- Shelly for a Sixth: The word that I've been describing this trade with is unnecessary. Last night Voros, Avery, and Prust were in the lineup. Granted, none of them are enforcers, but Prust and Avery keep the opponents on their toes and Voros is big enough to cause some damage if necessary. I thought Brian Boyle used his body more often last night as well. Point is, I do not think we actually need an enforcer in a lineup that is struggling to score. This line from Johnathan Willis describes Sather's point-of-view well in my opinion:
"Glen Sather gets the fighter to fill a role that he regards as important."
So who gets dropped for Shelly? Prust is at least good in his own zone and works hard, so I don't think he deserves to sit. It will most likely be Voros, who is basically equal in terms to Shelly.
- Betts Signs Extension: The Flyers signed Betts to a two-year $1.4 Million dollar extension today. I have nothing against Brian Boyle, I guess because he's a big body, but at the same time I'd still rather have Betts. Solid on faceoffs, shot-blocking machine, Penalty-Kill specialist. My buddy kept saying last night that the Rangers looked lost and were just sloppy in general. I agreed, as the passing and some of the decisions (Girardi - first goal - D TO FREAKIN' D IT'S THAT SIMPLE) we're atrocious. As cliché as it is, you have to do the little things right to beat good competition, and Blair Betts excels in that department.
- Finally, 2 points: Refreshing to see a win last night, but I just thought that the Penguins didn't play that well and Hank was the obvious difference again. Good pressure at times from the Rangers, but the defensive system Tortorella is attempting to run (if there is one - sometimes I can't tell) isn't working. Everyone, including myself, thought that with the presence of Tortorella scoring would go up and the Defense would remain unchanged. Well, the D-system apparently left with Renny, as the Rangers GF/GA Ratio is below even last year's level (09/10: .93 - 08/09: .96 - 07/08: 1.07). In the end, I think the Rangers beat a team that didn't play like it could, but it was a better performance all around.
- Rangers Magic Number: I'm always into the stats, and I visited a site I haven't been to in a while today. Sports Club Stats monitors the percent chance of making the playoffs across a bunch of sports, and of course I ended up on the Rangers page quickly. Without the stats, I would say most Ranger fans (and the club, for that matter) think they can make the playoffs. I wouldn't disagree, but my biggest thing is that I don't think the team deserves to be in the playoffs. Henrik Lundqvist and Marion Gaborik do, but beyond that I would have to make arguments. As of today, the Rangers have a 19.6 % chance of making the playoffs. The magic record for a good chance of making the playoffs (60 %) is 12-6-3. That's a winning percentage of .643 - something I'm not sure the Rangers can pull off. So, I guess I'll just go ahead and say the magic number for the Rangers to make the playoffs is going to be a minimum of 12 wins out of their last 21 games left. Let the fun (or tank?) begin.