|Watching NY Sports on Wednesday Night in style!
If you’re a single guy into sports, the above picture should be, at the very least, your set-up to watch sports! There are so many games going on at the same time, and the two TVs make sure I don’t miss a thing. I know it’s tough for the married folk to work this, so you get a pass. My advice is to sneak up this set-up when she’s sleeping. That’s what I did, anyway.
Wednesday was just another day where both the Knicks and Rangers had games. The Rangers game was more important, as the team is coming off a Stanley Cup run but has played inconsistent all season. After a brutal loss on Monday, the Rangers were reeling. In Minnesota, the Knicks were playing another one of their meaningless games. We all know it’s going to be the Cavs vs the Spurs this year anyway. That’s why I enjoy the NHL over the NBA, the NHL anyone can win the Cup, where in the NBA, only four teams realistically have a chance of winning the championship.
The two teams, the Knicks and the Rangers, both call MSG home. Both were coming off frustrating losses. However, it would be the Rangers who put a stop to the bleeding, while the Knicks continued their constant free-fall. It was to be expected. After all, the Knicks have done nothing to change their lackadasial play by their team of malcontents. The Rangers, however, called on number 33, Cam Talbot, to change their woes.
|Lundqvist is usually the shakiest thing in MSG
If you’re not familiar with my writing on the original DOI from years ago, then you might not know I can be a ball-breaker at times. If you’re a Ranger fan, upset at my recent writings about Henrik Lundqvist, then you know I’m a ball-breaker. And if you’re Ranger fan who agrees with me, then CONGRATULATIONS, WE DID IT!!!!
Ok, I’m just hamming it up here, but let’s put some facts into perspective here:
– Henrik Lundqvist is the most expensive goalie in the league, making $8.5 million a year, $1.5 million more than any other goalie in the NHL.
– Lundqvist hasn’t won a shoot-out all year.
– Lundqvist is 25th in the league in save percentage, with a .912 SVPCT.
– Lundqvist is 20th in the league in Goals Against Average, with a 2.57 GAA
– Lundqvist leads the league in blown leads and shootout losses.
– Lundqvist has blamed teammates for losses in the past.
– Lundqvist has made sure a coach has been fired during his tenure as Rangers netminder.
– Lundqvist has lost key rivalry games this year to the Islanders, Penguins, Montreal and Tampa.
– Lundqvist is a former Vezina winner.
– And for the sake of this blog, the Rangers, needing two points more than any other time in the season, after another brutal Lundqvist 5 Goals Allowed game, with the team criticized by the media and fans alike; turned to back-up goaltender Cam Talbot to bail them out.
If you’ve been reading my previous blogs, you know I’m a Cam Talbot fan. Check out my last post on why. In short, Talbot is much younger and is $8 million dollars cheaper. After a great rookie campaign last year, it may be time for the Rangers to see what they really have with him. It wasn’t long ago that Richter replaced Beezer. Perhaps there is a new King in town.
|IN CAM WE TRUST
The Rangers played remarkably last night and came out hot the second the puck dropped. If it wasn’t for the spectacular and highlight reel plays of Philly netminder, Steve Mason, the Rangers may have won this game 6-0. If that happened, we wouldn’t really be talking about Talbot right now, as it was the last 3:43 that defined this game for him. Mason may have played the best game in the league all year, stopping point blank shots, breakaways and constant powerplay shots. If he wasn’t so great last night, then Talbot’s play wouldn’t have mattered as much.
Talbot pitched a shutout, with 31 saves in the process. While the Rangers skated superbly, Talbot was truly tested at the end of the game. With 3:43 to go in the game, Philly pulled Mason, opting for a man advantage. This new style of play has been introduced by a former goaltender, Colorado Avalanche coach, Patrick Roy. After all, it makes sense. Down by two goals, why not go empty net with time on the clock? Odds are, you’re going to lose anyway. It’s worth the risk.
From 3:43 on, Talbot faced 6 skaters, stoning every shot he saw. Even worse, Mats Zuccarello took a tripping penalty with 45 seconds remaining in the game, meaning it was 6 on 4 in the skater department. Despite the extra two skaters, Talbot saved every shot that came his way. I really don’t know, by the way he’s played this season, if Henrik Lundqvist would’ve came up as huge as Talbot did last night.
In this young season, this was arguably the biggest game the Rangers played all year. There will be bigger games down the line obviously, but the Rangers really needed the two points. This wasn’t a season-saving win, but it was important that the Rangers won and didn’t slide any further. Hank has lost enough games on home ice this season. The Rangers schedule thus far, has been very home heavy, meaning there will be a lot of road games coming up. What spoke volumes to me, was that when the Rangers needed a W, they didn’t go to the Vezina winner with the big contract, they went to second year goalie, “The Goalbuster”, Cam Talbot. Perhaps Ranger coach Alain Vigneault, also believes in the motto, “IN CAM WE TRUST.”
Again, just to be clear, I love Henrik Lundqvist. I just hate his contract. However, AV must see something, that he turned to Talbot over Lundqvist in a huge game, a game that aired in prime time on a national network, against a huge division rival.
If Talbot doesn’t start on Friday against the Buffalo Sabres, I really have to question the Rangers organization. There is no excuse or explanation. Talbot must start on Friday. Ride the hot hand. It’s about time the Rangers see what they have with Talbot. Can he snap them out of cold spells?
It might be a moot point, because who knows if the game will be played due to the amount of snowfall the city of Buffalo received on Tuesday night. If it is, 33 better be in between the pipes. If Hank is starting Friday, it will make me, and other Ranger fans, wonder if Hank demanded to start. Just like in any sport, ride the hot hand. You would have to be on the sun to be any hotter than Cam Talbot was last night.
It will be interesting to monitor Lundqvist and Talbot’s relationship as the season goes along. Will Lundqvist feel “shown up?” Will Talbot secretly want more playing time? Will AV be forced to choose a guy who is making $8 million less to play goal? The easy answer is to let Talbot play it out. If he’s a flash in the pan, like “Linsanity”, that will be discovered out quickly. If he’s the real deal, then the Rangers will have a tough decision to make.
I would also like to give myself a huge pat on the back for predicting that “TAL-BOT” chants would break out at MSG on Wednesday night! Thank you Cam! Thank you Ranger fans! See ya Friday in Buffalo.
|Should he be a MSG villain?
This may be the most personal and egocentric blog I’ve written thus far on DOINOW.com. I’ve used the word “I” about a hundred times already. I do apologize. (There I go again with the letter “I”, oh wait I just did it again. Oh shit, another “I” too!) I promise not to do this again, but I feel if you know where you’re reading your words from, you get a better perspective.
I’m lucky to have good friends. One of my friends is a Rangers season ticket holder and gives me his great seats often. Unfortunately, I’ve been priced out as a Ranger season ticket holder. I don’t enjoy eating sushi, texting and wearing a suit during the game. I don’t have an extra $10,000 laying around. I’m glad I’m able to go to so many games that I do, through my one friend, who gives me his tickets at face value at $50. If it wasn’t for JEFFREY, I’d be lucky to attend 10 games a year. It’s times like this that I wish I was an Islanders or Devils fan, because then I could afford season tickets. Then I wake up and realize that I’m proud to be a fucking New York Ranger fan!
This past Monday night, I attended the disgusting and brutal Tampa Bag Lightning vs New York Rangers game. Fans booed when Callahan had the puck. During commercial break, a graphic flashed, thanking the three former New York Rangers on the current TBL squad. Hands were clapping and mouths were hollering when Anton Stralman and Brian Boyle (go figure) pictures were shown on the big screen. However, former captain, Ryan Callahan, was nearly booed out the building. I only ask why?
I get it. Callahan wanted money. He left for it. However, the Rangers made the best trade of the season, dealing him for Hall of Famer Martin St. Louis. MSL has been huge for the Rangers and in my opinion, the best player on the club right now. The Rangers made a Stanley Cup run with MSL, that I don’t know if they make with Callahan. Let it go Ranger fans, we won on that trade.
Ryan Callahan is no Chris Drury. On behalf of myself and other Ranger fans, thank you Ryan Callahan. While your 24 shouldn’t be retired, nor will you ever be remembered as a “great” Ranger, your service was commendable and appreciated. There is no reason to boo you. Plus, you got us Marty St Louis!
|One shoots goals, the other shoots his number to porn stars
Speaking of great trades, if it wasn’t for the Callahan for MSL swap, the greatest trade the Rangers have made in recent years is defenseman Michael Del Zaster Del Zotto for Nashville Predator defenseman Kevin Klein.
“Optimus Klein”, as he’s affectionately called by Rangers fan, is currently leading Rangers defensemen in goals this season. He even has more goals than most of the Rangers forwards this years. Klein has played solidly with the puck, has made great defensive plays and has been a scoring threat.
On the other side of the coin, MDZ left Nashville, signed with Philly and his biggest accomplishment since, is being called out by porn star Lisa Ann on twitter for stalking her. Check out the archives for my column on the MDZ/Lisa Ann fiasco.
Thank you Nashville for Kevin Klein. A solid hand, a great contract for the Rangers and a guy who you always feel safe with on the ice. Can’t say the same about MDZ. I guess at least MDZ is scoring a ton of Eskimo Brothers with all the porn stars he’s paying to hang out with.
|Should this logo be back in the NHL?
I was having a conversation with another diehard Rangers fan, my friend Brian from Long Island. In it, he made several great points, which is a true testament to Miller Lite. We both drank a ton of it, and we had a lucid and eye-opening talk.
He made the point how the league has been all business, at the expense of real fans and of the sport. Imagine if they really start putting advertisements on those sacred jerseys?
A recent documentary was released and it talks about the business end of hockey. This documentary discusses how Patrick Roy got traded and how the Quebec Nordiques, a Canadian team, could get a Hall of Fame goalie, to go to Colorado, their soon-to-be United States franchise. The documentary really drove the point home of how the corporate guys in the NHL sold the game out.
When you really look at it, the NHL has changed a lot in 20 years. There are franchises ripped out of hockey towns/states/provinces, like Quebec and Winnipeg, and thrust into places that can’t support a hockey team, like Miami, Arizona and Atlanta. Hockey has righted one wrong, taking a team out of Atlanta and putting it back in Winnipeg. However, another wrong needs to be righted – Quebec needs a franchise.
This will be an in-depth blog for another day, but after my recent Montreal trip, watching Anthony Duclair Quebec Remparts highlights and talking to hockey fans, it might be time for Quebec to get a team back. They have more than enough to support another franchise in the province.
The Florida Panthers franchise, while well-represented by fans when they are doing good, like any other team in Miami, has been a disgrace for years. In one recent game, they only sold 5000 seats. It might be time to move the team to a place that can support them, like Quebec. More on this topic in a future blog.
|If you don’t know, now you know, knickaaa…
While on the topic of pathetic franchises, I’d be remiss not to mention the Knicks. I don’t care how diehard you are, can we all just admit the best future for this team is for the Knicks to tank this season? The league embraces tanking. Until there is a rule that the four worst teams in the league aren’t guaranteed a top lottery pick, NBA teams will continue to tank. Franchises are just following the laws of the land.
So throw your Knickstape away, I’m rooting for #KNICKSRAPED all season. The team needs a stud rookie out of college. With tons of money coming off the books, (I’m looking at you Amare Stoudemire), the Knicks will not only have a lottery pick this upcoming draft, but will be players in the free agency market. Of course, there is that question if that selfish play of Carmelo Anthony will ever win a championship, but that’s been a topic I’ve already discussed to death.
So forget your “GO, NY! GO NY, GO!” mantras. It’s “TANK NY, TANK NY, TANK!” for me this year. In a league that promotes superstars winning, and not team play (Which is why people call the Spurs boring), the Knicks best chance at a championship is in the future and not this season. I might be in the minority on this one, but I’d even trade Melo for picks and get his contract off the books too. This nucleus has no chance, so blow it up, while teams are still interested in Melo.
|If you are a sports fan and not watching this, what the fuck are you waiting for?|
“The League” which originally premiered on FX, and is now on FXX starting this season, just wrapped up their sixth year. If you’re a sports fan and not watching this show, you’re missing out on one of the best shows on TV.
Oh and while on the talk of the NFL, playing in the NFL is a privilege, not a right. Goodell, show some balls. Any one of these scumbags who hits women or kids should be thrown out of the league for life. There should be no tolerance for any of these people, no matter how great they are on the field.
|Mike Morgan Jr., someone I had the pleasure of doing business with|
In closing, a serious topic. Some of you reading may not know this, but for nearly 10 years, I was involved in independent professional wrestling. During the majority of the time, I either covered or did business with ACE Pro Wrestling, an independent wrestling company based out of Union City, NJ.
During my time in indy wrestling, I really enjoyed working with ACE Pro Wrestling, especially with owner Mike Viruet, who goes by the wrestling moniker of Mike Morgan. Due to my life decision of leaving pro wrestling, I haven’t seen Mike in the last two years. However, I still hear and read things, and nothing has changed, Mike Morgan is one of the nicest and passionate family man you’ll ever meet.
Mike Morgan lives for his family more than he does for the wrestling business. While many people will thank Mike for breaking and nurturing them through the world of pro wrestling, Mike also has raised and always been there for his kids. You wouldn’t go to an ACE Pro Wrestling show, back in the days at 725 Sips Street, without seeing Mike’s family at the show as well.
During the latter stages of my wrestling career, I ran WSU wrestling. I needed people to help me produce DVDs. I hired William Colon (Will Wyeth) to help, who in turn, had Mike’s son, Mike Viruet Jr. (Mike Morgan Jr.) help out. Mike Morgan Jr. filmed about three years of shows for me. We had many fun and great talks in his father’s office in that great building on Sips street.
The Morgan family were always great people to me and I probably relied on our friendship too much, from drinking too much at shows to being a wiseass, but no matter what, Mike Morgan and his family were always there when I needed them. It was a bond I lost when I left wrestling. However, I will always consider Mike Morgan and his family friends to me and would do anything if Mike Morgan called me up.
Then I read this:
This story has gone national. If the link doesn’t work for you, the short of it is that some crazy asshole, driving a red Nissan Rogue, hit and ran two of Mike’s children, Mike Jr., 20 years old, and Adrian, 11 years old. Thankfully, both kids will survive, but not without a price. Mike Jr. had a leg amputated. Adrian may have severe brain damage.
These are great people. They do not deserve this. No one does. I wouldn’t ask for money if it wasn’t for a legit concern.
To donate to the family during this time, you can Paypal money directly to:
You can also donate to a GOFUNDME account at:
Two innocent lives and a family were affected by a coward’s actions. All sports and silly shit talking aside, if you can help these people out, please do. Even if it’s only a couple of bucks, anything will do. I have already donated and I urge anyone, even if it’s only a dollar, to give to a loving family during their time of need. Let’s show the Morgan’s/Viruet’s that there are still good people in this world. The current GOFUNDME is already up to $11,000. I hope that figure has an extra zero on it soon.
Get home soon Mike and Adrian. For myself, and countless others, we are all pulling for you Mike Morgan, and for your family.
@NYCTHEMIC on the twitter