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Rupp first career hat trick latest humiliation

December 1, 2009   ·     ·   Jump to comments

The unlikeliest Pen victimized the Rangers for a hat trick. In the Garden rematch, ex-Devil Mike Rupp stole the show, scoring not once. Not twice. But three times to stake the Pens to a 5-2 road win, sweeping the home-and-home series.

Sometimes, there are things you just cant explain. For disgruntled Ranger fans who witnessed this remarkable feat along with waste Donald Brashear playing second line with Chris Drury and Ryan Callahan, it was insult to injury. Oh. Weve always liked Rupper and he was available over the summer but while John Tortorella let Colton Orr walk to Toronto and sign the washed up stiff, the Penguins wound up with a bargain, inking Rupp to a multi-year worth an average of 825 K. Not bad for an in prime 29 year-old whos carved a niche. Did we mention Brashear is signed for two at $1.4 per? Ugh. Well, at least my late Thai dinner didnt come up yet. And man, was it good.

Anyway, despite the final score, it wasnt indicative as the Rangers actually competed. Sure. Marian Gaborik tallied twice for his league-leading 20th and 21st. But with under 10 minutes to go, it was anyones game. And while the refs/linesmen were God awful ignoring many Pen infractions while inventing two bogus ones on us (Brashear phantom hook, Dan Girardi boarding when he hit Rupp from side by far ref 40 feet away!!!!!), that wasnt why they lost.

It was because our overrated goalie again shit the bed, allowing Rupp to blow one past the weak glove deflating MSG with the exception of many Pen fans, who had to love what they saw. When you can turn Michael Rupp into Sid The Kid or Geno, somethings very wrong. I know we beat it to death in this space but when oh when will Mr. GQ fix the glove and come out and challenge like Marc-Andre Fleury did, making two large stops with the game in the balance? Its not that I dislike Henrik Lundqvist. Hes done some good things here backstopping the club to four postseasons and a pair of second rounds while conducting himself professionally- a word thats not in Tiger Woods dictionary. Speaking of which, while Tiger might be arrogant, the man aint one of the greatest athletes weve seen for nothing. So while he might have issues at home with a gem of a wife, he can at least back it up on the golf course. To be considered the best, you have to deliver when it matters most. Unfortunately, time and time again this season, Lundqvist has failed to hold up his end of the bargain.

Save us the built in excuses that the D is suspect and that Artie Anisimov lost an edge which allowed the Pens to take full advantage. Even our home ice is against us. I could care less what defenseman and our forwards didnt do to allow a glorified fourth liner like Rupp to come in untouched. Thats one you ask your so-called franchise goalie to stop. No ifs, ands or buts about it. More disturbing was the Pens insurance marker that came off a faceoff. Save me the whole, Well, Sidney Crosby got a piece of Mark Eatons shot. That was one of the softest goals Lundqvist has ever permitted. Never has he looked smaller. While he might enjoy the night life our city has to offer, this man has some serious soul searching to do. He needs to ask himself does he want to be great or just what Anthony proclaimed.

The most overrated goalie since Vanbiesbrouck.

I liked Beezer growing up but he was never in the same category as Mike Richter. I hate to say it but I could care less if Henrik beats Richter in wins, shutouts, etc. Hes not better than No.35. Right now, hes a good netminder with holes in his game. He cant play the puck, has no glove and also stinks on breakaways because hes become way too passive. Has all of it gone straight to his head? The models. The endorsements. The Garden Of Dreams. The Good Life. I dont know. But I get the feeling Lundqvist is satisfied. Ask the opposite No.30 across the Hudson the same question and well bet, youll get a resounding NO. Thats despite accomplishing anything and everything in the sport.

Itd be very easy to chalk this one up to not being as physically gifted as the mighty Pens, whose captain dominated again- picking high glove via a backhand which Lundqvist also shouldve had. Were not going to do it because his teammates were in position to win. And for his big stop on Jordan Staal shorthanded and another with the club trailing, heres a question my Dad wondered along with most of our section except the idiot wearing a Mario Lemieux jersey, who even cheered the weak calls his team got. When does Lundqvist start making those kinda momentum stops with it all knotted? Fleury did twice, coming out aggressively to deny our guys from taking a lead. God forbid our overpaid elite goalie did.

When Crosby got credit for his second of the night with four and change left, I didnt bother staying. What was the point? When my brother informed me Rupp hit the empty net for a trick, increasing his career best in goals to eight, I was like, It figures. Its so easy to get upset when your team loses. But this one is on the goalie, who too often has played like a sieve. As if to prove a point, the following excerpt from a convo that took place as I was filing out downstairs:

I think we need another goalie. He was just awful. He allowed three bad goals. Maybe its time to find someone else.

As if this franchise didnt have enough problems. And theres this also. When Lundqvist made a routine stop down 2-3, some sarcastic cheers could be heard. Not too loud but just noticeable enough to pick up. More fans are starting to notice that just maybe Lundqvist isnt the goalie for this teams future. But then, who the heck is? Chad Johnsons been real steady for Hartford. But what else is there? Goalies take a while to develop. Kinda wish theyd held onto Al Montoya instead of ruining him. Something the Rangers are very good at.

Btw, hows Nigel Dawes doing these days in Alberta? Couldnt use him now. Even Jamie Lundmark would be an upgrade with our popgun offense. All this makes me feel for Gaborik, who if he was on a halfway decent team, would be our runaway choice for the Hart. Imagine how many goals The Big Ticket might have playing around better talent. He signed with us. It all couldve been different if Alexei Cherepanov was alive. I dont think this teams that far away either. Especially with the progress were seeing from our young blueline with Bobby Sanguinetti looking ready. Tort finally got around to taking our suggestions on the D pairs putting Michal Rozsival with Marc Staal while sticking Girardi with Mike Del Zotto while Sangs worked with Matt Gilroy. Give it some time. Though it says here Wade Redden is missed. I like what I see from Sanguinetti. Now, we need to see what he can do on the power play and sit out Rozy.

What the organization should do is sacrifice the year. I know its got no chance of happening because the Easts not that good, meaning theyll probably hang around. But whats the point? Itd be another one and done. Lets lose more games and bring up the kids. We really need to bottom out and get a high lottery pick. It would be best for the future. With kids like Evgeny Grachev, Derek Stepan, Ryan Bourque, Chris Kreider, Carl Hagelin, Roman Horak, Ethan Werek, Tomas Kundratek and Ryan McDonagh, the whole look of this teams going to dramatically change. Give it 2-3 years. If only we knew what to expect from the goalie.

BONY 3 Stars:

3rd Star-Sidney Crosby, Pit (2 goals, assist, 3 SOG, takeaway, 9-10 draws, +2 in 24:10)

2nd Star-Marian Gaborik, NYR (2 goals-league leading 20th, 21st, game high 7 SOG, takeaway in 22:23)

1st Star-Mike Rupp, Pit (1st career hat trick-6, 7, 8, 5 SOG, 4 hits, +3 in 13:12)

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