The Rangers Game Log

Thursday, March 30, 2006

More Fish Sticks Please

- The Rangers will resume the major league portion of their schedule in Ottawa tonight, after a 5-1 scrimmage win over the combative but not competitive Icelanders at the dismal Coliseum. It doesn’t get any better than this. Ranger fans took over the building with chants of “MVP,” “We Want Fish Sticks,” “DP Sucks,” and the obnoxious “WOO” that follows the home team’s occasional goals there. For those of us who endured the days of “1940,” “Last Place,” and “Double Chili,” we can’t possibly rub it in enough. The Blueshirts won three out of four there, all in completely dominating fashion. Since Kevin Weekes, returning too soon from a groin injury, gave up three goals on the first three shots of the first game, the Rangers outscored them by 20-7. We can only revel in the fact that there are two home games left against the hapless “rivals;” the only negative is that there will be hardly any of their fair weather fans to taunt on those nights.

- Could it be that Colton Orr is a hockey player? Following up his competent performance against the Sabres, Orr played a big role on this night, challenging and decking Eric Godard (again) after the latter left his feet to sandwich Kasparaitis, who had a dynamic return with five hits. Did we miss Kaspar, or what? Orr showed discipline and smarts when refusing to fight John Erskine, and then drew a four minute power play after delivering a clean hit. He nailed Miroslav Satan with another clean hit in the first, and was on the ice for Blair Betts' goal, one of his ten shifts.

- Renney rolled out the genuine HMO line for ten minutes of action, and they provided their usual energy. Can we have that regularly please?

- Jagr told John Giannone after the game that he was trying out new skate blades, and that he was a little “taller” for the game. He said that made for good playmaking, as evidenced by his four primary assists, but that he didn’t have a good shot. Could have fooled me; his shot that deflected off of Straka was his patented cut to the middle wrister that certainly would have gone in anyway.

- Does anyone feel sorry for Howie Rose?

- Interesting to see if Tyutin gets back into the lineup tonight. The defense performed nearly flawlessly; Strudwick had a strong game, though this game may not be a good judge. Lundqvist should be fresh for the Sens after practically getting the night off; he made just 18 saves but fanned on Yashin’s goal. That’s 25 goals for the big waste, who makes about as much as Jagr. Think about that. Islander fans must have been thrilled to hear Stan Fischler speculate that Milbury would be asked to stay because of the young players performing so well of late.

- As impressive as Jagr’s accomplishments are this year, keep in mind that Jean Ratelle missed 17 games at the end of his 109 point 1971-72 season when he suffered a broken ankle after being hit with a slapshot off the stick of teammate Dale Rolfe in a 4-1 win over the California Golden Seals. I was there, and will never forget the groan from the crowd as Ratelle went down (one of many such groans heard throughout the years). Bobby Rousseau scored two goals that night as Gilles Villemure got the win in one of the most costly wins in Ranger history.


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