Rangers Fourth Line Revived With Whale Help

Back to the Garden for game five! Why not win it on home ice boys?

That would be nice, especially after the downfall of the Providence Bruins. They lost during game seven after being up 3-0 going into game four. The good news for the Boston Bruins is that we have the PBruins best defense, Torey Krug and Matt Bartkowski.

Krug of course who managed to net a goal.

Game three was all about Merlot. They walked all over Brad Richards, and the Rangers’ fourth line showed weak attempts to fight against the likes of Paille, Campbell, and Thornton. That all changed in game four with the addition of forwards Micheal Haley, and Kris Newbury. These AHL players had something to prove, and much like the outstanding work of Krug and Bartkowski they weren’t going to let the Rangers down.

So, I suppose spending fall semester tracking the Connecticut Whale paid off. With the Rangers calling up from their farm team for game four I found myself prepared and excited to see these players getting post-season opportunities. I’m not surprised that they helped the Blueshirts on Thursday night, as the two played big roles during the Whale’s season.

Haley was perfect to pull up to the lacking fourth line. This enforcer was new to the Whale this season; his five previous seasons were spent fighting on the Islanders. Haley racked up 170 penalty minutes, ten goals, and thirteen assists in 69 games with the Whale.

Game four wasn’t his first time up with the Rangers as Haley was called up in the beginning of March where he played nine regular season games. Torts must have liked what Haley had to offer, for when the Whale missed out on a post season, Haley was quickly added to the Rangers’ roster and made the journey to Washington with the team.

Toward the end of the Whale’s season, Haley found himself on the scoring line. Paired with center Kelsey Tessier and Christian Thomas, this line was affectionately dubbed the “Smurf” line as Haley stood the tallest at 5’10. In their first weekend together the line managed five of 11 goals against the St John’s IceCaps. Haley is able to hold his own in a fight, and plays smart with the puck. Just what the Rangers needed to counter the Bruins fourth line.

“You could put me against anybody and I’m going to do the same things… I’ve got one train of thought… Hittin’ and bangin’ and skatin’ hard.” Reported Haley when questioned about facing the Washington Capitals, guess not much changed when it came to facing the Bruins.

As for the AHL vet Kris Newbury, he made an appearance in the Rangers game one against the Washington Capitals this post-season. I really mean appearance, with only five minutes of ice time. This season with the Whale, Newbury scored 20 goals, had 42 assists and 127 penalty minutes in 70 games. Newbury was second on the Whale with goals, Brandon Segal holding first. Newbury was traded to the NYR organization in 2010 and has seen a handful of regular season games with the Rangers.

They also played Roman Hamrlik in place if the injured Stralman. Hamrlik was acquired from the Washington Capitals this season, and if his name sounds familiar it is because he played in all seven games against the Bruins last year in the playoffs. This was his first game back after playing for only 4minutes back on April first, 2013. He only played sixteen games this half-season and had only an assist and eight penalty minutes.

The Rangers played their best game of the series Thursday night. The Bruins need to get refocused, and play the full 60minutes during game five. The second Rangers goal was painful to watch, with Chara lollygagging behind the net. Sure Rask could have been ready for it, but I’m finding it hard to blame Rask who put faith in his Captain to get the puck out of their zone.

Anyway I guess I really just wanted an excuse to write about Micheal Haley.

Fingers crossed for game five!




Bruins Burned by Iginla – Penguins Pleased

Incase you missed it, the Bruins thought they had Iginla in the bag. And they did. Until he chose to go to the Penguins.

After the shootout loss the to Montreal Canadiens, the Bruins could have used a pick up. According to anyone you asked it was going to be in the shape of Calgary’s Jarome Iginla. Arron Ward posted late on Twitter that it was a done deal, while many other Bruins reporters already had columns drying, waiting for the confirmation to hit send.

And then it all fell apart.

Iginla is a player that had a no trade clause tied onto his contract, which means he got the final say. And what did he have to say? He wanted to go to the Pittsburgh Penguins. Why? Because that was his best shot as a Stanley Cup.

Sorry you didn’t want to have to work and fight for a Stanley Cup with the Bruins bud, but ride to victory on Sidney Crosby’s shoulders. Newsflash, it takes heart to win, not a sharp shooter (Cough Tampa Bay, cough).

Peter Charelli wanted the story to be told to upset Bruins fans, so the Bruins twitter offered his side of the story:

“We were informed around noon yesterday [Wednesday] that we had the player, we won the sweepstakes, so to speak. He just had to talk to Jarome and his agent regarding the logistics of everything.” Peter Charelli told the media.

Ignila decided then that he would rather go to the Penguins, who offered much less for him. The Bruins were ready to give up their first round draft pick, defenseman Matt Bartkowski and up and comer Alexander Khokhlachev. The Penguins only offered up the rights to Kenneth Agostino and Ben Hanowski, and their first round pick [x].

The Penguins have also aqcuired Dallas Stars veteran winger Brenden Morrow and San Jose Sharks defenseman Douglas Murray , making them the team to beat. “I don’t even know why we’d bother playing the playoffs,” Senators coach Paul MacLean half-joked. (Read more).

Weeelp. Should be interesting to see how the Penguins do.
Especially since Crosby is now out indefinately with a broken jaw.
Go B’s!