. Maybe it’s an American vs Canadian thing, but they seem to be more serious. There is a time and place for that, and I get that, but as a viewer, it doesn’t hurt to have a chuckle in there as well. I mean, if you watch any of the NFL pregame shows, there’s always ball breaking and some light-hearted stuff, in between the serious analysis. That’s why I say it could be an American vs Canadian culture thing.

While I can’t claim to watch every broadcast crew regularly, I have seen most of them multiple times. NO ONE does it like the Rangers.

Maybe I’m nostalgic here, but no one was better to me than JD and Sam Rosen. While I will agree with fans who say Rosen has lost a step, Rosen is the closest thing hockey fans have to a Vin Scully. Yes, I know Doc Emrick is more acclaimed, and I’m biased, but I’m a Sam Rosen guy.

While I believe Joe Micheletti is the weak link of the MSG crew, I only believe that because he’s such a homer and scared to say anything that goes against the grain. I really wish Dave Maloney was shifted to the booth and Micheletti did the radio.

John Giannone does a good job calling the games when Sam is out doing the NFL. He is a straight man, so when Sam is out, I don’t need Micheletti to be rah-rah. I would rather Dave Maloney, who is just fantastic on the radio. He brings more color and speaks openly.

While I think Dave Maloney belongs in the booth, his new roving reporter segment has me in tears.

A new feature this season by the MSG Networks, is having Dave Maloney parade around the locker room for interviews. I don’t know if this is meant to be intentionally funny, but I can’t stop cracking up when he does this. Even Trautwig was laughing tonight.

After games, Maloney is just walking around the locker room, looking for people to talk with him. This feels like something out of the WWF attitude era, with Vince Russo as head writer. It also comes off as raw and real. With everything today so slickly, micro-managed and produced, this is a breath of fresh air. As a fan, I enjoy this.

When it comes to Al Trautwig – full disclosure, he blocked me on twitter. Why did he block me? Because I asked him about this: http://newyork.cbslocal.com/2013/11/14/islanders-fan-angry-al-trautwig-called-my-mom/

That said, (I’m getting you drunk tonight, but it’s okay, today is a holiday)  I really enjoy the buddy-cop thing that him and Steve Valiquette have going. Some fan tweeted me the other night, saying it looked like they were going at it, but based on last season & what I saw tonight, you could see it’s just breaking balls. That’s stuff fans want to see. I want to see friends having a good time. I don’t want stiffness. I want to see the ball-breaking and ribbing. It makes for a better broadcast. No other broadcast team in the league has the silly banter that these two have going on right now.

While on Vally, while I think he can be too apologetic to Lundqvist, (Last season, Vally called out Ranger fans, who pay the most amount of $ in the league for tickets, for booing Hank) he is probably one of the smartest young minds in the game today. I would be shocked if I’m not writing about him as a coach one day.

I must give credit where credit is due. I expected a verbal fellatio about Lundqvist after the game from him. Instead, he was the first person to talk about how great the team was in front of him. That’s consistency and showed me he doesn’t have a double-standard. The next time Lundswiss gets shellacked (it won’t be long), if Vally wants to blame the team in front of Hank, it won’t bother me, because when Lundqvist had a shut out, Vally talked about how great the team played.

Obviously, it’s easier to be more jovial after a win and we all want as many wins as possible, but I gotta say, I never know what to expect from Vally & Trautwig these days. That’s a good thing.

Ron Duguay still remains as one of the better analysts around, because he’s real. He doesn’t sell you shit and isn’t afraid to speak frankly. I have never felt lied to by him, which is a feeling you get from other broadcasters out there. While he is obviously a homer, he is fair. It’s not like he’s Troy Aikman talking the Cowboys or Michael Strahan talking the Giants. (To be fair, Strahan admits he is biased to the Giants, and really, how can you blame him?)

The under-appreciated Bill Pidto is also great in his limited role as the host of the pre and post game shows. His 150 seconds segment always works. I don’t know if he finds the clips himself, but he does a good job maximizing his air time.

On an aside, while on the MSG Networks, I really hope they bring back the MSG Hockey Show. I really enjoyed something different. It beats any of those liberal influenced ESPN talking head shows. One suggestion I would make would be to add Chris Roach, a Long Island comic and die hard Rangers fan to the show.

Chris Roach currently appears on “KEVIN CAN WAIT”, in a minor role. Speaking of that show, I was a huge “King of Queens” mark and have watched every episode of “KEVIN CAN WAIT”. I don’t know if anyone else watches it, but I wasn’t happy about them killing off the character of Donna Gable. Couldn’t they have made her a crazy cunt cult Scientologist instead, who disconnected from her family? What better way to introduce Leah Remini to the cast! It’s amazing, I like the work of James & Remini, but it’s hard for me take Remini seriously when I know she was brain-washed for 30+ years. At least these basement dwelling, Lundwiss tunnel vision, fans have only been brainwashed for 10 years!

As mentioned prior, I kinda had it with the NFL. That makes me even more invested in the NHL. I seek out podcasts, watch old clips/games, read books, etc. Roach has a podcast talking hockey. He’s a diehard fan. He’s also on a national TV show. Using his fame, while letting him talk about his passion (the Rangers) seems like a win-win for both parties. Or you could have me on the show, and I’ll gladly be the heel that show needs! I’ll work for tickets! No offense to Superman’s son, but his smarmy character/personality on the show is “go away” heat. Listening to him trash Anson Carter comes off like a dick to a viewer, even if they are cool in real life.

The Blues & Rangers have had a lot of cross over through the years.

Up next for the Rangers, the St. Louis Blues, at home, on Tuesday night. It will be the first time Shattenkirk, as a Ranger, laces up against his former one-time home. It’s also a game the Rangers need to win, considering the Blues are banged up.

Depending on my work schedule, I might go to the game via the Stubhub trick, which means with a 4:30AM alarm on Wednesday, no blog. If I decide to sacrifice going to a game live, for sleep, I’ll have a blog here Wednesday morning.

As always…

“LET’S GO RANGERS”

Sean McCaffrey

BULLSMC@aol.com

@NYCTHEMIC on tweeter

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *