Thursday, November 02, 2006

MSG: Could Happy Times Be Here Again? [J. Mark English]

You've got to have an ace in the hole. A little secret that nobody knows. Life is a gamble, a game we all play, but you need to save something for a rainy day. You've got to learn to play your cards right if you expect to win in life. Don't put it all on the line for just one roll. You've got to have an ace in the hole. - George Strait

The Rangers' up-and-down trend this season continued on Wednesday night, and this time the "up" was a lift of the highest order.
Coming off a frustrating loss in Los Angeles and facing the No. 1 team in the NHL's Western Conference, the Blueshirts refused to fold after falling behind 3-2 and rebounded for a dramatic overtime victory, thanks to captain Jaromir Jagr and goaltender Kevin Weekes, who had not played in more than two weeks.
Jagr's goal at 3:09 of overtime gave the Rangers a hard-fought 4-3 win and brought the Blueshirts back to the .500 mark at 6-6-0 on the season. Far more significantly, it gave the Rangers a 2-1 record through the first three games of their four-game Western road trip and sent a message to the rest of the league that despite some early-season disappointments, this team remains capable of beating anyone when it plays its game. - New York
Isiah Thomas and the Knicks got off to a good start, despite a rocky finish.
New York blew a 19-point, fourth-quarter lead Wednesday night before beating the Memphis Grizzlies 118-117 in triple-overtime.
"It feels good to get Isiah and the team started right,'' guard Jamal Crawford said.
"(But) we have to learn to finish. We had them down 19. We should have pushed it to 30.''
Thomas said the close call wasn't all his team's fault.
"It was nothing we did wrong,'' he said. "It was everything they did right. They were making shots and taking it to the rim.''
Thomas, who is also the team's president, became the coach in June to replace Larry Brown, and is under pressure to improve the team from its 23-59 record from a year ago.
Thomas said he saw good things in the Memphis game.
"We showed that we have great courage and fight, and we found a way to win,'' he said. "I have a lot of respect for our guys.'' - New York
Comments -
Last night was a real blast if your a fan of the two real teams that call Madison Square Garden home. Finally the network had some real games to cover besides MLS games or arena football. The network must have been beside themselves to have both teams win in exciting fashion.
Who were those boys playing in Memphis? For most of the game the Knicks were playing like...well, like a team! They were being unselfish...looking for the open man, taking select high percentage shots, crashing the boards, playing some actual defense.
And the Rangers. They actually are learning how to play defense. Please keep it up!
Hopefully the teams are finding their ace in the hole. If so, the hole in the midde of the city known as MSG, will be the site of fun this coming winter.