FLIN FLON, MANITOBA – I think I wrote a column when I didn’t necessarily have to which is worse than forgetting you got a colonoscopy last week and getting another one this week. But that’s life in Mattville and here are some nuggets for you to gnaw on re: NY Rangers, NY Giants Fight Injury Bug, Jets Mail It In and Hot Stove Leftovers.
The New York Rangers seem to have found their form again after getting pasted by Tall Matt’s Brooklyn Islanders. They took on the Winnipeg Jets and played pretty well early only to surrender a lead in the second period. The Blueshirts scored the winner on a power play with a minute left in the third period. It was a good win for the Rangers, but they were lucky on the night. The Jets (the hockey ones, not the minor league NFL team) hit the iron a few times during the game. Now the Rangers head to Chicago with a more injury concerns, as Rick Nash is out with a groin injury. It doesn’t look serious but it will keep Nash out of the lineup for tonight’s Original Six clash in Chicago. Matt Puempel was also injured on Tuesday night, suffering a concussion after being bludgeoned by Brock Nelson.
This leaves New York very short on offence (Canadian spelling). Nash and Puempel join forwards Mika Zibanejad and Pavel Buchnevich on the injured list. They’ll have to tread water for the next few weeks until they can get healthy. And they still need defensive help, but it looks like Rangers GM Jeff Gorton will kick that can down the road until the forwards get healthy. They’re still a tough team to beat as they showed last night against the Jets, but they are missing a lot of firepower. Lets hope they can get healthy soon.
Now to the Gridiron…
The other Jets in sports, the ones that call the Meadowlands home, are in for a tough run-in to the end of the season. From the looks of their Monday Night Massacre at the hands of the Colts, the Jets already think the season is over. They’re playing for pride the rest of the way but it doesn’t look like there’s much pride to play for. The Jets’ roommates still have a lot to play for.
The Giants come into this weekend’s divisional matchup with the Dallas Cowboys needing a win to keep their vanishing hopes of catching the ‘Boys for the division title alive. But Big Blue’s offense has struggled and the defense is banged up with JPP done for the season. The Giants will be lucky to win more than one of their remaining four games. That one win should be good enough to seal up a Wild Card berth and get the Giants a first round beat-down in the playoffs.
Now for those Hot Stove Leftovers…
With the baseball season only four months away the Yankees are gearing up. They signed Aroldis Chapman to a five year deal worth $86 million. It’s a lot of money for a closer, but it bolsters the back end of the Yankee bullpen. With the Baby Bombers set to play from the start of the season, the Yankees should improve on their 2016 season. The Red Sox are still favorites to win the division but the Yankees will push the Sox and should snag a Wild Card slot.
The Red Sox have made the biggest spash in this offseason so far acquiring Chris Sale from the Chicago White Sox for a couple of fungos, a bucket of gently used batting practice baseballs, and a bullpen cart shaped like a baseball. With that the Red Sox should cruise to the AL East title.
That’s it for me today. Come back tomorrow for Grinding Ax Walter Hynes and look out for those MtM Holiday Party invites. I hear this year the party will be at Delmonico’s.