Monday, March 19, 2012


Like the old joke goes, I went to the fights and a hockey game broke out. That is exactly what happened at the Garden. Within three seconds of the puck being dropped for the beginning of the game, three fights simultaneously broke out. There is some bad blood between these two teams and some of it was spilled on the Garden ice during these three fights. The Garden crew had to scrape the ice to get the blood off of it before they could resume the game.

On Sunday, the Devils Head Coach, Peter DeBoer, told reporters that he thinks, "there is a genuine dislike" between the Rangers and the Devils. On Monday night, DeBoer started his goon line for the opening face-off. Tortorella started to scream at DeBoer about this move. Tortorella decided that instead of screaming he would goon it up too. He moved a defenseman, Stu Bickel to take the face-off and his wingers were Prust and Rupp. The puck was dropped and then the gloves. The Rangers got the better of that battle and set the tone for the rest of the game.

Not sure what DeBoer was thinking. The Rangers love to drop the gloves. The Rangers lead the league in fighting minutes. Did he really think that he was going to come into the Garden and try to intimidate the Rangers? These are not the Rangers of old, these Rangers are an aggressive bunch and they can play hockey. DeBoer basically put the Rangers back on track.

The Rangers won the game securing a play-off berth and put two more points between them and the Penguins for the top spot in the Eastern Conference with 10 games left. The Rangers also snapped a two game losing streak.

Right now the line of Callahan, Dubinsky and Stepan have been playing really well for the Rangers. Dubinsky opened the game with goal and Stepan closed out the game with a goal. Another player that is having a great stretch run is Carl Hagelin. Last night his speed and tenacious play was giving the Devils fits.

The Rangers and the Devils always play these nail biters. The Rangers go up 3-1 but the Devils score two  goals in the second period to make the game close. The Devils second goal was soft short side goal that was uncharacteristic of Lundquist.  With the score 3-2 in the third period, Stepan redirected a Callahan shot into the net to make it 4-2, and that is how it stood.

The Rangers need to get hot right about now. They have 10 games until the play-offs and this is a great way to start.

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