I have a feeling that this start to the season, in Europe, then coming back to the Eastern Time Zone, to the West Coast of Canada, then gallivanting over the Canadian countryside, might come to haunt the Rangers at some point. Chances are, they’ll get their act together and they’ll string along a few wins, and I guess the silver lining is that they’ll be visiting Lose-a-peg in another week, so that could be promising.
Yet, I’ve seen some things that really kind of get to me at this point, so early in the season. The taking of stupid-ass penalties being one of those things that are like a day ending in “Y,” they happen WAY too often, especially three games into the season. The Islanders wasted no time in capitalizing on the way-too-many five-on-threes during the game. I have to be honest, that John Tavares…he’s a rock star. And it’s not very lightly that I take giving an IceLander a compliment, so I covet him officially. Ugh.
So what has stood out in this short season is that the Rangers are the Mayor of the Penalty Box when they play…in fact, I hope they keep their check-ins modified because I’d really hate for them to not get their mayor points for being residents there. /sarcasm
This was also one of the first games I watched that John Tortorella really annoyed me. I actually was a fan of him, even gave him a pass (whether rightful or not) because it seemed like they had a shoestring (yes, don’t get me started on “shoestringing” a big market team with a large overheard…I’ll get to Village Idiot Dolan in a minute), so I figured maybe Brad Richards would be the rug that tied the room together.
I saw him SMILING when the Rangers were just getting their asses kicked on the power play and even penalty killing. I just think he’s severely out of touch, he knows that Jimmy Wilpon, erm, DOLAN, and Glen Sather holds onto their “guys” for way too long. Meaning, they don’t like admitting to their mistakes. Torts though seems to be losing the team. Really, it’s pathetic, when I know someone like Mike Keenan (back in the day) and Roger Neilson would have had those guys doing pushups for the stupid ass trips to the penalty box, in multiple games this year…and we’re only THREE GAMES IN!!!
Then there was the questionable move of taking Henrik Lundqvist out with almost TWO MINUTES left in the game. Uh, why? I get the empty net situation, it was sort of necessary…but I guess I would rather have our guy manning the net till about a minute left in the game, especially with the way Tavares was all over the zone like white on rice. I mean, was Torts even WATCHING the same game I was??
Then there’s the question of the schedule. I was at Game Four of the first round last year, and MSG was going through some construction then. It was hellish getting around and walking in the concourses there. It was hot as Hell there, and you couldn’t maneuver there as well. I thought it was a combo of it being a high-ticket game, and the construction. I was also sick with a head cold, and it just wasn’t pleasant. So being that the Garden is still under construction, I had to wonder if this several games on the road is to help with the construction.
Now, I get that MSG needed a makeover, I know Dolan gets what Dolan wants…but it’s asinine that a majority of this couldn’t have happened in the offseason of both the Rangers and the Knicks. I think a lot more could be done or at least, do it in small portions. See, when you do a gut renovation, you start small, so that you can inhabit parts of it and have minor inconveniences here and there. Clearly, Jim Dolan has no clue. But what else is old? If the renovation of the Garden is causing the delay of the Rangers season, trust me, it will come back to haunt them. You heard it here first.
In the meantime, I hope the team has their Foursquare account current. After all, with all the traveling, border crossing, and restaurants in the locales, they’ll be earning some serious points till they return to New York.
PS I also thought I would have a chance to go to this game…20/20 hindsight, I’m glad that I didn’t. But I have to admit it was kinda cool to see the bells-and-whistles for the Islanders goals…and then basically 85% of the arena going nuts whenever the Rangers scored. I must go to a game at the Mausoleum one of these days.