Archive for the Rangers Category

#9: New York Rangers vs. New York Islanders

Posted in Islanders, Rangers, Top 10 New York Sports Rivalries on April 26, 2012 by EAST SIDE RYNO

Dennis Potvin’s hit on Ulf Nilsson upgraded this Rivalry from a Battle to a War

Most people in my generation remember the intense Devils / Rangers rivalry in the mid to late 1990’s. When the Rangers and Devils faced off in the 1994 Eastern Conference Finals, it went down as one of the greatest series in NHL history. The Blue Shirts went on the defeat the Devils in seven games ending with Rangers’ forward Stephane Matteau scoring in overtime to win the series. But in the following season, the Devils would bounce back and win a Cup of their own.

The Devils/Rangers rivalry was one of the greatest rivalries in hockey, but it doesn’t even compare to the historic Rangers/Islanders rivalry dating back to 1975. Even though the Islanders franchise has had the reputation as one of the worst teams in the NHL since 1996, this New York hockey rivalry remains strong to this day. The Islanders franchise was established in 1972, but they were the laughing stock of the NHL in their first three seasons. In 1975, they made the playoffs for the first time and faced the heavily favored Rangers in the first round. The series would go to a third and decisive game at the Garden and overtime, Isles’ forward J.P Parise (son of Devils star Zach Parise) would score the series-clinching goal to oust the Rangers. The Islanders advanced to the Eastern Conference Finals, but eventually would lose to the Flyers. Nonetheless, the “Battle of New York” officially ignited.

The two teams would meet again in the playoffs in 1979, this time the Islanders being the heavy favorites. But the Blue Shirts stunned the Isles by eliminating them in six games. In the 1980’s, the Islanders would gain their vengeance on the Rangers by simply dominating the rivalry. The Isles would go on to play the Rangers in the playoffs every year from 1981-1984 and win every series. During this time, the Islanders won four straight Stanley Cups (one more than the Rangers’ three at the time). In the 90’s the Rangers finally had bragging rights by defeating the Islanders in 1990 and 1994, and of course winning the Cup in ’94 as well.

Ken Morrow’s OT Goal vs. the Rangers in the 1984 playoffs was ranked the most famous goal in New York Hockey History

The one player in the center of this heated rivalry from 1975-1994 was the Islanders’ Hall of Fame defenseman Dennis Potvin. In 1979, Potvin put a hard hit on Rangers’ center Ulf Nilsson, which Rangers fans claim was one of the dirtiest hits in hockey (apparently it was a clean hit). After the hit, Nilsson was never the same player again. The Battle of New York was also home to some of the grittiest fights in hockey history. Who can forget the classic fights between Clark Gillies and Ed Hospodar?

Today the Battle of New York  is still in full bloom as the Garden continues to chant “Potvin Sucks” during any games of the season. With the Islanders improving, let’s look forward to this rivalry to gain even more heat in the next few years.

Jersey Sports Fan – MSG vs. Time Warner Cable

Posted in Jets, Rangers, Shout Out of the Week on January 18, 2012 by EAST SIDE RYNO

Thanks to my man Dave Mueller for sending the clip

New York Rangers

Posted in Rangers on January 10, 2012 by Matthew Werblin

After a busy end of the semester it is time to focus on the Rangers.  They have been on a roll.  They took care of business in the winter classic and have found themselves holding the best record in the league.  Every line has been delivering and the team chemistry is perfect.  If you haven’t caught an episode of 24/7 i highly recommend it.  You can see that the players buy into Torts system and fight for each other.

Tonight: They are playing the Phoenix Coyotes.  The last time these two teams met the Rangers found the net with .01 on the clock.  In their last ten games the rangers are 9-1.  Brandon Dubinsky has been picking up steam and his play and work is starting to work off.  Also, the emergence of Carl Hagelin has had a tremendous impact on the team.  His speed is dangerous and opens the ice for the team.  Gaborik has been lights out and is having possibly his best season as a New York Ranger.

HBO Does it Again with “24/7 Rangers-Flyers: Road to the Winter Classic”

Posted in Rangers, Shout Out of the Week on December 20, 2011 by EAST SIDE RYNO

I know it premiered last Wednesday, but today I finally had the opportunity to watch this year’s first episode of HBO’s 24/7: Road to the Winter Classic. Once again, HBO has created another masterpiece. Last year’s Penguins-Capitals 24/7 was one of the best shows on television, so I had huge expectations for this year’s show. Even though I hate both of these teams, it’s great to watch how the two franchises go about their daily operations. Last year we saw how Dan Blyelsma and Bruce Boudreau communicated with their players and coaching staffs. Now we get to see how John Tortorella and Peter Laviolette work with theirs. I was surprised with the calmness of Rangers’ coach John Tortorella. I have a completely different respect for him knowing he’s not as much of a loose cannon. I had an image of Torts similar to Bruce Boudreau from last year – just dropping f-bombs everywhere. But Torts is more collected and the Rangers seem to respond well to him. Peter Laviolette seems to be more soft-spoken, but intense coach. I loved Laviolette when he was head coach of the Islanders from 2001-2003. He rejuvenated the Isles after the team suffered for eight straight years. So I’ll always have respect for the guy. Luckily for us, we have three more one-hour episodes of this phenomenal show. More to come on 24/7: Rangers/Flyers in the weeks ahead…

Here was the final scene of last year’s 24/7 – Penguins/Capitals:

Ranges vs Hurricanes

Posted in Rangers on December 1, 2011 by Matthew Werblin


When: Tonight 7 PM 

Where: RBC Center

Red Hot: The Rangers this season have exceed expectations throughout the National Hockey League.  They have the best home record and are in 4th place with 3 less games played then most other teams.  The rangers have been able to find chemistry early.  This is the best start the rangers have gotten off to in recent years.  They have numerous lines playing well and are getting solid goaltending from both  and Lundqvist.  With a quarter of the season done, as a fan i could not ask more.  They have dominated when playing at the garden and they are finding their game on the road.  By becoming dominate at the Garden the Rangers instill fear to visiting opponents the moment the puck is dropped.  This is the first season the rangers have been able to bring that element.

Emergence of Hagelin: When the Rangers called up carl hagelin who knew that he would provide instant offense.  He might be one of the fastest players in the game and is playing with confidence.  Us as fans are spoiled right now because it seems everyone youngster the Rangers call up is ready to play and looks as if the sky is the limit.

Streaking: This ranger team is very streaky.  We saw them go on a 8 game win streak followed by a 2 game losing streak.  As of now they are on another 3 game winning streak and just beat the best team in the nhl in the penguins.  Even without our best defender the Rangers are playing well defensively.  This team has to grow together for a championship but the wheels are in motion.

Prediction: After coming a big win against the crosbies.  The rangers must not take anything for granted.  The season is still young and wins are crucial .  Biron has played in a while so he might be rusty but the offense has to step up and dominate.  The powerplay has been strong and it has to continue tonight.  Gaborik played his best game of the season against the penguins and maybe this will be the start of something special for him.

Jersey Sports Fan – Thanksgiving Break

Posted in Jets, Mets, Rangers on November 30, 2011 by EAST SIDE RYNO

Rangers vs Hurricanes

Posted in Rangers on November 11, 2011 by Matthew Werblin


When: 7 pm on MSG

Where: Madison Square Garden

Thoughts: Tonight the Rangers will be battling the Carolina Hurricanes.  This is the first time the Rangers are facing the Hurricanes since Eric Staal concussed his brother and New York Ranger Marc Staal.  Marc has not played this season and has been nursing post concussion syndrome for the last few months.  A side note to this game is that since the injury Eric leads the NHL in a minus rating this season.  Look for the Rangers to lay a few hits on Eric.  This game has the chance to be very physical.  The rangers denied the Hurricanes a playoff berth last year.

The GAS line: Since the emergence of Anisomov-Stepan-Gaborik have collaborated on line one the Rangers offense has exploded.  All three players have collected points in the teams last few games and look to continue that tonight.  Anisomov has 6 assists in the last three games played.

Gameplan: The rangers are coming into form.  They have won five straight and are looking to make it six tonight.  The only problem is the Rangers have many off days between games right now.  The team has to make sure to play the way that brings them the most success.  Forecheck and strong defense.  These two aspects of the Rangers style opens up the offense for them later in the game.  With a win tonight the Rangers can join Pittsburgh on top of the Atlantic division.  Lundqvist is getting the start and he desperatly has to improve on his 4-3-3 record.  He has been playing well but the consistency needs to come before december starts.  The biggest concern I have is that in the last game the Rangers had a few days off and started playing Ottawa very flat.  They did not hit their stride until the second period.  The rangers only had 4 shots in the game until halfway through the second.  This can not become a regular routine or the Rangers will start losing.  Luckily, the Rangers are playing at Home tonight and the Garden faithful this year has sparked this teams play.

Prediction: This is going to be a close one.  As much as i would like the Rangers to win I think they’ll end up losing this one 3-2 .  If Gaborik has a strong game and Lundqvist is solid in net the Rangers can pull out the win.

Rangers vs. Canadiens Recap

Posted in Rangers on November 5, 2011 by Matthew Werblin

Final Score: MTL 3 vs. NYR 5

Recap: The Garden was electrifying tonight!  The crowd helped the Rangers off to a great start.  Once again we saw the defense only allow 3 shots.  This propelled the Rangers to get three goals from christensen, Del Zotto, and Dan Girardi.  It is nice to see the Rangers are starting strong when playing at home.  Once again it was a tale of two games in the 2nd.  The Canadiens scored twice and the Rangers once again looked sloppy.  Avery was not a factor at since torts started him off on the 4th line.  Brad Richards netted the fourth goal for the Rangers.  The third was not that much better than the 2nd.  Sloppy play and some luck allowed for the Rangers to held a lead until the last final minutes of the game.  MTL came within 1 but Ryan Callahan netted an empty netter.

Thoughts: by far this was the most exciting game to watch this season.  In the opening minutes there was a major brawl leading to 2 game misconducts.  Im glad to see that the Rangers were able to score another Powerplay goal but they did not even look good on other chances.

During this homestretch the Rangers have been able to beat teams on hot streaks.  If this trend continues the Rangers will be a force to reckon with. Yet there is still room for doubt.  The Rangers have to be more consistent in their games.  They start strong but cannot keep that level of play for a full sixty minutes.  If they dont this team will be a .500 team at best.  The chemistry is building from game to game but the Rangers are not consitent for a whole sicty minutes.  Right now this team does not have a killer instinct yet.  They hesitate when leading and along with that lose momentum.

The Rangers will have a quick turn around as they play Winnipeg tomorrow at 7 pm.  It is there first back to back of the season.  They are being tested and it should be able to tell us more about this team.

Rangers vs. Canadiens

Posted in Rangers on November 5, 2011 by Matthew Werblin


When: 7 PM on MSG

Canadiens- 5-5-2 VS. Rangers 5-3-3

Thoughts: This is the second to last game during this current homestretch for the New York Rangers.  In recent years the Rangers have had problems winning at home.  So far during this stretch at home the Rangers are 2-2.  They currently are on a two game win streak and look to continue to build on that tonight.  In recent days the Rangers have been filled with bad news.  Wojtek Wolski was placed on IR as we as Mike Rupp.  The rangers are still out without the best defenseman in Marc Staal.  The Rangers have learned in past years how important it is to get early season wins at home.  For the last two seasons there playoff faith has been decided during the final week.  This team is going to influence their style of play.  The defense has been very strong the last two games even with the  absence of Staal.  Lundqvist played extremely well on Wednesday and I wouldn’t be surprised if he does not have his best game of the season tonight.    Gaborik has been skating as he used to in Minnesota and his play is crucial tonight.

X-Factor: Tonights x-factor is Sean Avery who is making is Rangers season debut.  The crowd has been demanding him and now will get to see him.  With the injury to Wolski the Rangers need someone to step up.  This could not have worked out any better for Sean.  If he uses his swagger and stays smart his presence will defiantly be felt. The biggest concern is the fact that he is prone to taking bad penalties.  Besides Callahan not a single person on this team brings emotion to the game as Avery does.  He loves New York and wears the sweater with pride.  If Avery performs well the Rangers can survive with all of these injuries.

A side not to this drama is what happens if Avery does perform.  John Tortorella said that there are better players on this team than Sean.  Would we see him bite his tongue for once and admit he was wrong or find another way to hold his grudge on Avery.  It is clear that these two do not get along but their relationship can’t affect the team on the whole.  Someone has to be the bigger man and deal with it.  The last thing this team has to deal with is drama between a coach and player over personal vendettas.

Rangers Vs. Ducks Recap

Posted in Rangers on November 3, 2011 by Matthew Werblin

Final Score: NYR 2 ANA I 

Recap: The Rangers brought their game tonight in the 1st period.  They came out strong and dominated Woywitka scored his first goal as a New York Ranger.  Not to mention the defense held Anaheim to only two shots in the whole period.  The second period was more evenly matched.  The Ducks were able to get a goal from the star Bobby Ryan his fifth of the season.  The shots were also move evenly matched with the Rangers getting 9 while Anaheim had 10.  This was not the case in the third.  The ducks outshot the Rangers 15 to 4 and dominated the whole period.  Lundqvist was sharp with 27 saves and looked like his old self out there.  His counterpart Jonas Hiller kept the Ducks in the game.  He made save after save in the 1st before the Rangers could run away with it.

Thoughts: This one was a thriller from beginning to end.  Hats off to Jonas Hiller who was able to stifle the Rangers opportunities.  Without him the Rangers defiantly would have scored multiple goals in the 1st.  What the Rangers can build from this is how well they play when they stick to their game plan.  If they are able to get the consistency they had in the 1st the sky is the limit for this team.  They came out strong and fast and knew exactly what they needed to do.  The defense allowed for Henrik to get comfortable and he ended up having a few big saves.  This could be the beginning of a hot streak for him.  Gaborik has been skating well and its a matter of time before the puck starts going into the net.  Overall, the Rangers were able to get the two points and have a day off before they play Montreal on Saturday night.

Return of Avery:  It’s almost certain now that Avery will play saturday night due to the injury to Wotjek Wolski.  The fans prayers are answered.  It will be interesting to see what Avery can add to this team.