Monday, November 7, 2011

Wolski Out Four Weeks

The New York Rangers announced today that left wing, Wojtek Wolski will be out for four weeks with a sports hernia.  He will undergo surgery tomorrow in Philadelphia.

According to the press release, when Wolski returns, he will be playing his 400th NHL game. 

Wolski has 2 assists this season in six appearances and is 9 goals away from his 100th career NHL goal.

Video: Messier Talks NYC Marathon

Memo To Rangers Fans: Time To Get Girardi Apparel At MSG

The New York Rangers are a team that has certain lynchpins that hold the whole thing together.  When you think of those players Lundqvist, Callahan, Staal are the first three that come to mind for me.  Obviously the work of Gaborik, Richards and Dubinsky are keys to success of the team along with continuing emergence of Ryan McDonagh and Michael Sauer defensively.  The guy that is as big to the team as anyone is Dan Girardi.

If Ryan Callahan is the epitome of what the Rangers want to be as an identity, then Dan Girardi is right there with him.  No player in the league blocks more shots than Girardi who every game is seemingly limping at least twice from a blocked shot but continues to return to the ice on his next shift.  He has done this as a top pair defender on the Rangers for the past three seasons without the proper recognition, at least outside of the locker room.  He is the unquestioned leader of the defense corps that is surviving the loss of All-Star Marc Staal for an indefinite amount of time.  In Staal's absence this year, Girardi has taken his game to another level leading the league in ice time (27:58), while chipping in seven points (2G, 5A) and doing his normal thing blocking shots (34) and hitting the opposition (27).

Yet with all that Girardi has done and is doing this season there is no recognition of him inside Madison Square Garden in terms of merchandise in the team store.  It might seem silly to worry about something like that, but with all that Girardi has done for this team you would think that the stands could stand to have few less Lundqvist, Callahan or Dubinsky shirts/jersey's and a few more Girardi.  I do not begrudge anyone of their favorite player, but it is time we start giving Girardi some love commensurate with the work he puts in for us.

From what I have been told, the reason that no Girardi merchandise is available in the stores at MSG is because it is not a requested item by the fans.  Time for us to change that fact.  Making that happen is very simple.  Next time you are at MSG for a Rangers game take a few minutes to walk into a store and tell someone working there that you are requesting the Rangers start making Dan Girardi apparel.  If you want go ahead and ask for some other players as well since McDonagh, Sauer, Anisimov, and the best backup in the league Martin Biron deserve some love as well, but in my opinion at least Girardi not having one at this point is simply wrong.

I created a facebook page just so you can share it with friends and fellow Rangers fans to spread the word in order to get Girardi a little piece of recognition that he deserves showing we respect all he does on the ice.

Photo: "Closest Thing" to Flyers Winter Classic Jersey

Posted by Greg Wyshynski at PuckDaddy a new leak has been released of the Flyers Winter Classic Jersey.
While it is NOT the actual jersey, insiders have said it is the closest thing to the real jersey that they have seen.

Rangers' Anisimov Continues To Grow Before Our Eyes

Artem Anisimov an excellent sophomore season with the New York Rangers last year watching his production go from 28 points (12G, 16A) to 44 points (18G, 26A).  Anisimov found a home playing with Brandon Dubinsky and Ryan Callahan on the team’s best line last season.  The performance of that trio led to lofty expectations for all three entering the season.  Anisimov showed in training camp/during the preseason that he has put in the work to get stronger and work on the flaws in his game, but the results were not showing early. 

His individual play was good, however the line was struggling to produce anything on the scoreboard.  Callahan and Dubinsky were not playing their typical style of game and that even more than the lack of scoring was what cause coach John Tortorella to start tinkering with the line.  Anisimov was the victim of the line being broken up because Tortorella had seemed averse to putting him with Gaborik on the top line.  Once Anisimov fell out of the top six he ended up being pushed to the fourth line. 

Anisimov continued to work and finally got his first goal of season Monday against San Jose on  a tremendous backhand shot high over the shoulder.   The work and effort Anisimov put in while waiting for his chance to get more ice time while playing higher in the lineup has now paid off.   The most recent groin injury to Wojtek Wolski afforded him that opportunity and Anisimov is playing like he has no intention of going anywhere from his spot alongside Derek Stepan and Marian Gaborik.  In two games the 23-year-old forward has four assists and is showing excellent chemistry with both Stepan and Gaborik.  The four points for Anisimov have him third on the team with eight points thus far (1G, 7A) and as long as he continues to play at the level he has been at the last two those numbers are going to continue to rise.

The constant improvement in all facets of the game that Artem Anisimov continues to make seems to get overlooked by the media and the fans of the New York Rangers.  Last year the talk centered on Dubinsky and Callahan for the work the line did and in the past two games it was about Stepan and Gaborik.  All four of those other players deserve the attention they get, but Anisimov should get some credit for what those lines accomplished as well.  Each year Anisimov adds to his game and the 23-year-old has become a player more than capable of hanging with top line players on both ends of the ice.  Add a quicker release to his added strength, good skating, quality vision/passing and lethal shot off the rush and you have a force to be reckoned with.  The consistency in production on the scoreboard is still coming, but there is nothing about the development of this young Russian forward that should be taken for granted.