The Devils are relatively irrelevant in their home state (I would know I live there and yes I went there) and a good portion of their fans still think Scott Stevens is on the team. To say that the majority of Devils 'fans' are fair weather fans is probably an understatement (one more shot). Last year when the Devils lost Game 2 on their brand spanking new home ice, their 'passionate fans' threw beers onto their own ice at the Rangers players. Yes, they threw beer onto their own ice. When they got knocked out of the playoffs, the arena was half empty before the final buzzer sounded. The remaining Devils fans booed their own team. Want a comparison? When the Rangers got knocked out, they were applauded in front of a packed arena and the Rangers players responded by saluting the crowd.
Enough of that though.
As big of a game this is for the Rangers, the sideshow is almost as big as the matchup of the two rival teams. As much as it's Rangers vs. Devils, it's Sean Avery vs. Marttyy "Fasto" Brodeur. To be fair though, Marrtty did lose some weight on his season long vacation, he looks a little less chubby in the face. Good for him.
- The Rangers have dropped their past two games and are only 2 points ahead of the 9th place Florida Panthers. The Rangers found a way to lose in Atlanta and then proceeded to lose a must win in Pittsburgh. So to say tonight's game is an 'absolute must' win would be an understatement.
- Last year the "Avery Rule" was put into affect immediately following game 3. What other league changes a rule mid-playoffs? It was a huge spectacle and everyone was talking about it. But in reality what did Avery do? He found a creative way to screen Brodeur. Big deal. A lot worse has happened on the ice. It's not like he tried to hurt anybody. It was only a big deal because it involved Avery, if it were any other player there would have been little attention paid to it and a rule changed certainly wouldn't have followed 4 hours after the game ended. Not to live in the past though. But it seems as though the league has revised the "Avery Rule". They have added a clause that allows the opposing team to do w/e they like to Avery, even if it is in plain view of the men in stripes. So feel free to make a move David Clarkson.. punk.
- Corey Potter has been called up and is going to be thrown into the fire right away. My guess is that he's going to be paired with Paul Mara. Mara has to have a bounce back game from his performance in the Igloo. According to Torts, his eye injury was not the reason he saw his ice time cut.
- Michal Rozsival should be back sometime this week.. yay ..
- I don't know whats worse, hearing Chico Resch speak or watching a Versus broadcast.
- Zach Parise is a phenomenal hockey player. It kills me that he's going to wear a Devils jersey for his entire career. He plays the game the way it was meant to be played. Plus hes American.
I dont really have too much to say today. Aside from the Avery BS (yeah I was real creative talking about that for 95% of this post) there's very little to say besides the Rangers absolutely have to win. With the tough schedule ahead (the toughest of the contending teams schedules) the Rangers have to play every game like it's going to determine their playoff hopes, because at this point, every game does