Fahey and Potter down (Updated)


As far back as July, I was told the Rangers were most likely to carry just six defensemen. The final roster moves today confirmed that is their plan at least to start this season.

Zipay reports from Prague that backliners Corey Potter and Brian Fahey “were the team’s final cuts before tomorrow’s opener”:http://weblogs.newsday.com/sports/hockey/rangers/blog/ (Miika Wiikman stays with the team as a third goalie through the end of the weekend, and then will be sent down as well). Neither player is required to go through waivers, so it makes the decision a fairly easy one.

So now the Rangers carry 15 forwards and six defensmen, which is hardly the ideal ratio. And it raises further questions about what exactly the team was thinking with some of its free-agent signings. This is not a knock on Aaron Voros or Patrick Rissmiller, both of whom were signed on July 1, and who could end up being productive additions to the lineup (Voros as a poor man’s Sean Avery; Rissmiller a rich man’s Ryan Hollweg)

But I maintain the one thing this team didn’t need at the end of last season was any more third and fourth-line forwards, especially if you’re operating under the assumption that Lauri Korpikoski would at least contend for an NHL job.

Throw in the trade for Dan Fritsche, who the team acquired alongside Nikolai Zherdev, and the team still has too many interchangeable players. Perhaps it becomes an asset at the trade deadline. But in the meantime, it puts the team in an unneccessary salary cap predicament, which explains both the need for just six defensemen, and perhaps even the absence of another marquee forward.

In other news:

<li>Judging by the lines today, it looks Rissmiller, Fritsche and Petr Prucha could be the healthy scratches tomorrow. Here’s what Zip had:


As much as Tom Renney has said these games are all about the four points, I just can’t see the coach scratching Prucha in his homeland for both games. So if he sits tomorrow, I’d expect him to play on Sunday.

Update, 10:25 a.m.: Zipay has a note about “Prucha angrily blowing off a TV interview after learning he won’t be in the lineup tomorrow”:http://weblogs.newsday.com/sports/hockey/rangers/blog/.

<li>The word on the captain selection is it will be done at a team dinner tonight. Everyone “is assuming it will be Chris Drury”:http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/03/sports/hockey/03rangers.html?_r=1&oref=slogin, but we’ll have more on that later.

On a related note, wouldn’t it be awkward if Renney announces, “And our new team captain is…” and Drury starts walking up, and then the coach says, “Blair Betts!”? OK, that’s not likely to happen…

<li>Congrats to the Korpedo, Lauri Korpikoski, on cracking the NHL roster. Of course, this means he now faces the pressure of extending his streak of scoring a goal in every single NHL game he’s played. Fine, it’s only been one game so far, but you know he’s thinking about it.

By the way, can we convince the kid to officially change his name to”The Korpedo”? Just one name. Like Cher, or Sinbad. That’s how you make your mark.

I should be charging for this type of advice….

More later…

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  1. Kinda figured this is what we’d have.

    The ratio doesn’t make sense. But I won’t be surprised when “adjustments” are made when they return to NY. (as hinted at bb.com)

    You gotta figure one of those dmen will be seen on garden ice this season. Just depends how many games it takes for d-kal to play himself out of the lineup.

    Comparing Rissmiller to #44 explains right there that he should have no place on this roster. There’s a reason that #44 was dealt.

  2. THRILLED that korpi is making the team. The guy has made the absolute MOST of every opportunity that he’s been provided. He’s been brought through the system in just the right way. And that’s a true testament that the system is working. Just like dubi, staal, cally, dawes.

  3. i know im not an expert, but carrying 6 D-men is trouble. The only thing i can think, is a trade is coming where 1 or 2 of the “interchangeable parts” could be moved around to bring in another D-man??

    I think maybe the logic is: give all our forwards some playing time, and maybe someone will wanna pick someone up in a trade in the first month and a half?

  4. Sam,
    After reading your post, the only conclusion I can reach so far is that the brass ie; Sather…is incredibly stupid. How come the majority of us lowly posters could see that a guy like Korpido would seriously contend for a spot? there were players in last seasons training camp and preseason that were pushing for jobs…but no! Sather goes out and makes 3
    dumba$$ moves…Rissmiller, Voros, and Fritsche. Now Fritsche came with Zherdev so in my book…No Problem…a good 3rd 4th line player. Voros…ok a big grind it out kind of player who will finally plant himself in front of the net…ok…
    BUT why then go get Rissmiller…we already have Betts, Voros, Fritsche and Sjostrom.
    So now we have an over abundance of 3rd/4th line players
    Betts, Sjostrom, Voros, Fritsche, and Rissmiller, when in my book our 3rd and 4th lines where not necessarily the problem.
    Damn our management Sather…is dumb, he deserves every boo he gets when his name is mentioned…
    IMO Messier as GM can’t come soon enough.

  5. I like the Voros – Betts – Orr line. And I really don’t understand why Chris Drury, who consistently comes up big during important face-offs, is playing on the wing with gomez.

  6. Those line combos by Zip tell me that Fritsche-Rissmiller-Prucha are the 5th line. Just my guess.

    Hey Pete, Sjostrom had more goals than Prucha last year, is bigger and faster and a much better force on the ice. Prucha’s production has gone down since his first season. His ability to finish stinks. He gets blown off the puck when the ref blows his whistle in his vicinity. He has great stamina according to the coaching staff, but stamina alone doesn’t win Cups. Prucha should be used as trade bait though his value keeps dropping each day.

    Pumped for tom’w.

  7. dan – normally it would present itself as a problem. But with 2 players as smart and ‘aware’ as dru and gomer, I don’t forsee it as a problem.

    And on the same topic. It must have been about the same time in camp that Renney & Co. identified Korpi as a legit 3rd liner and they felt comfortable moving dru to the wing.

  8. I didn’t mind signing Voros and Rissmiller bc I thought that one would make it and one would get cut, whoever had a better camp and fit in better. Comnig into camp, I didn’t think Korpikoski was going to make it. I knew he had a shot. So then, with this mind set, they would have had say 1 extra forward, being either Fritsche, Sjostrom, Orr, or Voros, with Korpikoski and Rissmiller in the minors or what not. Still could see Rissmiller going down. I also feel that Prucha should get to start the opening game. I don’t care so much about the novelty of being the Czech (which would be nice for him though) but he’s coming off a two game stint where he got credit for a deflection goal and had a great game between Korpikoski and Callahan. I don’t get it.

  9. I too would like to see Prucha for a few more games with Korpi and Callahan. And I have no problem with Drury going to the wing, and just because he is wing doesn’t mean he can’t still take faceoffs. If him playing on the wing means that he is going to be going to the net like he has been, then I am all for it. He is not a big man by any means, but he definitely has spent a majority of the pre season in the crease.

  10. Nigel Dawes on the second line? Aside from his low salary, what value has he shown consistently? He’s had a couple of good games, and been non-existent in most of the others.

  11. I also can’t imagine that Prucha doesn’t grab Sjostrom’s spot these two games given that they are here in the Czech Republic. I’d also like to see Fritsche play. Does Rissmiller even have a shot on goal in the preseason? This kid provides a lot more spark out there.

  12. Have you guys not figured out that when Glen Sather makes a trade — those guys play.

    Case and point… Freddy Shoes will play over Prucha b/c if he doesn’t that essentially means Glen Sather traded Al Montoya, a first round pick, for absolutely nothing at all.

    The Rangers do A LOT to make sure Glen “looks good”. When he makes a trade, for better or worse, those guys play.

    Same reason Christian Backman so saw much undeserving ice late last season and into the playoffs.

  13. Anyone know if Redden ever wore the ‘C’ in Ott? He was there for 10-11 seasons. Ever ‘fill-in’ due to injury or anything?

    just curious.

  14. Most likely to be traded – Rissmiller.
    Prucha is another name who could be dealt while he may still have a good rep around the league and be worth getting something in return.

    Also, I would not be surprised if Dawes get packaged in a trde with Prucha and/or Rissmiller.

    This would make sense if the Rangers are trying to bring in someone who might fit better o the left side along with Dubi and Zherdev on the 2nd line. I just dont thinks Dawes style work well with DUbi and Zherdev.

    Dawes would be a perfect fit on the left side of a line with Korpedo and Cally though. This may mean the Rangers may try to trade Sjostrom also. With the package they can get for Rissmiller/Prucha.Sjostrom or some combo they should be able to nab a 2nd line LW to play with Dubi and Zherdev. This would free up the line combos and allow us to call up a 7th dman as follows:

    ??? thru trade – Dubi-Zherdev

    Staal – Mara


  15. sjostrom adds a little more to the lineup than prucha though. He’s a bigger body and is probably just as fast. All other attributes would be a push.

    And Sam, comparing rissy to hollweg is just an injustice. At least compare him to somewhat half respectable like Jason ward.

  16. Wow, all I can say is that this is probably the youngest season opening forward lineup the Rangers have had in quite a few years. I don’t know about the rest of you but that makes me a little nervous…

  17. Orts, Dawes and Dubi played together in Hartford with jarkko immonen. They are very used to playing with each other. Plus giving up Dawes, prucha and rissy is too much.

  18. WTF!!!!!!!!
    a Voros/Betts/Orr 4th line is no better than last seasons 4th line. I’m not happy about it. I’d rather see a Prucha, Rissmiller, Fritche 4th line.

    Also, Sjostrom doesn’t belong on the 3rd line.

  19. Dawes isn’t going anywhere. At least not until the deadline, and still a real long shot.

    Sjo over prucha right now because if he shows he can play, you can take prucha’s 1.6mil off the cap. If it doesn’t work, then he goes back in. You have to at least try it. Prucha could be a victim of #’s. And in part, they’re due to his own!

  20. Thanks Beer. It’s a theory that holds a lot of weight based on history. Glenn has much more power than people recognize.

    Dolan loves him, and a like Isaih Thomas, Glenn isn’t really getting graded on success. If he was, he would’ve been shipped out in the years before the lock-out when he made some of the most boneheaded signings and draft selections in Rangers history.

    He has a major influence on who Tom Renney plays. Remember, Renney reports to Glenn. Glenn reports to ownership. At the end of the day, Glenn is Tom’s boss.

    Little snippet to give you some insight to the Rangers front office. I used to work for the Rangers. Every morning I would see Glenn Sather stroll into the office around lunch time with a big fat cigar in his mouth half finished. Keep in mind this is a no smoking building. By 2pm he had a fresh cigar and by 4pm he was on his way out.

    He always seemed like he was in “chill mode”. We didn’t interact much except for the occassional “Good Morning”.

    Point being, he’s VERY comfortable at MSG. He doesn’t really care what the media or any of the fans think of him.

    He does his own thing and he makes his own decisions. That, to me, is a scary thought.

    Avery was shipped out b/c he didn’t respect Glenn. Anyone who thinks otherwise (cap, personel, etc.) is kidding themselves.

  21. renney is a terrible coach. i dont think he wants to win. ill take the prucha line over the betts line any day of the week. rissmiller looks fine on the pk. bettis the worst player on this team. i hate u renney

  22. i just could disagree more re sjostrom. He is a 4th liner if anything and you aren’t gonna get anything besides a low pick or another failed first rounder if you trade him. I mean Phoenix didn’t want anything to do with him, and they aren’t quite the best team in the league. but you’re right brandon sather is stubborn and will rarely admit he was wrong about a player even a bad one

  23. One time Sather put that cigar out in my helmet…..
    while I was wearing it!!!!!

    Then he snickered “could be worse you commie, you could still be playing under Milbury”

    Milbury used to hide me helmet before practices

  24. Matt,

    Tom Renney is a bad coach?

    Maybe you want Brian Trottier back at the helm.

    Keep in mind Tom is the ONLY coach to get your team to the playoffs in the last 15 years. Also, keep in mind that this team over achieved in his first year and has gone to the second round in the last two years. Keep in mind that Tom has instilled a defense that will make this team competitive, at a minimum, for years to come.

    Hands down, no question about it, Tom Renney is a top 5 coah in the league.

    Name me 5 other coaches you would rather have, and don’t tell me Scotty Bowman.

    Also, I didn’t say whether the price for avery was bad or good. What I said was it’s not the reason he wasn’t resigned. There was a pesonality conflict there. Glenn wants to be the Alpha male — Avery clearly wouldn’t allow that. Clearly, with some of the MONSTER contracts Glenn has given out in the past, overpaying wasn’t the issue.

  25. To add to that…. at the end of this season Renney will be FORTH on the all-time games coached list in NY.

    A franchise with an 82 year history.

  26. Just read on Zip’s blog about Prucha,

    “UPDATE (Prucha and Fritche were the last players on the ice after practice and Prucha later reportedly blew off a television interview request with some anger, saying that he wouldn’t be in the lineup on Saturday)

    If this is true – it is a shame Renney doesn’t play Prucha in his home country, even if it is for these two games and then management can decide if they are going to work out a trade to make room for him on one of the fwd lines or if they are going to trade Prucha and perhaps another player/prospect to get something in return – such as 2nd line scoring on the left side.

    WIth Prucha’s reaction to his benching, this may fast forward or set in motion the Rangers plan for making him part of a trade either this weekend or upon the Rangers return to the US next week.

  27. Ok Matt, tell us how you really feel…

    Anyway, with regards to Avery, he didn’t deserve the contract he got, like you guys said, but he was also starting to become the cancer that he usually becomes. Jagr seemed to be the only guy that could control him and they got along. The act got old though when he kept getting all the attention for the dumbest reasons. Not that the other Ranger players wanted the limelight, but Avery got all the attention, for good and bad. But I also heard through a source that the team didn’t like him. As a matter of fact, through one of those I know a guy who knows a guy, I heard that the team didn’t like Shanny that much. I don’t see how that’s possible, but the fact is, both them and Jagr were holding Dru and Gomer back. That’s why they aren’t here, not because Sather’s ego

  28. “but there’s worse posters out there.”

    Good morning to you too beer me!

    anyway, together the Renney-Sather combo is good enough to make 2nd rnd of post season

    While I dont think “renney does not want to win” like Matt says; I do think he gets a free pass from most of the fans in NY…

  29. Dan Fritsche deserves to and needs to play more minutes than Dawes, Prucha or Sjostrom. None of those three did anything in the preseason and Fritsche can skate, he can score, he can kill penalties and he hits people all over the ice. Play Dan Fritsche!

  30. Whoa there Brandon, Tom is NOT the ONLY coach to get the Rangers to the playoffs in the last 15 years. 1994 isn’t even 15 years ago, let alone 1997

  31. Ha…maybe this is Prucha “making a move” to finally score and try to get out of NY…good for him…

  32. As for Betts…
    say all you want about him…cause I mostly agree but…it was mainly because of Betts that our PK has been so good for the past few years.

  33. …and just going back and reading some of the posts about Prucha, it’s obvious that Rangers fans are blind when talking about #25. The guy hasn’t done a thing in a season and a half and was a 30 goal scorer in 05-06 because he was the beneficiary of playing with Jagr on a lethal power play when Jagr was having an MVP season. Prucha is garbage so sorry to all of those people who ran out and got that ballerina’s jersey but he’s not going to be a NY Ranger for long and I’m thankful for that.

  34. Matteauonov,
    Posts like that get ignored for the most part around here…and just get chalked up to a missed dose of medicine

  35. Someone can correct me bc I didn’t see all of preseason, but why would Sjostrom get the nod over Prucha when he didn’t even get that kind of quality time during the preseason? Especially, when Prucha played with those two linemates on Wednesday….and looked good on top of it (I know I said that before, but why break up something that worked? Even if it was only for 1 game).

  36. Ha Pierre. Figure of speech. It feels like 100 years since 94. Either way, you get the point. Quite a few coaches have come and go since Colin Campbell and none have even gotten us close to the door step. At least Tom Renney has us on the right block.

    To me, Tom gets 2 more years before I question his coaching. This is a very new team so i can’t judge him based on what takes place this year. But, if we’re looking at another 1/2 round exit next year, it’s probably time for him to move on.

    The question is, can he get us over that hump?

    I think he can.

    Only 2/3 other coaches have gone to the playoffs in three consecutive seasons post lock-out. That has to carry some weight.

  37. kaspar, did you really think I meant you? Well…you’re right. You suck. lol, jk.

    But…’free pass’. Wouldn’t know it on the blogs. Or from any fan I talk to. I know about 5 people…all here, that actually like the guy. The media, and those that pay attention to the rest of the nhl coaches know full well he’s a great one.

    So many people love torts. Why does torts speak so highly of renney then?

    matteau…could be.

  38. Kevo, how exactly did Prucha look good this preseason? Because he skated circles around the Bern team and found himself wide open in the slot for chance after chance does not mean Prucha played well. Prucha would have gotten buried by any competent NHL defenseman in the position he was in. Bern was just deficient defensively and let the little guy roam free. And you know what with all that time and space Prucha STILL couldn’t find the net! So it’s time to go for Petr. The Rangers have given him enough time to rediscover his touch and without Jagr and Nylander to pass him the puck he’s just not the same player and needs to go!

  39. i am not a troll. i post on zipays blog too. clearly thats a dramatic statement. but im very frustrated with renney i have been since last yr. i believe he is like joe girardi. both of them r good with young teams with no pressure and great at teaching, but i dont think neither of them can make that next jump. renney says one thing and does another. he says he wants 4 lines that can score. betts and orr cant do that. he says how it was a nice touch that zherdev and kalinin picked up the victoria cup and then doesnt play prucha in his home country. I HATE RENNEY!!! and because of him my productivity at work is 0 because i cant stop ranting about how i dont like him.

  40. Brandon,

    Let’s not get crazy about Avery and why he wasn’t kept. Simply put, he got more money than an 18 goal scorer deserves with way too many years for a guy has a problem keeping his mouth shut and running himself out of town within 2 years of everywhere he plays, while getting a no-movement clause. The Stars are stuck with him for better or for worse for 4 years.

    Sean Avery sees himself as bigger than the team and while his boycott of the media was cute and funny, him playing his contract negotiations out twice in the media is ridiculous and unprofessional. Simply put, Sean Avery is a 28 year old child who doesn’t know when and how to shut his mouth.

    We are better without him.

  41. Matt,

    You can’t make a loaded statement about Renney being “only good with young players” and not back it up. First off, he’s proven that he can handle veterans. Might you have forgotten that he dealt with one of the strongest personalities in the game for 3 years, Jaromir Jagr.

    Second, this is a young team. So, your point that he is only good with teaching young players makes him a great fit for this team.

    Third, who would you rather have? At least come up with one alternative.

    There aren’t any better coaches in the league right now. That’s a fact. He has one of the highest winning percentages in a league where teams go to the finals and don’t make the playoffs the following year with regularity (see Edmonton, See Carolina).

    So who do you want? So no-namer out of Juniors like the Islanders? Or maybe some bonehead like Gutter with the Devils?

    Name one coach you’d rather have.

  42. I can understand why Prucha is upset, but on the other hand he is not NHL material. Newman said it best. He can’t finish, get knocked off his feet when the wind from another player goes zipping past him. He does not fit Renny’s or the team system.

    I like him, but he would probably work better in another system in the West (Colorado). I would not trade him to a team in the East just with the fear of him coming back to hunt us.

  43. Hey Matt

    I kind of agree, which is politically incorrect in this “Sather is Lucifer” blog

    I dont hate Renney but like Brandon says this is his time, no more excuses, he was given hall of famers and thru some miracle good draft choice pix (Hank, Staal,Dubi etc…)

    I also dont get my work done…but thats because of the hi-heels walking around in here….

  44. Better off without Avery? Our record with him in the lineup versus without him in the lineup over the past two seasons would not indicate that.

    His value remains to be determined. There are people, like myself, who felt he gave this team some much needed grit and personality.

    I hope we can play tenaciously without him. But, that remains to be determined. You only hope, you don’t know.

  45. Andrew, agreed that those teams weren’t NHL-caliber, but how come Dawes was still non-existent? I know I sound like a huge Prucha supporter. I like the guy and hope he succeeds here, but I can take him or leave him. I just don’t think it makes any sense that after his line was the best on the ice last game (although preseason), why do you split that up? Especially when the other lines looked good too. Then, to add on, they are complementing him on his conditioning and all of these, and the guy is worknig his tail off, yet he doesn’t deserve to play? And in his home country? Throw him a bone, at least just for 1 or 2 games. Him and Sjostrom will do the same job in these 2 games, so why not let him live this experience…

  46. It’s not that I don’t like Sjostrom but can we have a do-over on the Al Montoya deal. Our goaltending depth is a concern and there’s no way Montoya cracks the Phoenix lineup with Bryzgalov and Tellqvist ahead of him there. I worry about Hank’s knee and we all know Valiquette can’t handle the every day grind God forbid Hank goes down. Wiikman doesn’t inspire much confidence either honestly. He looked very unready for the NHL in the preseason.

  47. Kevo, I think Prucha will play one of the two games. I doubt seriously if Renney would do that to Prucha. Who knows he may even start both? The lines in practice are not always the lines he goes with for games. But ultimately I think Prucha and Rissmiller might be two players who are let go/dealt. I’d rather see Dane Byers get a chance over Rissmiller honestly. I think paying $1m for that guy is absolute insanity.

  48. andrew – I don’t buy that his knees are as bad as the media wants to make it. But at the same time. No Hank = No playoffs.

    As it was said about Jags last season. It applies to Hank this time around….

    “As he goes, so go we.”

    Still not sure about that grammar, but the master linguist said it, so it must be true! haha

  49. brandon,

    its not just young. its young with no pressure. Like year one after the lockout. I wsa in college at the time so i wasnt able to watch every game and i made my roomates like hockey and they asked me how the rangers were doin well i said i have no idea. last yr there wsa pressure to do better than the yr before. and renney didnt. it took him two months to get line combos. renney is a likeable guy and jags is very easy to get along with if u work with him. I want mike keenan back. After watching him coach against us that one game yr hes the guy again. I remember he went with line 1 then line 2 then back to line. None of this 10 min 4th line crap.

  50. This is my last post to you Matt. Savor and enjoy it.

    Mike Keenan? That ship has sailed and the Rangers know better than anyone that “second chances” don’t work. Mike hasn’t won anything since 94. Although, I think he’ll take the Flames a little deeper this year.

    Jagr is not easy to get along with. It’s well-documented. For starters, he was boo’d out of Pittsburgh after Mario left and forced out of Washington after he “didn’t feel like playing” anymore. He performed well under Tom and that says A LOT.

    The NHL is different now. You can’t win with rolling only 2 lines. Teams are faster and they wear you out with 4 skating lines. Long gone are the years of playing 2 lines. If you’d like to go back to that system, that’s a system that will bring to fuition a great deal of losing.

    Sounds like you havent watched all that much in the last few years. Try and really watch and understand the game and you’ll see that this team is best when it plays Renney’s game.

  51. Matt,

    No pressure? They’re playing in New York City… Not Nashville or Miami… There is always pressure in this city, no matter what you do (hot dog cart guy to professional athlete).

  52. I really don’t understand the moves today at all. I thought Potter played well and would serve as a good 7th D man. Carrying only 6 D men is a recipe for disaster. It’s a tough position and injuries are common. Honestly, we’ve been spoiled these past couple years with Jason Strudwick who could fill in at a moment’s notice and be competent. Dare I say the same for Malik who was often a healthy scratch but was more competent than he got credit for.

    The glut of forwards we have now makes little to no sense. Fritsche has played well and deserves a spot in the lineup. Voros doesn’t impress me in the least. Betts is a good penalty killer but is offensive kryptonite. Orr is a good fighter and a much improved player, where does he fit in? Sjo is fast but isn’t much of a finisher. No matter which way you look at it, we’re backed into a corner up against the cap not because of all the star power we have on our team, it’s by a bunch of lower level forwards, half of which will be healthy scratches. Voros’ 7 goals won’t do us a bit of good if he’s in the press box. Conversely, Zherdev and Naslund will have a tougher time scoring when 5th liners and taking their ice time.

    I think it’s screwed up that Prucha gets scratched on the games in his home country, and I don’t agree with it. Prucha could easily play in place of Freddy. It’s sort of a insult to him personally. I would like to see Prucha get a couple games to maybe turn it around, or at very least showcase him for a trade. Something big has to be in the works because there is no way we can carry this lineup through the season.

    Messier for GM!

  53. Andrew, I agree. I would hope he would get at least 1 game. And if that’s the case, start him the first game and see how he does. I also agree that he and/or Rissmiller will be gone. I like Fritsche and think he deserves a shot. He has more of a future here than the otehr two. The only problem I have is that they are going to get rid of Prucha before they fulkly get a chance to see what he can do to start off. He had an awful year last year, but if he played now, he’ll get more playing time, including more PP time. Give him a shot for a few games. How’s is going to hurt you? Sjostrom is gonig to do the same as Prucha, just hit a little harder and not get plastered.

  54. Brandon

    Renney called himself out in the Rangers’ season preview. Said his team beat itself in the playoffs the last two years. Translation: I got outcoached.

    You wouldn’t take Babcock or Torts over Tom?

  55. “No pressure? They’re playing in New York City’

    he meant in 2005-06
    there was no pressure, they were young, predicted out of the playoffs and ridiculed in THN and SI and ESPN.com

    NO pressure that year

    Then he was given Shanahan and drury and Gomez and there was pressure

    I hope we are both wrong and renney takes us to the promised land…to do it I think he has to change and adapt his thinking…hopefully he isnt a stubborn guy.

  56. perhaps they sent down potter/fahey because they dont need to clear waivers..unlike prucha, rismiller, etc..
    now, they can trade a forward or two (instead of them being claimed off waivers) and then call up one of the defensemen

  57. “Renney called himself out in the Rangers’ season preview. Said his team beat itself in the playoffs the last two years. Translation: I got outcoached.”

    What language are you translating??

    “We” got beat is the team

    “I” got beat ( or outcoached ) is calling himself out…..

    like I said this is the “Sather is Lucifer” blog

  58. Kaspar

    Pay attention. Renney didn’t say we got beat. He said we beat ourselves. That is on the coach.

  59. Ok Prucha sucks, but sittin Fritsche in place of ORR is wrong….Whos Tampa’s tough guy ????? Seein that Fritsche has speed and a nasty shot and orr has neither.

    Betts,Orr and Voros yea that will get more scoring on the 4th line!

  60. Couple of things. Brandon, Avery was hated by the team. It was stated here in a previous post, but the players themselves grew tired of him. Just ask Orr his opinion of Avery since he had to room with him and you will find out his cons outweighed the pros.

    Ok if a guy gets injured during a game, its not like you can just grab a 7th d-man from the locker room anyway. You can just call up the guy for the next game, so Potter can actually play. Holding him as a 7th d-man is a waste since he won’t be able to further progress.

    This makes plenty of sense if you think about it though. Show off some of the forwards you might want to move, especially Prucha and Sjostrom. Mind you Sjostrom is the better overall player, but either one of these guys will probably be dealt and then you can carry a 7th d-man.

    BTW, this preseason was a showcase for the new guys so Renney and crew could see what they thought. Thats why Sjostrom and others didn’t see as much time. Either way Sjoie is on his last straw because hes got skill, just he needs to bring that skill every night. He always works hard, but he has his dry spells.

  61. Tampa has a couple of big tough guys. Koci, Artuykin is a pretty big dude, Malone, and some of their young d-men. Plus Melrose is a coach that breeds toughness. He loves guys that fight and always hit. We need Orr just to make sure stuff doesn’t get out of hand. Once we get back and play the Hawks, I don’t expect to see Orr in the lineup.

  62. laurence. Do you and matt share a helmet?

    RobZ – watch the preseason game in TB vs the lightning? They have a few. Orr is a great call in these games. You don’t go out there and set yourself up to get pushed around in the fuggin opening games of the season. YOU set the tone of your season. Not your opponent.

    Joe in DE – It was inevitable that not everyone would agree with the decisions. potter and fahey went down b/c they don’t need to clear waivers. And if it were the guys you wanted to see make it, there would be others saying it should have been different guys in the lineup. Its a great problem to have too many guys. Better than not enough.

  63. I have no problem playing a 4th line with toughness if they only get 6-8 minutes a night. I do not want Colton Orr trying to shadow Martin St. Louis tomorrow night. As long as Renney doesn’t try to use those guys as a checking line I have no problem with them in the lineup over Prucha. I would prefer Fritsche over Dawes but I understand that we need 15-20 goals out of Dawes and he has to get going sooner rather than later if this team is going to have success.

  64. To be honest….I don’t really care if Dawes, prucha, sjo, fritsche, rissmiller, voros all have to have a fist fight to get in the lineup. Korpi made it and that’s all I wanted to see.

    Voros is needed in the lineup to put pressure on the opposing goalie.

    Dawes shows tons of potential some nights, and dissapears in others. I think prucha/dawes are interchangable at this point. Flip a coin I say!

  65. brandon,

    u might be done with me but im not with u. yes I 100percent agree u need to roll 4 lines these days. Last yr i posted on zipays blog a lot not really on this one so im not sure if u saw what im saying. I think people r still stuck with the idea that the 4th line has to be a “defensive checking line” who said so. If you have guys on ur team that can produce on the 4th line why not play them. my 4th line would be fristche voros and riss or sjos.

    brandon ur up

  66. Someone made the valid point about carrying 6 or 7 d-men….who cares? You are only dressing 6 anyway. So if one dude gets hurt you can call a new D-man up for the next game. If they are all in Czech already, they have enough in the case that someone gets hurt in game 1. Those young kids will be served better by playing more than less. Though if my burnt memory serves me, isn’t Fahey like 26-7 and not 22-3?

    Anyway, F Prucha. I am totally against playing the guy just because he is in his home country. Don’t get me wrong, when he was lighting it up as Jagr’s finisher on the PP a bunch of years ago I thought he was great. His luster is gone. Score some friekin goals or hit the road.

    We can all agree that Sather has done 10 bad moves for every one good move in his tenure here. That is clear and apparent to almost anyone. He is Dolan’s buttboy and is not going anywhere til he is ready. If Isaiah Thomas can survive, Sather would have to burn MSG down with a flamethrower to get fired. Sad.

  67. Should be: ..those young kids served better by playing more in Hartford than less with the big club.

  68. Matt,

    I always have the same response for those who want a “scoring fourth line”. If the fourth line was a “scoring line” they wouldn’t be the fourth line — they would be the first or second line. Wouldn’t they?

    I’d rather have a fourth line that shuts down the other teams top two, gives a change of pace with hard hitting corner work and is reliable defensively.

    The NHL is deep, but not deep enough for 30 teams to have 4 lines that can score. I can’t name a fourth line sniper on any team in the league.

    I want my fourth line to be hard working and reliable. If they score some goals, that’s just a bonus.

  69. “You bet your ass johnny D. You pay attention…I like that! haha”

    haha someone has to.

    And say what you want about Sather, but he made the Rangers matter again. Maybe early on he didn’t make some of the best moves, but he traded away the stars that were here and started from scratch.

    Part of him trying to bring in guys was Messier’s stupid influence and him not wanting to just give it up when he was clearly a 4th line player. Slats always had a soft spot for his old Oil guys so he’d always do things to make it better for them.

    Also Sam, its not confirmed that Prucha blew up so don’t report it like its an actual thing that happened. Zipay said it was reported, which means he heard it from someone and maybe Prucha was mad for another reason or didn’t actually appear to be that angry and someone just misread his expressions. I’m not saying you are wrong, but don’t report it as fact if neither of you actually saw it happen.

  70. Brandon, I agree with the fact the idea of having a fourth line that is defensively reliable and able to shut down top lines…when they are out there. I don’t like the idea of matching our 4th line with otehr teams top lines. Means a lot less time for the otehr lines. I remember the logic a few years ago…Jagr’s line went out against the other teams number 1 bc they possessed the puck and kept the other teams number 1 in their defensive zone. All of a sudden, they decide to use Betts’ line to shut down Crosby. While they did an effective job, Orr and Hollweg were out there for like 15 minutes a game. It was a joke.

  71. your boy Malik on

    Would it have been wrong to play Prucha? I don’t think so……I don’t blame him if he did blow up….

  72. I can’t even begin to tell you how much I hate Tom Renney. Dan Fritsche has had a great camp, he’s been one of our best players, and as a “reward” he gets benched for people he thoroughly outplayed in Betts, Orr, Voros and Dawes. What has Nigel Dawes done that gives him a spot over Prucha? What in the hell has Colton Orr or Blair Betts done that gives them a spot?!?!

    ARGH!!! It’s like Renney has to by nature compose one entire line that is slow, has no offensive instincts whatsoever and couldn’t score into an empty net.

    MARK MY WORDS: This team will never be that good until Renney and his lust for defensive hockey and misguided loyalties is shown the door! The beat writers better be a lot tougher on him this year than in previous years. Sure he’s a nice guy, but some of the decisions he makes as a coach are unconscionably stupid, as bad as anything Bryan Trottier or John Muckler ever did.

  73. doodie machetto on

    Just some fun stats:

    If Korpedo was to score a goal in every game he ever played, assuming he played all 82 games every year, he would eclipse Wayne Gretzky’s goal scoring record in the 75th game of his 11th season.

    Assuming a sweep of every round of the playoffs every year, he would break Wayne Gretzky’s playoff goal scoring record in the 4th game of the Conference Finals in his 8th season.

    Still assuming a sweep of every round of the playoffs every year and also assuming no assists, he would break Wayne Gretzky’s playoff point record in the third game of the Stanley Cup Finals in his 24th season.

    And, still assuming he plays 82 regular season games a year, and assuming he has no assists, he would break Wayne Gretzky’s point record in the 70th game of his 35th season.

  74. Breathe Smitthy, can we at least see the first game before we call for Rennys head?

    What has Prucha done to give him a spot over Dawes? Prucha is a defensive liability, and if he isn’t scoring what does he offer the team?

    I really could take or leave both Dawes and Prucha.

  75. Brandon,

    I think a line of fristche voros riss can be defensivily responsible while i cant say that for certainity. i think it can be. And like kevo said betts cant be out there against the other teams top lines. Thats part of my hatred for blair and renney. if blair played 5 mins a game i wouldnt be as mad. Beleive it or not i used to defend the use of blair. Maybe ill see u at the garden one game and we will share a drink.

  76. Yea, cause at the very least, they don’t have two assistant coaches that help Renney decide lol

  77. Sjostrom over Fristche?!
    Orr over Fritsche?!
    Voros over Fristche?!
    Betts over Fritsche?!

    Fritsche scored two goals in the limited time he was given. He’s fast. He’s smart. *HE’S YOUNG!* There is so much potential in that player, and he’s sitting for Colton Orr and Freddy Sjostrom!


  78. Beer Me! – It seems that you are right in your prediction from yesterday because I have not read one person who is happy with these lines. I will have to join that crowd. I love Dawes, but he did not show me much in preseason and in too many games last season. At least Prucha was busting his ass for the last couple of weeks, and I really think he should get into the first game, even disregarding the fact that it is being played in Prague. Unfortunately, if that report is true, he could be on the next Malik flight out of here. I can’t argue too much with the lines, but think Prucha should be in there with Korpioski and Callahan, pushing Sjostrom to the fourth line and Voros up to the second line. However, I can’t remember Voros playing on a scoring line during the preseason, so that might be problematic, but I like the speed and skill Sjostrom showed on the fourth line with us last season and think he can be very effective there.

    To everyone complaining about Drury not being the center, it is likely that he will take most of the faceoffs anyway, like whenever he played with Gomez last season. They will adjust from there.

    Are we splitting the two games between our goalies? The Lightning are starting Kolzig in the second game. If Lundqvist is fine, not tired or achy or anything, I feel like he should start both games. Ducks and Kings last season both started different goalies in their two games in London.

    New Newman – Sather has made a lot of shrewd moves, too, so I would not say that. The biggest one obviously trading for Jagr for about 50¢ on the dollar, along with only giving up Anson Carter.

    I have included a link to the Coyotes’ award-winning marketing campaign which strangely includes a snowman, since they are in the desert after all. I like his long “campaign” video the best, talking about a lot of different “issues.” It made me laugh sufficiently.

  79. Glad to see some people calling out Professor Renney…hate is a very strong word though..

    I do “hate” when people actually compare Renney’s defensive first system favorably to the recently successfull winners of the cups…it couldn’t be more different…Detroit and Anaheim play an aggressive style that pressures opponents; puck control ( Det) or forchecking (Ana) pressure-pressures -pressure the other team! Playing for wins…….Renney plays “responsible” and “appropriate” which means absorbing pressure, more often than not, relying on Hank, more often than not and…. playing for OT and the single point OT comes with, more often than not

  80. chill out over Renney people, remember since he has been here we have made in the playoffs. The others havent, i am willing to sacrifice for anything playoffs.

  81. doodie machetto on

    I like the lineup with a couple of exceptions:

    1) Sjostrom should be scratched for Prucha.
    2) One member of VBO should be scratched for Fritsche.

    What are the defensive pairings?

  82. “What are the defensive pairings?”

    While I don’t have an answer, that’s a very good question. Even more, its a very good time to bring up the fact that no one seems to be too concerned. And the D is no longer suspect. It’s been at least 10 years since we’ve had a group of 6-7 dmen that are this … (I use this word loosely) ‘good’.

    pig – All season its like that. There will never be a time that everyone is happy. “I say, TUFF SH*T. Then don’t watch”

    I also saw somewhere, no idea where, that Hank is supposed to start both games. Of course it depends on the way game 1 goes.

  83. Brandon,

    We had a great record with Avery in the REGULAR season. He did jack squat in round 2, twice in a row. That’s why he wasn’t re-signed.

    If maybe, just maybe, he did something more than score one goal in a game we blew a 3-0 on, and we went to the ECF because he made Cindy and Mlolkin cry, then maybe he’d get a contract in his current range from Slats. GOOD RIDDANCE to fashion boy.

  84. Sorry to do this, but for laughs, here is ecklund ( keep in mind Rangers “had” to announce roster today-league policy because guess what? they play tomorrow;

    from ecklund:

    The Rangers today decided to tell two of the young d-men that they are going to Hartford when the team returns to the Mainland….

    Why tell them this now when the team is still in Europe?

    Are the Rangers really going to carry on six defenseman when they return?

    Something is up and I am on it…

    Stay tuned…MUCH more to come.

    I just had a laughing-lasagna and pepsi burb ( the best burps are pepsi induced burbs)

  85. Carrying 15 forwards is absurd I’m sorry. Couple years ago the Rangers only carried 6 dmen and Kaspar got hurt during warmups and they had to go with 5 dmen the entire game and it hurt them. Later on in the year the same thing happened and Pock was only able to make it for the 2nd period. Renney didn’t learn from this sadly. Sjostrom, Betts, Rissmiller are all about as replaceable as can be. They should have dumped 2 of the 3. I though Prucha played well his last two Pre-Seasaon games and showed nice chemistry with Korpokoski and Cally. If you’re gonna go with that lineup you have to move up Voros to the third line to add some jam and Sjostrom does to add some speed to the 4th line. Voros-Betts-Orr is the slowest least skilled 4th line around. It took Renney 3 years to get over his love affair with Hossa how many will it take to get over his love for Betts?

  86. I heard that too Beer. You know what, you’re right about the moaning too…including myself. I’m just happy hockeys here and we get to start watching. I’ll let the team unfold. They’ve been at it a lot longer than me, so they know better…

    Also, someone posted on Zip’s blog saying he heard from someone at the Garden that there are rumblings of a deal involving Dawes, Prucha, Sanguinetti, and a 1st for Gaborik. Obviously not very reliable, but just thought I’d throw it out there

  87. something is going on with Prucha that is horrible to scratch him from playing in his hometown.

  88. I don’t know what I hate more. Suck-lund himself, or people posting his nonsense. Damn you Kaspar!

    I’m sure there will be some excuse when he finds out why the roster was announced. F’n jack-ass.

  89. I got no problem with Freddy over Pruchs. Both have trouble putting the puck in the net from time to time, and sure as shit are not consistent, but at least Freddy can kill penalties, and is more defensive. Pruchs on the other hand, cant even get a shift in OT, because Renney doesn’t trust the kid.

    I feel bad for him, and think he should at least get a spot on the 4th line, but that’s the way it goes. You go from a 30-20 goal scorer to 7, people forget aboot your talent.

    This is a nice move by Renney, maybe scratching him from the opener in Prague, that will fire him up beyond belief, and he’ll take it to heart, and wanna show everyone he actually has some skill, in front of his home land, and finally get his ass in gear, and his shit together.

  90. kevo – Whoever said anything about that ridiculous trade obviously forgot about a little thing called the salary cap. Those players clear us less than $3mil. Gaborik’s deal pays him $7.5 this year.

    graves9 – I don’t disagree with what you’re saying. But you need to replace “Renney” with “The Rangers”. Not 1 mans decision in NY. Never has been.

  91. Poopie Gonzalez on

    Brandon – I live in the building next door to Glen Sather on the UES. EVERY weekend I see him strolling with his wife on our block, smoking a cigar and looking like he’s the happiest MOFO in the world. When you have a boss as complacent as Dolan, I guess life is good.

  92. PAVEL

    He did nothing in round two ?!?!? Are you blind ? He scored a big goal in game 1, which didn’t matter in the end since we blew the lead, but he got injured in that game, and like a fool, played through it, even though, i think he didn’t know how bad it was, then boom, he was out for the series.

    Wasn’t his fault. Just cause he signed with Dallas, doesn’t mean you should forget the good things he did for the team. He had a pretty good run in the playoffs with NYR, its a damn shame he couldn’t last till the end.

    But that does bring us to the whole injury prone thingy. Im not sure whether Avery is or isn’t, but he did go through aboot 3 or 4 injuries last year.

  93. “He did nothing in round two ?!?!? Are you blind ? ‘

    And……dont forget he singlehandedly drove marty B out of his fat-headed mind….

  94. Yes I should forget the things he did for the team. I love the Rangers, not Player A. Avery got more money than Vrbata, yet he’s to have more than 18 goals a season. He played the Rangers’ fans to leverage a big contract out west. Screw him. I hope Voros lays him out when Avery goes offside.

  95. bob – I think the PK is as good as it is because ALL the players involved in it bought into a team-first atmosphere that was instilled when the current regime took the reigns of the team. 5-5, 5-4, 5-3, 4-4, 4-3…doesn’t matter. Team defense is a must.



  97. Let’s also keep in mind that the actual lineup does not need to be submitted until just before game time.

    I’m sure if Prucha shines some shoes, and irons some dress shirts, he can get in the lineup.

    The game is not until tomorrow. Save “your” bitching on it until then.

  98. “How disrespectful, cold and heartless to not play Prucha in his hometown”

    Plus! if the guy was ever going to be driven to play good what better place to jump start it that in Prague??? I guess the professor will let him sit until that big game we play in Raliegh

  99. “The moaning and groaning of the line combos is pathetic.”

    Agreed. Every coach changes lines game-to-game and on-the-fly based on performance, chemistry, match ups, etc.

  100. You guys are just making excuses now because it’s a new season and optimism hasn’t been completely crushed yet. Tell me what it means when Petr Nedved and Dan Fritsche outwork and outscore half a dozen other “bubble players” in preseason yet one is shown the door and the other is scratched for clods like Sjostrom and Orr?

    It stinks of Tom Renney’s favoritism is what. It is one of his biggest blind spots as a coach. He is fiercely loyal to underperforming players, whether they be Ryan Hollweg or Blair Betts or Nigel Dawes, at the expense of those who have earned a better chance.

  101. Beer Renney was Hossa’s greatest supporter and kept giving him chance after chance. Renney is also a huge supporter of Betts no one can deny that. He continues to extoll Betts’ virtues. I bet Renney has wet dreams about Bettsy clearing pucks down the ice. Rissmiller still being around is likely because of Sather’s reluctance to admit he made a mistake.


  103. Beer, I know its absolutely ridiculous. I meant to kind of show that but I forgot to lol…oh well

  104. Hey Beer
    That looks like a great place to watch the game

    too bad I live in vermont..only place to go tomorrow is a “save the earth organic farming” trade show…that everyone drives SUVS and Hummers to

  105. Couldn’t agree more Orr.

    Pavel, that was a poor team effort in the series. You can’t say “Avery did nothing” because NO ONE did anything spectacular, including King Henrik, who was fairly prince like.

    The only player who stood out was Jagr. He was a horse for us.

    Avery had a very good game 1 and was playing well until he got hurt in game 3. The whole team looked terrible in game 2.

    I’ll admit he was rather invisible in the Buffalo series but I think Buffalo just played him well and didn’t engage at all.

    Moot point really with him being gone.

    My intial statement was his relationship with Sather, or lack there of, played a factor in Sather’s decision making.

    We can all argue the impact of that factor, I’m just saying it was a factor.

  106. Matty – this is part of what beer was posting

    open the 2008-09 regular season vs. Tampa Bay on Oct. 4? The Rangers and MSG invite you to experience the next best view of the game during an exclusive big-screen, high-definition (HD) viewing party at the Bohemian Beer Garden in Astoria, Queens.

    Even the entryway to the Beer Garden suggests the feeling of being in Prague.
    At the Beer Garden, a popular nightspot for New Yorkers of Czech and Slovak ancestry, as well as immigrants and tourists, you’ll get a true Czech feeling for the game.

  107. no prob matty – its some kind of ‘czech beer garden’ in astoria. Don’t know much about it from here in jersey.

    graves9 – #68 wanted to play with Hossa. That responsibility is shared by Renney, Jags, slats. You know how each of them relate to the situation. No need to explain it.

    As far as betts goes…I was not always a supporter of his. And I wouldn’t exactly run out an buy a #15 jersey. But there’s no skater on the team that fills their designated role better than he does. Unless prucha’s role is to get b*tch-slapped once a game.


  109. Playing Hossa for 36 games last season is hardly a ‘supporter’. And 64 games each the previous two years. At some point, we all thought maybe he could break out. We just gave up on him sooner.

  110. By the same logic, Renney is an even bigger supporter of Prucha, having played him in 62 games last season. So you can stick to that if you want. But its not an accurate assessment.

  111. Do the genius types who drill Avery for disappearing in the second round of the playoffs hold Renney to the same standard?

  112. matty – try Stout -very big lots of tv’s in playoffs at least had ranger flags hanging. downstairs too. understand owner is huge ranger fan.

    it is very near garden maybe 33rd give or take a block heading east toward 6th but closer to 7th.

  113. On a different note;

    are they ever going to correct the time on this blog?? Beer Me! has been late to work every day for like 5 months…..

  114. Gordon Bombay on

    Stout is an awesome place…..great food, lots of beer and good times. Always hit it up when you are in the city or for a Rangers game

  115. Stout is cool. The Blarney Rock is a few doors down (on 33rd). Small hole in the wall, but those walls are plastered with ‘Rangers’, and some nice big plasmas in the back.

  116. Who is going to opening night at the garden again and meeting up? I know I will be there with Mrs. Nasty.

  117. Hossa only played 64 games each his first two years because of injuries. Renney had him on the second line the first half of 05-06 once they got Sykora Renney broke up the HMO line to get Hossa in the lineup. He continued to play and give him chances in 06-07 until he finally had a couple of great weeks playing with Jagr. Renney like alot of coaches surely plays favorites. It drives me up a wall when late in a game when the Rangers have an offensive zone face-off instead of putting an offensive line he puts the Betts line on the ice.

  118. Way to stick to a prediction here Mr. Muir. Ya jack-ass…1st or worst?

    “BOTTOM LINE PREDICTION: The Rangers might be the toughest team in the East to call. Best-case scenario: Naslund and Redden benefit from a change in locale and return to all-star form while Zherdev finally lives up to the responsibility of his immense physical gifts. In that case, the Rangers challenge for first in the division. The more likely outcome, though, is that they spin their wheels and struggle to build on last season. The playoffs may be out of the picture.”

  119. kaspar maybe they can fix it a week before we change the clocks so it can be wrong for next few months as well. i have it on good info that they will fix when they update Sam’s and Josh’s bios.

  120. cmb572 …

    I agree, im so glad that another kid from Hartford is getting a chance to play this season!!! I think next year we could see 4 or 5 kids from Hartford be moved up. With the amount of 1 year contracts on the team this year (Nikolai Zherdev, Petr Prucha, Aaron Voros, Pat Rissmiller, Dan Fritsche, Brandon Dubinsky, Blair Betts, Nigel Dawes, Ryan Calahan, Colton Orr, Paul Mara, Dimitri Kalinin, Freddy Sjostrom and Vally)

    We could definitely see any combo of these players make the team Next year: Cherepanov, Anisimov, Weise, Byers, Moore, Sanguenetti, Potter, Fahey, Jamtin, Wiikman. I think since DelZotto and Kundratek and young D-men, they could be 2 years away??

    The Future is bright though.

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