Thursday, January 7, 2010

Postgame Reactions - Rangers vs. Thrashers 1/7

Thrasher 2, Rangers 1 (SO)
  • Chad Johnson really deserved better.  He played better than anyone could have imagined--even stopped Ilya Kovalchuk in the shootout--and got no offensive support.  He got the support on defense for sure, but a loss of any kind to this Thrashers team that had lost 9 straight should be considered unacceptable.  Right after I typed this, Ryan Callahan is said pretty much the same exact thing in his interview.
  • Enver Lisin scored the only goal for the Rangers by driving hard to the net and deflecting a beautiful pass from Marc Staal. Chad Johnson got the other assist.
  • Chad Johnson's final line: 31 saves, 1 assist, 1 goal allowed, .969 save percentage.  Chad, welcome to the big club, you'll likely get the nod a few more times before April.
  • Enver Lisin--remember, the guy who scored a second period goal--played less than every other player tonight.  I don't get it.
  • I like Michael Del Zotto as much as the next guy, but choosing him 5th in the shootout?  Did Torts think this was another rookie draft?  A short list of some of the players who could have shot at that point instead: Avery, Anisimov, Lisin, Dubinsky, Drury, Gilroy.  I don't see the logic in having MDZ shoot there, especially needing to score to keep it going.
  • Marc Staal and Michal Rozsival had an outstanding defensive game, combining to keep Kovalchuk at bay (1 SOG, -1) and helping keep Johnson calm.  Staal also did a great job rushing the puck up ice to create the Rangers goal.
  • Ryan Callahan had a great game--even made a save--but he committed a not so great turnover that led to the Thrashers goal. You have to get that one over the red line, even if you ice it and have to take a timeout.
  • Chris Drury was credited with 7 blocked shots tonight.  I think the real number was closer to 10, but his defensive play was outstanding (14-9 on faceoffs didn't hurt either).
  • Erik Christensen made another outstanding play when he used his body to shield the puck from Afinigenov before putting a perfect pass on Gaborik's stick for one of the best Rangers scoring chances of the night.
  • I like the D pairings much better when Staal and Girardi play together and Del Zotto plays with Rozsival.
  • The Rangers are now 2-6 in games that go past 60 minutes.  They also have points in 10 of their last 11 games and 5 straight.
  • 2009 1st round pick Chris Kreider and his BC Eagles play against BU at Fenway tomorrow night.  The game will be broadcast live on NHL Network at 7:30pm.
  • The next Rangers game is at 1pm Saturday in Boston on MSG.


  1. While I agree with you that torts should have picked someone else besides del zotto, he did have hedberg beat and shot just wide. Torts sees things in practice that you never get to see. Drury blocked that shot in ot an looked pretty banged up so he couldn't take a shot anyway. In anycase, it should have never have gone to the shootout with all their opportunities. Johnson will be a starter for another team one day since the rangers are commited to lundqvist.

  2. I agree on Drury, but I still think that putting MDZ in that situation is the wrong call. It was his first career shootout attempt and he needed to score or the Rangers lose. I would have liked to see Dubi, Avery, Lisin, or Gilroy there.

    On Johnson, I don't see him being a starter anywhere...he's more of a longtime backup type to me.

  3. Hidy-Ho Neighbor! Finally figured out which account to sign in here and now you won't be able to shut me up.

    Johnson played well and deserved better but, when Sam and Joe started the show off talking about the Thrashers losing streak I thought UH-OH. Yes, it sucks to not beat them bad but, at the same time at least they didn't cream us to come out of the funk.