NEW YORK RANGERS: "Great Shot Kid! But This Is No Time To Get Cocky!" - quote, Han Solo.
Note to Artem Anisimov - Don't do that again!
Mimicking the firing of a rifle with your stick is "bush", and I don't blame Tampa Bay for getting ticked off. Mark Messier once threatened to beat up Tie Domi himself for riding his stick like a witch's broom after scoring a rare goal. So I'm not apt for one of our young players getting cocky now. And I'm sure that's not the way Coach Torts is teaching his guys. Even though Coach had Artem's back after the game, I'm sure behind closed doors Artem received a different form of support from Torts.
The second period melee that ensued threw everything off for a while. That's not why we lost to the Tampa Bolts Thursday. But Artem's actions jump out a little more to me than defensive lapses and losing in a shoot-out does. As a coach, those things are correctable. But lapses in judgement and comportment are something I'm in favor of pouncing on...Johnny-on-the-spot. I believe in keeping a player's frame of mind correct. So it wouldn't surprise me in the slightest if Artem finds himself lacking his usual amount of ice-time tonight. Mind you, I'm speaking from a hockey state of mind, because what jives in other sports doesn't jive on the ice. This is what makes hockey such a great sport. To a large degree, it polices itself.
If Coach takes it easier on the Kid than I suspect, let it show for the record Coach Torts has a heart. Maybe not for Larry Brooks or Sean Avery. But it should prove to some of Coach's detractors that there are some soft spots in his tough love approach and that he recognizes the fine lines when developing young players but at the same time, teaching them and demanding accountability.
The game itself was our second loss in a row. That concerns me not. Should we lose to Buffalo on the heals of Toronto and Tampa Bay losses however, then I'll be looking for reasons why. For I am expecting a much smarter game tonight in Buffalo against the Sabres, who always gives us fits. The only clear advantage the Rangers are considered to have over Buffalo is on defense. Otherwise the Rangers and Sabres are two pretty evenly matched teams in very similar situations within their respective divisions. The Rangers are in third place of the soon to be extinct
We lost to; surprising at least to me; the South's first place Panthers team in a dismally flat performance on our part in Florida. So playing them at home Sunday evening, I'm also expecting similarly different results. If we are going to let consecutive wins over Washington, Philadelphia, and Pittsburgh speak to us, then it's justified to start having firm expectations from this team at this point of their development.
"You can act like a Man!" - quote, Vito Corleone.
"The Battle For New York State"
NEW YORK RANGERS
The Queen City off Lake Erie
Western New York State