You tell me (if I should tell you)


As much as I try to avoid it, I get a lot of questions in the comments section that I never get around to answering.

There are two reasons for this: because I am a dimwit and I don’t know the answer; or because I’m a dimwit and I do know the answer (or at least can give you something in the way of information) and just forgot to respond.

With that in mind, I’m toying with the idea of regularly setting aside time to respond to questions about the team, hockey in general, and of course how I manage to be so effortlessly stylish (OK, I’m pretty sure there will be NO questions of this sort, but I figured I’d throw it out there anyway).

Anyway, I haven’t really worked out the details, other than you throw me questions, and then I respond in a Q-and-A format. Since some would invariably be the same, I’ll pick the best questions of the week and go from there. But before we go any further with the process, let me first ask if this is something that’s at all worthwhile. I’ll tell you flat out that I won’t have an answer to every question, and unless I have something definitive, I’m not going to respond to rumors.

Either way, I’d still try to respond to questions when I get them. But this might be a fun sort of clearinghouse. So you tell me. If you like the idea, we’ll go from there. And to answer your first question, I always wear a brown belt with brown shoes….

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  1. Robby Bonfire on

    Great idea, Sam. Maybe you can address the following, when you activate the format…

    I was wondering, earlier today, why Valiquette, a veteran, is a cheaper option than Montoya, a rookie, when he gets to the NHL? How can a rookie, any rookie, have a prohibitively expensive contract which precludes his club promoting him in timely fashion, and mandates the club seriously consider trading him? What part of the CBA covers this? A rookie putting a team over the cap? I don’t get it.

  2. bonfire – answer – since he was drafted so high there were easy bonuses for him at the nhl level that makes his salary + bonuses at approx $ 1.8 mm

    Sam – 2 questions
    1) are you really Vinny Pooh aka Yenner
    2) does Avery’s salary count vs the cap while he’s on the injured list

  3. that guy who loves the rangers on

    i think its an awesome idea. and my one question is why does Eklund keeping posting that crap about JOVO coming to NY, which to me would be just as dumb or dumber than the Isles trading away Luongo.

  4. Sam what so new about that? You have responded or made comments here with your name underlined, which the imposters can’t do. My question is what’s really up with Mara? Putting Strudwick in his spot probably weakens the team on O&D, & Mara can stand up for his teamates similarly to Strudwick?

  5. Patrick Hoffman on


    This is a great idea as you know that most of us fans come up with at least five questions a day regarding the team, the lines and of course, what you are doing with your life.

    Your Friend,

    Pat Hoffman

  6. Jeff Traverso on

    That would be great. The beat writer blogs are the best thing that has happened to Ranger fans in years – since the papers treat us like a group activity instead of a professional sport, Q&A would be much appreciated.

  7. Robby Bonfire on

    Thanks for the answer to my question, Joe.

    I might go on to observe than any agreement, which inhibits the timely promotion of organizational prospects, is inherently bad for the game/business. Signing bonuses should not count against the cap, especially considering that many recipients of these bonuses will not make the grade at the NHL level, just as some low-round draft picks will over-achieve and surprise. Signing bonuses have a history of spiraling out of control, in all sports. I remember the Phillies passed on signing J.D. Drew because Scott Boras, his agent, wanted to raise the then record bonus amount from 2 million to 11 million, most of which the Cardinals eventually caved-in to paying. This cancer, now evident in hockey, is really hurting the game.

  8. Sam, I agree this is a good idea. Some of the best comments over the year have been questions to you.

  9. czechthemout!!!!! on

    I have been trying very hard to give Renney my benefit of the doubt,but as much as i try,i can’t sit quietly and not comment when i see the ridiculous decisions he makes.His mind boggling obsession with Hossa,his stubborness in not playing Matt Cullenon the point eeven though he was so good there with the canes.his insistance on playing Betts on the third line even though he has a handfull of assists in his career,with two players who have scoring ability and know one to feed them the puck!His insistance on playing Kevin Weeks and calling him his number one goalie even though he was outplayed by the king.Only Week’s injury forced Renney to play Lundquist,who than prceeded to cement with his obviously superior play his status as the rightfull number one.Last year,injuries forced him to call up and play to great succsess Dan Girardi and Ryan Callahan,and to a lesser extent Brandon Dubinsky.These moves came only after all possible castoffs of other teams were tried and failed miserably.And now we are getting Jason Strudwick forced on us.He of the slow skating,lack of proper positioning,and zero offense.We are being told that this is being done because the comfort level the coach has in said scrub defenseman’s abilit to offer tuteledge to a prospect who by my visual account already has outplayed and shown more hockey sense than said scrub dman.This is happening because apparently Paul Mara,who played very well with Mark Staal the last two periods in the first game,dared to stick up for his team mates and got a penalty for it.Never mind that Paul Mara played exceptionaly well last year after his aquisition from Boston.Apparently the “money in the bank”that Rachunek earned last year at Pock’s expense does not extend to Mara.I guess it also does not matter that this team has very little as far as offensivley capable defensemen who can shoot the puck from the point.It doesn’t matter that Mara gives us a better chance to win than a dman who no one even offered a tryout to.What matters is that this “coach” who is at best a below average coach will Never be able to help guide this team to a stanley cup,and that is a shame!

  10. Sam,

    Would you consider putting a time stamp along with your posts? It would help provide context. Thanks.

  11. Q&A would be a great idea. I’d like to see it get off the ground.

    1 question to start: How the hell would you filter out all of the B.S. stupidity and garbage that has taken over the comments section, and would certainly become a problem in Q&A?

  12. Czech

    Seems strange from the outside looking in.
    But last season, Hossa was pretty good playing with

    There has to be something else beneath the surface as well, such as Jagr wanting and requesting him on that line.
    I just don’t see Straka connecting with Jagr that well anymore. Someone pointed out earleir how Jagr led the NHL last season in give-aways.
    With Hossa able to remedy that with his undisputable puck possession skills combined with Drury’s ability to make the pass, that line should be darn good IMO.
    We’ll just have to wait and see….

  13. semi- free speech on

    “it is a condition of your use of the comment features associated with the blogs that you do not: Use the site to post or transmit any unlawful, threatening, abusive, libelous, defamatory, obscene, vulgar, pornographic, profane or indecent information of any kind,”

    Malik is a____________

    ( crickets chirping )

  14. CTO – Weekes was injured early in 2005. Lundqvist was pretty much the number one since he took over then. I don’t see your gripe there. You sound like Bonfire n that injuries don’t count to let prospects play. I think the mind-boggling obsession is with Strudwick more than Hossa, because Hossa actually ahs multiple skills at what he does.

    Sam, a weekly Q&A might be untimely. Could you just post responses in each thread instead, as you have done in the past? Or maybe during pregame/postgame.

    LI Joe – Avery’s salary counts against the cap as long as it is not a “long-term injury” which means half of the season, I believe.

    whoa – There is a time stamp, when you click on the post to see comments. I do agree that it should be shown on the front page as well, though.

  15. Spiderpig

    In regard to Weekes, the annoying thing was that even after Hank outplayed him majorly, Renney still claimed when asked that Weekes is the Team’s #1 Goalie.

    Any sane coach would realize that while Weekes can be effective somewhat, he is no first string goaltender. The skills just aren’t there.

    The whole Strudwick thing is simply mind boggling…makes no sense at all. Guy needs a one way ticket to some far away pond.

  16. blueclue,
    renney wasnt gonna throw the guy under the bus after he was outperformed and he shouldnt have. weekes was brought in to be the starting goalie and he got injured and lost his job that way, who knew if lundqvist would have had a few good games and then sucked, it wouldnt be the first time or the last that has happened in this league. renney protected his player and that should be a good thing.

  17. RE: The Islanders

    The other night when they lost 2-1 vs. Caps, Washington only registered 12 SOG all game. DP let in 2 out of 12. When’s the last time there was such a low shot count?

    The game tomorrow night is being broadcast in HD on Versus.
    The preview says Simon is playing.
    Is this true?

  18. jason

    Renney should have simply said what any normal NHL coach would say.

    “We have 2 solid options at Goaltender and at the moment, we will ride the great play of Lundqvist”-

  19. Yes Sam, good idea..

    By the way… has anyone noticed a *certain someone* has not been around for a couple days?

    Have our prayers quietly been answered? That would be huge.

  20. Great idea.

    If you are looking at how to format things you might want to check out a couple of soccer writer/bloggers for ideas.

    Steve Goff of the wapo uses a “live chat” format:

    While more locally Ives Galarcep of the Herald News uses a format like you described where readers leave questions in the comments to a post and then he gives his answers in a follow up post:

    In any case keep up the good work.

  21. Sam – a good idea. Maybe you can set it up the way Blueshirt Bulletin did their roundtable Q&A.

    My question is, what do you think it is going to take for Tyutin and Girardi to move ahead of Malikival in the pecking order?

    Also, what do you think Renney means when he talks about players needing to be “succinct”?

  22. jason – Is it really that short? I don’t believe it, lol.

    Simon should be serving the last game of his suspension today, as I believe it is the Isles’ fourth game.

  23. Good idea Sam.
    It seems we all have lots of questions – and some of us have answers to other people’s questions too.

    Robby- RE bonuses – it could be worse – the team could get hit with the bonus for the first season instead of it being spread over the course of the contract. I would think the best solution is to not count the bonus against the cap for players under 25 – this way if a team is tight against the cap it can call-up any rookies – and not worry about the high 1st round picks with big bonuses. This would definately remove one reason for Montoya not getting to play with the big boys.

  24. Right on, UKRanger. Regrettably agents, unions, networks, and advertisers run professional sports, today, and the best interest of the respective leagues and the fans who pay the freight is not something they even remotely consider.

  25. Why are they messing with Dubinsky at the beginning of the season? He was dropped (it seems) to fourth line with Betts moving into his spot on third line. Why can’t Renney give a energetic kid the opportunity against a crappy team like the Islanders? He’s tough and scrappy which could also help. I don’t get it…

  26. pemoco – although i can not answer your question as well as Sam could, I have heard on more than one occassion that Malik and Roszival are the number one tandem because of how they play with Jagr. He is comfortable with the two of them and likes how they work together.

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