Wait, what do we do now?

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What is this — optimism? Euphoria? I don’t get it.

Where is the despondence? The desperation? The sky-is-falling calls to trade the entire roster?

capt5c992a4ca005447596f5263003b31e47rangers_sharks_hockey_cabm106.jpg

Remember what I said other day about how there wouldn’t be much to talk about on a Rangers blog if the team always just played smart, solid hockey? Well…..we’re still not at that point. But it’s remarkable how two games can change the entire tenor of the conversation.

Remarkable stuff: 3-1 road trip, 7-6 overall record. Don’t look now, but your “woefully slow, unfocused, defensively porous Rangers”:http://rangers.lohudblogs.com/2006/10/31/black-halloween/ are “tied for first in the Atlantic Division”:http://www.nhl.com/nhl/app?service=page&page=StandingsPage. Yes, I’m aware that on November 3, that means only slight more than the three goals I scored in warm-ups the other night. But if you were all worried not so long ago that the team was in shambles, maybe you can now reconsider.

Some stray thoughts:

  • Attitude. I had said going in that you want your team to play with confidence, but not SO much confidence that they lose their attention to detail (big hockey phrase). This is what the Rangers brought to San Jose last night. Repeat after me: Urgency good. Panic bad.
  • That said, keep in mind how quickly things could have turned for the Rangers after a bad goal late in the third. Kevin Weekes was brilliant, no doubt. But he chose the wrong split second to zone out in the crease, and it could have cost the team a point. Meanwhile, goalie controversy? Hardly. As Tom Renney has said, you need two goalies in this league, and the Rangers seem to have it.
  • Brendan Shanahan: The guy can do no wrong, and his empty-netter last night — in which the puck caromed off the boards, and even stopped briefly at a concession stand for a hot dog and a beer — was proof. Next up for Shanny: world peace.

    ********************************

    Meanwhile, in other news, remember I said the other day that the Rangers front office might be busy “hunting for a defenseman”:http://rangers.lohudblogs.com/2006/10/31/big-game-hunting/?

    Actually, it was “pheasant hunting”:http://www.brooksbulletin.com/news/local_news.asp?itemid=58087. Seriously. I can’t make this stuff up.

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    123 Comments

    1. Great to see the Rangers actually play like a team. Renney got lucky when he rolled his lines. Its tough to see kids like Dawes & Pock sit, they will never get a fair shot.

      Slats is off hunting, In the middle of the SEASON!!! This is such bullcrap. Why does little Jimmy Dolan keep him around??

      I wonder if he was trying to scare the team into playing better, I can see it now……….
      “Come on guys, its like hunting with VP Chaney, you’ll have a great time. Thats it, just close your eyes, you wont feel a thing.”

    2. I’m glad to see the rangers play the last two games like the did in the first half of last season. The question is can they keep this up and play this style of game consistently. That means playing well defensively and getting good goaltending. Weekes has played very well these past two games. I’d like to see weekes keep playing. This happened last year in the opposit direction when weekes was supposed to be the number 1 and lundquist won the number 1 spot. One of hockeys winning formular is to play the hot goaltender. I would still try and move Marek Malik.

    3. What is this—optimism? Euphoria? I don’t get it.

      Sam, I simply agree. They were not as bad as some posters feared before the western swing and they are not as good a lot will hope after it including me jubilant last night after this unexspected win. Am I euphoric, I am not ( No Lady Koala we don´t go to Carolina !:))

      To your point about the goaltending controversy: Baby Koala asked me for a quite a while now about Hendrik Lundqvist !

      The guy was so sensational last year until to Olympics but couldn´t reach this level again. What do you think about the reasons beeing so close to the team ?? Is it still a physical problem with the hip flexor or migraine ( I have those problems as well because of Lady Koala !:) or is it mentally or is just the poor coverage of the defense but in contrast to last year he is not making those game saving stops any more…

      I think Kevin Weeks will be in goal on Sunday because Renney will probably go with the hot guy…!!!

    4. The answer to the rangers not looking slow especially defensively is two reason. The first is that they finally decided to play playoff type hockey by tight checking and keeping the play in there zone along the boards and not try and be fancy with the puck by trying to stick handle there way out of there zone and the second reason is they didn’t try and play a more wide open game, lets face it, there not built for speed. They finally decided to go back to the first half of last seasons formular.

    5. Wow! Great game last night. The good thing about it that the whole team played SOLID D and Renney finally was rolling all 4 lines and Holloweg this guy is great. Shanny so good that Rangers got him over the summer. This was Rangers best game so far. Tyutin and Ward are just great even Rozy body checked one of the SJ’s forwards. Lets wait and see how they will fare against Buffalo that will be a real test.

    6. Kirill, when I saw roszival throw a body check, I literally started laughing. I didnt know what happened to my team. Who were those people playing last night???!!!

    7. It was a good game and reminded me of how the team played in the preseason, coming out strong and putting the other team on their heals early.

    8. This was their best all around game played… I can’t believe they shut down their PP like that. Idk who or what flipped the ON switch for these guys, but all I know is I’m happy about it.

      But come on Sam. To say that there wouldn’t be much to talk about now that their doing well is rediculous… This is, after all, a New York team with New York fans… you know we’re not happy until there’s perfection!

      With that said I need Lundy in the net getting the wins. I need the Kasparaitis that I know and love back in the line up, I need them to finalize/solidify our roster by cutting down on the wingers and Defenseman, and I need another centerman (NOT WARD!!) so betts can move down to a fourth line and we can finally have a good checking line

      So basically I won’t be fully satisfied till Jed gets back (hunt him down and talk to him for us would ya Sam… just let him know the fans are still thinkin about him)

    9. Sam,

      I love reading your insight daily. What a terrific idea, especially for those of us outside the New York metro area who do not get a chance to see the team regularly. Last night was a terrific performance. I am glad to see Kevin Weekes play better. Many Ranger fans forget how terrific he was along with Artus Irbe in the Hurricanes Cup run a few years back. If Henrik Lundqvist can get back to form, it gives us the kind of goalie tandem we have not had since the Richter/Healy days, or it gives Sather the flexibility to potentially acquire more organizational depth at other positions of need, most notably center and wing. Both are good things, and I hope Weekes gets supported by the Garden faithful next time he gets a home start.

      As for the issue of Thomas Pock and Nigel Dawes playing over Malik/Rachunek/Roszival and Hossa. I have two different opinions. In the case of Pock, I think it sends a terrible message to other up and coming Rangers players that he has not seen the ice since the first couple of games. Pock jumped into the play well, displayed a quality point shot, and was responsible and chippy in his own end. Those things alone set him apart from the efforts of his contempararies on the blue line. The accountablity mandate set up by Sather and Renney last year is being ignored, and they have an obligation to the other Rangers to play the best defensemen in the organization. Winning, not showcasing or loyalty is paramount.

      I am not so inclined to put Dawes in the same catagory in terms of “deserving” the chance to play. My concern is his role in terms of development. IF he deserves to play, then he needs to be used in a role which suits his game, that being a creative, chippy, second tier type of scorer. That lineup hole just is not there with Straka playing well and the Cullen-Prucha-Shanny line being reunited. Dawes brings better energy than Hossa, but Hossa is much less of a defensive liability in a 4th line role and gives more depth on the PK (which Renney needs to take Shannahan off of.) Honestly, if Dawes needs to replace anyone, I would pick Adam Hall. Hall has been decent, but not great, and certainly has not added a chippy energy element to the team as many of us had hoped. Dawes and Hollweg together with a defensively responsible centerman would be a fun line to watch.

      Alas, it does not matter, because Dawes will be back in Hartford when Ortmayer is ready to play later this year.

      Keep up the great work

      French
      Washington DC

    10. Sam,

      Rob makes a great point. A Jed Ortmeyer update would be most appreciated.

      As for the pheasant hunting, I was driving to the Hokie game last week and saw a bumper sticker that said “I’d rather hunt with Cheney than Ride with Kennedy.” Gotta love my home commonwealth!

    11. French,

      Very good points, and as a relocated New Yorker now living in the DC area myself, I feel your pain, haha. Glad to see we can still get good coverage on our team no matter where we are. :)

    12. This is Sam’s post about ortmeyer from yesterday or two days ago:

      Chris asked about Ortmeyer. We’ve seen a lot of him working out at the Training Center, but the last time I saw him was at the Garden before the road trip,when he said he was going to see his girlfriend while the Rangers were out on the West Coast, and then he’s going to come back for more tests.
      The deal with Jed is fairly simple: as long as he’s on blood thinners, he can’t play. He was told after the embolism that he needed to be on the thinners at least three months afterward. Well we’re coming up on three months fairly soon, but that’s just the low end projection, and I’m not sure if there’s a period in there when he’s off the thinners but still can’t have contact.
      Throw in getting into game shape and I’d have to guess December at the earliest and most likely the first of the year. But maybe we’ll be surprised. I’m sure a lot of you would love to have him back.

    13. Next up for Shanny: World peace. Wow Sam, you almost had me cracking up in Law class lol, keep the one-liners coming

    14. suffering from migraine ??????????

      I really can imagine, once in a while same problems because of…:)

    15. Hey French, I saw a bumper sticker once, that said “Ted Kennedys car kills more people then my gun”!!!

    16. LOL!!! It made me laught hysterically too… For weeks every time i thought about it i cracked up!

      And Orts really is sorely missed…!!!

    17. Response to french60wasp about having a responsible center man to put in between dawes and Hollweg, we had one. yhanks to that great trade by sather which at the time i didn’t like, I might add was Domenic Moore in a three player deal for Hall. I haven’t seen anything at the moment to change my mind.

    18. Tom G,

      It is easy to second guess the Moore trade now. At the time, I thought it was a steal. Moore was a very replacable guy if Immonen or Dubinsky (what many Ranger fans thought was the long term plan) won the second line center job between Shannahan and Prucha, with Cullen on the 3rd and Betts on the 4th. Moore had great speed, but was terrible on faceoffs down the stretch.

      Hall on the other hand was a young, big, chippy power forward who had scored goals on the power play by being out front, and he was coming to a team that did not have a single guy who fit that description on the NHL roster. Hall played very well early on. He and Hollweg were right in Kolzig’s face the entire first game. Sadly, it seems like his aggression level has gone down, he has not protected his team, and he has not been used much as a screen guy on the power play. For the Rangers to be a long term winner, you have to make that kind of deal… long term I think we should judge it based on what level, if any, Immonen and/or Dubinsky attain.

    19. If you are going to trade moore for a checking forward than you need to get a big forward who throws crunching body checks, score once in a while and be able to fight when necessary. I don’t see any of those qualities in hall.

    20. I still would like to see…

      Prucha-Straka-Jagr
      Dawes-Nylander-Shannhan
      Hollweg-Cullen-Hall
      Hossa-Betts-Ward

      It leaves us a bit week up the middle, but Prucha gives Jagr a scorer while the shoulder heals (and they had great PP chemistry last year), Shanny gets a set up man in Nylander, and Cullen and Betts get to play roles that make more sense to their skillset. Dubinsky is the guy who would best help this lineup by a call up, but he has to earn that right with better play in Hartford.

    21. Hall did that with the Preds. Rangeritis (or a coaching directive) is the only reason I can think that his game has changed so radically.

      Besides, Moore was not going to bring us back a young Adam Graves clone.

    22. I honestly am not second guessing the move, i really didn’t like that move when i heard heard about it but time will tell. i just feel if your going to make a trade for that kind of player he should be a bigger forward who has the ability to drop the gloves if need be. The rangers are to soft. i don’t want shanny the one to have to do everything. speaking of shanny he has been by far the best ranger player, now that was a great signing by sather, even though it wasn’t hard to do considering shanny wanted to pl ay for the rangers.

    23. Well, at least we agree on one thing. I really liked this kid dubinsky when I watched him play for the rangers in preseason. I would love to see him get called up to the big club.

    24. Hall is basically an almost the same player as Hossa with different skating styles. Both can be physical, but don’t throw their weight around too much.

      Last season Hall had about 35 hits in 75 games; Hossa had 32 hits in 64 games.

      so far this season Hall has been credited with 16 hits in 13 games; Hossa only with 7 in 12 games

    25. DoodieMachetto on

      Slats should go hunting with Dick Cheney.

      On a more serious note, in repsonse to French’s line suggestions, I think you are overlooking the fact that Straka, while capable of playing up the middle, sucks at it. More importantly, he’s scoring goals right now and that line is really clicking, even without Jagr shooting as much.

      Weekes should continue to start, and most importantly, if he has a bad game, he should be given a second chance before they give the reins back to Hank. He’s playing well, Lundqvist isn’t. Give Weekes a shot.

    26. I agree DoodieMachetto. The best formula to winning is playing the hot goaltender and as of tofday that goaltender is weekes. Keep riding the train as it rolls down the track.

    27. “Keep riding the train as it rolls down the track.”

      like they did with Blackkburn. No thanks, I prefer rotation with favoring the guy who is more hot at the moment.

    28. Vinny you disagree with the line you quoted, and then just said the same thing as the line you quoted!

    29. What i mean is since weekes at the moment is playing better than lundquist keep playing him, that’s all, nothing more nothing less.

    30. I agree that Straka is not best suited for center, but that is more the lesser of two evils for Nylander. If Nylander is going to pass pass pass, I would rather him play with a straight gunner in Shanny than a guy with concerns about his shot in Jagr. With Straka scoring, and Prucha starting to get his grove back, Jagr can be the playmaker rather than the gunner until his shoulder improves. In a perfect world, We’d have a number one center with Jagr and Prucha, and Straka-Nylander could play with Shannahan. Sadly, we don’t have a Mike Modano type guy in the pipeline.

    31. Sam, make some call!

      A Toronto radio station is reporting that there is word out of Chicago that a deal is done and is awaiting league approval.

      No full details but they said Prucha/Rachunek for Seabrook was the root of it, but that Chi is also getting possibly another another defenceman.

    32. French… I prefer Prucha and Cullen playing with Shanny… I dont think Straka and Nylander are the type of players shanny needs. They are ballerinas!

    33. The webmaster of the Rangers report weblog announced today that poster Koala was put on waivers today and was immediathely claimed by a weblog fan site of the Florida Panthers !!!

    34. That deal sounds like the rangers are giving up to much, three players for seabrook. I can see Prucha straight up, if there giving up two defensemen besides prucha than we should get back Cullimore.

    35. Why would the send Rachunek… we need to dump salary too… Malik, Roszival or Kaspar should be the ones going!

    36. jesus the deal is probably including those dmen because sather is MAKING chicago take them back becasue they are awful he’s getting something back in this he’s got to seabrook for prucha is bothering me these last two days. can’t replace prucha’s heart.

    37. Dan Blackburn’s career was ended by injury, and not by one that occurred because he was playing too much. It’s sad, but, much as I like to blame management when possible, not Sather’s fault.

    38. “Dan Blackburn’s career was ended by injury, and not by one that occurred because he was playing too much. It’s sad, but, much as I like to blame management when possible, not Sather’s fault.”

      he got lit up because they either barely played him or overplayed him, then they told him to get stronger so he went to lift weights, and that was it for his career.

    39. “If they trade Prucha, I’ll REALLY wish he had gone hunting with Cheney.”

      whant to go jackal and hyena hunting with me?

    40. “If there going to trade any ranger defensemen it definately should be marek malik.”

      it is becoming apparent that Hyena (and probably Jagr) loves Malik and Malik is not getting traded

    41. Normally I am not allowed to comment any more on this issues but if the Rangers really would move Prucha out of town, that would be probably the most stupid idea in the last ten years….

      Good bye to everybody !

      I am going now definitely !!!

    42. it is like Rembrandt going up to Da Vinci and saying “my problem is that you are assinine in every paiting and invention, stop reaching, take your medication and be normal like me”

    43. Yes Vinny thats EXACTLY what its like… thanks for again, adding absoutely nothing!!!

      Puckhead – have you heard anything else?!!

    44. I’ve checked the toronto newspapers online and the blackhawks official website. There is nothing about any trade with the rangers.

    45. DoodieMachetto on

      Sam,

      Can we get some rules here? I don’t think that everyone should resort to namecalling to ruin what could be, and has been, an otherwise great place for discussion.

    46. I am happy to leave because of the level of the disscussion…

      It wouldn`t have made sense any more…!!!

    47. yes Sam can you please raise the politeness and IQ level of some posters?

      And Sam, you better do anything in your power to save Prucha from getting traded, we are counting on you as our only hope.

    48. I went searching for rumors and the latest thing I found was the rangers were talking with chicago wednesday and chicago was interested in prucha but chicago was willing to give up cullimore but the rangers weren’t interested in cullimore they wanted seabrook but chicago wouldn’t make the deal so i think prucha is safe. I also found another interesting website called “hockey rumors” and this one said that the rangers were close to signing Brian leetch to a one year deal and that in order to sign leetch they would have to trade one of there defensemen. The rumor has it that it will be rosival since there were a few clubs that showed interest in him including the oilers.

    49. For what it’s worth, a moderator on Hawk’s official message board had the following to say last night at around 11pm: “…as I said at 7 pm… any rumor about Seabrook to NYR is false… My source: Stan Bowman, director of hockey operations.”

    50. Recommendation for all those as frustrated with Vinny pooh’s nonsense as I am, ignore him. His personal attacks are out of line and often unfounded. His insights are not all that deep and are often inaccurate. Sam has told us that he is not going to play a role of moderator, so lets take a page out of the “Dealing with Children” rulebook and just ignore him until he realizes nobody is listening.

      There is no way that the Rangers are going to make a trade for Prucha + Rachunek + Another D-man for Seabrook. However, I have said this before, if they are going to trade Prucha, and I’d prefer they didn’t, they should at least unload some of their deadweight, **cough**Malik**cough**, for rookie/prospect/picks in addition to receiving Seabrook.

    51. NYRich82, there is more personal attacks and rudeness in your post than in all of mine combined. I suggest everybody ignore him instead of me.

    52. Even if Prucha is not getting traded for Seabrook, the mere fact that he is starting to get mentioned in trade rumors is bad news.

    53. Dudes…..

      Prucha!??!!….

      Remember?!?!?!

      possible trade?!?!!

      stop it with the “he did it”, “no, he did it!”

      just talk hockey…

      AZ

    54. “Even if Prucha is not getting traded for Seabrook, the mere fact that he is starting to get mentioned in trade rumors is bad news.”

      couldn’t agree more!!!

      AZ

    55. i agree that it’s bad news that his name had come up because the Hawks had asked….we certainly weren’t shopping him….

      AZ

    56. AZ! Why is it bad news that the Hawks asked for him… If anything thats good news that people want what we have!

    57. it is bad news because now almost every team will be asking for him and chances are our GM duo will bite eventually.

    58. Every team was asking for him since he started scoring!!!! Slats doesnt get schooled… He schools others!

    59. i think it’s a bad thing his name has come up because he’s the type of player who is invaluable IMO….it’s not just about putting 30 in the back of the net with this guy….he creates plays that aren’t there….on top of that, he’s 5’7″ looks to hit people and takes hits….invaluable

      it’s great that other teams want what we have…it means we’ve done something right…but it could also mean that we’re taking a 21 year old kid that Chicago doesn’t want anymore….why not?!?!…nobody truly knows…i just don’t want this to be the epitomy of another Ranger flop trade…

    60. His name has been coming up since last season.

      Seriously, i doubt this deal has even been sent to the league for approval!

    61. “Slats doesnt get schooled… He schools others!”

      yeah like he did with Lindros, Poti, Dunham, etc. Also, he schooled everybody by giving Holik 9 million, and Kasparaitis over 4 million per for 6 years.

    62. If you wanna pretend that Slats had total control… sure!!!

      Dolan had a lot to do with who came here!

    63. Prucha is around 5’11” Seabrook is overrated, only thing everybody cares is that he is young, that is his main asset and Chicago is trying to cash in while they can get a lot in return. If I was them I would gladly do that trade especially after seeing that giveaway to Kozlov, which might have saved Prucha from getting traded.

    64. DoodieMachetto on

      “yeah like he did with Lindros, Poti, Dunham, etc.”

      Lindros played well, he just got hurt.

      Dunham was a good goalie while he was around, he just had the misfortune on being on some of the worst Ranger teams, especially defensively, in the last 15 years.

      Poti, well, he was an all-star once? But the rest of the time, he was contributing to Dunham’s problem.

    65. “Prucha is around 5’11â€?”

      dude, if Prucha is 5’11”, then i’m 6’1″…

      i’m 5’9″, i met the guy, and i was looking down at him…

      AZ

    66. if Prucha is 5’7″ then Dawes is 5’2″

      “If you wanna pretend that Slats had total control… sure!!!
      Dolan had a lot to do with who came here!”

      yes he provided the infinite funding, other than that I doubt it.

      doodie, it doesn’t matter if they didn’t play bad, point is they were bad trades and we overpayed big time.

    67. BTW Prucha is listed everywhere as 6’0″, if all of them are off by more than an inch that would mean there is no credibility with anything regarding any hockey stats. Maybe Betts is really 35 years old, maybe Renney is born in Czech Republic, maybe Kasparaitis weights 190 pounds, etc.

      so stop with the nonsense please.

    68. vinny, you are right, Betts is 53 and Renney is born in China and you are the coach of the Rangers :)

    69. #1 – Stop being babies. I hate having to scroll through a billion comments about who’s insulting who to read some decent information.
      #2 – Prucha is most likely not getting traded. Have any of you ever been to rumor sites before? They will say the craziest information even if they heard some kid on the street making it up. Thats why its called a RUMOR. Why is everyone getting so worked up? As much as everyone hates him, I doubt Sather would do this. You do realize when you say Malik won’t get traded because he’s Jagr’s Czech buddy, you’re completely ignoring the fact that Prucha is also Czech and lives with Jagr. So if Jagr actually has any pull or say in the trades, then it’s not going to happen.

    70. Rangers are 5-2 on the road and 2-4 at home. Maybe they should request to have all games played on the road from now on. Stay in a hotel before games at MSG.

    71. Yeah I know thats the best way to get informed. Thats why I’m disagreeing with all this talk about Prucha getting traded because its coming from bogus sources.

    72. Wow, a new record, although given some of the posts, it’s not all that impressive.

      Someone asked about some ground rules. Here goes: let’s keep it civil, folks. I love some of the back and forth, and the occasional tangent is welcome. But again, the personal stuff has no place. I haven’t used it yet, but bear in mind I do have access to the delete button.

      Now, the Prucha trade, or the supposed Prucha trade. The Rangers say nothing’s going on, and I’m going to chalk up the rumors to just residual chatter from the other day. That’s not a guarantee, but put it this way: I’d be shocked otherwise.

    73. See Sam, this is why i removed comments from my blog, you need to be more of a narcisist like me, other people be damned :)

    74. I think this blog is the best because Sam doesn’t try to regulate it and doesn’t delete and edit posts. Freedom of speech is what it is all about, and you can’t get that in most places anymore. Hopefully Sam doesn’t turn into tyrannical nazi like some loser moderators do to justify their pathetic existance.

      this blog is free and nobody should be complaining about comments of anyone like some whiny spoiled kid.

    75. hockeymanrangers on

      Ranger fans how nice it is to see the boys actually coming off with some wins. But lets just see if they can stay consistant. I will have to see them continue some good consistant play. Keeping the hustle up and all the players playing defensively, it looks like the D (at this point) need all the help and incouragement they can get. I still think some of the bad play is due to the boys hearts are not into it. And when your hearts not there the hustle is not there. Renny as to push this and get them to the point where they are having some fun. Thats my read, on my boys so far, but they must continue I am not sure we are out of the woods yet. And I am one also a NY Ranger fan living out of NY but once your a Ranger fan your always a ranger fan cheers to the rangers KEEP IT UP.

    76. BTW, can somebody explain to me the logic behind giving Straka an “A” when he is mostly always on the ice when Jagr, who has a “C”, is on the ice.

    77. LOL!! I apologize Sam!!! You’re doing a great job… I see you also cover golf… No wonder you cover the Ranger so well!!!

      And Inferno – Always a trouble maker! lol

    78. a letter is mostly used to have someone on the ice to provide leadership and to talk to referees. so basically we got 2 lines without any “captain” and 1 line with 2 “captains”. But I am not surprised you find it normal.

    79. vinny…I tinhk he has an “A” because he is good in the locker room…and maybe a leader on the bench…you dont HAVE to have a leter on your jersy to talk to teh refs, if there are no “A’s” or a “C” on the ice somone jsut talks to the ref…but an “A” or “C” can leave teh bench and talk to teh ref withough a problem, just make a line change…what lines players are on should NOT be used in determining who gets what letters…but I do understand what you are saying to a point, its just that you shoudlnt take his “A” away just because he plays with the captain on the same line…I HOWEVER feel that Kasper would be better to have the “A” from straka if he gets back to the rangers and gets his game back…he palys hard and deservs it.

    80. Actually, in the rule book, your required to have either an A or C to talk to the ref. Yes, some refs will hear you if you talk to them, but just like Hollweg’s backtalk got him a double minor, as a rule, don’t talk to the ref unless you wear a letter. That said, I wouldn’t recommend giving out A’s to players on 4th or 3rd lines simply to spread the A’s around. As Wildcard points out, its his lockeroom and bench leadership that warrant the A. If someone needs to talk to the ref between plays the captain can always come off the bench to talk to the ref, unless there was an icing I guess.

    81. Sam,

      If nothing is going on why was Maloney scouting the BlackHawks on the Island the other night? And why have their scouts been following the team through the entire West Coast road trip?

      Something is going on. Maybe it’s not Prucha or Seabrook as the rumors say, but something is going on.

    82. Vinny, when you stop putting words in peoples mouth then maybe people could have a real conversation with you!

    83. I was thinkng Aaron Ward deserves at least an “A” and he is sometimes on the ice with the 3rd and 4th lines. As for the lockerroom leadership, I never heard that about Straka and you don’t need a letter to be a leader in the lockerroom.

      “Vinny, when you stop putting words in peoples mouth then maybe people could have a real conversation with you!”

      That is funny because I felt you were putting words in MY mouth.

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