Tuesday, March 5, 2013

A Terrible Tuesday

Save yourself some pain if you don't want to get depressed over the performances of the New York Ranger and New York Islander prospects and come back tomorrow. Really can't complain too much as the "stinker" sign has hardly been used this season.

The naysayers should be out in full force after the Saskatoon Blades put to end any kind of winning streak after a 9-5 spanking from the Calgary Hitmen. The first game for Josh Nicholls (UFA 2013) as an official Ranger prospect did not go as one might had hoped for Nicholls and linemate Shane McColgan (NYR 2011 5th).

Nicholls at least put on a respectable showing for himself with a 1-1-2 evening but when your team gives up 5 in the first period, there isn't much to be happy about. This game was a nightmare from the opening puck drop as Calgary needed all of 17 seconds to take a 1-0 lead then another 3:20 to go up 2 and they really were not threatened by Saskatoon.

Nicholls recorded his 42nd goal of the season at 12:37 but Calgary would score 2 more 59 seconds apart to make it 4-1 and by the time the period had ended it was 5-2. The teams would swap goals in the 2nd period and Nicholls would pick up a primary assist on a power play goal in the 3rd to make it a 2 goal game at 7-5.

Calgary responded 45 seconds later and that really was it for the 19 straight games with a point streak for the Blades. Shane McColgan had a terrible night going scoreless and a -3 but while not making excuses you had to figure after a long winning streak that the Blades were due for a stinker.

So now that they are winless in 2 we will see how strongly the Blades finish off the season.

Samuel Noreau (NYR 2011 5th) and his Baie-Comeau Drakkar fell back into old habits as they dropped a 2-1 decision to Patrick Roy's Quebec Remparts. Noreau was a -1 on 1 shot with no hits and that kind of inactive game is not going to win many playoff games.

The Drakkar hold a 2 point lead over Rimouski for 2nd place in the QMJHL but the Drakkar have also played 2 more games than Rimouski. The team that finishes 2nd gets to play the 15th seeded team while in this case, the team that finishes 4th gets to face the 13th seeded team.

Last year the Drakkar were the 13th seeded team and they upset the 4th seeded Victoriaville Tigre in a 4 game sweep. Hope they remember that when they look at the standings tomorrow.

Andrey Pedan (NYI 2011 3rd) and his Guelph Storm have basically handed the 4th seed in the OHL's Western Conference to the Kitchener Rangers after the Rangers defeated the Storm 6-4. Where to start in describing this mess?

How about going 1 for 9 on your power plays like the Storm did? Or perhaps giving up 3 power play goals on 6 chances like the Storm did? Or starting the parade to the penalty box just 2:38 into the game which led to the Ranger's first goal of the game at 3:06?

Then it didn't help that the Rangers would make it 2-0 on a goal just 1:16 later and while the Storm would score to cut the lead to 2-1; Pedan would take a high sticking penalty which on a penalty kill giving the Rangers a 2 man advantage that they would score on to make it 3-1.

The Rangers would build their lead up to 5-1 in the 3rd period thanks to a shorthanded goal and then it would be the Ranger's turn to try to give away the game. The Storm would 3 unanswered including Pedan's 13th goal of the season to close to within 5-4 but that was as close as they would get.

The loss drops the Storm 5 points behind the Rangers even though they had a game in hand on the Rangers. Pedan set a new high in points with his 41st (13-28-41) but since he took a penalty while killing a power play and was a -2 then don't think he has a lot to celebrate.

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