NEW YORK – As far as predictable goes, these playoffs have been anything but. Game 5 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals between the Rangers and the Capitals topped that – this game was unpredictable moment to moment according to the sports betting sites.

The Rangers set the tone for the game immediately, establishing their strong presence and scoring halfway through the first period. Nevertheless, 49 minutes later, despite 33 shots on goal and 24 more shots that were blocked by the Washington Capitals, the New York Rangers were trailing by one goal. With 21.3 seconds left on the clock, Carl Hagelin drew a four-minute penalty for high-sticking, of which three and a half seemed wasteful. On the bench, Henrik Lundqvist was thinking about the next game. By the bench, Carl Hagelin wiped the blood off his face, and hurried back to where the action was. In the stands, the fans were on their feet, and while their hope was dwindling, they were determined to show their belief and support.

“It’s awesome, ” captain Ryan Callahan said after the game. “They supported us all night. Twenty seconds left, they’re standing up chanting ‘Let’s go, Rangers!’ That fuels you. That makes you feel good. To be able to get that one for them and hear the Garden explode – I haven’t heard it that loud since I’ve been here.”

With 6.6 seconds left on the clock, the Rangers’ efforts throughout the game finally paid off, and the thirty sixth shot on goal was it.  “I think it’s fitting that Richie (Brad Richards) gets the one to tie it up there, ” said Ryan Callahan. Brad Richards is no stranger to final seconds goals – on December 17th, he scored the game-winning goal against Coyotes’ Mike Smith in the final second of the game. So he really did have 6.5 seconds to spare here. “We’ve been talking about it all year, ” said goaltender Henrik Lundqvist. “Not only on the ice but off the ice, to have a guy like that – he knows what it takes. You could tell when games are getting tighter, more important, he plays better. I think he likes the intensity in games like that. It just shows what type of player he really is.” Carl Hagelin was in agreement with Henrik Lundqvist’s assessment of Brad Richards: “I think he’s probably been that ‘go to’ guy his entire life. He knows what it takes to win, he IS a winner.”

“Would you take another high-stick to the face if it means two goals?” I ask Carl Hagelin, lip swollen, after the game, and I immediately know the answer, even before he has a chance to respond. His quick skate to the bench and back after being struck said it all. “I didn’t want to get off the ice there, it was a key part of the game. Just try to wipe some of the blood off, and then get going again.”

What seemed like a miraculous comeback was actually the result of the effort that had been there the whole game. “If you look at the blocked shots, we didn’t block many shots because we’ve had the puck, ” said coach John Tortorella, pleased with both the outcome and his team’s performance. Henrik Lundqvist had similar thoughts: “The way we played tonight, we worked so hard. It was tough for us to get in front and create real good scoring chances, but we were shooting a lot and had a lot of energy. I definitely think we deserved this win. We worked so hard.”

They also never gave up. “We stuck with it, ” said Ryan Callahan. They looked at a power play, an extra attacker, and 21.3 seconds on the clock as an opportunity, ignoring lack of success on the seven previous power plays.  “That’s just the result of working hard and creating chances this whole game. Sooner or later, it’s going to go in, and that’s why we play for sixty minutes. If it means scoring with 5 seconds to go, or 55 minutes to go – it doesn’t matter, ” said Carl Hagelin.

Game six of this back-and-forth nail-biting series is on Wednesday evening at the Verizon Center in Washington DC.  On the line is the time of the next Rangers game at Madison Square Garden.

Average Rating: 4.9 out of 5 based on 214 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2012/05/08/rangers-win-in-miracle-fashion/

January 20th already?? Holy Shit where does it go??? Well 2 and a half hours kinda slowed down today…. it wasn’t exciting… it wasn’t 96 shots on goal level epic…. but it was a win and a needed (with some spolied asshats Devils fans out who OMG WE LOST THREE IN A ROW were contemplating suicide… for Christ’s Sake… try being a Buffalo fan then whine about Panic… and Chan Gailey… ouch), but the Devils needed some rest and a willing opponent and they certainly got that in the Florida Panthers who looked like the Benoit Family Show on Ice tonight :p

the Good:
— Jacques Lemaire… he has the pulse of this team…. he knows they’re tired and it showed on the road trip, and this team needs a break, but the schedule isn’t giving them one… so he’s cutting back on the practices and even cancelled the morning skate:
“Go back to bed, ” Lemaire said…. “They looked different, ” Lemaire explained. “What’s wrong? I don’t know. That’s the million dollar question, what’s going on. A lot of things are not going right. It’s how to fix it.” (from my point of view some time off was a good way to do it!!)
— Nick Palmeri… he was in the good spots on the ice (gotta love a rookie who gives the goalie the ol’stinkface during the pp)… he was in the nasty areas (something the Devils need more of)… and he set up the Devils winning goal… he played good and I was happy to see him get his just rewards today (which is funny because if you remember WAY back in the rookie game I blasted him cause he just sucked with Tedenby)… but like that game this was only one game and he DID whiff on an empty net pp-rebound…. so no one’s perfect but a damn good debut!! (Patrick Davis was far more forgettable and served his purpose in making Rod Pelley be PIST… or perturbed if you have problems with me stealing the butchery of the Enlgish Language and making it good again :p).. and it was good to see Palmeri get rewarded with some first line ice time (and his in your fact style will make room for Zach and Zajac!)
— Dean McAmmond… he had a nice game, but man that blocked shot and beat the clock empty net goal was again a thing of pretty and good to see hard work rewarded like that!!!
— Colin White…. had a good smart game and two great knock em down hits in open ice… was good to see…. he covered alot of….ummm… gaffes (I’ll be generous)…..of Mike Mottau tonight, who was certainly gonna play his way out of the lineup this way…
— Also… how could I miss on my Andy?? <3 … good smart solid game… and a wicked "how do you do" shot that went through everyone and Vokun was lucky to get a leg on!
— the penalty kill…. barely had time to yell KILL KILL KILL…..not that anyone was paying attention anyway…..

the Bad:
— this game was kinda sleepy and lifeless at points… but hey you win ugly to get out of a funk (and the morbid douchebag side of me wanted to see more spoiled Devil-bitch-fan paranoia…. oh well)
— the power play is STILL O fer Oh-Ten… that's not good… it came close, and I loved the puck possession and most of the pp time was in the Florida End… it's getting there and Palmeri getting his shit dirty was a good thing too…..
— 27 games in a row for mb30?? Really??? I understand he played good and we go through this shit every year… but it's still an Olympic Year… and a night off Mentally…. it's a good thing now and then….
— And yeah Vokun played well too… but one goal?? That's still not gonna cut it more often then not…. again it's a win and you take it… but there's gonna be a lotta ugly nights with Elias out (again)

the Funny:
— it was quite amusing to see after some big saves and nice play both way to see the only goal scored on the goalie was a simple faceoff dot blast that gets a stick and just squeezes by Vaokun… go figure!!
— Well where to start tonight??
The crowd was kinda dead and we were too… though Patrick Davis blowing a tire and damn near smashing into Pando was funny… there wasn't a lot tonight… (hell even poor Clutch was in hiding tonight!!) but we got two gems for ya:
— Me and her LordShip went to the restaurant tonight to use my buy one get one coupon (was kinda nice to have something good given to me as a STH that wasn't demanded or bitched for by the people who buy tickets from me :p)… anyway… so for some reason the main area was "all reserved" (for a Panther game?? CMON)… so we got stuck in the bar area… by the kitchen… this was a good thing… there was a lil black woman yelling out some GEMS (I called her the kitchen Nazi, her job was to crack the whip and make all the cooks… well… cook and do their job)… and she let out some gems I tell ya!!
** "Yo these meatballs need a sista!!"
** "oh shit I needed a triplet"
** "Get this sista a finger and NOW!!!"
(I do recommend the bar seats for this amusement alone!)
— One thing that can't be left out was the standard badgering of Tasha (birthday tomorrow or not) and her Parise/Bergfors curse of not being able to see them score goals when she watches (and no assists don't count, i tried that rationalization… we know how well that works on women :-)… right?)… so we took turns trying to screen HER on the power play… the things we do for team and her sitting in the fetal position trying to cover her eyes… good stuff!! And it did lead to this semi-disgusting line:
Tasha: I wanna be in the middle of a Parise/Bergfors sandwich
Me: Well then ya might wanna start learning how to take faceoffs!!
(not exactly the way she wants the cream filling from a twisted oreo cookie)

…. well that was a nice easy way to shake off the hockey writing rust and get back to shit… back at it Friday Night!!!!

Average Rating: 5 out of 5 based on 168 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2010/01/21/thoughts-from-section-209-devils-vs-panthers-1202009/

Happy new year and all that to ya! (I know I still owe a month in review… it’s half done, I swear and I’m hoping it’s done tomorrow, but you gotta write the more pressing piece first always….and not to mention I got a little bit of Dallas Cowboys fever right now… and CMON… you know you wanna see another Phily team lose, right?)….but another feel-good night and some very pleasant memories from the 1999-2000 Stanley Cup run and all the crazy stuff I’ll try to get to down below…. all in all a great night and a great win against a VERY erratic STAARRRRRSSSS team……

the Good:
— Patrik Elias…. welcome back to the scoresheet….all those passes that Andy over-shot you to make you skate harder and get in the right place are starting to pay off… yay!
— Zach Parise… my God nine shots on goal!! (I’ll get more into this when I do the month in review but I love how his level of play didn’t drop when he slumped and he keeps playing the same way hat-trick or ten-game drought be damned!!)… pretty good night for our personal “one man Jonas Brothers”… many ‘ginies were tingling (and an evil Mickey Mouse was counting the cash!)
— PL^3… yeah he hit… yeah he did his thing… but I saw some REALLY good board work and puck control and a little finesse to keep the play and the board work going (7:40 and more ice time then Rod Pelley tells ya Jacques liked what he saw too)… and this is a step in the right direction of leaving Andrew Peters in a ditch somewhere near Bayonne HS (it’s a big-ass school, plenty of hiding spots!)
— Bryce Salvador…. I’d swear he was announced as a scratch, but 14:00 from the press-box and he looked pretty good playing from there too… smart plays… and he adds a stability to the blue line that no one else not named Andy has brought to the team this year!
— so I hear mb30 broke the old mask and had to actually be Marty Brodeur for half the game…. I really wish he’d listen when the hockey Gods TWICE tell him something :p…. and yeah shutout #106… it wasn’t as dramatic as the last two were… it kinda felt like the Stars cashed out late in that game, but it’s still a lil bit nice to be a part of more history each time the score goes to zero (and how sick is it that like one of ever 5-some wins… is of the zero variety… that’s just sick to digest….)
— and shame on me almost forgetting to talk about lil Nicky breaking the damn bank with all the stuff he won in the Zamboni race during the first period… good lord our #1 draft pick is well taken care of by this team…always good to see it happen to the deserving fans (and it shut up a fool in 109 who said the good stuff doesn’t happen to those in the cheap seats!)

the Bad:
— there was no bad last night… I’m gonna to use that space for 2000 Cup memories and my Stanley Cup Party story in that old basement apartment back that Saturday night in June of 2000 🙂

the Funny:
— Brian Rolston… first shift… looks like he blew a tire jumping on the ice… and kinda reminded me of the Matvichuk (I think)… getting injured and crawling to the middle of the ice to block shots back in 2000 for the Stars…. I should remember better who it was that was a classic moment in maybe the best, and most exciting Stanley Cup Final of the 4 the Devils had and possibly the most exciting one I remember in my lifetime… but as he was falling and limping to the bench I mumble… hrrmmm… I wonder if anyone reminded him that he got traded for Claude that year and it took him like 18 months and a second trade to mentally recover (and talk about pressure to be traded for Claude… and then be in the trade that brought Andreychuk and ESPN’s first love child, Ray Bourque, that’s a TALL order…)
— so I had what I like to call my personal “moment of Cangelosi” last night (handy link of reference:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOEO4XuQCj4 … just so you know and get what I am talking about)
…. one of my running jokes of late is that when Tasha watches the game, her boys in Parise and Bergfors NEVER score (and even when they do she gets stuck on the escalator to not see it… and I get to yell CLOSE YOUR EYES and STOP LOOKING or GO TO THE BATHROOM, we need a goal!!!)… so on the Zajac goal I saw Bergfors swat at it… I swore he tipped it in…. so i text her and go… look you finally got to see your goal…..so when they announced it was Zajac’s goal… I kinda yelled to myself… “NINETEEN!!”… oops, well at least her Lordship wasn’t there to make fun of me for that and goddamit I am taller then our roaming gnome of parody fame!

the 2000 Cup run memories:
— the Devils did a GREAT job of reliving that Cup run… hell they even dug up Steve Kelley (I guess he was glad they remembered he was on the team.. he played like one game and 10 shifts in the entire playoff run)… it’s always good to see Claude in the house again too…Larry Robinson (we all remember that locker room beatdown/tirade too of course)…. Patrik Elias in game 7…. Jason Arnott in game 6…. the “six shots on goal game” (I swear I can still hear Sundin and Pat Quinn piss and moan they had more shots on goal then that)… Scott Stevens dominating Pavel Bure and then the world…. and that game 5 in the Cup Finals… the single greatest one on one goalie duel ever seen by human eyes…..It’s been 10 1/2 years it really was the right time to remember, look back, and smile at those awesome memories (and thoughts of a 110-recap season… my God I was burnt out that summer)
— Lord Krang: lol, sherry just listed “sykora getting knocked out” as one of the memorable moments of the 2000 cup run!
(and she’d be right….Petr Suckora only knows FAIL when he is on the ice as a Stanley Cup Finalist… the only two he’s won, he was unconscious in 2000, a healthy scratch last year…. and 3 times the loser when he played)… I love when the professionals think as I do :p
— I still need to recall the party at my house that night…. it was Brian… a hockey princess we no longer associate with, her BF at the time and we’re all just there watching the game…. I remember my “SHUT THE FUCK UP AND STOP POUTING OVER SYKORA WE’RE PLAYING A FOR A STANLEY CUP” rant (one of the reasons I no longer associate with said person… the sick obsession over mediocre to BAD hockey players and not caring about who her friends were… gee, a theme in my life eh :p)…. so I blasted her so bad the boyfriend kinda hid and curled in the corner…. so a few hours later Jason Arnott does the deed… I had one of those old “giant soda bottles of popcorn” wrapped in tin foil and a bowl on top of it to look like a mini-Cup… and yeah we filled it with champagne… I think I drank a whole bottle by myself that night…. and a few more friends came over… I was on the phone with two more… John and Jen walk in (I know the names don’t matter, I think the only person I still talk of all these people is Brian, and that could change as of his wedding in September *whistles*)…. they walk in… I’m already fuzzy and the last thing I remember that night was going “OHHHH, WINE!!!”…. and then dragging the mini-Cup and champagne stinky body to Rex Plex the next day to skate around with our Cup and sweat champagne in goalie pads!! Feel free to add your own memories and comments too… it’s the right place for it!

Average Rating: 4.4 out of 5 based on 167 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2010/01/06/thoughts-from-section-209-devils-vs-starrrrrrrrrrssssssss-152010/

10:02 PM: I’m goin’ to bed.  I think none of us are all that shocked that this series is gonna go seven.  My heart might not make in ’til Tuesday night.  G’night gang.

10:00 PM: Game 7 is Tuesday night at The Rock.  Let’s just pretend like tonight didn’t happen.  Game 7 is all that matters now, and despite how tonight’s game looked, these two teams are still amazingly evenly matched.

9:59 PM: And that’s it.  4-0.  I’m sick to death of 4-0 games this year.

9:58 PM: Gionta can’t stuff it home with a little room in front – one minute left in the game.

9:56 PM: The Devils are playing without a fourth line right now – apparently both Rupp and Clarkson earned 10 minute misconducts in that little scrum before.  Only Gleason picked up one for Carolina.

9:55 PM: Three minutes left in this humiliation of a hockey game.

9:51 PM: And another blatant penalty, this one a trip via Brian Rolston.  Guys, I agreed to LiveCap this game, which means I HAVE to watch it.  At least stop taking boneheaded penalties while I’m still forced to pay attention!

9:49 PM: Shorthanded three-on-two but Shanny can’t bury the puck.  One goal would be nice at least…

9:47 PM: Somehow in the fight, the Hurricanes wound up with a power play.  Great.  Rupp took the extra two for roughing.

9:44 PM: Hey, a sign of life!  Clarkson pulls Gleason out of a scrum and after a bit of hugging, they finally give us a full-fledged fight.  Hey, it worked for the Penguins.  Problem is, Clarkson waited one goal and one period too many.

9:39 PM: Jussi Jokinen, 4-0.  Marty had no chance, of course.  Sigh.

9:37 PM: Someone on TV wasn’t happy.  Dunno if it was a fan or player, but someone yelled pretty loudly “HEY!  WHAT THE F&$% WAS THAT?!”  Immediately afterwards, Madden’s off for roughing.  A long 5-on-3 for the Hurricanes, and if you don’t have ’em yet, I’d go pick up your game 7 tickets right about now.

9:36 PM: Travis Zajac with a pretty obvious hook.  11:30 left in the third.  Bad timing, Trav.  Bad timing.

9:35 PM: Even our chances aren’t actual chances – Shanahan has Ward out of position but can’t get a shot away through the Hurricane defense.

9:32 PM: So, how ’bout them Mets?  …seriously?  8-1?  To the NATIONALS?  Ugh.  I got nothin’.

9:27 PM: That was pretty indicative of how this game’s been going:  Andy Greene with a nice run up ice, all by his lonesome, chips it past a defender at the blue line, chases after it…and trips and falls into a massive heap over a random ‘Cane.

9:24 PM: Well, here goes nothin’.  Third period on.

9:06 PM: And the second period is over.  Thank god.  3-0 Hurricanes.  Book your game seven tickets now kids, there isn’t even a hint that the Devils can come back from this one a la Tuesday night.

9:02 PM: A few seconds of serious offensive flurry in front of Cam Ward, but nothing doing.  BAH!

8:59 PM: The response is not as immediate as it was Tuesday night.

8:55 PM: I’m gonna try something.  It worked last time:

Attention Devils:

WAKE UP!

Thanks.

-2 Man Advantage.

8:52 PM: I was really hoping there wouldn’t be a game seven, because dammit, I have stuff to do Tuesday night that I’m gonna have to cancel in favor of going to The Rock.

8:48 PM: Hey hey, a shot on goal!  Stopped by Cam Ward, but at least there was a shot within the area of the red pipes, that might have gone into the net had there not be a human being standing in front of it.

8:44 PM: I give up.  AWFUL two-on-one and Marty’s just left out to dry.  3-0, Staal’s goal again.  I really don’t feel like watching this game anymore at this point.

8:41 PM: Shots on goal currently sits at 22-5 in favor of Carolina.  THAT should tell you who’s bothered to show up in Raleigh this evening.

8:38 PM: …dammit.  2-0 Hurricanes, Staal.  Dammit dammit dammit.

8:37 PM: The Devils just cannot make it to any loose pucks.  It’s scary how much better the Hurricanes look right now.

8:36 PM: Zubbie outta the box.

8:35 PM: ‘Canes gotta be up to eight or nine shots on just two power plays so far tonight.  Meep.

8:33 PM: Not the love I was speaking of.  Zubbie takes a retaliatory roughing call and it’s Carolina to the PP.

8:32 PM: Second period on.  C’mon Unseen Hand, a little love, eh?

8:14 PM: And that’ll do it for period one.  Devils start with a two-second power play to start the second period.  Shots on goal:  Carolina 15, New Jersey 4.  Oof.

8:12 PM: Uhm, guys…we ARE on the power play…That means that, well, the puck should be in the offensive zone and controlled by you the majority of the time.

8:11 PM: NICE sliding breakup of the two-on-one by Mike Mottau, then Zubbie draws a tripping penalty via Pitkanen with about two minutes left in the first.

8:10 PM: I hear it’s hot in Raleigh today – it sure is hot here – and it shows in terms of ice quality.  Or it could also be us sucking.  That’s possible.

8:08 PM: On a happier note, I’m watching this game in HD for a  change!

8:07 PM: Aaand that’s why I don’t get my hopes up.  Not a bad power play per se, but nothing to show for it nonetheless.

8:05 PM: Pitkanen hooks Gionta and we’re on the (PSE&G) Power Play.  I’d get excited if I thought we had a chance to score.

8:04 PM: Or crossbar.  Possibly holy crazy crossbar save.

8:03 PM: Holy crazy blocker save!

7:59 PM: And when I say that they’re not trying, I of course am not including Marty.  This game would be 4-0 without him right now.

7:58 PM: I understand that it’s hard to match desperation when a team’s got it’s back to the wall, but jeez, trying a little would be nice.

7:54 PM: DAMMIT!  Ray Whitney finally cracks Marty, batting a puck out of mid-air baseball-style.  1-0 Hurricanes, and perhaps more telling, 12-1 shots in the Hurricanes favor, and I refuse to believe the fact that we actually have a shot on goal.

7:51 PM: Penalty kill’d.  Thankfully, and not for lack of trying on Carolina’s end.  Eleven and a half left in the period.

7:48 PM: Oh jebus.  Pandolfo loses his stick during the PP, as does Marty, with chances galore for the ‘Canes, but STILL we finally manage to clear.  Oh man this is gonna be a crazy game, just like every other one this series before it.

7:46 PM: Well the Hurricanes sure realize that this could be their last game.  And the fans sure realize that this could be their last game as well.  Mike Rupp does not realize this, apparently, and takes a holding penalty on Jussi Jokinen.

7:45 PM: Oh, right, no Doc tonight.  Blast.

7:43 PM: I got stuck at work, but I am here now.  Langs back in, Holik’s a scratch, Greene’s still in, still no Salvador, game in 2 minutes old, no score yet.  Get it?  Got it?  Good.

Average Rating: 4.4 out of 5 based on 194 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2009/04/26/game-5-devils-hurricanes-livecap/

9:45 PM: I’m going to call it a night, boys and girls.  A great evening all around.  Thanks for checking us out tonight, goodnight!

9:43 PM: Patrik Elias with a goal and an assist ties John MacLean for the career lead in points as a Devil.  Jamie Langenbrunner ties his career high for goals in a season.  Brian Rolston earns his 300th career goal.  Martin Brodeur notches career win #551.  What.  A.  Night.

9:41 PM: Three stars – Elias, Patrice Briesbois (who played in his 1, 000th career game tonight and skated over to congratulate Brodeur while out as the second star), and, of course, Marty.

9:40 PM: The Canadians fans are standing for Marty – they went from booing their team to cheering Marty as the clock ran out.  Beautiful.  Beautiful.

9:39 PM: GAME!  Martin Brodeur has tied Patrick Roy for the all-time wins record!

9:37 PM: Last minute of the game…if you live in New Jersey and don’t have them yet, I’d advise picking up your tickets to the game on Tuesday night right about now while there’s still some good deals out there!

9:36 PM: Two minutes…Halak still in net for the Canadians.  Devils aren’t even giving them a chance to pull him if they wanted to.

9:35 PM: FORTY-FIVE shots on goal for the Devils so far tonight, versus 22 for the Habs.

9:34 PM: Fans are booing the Canadians now…so much for the possibility of their cheering Marty, at least so far.  To be fair, the Canadians have looked really bad for the last ten minutes or so.  Three minutes left.

9:33 PM: Four minutes to go…

9:28 PM: Bobby Holik doing what Bobby Holiks do best – no, not taking bad penalties, but getting physical with the goaltender.  Which, I guess could constitute a penalty, but not in this case.

9:25 PM: CAPTAINBRUNNER!  Beautiful wrist shot after backing away from the slot and it’s 3-1 Devils.  Langenbrunner ties his career high for goals, and all but one of the big milestones I mentioned at the beginning of this LiveCap have come to fruition, and the fourth one is about six minutes from being a reality as well.

9:24 PM: BIG HIT by Mike Rupp!  Pacioretty, with his head down, is knocked loopy by Rupp between the circles.

9:23 PM: I’d really, really like this game to be over.  My tummy hurts.

9:20 PM: Ten to go in the period.  It’s been kinda slow since the first, eh?

9:17 PM: Clarkaround!  Of course it doesn’t go, and a quick whistle puts an end to any rebound chance.

9:12 PM: DAMN!  Two-on-one for Zajac/Parise but a beautiful defensive play by Briesbois puts an end to that before Zajac can shoot or pass.  Nice play by Patrice.

9:11 PM: 34 shots on goal for the Devils so far, and it’s still only 2-1.  Halak’s been pretty damn good.  Dammit.

9:08 PM: Man oh man, if Marty does tie the record tonight, he will have definitely earned it.  Good couple of chances for Les Habs on the power play, all stood up by Senor Brodeur.

9:07 PM: One minute down in the Canadians PP.

9:04 PM: Ooooo, more chippy-ness following a Bryce Salvador over-the-glass delay of game penalty.  Nothing more comes of it and Salvador is the only one to sit in the box.  Canadians to a PP.

9:01 PM: Third period on!

8:44 PM: Aaaand that’s the end of two.  Score remains 2-1 and I will see you, if you’re still out there, in the third.

8:43 PM: Ouch.  Zajac gets smushed behind the Canadians net.  He’s okay though.  Crazy sustained pressure by the Devils in the Canadians zone.

8:39 PM: Ah, Josh Gorges held someone, that was the Canadians penalty.  As for our power play – some chances, no goals.  Halak’s pretty good about his rebound control.  Power play is over, three minutes to go in the second.

8:38 PM: Huh.  We come back from commercial to be on a power play, but I wasn’t really paying attention so I don’t know why.  I’ll take it, though!

8:36 PM: I dislike Halak.  He’s playing pretty well tonight, which disappoints me greatly.  Didn’t he get the memo that it’s Marty’s night?  Jackass.

8:34 PM: Things getting chippy.  Clarkson in the middle, of course.  Before that was Rupp getting cranky with some Canadians.  Also of course.

8:31 PM: Habs with some serious pressure on Marty and in the Devil end for the first time tonight.

8:29 PM: Canadians fans cheer wildly for the most mundane of bringing-the-puck-up-the-ice plays.

8:23 PM: Wow, the replays of those two stops showed they were even more awesome than they originally appeared.  He kicks one out with a leg behind his body, then blocks the other with his shoulder while falling down.  Hot diggity!

8:20 PM: Marty with a couple of big stops!  Wait, they’re actually going to make him WORK to tie the record?  I thought this was an arranged marriage type situation?!

8:18 PM: This Shanahan-Zubrus-Clarkson line – I like the cut of it’s jib.  Another thing I like?  That little WRAT promo angling for disenfranchised former K-Rock listeners.  Shame most K-Rock listeners can’t pick up The Rat.

8:16 PM: That was funky.  Somehow Parise wound up in the Canadians net, wiping out Halak in the process.  No penalty on young Zachary, however, much to the chagrin of the Canadians faithful.

8:13 PM: This power play, not so great.  PP time is up and the teams skate five aside.  Also, I kinda like these retro Canadians jerseys.  At least they’re not the barbershop jersey from earlier this season/way early in the Canadian’s existence.

8:12 PM: Oh yeaaaah, we’re still on a power play!  Usually that “oh yeaaaah” realization only happens when we’re killing a penalty to start a period.

8:12 PM: We back, yo.

7:53 PM: ‘nother Canadians penalty, another delay of game penalty, this one on Markov.  Period ends with the Devils on the PP – 1:47 of PP time to start the second when we get back.  14-7 Devils by way of shots on goal, 2-1 Devils by way of score, and I will see you in seventeen minutes.

7:52 PM: Clarkson wants to wraparound so badly.  He’s been thinking it at least twice tonight, only to be stopped before he even really got started.

7:48 PM: Oh jeez, Marty gets bodychecked by Alex Tanguay.  It was definitely a penalty, but Marty sure made it look good, too.  Hah.  Devils again to the PP – fourth time already tonight.  Two minutes to go in the period.

7:47 PM: Patrick Roy’s in the building.  Hooray, I guess.

7:44 PM: I can’t believe I didn’t notice this immediately – Patty Elias gets the assist on the Rolston goal, tying him with Johnny Mac for the all-time lead in points as a Devil!  ‘grats PATTY too!

7:40 PM: The ice-level microphones are working quite well tonight.  You could hear Kostopoulos’…uhm…”complaints” about his last penalty loud and clear, same with the ref yelling “NO HIGH STICK NO!” when Patrik Elias tipped the puck into the zone just then.  This amuses me.

7:37 PM: Dang.  Tomas Plekanec with a goal.  2-1 Devils now, and the shutout counter ain’t gonna change tonight.  Sad.

7:35 PM: WHOA!  Rolston with a dump-in, blocked down by the defender right back to Rolston, who blasts it by Halak!  That’ll be Rolston’s 300th of his career (‘grats Rollie!) and it’s 2-0 New Jersey.

7:33 PM: ‘nother Canadians penalty – silly Tom Kostopoulos, you don’t have to hold Mike Mottau to slow him down!

7:31 PM: Madden shorthanded breakaway – misses wide.  Okay, maybe his hand WAS amputated, without the aid of hospital-grade painkillers.

7:30 PM: Komisarek outtathabox for Montreal, one minute of penalty-kill time.  Also, Mad Dog’s back out, so I guess his hand didn’t have to be amputated.  Or it did and he’s hepped up on Pecosets.

7:26 PM: Aw dang.  Gionta with a holding-the-stick penalty.  Four-on-four for a minute, then Canadians to the PP.

7:24 PM: GOAL!  Patrik Elias with a BLAST and the Devils with a 2 MAN ADVANTAGE goal!  1-0 Devils, Elias with his 700th point as a Devil, one shy of Johnny Mac’s record, and we’re still on a power play for 1:45ish.

7:23 PM: Devils to the 2 MAN ADVANTAGE!  Someone from Montreal flips the puck over the glass and the Devils get the 2MA for, oh, 7 seconds.

7:22 PM: Good pressure, bad staying-on-feet skills.  Zajac takes a tumble in the offensive zone.

7:20 PM: Langenbrunner to Parise, who’s sliding on his butt directly into the goalpost.  Luckily, sliding on his butt was the result of a Tom Kostopoulos hold, and the Devils to a PP.

7:19 PM: John Madden takes a shot off the hand and heads to the bench.  Man up, Madden.  Man up.

7:17 PM: I’m moderately disappointed that the game’s been on for two minutes and we haven’t scored yet.

7:15 PM: Puck’s on the ice in Montreal!

7:09 PM: Les Habs are continuing their 100th year celebration by wearing another old jersey, one that is primarily white.  Which means the Devils are wearing their home reds.  Works for me, the way they’ve been playing at home lately.

7:02 PM: Need MORE proof that tonight’s gonna be a huge historic event?  Check out who’s roaming in the comments section!  Hiya P!

7:00 PM: Obviously, the big one:  With a Devils victory, Martin Brodeur ties Patrick Roy’s record of 551 career wins.  Other possibilities:  With two points, Patrik Elias can tie John MacLean’s record for career points as a Devil.  With a goal, Jamie Langenbrunner will top his career high for goals in a season.  Also, Brian Rolston’s next goal will give him 300 on his career.  Finally, Kevin Weekes is two chapters shy of finishing Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, completing his quest to finish the series while the rest of the team plays hockey games.

6:47 PM: There’s something historic in the air this evening.  Some kind of record could be tied tonight.  Actually numerous milestones can be attained – I’ll run it down in a bit.  LiveCap coming – let me know you’re out there!

Average Rating: 4.6 out of 5 based on 282 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2009/03/14/devils-canadians-livecap/

Feast your eyes on this:

There you have it, folks.  The REAL reason the Devils walked away with the win last night.  Alright, that might be a bit superficial.  The FIFTY shots on goal might’ve had some small part in that, too.

But seriously — how often do you sit down with a plate of chicken fingers and look down to see one that looks EXACTLY like the state you are in??  Am I the only one who smells a major marketing scheme here?!

Well, even if I am, I’m going for it.  Who else thinks we should send a little e-mail to the Devils and try to get the chicken fingers in the joint all cut into the shape of the Garden State?!

Too bad they weren’t fish-sticks. 😉

Average Rating: 5 out of 5 based on 253 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2009/02/12/tastes-like-chicken/

So the boys have completed their first road trip of the season and are returning home with a very respectable 4-1-0 record. The trend thus far seems to be thousands of shots on goal with minimal results on the scoreboard, but apparently that’s all that’s been needed. Marty has been Marty, and the D has been…well, the D. You know — giving us the occasional coronary every now and then, nothing out of the ordinary.

Oh, right — and we’ve lost Bobby Holik and Brian Rolston. Yup, Both of them. Rolston probably for a month or two.

I really don’t know what to make of this situation. It’s kind of funny — in a cosmic sort of way. Ya know, we bring back two veterans from the past and instantly our team is somewhat of a threat again. We get all amped up about it, and now they’re both sidelined less than three weeks into the season. On the other hand, there’s the fact that neither one of them has really had much of an impact on the outcome of the first five games, aside from Rolston’s game-winner in Atlanta.

As a Devils fan, I almost feel contractually obligated to round up my fellow fans and organize a cult-like mass suicide. But, for some reason or another, I’m still optimistic that the favorable results will continue. (Maybe that’s you-know-who’s way of telling me to stop drinking.)

This year’s Black & Red squad is a deeper one than last year’s, and I think we will be reminded of that over the next month or so. For instance, the group is definitely younger. Vrana is much more favorable to have in the lineup than Sergei Brylin; and on the same side of things I’d rather have Leblond playing over Aaron Asham. (Leblond has been called up to fill in for Holik for Wednesday’s game vs. Dallas.) Are they going to be easy replacements for Holik & Rolston? No. Hell No. But I think they will fit in nicely with the mold of the team and continue to help do the little things right. After all, that’s what has gotten this team to where they are now.

At one point or another, every team in the NHL will be going through a scenario similar to this. There will be other star-players that will go down and other rookies will get their shots with the big boys. I guess a positive to take out of this would be the fact that we’re only five games into the season, we have a .800 winning percentage, and six of the next seven will be home games for New Jersey. Not to mention the upcoming opposition hasn’t exactly been making much noise thus far.

The next several weeks will be very telling of the dynamic and character of this year’s New Jersey Devils. I’m tempted to watch with my hands half-covering my eyes, like it’s a badly-written television drama.

I guess what I’m trying to say is… Don’t hit that panic button just yet. I think you will be pleasantly surprised with the way the team will perform in the absence of Rolston & Frankenstein.

If, two weeks from now, all hope seems to be lost…just be happy it’s not the last week of March.

Average Rating: 4.6 out of 5 based on 276 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2008/10/20/hold-on-to-your-horns/

9:44 PM: Brent Sutter: “Ankle sprain. He’ll be fine.” Uhhhhhh…yeah. Kay. Thanks, Brent, you’ve been quite informative.

9:41 PM: Alright, so no word on Rolston yet. If they say anything that actually means anything, I’ll post it up here. I’m expecting “lower body injury” (or possibly “head cold”) with no actual idea as to how long he’ll be out. If it’s different, I’ll let you know. If not, goodnight all!

9:24 PM: And, like the game itself, the first LiveCap of the season is in the books, it wasn’t pretty, but it happened. I’ll stick around a bit longer to see if we get an update on Rolston’s condition, but I’m not holding my breath…

9:22 PM: GAME! 1-0 Devils. It wasn’t pretty, the offensive production still sucks, the power play still sucks, but it’s a win nonetheless. Marty’s now 10 wins from tying Patrick Roy for most all-time by a goalie (11 from breaking the record), and six shutouts away from tying Terry Sawchuk for most shutouts of all-time., seven from breaking the record.

9:22 PM: BEAUTIFUL defensive play by Martin to prevent a shot on goal on the rush. Twenty seconds to go.

9:21 PM: Empty Thrasher net.

9:17 PM: Ice is tilting Atlanta’s way with two minutes to go. Meep.

9:15 PM: ANOTHER two-on-one featuring Jay Pandolfo, another non-shot-on-goal. At least no one crashed in a heap into the boards this time, though, so, y’know, take what we can get, yes?

9:13 PM: No updates on Rolston (what, you expected the Devils would reveal anything ever at any time?), but the replay reminds me a little Sidney Crosby’s crash into the boards last year that resulted in his high ankle sprain. Let’s hope that’s not the case here…

9:12 PM: Still 1-0, seven minutes to go in the game. Zubrus is now centering Elias and Gionta, so I guess the great line shake-up of the second period has ended. The 32 fans in attendance are chanting! It sounds impressive for 32 people.

9:09 PM: Rolston hit the boards after losing an edge, Chico says he needed help getting into the locker room because he couldn’t put much weight on his foot. Me no likey.

9:07 PM:Elias and Rolston two-on-one gets broken up, and after the play, Rolston is down and looks to be hurting…crap. Just…crap.

9:05 PM: Shorthanded two-on-one for Madden and Pando, Madden passes, and Pando fires it directly into Lehtonen’s pads. Another two-on-one, Elias and Pando, again nothing doing. But it’s chances, at least! …right?

9:04 PM: Atlanta’s on a power play and I have no idea why. Either I wasn’t paying attention or MSG didn’t think it was important to tell me. Neither would be surprising. Atlanta hits the pipe on the power play.

9:01 PM:Penalty kill’t. Big save by Marty (and then again possibly by Salvador’s backside) at the end of the Thrasher power play. Our power play may be awful, but at least the penalty kill’s holding up it’s end of the bargain…

8:58 PM: Paul Martin going off for a holding-the-stick penalty, Thrashers to the PP again.

8:55 PM: Marty with a save on Bogosian. Come to think of it, has Bogo scored yet in his pro career? Marty seems to like giving up first career goals…

8:52 PM: Third period’s on, goal credited to Rolston after all. Zubrus and Gionta on the assists.

8:35 PM: And that’s the end of period #2, 1-0 Devils. 20 shots on goal (I still refuse to believe that). Third period coming up soonish.

8:33 PM: The official announcement at the arena is giving the goal to Langenbrunner from Rolston and Zubrus. Lehtonen with a huge glove save on Elias keeps it a one-goal game.

8:31 PM: FINALLY! Rolston, let off the point at the power play, forces his way in front of the net and jams home his own rebound. Devils lead 1-0, Rolston notches his first of his second Devils go-round, and the Devils power play finally picks up another goal. Alllll right.

8:30 PM: Exelby takes the roughing penalty for his tackle of Langenbrunner, the ever-dangerous Devil power play takes the ice.

8:27 PM: Now it’s Rolston, Langenbrunner, and Zubrus. And hey, even a little scrummy-ness involving the Cap’n and Garnet Excelby. The most life I’ve seen tonight. The 32 fans in attendance even seemed to wake up.

8:26 PM: Rupp/Zajac/Parise? Really?

8:24 PM: Cangelosi just said the shots for the second are 13-5 Devils. I refuse to believe this. There is no way I’ve seen thirteen Devil shots on the night, let alone this period.

8:19 PM: Clarkson wraparound try! Gasp and shock, it’s not even close.

8:15 PM: Zubrus charging in on a three-on-one, opts to shoot…and misses the net entirely. Blast.

8:13 PM: I wonder how we managed to win two games so far this year considering I can’t recall ever actually scoring any goals…

8:06 PM: Hey hey, something interesting! Brodeur with a stop on the big blast by White (not Colin, Todd), leaves a huge rebound and manages to get in front of the follow-up shot as well. Stellar stop by Marty. The 32 fans in the building agree.

8:04 PM: I think Sutter’s futzing with the lines again. Clarkson was just out there with Holik and Rupp. Zubrus is centering Rolston and Elias at the moment as well.

8:01 PM: God, Lehtonen is leaving some juicy rebounds. However, in shades of last year, the Devils can’t do a damn thing about it. Penalty’s over, though. Devils have killed three of three of ’em tonight now.

8:00 PM: Okay, second period on, Devils still on the PK. A little bit more…something, this period? Anything? Please?

7:42 PM: Aaaaand that be the end of a very boring first period, scoreless after one. See you in seventeen for what can only be a more interesting second. I hope.

7:39 PM: Welp, least they killed that one. Holik gets booed by the 32 Atlanta fans in attendance tonight. Yet another Devils penalty coming up, Zajac for hooking. Less than a minute to go in the period.

7:36 PM: See, this is why I miss Doc. Cangelosi lied to me, it’s actually Atlanta on the power play, not so much the Devils.

7:34 PM: And just as one penalty expires, and new one commences. The Devils get their turn on the power play, again. So in two minutes, the score will still be zero-zero, again.

7:31 PM: And so Colin White goes off for interference. This game is rather boring. Sorry. Last year’s early-season game in Atlanta was all kinds of crazy. I miss that game. A little.

7:26 PM: Even Chico’s mentioning how few fans are in the building. And is also touting the Thrashers “Buy a ticket, eat all you want for free” sections deal. Chico Eats: HOTlanta Edition!

7:23 PM: How they managed to not get it in, I don’t have the slightest. Good pressure again, but once again, nothing doing as far as scoring. Devils PP is now 0-for-2 on the evening, and 1-for-13 on the year. Ouch.

7:22 PM: I say it every time the Devils play Atlanta, but DAMN the Thrashers have ugly jerseys.

7:20 PM: ‘nother penalty on the Thrashers, this one interference on David Clarkson. Don’t the Thrashers know they don’t have to interfere with David Clarkson, that he’s perfectly capable of stopping his own progress? Regardless, Devils PP again.

7:17 PM: You know, as a Devils fan, I should be used to empty arenas…and yet, I keep finding myself strangely drawn to the swaths of empty seats whenever the camera catches the stands. It’s almost hypnotizing.

7:15 PM: A nice chance in front for Pandolfo, who sends a backhander at the Atlanta goal with the speed of a honey-soaked tortoise. Sigh.

7:13 PM: Surprisingly strong on the puck deep in the zone, but Atlanta manages to clear each time. We’re not looking stellar tonight boys.

7:11 PM: Schneider with a puck-over-the-glass deal and the vaunted (ha!) Devils power play hits the ice. Oh boy oh boy.

7:09 PM: Puck’s on the ice in Atlanta. You wouldn’t know it from the crowd though. My goodness, and they say we don’t draw in Jersey. Hot damn.

7:01 PM: Oh dammit. First LiveCap of the year, and Doc’s sick. Sigh. Get well Doc. Other Devils news for tonight: Salmela’s hanging out in the press box tonight, and Andy Greene gets into his first game of the year. He’ll be paired with Johnny Oduya.

6:45 PM: What’s that coming over the hill? It it a LiveCap? It it a LiveCap? Ahhh musical references no one will get…see you in 15!

Average Rating: 4.6 out of 5 based on 294 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2008/10/16/devils-atlanta-livecap/

Second Intermission – A little better. Slow start once again, and another goal for the Rangers made it look bleak, but they came back strong late in the period. Madden’s goal was a thing of beauty for this team right now. Rugged, standing his ground in front of the net, digging the puck out of Lundqvist’s pads and putting them OVER Henrik. Novel idea, right, shooting HIGH on the guy with refrigerator doors for pads? It happened late enough in the period that hopefully it carries over into the third.

Voros’ goal pissed me off a little. Not the fact that he scored, but the way he reacted made me sick. He got jostled a little as he scored, and got up and got in Colin White’s face, then kind of backed off and raised his arms, but in a really aggressive, “F-you” kind of way. I wish Colin would have just decked him right there, but of course not.

Alot more offense later on, actual pressure and sustained offensive chances. To borrow a Doc-ism, the Unseen Hand certainly turned in the Devils’ favor starting around the halfway point in the second.

I may or may not be back with a game recap, as I should be in bed already. Regardless, if they keep playing like they did in the last few minutes of the second for the rest of the game, they’ve still got a chance.

Oh…and SHOOT HIGH!

First Intermission – That was not the start I expected. All the talk of not being a doormat, remembering what happened last year, getting revenge – what did it bring? Five shots on goal, six tops? Whatever the final tally, there was a gigantic stretch of time in the middle when they couldn’t get a single shot on Lundqvist. There’s just no excuse, not in the first game against a team you could only beat twice in thirteen games last year. This is supposed to be a statement, and right now, it isn’t one.

I wish I knew what was up with Marty in Ranger games, but he seems good for one major gaffe against them every other game or so. Yes, the puck was deflected by Oduya, but it’s like football – if you can get your hand on it, you can catch it. Methinks Marty was thinking too far ahead in the play – who he was going to get it to on the breakout, perhaps – and forgot to actually catch the thing.

All that said, it’s still only 1-0. The Devils have been in this situation twice this year, and twice they’ve come back from it, so there’s every reason to believe they will do it again. See you during the second intermission.

Pre-game – My original goal tonight was to do the first LiveCap of ’08-’09, but I just got a phone call telling me to be in work at 5 AM tomorrow. So, since I’ll likely be in bed before the end of this evening’s game, please watch this space for between-period updates, opinions, and so on and so forth. I’ll update at least after the first and hopefully after the second as well. Enjoy the game and LET’S GO DEVILS!

Average Rating: 4.4 out of 5 based on 178 user reviews.

http://www.2manadvantage.com/2008/10/13/devils-rangers-battle-of-the-undefeateds/