The Maven's Haven

  • 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.
    Or,...
  • 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...
  • Thursday, September 20, 2012

    Disagreeing With the Hockey Bible

    Being the unofficial "Bible" of its sport, The Hockey News is to be taken seriously; which I do, believe me, I do.
    But that doesn't mean that The Maven and The Hockey Bible have to agree all the time; especially when the time is now.
    To be specific, I will now take issue with THN's listing of the National Hockey League's best players just released in its annual Yearbook.
    For starters, The Hockey...
  • Monday, September 17, 2012

    Captain Considerations & Goaltending Questions

    • Considering his super-positive impact on the Rangers, Ryan Callahan spent the early part of his career egregiously overlooked by just about everyone but his Rochester-based agent, Steve Bartlett. In a Hockey News Yearbook "Captains America" feature, author Ken Campbell points out that Callahan actually would have been bypassed in the 2001 Ontario Hockey League Draft were it not for Bartlett. The rep lobbied then...