Rangers-Blues in Review

In my go time post last night, I forgot to delete a paragraph about not doing the review myself that I had copied and pasted from my previous go time post. Clearly, this is a half-assed venture.

  1. How about the way this team plays? The transition is so fast, they forced more odd man rushes than I’ve ever seen the Blues give up under Ken Hitchcock. It’s really incredible. Wicky must hate it.
  2. That said, do not get used to this. They are scoring at an historic pace; 4 goals per game. It will not last.  In fact, for them to regress to the mean, the correction will have to be significant.  A lot of scoring on the rush, but what happens if those opportunities aren’t there? Can they grind and cycle to “build” goals? Enjoy it while it lasts, but know that the offense will dry up a bit at some point. The same goes for the PP.
  3. Case in point is Jimmy Vesey. Sure, he could maintain his pace, but it’s far more likely that he slows, either just as a function of his PDO dropping from an insane 106.45 (before last night’s game, now probably over 107), or because he hits the rookie wall.  Don’t forget that just last year, Oscar Lindberg started his season 7-5-12 through his first 15 games before going only 6-10-16 over his final 53, including overlapping stretches of 22 games without a goal and 1 goal in 35 games.
  4. The thing that I like about Vesey is that he’s doing things besides putting the puck in the net. Good things that lead to the puck ending up in the net.  Case in point were the third and fifth goals of the game (more on them below). His line has been so good, you almost forget that Stepan still does not have a goal on the season.  But make no mistake about it: that line has been fantastic, especially Vesey and Nash, who looks better now than he did at any point last season.
  5. Then again, Stepan will start to score some goals at some point, and Zibanejad, who hit another post, will get off the schneid as well. So maybe the inevitable decline will be tempered a bit.
  6. Ryan McDonagh has been tremendous this season, particularly on the offensive side of the puck. First period, Rangers turn it over in the offensive zone, Pietrangelo starts to carry it out, and McDonagh dispossesses him with a great poke check at the blueline, then finds Kreider down low who hits Girardi coming down from the slot.  Girardi’s shot takes a deflection off of a Tarasenko’s stick and the bouncing puck beats Allen, 1-0.
  7. Rangers PP gets some great puck movement, going high-low-high-low between McDonagh, Vesey, Skjei, and Stepan, completely annihilating the Blues’ PK shape in the process, particularly the last pass from Skjei to Stepan. Stepan, with the puck at the side of the goal, holds it for a second while Bouwmeester snow-Dangelardis past, to find Vesey in the slot, 2-0.
  8. Second period, former future, but still potentially future Ranger Kevin Shattenkirk attempts a 100 ft pass from behind his own goal to the red line that Vesey reads perfectly and picks off, leading the Rangers in on what is essentially a 3 on 1 since Shattenkirk starts from behind the goal. Shattenkirk actually makes the correct read to go with Nash, forcing Nash to go a bit wide on his shooting angle and Allen makes the save. But Nash stays with the puck behind the goal and then banks it in off of Allen, 3-0.
  9. The second PP goal featured a pass that I’ve seen a few times this season. The puck ends up in front on a Rangers stick, and instead of putting it right back on goal, the player (Kreider in this case) makes a small pass across the goal for a slam dunk (Zuccarello in this case), 4-0.
  10. That was the end of Jake Allen. That he played tells me that the Blues have not done their homework.  If they had gone with a backup goaltender, as they did earlier this season with Hutton, it would have been a shutout.
  11. Speaking of goaltending, now is as good as time as any to point out the Lundqvist was fabulous. A couple of moments that stand out were the amazing glove save on Fabbri in the first period and the handling of a knuckling, dipping shot by Yakupov in the second period, a save on a Parayko (!) breakaway, and a Berglund slapshot in the third.  It wasn’t just that he saved the Yakupov shot, he steered it with his blocker into an area that he wanted to.  When Lundqvist is at his best, he eliminates second chances, either by trapping the puck or by controlling where the rebound goes.  A very good sign if he keeps his play like this.
  12. A centering pass from Berglund goes all the way through the front of the net and takes a good knock-hockey bounce off the corner up towards Vesey, who had the presence to stay on the ice rather than change. Vesey leads a 3 on 1 rush up the ice with Miller and Hayes. Pietrangelo was the Blues defenseman caught up ice.  The pass to Miller is off a bit, but Miller makes a tremendous play with his skates to get control and slide it over to Hayes for the finish (a great shot), 5-0.
  13. The second period ended with some chippiness, but Brady Skjei kept his cool enough to not take a penalty. Smart. Wicky must have hated it.
  14. All this time and I have barely mentioned Kreider. He hasn’t missed a beat from his five game absence.  This seriously could be the year of the Kreider breakout. Two assists and hit the post on the power play Skjei drew from not retaliating at the end of the second.  He’s even playing a better two-way game.
  15. Third period was less impressive. A lot of punting on first down that we saw last year.  No surprise that the Rangers were outshot 10-5 at even strength in the third period, including 5-1 in the last 10 minutes of the game.
  16. I said before the game that I would switch Buchnevich and Grabner quickly if either of them struggled with these line combinations. I thought both were not particularly good, so I would switch them back.

My Three Rangers Stars:

  1. Henrik Lundqvist
  2. Jimmy Vesey
  3. Ryan McDonagh

Your Three Rangers Stars (sort of):

  1. Henrik Lundqvist
  2. Jimmy Vesey
  3. Chris Kreider
Advertisements

248 thoughts on “Rangers-Blues in Review”

  1. Thanks for the Review Doodie.

    Our fine fine NHL officials missed what should have been a penalty shot when Schwartz(?) closed his hand on the puck in the crease.

    IMHO Skjei is a keeper. I wouldn’t trade him just because he’s a lefty. IMHO, he will eventually be riding shotgun with McDonough.

    Anybody missing Yandle on the PP? How about his cap hit?

    Hats off to Beukeboom and AV because Miller, Kreider, Zucc and (despite the occasional Kostka) Hayes, are playing solid defensively. Many of us railed about the defensive scheme and PK all summer and it’s been so much better.

    Like

  2. Nice review Doodie! It was my wife’s birthday yesterday so I didn’t get a chance to track the game. I have the replay DVR’d on the NHL Network looking forward to watching it when I get home from work. I agree Doodie with #2 it will be interesting to see how they handle it when things tighten up. But yeah right now it’s fun to watch!

    Like

  3. Good morning, boneheads!
    Great review, Doodie. I’m amazed you’re finding time to do this, work full time, and spend time with your young family. Honestly, I wouldn’t be able to do this.

    Like

  4. As for the game, stay positive, Doodie. Of course they won’t be able to score at the same rate. And of course teams will adapt and negate some of their rushes.
    But this is how they’re built. So they will get enough opportunities when their opponents make mistakes. Pittsburgh ran through the league with that style last year. Secondly, they have enough players who can retrieve pucks by grinding it out when need to. Kreider, Nash, Miiler, Vesey, and even Buchnevich showed some of that skill. Their defense is more active than usual.
    But also this- last two high scoring games. They didn’t have to score 6 and 5 goals respectively. 2 and 1 would’ve sufficed. They still have Hank as you mentioned.

    Like

  5. Couple of more things. The PP is looking deadly even when it doesn’t score. You want to talk about deterrent? If this continues at some reasonable rate, I’m sure coaches will be telling their players:” Do not take penalties ”
    The other thing is passing. Looks is like the whole team worked on it collectively over the summer. Fran would be very impressed.
    Speaking of passing. Skjei impressed with his passing skill. Two games in a row he makes long, diagonal passes in the O-zone that turn out to be deadly for the opposition.

    Like

  6. The Rangers would be insane to try playing dump, chase, point-shot, screen, clog-hockey. Their forecheck is good, mostly due to their stick skills and quick puck movement, but what is terrifying the opposition and defanging the opposing forecheck is their relentless puck movement and speed. It’s not only fun to watch, it’s nearly impossible to defend. Other teams would love it if the Rangers reverted to old-style hockey. Here’s hoping AV has the courage of his convictions when the team hits its first bump.

    Like

  7. Nice write up Doodie, thanks.
    I think the most important part of the night was the kind of performance they needed from Lundqvist was finally there. This is why balance is so important on a good team as the season goes on. Some nights the goalie is the reason you win some nights you grind it out some nights you run and gun in order to win.
    Everyone is buying in right now and everyone’s skating w confidence. The D is still my
    Main concern. I realized pretty quickly last night that If Mac didn’t come back, the D would be pretty scary looking. Hope he doesn’t miss time this year.

    Like

  8. And kudos on calling out the Wickster. Spent last night grumbling about Stepan and Skeji in the midst of a blow out 😉
    Nieves and Glass and Mcilrath I tell you!
    (Love ya Wick lol)

    Like

  9. McDonagh, Kreider, Miller, Hayes, and Vesey have been absolutely electric this season. Those players in addition to Staal and Girardi appear to be on some sort of “mission from God” this season. Like they all have something to prove as individuals and as members of this team. It’s extraordinary – Ive never seen this before on any Rangers team. No superstars, at least outside of Shampoo Boy, but the talent this team possesses is extremely deep and the style it plays is remarkable.

    While it last, I suggest we all enjoy it (I know I am), and forget about the usual Ranger gloom and doom (when will the other shoe fall off?).

    This is great. Full marks go to all the players, as well as AV and his staff, and also to Mr. Jeff Gorton.

    Like

  10. Nice points, Captain. I think we are vibin’ a bit this morning 🙂
    there will be slumps and there wi be injuries but that doesn’t mean they will have to change their entire system. This is what they want to be and everyone is benefiting from it right now. I wouldn’t downplay Vesey’s play as some are. He’s playing w/ two very good players and his hockey IQ is really something. Knows where to go knows where to have his stick. He may not score 25-30 goals this season but he won’t lack contributions if he keeps that up.
    Buchnevich on the other hand…AV needs to be real careful not to do to him what he did to Oscar and Hayes last year. This kid has the tools and the shot and can’t be banished to the fourth line or used like a spare part. He looked out of place and should get a look back w Zibanejad or Hayes.

    Liked by 1 person

  11. By the way- if anyone knows how to get in touch with Tommy G, CT blueshirt,or Latona make sure they know about this place!

    Like

  12. Thanks for the review Doodie.
    I think the Buke/Grabby experimental swap is over – normal positions resume next game. I also see nothing from Shatty that we need right now, that might change should our defense regress over the season but for now he was all risk/no reward. Skjei and McDonagh were the best 2 D on the ice

    Like

  13. James G

    I agree – I would not dismiss Vesey’s contributions either. He is showing himself to be an impact player who is having an impact. There’s a reason so many NHL teams competed hard for his services. He’s the real stuff.

    Like

  14. Holden is growing on me. Skjei gets better every game. They are deep up front, but need to put Grabner back on the 4th where he belongs. Do they need a true 4th line center? Or can they continue with Pirri as the guy?

    Like

  15. This O is so dominant. didn’t think Henk was great, nor did he have to be with this team controlling play. Might have been the easiest shut out of his career given his history here.
    .
    is there a better top 9 in the league? Just simply awesome, awesome. VC, Jay Tea, THE,etc, etc (USA, USA!)
    .
    Still think they need a top 4 RD to help in second season but if they keep rolling and get enough points, they can be more selective in the market.
    .
    Enjoy it folks, do not know if I have ever seen a stretch like this.

    Like

  16. One thing I don’t get…is Wicky being serious about not liking the way this team plays?
    He calls it “boring aasen scrimmage hockey”. Whaaa?

    Like

  17. BDL much like I said about the D potentially getting ugly if there’s an injury, we don’t need any centers injured either. Jooris is still weeks away. What do they do if say Step or Zibanejad miss time? There’s depth but it’s on the wing. One dirty hit or pop of a groin muscle and Boo Nieves is playing fourth line center with everyone moving up.
    Pirri isn’t a long term solution imo. He’s playing center to get the best 12 guys into the lineup every night.
    Still say Lindberg needs a conditioning assignment.

    Like

  18. Vesey is shooting percentage is currently at 33%. Obviously, that is unsustainable but this kid is so smart and so adept and putting himself in the right position to score that I think the goals will continue to come and his shooting percentage will likely be a lot higher than league average by the end of the year. I absolutely love this kid’s game.

    Like

  19. Nice review. This team is playing type of hockey that i don’t think I’ve seen them play before. Aggressive, scoring off the rush, PP goals, lots of skill! No more stiffs like Bran Bole, Tanner Glass or Prust… every line has skill now.

    Like

  20. Booby, I was originally going to go for 5 v 5 shooting percentage, as well as his on ice shooting percentage, but when I couldn’t find the on ice shooting percentage, I went for PDO instead.

    Like

  21. Not a fan of Zucc with Kreider, and Zibanijad. Kreider and Zibanijad move the puck, it’s not on there stick very long. It makes them and there speed effective. Zucc holds the puck, slows everything down. Negates the speed of his line mates.

    Like

  22. Oh You’d know Doodie if you read his stuff, Ranger Report. Highly opinionated, rough around the edges. Typical old school Rangers fan with a superiority complex 😉

    Like

  23. Not a bad note (#3) about Lindberg’s hot start last year. But if y’all remember, I don’t think a single one of those goals was a decent one. Deflections, flubs, goalies just missing it. Hey, they all count, and I’m not trying to delegitimize Lindberg’s streak last year. But Vesey’s goals…those were goal-scorer goals. I agree that the pace is unsustainable, but I think he’s a shoe-in for at least 20, even taking into account that he’ll hit the college wall at some point.

    Like

  24. Good grand morning all! Rangersreport2, why are you trying to take all the credit away from Doodie? And Booby, spit out my coffee on wicky’s concussions comment.

    This would be a sad sad season without you all. Haven’t watched a game alone since.

    I’m gonna reach out to CTBlueshirt….don’t have contacts for the others.

    Like

  25. BDL – agreed on Zucc. Not a great meshing of the styles. Vesey seems to work well with everybody, so I think he could slide in with Hayes and Miller, with Zucc playing with Step and Nash.

    Also – being that we have a 3rd line that could be a 2nd line on most teams, and a 4th line that could be made up of guys like Grabner, Lindberg, Jooris, and Fast…I think we’re finally skilled enough that a case COULD be made for adding some muscle down there. I’m not saying Tanner Glass or anything, but if we could identify a banger/rat who has enough skill not to embarrass himself out there, I wouldn’t hate trading Fast for him. Like if LA needed to make some cap space and was willing to part with Dwight King.

    Also – Artie Anisimov leading the league in scoring. Who would’ve thunk it? Also towards the top – NYR cast-off Jonathan Audy-Marchessault. Didn’t see that one coming.

    Like

  26. Credit to Gorton for putting the roster together and to AV for showing faith in young players not named McIlrath.

    Like

  27. Dave,
    Those are the line combos I was thinking of as well.
    Anisomov will follow this hot streak, with a streak where he does not score a point for a month.

    Like

  28. Artie’s stat line is certainly helped along by playing with Panera Bread. Nice skilled player, AA is, but streaky as all hell.

    But as for the important things, meaning the Rangers – you gotta love that you have guys on the 4th line that would do just fine on the 3rd (or even 2nd) line if there were room for them. I can’t remember a time we were this deep, both on paper and in terms of on-ice product.

    Like

  29. Nice write up, thanks!

    I’m not going to get over the moon because we’ve beaten a few good teams during these first 10 games. However, I am encouraged that the team has developed some good chemistry at both ends of the ice. Would love to know the tweaks that AV has made which have resulted in much better break outs from our end and entries into the attach zone. Improvements big and small all over… faceoffs, PP, PK, more time in the O zone and less time trapped in our D zone.

    Our boys are growing a larger target on their backs as other teams will consider us as a measuring stick. Hitch’s comments are fair warning that other coaches will pay attention to and employ different strategies to try and beat us. Continued development, discipline and consistency along with some good luck w/ injuries will be needed to stay on the road to Stanley.

    Like

  30. Chemistry is a key word, Heave Ho. Totally agree. We’ve had a number of seasons where it seemed like very few players on this squad had any chemistry to speak of. We’d have maybe one line at a time that seemed to be going strong. Right now, I’m seeing both tremendous chemistry from a number of players, in addition to guys like Vesey who seem to be able to seamlessly play wherever they’re put. Hopefully the days of blowing everything up in order to “get Nasher going” are over.

    Like

  31. It is a very deep group of forwards. They also have a much better group of forwards in Hartford. If injuries were to hit, guys like Jensen, and Nieves could certainly come up and help.

    Like

  32. Hrivik actually having a decent offensive year in Hartford as well, BDL. 3 goals and 7 points in 7 games. He might be a legit call-up if the injury bug ever hits.

    James – Good point about the center depth. But Hayes has looked pretty damn good, so if something were to happen to one of Step or Zika, we’re looking at Lindberg on the 3rd line. Which isn’t terrible. But in case of emergency, Hrivik has been playing center and having a good season. Not ideal, but not catastrophic. But you are right – we don’t have a legit top-6 center prospect at Hartford right now if the need arises.

    Like

  33. Dave, kudos have to go to our organizational and coaching staffs as they are the architects of the chemistry we’re seeing. Compliments too to the players for buying in.

    Like

  34. Logical and grounded review, well done!

    Yes, skjel needs to take off his skirt.

    Two teams (Boston and Tampa..whose blowout was far more entertaining than the rangers scrimmage) managed to stand up for teammates who took questionable hits last night and win the game..GASP!!! AV (and some of you) must be in your safe space with a colouring book and juice box trying to comprehend.

    Just remember, time and space will disappear and then double bubble is going to have an issue. I want this team to win the cup (as I do every year) even with the all star scrimmage boring style they are playing now. It would be nice to see a little intestinal fortitude from this group to stand up for one another…it really does go a long way.

    Like

  35. Thank you for this report! My idea is that Carp continues his blog on a subscription basis. Question: Would you all pay $25 a season for access to Carp’s blog? I don’t know what the right price is, but we’ve all been reading and participating for years for free, and as long as it’s nominal to us, but adds up to enough to make it worth Carp’s while, it seems like a no brainer and a great second act. Obviously there’s no sense in going this route if no one’s willing to pay. Trying to keep this going (first thing I do the day after a game is log on) and help Carp at the same time (but for the grace of god…). Please let me know.

    Liked by 2 people

  36. @ilb2001: Watching Skjei in the minors it was clear the guy has an incredible touch with the passes.
    As to line changes, AV has the magic touch so far so no need for the peanut gallery to chime in.
    Brooksie, glad you continue to find my comments worthwhile!
    Anybody else finding these games a little boring? I don’t even realy pay attention until they put up the first field goal 🙂

    And from the StLouis Post Dispatch: “New York worked the puck around the offensive zone like it was on a string, and they were hypnotizing the Blues. The string swung one last time from Derek Stepan to Vesey, who slipped into the slot between Stastny and Steen for a quick shot that made it 2-0.”

    Liked by 1 person

  37. I’m with you Heave Ho. We can talk about the additional personnel really working out (and that too is a nod to management for getting the right players), but this team is playing a completely different style of game than last year. AV did his homework. For a guy who supposedly never adjusts (and I bought into that theory as well), he’s certainly tweaked his system to work with the players he has.

    Like

  38. Ilb,
    AV did not have the personal last year to do this, and could not adjust. Gorton got him what he needed this year. Good job by Gorton.

    Like

  39. JoeMama, count me in for that. Question remains how we get Carp back into the games! I don’t profess to know how those arrangements pan out in the real world

    Like

  40. It’s a good point BDL. Who knows? I’ll go with “a little of both”

    ILB – I have no idea how he made this team so much younger in just a few fell-swoops, and without jettisoning Girardi, Staal and Nash. Though Boyle going away has to shave a few years off the average right there.

    Like

  41. I obviously love Carp as much as the next guy and have said that I’m just keeping his seat warm for whatever he decides to do next, but if its a paid subscription model, I’ll pass. I pay for the internet and TV, not for the content on them.

    Like

  42. Corky, I mentioned it somewhere else and it may explain things. Through all the time that I visited Rangers Report Carp mentioned more than a few times that he is not a fan of the Rangers. So, maybe now that he is not forced to watch the Rangers by his job, he’s doing other things than watching hockey.

    Liked by 1 person

  43. Wicky, I do agree with what you’re saying. Can’t get through an 82 game schedule or get deep into the playoffs with a bunch of figure skaters. For instance, last night when Stepan went down it would have been nice to see someone react.
    As far as the space disappearing, you have to remember that aside from the speed and skill, this is a team with some size and strength to it. Kreider, Nash, Zibanejad all have size, Vesey has no problem trying to muscle to the net neither does Miller. It’s not like theres are a bunch of shrimpy wimpies out there. I’m sure the fourth line may have to be laced with some sandpaper at some point, but not at the expense of speed or penalty killing. For now you don’t fix what isn’t broken.

    Like

  44. And Wick- say what you will about Skeji but this blueline would be a lot worse off if he weren’t on it right now. And no I’m not calling him “the second coming of Leetch” 🙂

    Like

  45. For what it’s worth, I’d pay you too Doodie (sorry, RangersReport2) for the efforts if you all can keep it going. Completely lost without this place

    Like

  46. Two things.
    One, we have seen that reacting does no good. No only do you lose the player who got hurt, you then lose the player who reacted.
    Two, wickys point becomes valid if the game changes substantially during the playoffs. The game does change, we all know that, just not as much as it used to.

    Like

  47. Last season not one person here believed what they were seeing. It was obvious very early on what was happening would not last. This team is much different and much better than last years.

    Liked by 1 person

  48. Bob McKenzie just tweeted that the Rangers have unconditionally waived defenseman Calle Andersson and believes it is a case of “for mutually agreed termination of contract”. Also of note, Anaheim did the same with Mason Raymond.

    Like

  49. NHL is a long season, lots of things could happen but for now I’m enjoying the play of the ny rangers. Last year I stop watching the rangers after a few months because I could see they look like a dead team even though they were winning. Hopefully the rangers stay relatively healthy as the season goes on.

    Like

  50. Well done Doodie/RangersReport2/Carp Doppelganger. I wasn’t looking forward to only having Uncle Larry’s writing the next day but the blog is making the winter of Carp more bearable.
    PS – Sire Father!

    Like

  51. If we are going to spend all day comparing this to last years team then lets go back two years ago. The Presidents’ trophy year they started 5-3-2. 12 pts 27gf 31ga. That’s a -4 goal differential plus they had already gone through a 3 game losing streak. By Dec they went on a 13-1 tear while we were waiting for the bottom to fall out through Thanksgiving. Just saying..

    Like

  52. Calle Andersson was the Rangers 4th round pick in 2012. He projected out as an offensive d-man but it seems that he had fallen behind in the prospect race. According to Blueshirt Bulletin, he was recently assigned to the ECHL – I guess he was moved out for McIlrath. He is a right-handed shot so his stock must have really dropped.

    His Dad Peter played 39 games with the Rangers in 1992-93 and 1993-94 and was a charter member of the Black Aces before he was dealt to Florida at the deadline in 1994. I guess we should have refrred to Petr Prucha as being Anderssoned 🙂

    Like

  53. Not sure BDL. He might not have made the jump to facebook, and missed the migration here. I’ll do some digging and see if I have any contact info.

    Like

  54. Also agree about last season vs this season. I don’t think I remember one good win during their hot start last season. It was more of a collection of games where I felt lucky we got a point or two out of it. It won’t last at this level, but this season they’re flat-out dominating.

    Like

  55. Andersson taken 1 pick before Jake Slavin, who’s playing regularly for Carolina.

    That sort of detail always fascinated me. If the picks were flip-flopped, would Carolina have developed Anderson into an NHL defenseman by age 22? Would we have been assigning Slavin to the ECHL? Is it nature, or nurture?
    You look at a guy like Jamie Lundmark, who if he developed the way he was supposed to…lets just say in 2006 when Chicago took Toews, they would’ve been saying “He looks like a young Jamie Lundmark.” Now, this was a guy who showed us pretty much nothing whenever he was given the chance. But his “chances” were basically spot duty on the 4th line in an era when the 4th line wasn’t expected to do a bleeping thing. And he’s been pretty vocal since flaming out that the organization did not bring him along properly, did not teach him anything, and he was basically hung out to dry since day 1. Truth, or sour grapes? How much of it is on the organization, and how much of it is on the player themselves? We had a pretty significant string of busts. Did we draft busts, or did we develop busts?

    Yeah, I just got pretty in-the-weeds on the waiving of a failed 4th rounder.

    Like

  56. Did Lundmark go on to play well somewhere else? The same for Brendl, Jessiman, Sanguinetti, Del Zotto and a bunch of other busts (will McIlrath be included in that sorry group?). If they went on to have productive careers elsewhere, I’d say the problem is the Rangers. However, none of these guys did.

    Like

  57. (If I double-post, its because I replied but it doesn’t seem to have gone through).

    I’m more interested in whether something happened in their development, though. For a long time, this was a prospect graveyard. Lundmark had said that in his time in our system, they never taught him anything. Nobody ever took him under their wing. He wasn’t developed properly (but this could be sour grapes from a guy who was supposed to be a star and didn’t pan out). So I’m just curious about whether some huge deficiency in our development system stalled the development of a good chunk of these kids. If that’s the case, I’m not surprised they didn’t flourish after a change of scenery.

    I tend to think it’s a mix of the two. We most likely drafted guys that just weren’t meant to be. But I’m going to think we didn’t make it easy for them to succeed.

    Like

  58. I wouldn’t include Del Zotto with the others. He had two good years here and two and a half bad ones. Brendl, Jessiman, and Sanguinetti had a sum total of 5 NHL games for the Rangers (all Sanguinetti).

    Like

  59. Something everyone doesn’t consider when coming up with Trouba trade scenarios is that it would require us to buy out Dan Girardi next summer in order to protect Trouba from the expansion draft. Together with his new contract, that’s a lot of cap space for us to eat for one player.

    Like

  60. The organization job is to develop, and put these players in the best position to succeed. We are seeing it right now. Vesey is playing top 6, and thriving. But Buchnevich is being bounced around a bit. Granted he got hurt,but he has now played on all 4 lines. The4th line is not a place for him to succeed.

    Like

  61. Brendl went with Philly and did nothing. Jessiman couldn’t make it out of the minors, Sanguinetti went to Carolina and after a handful of games with a team badly in need of something on defense he was banished to the minors never to be heard from again.

    Yeah, maybe Del Zotto doesn’t fit the same mold as these schlumps. At least he’s stayed in the NHL for a number of years. These other guys…well…(shakes head) terrible.

    Like

  62. Great point re: protecting Trouba, doodie. Unless they’re already planning on going that route with Girardi. That would be quite the cluster-f.

    Like

  63. I believe it’s a combination of both with a poor drafting being responsible for the most of it. But these were the years when they were missing playoffs but still trying to make it by buying expensive free agents. Development of players wasn’t their priority.

    Liked by 1 person

  64. I pay for the internet and TV, not for the content on them
    _________
    If you pay for cable, the cost of content is bundled in, so you do pay for content. That monthly fee is not for the cable box hardware…

    Liked by 1 person

  65. Uncle Larry posted this today:
    “8. Expansion Draft forecast.

    Goalie: Protect Henrik Lundqvist, expose Antti Raanta.

    Defense: Protect McDonagh, Girardi (no-move clause), Marc Staal (no move). Expose Kevin Klein, Nick Holden, Adam Clendening. Skjei is exempt.

    Forward: Protect Zibanejad, Stepan, Kreider, Zuccarello, Miller, Hayes, Fast. Expose Lindberg, Rick Nash, Michael Grabner, Brandon Pirri, Josh Jooris. Vesey and Buchnevich are exempt.”

    What I would do is buy out Girardi (even though I think he’s having a decent comeback season so far) or trade him and keep Klein. Of the forwards I don’t know if you do anything different, but I would hate to see Grabner go. I know we’re only 10 games in, but he’s been what they needed after jettisoning Hagelin.

    Like

  66. It’s been almost twenty hours since the Rangers thumped the formerly 5-2-2 Blues. Do they stink yet? Do the lines need re-shuffling? Any trades required?

    Like

  67. Brooks’ list is pretty reasonable. But I guess things will change depending on how this season unfolds. I do believe they will expose Nash and buy Girardi out though

    Like

  68. Make that buy out + new contract specifically about Trouba isn’t reasonable. The same can be said about any defenseman they acquire. If you’re buying out Girardi it leaves a hole on the right side. a pretty big one when you consider he’s playing top 4 this year.

    Like

  69. I don’t think they’ll protect Fast. I also don’t think he’ll get picked. I also think that Las Vegas will have much better choices on defense than Holden

    Like

  70. James, but that’s my point. Buying out Girardi has an opportunity cost of his dead cap space. 2.61, 3.61, 3.61, 1.11, 1.11, 1.11. Those first three years are an RFA bridge deal of dead cap space.

    Like

  71. I wouldn’t mind losing Fast and keeping Grabner. I wouldn’t want to lose Lindberg either, depending on how he does this year. But if Boo is supposed to be a player, he might be redundant.

    As for Nash…we need to expose at least 25% of our cap. I’m not doing the math, but I think keeping Nash puts us under the minimum.

    Like

  72. Yeah I don’t see Holden being picked. There are teams out there that are 5-deep in talented young D. I think they’d go for a Lindberg. Or if Grabner has a stellar season, he’d be a cheap guy to stick on their 2nd line. And honestly, if Nash goes 25-30 goals this year and gets exposed, it wouldn’t surprise me one bit if they took him for a year of star-power. And maybe they’d like Fast. Who knows?

    Charlie – I don’t know about Raanta being attractive to them. If Tampa can’t get rid of Bishop, either he or the Russian kid are available. Boston has to expose Subban or Rask. Pitt has both Fleury and Murray.

    Like

  73. Forget where I saw it RR2, but I read that Buchnevich prefers, and has always been a RW.
    Didn’t realize that cap space % was a thing. I guess they have to expose Nash.

    Like

  74. Gotcha ILB. The last I looked that was a consideration, but haven’t checked out any updates on the potential expansion rules in a while.

    Like

  75. DaveB- I believe they stopped considering it because it could have been a potential clash between teams having to protect NMCs ( who generally carry the highest salaries ) and reaching the 25% threshold at the same time

    Like

  76. Another stellar review. Carp is going to think he’s not missed at all. All I can say is when’s the last time you watched the Rangers and found yourself practically jumping out of your seat because a play was so good. There was at least a few of those “wow” moments last night. All in all, we have a very exciting, highly motivated team of Blueshirts on our hands, boys and girls, and I’m liking what I’m seeing.

    Liked by 1 person

  77. I suspect that most, if not all, of the GMs will have a pretty good idea which player McPhee is going to pick, and which ones they can expose to satisfy the rules without worrying of them being picked up

    Like

  78. James
    It will be interesting to see how this team does when other teams rountinely clog the neutral zone effectively (like Carolina did the other night).

    I agree this team has some size, but is it forecheck wear down opponents effective size in a grinding series? Some are but are they enough?

    Skjel is fine when teams are letting the rangers skate up and down the ice, he’s not so good when he’s in his own zone battling, I’d rather have clendening in and Holden on his natural side…I think they would be better not worse.

    I think it was bdl that said something about retaliation doesn’t do any good…I vehemently disagree. Listen to any of the players that were the victim of the dirty hit that caused the scrap…everyone of them was happy someone had their back. It means a lot to the “room” when guys stand up for each other. If you are up by 4 or 5 goals, why not show a little pride? If you want to say restraint in a 1-1 tie in the 3rd period, I might understand it (wouldn’t agree but would understand). Lack of onions will hurt this team at some point, probably when it matters most. If it’s not lack of onions then it’s lack of faith in the players by the head coach. Either way not good.

    Like

  79. Las Vegas would never take Rick Nash unless they are confident they can turn around and deal him to one of the teams on his acceptable list. Also, I don’t think the NHL has truly set all of the rules so Nash, with a modified NTC, might have to be protected. I expect Vegas to make a lot of deals with teams in terms of the Expansion Draft. Vegas is going to look to add draft picks and players in return for selecting Player X and passing on Player Y. For example, using Uncle Larry’s list, the Rangers could offer a player (Fast), or a prospect or a draft pick to Vegas who then selects a lesser available Ranger.

    I expect current teams to do that with players – especially those with longer term/higher contracts. You are also going to see teams make deals at the deadline with the intent of preparing for the Expansion Draft. I would guess that a team or two might have to trade for a veteran goalie to leave exposed or risk losing their number one netminder.

    Like

  80. AnthonyM- I agree that the rules aren’t fully set yet, but I think Las Vegas will have to select X amount of players, And I’m not sure taking draft chioices from teams instead of actual players will be allowed. They need to meet certain floor/ceiling requirements, and have a full team that can skate.

    Like

  81. Vegas will be selecting 30 players including 3 goalies. As such some will be ahl caliber although I believe initially they won’t have their own ahl team. Doubtful they go for more than 1 big money goalie (certainly not all three).

    With regard to all positions they will go for a mix of young and old, pricey and not. They also have 2 day headstart on unprotected ufas and rfas. If a team loses a guy in that window that counts as the one they lose via the expansion draft.

    Some players in ahl will be grabbed as part of the 30.

    Like

  82. We need to get Wicky another outlet for as long as the Rangers keep playing this [successful] European hockey. Do they still fight in Hartford?

    Like

  83. Drouin talking about Cally, Krug about mcquaid, both from last night. Stepan talking about Kreider and mcilrath last season, raanta talking about mcilrath this season (which I thought was a bad move by mcilrath), del zotto talking about Prust (or Rupp, can’t remember) during HBO show in 2012, mcdonut about mcilrath last season etc etc etc. It really bonds teams and rooms when guys stand up for one another and they always point out how much they do in interviews (eg).

    Cracks me up this idiot coach takes the team on “team building” exercises yet discourages one of the best team building exercises on the ice when they stand up for one another…he’s an idiot.

    Like

  84. It’s a different game in October than in March. If your not worried about the D being exposed to a forecheck, you have not been paying attention. This D is looking good when the puck is in the other end 75% of the game.
    .
    Ironically, this year’s team may fare better with the top teams that will skate with them and struggle against lower echelon teams that will trap and counter punch; AZ, Car, etc…

    Like

  85. Alex
    I wasn’t specifically talking about mcilrath in the least bit, as a matter of fact when have I said anything about him or glass or any other supposed fighter being in our line up? All I was saying is standing up for your teammates is a positive thing.

    Like

  86. The Euro aspect, or the soccer-ish, Krueger-y one, is the frequent back-passing to change the point of attack. Everyone has used it the last couple of years on the PP breakout through the neutral zone, but the Rangers do it 5v5 this year, a lot. Don’t see enough other teams to know how trendy it is.

    Like

  87. Clearly you misunderstood the post or have reading comprehension issues.

    And btw, it seemed like a “new game” between Boston and Florida or Tampa and the isles or kings and ducks or yotes and sharks didn’t it? It is still emotional hockey in the NHL and there will come a time when a ranger player or two will have to step up.

    Like

  88. Norm – my fav part of this team is effective neutral zone passing and possessing the puck. Puts much more strain on the opposition. to retain puck, regroup and attack. Spend less time chasing and more time attacking.

    Liked by 1 person

  89. Alex
    Ok, so it’s reading comprehension issues for you…I was simply listing some of the interviews by other players saying they respected/appreciated him jumping in on their behalf…now wtf does that have to do with him being passed up by 29 other teams?

    Like

  90. Wicky – I understand what you’re saying and I agree with you. Being overly physical doesnt equate to fighting. Much better to be the pounder than the poundee. Face washes and neck grabs have always been part of any scrum – and there will always be scrums. Hard physical play takes a toll on any opponent. If it means looking up to see who’s about to hit you and you turn the puck over – or refuse to make a play by turning away to avoid the hit….especially rings true come playoffs. Bigger heavier hitting teams that CAN play with speed and skill are always going to be the better team. The Ranger smurfs of the 80’s showed that. Our only cup win in 76 years featured a team tough as nails ready to play smack down hockey when called upon.

    Rock on Wicky – I got yo back

    Liked by 1 person

  91. ILB – I didn’t explain myself well. Vegas wouldn’t take draft picks instead of players, they would acquire picks/prospects/players to select Player X instead of Player Y. In the Rangers example you send them, let’s say a 3rd rounder and they draft Clendening instead of Klein.

    I know that is an extreme example, but it illustrates what I was talking about.

    I am still confused as to who gets protected in terms of NTC and who doesn’t. From what I have heard teams do not know the full rules yet – which is bizarre given how we are less than a year away. I think the NH: and the NHLPA are going to have to get together. My bet is the union will be looking for some givebacks from the league.

    Like

  92. Wicky,
    I consider myself an old school hockey fan, and until recently I felt exactly the same way you feel right now about standing up for teammates and so on. But the game has changed, and the instigator rule has made it very difficult to play that way. The league protects the perps. The only thing standing up for your teammate after a cheap shot gets you is, 2,5, and 10. It’s just not worth it anymore. Let the refs and the league handle it. Now I am still all for handling it the next time you see the player, like McIrath vs Simmonds. But to react during the game does you no good. I get what you are saying about the room. I don’t discount that, but I think players understand now, it hurts the team to react more than it helps.

    Like

  93. Wicky

    2 facts.

    You did mention him 4 times so obviously you have a thing for him and you have from the time he was drafted.

    29 other teams disagree with you. The league has changed.

    Like

  94. Bdl
    There were over 10 fights in the nhl (I skimmed the box scores) and the two fights I remember being a direct result of a hit that another teammate came to the aid of a down player, one was given an instigator and one was not. Cally was given an instigator and mcquaid was not.

    There was an instigator in the ducks kings game but oddly enough it was not given to bieksa who challenged Clifford while he (Clifford) was on the bench, nor was Clifford given one when as soon as the puck dropped he switched with an on ice player to fight bieksa.

    I do not share your “faith” in the league to handle it and I don’t really think the players do either (I know I wouldn’t). I also think AV is an exception as a coach as well, you rarely hear of a coach disciplining a player for standing up for a teammmate other than AV.

    To go a step further with this, I don’t think the refs are very objective and I think some teams are “expected” to scrap and play a “tougher” game than others are (hence a bruin player does not get an instigator while the ning player does for the same action)

    I 100% understand why you think that way, but in my opinion until fighting is unequivocally banned (I hope it never is) teams are always going to have to have players fight from time to time.

    Like

  95. I’m sorry Alex, you poor confused individual. Let me make this a little more simple for you…I do not follow EVERY team, so I was recalling from my (admittingly limited) memory of interviews of players that had a teammate jump in (I am a rangers fan and that is why I remembered the mcilrath ones as well as the del Zotto interview) and I saw the Krug interview on NHL network last night.

    if you continue to selective read sweetheart, you’re never going to figure anything out.

    Like

  96. I love good hard physical hockey. That 11-12 team sure was not the normal ranger team I’ve watched since 1968 or so…

    Like

  97. Every morning I arrive deep down in the mine
    6 foot 4 weigh 245
    Kinda broad at the shoulder and narrow at the hip
    Everybody knows you give no lip to e3

    Nobody knows where e3’s from
    He just drifted into town
    And Stays all alone
    Never says much, kinda quiet and shy
    And when he speaks at all he just says hi

    Big e3, big e3, big bad e3

    Like

  98. He’s not the kind of man
    Who tends to socialize
    E3 seems to lean on
    Old familiar ways
    And ain’t no fool for love songs
    That whisper in his ears
    Still crazy after all these years

    Like

  99. Alex
    I used a term of endearment and I wasn’t being nasty. You were making assumptions that were 100% incorrect. When I tried explain to you what I was saying, you simply reposted your initial incorrect assumption at the end of another post.

    You clearly have a preconceived notion that you are unwilling to deviate from.

    Like

  100. Alex
    Not to mention this in one of your posts…”You did mention him 4 times so obviously you have a thing for him and you have from the time he was drafted.”

    Fwiw gudbranson was the D man I wanted in that draft (he was the most complete D man in the draft imo) not mcilrath. I did say he was who the rangers were going to draft at that pick, so credit where credit is due there!

    Like

  101. Alex, I’ve got your back (I had the same reading problem as you). I think this gets me a comment instigating penalty, though. Ms. Doodie will tell me if I get 5 minutes or 5 days.

    Like

  102. cops, the correct ripoff, I believe, is…”up with which I SHALL not put.” I see your pedantry and raise you a pedantry. Oh, crap, I forgot, I’m in the box.

    Liked by 1 person

  103. Idk why this is still such a debate. Back in the summer we were going back and forth about how the fourth line would be Lapierre and Glass with Grabner. We couldn’t have been more wrong about anything other than Mcilrath.
    This team isn’t going to switch gears and start moving the Pirris and Veseys for Beleskey or Tom Wilson. Not this year and not while AV is coach.

    Like

  104. So norm, who says I need to watch Hartford because I might see fights (incorrectly assuming that’s what I’m looking for, just fights) now wants to pile on…brilliant

    Like

  105. Wick I feel bad that I started all this today. To quote wedding crashers:
    You leave me in the trenches taking grenades John! Team player!

    Like

  106. James
    It’s a debate because I said standing up for teammates was important to a locker room and team cohesion.

    Because I said that, all I want is 20 fights a game and a roster full of mcgrattons according to some.

    I then mistakenly tried to elaborate to those who were confused, but it was too late. They just want to think what they think and being accurate means nothing to them.

    Like

  107. Wow, we have a little friendly fighting here. Ok, I’m going to get my 2,5, and 10 and defend Wicky. Just because he’s my teammate, and sometimes, even though you don’t fully agree with your teammate, you defend him first and ask questions later.
    As far as modern hockey goes. I fully understand, and do the hockey players, if the game is close, you wait for your moment, even if it’s next game. But if you’re up ( or down) 4-5 goals, and somebody cheap shots your teammate, you have to have someone who’s willing to take 2,5, and 10.

    Like

  108. Alex is my teammate, too. And ilb. And Wicky. So now we have a real locker room problem–so many backs to have. But at least we can blame it all on James. I think it’s high time for some misogynistic drinking songs.

    Liked by 2 people

  109. Based on posts from two weeks ago I thought everyone was more than fine having Kreider serve as the designated fighter on the team with Klein as the backup.

    Like

  110. I agree with ilb re the game/score situation does make a difference on when the retaliation happens (I think I covered that in my 3:30ish post).

    Also, my 7:10 should have read there were over 10 fights in the NHL “last night”…sorry about that omission

    Ilb
    Such a good captain and teammate 😉

    Like

  111. Lev
    There are certainly guys on the roster that can handle themselves….Kreider, miller, Klein, Holden. the problem would probably arise when Kreider or miller breaks a hand in the process (hopefully doesn’t happen) and then most will rightfully be upset and complain about them fighting.

    Liked by 1 person

  112. I don’t think you have to have anyone designated. You just need to have a team mentality, and a few people who are willing, and can do it. NY has a few. Ryan Reaves, and players of that mold, are almost extinct. I didn’t know he was playing last night until they showed him following a Ranger with his eyes passing by him around St. Louis net in the third period.

    Like

  113. Lost in this whole “discussion” is a pretty valid point made in an earlier post about the inconsistency of the refs in calling the instigator penalty.

    Like

  114. Ilb
    That clip was with skjel. And you are correct, you don’t have to have a designated guy and I think the “team” model is a far better way to go.

    Like

  115. I’d rather risk Kreider or Miller breaking a hand in a fight that may or may not happen once every 10 games than waste a roster spot and slow the 4th line or D down on guys like our very own Glass, Lapierre, McIlrath… or Reaves or Boyle or Prust or…

    Like

  116. The problem with things not put up with, lib, is two-fold. One, apparently Churchill never said it (“Madame, that is the sort of thing up with which I will not put”) which is a crying shame. Two, “put up with” is a phrasal verb, so you’re not really ending with a preposition. Once we all get this straight, the blog will be much improved, for talking about fighting and stuff.

    Like

  117. Although I was one of the very few that didnt have a big problem with Glass the last two years. Now, of course, he has no business on this team.

    Like

  118. So we are going to be treated tomorrow to a Connor McDavid show, who is, apparently, going to win rookie of the year by a mile. He, and his 5 goals. When is Edmonton going to see Jimmy Vesey, and his 6 goals then?
    Sometimes we under appreciate what we have.

    Like

  119. There’s no confusion when you mention 1 guy 4 times in 1 post Wicky. Clearly we disagree on players we want on the team. I was more than fine with Prust when he was here but finding the next Prust at ok cap hit is not easy. I was not interested at all in a Backes and I believe you were.

    I assume you’re not kidding when on several threads you say that you’re not enjoying (to say the least) the games this season. That’s for you to decide of course but I think you’re in the minority on that.

    Liked by 1 person

  120. He’s a sophomore ILB. But somehow still junior eligible as well. Crazy.

    I’m going to the game tomorrow. I’ll let you all know how McDavid does

    Like

  121. Alex
    Please tell me where on this thread I said I wanted mcilrath In the line up. Did you read any other post explaining why I mentioned him 4 times in one post? Clearly not! Again lack of comprehension.

    Backes…?! Wtf are you talking about? I guess if backes was out there for 3 mil per, I might take a flyer on him, but not at his current price.

    Im really not sure what your fascination is with making incorrect statements but it’s a little weird and moms basementish.

    Like

  122. Is anyone else seeing what this Alex is…did I specifically say I wanted mcilrath in the lineup in this thread? Or did I just give (apparently 4) examples of teammates of his at different times saying they appreciated him stepping in? Night and day difference in those two.

    Like

  123. Alex
    And btw in previous threads I did state that this style (lacking physicality) is more boring to me. I prefer my hockey with physicality (aka hitting), but that is just a preference of mine.

    Like

  124. Wicky

    You make all these implied statements over the course of time then you seem, to run from them. It is very clear that you were a huge McIlrath backer and that was a big part of the keep left defense on left side you constantly preached. That’s part of your anti Skjei stance among others. You were also very much in the go after Backes in the summer camp.

    We clearly disagree on the style we want to see but I’m not going to get nasty like you are.

    Like

  125. Alex
    Lol…you are not going to get nasty..instead you’ll just spew lies. OK.

    I asked a simple question about this thread (which is the current topic), but you couldn’t answer the simple question. Instead you start making other things up that you are speculating about, so let me clarify some things for you since I know what I said and you are just grasping at straws…
    Backes-like many other free agents, sure I had interest, but as I said before, not at that price. Do I like his game? Yes. I also like the games of perry, getzlaf, burns, big buff, Roussel, Simmonds, hornqvist, Jamie Benn, Toews, shaw, marchand, etc. Want to talk about any of them? Of course you don’t.
    Mcilrath-like many others here, I liked the kid. Played an honest game, worked hard. Was he one of the 6 best D men on the team to start? Clearly not. Is he capable of being an NHL D man, i think so.

    As far as the left/right D thing goes, I’ve said all along that they should play their natural sides. It’s extremely beneficial in the D zone along the wall. I don’t think any D man should be playing their off side (if you weren’t selective reading you would know this). I also said I’d put clendening in over skjel at this point for that very reason. I think skjel is the 4th best lefty D man on the roster right now (sorry if you’re a member of the Brady bunch). I don’t hate skjel, he’s going to be a good NHL D man (also stated that several times) and I’d rather trade staal somehow and have skjel in the top 6 on the left instead, but that isn’t the case now obviously.

    see, facts are so much better.

    Like

  126. Alex
    Nice using doodie to run away instead of just admitting you made incorrect statements.

    Btw you were great in Monty Python and the holy grail…”run away”

    Like

  127. I have no problem debating and agreeing to disagree with others here…hell it happens to all of us here at one time or another, but having someone state things that are blatantly not true (especially when it is in the same thread in previous posts) is something that I will NOT let slide. So apologies to the others here for my unwillingness to let someone get away with spreading falsehoods.

    Like

  128. I just get home. Turn on Fox (shudders) and to my delight the frickin game is still going at 6-6. It takes 19 seconds for them to call a rain delay. You’re killing me Smalls!

    Literally

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s