Sunday, November 6, 2011

Is the Rodent Right?

Hello NY and everywhere else, I'm Bird and you're at hockeybird.com.

I'm posting during the first period of tonight's game. As happy as I am about the NY Giants win in OT over the pats, I am concerned about our Rangers.

If you read the Rodent, he's concerned as well. I know, we beat Montreal. Hell, we've been wining a few at home lately. But there are patterns that make the Rodent's tail stand up as a warning. In a nutshell (pun intended) he's worried about the power play and the fact that we are consistently out shot. Is he right to be concerned?

I'd say yes. (I hate it when he's right)

I know, I'm the one who usually suggested that a win is a win. Two points in the NHL count the same no matter how they are earned. As in golf, there are no pictures on a score card. Ugly wins count the same. But to piggy back on the Rodent (ewww) there are some disturbing trends that if not corrected will come back to haunt our Blueshirts. Being out shot is one. For a lunch pail group, the idea that they are waiting for the perfect play and adding the additional pass is not consistent with the whole lunch pail concept. Keep in mind, this group heroically block a ton of shots. This affects the shot stats. Additionally, our Rangers are still guilty of missing the net way too often. This also affects the shot totals....in a negative way. I'm suggesting that it could be even worse, statistically speaking.

Now the power play, which has been a topic of discussion for what seems like decades now, is once again something to pay attention to. Scoring on the 5 on 3 last night (something they used to fail at regularly) was a plus. Not scoring on the rest? A Hearty "What the ****" comes to mind. Slats added the two things we looked to need, a proven power play guy and a quarter back. And, he did it acquiring one guy. And yet, I still yell DECLINE when the opposition is whistled for an infraction. Not scoring with the man advantage is deflating in addition to the missed opportunity. It can creep into the minds of the team. Solid point shots are a main stay of any coaches PP plan. I'm still seeing too much looking for that perfect play crap. Shoot it, damnit. And while you're at it.....how about hitting the net?

OK, relax. Take a deep breath. As the big Tuna says, "you are what you're record says you are". meaning, we're OK so far. I'm just hoping that these simple issues are addressed to help take this team to the next level. I think we're close. Injuries aside, this team can achieve this year. A lot is expected and nothing less than a solid run in the playoffs will suffice.

0-0 after one period tonight. Two points up for grabs....and we're gonna need 'em.

----}- Bird
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