Go west, young (and old) men

92

If the Rangers rang in the New Year as fun-loving hockey players have been known to do, you couldn’t tell it by their practice today. Held an hour earlier in order to make time for their long flight to Calgary, it was a spirited session for a team that is at least on stronger footing than it was a year ago.

Thanks to some number-crunching from our crack research staff — OK, it was me sifting through the media guide — we know the Rangers’ current record of 20-15-4 is only slightly better than their 19-17-4 mark on New Year’s Day last season. The difference is the general feeling this team might not need the dramatic overhaul that was required last year to push them over the hump.

That’s not to say roster moves won’t be made. Even Tom Renney said the team will use these next six weeks to gauge what, if anything they need by the trade deadline.

“Although the numbers suggest we’re pretty much at the same point, I feel better about this group moving forward into the second half of the year than I did last year,” Renney said. “I think we’ve got enough here to win, but these next six weeks are pretty important. We’ll see if we’ve got enough to get us over the top. We want to contend.”

But whereas last season there was a steady stream of trades and other moves — Avery for Ward, Dupuis for Hall, Mara for Ward, Jason Krog, Brad Isbister, Dan Girardi, Ryan Callahan — I don’t expect as much activity.

But that’s just now. I’m sure we’ll be revisiting the topic again. As for news:

  • Petr Prucha was back on the ice practicing with his left wrist in a wrap. He said his shot was only slightly affected by the bruise there, but he should be fine to play tomorrow in Calgary.
  • A number of players agreed this sort of three-in-four nights swing through Western Canada reinforces how much easier life is in the East, especially for a Rangers team that rarely leaves the Eastern Time Zone. “I think guys who have played in the East their whole career don’t have any idea. They complain about a three or four hour flight. That was the minimum when I was in LA,” Sean Avery said. “It felt like were always on a plane.”
  • The Winter Classic game today brings back memories for Stephen Valiquette, who was the backup goalie for Edmonton in the Heritage Classic in 2004. Talk about cold. It was 0 degrees, and Valiquette wore a ski hat over his helmet, and the Under Armour gear favored by football players. “With all that it actually wasn’t that bad,” he said.
  • Other than constantly remarking how tired I looked today (even if I pathetically didn’t make it to midnight last night), Brandon Dubinsky chimed in that he might have visitors from his junior days in Portland when the Rangers head to Vancouver. Unlike Sean Avery in Toronto, though, Dubinsky said he won’t even buy them tickets. “I’m too cheap,” he said.More later…
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    92 Comments

    1. So here’s my question…when our boys head to Philly, do they just get a few team busses or something? Limos? I never really knew.

    2. Some quick 2008 observations.

      Jagr is moving pretty fast now playing with Gomez. The north-south speed game frees Jagr up for more shots than the Nylander east-west waterbug style. Actually think Jagr would have trouble playing with Nylander at this point.

      Barring injury, I’m expecting big things from this line. Gomez is the catalyst that makes this line go. JJ appears to have bought into it and with Straka also skating well, that line is moving. Actually, with any good skating LW (not Hossa), the line would still be very effective. Could see Dawes, Prucha, Avery, Callahan fitting that role along with Straka.

      We don’t need another center. Dubi is promising, a good skater, not afraid to go to the net. He got good experience playing with JJ for awhile. He’ll be a good effective 3rd line center. Still needs to learn how to stay on his feet more, put the puck in the net, bulk up a bit, don’t look for fights, just hit and move on. Can’t afford him in the penalty box or laid out on the ice with another concussion. Leave the fighting to Orr.

      Gomez and Drury are going to show why the Rangers got them and Jagr and Shanny will both benefit because of that.

      Anyone see any realistic trades at the moment that would benefit the Rangers? I don’t at this point. Don’t see anybody wanting Malik, Mara or Hossa. Rozi is borderline, good shot but gives up the puck and guys get by him too often in the defensive zone. Dan Girardi has almost the same offensive ability as Rosival and will only get better so he can take over that role if Rozi gets traded. Wouldn’t trade anyone else at this point unless we can get a Pheneuf or Klesla back and that’s not going to happen.

      Valiquette so far as proven to be a capable backup and as long as both him and HL stay healthy, our goaltending should be fine the rest of the way.

    3. jagrforgovernor on

      lennynyr:

      I totally agree. I was watching the highlights online the other day, and Jags was in the defensive zone coming away with the puck from behind the net. He was moving so fast I thought the connection was messed up. Playing with Gomez and Straka will make Jagr better. I think Jagr needs a certain comfort level with his linemates, which I think Straka provides. Nylander was great for Jagr in some ways, but Gomez will help Jagr take the Rangers deeper into the playoffs I think.

      NYC and/or Philly don’t have the temps for outside hockey. If there was precip in either of these cities it’d most likely be rain. I’m hoping the NHL makes the outdoor game a rotating event every New Years Day. Toronto, Buffalo, Calgary, Colorado…. The Rangers could play TO or BUF next year and I’d take that over a Rangers/Philthy game. I’d prefer to keep this kind of event in a “hockey town” like Detroit or Buffalo and not move it to where it would turn into a corporate whore fest. That’s just me though….

      Happy New Year!

    4. Emrick is terrible. a joke. a good, capable play-by-play-guy like John Forslund is ten times better than squeaky-voice Mr. Peepers

    5. Hey Sam, that former UNH goaltender Ty Conklin did OK today in Buffalo. If not for having to listen to Emrick and Eddie O prattle on during the many “clean the snow off the ice” breaks, it was a fun game to watch. I had to laugh that Mike Milbury had the gall to claim that he was loved in NYC after Bob Costas asked him about the beat the fan with his own shoe incident at MSG. I’ve got a clue for Mike, the Ranger fans love him for how he screwed up the Islanders.

    6. wow not only does Dubinsky suck at hockey, he’s a cheap piece of you know what…still love this kid?

      I say trade or waive him.

    7. lenny – Rozy is too valuable to give up on for this season. we need 6 or more solid d men for a long playoff run. but I don’t see a long playoff run with Dubinsky as 3rd line center.

    8. I don’t know why everyone is hating on dubinsky he plays hard and will be a good player for a long time to come. He just needs to bulk up because he has a tendency of getting knocked off the puck.

    9. rangerfan 19 – he’ll be decent somewhere down the road. but our chances for the cup this year are diminshed. 2 scoring lines won’t cut it in the playoffs.

    10. Doodie Machetto on

      If Callahan could score a goal, that would be helpful also. When you are being outscored by Blair Betts, you know that you’ve gotta pick things up.

    11. I think everyone forgets how young some of these kids are sometimes. Dubinsky has a long way to go. The staff knows it, his teammates know it, why can’t some of you realize that 20, 21, 22 years old can’t show you the real caliber of a player? Guys like Crosby are an exception to the rule.

      Also – Just got back from the Winter Classic. AWESOME.

    12. Beer me – yes they’ll probably get better in some future yr. just don’t see a 3rd center with that little production (Betts or Dubinsky) in a yr we were allegedly going for the cup. On the other hand I’m totally sold on our young d men for this yr as well as the future.

    13. that guy who loves the rangers on

      All of this is fine and dandy but since it is past January 1st now, when will they sign Henrik to a long-term deal? If you haven’t already read the article on Blueshirts Blog, you should go read it now dealing with the same topic.

    14. Adam and his apple on

      i dunno bout you guys but im effin addicted to this blog and i dont think its updated as much as it should be, theres gotta be more tidbits, like who avery is bangin now, cmon sammy baby! hook a brotha up!!!!!

    15. Callahan has averaged 8:08 of ice time over his last 3 games….give me a break about picking on him…and dubie is playing great.

      My original idea at the start of the season was to play Hossa alongside Jagr because for the 15 game stretch he played on the top line he was good…that would allow straka to center the 3rd line and give us 3 good scoring lines…

      but sadly Hossa has decided to follow in the footsteps of the man who wears a #8 on the back of his jersey…

      =========

      Speaking of which….Larry Brooks gets mad at the MSG fans for booing Malik…while i agree that they are often impatient – Malik deserves everything he gets.

      they better not show brooks’ face on garden-vision anytime soon….

    16. and about dubie not being a good 3rd line center – this is probably coming from all the guys who wanted mike peca over the off-season and got pissed when the Rangers changed their minds…

      meanwhile he’s been put on the IR 2 times already this season…

    17. It is difficult to argue that the Rangers will NOT be making a Cup run with the line productivity the way it is now. A fourth line checking line that doesn’t score can be accepted if they are hitting and stifling the opponents top line. But to have an entire third line that simply never gets their name on the scoring sheet is unacceptable. I am a fan of Dubinsky, Prucha and Callahan individually but their productivity is simple disgusting no matter how little their ice time is. It would be impossible to believe that the Rangers will run for the cup relying on only two lines to put the puck in the net. They need changes.

    18. derf they would have been better off keeping Cullen, by moving Mara &/or Malik. Dubinsky could have used another year in Hartford. Peca wouldn’t have been a disaster, Dubinsky could have been called up to fill in.

    19. And just one other note about the lack of scoring. It is no coincidence that since Drury and Avery and some others have started crashing the net ruthlessly and parking right in front of it the puck started finding the back of the net. Scoring is a simple formula. Get players around the net and shoot the puck, if it doesn’t go in bang home the rebound. For games on end we have watched player after player cruise right past the crease without ever even pausing to take a breathe in front. Part of the reason is the small size of the Rangers, no one is big enough or brave enough to take the necessary abuse in front. Time to find the Adam Graves type player again. Dubinsky, Prucha, Callahan, Dawes and Hossa are not it. THEY NEED GRIT!

    20. I know that the 3rd line needs to produce more, and I agree that individually I like the players on the line, but likeability doesn’t put pucks in the net, as we all know.

      As much as this is a year to make a run at it, the team is stil rebuilding, and redefining itself. The only thing that really makes it a ‘cup run’ is that we have aging players in Jags, Shanny, & Straka. If any of those 3 doesn’t return next year, I think we’ll have to explore the FA market again. That type of scoring and playmaking ability isn’t quite present yet in the crop of youngsters coming up. BUT…eventually they’ll ready.

    21. Dr. Ogrodnick on

      What? No Lundqvist deal yet? There must be a rift between him and Sather. He’s obviously demanding 9 million. Were gonna lose him in free agency and have to start Montoya.

      Sorry, I just figured I’d get a jump start on the Lundqvist paranoia.

    22. An observation here, if you take a look at the current standings, just 3 points separate the team in the Atlantic Div. More competitive than any other division by a LONG shot. If the season ended today, all 5 teams in the Atlantic would be in.

    23. The general consensus among Rangers’ fans online is that Malik and Prucha are trade bait and will finish the season in a differnt uniform. I do agree that this team is stronger than last year’s team, but I would feel better if Malik, Prucha, and Hossa were gone.

    24. Half the Ranger fans online don’t know anything about hockey. I doubt you’ll see Prucha traded. Who would want Malik? Hossa? Come on now people, use your brains. If anyone’s job is in jeopardy, it’s Dubinsky. Not via trade, but he may find himself in Hartford if we bring in a 3rd line center (Yannic Perrault?). What he needs to start using is using those slick moves to get himself some time and space to dish to his wingers, who are way more adept at putting pucks in the net than he is.

    25. Rumors still alive, same rumor, different source. This is from The Hockey News (a bit more credible than eklund).

      http://www.thehockeynews.com/articles/12287-Rumor-Roundup-Rangers-and-Blue-Jackets-talking.html

      And prucha27 – you’ll definetly see some moves made. We have something like 7-8 UFA’s this year. If you don’t make moves, it’s a mistake. And there are teams out there that would take Malik. He’s not making much more $ the rest of the year, and we wouldn’t get much back. But it’s better than letting guys walk.

    26. Beer – I didn’t say there wouldn’t be moves, I said the players most fans want to see moved won’t be. Malik has no attributes other teams would want. Nor does Hossa. Prucha won’t be moved. He’s playing his best hockey of the year right now and had a huge game in Toronto, just got a vote of confidence from Renney. Prucha, Dawes and Callahan will be expected to contribute more next year when we lose Shanahan, Straka and maybe Jags. Can the former 3 replace the latter? No way, we’ll supplement with a UFA signing, I’m sure (Corey Perry signed to an offer sheet?). You don’t gear up for a a Cup run by trading for 3rd line wingers.

    27. Dubinksy is getting a bad rap here. He’s not the problem. If the top 2 lines perform and produce offense like they should the Rangers can win with Dubinsky as the 3rd line center.

    28. At this point, I don’t really see any team taking Malik/Hossa without Prucha being part of it. I’d go as far to say that he’s really the only guy worth trading for. Anyone else is just a ‘throw in’ player. I’m afraid of it backfiring on us, but I still see him being moved.

    29. Rob L. – you’re correct. Most of the people that complain about the 3rd line are the ones that begged for the kids to play in the 1st place. Dubinsky is just a kid. Its just impatience on part of some in the community. We’ve waited this long to be competitive…what’s another year or so!!

    30. Beer – The problem is that next year you lose Straka, Shanny and Jagr. Now, that’s fine, but if we’re serious about a Cup this year, the only upgrade among the forwards I see is Dawes taking Callahan’s spot and slightly upgrading the 3rd line center position.

    31. Well, we don’t know for sure that we’ve lost anyone. At this point it’s purely speculation and sounds more like your managing your fantasy team than an NHL team.

      Dawes and Prucha on the same line with Dubinsky will only get Dubinsky killed if he has to stick up for those 2 all the time! IMO, you can’t have 2 guys of that size on the same line. Barring injuries, the top 2 lines are set for the remainder of the season. That said, a deal that would send either Prucha or Dawes somewhere for a winger with a bit of size is exactly what we need for the playoffs. Again…my opinion.

      And I thought trading Gartner in ’94 was a mistake. But it worked out. Eventhough he went on to score another 100+ goals over the next 3 seasons. You have to give something up to get something back. Bottom line is, he’s the front-runner at this point to be shipped.

    32. I think it is this year or not for a very very long time.

      Shanahan will probably not be back. Jagr will probably decline. Other players will be lost because of their contract status. Once those key players are gone – and even with the other talent – Straka, Gomez, Drury, it will take some time to remake a CUP team.

      I think there may be a significant trade brewing that will equate to a strategy whereby the Rangers are going for it –and going for it now.

      I would HATE to see Prucha traded.

    33. Also, as far as The Big Man is concerned. We’ve seen what he can do when he gets on a streak. And with 43 games remaining, he needs 50 points to trigger his option. And at $9mil, I’d be shocked to see anyone turn it down. And I’d also have to believe that Straka’s decision has a lot to do with Jags’ decision. I think with Shanny, it all depends on how close we come.

    34. in 2008:

      We shed Malik and Mara through trading Prucha while he has value. Dawes and Dubi we keep, and they continue not scoring until next season. Jagr and Straka come back for one more year, too. Shanny goes back to Detroit for one final hurrah. We realize Cally will somehow never be the same after his knee injury. Slats makes a run at restricted AO, forcing Washington to pony up 9.5 per. Avery resigns but Dane Byers becomes the new town darling as he makes next year’s squad and proves to be a gritty, tough, talent — Hollweg if he didn’t suck. Rangers are a steady, excellent team next year, and make a serious run.

    35. Prucha27
      I like how you said half the Ranger fans on here dont know anything about hockey. Are you included in the that half? Having one good game against a pylon defense is hardly playing your best hockey of the year and Prucha didnt even play last game. Prucha played well he put in 2 pucks, but you can’t say he is playing his best hockey cause of one game…moron…ok back to real hockey talk instead of 5 yr old name calling.

      Malik could be moved, they love him in Carolina and Vancouver for some reason so if he is moved it will probably to one of those two places, especially with his hefty contract. First thing that needs to be done in the off-season is Avery needs to be resigned long term. The good thing is we have two building block players that you build a team around in Gomez and Drury, We have good young D-men and a possible big impact player coming within the next two years. Lets not forget HANK. We have good building blocks on this team. Would I trade Prucha? No I wouldn’t cause when he has confidence, he knows where to be on the ice. Focus should be made on getting rid of some dead weight. I dont have to tell all of you who the dead weight is obviously but i’d keep Prucha.

    36. IMO, Avery is the heart and soul of the Rangers. Sather cannot let this guy walk. Avery is only 26 years of age. Sather has to resign, Avery, Tutin, Girardi and lundqvist. The other UFA
      I would let walk. I don’t think the rangers are as close to being a cup contender like other people on this blog. The western conference has far better teams right now and for the rangers to mortgage there future by making trades would be foolish. I can see sather making a few small trades like RobZ stated to get rid of dead wood and free up some cap space.

    37. I would love it to see malick be sent any where along with hosser.I don’t want to see Prucha go.I hope jagr doesn’t hit his gurantees and we can go in a different and better direction and he can go to russia with love.I wish we could dump him now but nobody wants a potential cancer like him with his contract so next year is the earliest sorry to say

    38. Just got caught up reading the posts since the fun Toronto game. Something that I haven’t seen brought up is about Prucha’s first goal there. I am confused, and of course happy based on the result, as to why Avery was on the ice there. The announcers didn’t mention it, but looking at the play, for some reason Jagr did not come onto the ice with the rest of his power play unit. Obviously, that can’t be a regular thing, but at least we know Avery can capably pass on the power play, though he’s not so good at shooting as seen earlier in the season.

      For those of you wondering what took so long to find these lines, this is the first stretch since the first game that the team has been fully healthy. Of course injuries are expected, but the players actually have to be there to be tried out, especially with two new players who are pegged to play important roles.

      I can’t see any trades until the actual deadline when there is a great frenzy and there is probably a better chance to get value for our bad players, especially since a lower amount of salary is due as you go later in the season. Plus, teams will be looking for quick fixes more, especially as players they targeted get traded elsewhere. As others, I like the players on the third line, just not the way they are playing. Personally, I would let slide, since they are gritty, but the only way the scoring can be fixed through trade is to probably trade for two players to replace Dubinsky and Callahan, and that just isn’t happening, especially under salary cap restraints.

      A big issue I have is still only using two pairs of forwards on the penalty kill. Sure, they are doing great, but it will serve well to cut down the ice time of the three not named Betts, since they also play on the power play. I know Callahan has played a little PK with the Rangers, and Avery has been slotted back there since returning, so find three combinations to use. I guess I just contradicted myself, since there are 2 1/2 pairs right now, but Avery definitely could be used more, since he has done a good job. I could see Dubinsky playing back there, as well, and we definitely need someone if Straka, Shanahan, or Avery get injured again.

      Happy new year! I hope everyone can find the game on MSG2 tonight, or just wait until the Knicks are over and watch the final two periods. At this point, I’m surprised the Rangers don’t get first priority on the mothership. They would have to be getting higher ratings now, right? I don’t like to watch much regular season basketball, but I know a lot of people do, but how can fans actually watch this anymore, especially when there is another local option in the Nets.

    39. Doodie Machetto on

      Trading Prucha is a mistake. Dubsinky I wouldn’t mind letting go because we have two top centers locked up for 5 years, and to think we won’t come across another decent center by then is ludicrous (We already have one in Anisimov, and potentially another in Pyatt). But the only thing I would take in return is a big (like Marcel Hossa) power forward (unlike Marcel Hossa) that scores goals (REALLY unlike Marcel Hossa).

    40. Doodie Machetto on

      “The announcers didn’t mention it, but looking at the play, for some reason Jagr did not come onto the ice with the rest of his power play unit.”

      Jagr had an equipment problem.

    41. TomG
      Though I respect your opininon regarding the Rangers being a contender, I disagree. We can play the D-game like the western conference teams do, but We have tremendous leadership on this team. Shanny, Gomer, Dru and Jags. No one can throw a group like that at us. Also Hank is no slouch either.

    42. I think a Prucha deal COULD be a mistake. However, if that’s the guy that teams want, and we NEED something they have, then that’s the deal that will need to be made. If it came down to it…deal prucha, or go down the stretch and into the postseason with the current roster, which would you choose?

      And speaking of the PK, I LOVE that Staal is seeing time there. In daily reading, I also see that Renney is soon preparing to get him on the PP somewhere too. It’s awesome to see a player with that potential start his career.

    43. I hate to be down on our guys but Malik and Hossa are just not tradable. Malik skates like his hamstrings have been severed and on top of that he telegraphs all of his breakout passes. As for Hossa, I go back to the golfing line: “I’ve seen better hands on a snake.”

    44. I think trading Prucha and Dubinsky would be a mistake. Once Dubinsky puts on some muscle and weight he could turn into a Rod Brind’Amour type of center down the road.

      Once Shanahan and Straka are gone Prucha will be able to get top line minutes and produce like he did 2 years ago when he had more ice time.

    45. dubinsky is only 20 years of age. This is the problem in the past with the rangers organization, not giving young players a chance to develop in the nhl. The team that shows how to develop young talent and is patient doing so is the Red wings.
      The red wings every year are one of the Elite teams in the nhl. The rangers are now healthy for the first time in a while. lets let them play and see how good the rangers really are now that they are healthy.

    46. Doodie Machetto on

      TomG, I see your point, I’m just looking to the fact that we have a potential log jam at center, thus making a center potentially expendable. The thing is, while I say trading Dubinsky would be OK with me, the return I would want is unreasonable, and the deal could never be made to my satisfaction (short of a fire sale like we had back in 04).

    47. TomG – No agruement here that DET is a powerhouse year after year. And the way they’ve been constructed. However, the only guy on that team that makes over $7mil is Lidstrom. Watching a DET broadcast a few weeks ago they actually mentioned the fact that the majority of the players there would rather make less than market value and be successful. (Zetterberg makes 2.5m, Holmstrom 2.2m) Something we have really never seen in NY, with Hank’s 1-year deal excluded, cause he’ll be cashing in shortly.

      The same can be said about NJ. They won championships in large part by filtering in ‘home-grown’ players. And sprinkle in a FA here and there.

    48. RobZ – Can’t imagine why you’d feel insulted that I said half the Ranger fans online are morons, unless you’re one of the morons, which apparently you are.

      Don’t misquote me. What I said is that Prucha had been playing his best HOCKEY (not one game) of the season. It resulted in him scoring those 2 goals in Toronto. If you watched games, you’d see he’s been getting more chances lately, and they were bound to go in. By the way, he didn’t play in the last game because he was hurt, not because he was a healthy scratch.

      As for Carolina and Vancouver, you really don’t know what you’re saying there. They definitely don’t love him in either of those places, and they were all to happy to see him go. Carolina and Vancouver have very mobile defensemen at the moment, so aside from injury, what would either want with Malik?

    49. All I can say about the Red Wings is, show me the friggin Cup. Those guys blaze through their side of the League year-in and year-out and have won like what, 1 Cup in the last 7 years. (Yes, they were on fire in 96/7 and 97/8, but those were the Bowman years.) Didn’t they fold to Nashville like last year or the year before as the #1 seed? I think yes cuz they killed my playoff bracket!

      On the Gartner trade, all I can say is this: We traded him to Toronto and got Glenn Anderson, an integral part of the Cup run!

      There were stories lately of Daniel Vyborny coming to the Rangers….for whom? Anyone know? I think that guy is the best player in history on a crap team. No thanks. Unless it was for Malik straight up.

      On the young kids, guys we gotta have patience. People calling for Dubinsky’s head already? He’s 20 yrs old. Give me a break! You same people were probably saying after 10 games to get rid of Gomer and Drury.

      Relax people! We need to go on a run here and start playing good hockey. To think we are in the middle of the playoff pack and we have been playing B or B- hockey, means that we hopefully have our best hockey ahead of us.

      There is a lot of parity in the league right now. I don’t know a single team that I am scared of playing 7 games against in our conference. We just need to get hot.

      Remember last year we played our best hockey after Xmas.

      LGR!

      P.S. I am not NEWMAN on this blog. Someone pinched my name. I am New Newman

    50. Because I love to talk about my boy Mike Gartner. The point I was trying to get to in just a few words(that I guess I didn’t) was that he did score another 100+ goals after we traded him. He and Anderson both scored 2/3 GWG’s in that years playoffs. Its undeniable that Anderson played a role in winning the cup. But the parallel I wanted to draw was that Gartner was producing as he always had and we had to deal him to pick up a piece of the puzzle. Much like any player is expendable when you’re really serious about going after the cup. Be it prucha, callahan, dubinsky, or anyone on the roster.

    51. New Newman,

      Is anyone really talking crap about Dubi? Or are they saying he’s either:

      1) an asset(that’s positive) that another team might exchange for something we need more (bruiser D? 3rd line actual goal production?)

      and/or

      2) that maybe he’s still in need of some AHL time to continue his growth?

      No one seems to be really suggesting he’s a bust. No one is calling for his head. But, let’s be honest, when you’re a prospect you have to excel during limited time. Dubi and Cally have had more than their share of time to shine and they haven’t maxed out that opportunity. Wish they would do more from now on, no matter how limited their ice time. My opinion.

    52. Beer Me! – There’s no reason to think that Gartner wouldn’t have played as big a role as Andersen. It’s all speculation, that’s why those moves were so risky. I think the Gartner for Anderson trade was a wash. Weight for MacTavish and Amonte for Noonan and Matteau were more integral.

    53. Oh, totally. Any trade is a gamble. With the exception of salary dumps. Going either direction. Like Carter for Jagr, or Ulanov for BURE!

    54. Regarding the Gartner for Anderson deal, Gartner was not a Keenan type player as i am sure most of you know. Anderson wans more a bigger body who had the go to the net mentality while gartner likes to use his skill to score. Matteau, Anderson, Noonon all of those guys were winners along the boards, playoff type players. Amonte, Weight and Gartner were good skill players, but Keenan wanted those bigger bodies. Thats why those trades were made.

    55. Andrew – We know why the trades were made. But it’s still up for debate as to whether or not they were necessary. We’ll never know.

    56. Dr. Ogrodnick on

      Anyone catch Anisimov’s beautiful back hand feed to set up Russia’s 3rd goal?

      Cherepanov drove hard to the net and set the screen for Russia’s first goal. He has also drawn two penalties and has looked dominant at times. He wasn’t able to bury the breakaway though.

    57. Prucha27….here is why the Gartner for Anderson trade was not a wash (I will put it in question format): How many Cups has Gartner won in his career and how many has Anderson won?

      One other thing: Teams with salary cap issues might want a guy like Hossa.

      But the bottom line in trading around the deadline is, “Can my team win a Cup now? If not, what do I need to get there?”

      Chris F., I didn’t read through every entry above and previously (I have been away), but countless times on this blog this past year there were people pissing negative energy all around on Drury, Gomer, Shanny, Straka only to stick their collective feet in their mouths, asses, or any other orafices they could find. The bottom line is that we need to cultivate talent, not bash it at every opportunity.

      Dubi has some great hands and likes to mix it up. He makes some boneheaded plays that show his inexperience. He could be good trade bait as we seem to have some deep talent at center, esp with Gomer and Drury being as young as they are. But to rip Dubi because he was told to be a #1 center alongside arguably the best player of the last 5 years (who incidentally is not the easiest player to play with) is kind of misplaced, in my view.

      Dubi needs some seasoning. He could probably do with a little more time in the minors. But he needs to be able to go out and be creative and mix it up. But with only a few handfuls of games in the pros at 20 yrs or something, the guy is yet to prove his mettle. Martin St. Louis only hit his stride when he was 27 or something.

      Anyway, Happy New Year to everyone. Glad the banter is alive and well on this site.

      I expect there to be a lot of hitting tonight. Would love to see Orr vs Phaneuf, btw!

    58. Beer Me! – That is great to hear that Staal may be ready for the power play soon. I have been clamoring for it to happen. How was the game in Buffalo? All you have said so fair is “awesome,” any more details?

      There’s no reason why Dubinsky or Anisimov or anybody couldn’t be moved to a wing. I think Dubinsky would make a fine left wing on this team. Out of the three positions, most good prospect forwards come from the center position, like Callahan and Prucha, so plenty have to be moved.

      Sure, trading Prucha may help our run this year, but it would definitely kill us next season. At the rate he has scored in his first two seasons, he has shown talent, and signing him for only $1.6 million was a bargain. So far this year he has been making it look overpriced, but he’s just been in a rut, I would think. There’s no reason to trade him any time during this season. I’m torn on putting Callahan in Hartford because he brings so much hustle and energy to the third line, and I don’t think Dawes could duplicate that, and certainly Hossa couldn’t.

    59. It looks like this is the lineup for MSG2 tonight, though I would look on channel 51 (TV Guide Channel) if you have TWC in NYC since there is no FSN NY 2 tonight; it says 60 (CSPAN2). As I said before, good luck on finding it in time! Looks like only two more after this one.

      http://www.nyoverflow.com/b.html

    60. Ahhh! Forgot to mention, Henrik should be a lock for the All-Star Game at this point because he is leading the *East* in GAA. Although, Hasek led the whole league last year, I believe, but he didn’t make it.

    61. Spiderpig

      Thanks for that link!

      Just moved back to Manhattan Sunday and am clueless to channels at this point.

      Do Rangers games on MSG when team is on the road ever get broadcasted in HD?
      Is there an MSG2 in HD? (I know i’m pushing it)

    62. New Newman – There are plenty of players who won more cups than Gartner, doesn’t make them a better player.

    63. BlueClue – If the away arena is set up for HD, then the games are broadcast in HD. Depends on the rink.

    64. the outdoor game in Buffalo yesterday got a 2.6 national rating and a 5 share. it is the highest rating for a regular season NHL game since 1996. and obviously, the ratings would have been even higher if they had not gone up against football bowl games, which hurt them in Michigan.

      “””””””

      Top Ten Metered Markets:
      1. Buffalo 38.2/58
      2. Pittsburgh 17.7/30
      3. Minneapolis 5.1/11
      4. Denver 3.7/7
      T5. Providence 3.5/7
      T5. Las Vegas 3.5/6
      7. St. Louis 3.3/5
      8. Boston 3.2/6
      9. Sacramento 2.9/6
      T10. Richmond 2.8/5
      T10. Hartford 2.8/5

      “The best regular season rating in more than a decade is a result of the tremendous efforts of the NHL and we’re delighted by the success of this historic event,” said Ken Schanzer, President, NBC Sports. “Sam Flood, his production team and our broadcasters also deserve credit for conveying the great atmosphere in Buffalo and producing a memorable broadcast. The Winter Classic exposed hockey to a larger audience and definitely made new fans of the game.”

      Eddie Olczyk, NBC’s NHL game analyst said: “This was one of the best events I’ve ever been a part of as a player, coach or broadcaster. It truly was a memorable experience and a great day for the sport of hockey.”

    65. Nope. But the game will also be broadcast on MSGHD when the Knick game is over. Also, don’t be surprised if Calgary isn’t HD wired. Toronto isn’t, nor is Ottawa.

    66. I noticed on the cablevision Guide Channel, that the game is on-air at 10:00pm to only 11:30 p.m on MSG2 (channel 14).

      What does that mean – switch to MSG at 11:30?

    67. Regular MSG, channel 27 in nyc will switch to the Rangers game at 10:00pm after the knicks game as will MSG HD channel 727 at 10pm.

      Otherwise, the game will start on Channel 60 which is normally CSPAN2 at 9pm, the regular start time.

    68. Prucha27 it really irks the hell out of me when you spew your opinions over facts. You have done it in the past and you are starting the year off just like you did last year.

      You are talking about a trade at a deadline where we lost Gartner (0 Cups in his career) and got Glenn Anderson (5 or 6 Cups) so clearly the trade was not a wash. In fact I am betting that Anderson’s #s are as good as or better than Gartner’s over his entire career and $1mm says he has better playoff #s than Gartner. IF the #s are similar and Anderson has 5 or 6 more Cups than Gartner, there is no argument. Anderson is a better player because he makes everyone around him better.

      I was not talking about who was a better player in the stats column. In fact, F that, yes I am. Glenn Anderson was a better player than Gartner over his career. Add to that the fact that I was talking about a trade to win the Cup, which we did. No way was it a wash.

      Anyone who knows hockey would agree.

      You make these statements and they are often silly and then you try to defend them.

      Just say you made a mistake. Any Ranger fan who has been watching them for more than a week knows that Glenn Anderson for Gartner was 100% a fantastic trade for the Rangers. You said it was a wash. Only you would agree with that statement.

    69. If we are going to make a run at the Cup this year a line of Prucha Dubi Cally is going to need to produce good numbers. They are also a very small line and in the playoffs thats not a good thing. Bringing in a bigger body at the deadline for that line wouldnt be a bad idea if you ask me. And i know this is crazy and im not saying i agree with it but im throwing it out there…if we are a top 4 team in the East, with a legitimate shot at the Cup come the deadline, do we deal away Prucha and more for a Kieth Tkachuk type player? I would if it meant a cup but i dont think hes the right player for this team.

    70. Dr. Ogrodnick on

      Anderson was pretty useless in the 94 playoffs, and at one point was in danger of being scratched by Keenan.

    71. I didn’t want Peca but wanted to keep Cullen and get rid of malik or Mara for the cap. If rennet ysed Cullen properly we would have a much bette r3rd line than we do now in addition to pp point duty and pk. Our chances to win the cup with the 3rd and 4th line as currently constructed are very low. And this was supposed to be our time to go for it.

      This is not about how Dubinsky will be at age 24 (he’ll be an ok 3rd center then – not top 2 lines in my opinion)

      Vince what is wrong with you re the cancer remark. You’re old enough to know better.

    72. LIjoe, It is just a statement has nothing to do with anyone with real cancer. Please get off my back about all this politically correct crap. This isn’t BB and dubi and that jerk jess aren’t here to back you so leave me alone .Go back to bb where dubi rules his kingdom like it is Mr Roberts neighborhood if you can’t take it.

    73. Vincea it Mr Rodgers or Roberts? It’s a beautiful day in the BB moderated neighborhood. BB stands for 2x ( double) standards. The leaders either start or react , & then get a gang war going. Then ask for peace by shutting down comments. BB is the home of deciding PC.

    74. LMAO, Yeah I think it is Mr Rodgers. Never watched that lame show . Thanks for the correction Imagination.

    75. vince I don’t need Dubi or Jess to back me on anything. just knock off the cancer references. it just shows you in a bad way.

    76. LI JOE, If someone you know or you yourself have cancer I am truely sorry. Using the word in reference to jagr has been done in the post and the daily news and it is not done to demean anyone with cancer,all it means is that his attitude and sulking can eat at a team and ruin it. Again if you have had persoal dealings with that terrible disease I am truely sorry.

    77. vince – thanks. my mom is a breast cancer survivor but it was very scary. heart disease is what does most of my family in. I’m not a pc type of person normally but the word cancer definitely scares and offends me. so again thanks for the post right above mine.

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