Thursday, November 4, 2010

Rangers at Flyers Recap: Rangers Current and Former Doom Blueshirts

The Rangers came in looking to avenge last season’s final game while building on the most recent two game winning streak.  The outcome obviously would not be what the Rangers or their fans wanted on either front as they failed to avenge any of last year’s issues with the Flyers, didn’t get the two points and got pushed around again.  The up and down cycle continued the question now becomes whether the Rangers will snap out of it faster then they have previously and will keep this as a one game downer.  The first period showed this was not going to be their night as the effort really wasn’t there, they only managed to get 2 shots on goal, little puck possession while missing the net high multiple times.

The Rangers got their game going to start the 2nd after the late penalty to Jeff Carter gave them a power play to start the period.  The Rangers dominated possession and Dubinsky would have had a goal on an empty net but Kimmo Timmonen made a great play to stop Dubinsky.  As the power play continued Dubinsky found Del Zotto who hit the net, after missing multiple times earlier, leading to a rebound to an untouched Dubinsky hitting the open net for a 1-0 Rangers lead at 1:53 of the 2nd.  If Dubi had hesitated to shoot the puck Bobrovsky probably gets back into position and makes the save, but the quick shot cashed in the opportunity.

About a minute and a half after the goal Girardi took a holding penalty against Wellwood.  On the powerplay with Girardi in the box it was Staal and Sauer on D, Staal slid to block the pass across and the play looked bottled up until Girouix threw a backhand no look pass across the crease to a wide open Mike Richards who buried it high glove at 5:12 for a 1-1 tie.  After that MDZ made a too common play of coming around the back of the net in his own zone trying to do too much with the puck and turning it over leading to a Blair Betts rebound goal after Henrik stopped the original shot.  The goal made it 2-1 Flyers at 9:32 of the second. 

For some inexplicable reason Torts sends Boogaard out after the goal and on the ensuing shift he takes a penalty.  In Boogaard’s defense the call was awful as all he did was tap Shelley and Shelley got nothing for socking Boogaard in the back of the head later in the same shift.  The Rangers would kill that penalty off, but later in the period Zherdev would get one of those cheap goals that Henrik gives up when he fired a prayer at Hank’s pads from the side wall and had it bounce up Henrik and over the shoulder at 15:20 for a 3-1 Flyers lead.

The second period overall saw the Rangers hurt themselves taking penalties whether legit or not doesn’t truly matter and the Flyers get away with taking liberties because they were the aggressors.  The Rangers came out strong thanks in large part to the power play but then went nearly 11 minutes without a shot and had a 3-1 deficit going into the 3rd.

Early in the 3rd Carcillo with another dirty hit as he launched himself at the head of Ruslan Fedetenko who luckily wasn’t seriously injured but no call was made.  I expect if the new rules are to mean anything that Carcillo will get a suspension and it should be a decent sized one with his history.  A minute after that non call Prust got a roughing call for punching Zherdev by the benches and on the power play Pronger would use a Jeff Carter screen to make it 4-1 at 3:07.  Prust once again was the Ranger who stepped up for his teammates as he fought Carcillo and clearly beat him and the rest of the game didn’t show much as the Flyers won 4-1.

Rangers get back at in NJ tomorrow.
  • Best forwards on the night were probably Christensen and Grachev.
  • Dubinsky-Anisimov-Callahan line had their moments but may have played their least impactful game of the year 
  • Callahan didn’t seem the same after going into the boards in the first period
    •  MDZ’s awful turnovers need to stop. Defensive mistakes and growing pains will happen, but repeating the same mistakes has to be punished and it was for a few minutes in the 2nd.
    • Henrik has to stop allowing the cheap goals, as it has become far too common for him
    • Tortorella’s using of Boogaard was awful tonight as he sent him out after goals and after Prust already took care of Carcillo but not after Carcillo ran Fedetenko.  Also if Boogaard doesn’t want to actually be an enforcer and stick up for his teammates regardless of who it is against, then he serves no purpose on this club.  This is not boxing training where he only has to fight the heavyweights.
    •  Once again the Rangers played as if they were intimidated and responses to the Flyers going after their guys either didn’t come at all or came way after the fact
    • If this team doesnt learn to stop talking about taking less penalties and actually do it, they wont advance anywhere.
    • Never a good sign when the most enthused player on the ice is Zherdev