Is there a lesson to be learned?

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When a certain style flourishes in the Stanley Cup playoffs, there are always repercussions felt around the league. Just look at recent history.

When the up-tempo Hurricanes won the Cup in 2006, many teams — the Rangers included — saw the merit in having their defensemen join the attack the following season. But seeing how the Rangers didn’t necessarily have the personnel at the time to fit the style — Sandis Ozolinsh, anyone? — the results were occasionally disastrous.

The next year, the smash-and-bash ’em Ducks powered their way through the Finals, and suddenly everyone felt the need to get bigger and nastier.

Now the puck-possession Red Wings are having their way with the Penguins, and it’ll be interesting to see if there’s another knee-jerk reaction around the league.

Of course, this might be the most difficult team to mimic seeing how the Wings at their core are mostly just a scary collection of talent. But believe it or not, their emphasis on keeping the puck low in the zone and away from the opposition isn’t far off from what the Rangers have been attempting the last few seasons as well.

Again, the difference is the Red Wings have the two-way players who can pull the style off. The Rangers, meanwhile, were defined by sequences this season when they’d control play for minutes on end, not score, and then surrender a costly odd-man rush the other way.

How this plays into the Rangers off-season plans remains to be seen. Naturally one solution is to find some guys who can finish. The other is to make sure you find both forward and defensemen mobile enough to play at both ends of the rink.

It all sounds good in theory, of course. Grabbing hold of those players might not be as easy.

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60 Comments

  1. There has to be an adjustment in coaching.. whether it’s change of style or personnel. With the money invested into this team, and with the talent it has possessed, it’s embarrassing that an Original 6 team cannot pass the second round.

    I can accept a defensive system 5 on 5, but in the “new” NHL, it’s all about special teams.. look where that got Pittsburgh and Philly.

    Detroit’s system is just superior, so there’s no way to mimic that unless you replace the entire organization with theirs.

    This team doesn’t necessarily need a bruiser, but it needs defensemen who are responsible with the damn puck. No more Malik and Rozsival gaffes… it’s just too painful to watch.

    The power play, as we all know, is an absolute joke. There needs to be less passing to Jagr and more shooting on goal, not wide, Rozsival.

    This core of UFA’s is weak on offense, but strong on puck-moving d-men.

    Is Redden good? Yes. Can we afford him? No. Same with Campbell (although Campbell is atrocious defensively). Guys like Liles and Hainsey might actually be affordable because their names are not Redden, Campbell or Orpik.

    The other big piece of the puzzle is Jagr… the team revolves around him. How many players currently in the NHL can draw as much attention as Jagr does, but still get the production? Not many. If Jagr leaves, then this team has a huge gap to fill.

    At least we know our goaltending is solid, and we’re waist-deep in centers.. Staal is going to be a superstar as well!

    July 1st can’t come soon enough.

    Go Wings!

  2. I didn’t think I’d watch much of the Finals but so far I’ve enjoyed watching the Pens get shut out 2 straight games…

    I’ve also realized that there is no way in hell the Rangers could have beat either of these teams…

  3. Sam,
    Great think piece. I saw an article or interview with Brian Burke, who said when he came in as GM, he wanted to build the Ducks team on the 80’s Isles team model,(sorry for the reference, people) that could win several different ways, whether it be a tight checking game, an up tempo game, an old school Eddie Shore bloodontheice game etc.. knowing that each round of playoff hockey is different, and each game has it’s own complexion. I think the Canes could do that in their run and the Wings are definitely built that way, despite the loads of talent they have. Their top two offensive players are also VERY responsible defensively and their grit lines are capable of sustaining pressure and scoring. All three teams, the Canes, Ducks & now Detroit have had team speed and a hot goalie as well.

  4. One thing to look at in that scenario though is that even though teams have scrambled every year to model themselves after last year’s winner, none of those teams has gone on to win the cup the next year… When teams were modeling themselves after an uptempo Carolina team, it was the brusiing ducks that won it by smashing the uptempo teams and so on… so maybe the best thing to do is NOT try to model anything after this year’s winner

  5. Re DanNYC,

    Dan is correct. the red wings have been successful for seemingly forever. ok, they haven’t won the cup in a few years but osgood backstopped the wings to the cup in 1998! that’s 10 years ago. (hasek was the #1 goalie when they won in 2002). the wings have been a very good competitive team for 1basically the last decade. sure, they won the president’s trophy a few times and choked in the 1st round, but i’ll take a very good playoff team for a decade over a team that plays in fits and starts during the regular season and ends up with a 5th seed.

    So, have the wings really changed all that much during the past 10 years? i don’t really think so. they manage to bring in crazy good talent, while keeping just enough veteran leadership. and they seemingly never have to ‘rebuild’.

  6. One of the biggest secrets to Detroit’s success is their drafting… They’ve had low, lousy draft picks for the past decade, and they’ve still gotten complete steals in just about every draft. Their scouting should get the most recognition in that organization. They do an embarrassingly good job.

  7. “One thing to look at in that scenario though is that even though teams have scrambled every year to model themselves after last year’s winner, none of those teams has gone on to win the cup the next year… When teams were modeling themselves after an uptempo Carolina team, it was the brusiing ducks that won it by smashing the uptempo teams and so on… so maybe the best thing to do is NOT try to model anything after this year’s winner”

    Thats true, but the Wings have been good for the last 15+ years. Also lets not forget how Carolina lost Cullen and Ward to us and also had numerous guys like Cole and Stillman miss significant time the year after they won the cup. The Ducks missed Selanne and Niedermeyer for half the year thsi year but turned things on with them in the lineup. The Wings on the other hand have been up in the tops of the league for a long time now. Their drafting and scouting is really amazing and Ken Holland’s growth as a GM is pretty awesome to follow since he started out scouting for the team and then moving into other positions.

    They key as I said before in the last post is that its not so much the players skills on the Wings, since Brad Stuart really wasn’t anything special since he left SJ. Same with Mikael Samuelsson when he was here in NY. The difference in Detroit is that they have guys, especially their “star” players that are 100% willing to give into the team’s system employed by Babcock. We don’t have those players. We have some, but no way in hell Jagr or Shanny is ever going to go out of their usual playing style in order to make that sacrifice for the team. Both gave in a decent amount, but didn’t give in 100% to going in and checking hard then dropping back and backchecking hard. Plus our coaches (or at least the players) kind of made them the centerpiece of the PP just because they are 600 goal scorers and guys didn’t want to shoot the puck because they felt obligated to pass it to them.

  8. Any system can work if you have enough talented players like Detroit does who keep winning all the one on one battles, back-check, and can also put the puck in the net. The real question is how was Detroit able to obtain so many really good players while never having any high draft choices for so many years in a row?
    Superior scouting and evaluation?
    Superior coaching & development talent?
    Just being lucky many times over with their personnel decisions?
    I have no idea, but hats off to the Red Wing organization for year after year excellence!

  9. Also to show you how good the Wings are, Datsyuk and Zetterberg are their two best offensive forwards and are still up for the Selke (top defensive forward).

    Credit to Ken Holland, their GM for building such a great team. He really worked his way up and did things the right way. I believe he started low as a scout then bounced around in different positions on the team until he finally became GM. He knows both the business side and the actual hockey side to the team so he can handle both and it shows.

  10. Speed Ranger on

    re: Detroit and their draft picks….

    One or two “steals” can be a fluke. But consistent steals? No way. Either they have superior scouts, or they utilize a system that makes good players great and LOOK like draft steals.

  11. if there’s any comparison to the top two forwards on the wings that we have, it would have to be dru and gomer. dru has put the puck in the net, and is very good defensively. gomer surprised me with how good he was defensively and although not a great finisher has superb passing skills. you build a team a round that, which hopefully was the thought process behind bringing those two in last year. we need to do that now. end the jagr/shanny era immediately. and as detroit does, put them on a line together.

    to me, zetterberg is the best player in the nhl. nobody has a more complete game. and datsyuk is not far behind and as tough as nails. did anyone see him in game two at the end throw punches with laraque? i couldn’t believe my eyes.

    try prucha on their wing, at least to start, and see if he can finish some plays. if not stick him back in hartford or try to get something for him in a trade. on the second line, dubi centering cally and dawes. bring up anisimov to center korpi and sjostrom, and betts centering orr and jessiman (maybe).

    as an alternative, i would sign hossa if it doesn’t cost that much. i know avery is missing but i wouldn’t break the bank for him either. we might win but he is terrible defensively. we could do without him. then hossa on the second line, drop dawes back to the third line and sjostrom on the fourth.

    i would like orpik and/or hainsey. do not bring back rozsival. pair staal and orpik, girardi and toots, mara and hainsey (or maybe potter if he’s that dependable).

    we need players that have the mentality to win at all costs. if you’re talking about possibly emulating the play of any team, detroit is a great example. they always want the puck. they will do whatever it takes to make sure they’re on the puck first. the pens were waiting for the puck to get to them and a wing would just swoop in and get there first. that’s commitment. that’s why they will win.

  12. Jonny, I meant more that the team to win the cup the following year was NOT one of the teams to model themselves after the previous year’s winner, wasn’t saying anything about those teams not repeating

  13. hockeymanrangers # 2 on

    Wouldn’t you think that you would have to play a few different styles depending on whom you are playing??? I don’t know this for sure but just throwing it oout there?? I wouldn’t think you can play just one style and be succesfull. Just like any other sport depending on which team you play you SOMEWHAT change your style of play. Just like Pitt had better do tonight or they are done.

  14. Detroit has absolutely superior scouting, development, and coaching. They look for nothing but the best two-way players out there. Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Franzen, Z-man… how many of these guys can score the GWG but also backcheck like it’s no one’s business when duty calls?… oh then there’s Kronwall, Lidstrom…

  15. anyone think the rangers are going to use their first round pick (i think its the 21st pick) on jared staal (hes ranked in the 30’s)?

    I know this draft is really deep with talent but i can see the rangers taking a stab at staal if hes still available when they pick.

  16. also, everything i’ve heard recently suggests the rangers are going to resign rozi. like it or not but it looks like he’s going to get a new contract…

    again, i think avery is a goner.

  17. Jared Staal is ranked to be a late 2nd rounder. With that being said, if no large, punishing defenseman is available, take Staal (yes, I know he’s a wing). Isn’t he supposed to be the best Staal brother anyway?

  18. Supposedly, but if he is supposed to be the best then why is he ranked in the 30’s?

  19. He fell in ranking because of his stats this year 21g/28a/49p in 60 games… I know that’s not insanely awesome stats, but they’re darn good, IMO… and he’s only 18!

  20. As I understood it, Jared is supposed to be the worst Staal brother, not the best. Eric was always supposed to be the best, then came Marc in most eyes, then Jordan, then Jared.

  21. Regardless of style, Shanahan can’t play it. He’s slow, soft and selfish. Remember the Flyers game on March 21? Rangers, fighting to make the playoffs and down a man; Shanny on the kill. Some Flyer finishes his check, Shanny gets pissed, slashes him. Rangers must now kill a 3 on 5. Only Hollweg can match that for out and out disgusting! And this guy is supposed to be a good influence on the youth? No way! He’s a politician. Eff him!

    Here we are talking about the Wings, who didn’t want him three summers ago. Maybe because over his final 3 seasons there the team played 22 playoff games and Shanny had 3 goals.

    Of all the names being kicked around…the single most important decision the Rangers will make is this guy’s status. If he comes back: we’re screwed.

  22. is there any word on chereponov moving to NY next year? about Staal, i see no reason to not get another staal, look at the other 3 its genetic. unless we can get a big physical Dman that can play 2 way hockey.

  23. to me, zetterberg is the best player in the nhl. nobody has a more complete game. and datsyuk is not far behind and as tough as nails. did anyone see him in game two at the end throw punches with laraque? i couldn’t believe my eyes.

    Alan, Laraque didn’t play in game 2.

  24. # blurt May 28th, 2008 at 12:47 pm

    Regardless of style, Shanahan can’t play it. He’s slow, soft and selfish. Remember the Flyers game on March 21? Rangers, fighting to make the playoffs and down a man; Shanny on the kill. Some Flyer finishes his check, Shanny gets pissed, slashes him. Rangers must now kill a 3 on 5. Only Hollweg can match that for out and out disgusting! And this guy is supposed to be a good influence on the youth? No way! He’s a politician. Eff him!

    Here we are talking about the Wings, who didn’t want him three summers ago. Maybe because over his final 3 seasons there the team played 22 playoff games and Shanny had 3 goals.

    Of all the names being kicked around…the single most important decision the Rangers will make is this guy’s status. If he comes back: we’re screwed.

    Blurt…Shanny is the most unselfish sticking up for others player on the Rangers…I wonder if the only game you saw is that Rangers/Flyers game…
    I specifically remember this future HOF player with more than 600 goals to his credit, dish the puck off to either Dubi or Dawes, I forget, when going in on an empty net…

    I think he should hang em up…but at least respect him…and the fact you think he is so selfish speaks volumes.

  25. if there’s any comparison to the top two forwards on the wings that we have, it would have to be dru and gomer. dru has put the puck in the net, and is very good defensively. gomer surprised me with how good he was defensively and although not a great finisher has superb passing skills. you build a team a round that, which hopefully was the thought process behind bringing those two in last year. we need to do that now. end the jagr/shanny era immediately. and as detroit does, put them on a line together.

    to me, zetterberg is the best player in the nhl. nobody has a more complete game. and datsyuk is not far behind and as tough as nails. did anyone see him in game two at the end throw punches with roberts? i couldn’t believe my eyes.

    try prucha on their wing, at least to start, and see if he can finish some plays. if not stick him back in hartford or try to get something for him in a trade. on the second line, dubi centering cally and dawes. bring up anisimov to center korpi and sjostrom, and betts centering orr and jessiman (maybe).

    as an alternative, i would sign hossa if it doesn’t cost that much. i know avery is missing but i wouldn’t break the bank for him either. we might win but he is terrible defensively. we could do without him. then hossa on the second line, drop dawes back to the third line and sjostrom on the fourth.

    i would like orpik and/or hainsey. do not bring back rozsival. pair staal and orpik, girardi and toots, mara and hainsey (or maybe potter if he’s that dependable).

    we need players that have the mentality to win at all costs. if you’re talking about possibly emulating the play of any team, detroit is a great example. they always want the puck. they will do whatever it takes to make sure they’re on the puck first. the pens were waiting for the puck to get to them and a wing would just swoop in and get there first. that’s commitment. that’s why they will win.

  26. Speed Ranger,

    Yes, indeed it is, but that’s also apparently their skill order. Some might argue that Jordan is better than Marc, but I don’t think this is the case.

    Eric – #1 Center
    Marc – #2 or potential #1 Defenseman
    Jordan – #3 or potential #2 Center (mostly a checking guy)
    Jared – 3rd or potential 2nd line Winger

    At least, that’s how I see it.

  27. Alan,

    While I like the Staal/Orpik pairing in some regard, I don’t like it in others. That’s a potential shutdown pairing, but neither guy (especially not Orpik) is an offensive-minded guy. We need a puck-mover back there, and it can’t be Paul Mara at a 5th/6th guy. We need a more skilled guy who can start the transition, forgetting for the moment about the PP. My main concern is the transition, which is exactly why Detroit is so successful, because their defenseman are all capable of making the right decisions with the puck and then making great outlet passes.

  28. Blurt…Shanny is the most unselfish sticking up for others player on the Rangers…I wonder if the only game you saw is that Rangers/Flyers game…
    I specifically remember this future HOF player with more than 600 goals to his credit, dish the puck off to either Dubi or Dawes, I forget, when going in on an empty net

    ……….

    Honestly, I liek Shanny, and I think he’s as classy as classy gets in this game, but he’s a pretty selfish player. He’s unwilling to rest rest when he needs it and it has cost us. He should NOT have been on out 2nd line. And the reality behind his contract is that he did not really take less money this year. I love Shanny. I admit I have a mancrush on Shanny, probably even more so than you all have on Jagr… but I still think he needs to not be on this team next season…because I know he will not embrace the lesser role he needs to have. He should be on the PP and 3rd line ONLY. MAYBE the PK2. He’s too proud to take that diminished role though…and I thikn _that_ is what he means by selfish, and I agree 100% in that regard.

    Passing up an empty net shot means nothing on the larger scale, its a nice little “daddy move”. I actually can’t believe that is what you chose to reference…

  29. This from the League’s press office today:

    VERSUS’ GAME 2 VIEWERSHIP THE HIGHEST IN NETWORK HISTORY

    VERSUS, the exclusive cable home of the NHL in the U.S., garnered a 1.9 national rating and 2,537,560 total viewers for its Game 2 telecast of the 2008 Stanley Cup Final Monday, making it the most-watched program in network history.

    Other highlights:

    * Game 2 eclipsed Game 1 of this year’s Final (1.8 rating, 2,351,582 total viewers) as the highest-rated and most-watched Stanley Cup Final cable telecast since 2002. Further, the combined ratings for Games 1 and 2 show an increase of 111 percent from 2006 (.9) and a 171-percent increase from last year’s first two games (.7). The combined viewership for Games 1 of 2 of the 2008 Stanley Cup Final (2,426,692) show even greater increases over the past two years; up 181 percent from 2006 (863,206) and a whopping 273 percent from 2007 (649,779).

    * The 1.9 rating is up 217 percent from VERSUS’ Game 2 rating in 2007 (.6) and up 111 percent from Game 2 of the 2006 Stanley Cup Final (.9).

    * Locally, the Detroit market received an 11.7 rating, the highest rating ever in the Detroit market for an NHL game on VERSUS and a 39% increase over Game 1 (8.4). The Pittsburgh market garnered a 21.3 rating, making VERSUS the #1 rated television network in Pittsburgh for the time period. The 21.3 rating is up 12 percent from Game 1 (19.0).

    * VERSUS concluded its coverage of the 2007-08 NHL season with tremendous gains in ratings and viewership compared to the first two years of the NHL on the network. Compared to last season, the 2007-08 regular season saw an increase of 50 percent in HH ratings and 28 percent in total viewership; HH ratings for the 2008 Conference Quarterfinals were up 33 percent and total viewership was up 24 percent; Conference Semifinals were up 50 percent in HH rating and 51 percent in total viewership. During the Conference Final round, in which VERSUS aired nine exclusive games, the network witnessed dramatic increases in household ratings (up 71%) and total viewership (up 77%), making it the best-rated, most watched Conference Finals since 2002.

  30. Speed Ranger on

    Now if VS can just relocate their cameras so that when the crowd stands the TV audience can still see the ice!

  31. i feel like an idiot cause i dont get the crosby “splinter” thing from the last post

    only thing i could think of is that he cries if he gets a splinter… am i right

  32. A lot of Detroit’s success, I think, must have a little something to do with Scotty Bowman being in their organization. The man is a hockey genius. I wish he’s come to NY.

  33. on the stall thing i think he will go before the rangers can get him. i think he will go top 20 just because…

  34. joejoe if you go back in time… to the last thread… I posted a link in response to “splinter” and I’m pretty positive I nailed the reference …. although I’m now reconsidering how old/young Beer Me actually is…. ;)

    LETS GO WANGS

  35. “A lot of Detroit’s success, I think, must have a little something to do with Scotty Bowman being in their organization. The man is a hockey genius. I wish he’s come to NY.”

    it goes a lot farther than Bowman. the ownership knows what it wants and it knows who to hire. When it promoted Holland as the new GM, he went through “training” before he was appointed to that role. Other guys, including scouts, are first shown how its done from their vet guys in the system so when they are ready, they go out and also do a great job. It really is how a first class organization should be run in this sport because it handles both the business and hockey side the right way.

  36. Jeff-i think with age staal will show what kind of offensive ability he has. i think he will be strong on both ends which is why i would pair them together (of course if orpik signs with us)

    we saw some of that this year, some leetch-like end to end rushes. he can at least establish the zone for us consistently and maybe be an asset on the point on the PP.

  37. SeamusORIley on

    anyone else enjoying the irony of Cindy whining about the officiating? This kid, with all of his talent, is no Wayne Gretzsky; nor should he be in the same commercials from the NHL. Even with the refs in their pockets, Cindy and company cannot make it.

    I would LOVE to see 4-0 sweep with NO GOALS scored whatsoever by that whiney, diving weasel!

    Imagine, though,. had this kid been raised by Mr and Mrs Staal? He would not have mouthed off to Fosberg as a teenaged rookie, would not have been hated and targeted by his own teammates, and would have been a great ambassador for hockey!

  38. How many slashes did Crosby get away with tonight? I’ve counted three in the third period alone…

  39. Sounds like the *New York Rangers* shit the bed on getting the outdoor game next year, with Wings and Hawks playing @ Wrigley instead. (Apparently “announced” on ESPN)

    WAY TO GO RANGERS
    WAY TO GO YANKS
    WAY TO GO NYC

  40. onecupin67years on

    The trouble with the rangers is that each year they attempt to replicate the Stanley cup winners style.Two years ago they signed Adam Hall and matt cullen,last year they sign gomez and drury,who will it be this year?
    meanwhile Detroit stays on course and drafts later in the rounds and has success,it called SCOUTING, not free spending on F/A .

  41. Isles fan one cup – what does Hall and Cullen have in common. not the same type player and not from same team.

  42. how many times is emmerick gonna say that zetterberg is russian. the past two games he has called zetterberg the countrymen of first gonchar and then tonite malkin. really sad that doc doesn’t know he is Swedish

  43. and prucha25, i said basically the same thing re Prucha and Shanny earlier in the year. If shanny never comes here Prucha would have developed a lot more by now

  44. onecupin67years on

    LI Joe — do you read and write and understand the English language? or does mommy and daddy have to explain every thing to you?

  45. We’ve heard ad nausem about Detroit’s drafting skill. Its pretty misleading in my opinion. Check this out, go to the Internet Hockey Database and look at the drafts by team – http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/draft/teams/index.html .

    Look at Detroit’s draft picks, then go look at Pittsburgh’s for example. In my mind, being a successful organization is identifying players that are going to play at the NHL level. Even though they might not work on your team or system, if they have NHL skill they have value and you can trade them.

    Detroit gets this moniker of being an excellent drafter but I think the reality is they’ve just wound up keeping a lot of homegrown players, which in the late ’90s and early ’00s was more about being able to pay them.

    This is a completely arbitrary stat but if you look at the number of NHL games played by Detroit players from the last 15 years of drafting (1993+) they have played ~5000 NHL games. The players Pittsburgh drafted over the same time period, ~8700 games. Craig Patrick was the man, I wish we had him.

    Don’t look at the Rangers’ drafts, you’ll just get angry.

  46. has anybody noticed that most other teams are signing role players and their free agents, and the only news the rangers made was losing that artibration case with Holik and Jed? When is management gonna wake up and do something?

  47. salty…it’s not like no one thought the yankees wouldn’t have wanted the curtain call stadium game be any thing but baseball

  48. one cup – Oh I understand English just fine thank you. Your name indicates an Isles or Devs fan.

    What you mentioned re Cullen and Hall made no sense re copying the Cup winner especially with regard to Hall. And re Drury and Gomez how does that emulate what the Ducks did to win the cup with a big bad defense.

  49. onecupin67years on

    LI Joe- You just Don’t understand my point,you’re obsessed with Isla and jersey phobia,in fact your really an Islander fan,you probably rooted when they won and will root for them when their ship is righted. But you haven’t been right since Pilgim State closed.How did you wind up here in the burbs? Go back to newsday!

  50. one cup – I’m not the one with the anti Ranger handle. What the **** is your point.

  51. onecupin67years on

    LI JOE ..you still don’t get it ! THEY won 1,one,cup in 68 years and were lucky in 94 , but I don’t kid myself.And you don’t know who I root for.

  52. one cup – they were not lucky in 94′ and could have won in 92 as presidents trophy winner.

    what don’t I get that you have a name that makes fun of the Rangers history. Only a fan of another team would do that so most likely you’re a fan of the Isles or Devils. now what the heck were you talking about with Hall, Cullen, Drury and Gomez. Just explain that and come clean on what team you root for. It’s certainly not the Rangers.

  53. onecupin67years on

    OK LI JOE ,I live in Commack and root for the Ducks ,I have season tix,I’ll be glad to take you.And the Rangers did their best to lose in 94 but Messier save the day.And the ponit about Cullen ,gomez,drury and hall is in reference to people on the blog wishing for the free agents of the teams in the finals,like Orpik.The rangers signed and have signed the f/a of prior cup winning teams and always come up losing,with the exception of Messier.While Detroit builds from within,which type of team would you want? And ,the Rangers keep their stars too,too long.Richter and Leetch should have been traded years ago for good young talent,what’s Shanahan and Jagr and others doing on the team?

  54. one cup – I did not know the LI Ducks still existed. In 94 the team the Rangers beat in the semis was a very very good team that went on to win several cups. The Rangers also won the presidents trophy that year and were undefeated vs the devils in the reg season. So luck only played a small part in the Rangers success. They could have won in 92′ and 79′ as well.

    The part of including Hall made no sense since he came from Nashville. If you changed that to Ward it would have made more sense.

    The best way to win a cup or three is to fall to the absolute bottom of the league and get stud draft picks. Obviously there have been some exceptions but those types of teams had great players like Brodeur. Even Detroit got Yzerman as a top 4 pick in the draft. Sakic was a top end pick for Colorado as was Vinny L for TB. None of our youth is at that level. So we will have to supplement with players from other teams. I do not propose going for a guy like Hossa. We can leave some cap room for the 2009 season as any free agents of consequence will require several years on their contract.

  55. Power Surge on

    Re Shanahan, this past season was his “bonus” extra season, more for leadership than production. This team would have been better off NOT bringing him back in 2007-2008. Bringing him back, AGAIN, would be typical Rangers management nutburger decision-making.

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