Found April 23, 2012 on
The Rangers Tribune:
It's the slogan the New York Rangers have used throughout the Stanley Cup Playoffs. It's on the t-shirts, it's on Twitter, it's plastered on the walls of Madison Square Garden and it's printed on the rally towels.
One word with such a vast meaning. One word that contains an unlimited amount of power. But one word that defines the 2011-12 New York Rangers.
We've said it time and time again, the Rangers defied all odds with what they were able to accomplish this year. They clinched a playoff spot in March, they won the Atlantic Division and they finished as the top seed in the Eastern Conference. A team that was predicted to once again just barely slip into the postseason picture happened to soar to the top and take the entire National Hockey League by surprise. None of that was possible without some sort of "belief".
And we're not only talking about the belief among the players within the locker room, but the belief shared between the team and the fan base. It was the 18,200 True Blue that filled the seats of Madison Square Garden each and every night that made the Rangers one of the better teams on home ice. It was the True Blue that made the trip from New York to Philadelphia to stand outside in the coldest month of Winter that helped power the Rangers to come back from a 0-2 deficit to win the Winter Classic. It was the True Blue that supported the club through the tough times late in the year that motivated the Rangers to yield off the then-dominant Pittsburgh Penguins to preserve the top seed in the East.
Now, down 3-2 to the Ottawa Senators, facing elimination tonight at Scotiabank Place, the Rangers need their True Blue followers more than ever.
It's disappointing to see the number of 'fans' that have already given up. I understand that there's a reality to everything, and let's be honest, this blog is about as real as it will get in terms of team coverage on the Internet. I don't sugarcoat; I was the first to call out the team for their piss-poor effort in Game 5. However, that doesn't mean I have lost my faith in the team that's been such a pleasureful aspect of my life this year. They've rarely let me down this season, so I'll match that effort as a true fan.
Yes, the Rangers are struggling to score, they haven't generated much of a forecheck and their overall effort has been subpar. When else was this a problem? Let's go back to the beginning of the season when the club posted a 3-3-3 record in the first few weeks of the schedule. Things were looking pretty dull for the Blueshirts at the time, and I distinctly remember fans already throwing in the towel and giving up on the team with just nine games played. I wonder what those ‘fans’ had to say for themselves after New York's Conference-clinching win over the Flyers seven months later.
If a Rangers team that had yet to know each other well or begin to develop any sort of chemistry was able to overcome the adversity in October, the now tightly knit, confidence-overflowing squad can certainly do so here in the playoffs in April. For goodness sake, they are the top seeded team in a 1 versus 8 match-up and were the favorites to win this thing going in. And to take it a step further, the Rangers were even picked by some to win the Stanley Cup when all was said and done. There's a reason the Rangers earned such respect this season and trust me, they haven't lost any of it just because they are down a game in this series with the Senators.
Henrik Lundqvist is still the best goaltender in the world, Marian Gaborik and Brad Richards are still two of the deadliest offensive players in the NHL, and the Rangers are still a very difficult team to defeat. Admittedly, the Senators have repeatedly stated that their past two wins have been very difficult to obtain. Again, nothing has changed just because the Rangers are down in this series, and the fact that there is major room for improvement is a good sign.
Therefore, there is no reason for any true fan of this hockey club to be giving up headed into tonight's Game 6. This is a passionate group of hockey players we are fans of and they certainly haven't given up yet, so neither should we.
There are still two games to be played in the series, and we, as fans, should be behind the team for every last second of both of them.
Now that I've gotten that off my chest, I will leave you, for now, with this:
BEST OF MAXIM
When Chris Neil took out Brian Boyle with a questionable hit on Saturday night, he took out the Rangers most effective forward. He took out their leading scorer, top defensive forward, and top penalty killer in this series. He took out the only player that has managed to get under the skin of the Senators. It’s a big blow to the Rangers, and not a player easily replaced. The best...
For once the Rangers were able to make them pay. When I say them, I don’t just mean the Senators. I mean the refs. I mean Shanny. I mean Campbell. I mean anyone and everyone who has failed to do their job this postseason. The Rangers overcame it all for once and will have to do it one more time on Thursday in order to get to the next round.
Anyway, on to the scoring…
In what is no surprise to pretty much anyone, Ryan Callahan was not included as a finalist for the Selke Trophy for the NHL’s top defensive forward. The finalists are St. Louis’ David Backes, Boston’s Patrice Bergeron, and Detroit’s Pavel Datsyuk, who has won the award three of the past four years.
Backes finished the season with a line of 20-34-54 while starting just 46...
During his post practice press conference today John Tortorella reported that Brian Boyle did not make the trip to Ottawa......not a surprise. Never a good idea to put a guy with a concussion on an airplane. Just ask the Mets.Steve Zipay at Newsday has this quote from Ryan Callahan this morning..."We've got to win this game. We don't want this season to end. If we play...
Last night late in the third period Michael Del Zotto caught Chris Neil with his head down behind the net......hope Del Zotto told Neil "that was for Boyle" after destroying him with that devastating hit....normally not a fan of a player getting injured, but I had a big ole smile on my face watching Neil lay there on the ice after being dropped like a sack of potatoes.And...
Being that the New York Rangers were shutout 2-0 tonight by Craig Anderson and the Ottawa Senators in Game 5, that could be the understatement of the season.
The Rangers did a much better job tonight of getting pucks on net and crashing for rebounds but Anderson turned away all 41 shots that were thrown at him for his second career shutout. The Rangers are now just one loss away...
One of my closest friends won’t ever let me forget how I (and two others) banned her from a Hartford Wolfpack playoff game in 2000. It was a deciding Game 5 in the first round, and we told Terry she wasn’t allowed to go to the game. You see, the Pack had yet to win [...]
Henrik Lundqvist was upset with the controversial late goal by the Senators last night and spoke about it post-game.
I don’t know about you, but my feelings are the Rangers won the game, brush the goal off and move on.
Instead, Lundqvist went in the opposite direction.
Games 2 through 5 we watched as Chris Neil dominated the Rangers physically without a care in the world as John Tortorella inexplicably stapled Michael Rupp and Stu Bickel to the bench.Well Brandon Prust finally had enough and could have changed the course of the series by doing this with the Rangers down 1-0 in the first period...
...i don't care that Prust lost...
… LOVE IT! LOVE IT! LOVE IT! Hate Chris Neil with a passion, guy is a punk.
See how the top seed in the Eastern Conference avoided a disastrous
end to the season.
Photo Credit: NorthJersey.com
With under a minute left in Game 6 of the New York Rangers- Ottawa Senators playoff series, Senators’ forward Chris Neil scored a goal, making it 3-2 Rangers while bringing the Senators within one goal. However, after a few replays, it apparently seemed as though Neil had illegally kicked the puck into a net, an illegal play which would have nullified...
Update, 10:44 a.m.:#SNPlayoffs. #Sens Neil will not face any supplemental discipline for his hit on #Rangers Brian Boyle and will be in the line up for game 6— Nick Kypreos (@RealKyper) April 22, 2012
...apparently the NHL not only favors star players when it comes to suspensions (see Shea Weber), it now includes players from Canadian teams. NHL once again bowing to pressure from...