Rangers Notebook: N.Y. coach unhappy with late penalty
Share with others:
Tom Renney wasn't suggesting that the New York Rangers, even with a three-goal lead, were scared of the Penguins.
But the coach did see something short of a killer instinct from his team.
"One thing that we do have is a pretty good grasp of the obvious," Renney said after the Penguins claimed a 5-4 win in Game 1 of the teams' second-round playoff series.
"Pittsburgh isn't where they are because they're a poor team and they don't have an ability to bounce back, and we were certainly aware of that -- and maybe almost to a fault."
The Penguins came back with four unanswered goals, the Rangers tied it again, 4-4, but Sidney Crosby's slap shot on a power play with 1:41 left in regulation went off teammate Evgeni Malkin's skate and past New York goaltender Henrik Lundqvist.
The fact that the winner came with his team shorthanded didn't thrill Renney, in no small part because Crosby drew an interference penalty from the Rangers' Marty Straka.
Renney, who indicated before the series started that he was wary of Crosby drawing penalties, perhaps when they aren't deserved, was asked twice about that one.
At first, he stayed silent.
"That's your answer," he said.
Later, he asked, "Did you see it? Draw your own conclusions."
Ruutu, Jagr have a history
One Penguins player knows what it's like to catch Rangers captain Jaromir Jagr with his head down.
Agitator Jarkko Ruutu, playing for Finland in the 2006 Olympics in Turin, Italy, lined up Jagr and left him crumpled on the ice during a 4-2, early-round win against the Czech Republic. It has been called a dirty hit, but Ruutu insisted otherwise.
Jagr was along the halfboards with the puck in his skates and a Finnish player checking him from behind.
"He tried to stick-handle, and I saw the situation," Ruutu said. "He wasn't ready to take a hit. I just finished my check. It was right off the side. A lot of people say it was from behind, but it wasn't from behind.
"I think that changed the game, and we won the game."
Jagr can expect the same thing if he finds himself in a similar situation during this series.
"He's a great player, but that's why you have to play him really hard and don't give him any room," said Ruutu.
Ruutu said he doesn't really know Jagr personally.
"I'm sure he knows me," he said.
Orr in, Hollweg out
The Rangers made one lineup change from their last game against New Jersey in the first round, replacing winger Ryan Hollweg with Colton Orr on the fourth line. Orr missed the past 10 games, including the five-game, first-round series with New Jersey, because of a broken foot.
"It's his time," Renney said of Orr, who led the team during the regular season with 159 penalty minutes. "This is a big, strong team, maybe a little bigger than New Jersey. We feel that Colton can get in on the forecheck and be a presence. We probably gain a little bit by his size."
Don't worry about it
Jagr was told that the South Hills house he rents to Penguins winger and fellow Czech Petr Sykora is infested with ants, according to Sykora.
"He can do some work," Jagr said, with a grin.
"No, he's a good guy. If he has some problems at the house, I've got to go fix it."
Sykora said he probably wouldn't bother Jagr with it during the playoffs.
First Published April 26, 2008 12:00 am