Okay, on we go...
* As much as it pains me to see Marian Gaborik on the penalty kill, it gives me an odd sense of pleasure to see him clear the puck and draw the respect of the crowd. It's a rare "superstar" that takes every aspect of the game so seriously and that doesn't act like he's "better" than anyone. I appreciate him for all he does. Even if I bit off all my nails tonight watching it.
* Rozsival drew cheers from the crowd twice - count 'em, twice - tonight for making 1) a good defensive play and 2) laying a check on the opponent, both rarities for the defensemen. Come on now, though, seriously - who at the start of season would have thought it'd be Rozsival and not Redden drawing the ire from the Garden crowd on most nights? Not me, that's for sure!
* Despite the end result - which makes me slightly ill, I must admit - I thought it was a game of good pace, back and forth. The Rangers were sloppy and the Devils owned them at many junctures, getting in deep, getting to loose pucks, and embarassing some of the defense. But, yet, the game was not a total disappointment to me. Maybe I'll think differently later in the morning.
* How cool was it that Michael Del Zotto - the 19-year-old Michael Del Zotto - was the first person going over to Brian Rolston - when there was some contact on Hank after a play? What a refreshing thing to see. Redden wouldn't drop the gloves during last year's Avs/Rangers hate fest, but the 19-year-old super rookie is the first to come to his goalie's defense. I love this kid!
* The Rangers have now lost 2 games in a row, which would mean nothing, except for their strong start and the fact that it seems odd given that start. (What, you ask, they are human after all?) They cannot afford, in my mind, to let it go to three, this weekend in Montreal. They need a big game, to fire on all cylinders, and to do what got them started right in the first place - high-tempo play, strong defensive contributions, strong 3rd periods, and movement on the powerplay. The Rangers need to make a statement Saturday, because, let's be honest here - I am not sure who exactly I am going to be rooting most for on Monday. The Rangers to win, or Prucha and the Coyotes to show the Rangers they are legit. As of Thursday - it's still a toss-up. We'll see how I feel come Monday.
Or am I?
**Not the plan but there was and will be a two week hiatus of My Game of the Week. This no-Sunday schedule really put a hitch in my plan, I'll be honest. Somewhere along the line in the long season, I'm sure it'll even out, but unfortunately I've been much too busy this early going. Hope everyone else is having more chance to see the other games than I am. Some fun stuff going on in the league, that's for sure. Some crazy stuff too. Gosh, I love hockey!**