he just looked so slow. His hands looked slow (like when he was in front of the net, the puck came for a re-direction, and while shots do go wide, he just seemed slow in his reflexes to deflect the shot; and on his wrap-around, he seemed very slow at getting around there). Then you watch Nylander do what he's supposed to do - make a couple nice passes, and his linemates had trouble with them. They ended up with a goal, which was great, but there were other chances in which they clearly didn't seem up to the task with Nylander. Sounds as though Renney may've done this for one game - Sykora's familiarity with Rucchin, and the size of the Flames up front. I think he'll eventually flip because Renney's smart (and Rucchin has looked good between those two in the past). He needs to turn that into a true checking line.
Great comeback win against a very good team. Some thoughts:
- Although Sykora certainly was lucky the thing is that Petr has always been a very heady player. Thats what seperates him from alot of other guys. He will try things that other guys don't even think to do. On his goal it looked like to me that he was trying to bank the puck off of the goalie. If you look at the replay Kiprusoff isn't hugging the post and left some room. Looks like he just figured I'll throw the puck in the crease and see what happens. Mark my words, this guy is going to have a monster 2nd half for this team. BTW in the trade thread I called for a goal in his first game as a Ranger.
- Henke continues to show why he is THE MAN! Might as well just give him one of the 3 Stars of the game at the opening face off. He's making a habit outta of it anyway.
- Jagr is simply amazing. The way he gets guys to run around and chase him in the offensive zone is pure magic.
- Neimo played another inspired game. As Edge stated he's rediscovered the sandpaper component to his game. Couldn't come at a better time. We've got a really tough stretch the rest of the month and need everyone playing their best.
- Tytin has really picked up his game the last few weeks.
Don't get me wrong, I think Sykora played really well, but there were times where he could've chased someone down and forechecked a bit harder (like Straka usually does). He didn't have as much jump as Straka, Jagr, and Rucinsky had but then again, Sykora hasn't been playing that much due to the constant scratches in Anaheim. Sykora is only going to get better as the season goes on so I'm really excited about what he can bring to this team!
What can I say about Ward...the guy works his *** off on every shift and those are the type of players I like to see on any team I'm a fan of. Sykora said it himself in that interview after the win. I can't quote him exactly because he's a bit hard to understand but it was something along the lines of: "There's a good mixture here. 2 scoring lines and the other lines work really hard, bangin hockey!"
Even Renney said in the post game interview that Sykora was still a bit jetlagged. I noticed he was not looking as quick but it's understandable.
I have no problems with last nights game besides the Power play not looking too sharp, but the comeback from two down more than makes up for it.
Correct me if im wrong..but was it just me or did Strudwick and Poti get the award for the worst defense pairing yesterday night? Struds usually has a solid game but I don't think yesterday was one of them. Poti pintched a few times in the first and it lead to 2 on 1's and 3 on 1's (thankfully one was offside).