Before we get started — I know that summer is almost over. Life kept getting in the way of this year’s Summer Survival Guide. As some of you may know I’ve had a lot on my plate this summer. Okay, enough with the excuses. It’s time to make with the silly.
Is it really August already? We’re officially adrift in the doldrums of the offseason, haunted by mirages of KHL free agent rumors whilst we collectively crave the soft, pink flesh of rum-ham. This year’s doldrums feel particularly dull because the Rangers didn’t throw Scrooge McDuck levels of money at free agents on July 1. The only UFA signing Gorton made after free agency opened was Fredrik Claesson — what in the hell is a Claesson?
Thankfully we are only a handful of weeks away from training camp and things getting rolling in September. I’m here to offer you some strategies on how to pass the time between now and the next time something — anything — happens with the Rangers.
This summer you can...
Grow accustomed to David Quinn’s accent
We all know that the Rangers have a new bench boss in David Quinn. Gone is the gum-chewing Alain Vigneault with his Robert De Niro-esque squinty eyes. In his place is a Bostonian Benedict Cumberbatch stunt double with Clark Kent hair and an accent that can only be properly imitated with a mouthful of corned beef and cabbage.
Quinn’s accent will take some getting used to, especially after hours and hours of Vigneault’s ehhhs and uhhhs. But don’t worry friends, I have a plan. I believe that the 2006 film The Departed, which is currently on Netflix, can be our Rosetta Stone. Although I’m pretty sure that we didn’t find any hieroglyphs on the Rosetta Stone that translated to: “Maybe. Maybe nawt. Maybe go f**k yahself.” God damnit, I hate kinda liking Mark Wahlberg sometimes. Feel it, feel it!
If The Depaahted fails as our Rosetta Stone, we can just repeatedly watch the video of those two goofballs who questioned the fabric of reality when they stumbled upon an ocean sunfish. If we can figure out what the hell they’re talking about, we should have no trouble understanding Quinn.
Listening to Quinn talk makes me want to brew my own beer, solve cold cases, and play no pads tackle football.
Dare to be different
Rebuilds take a lot of time and patience, but do they have to? Almost every NHL team has a hired an analytics guru (or two). Teams are snatching up everyone they can find who’s holding an abacus or has Tableau bookmarked. But let’s carry the ball even further. Let’s consider every option.
What can the Rangers do to accelerate the rebuild outside of venturing into ethical gray areas like cloning and hot gluing some cyborg legs onto Jaromir Jagr’s voluptuous thighs? Let’s talk hypnosis.
That guy is so confident in his abilities that he doesn’t even bother to wear a helmet. I mean, damn son.
Too far-fetched you say? Hell, in 1978 the U.S. military tried to harness psychic abilities in order to gain an edge in the Cold War. Am I the only one who has seen The Men Who Stare at Goats? It’s also worth mentioning that the Rangers hired a hypnotist during the 1950-51 season to make them suck a lot less. Sure, it didn’t really work then, but that was then, buddies.
We just have to find another hypnotist who has a top bun and ear gauges with a soothing voice. If we can’t find that handsome devil, there’s always Chris Cady. He can do things like convince people that their tattoos have magic powers. Rumor has it that Ryan Spooner has a giraffe tattoo. Need I say more?
Repeatedly breaking sticks by cross-checking a punching bag? Seems legit. I’m gonna be honest with you guys, I tapped out after the stick breaking thing. Let’s just stick with the rollerblading sexy dude with the gauges.
Try to figure out if Jeff Gorton is Thanos in disguise
Now, I know what you are all thinking. Thanos has purple skin and is part of an ancient and immortal cosmic race. Jeff Gorton is a 50 year old man from Little Rock, Arkansas. But, before you dismiss this theory, let’s connect a few dots...
- Thanos is well known for his deep and distinct vertical chin wrinkle things.
- Gorton is known for his deep and distinct forehead wrinkles.
- Thanos has destroyed a sun just for shits and giggles.
- We can’t say for sure if Jeff Gorton has not done this. The bottom line is we don’t know much about him. How many of you guys knew he was from Little Rock?
- Thanos believes that he must eliminate half of the life in the known universe in order to put an end to want and suffering. No one is safe when he snaps his fingers whilst wearing the Infinity Gauntlet.
- Gorton believes he must eliminate half of the Rangers’ roster in order to rebuild and start anew. No one is safe when he texts, “Sup?” to John Chayka or Don Sweeney.
- Thanos was willing to sacrifice his own daughter to achieve his ultimate goal. What an a-hole.
- Gorton was willing to repeatedly destroy Mats Zuccarello’s pure, precious heart to achieve his ultimate goal. What a monster.
Still not convinced? Well, maybe it is a bit of a stretch. I mean, Thanos is somewhere between 6-foot-7 and 8-feet tall and he could probably punch a hole through a blue whale. He’s also literally made out — I’m talking tongues wriggling against each other like two blind snakes trying to get past each other in a narrow tunnel — with the embodiment of Death. Like hardcore making out. Teeth and tongues and awkward gasping for air and everything. Oh, and then he later killed Death. So yeah, Gorton probably isn’t actually Thanos the Mad Titan.
On second thought, let’s not rule anything out just yet. Just imagine how much more you’d be convinced if GorThanos was depicted by a real artist! If Gorton starts sporting an ornate, gilded gauntlet crafted by Peter Dinklage on his left hand, it will officially be time to fill our pants with crap.
Listen to Bantering the Blueshirts
And come to “The Forum” on Aug. 25! You’ll get to listen to Joe and I talk Rangers with the good folks from the Blueshirts Breakaway Podcast and the Garden Faithful Podcast. The event is taking place at The Beer Authority on 300 W. 40th Street. Tickets are $20, and come with a free beer and a personal apology from Joe for his piss poor proofreading skills.
I’ve never done anything like The Forum before, so there’s a very good chance I will be as terrified and sweaty as a chubby gazelle that suddenly realizes that it’s too far from the rest of its herd at the same moment that it notices some distinctly lion-shaped creatures approaching through the golden grass of the Serengeti. You don’t wanna miss that. Did I mention the free beer and the Joe?
However you choose to pass the time this summer I hope that your days are filled with friends, laughter, and air conditioning. Remember to take care of yourself and to be excellent to each other, always. Until next time.