The Maven's Haven

  • Thursday, January 24, 2013

    Stan Fischler Previews Rangers vs. Flyers

    RANGERS RECORD: 1-2-0 (2 PTS)
    THEME: UP, UP AND AWAY PLUS: Marian Gaborik hot after hat trick against Boston. Ryan Callahan leading more than ever; finished with nine hits against Boston and four blocked shots. Getting the first pair of points relieves a lot of pressure; media and otherwise. Top line of Gaborik, Brad Richards and Rick Nash was dominant; borderline scary. MINUS: The power play,...
  • Monday, January 14, 2013

    Let's Get to the Hockey!

    For many NHL-less months, I was constantly reminded of a song from the 1963 English musical about World War I, "Oh, What A Lovely War."  The tune in question opened as follows: "When this lousy war is over, oh, how happy I will be." And that's precisely how I felt about the seemingly endless CBA Battle. Amen! The hockey war is over and I -- along with millions of fans, media types and other onlookers...
  • Wednesday, December 26, 2012

    Greatest Rivalries: Rangers Win on Long Island for First Time Since 1989

    If ever the bromide "Turnabout is fair play" had relevance to a hockey rivalry it was amply demonstrated by the annual war game on ice played by the Rangers and Islanders between the months of March 1993 and April 1994. And if a single game could crystallize the enmity that stirred adrenaline between Manhattan and Uniondale, it took place at Nassau Veteran's Memorial Coliseum on March 5, 1994.
  • Thursday, December 20, 2012

    Greatest Rivalries: Islanders Win, Rangers Miss Playoffs, Turgeon Scores 50th Goal in 1993

    Rangers-Islanders, April 2, 1993, was extra-special for a lot of reasons: 1. A playoff berth was at stake: 2.The team with the NHL's best record a year earlier was up against an upstart club that didn't even make the playoffs in the previous season; and 3. The fallout from a mid-season Rangers coach-firing still smoldered among Blueshirts fans.

    In retrospect, events leading up to that dynamic...
  • Monday, December 17, 2012

    Greatest Rivalries: Rangers & Devils Meet in Playoffs for the First Time

    To best understand and appreciate the Rangers’ playoff series victory over New Jersey in the Spring of 1992, one must turn back the calendar to the Autumn of 1991; specifically Oct. 5 The fallout from one of the most arresting trades in NHL history still was reverberating around the hockey world all because THE Captain, Mark Messier, had just become a Ranger. At the time, Messier was regarded as the best team-leader in...
  • Friday, December 14, 2012

    Greatest Rivalries: Gartner's Hat Trick Eliminates Isles

    Only on the rarest of occasions will a single playoff-game result not only in long-term effects on both hockey clubs but actually inspire one team's moves -- in this case, the Rangers -- that would eventually lead it to win a Stanley Cup. It wasn't evident at the time but the Rangers ‘6-5 postseason victory over the Islanders on April 13, 1990 did more than merely provide the Blueshirts with their...
  • Thursday, November 29, 2012

    Greatest Rivalries: Rangers-Devils 1994 Game 7 - Matteau, Matteau, Matteau

    “This will be the biggest game in these two franchises’ history, going back at least 50 years. Buckle up!” –Peter McNab – Devils TV analyst for SportsChannel Well, some would call it not only the greatest game, but the greatest game of the NHL’s greatest series ever. That’s what Associated Press executive hockey editor Tim Sullivan labeled the series and its finale. Not only that, but Sullivan...
  • Wednesday, November 21, 2012

    Rangers-Devils: The Guarantee

    Never in the course of hockey history has a team owed so much to one player and his one utterance -- “I guarantee a victory”. Mark Messier was THE man and the Rangers team he captained in the 1993-94 season was teetering on the brink of playoff-elimination prior to Game 6 of the Eastern Conference Semi-Final round. An upstart New Jersey Devils squad hardly was given a chance to defeat a team that...
  • Sunday, October 28, 2012

    What to Watch For With the Local Four

    BUFFALO: What a difference a year makes. In the Autumn of 2011, the Sabres looked so good forecasts had them finishing as high as fifth overall in the Eastern Conference. Having undergone a major character change -- a tougher, meaner team -- they impress critics enough to be considered for seventh overall which is better than missing the playoffs altogether as they did last Spring. What Buffalo will need...
  • Tuesday, September 25, 2012

    Hockey in the Holy Land

    How bizarre is this -- I travelled 6,000 miles to see my first hockey game of the season. And, of all places, it was in The Holy Land. Not that I was in Israel just to see a bunch of puck-chasers but -- hard as it may be to imagine -- I did see hockey played -- although on a level considerably below the NHL. While visiting my younger son, Simon, who lives in The Golan Heights with his family, he tipped...