Glen Sather 1

The More Things Change…

by Jess Rubenstein

After watching what the Rangers passed off as an effort in the game against the Devils, I wanted to wait to see what my pal Slats was going to say about his team before writing. You see over the last week or so I have been trying to come up with a piece that showed how no matter what those involved with the Rangers wanted to claim about how things were so different this season that they really weren’t.

The Rangers themselves actually provided the evidence thanks to the way they played against the Devils on Saturday afternoon. A 5-0 butt kicking that could have been a lot worse if the Devils actually had a real offense. In many ways I have to ask all of you what exactly is the difference between the Rangers losing 5-0 to the Devils and the Pens losing 9-0 to the Lightning? Simple in the defense of the Pens their effort wasn’t lacking just their level of talent. You can’t say the same thing for the Rangers.

For the Rangers it was basically one of those games that have just about become a trademark of the Slat’s era. It was a listless, effortless, heartless, no discipline and disgusting no-show game from the Rangers that we have seen way too many times over the last 4 seasons under the Slats era. It was a game that for all intents and purposes was over in 70 seconds leaving the other 58 minutes and 50 seconds for the Devils to show just how far the divide is between the 2 franchises.

This is supposed to be a rivalry but it really isn’t given that the Devils have only lost 1 regulation game to the Rangers since 1997 (21-1-12-1 winless in their last 10 straight games). That isn’t a rivalry it is more like those early season college basketball matchups you see where the big name Division 1 teams fatten their records against a Division 2 or 3 team. Slats has told anyone who will listen that he would love to model the Rangers after the Devils but it seems that he is either using the wrong model or doesn’t understand the instructions on how to build said model.

If anything the Rangers are the Anti-Devils when it comes to the way the franchise is run and we don’t have to rehash all the differences because all that will do is show just how badly Slats has run the Rangers and frustrate us fans that much more. The Rangers simply don’t play as a team they are a bunch of well paid individuals who have been assembled in the hope of somehow becoming a team that hasn’t worked and never will work. The problem is the powers that be (the Dolans) aren’t smart enough to see it and change things.

After the loss Slats was quoted as saying “It was a good old-fashioned beating that they gave us,” Sather said. “We didn’t have a lot of guys show up today.” Yet one has to ask but isn’t this the year of accountability? Isn’t this the year that the system was put into place? So where is the accountability or better yet does anyone know what system the Rangers are using? If so please share that knowledge not only with your fellow Ranger fans but also with the players themselves as it appears they have no idea what it is either.

There is no longer any excuse for a team not to be prepared to play that is acceptable. The players, coaching staff and even the ownership have been preaching how this year was going to be different but yet all the signs are there that say OH NO IT’S NOT. The Rangers had 2 full days to prepare for the Devil game and yet they still by Slat’s own admission didn’t have players show up to play. WHY and when will these kinds of efforts stop?

After a somewhat promising start the Rangers have now gone 1-3-0-1 in their last 5 games. In each of the regulation losses the Rangers have given up 5 goals or more. Got to ask just what happened to the defensive system that was put into place during the preseason? This Devil game was the start of a 4 game road trip that wasn’t going to be easy to begin with. The loss to the Devils just makes the rest of us wonder if it is possible that come the 23rd when they return home to face the Senators that the team will be on a 4 game losing streak?

The song remains the same when it comes to the poor no-show efforts, the excuses given by the team and coaching staff, the lack of anyone being held accountable for their play. Yet we fans wonder what it is going to take for someone anyone involved with the Rangers to take a stand.

We wonder just when the promises and threats will stop being hollow. Earlier this week many a fan was teased into believing that Poti was going to be a healthy scratch but you should have known better to believe that was actually going to happen. The supposed upper core of the Rangers has yet to be held accountable and it won’t happen until it is way too late for it to have any real effect on the team.

I don’t know about the rest of you but I am more than ready to change songs.

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