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Tortorella: Habs-Rangers game among worst I’ve been involved in

Feb 20, 2013, 10:47 AM EDT

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 19: Ryan McDonagh #27 of the New York Rangers battles with Lars Eller #81 of the Montreal Canadiens at Madison Square Garden on February 19, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Scott Levy/NHLI via Getty Images) Getty Images

Coach John Tortorella didn’t like the Montreal Canadiens’ play in their 3-1 victory over his New York Rangers, but he will grant them this much: They sucked less.

“I thought it was probably one of the worst hockey games I’ve ever been involved in,” Tortorella said in an ESPN report. “Both teams. But they were better than we were.”

The two teams didn’t manufacture many scoring chances early on, although that’s a given when squads combine for just eight shots on goal in the first period.

Montreal focused on waiting for and attempting to capitalize on errors in the Rangers’ transitions in a strategy that Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist thought was “boring,” but “smart.”

In turn, the Rangers attempted to, in captain Ryan Callahan‘s words, “be patient with it, get pucks in deep” and avoid turnovers. The Rangers ultimately fell short of that goal early in the third period, which resulted in 19-year-old forward Alex Galchenyuk netting the game-winning goal for Montreal.

“Just two bad teams playing and we were worse than they were,” Tortorella said in summary.

The Rangers were without Rick Nash and have been secretive with regards to his status. Who knows if he’ll play on Thursday, but either way, Tortorella will certainly be looking for more from his club.

  1. tfaltin - Feb 20, 2013 at 11:14 AM

    Yup. That game sucked. Rangers looked lost and had no spark without Nash, but it’s not like the Habs were impressive either. Brutal game to watch on TV, let alone pay a day’s salary to attend. The Rangers could use some Gordon Bombay style passing the egg drills, because they can’t seem to connect on a breakout to save their lives.

    • jkay1818 - Feb 20, 2013 at 11:35 AM

      you’re right, way too predictable, they do the same breakout over and over again. Wait by the end boards at the blue line, and it always seems to be gaborik over there. He is way too fast to not bring it up on a rush or be able to skate more.
      It wouldnt hurt them to can sullivan as their PP coach, expert. he is HORRID. brian leetch is always at msg, lives in the area and does the postgame, intermission with trautwig a ton of games. It would make sense to bring him on as a PP consultant or special teams coach.

  2. mclovinhockey - Feb 20, 2013 at 11:18 AM

    Meh the 3rd was fun.

  3. hockeywithdrawal - Feb 20, 2013 at 11:24 AM

    So the Habs are going to play like the Devils now?

    That will make for an interesting match-up between the Devils and the Habs. Snorz.

  4. mattybo - Feb 20, 2013 at 11:39 AM

    Brad Richards was a beast last year and this year has caused me to scream at my TV more than anyone. Predominately on PP, he just looks afraid to pull the trigger with no confidence at all. Torts playing him less and benching him during a shootout certainly doesnt help build it either =/

    • barkar942 - Feb 20, 2013 at 12:27 PM

      His benching was well deserved. How many turnovers at his own blue line? And last night being three feet from the blue line and taking the puck back in and turning it over? The only good solid effort I saw last night was Cally, and he just missed blocking the Montreal goal pass in front of the net.
      Perhaps the rumors of a buy out candidate aren’t sounding so crazy after all!

  5. philly4lyfe - Feb 20, 2013 at 12:02 PM

    torts should get an endorsement deal with Kleenex as much as he whines and complains about everything. his team sucked, their team sucked, that game sucked, the refs sucked. someone needs to call in the wambulance.

    • tfaltin - Feb 20, 2013 at 2:36 PM

      Since when is giving an honest assessment whining or a complaint?

  6. cweez2 - Feb 20, 2013 at 12:25 PM

    Boring? From the fans of a team that plays “blockey?”

  7. sportsfan69 - Feb 20, 2013 at 1:14 PM

    Brad Richards needs to watch J.Toews from the Blackhawks in regards to leading by example and playing to his contract. Lundqvist needs to play like he’s one of the best goaltenders in the league. His allowance for juicy rebounds and mental lapses have become way to common occurrence. The opposing teams are picking up on it. He’s not playing a full 60 minutes throughout the game. I hate to see what would happen to him if he played for Phoenix Coyotes. It would be embarrassing for him. Maybe, put your guitar away for a while, focus on your team and be the leader that you are. With the exception of couple games, it’s not been there.

  8. philly4lyfe - Feb 20, 2013 at 5:04 PM

    I wasnt just referring to this article. torts has a very long body of work in the whining department. see below for just one of many examples.

  9. philly4lyfe - Feb 20, 2013 at 5:05 PM

    also a classic. he should come out with his own whining greatest hits album.

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. P. Kane (1962)
  2. P. Kessel (1474)
  3. M. Richards (1278)
  4. N. Backstrom (1175)
  5. M. Giordano (1121)