Throughout the lockout, many blogs are doing fake recaps of the games that should’ve been taking place. I’ve decided to go another route by doing real recaps…of the games that happened on that date one year ago.
Everyone has certain games they look up when the season schedule comes out in July. For me, it is when will the Rangers be playing the Coyotes and which arena will it be taking place in. If it’s in New York, I need to claim those tickets from my family before anyone else does. In Phoenix and I circle the date on my calendar so I don’t make plans. (Yes, these are my teams and I want to see the game.)
These games are always interesting to watch with me since I root for both teams. But instead of cheering for every goal, I tend to yell at “my boys” for making the mistake that led to every goal. I’m serious. It’s an experience. To give you guys an idea what it’s like I’m going to place in italics my reactions to the Rangers-Coyotes game that took place on December 17th, 2011. It was quite a game to say the least.
For the Rangers, the game started well as they scored shortly into their first power play opportunity eight minutes into the first period. Marian Gaborik got the goal, his first of the game. Oddly enough, Taylor Pyatt was in the box. (True story: I read that he was in the box on the recap and wondered how the Rangers were on the power play. He hasn’t even played a game for the Blueshirts and I think of him as a Ranger!)
You can see the video here. My reaction? Oakie (Aucoin)! What were you even trying to do there? … Nice pass Del Zotto!
The Coyotes took three more penalties in the period in which the Rangers did nothing on. Smart move Yotes! Everyone knows the Rangers don’t score more than one goal on the power play so just stay in the box and you’ll be set!
But the Rangers did one better as they actually let in a goal while on the power play. I don’t remember why there was a face-off in their zone but I do remember there was 10 seconds to go in the period and of course they lost the face-off to lead leading to the Coyotes tying the game.
You can see the goal here. Come on Rangers! Can’t you ever win a face-off? … Woohoo! Korpi!
The second period was relatively quiet in the sense that there were no goals until the last minute of the period. Of course there were handful of penalties that led to me yelling at both teams and an injury to Steve Eminger that we got to see on 24/7 which I didn’t care to re-live. (I would link it here if I could find video but basically it’s when he separated his shoulder and if my memory serves me correctly, we got to see them “putting it back in place”.)
As I mentioned, though, there was a goal. On the power play with less than a minute to go, the Coyotes took the lead on this mess of a play:
This is what happens when you give a team a two man advantage, Rangers. Really Yotes? You wait till just as the first guy comes out of the box so you lose the rest of the power play? (I told you I get bi-polar in these games!)
A little over a minute into the third period, the Rangers tie the game as Marian Gaborik gets his second of the night and 300th career NHL goal on this “play”:
Sorry for the horrible video but it was all I could find. Oh Yandle! Where were you trying to put that? There was no one there but Ranger players!
Tie game with a full period to play. Of course nothing happened and it looked like the teams were headed to overtime when one of the greatest moments of the season happened. The below video has both broadcasts – the Rangers are first and at 4:28 starts the Coyotes:
Wait…that’s in! Are you kidding me? ARE YOU KIDDING ME? … My poor Yotes. My poor, poor Yotes…
Yes I seriously sat there feeling bad for the Coyotes when that puck hit the net. There is one time a year I want the Rangers to go to overtime – against the Coyotes. This way both my teams get a point. I also happen to like Keith Yandle as a player and he had a horrible game so I felt bad for him.
I also love how Sam and Joe thought it didn’t make it in before the buzzer until they saw the replay yet Tyson Nash knew right away it was a goal.
That said back to being only a Rangers fan and wow, just no words for that finish. I do love how Joe kept insisting it was Dubinsky. I love Dubi but he never would’ve made that shot. There are two players on the team that could’ve done it – Richards and Callahan. And since Callahan was clearly behind the net, he obviously didn’t take the shot.
Also notice the play by Martin Biron that got ignored by everyone due to the outcome. If Henrik was in net, that goal never would’ve happened because the puck never would’ve gotten back to the Coyotes zone.
Either way I, like so many Rangers fans, just couldn’t believe what I just witnessed. I’m pretty sure it was at that moment we all agreed the Richards signing was a good one. It also got the Rangers back in the win column after a brief two game losing streak as they headed to New Jersey for their first game of the season against the Devils. Why it took until the middle of December for the Rangers and Devils to play each other, I have no idea. And before you ask, no this wasn’t the one everyone remembers. Although this one did start with a fight cause why wouldn’t it?