And we’re off … already


So many questions so quickly. Wow! Great job, gang.

I am still doing my columns at The Journal News and at in addition to this blog and Faceoff with Sam Borden. So I’m busy, and we’re still figuring out the logistics of filling in for Sam …

Long story short, I have to go to an event now to write a column, so I will answer a few questions quickly then run, and I’ll stop back here later tonight: 

Thanks for the welcome. I don’t think Mr. Glen ever liked me because, from Day 1 (June 1, 2000) I said he was a bad hire, and because I have always pointed out how Dolan just loves the guy and gave him a job for life … that said, I think Slats has done a much better job the last few years.

Renney? I think most of you know where I stand on him. But we’ll get into that again in the coming days. Let’s just say that after Muckler-Low-Trottier-Sather, he looks pretty good. Still. Remind me to tell you my favorite Muckler story (or stories) later.

I think the new guy (not me, this kid from Minnesota) will probably go to the minors first, but I could be wrong.

I am a Prucha fan. I know he is lacking in some areas, but geez, when you need goals … you can’t teach those.

And, no, I don’t think Renney calls the personnel shots, although I am certain he has input.

Mr. Dellapina, good to hear from you, too. Sorry I wasn’t in Montreal with you guys. See you Tuesday at MSG, right?

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  1. Fritsche traded to Wild for D Erik Reitz. I live in houston and watched Reitz play for aeros. He is good and can help Hartford or NYR.

  2. I heard Reitz like to drop his gloves.. maybe we can finally start alternating and scratching Orr? I have nothing against what he brings, but sometimes his lack of speed is a hindrance on the 4th line.

  3. What happened to Sam ? Was the loss last night that depressing that he couldn’t show up for work, lol. I know the feeling, all too well.

    Glad to see Danny F gone, there just isn’t any room for him here. My gf is a Wild fan, and she said that Reitz is a decent d-man who like Zherv said, likes to drop the gloves, and he’ll do good for Hartford, and maybe even Nyr someday. Which will be hard to believe with Potter, Sags, Sauer, and eventually Del Z in front of him.

    I cant wait till the trade deadline, i hope a team is willing to take Kalinin.

  4. Hey Rick, if you had to choose, how would you say the rangers would look at trading first and for who? BTW, glad to see you answering our questions. Thanks!

  5. Rick,

    Please understand that Orr lives the good life and doesn’t have to be up before 1 p.m. so he was unable to see the news as Sam broke it live.

  6. There’s definitely room for a 7th D now. I just hope Renney doesn’t let Potter, Sangs, etc rot in the stands while the same 6 continue. As bad as Kalinin has been, I’d much rather see Redden sit out for a game to think about his position on this team.

  7. I’m just hoping that this Reitz move isn’t a substitution move for what Sather should do, acquire Denis Gauthier. But nonetheless, it’s a good depth move, as long as it’s just a depth move.

  8. Yo-mamma-ween…

    The Buffalo Sabres goalie let a Dion Phaneuf shot from the corner trickle through his pads last night in a unusually rough outing during a 5-2 loss to the Calgary Flames at the Saddledome.

    “I did my best impression of Roger Dorn from Major League, ground balls constantly going through me,” Miller said, referencing the Corbin Bernsen character who couldn’t stop anything at third base.

  9. Hey Rick,

    As much as I will miss Sam, I’d like to welcome you back. I’ve always liked your writing so the Rangers Report is in good hands.

    With that, is the Fritsche trade simply the first step for Sather? Or is he just trimming some fat off the payroll and little else?

  10. Welcome Carp.

    Nice to see JDP chime in. JDP, you see my blogname…we used to talk a lot on your Blueshirts Blog…wondering if you can figure who I am?

    In any case Carp, if you said in 2000 that Sather was a bad hire you are a visionary. If he held it against you, don’t take offense….he is a pompous ass living off the 1980s. If Isaiah Thomas is still on the MSG payroll, Sather might have to kill somebody to lose his job.

    Seriously though, can you fathom what he was thinking stacking this team with 12 3rd and 4th liners this season? And what exactly was he thinking in signing Redden with Bouwmeester and Komisarek becoming FAs this year?

    Last question: Let’s make the WILD assumption that this team makes the playoffs. Of the current 12 Fs and 6 Ds, how many new faces might there be on the playoff roster?

  11. Did I say that Renney calls the shots? I don’t think that’s what I said…(Frankly tho, I don’t think sather give a puck at all what’s happening around him) what I did say was that if renney wanted a certain player on the team to stay or be acquired then he certainly has some weight in making that happen… again coming back to Dreaden and Perry Pearn… and Pearn isn’t even a head coach… but his wish was granted… and now for the next six years it will be like in that Mexican Food story shared by Nasty 1 earlier today… only we don’t get to enjoy the meal… our pants are full of crap already…

    And also, as I remember Sather wanted up-tempo team… brought in the type of players to play that style of game… Renney goes along and promises to change the style… but after few games of the season goes back into defense first mentality… sather is cool with it and lets Renney do his thing… which contradicts Slats completely… so, who’s full of shit? Slats? Renney? Or both of them?

  12. “hey noonan u still play PS3 NHL 09? what was the name of your league?”

    CCCP: yes I do; best game ever. I had a league but dropped out of it because it was having problems. Joined a new league and have been gaining EXP for my Be a Pro! character.

    Add my PSN: otherone81

    and we’ll get some games going!

  13. carpinnellois back,ugh.
    beer me will love him, carp loves ranger coaches, kneeled at the alter of colin campbell for years. it will never be renney’s fault under carps watch.

  14. “360 > psweaksales”

    i gots the sick gamez like i gives a puck what the sales are looking like :)

    oh, and have fun when your shitbox breaks! teehee!

  15. Welcome back to full-time duty. Why do you think Sather and his assistant GMs are so invisible? Don Maloney used to constantly appear on tv, even when the team was at its worst after the purge. Renney is always available, but management should be speaking. Why is Sather allowed to constantly avoid the media?

  16. CCCP said: “Did I say that Renney calls the shots? I don’t think that’s what I said…”

    CCCP said: “Im pretty sure if renney wanted shany he would have him on the team… same with Jagr and Avery”

    If you’d like to withdraw either comment, it’s cool. Which one?

    Dog – Maybe we’re just not afraid to be on the side of the fence opposite of the “I told you so’s”. Barring illness, death, criminal offenses, expelled by the league, or the likes… name one coach in NHL that’s never been fired. They all are eventually fired.

  17. Jagr hated Renney. That’s why he dogged it until March because he realized he was in a contract year. Jagr said he wanted to be the highest paid player on the team, but then turns around and says he’d play for league minimum with Pittsburgh.

    Shanny hated Renney.

    Leetch hated Renney (and Slats). Remember when Renney wanted him to come back?

    I’m sure everyone except Betts hates Renney.

  18. Hey Rick

    Welcome…we need you to weigh in on the current playoff race in the KHL soon too…besides settling the debate of “RANGERS DONT SCORE BECAUSE OF RENNEY” or “THE RANGERS DONT SCORE BECAUSE OF SATHER” or “THE RANGERS DONT SCORE BECAUSE THEY’RE CURSED”

  19. “name one coach in NHL that’s never been fired. They all are eventually fired.”

    Barry Trotz in nashville has been there since they started. and I believe that Lindy Ruff in Buff has never been fired from a NHL head coaching job.

  20. Beer Me! i appreciate your effort for finding my comments copying and pasting them!! Thank You! No, I will stand by all of my comments like a true Russian! Maybe I need to have a BEER to fully make myself clear to Beer Me! Wanting a player on the team and having a word as a head coach in the way your team is assembled… that is what im saying… Slats is calling the shots or so we think… but renney has the ability influencing those shots… no doubt about it

  21. beer,
    i enjoy your loyalty to the rangers and renney. i had been as loyal as you with coaches till the end of roger neilson. i knew he had run his course and had to go. every coach that followed, starting with campbell, i did not like. until renney. i liked renney, up until midway through last year. he has become way to stubborn, and conservative,and coaches games not to lose, instead of to win. i feel about renney, the same way i felt about nielson, he has run his course, he is not going to take them any further than the second round of the playoffs, and in order for the rangers to be true contenders he must go. and beer, i really hope i am wrong.

  22. Rick,

    Just one thought upon this constantly growing Renney debate (I admit I am… not so fond of him) that I’d like to share with you;

    A couple of the folks these neck of the web – me included – think that it would be nice to see a beat reporter who not only have tremendous writing and observatory skills but some edge too.

    Do you agree with the theory that Tom Renney is playing a “dodge loss”-game, a game where every win is questionable and every loss is harsh? Are the Rangers (by Renneys hand) actually trying to be a “non-losing team” as opposed to a “winning team”.

    Oh, and welcome, nice to have you.

  23. Renney is hated by all offensive players, going all the way back to Messier in Vanc, because he wants them to play his stifling, boring, defensive system. and their offensive output suffers as a result.

    I agree that he will never take a team past the early rounds because his system is more like the Minn Wild than the top teams in the league.

  24. CCCP

    Ever play Strato-matic hockey board game? I didnt have user name but they used to call me SHAKEY

  25. CCCP: excellent.

    Do you play regular versus or league play?

    For EA league Be a Pro! I play Right D (Mike game over Green style!)

    I’ll be on later tonight!

  26. i play it all noonan… im pretty versatile!! lol

    hey kaspar…where i grew up the games we had were games like “identify the dead body, and if it’s your friend go tell his parents” or another trendy game called “who left half a tank here with ammunition inside”… very popular with older crowd…

  27. So as for this Reitz guy; let’s see what he can do. Maybe he’ll like NY and can develop into a Beachemoun type; doubtful but you never know. It’ll be good to have him work with Orr, maybe he’ll learn some fighting skills. He’s a pretty late bloomer too, and sometimes players go to certain teams and just play good (Sean Hill on Carolina) so I’m all for giving him a shot, maybe him and Mara can be the big slow guys like in Nintendo’s Ice Hockey and beat everyone up.

    Welcome back Carp! As I’ve said before, always loved your Sunday column and your books too!

    Good luck to Sam, I’ll be keeping an eye on his career out of respect/admiration.

  28. yea. why exactly had Prucha been relegated to the bench again??

    Prucha is a better player then Voros irregardles of size…..

    If they can just trade or sit Kalinan then I would be happy.. Look at Drury without prucha on his line, much less O from Drury and Dawes..

    Ask renny what the story is on Prucha, please………

  29. Voros is a physical non-presence besides standing his big ass in front of the crease and hoping a shot deflects off of him, or occasionally jumping in as a third man to get his ass beat and put the team down a man.

    Prucha is in top physical shape, in spite of sitting in the press box, and is a bigger physical presence on the ice. He had a bad ass open ice hit against Pittsburgh. He also got virtually no PP time.

    Good deal to get rid of Fritsche. Too many spare parts

  30. alex b (the poster formely known as czechthemout!!!!) on

    Once again Sather goes outside the orginization for someone elses crap instead of giving his own home grown talent the rightfull chance to play. As a young kid busting his ass down there to impress(and he has)Potter has to be fuming!!!!!

  31. To be fair, Potter doesn’t have great numbers in Hartford and is still only 24; he has another year or two left before he’s officially written off so if Corey is reading this (haah), this summer, train like you’re Batman. This Reitz guy is pretty much like a Strudwick and maybe he’ll be a good team guy. They got him for a guy who was gonna be let go anyways in Fritsche so no biggie and Potter can play every night and Sags can get 1st pair minutes in HFD.

    No one is taking Kalinin, Rangers are stuck with him this year. Just be lucky he’ll probably be gone after this year.

    I’m fine with this, I just really wanna see Anisimov and if he can be a spark and create some room for Nicky Z/Dubi or even if he’s paired with Drury/Dawes.

  32. Dubi or not Dubi on

    I’m very excited to have Rick back! Not to date him, but I remember reading his articles as a kid and I was disappointed when he stopped covering the Rangers. I couldn’t be happier! Well, strike that, losing Sather and Renney and a couple of these contracts would make me a bit happier than that.

  33. hello all-
    it is not yet very wide spread but the rangers just traded dan fritsche to minesota for a 26 year old defensman named Erik Reitz from. He appears to be a defensive D-man who may help the rangers patch a hole or two on the D-line

  34. alex b hit the nail on the head. sather is up to his old tricks and if he is like strudwick then no thanks. we need players who are good on the ice not in the locker room. im not saying i expected anything for fritchee but sure hope a kid from hartford gets a shot before this guy

  35. i think (hope) this trade sets up other trades. rangers now have surplus dmen. many teams are looking for help on the blue line so this could set up a trade involving one of our dmen for a scorer? plus, if they trade a dman from the nhl roster that will clear up space for the young dmen in hartford.

  36. Never thought I would say this, but the Devils are a hell of a team and actually exciting to watch lately. I hate it.

  37. I hate the Devils but you’ve got to give them credit.
    Second game in a row where Gionta throws it in front
    from the boards and banks in in off Elias’ skate.
    There’s always someone consistently driving to the
    net or standing in front of the net. The winning goal
    tonight was scored with two Devils planted in front of
    the net. What Ranger consistently drives to the net?
    Callahan? Prucha? Each one of the Ranger’s lines should
    have one guy whos’ job is to get to the front of the net.

  38. Ilya Kovalchuk
    January 29th, 2009 at 7:29 pm
    Ya know, this whole back checking thing just isn’t for me

    Then we don’t want you in NY!

  39. staal – that says it all that the wild would rather dump his minor salary than take fritsche off waivers.

    cakewalk – but avery is not 16 to 20. he is way too old for your type of player. plus he is a clubhouse killer and cares alot more about fashion than hockey. that is 1 move sather got right this summer.

  40. Nasty 1 January 29th, 2009 at 9:33 pm
    Never thought I would say this, but the Devils are a hell of a team and actually exciting to watch lately. I hate it.

    and someone on here said that its not the coach that make the players play… BEER anyone? :)

  41. just like sather to not just give up a mistake, always needs something back in return, even though it would just clog up more cap space/roster room
    – and i’ve seen reitz play in the ahl here in houston. let him play, call up potter too and dump kalinin!

  42. All Hail King Henrik on

    If Reitz can come into the lineup and at least challenge Kalinin for playing time, who cares if Corey Potter has to stay down in Hartford? If Reitz comes in and plays solid defense (he is coming from Minnesota-Lemaire), throws the body a bit and drops the gloves, that would be great. If there’s one thing Minnesota defenseman can do it’s play defense.

    A physical, crease-clearing stay at home defenseman that will fight. That’s exactly what we need, even if he’s a lower pair guy.

    Besides Orr, no one on this team is a real fighting threat. Voros loses everytime he does, and Dubi/Staal/Mara just aren’t that great at it.

    At worst, this gives us another player in the lineup that can mix it up when we play physical teams like Philly, NJ, Boston, etc. At best, it gives us that element plus crease-clearing, physical play from our (hopefully) 6th dman.

    Maybe Reitz steals Kalinin’s spot (like Malik last year) and Potter can challenge Kalinin for the 7th slot,

  43. with sundin vanc is 1-5-2

    Despite adding prized free-agent forward Mats Sundin and welcoming back goaltender Roberto Luongo from a serious groin injury, Vancouver is suffering through a seven-game losing streak that has seen the team slip all the way to 10th in the Western Conference standings

    Sundin has been held to just two goals and an assist, has been in the penalty box for three game-winning goals

    gotta love the comments

    Bench Sundin or put him on the ir list and that will help;; this signing is gaining momentum to be one of the worst in history.. Get rid of the virus

    Sundin was a real improvement for this team .What a waste of money

    they have not wasted the organization money on Sundin, but destroyed the whole team! and you wonder why the leafs didn’t get anywhere for the whole time he was in there. You didn’t ask yourself this question? Sorry Sundin, it looks like you will never win a cup in ur life.

    Maybe it’s time to get rid of the coach. Get someone who can put a couple of lines together without juggling them every other line change. Maybe Pat Quinn is available

    vigneault changes his lines more than his underwear… make some decisions…

    Over the last 10 games the Nucks are the worst team in the league. 1-5-4 won’t get a playoff spot. Time for some changes. What happened to the “Mattsiah

    Something needs to happen this off season. We need to change, no more Vigneault, and more offense please. We don’t necessarily need a big name, but a guy who can make things happen. And for the love of god, don’t get another guy like Sundin please

    hope this puts this nonsense of starting mid season to end once and for all. Sundin looks horrible, and Niedermeyer struggled out of the gate last year as well. This is the best hockey league in the world and it’s arrogant to think you can start your season when you are ready, and keep the pace. Vancouver took a gamble and lost big time

    Would love to see Torterella behind the bench

  44. All Hail King Henrik on

    …I would’ve liked to see Corey Potter make the big club too, but if this is what it’s going to take to get rid of Kalinin, then so be it.

    If Reitz played 31 games under Lemaire, you know he can play defense. Minny seems to have a lot of stay at home defenseman, and very few puck-moving offensive defenseman. They probably saw Reitz as expendable because of that. There’s nothing to suggest they got rid of him because he is worthless.

    Hopefully he can be a good fit for us, as we really don’t need him to be anything but a stay at home D.

  45. All Hail King Henrik on

    LI Joe,

    I love to hear those comments. After seeing Mats take the money and run so to speak, there’s not many things I want to see more than Vancouver miss the playoffs.

    For months and months, he dragged on this process of “choosing the right fit for me”; rambled on and on about how he only wanted to play for a cup contender, and he was only coming back to compete for the cup, yada yada yada. In the end, he took the money like everyone else.

    How great will it be if Vancouver misses the playoffs? He’ll have come back for nothing.

    The NYR are no cup contender either, but we’re more of a threat than Vanocuver.

    Have fun with that travel, Mats. Hope ya miss the big show!

  46. all hail i read through them and tried to put the best in. i’m pretty sure more are being posted. and since vanc is 3 hrs behind us the best comments are probably yet to come as the night owls post with liquid courage.

  47. All Hail King Henrik on

    P.S. TSN’s analyst was RIPPING Sundin last night in Vancouver’s lost to Nashville. I only watched some of the third, but there was a long dialogue about how Sundin isn’t moving his feet, and that he clearly needs to be moving his feet to be effective.

    They showed a few clips of him coasting from the redline in, on the attack. He just stopped skating after he crossed the redline and simply coasted into the zone as his winger ragged the puck up ice. Pretty funny stuff.

    They were also criticizing him for taking short shifts, citing 18 & 23 second shifts of his. Basically, they said he’s out of shape at this point.

    I believe it was a national broadcast, but I’m not sure. The analyst was really giving it to Sundin, though. I’m not sure I’ve heard worse criticism of a player during the game without said player commiting something egregious, be it a penalty, mistake, or whatever. They were just destroying every aspect of his game on TV. Good stuff.

  48. well couldn’t happen to a greater group of fans. i went to game 6 in 94′ stayed overnight. heard 1940 all night long. they thought they had us. they were wrong. and they rioted after game 7. and people think NYers are classless.

  49. All Hail King Henrik on

    Just checked the standings. They’re in 11th place with 51 points, but seeds 7 through 11 all have 51 points.

    All of the teams in front of them have at least 1 game in hand, and Vancouver has the least number of wins with 22.

  50. Hockeyman Rangers on

    RICK, WELCOME You have some very big shoes to fill, I/we absolutley loved the way Sam took care of us, and got us the inside locker room information. I am confident that you can do the same but obviously is yet to be seen. Looking forward to your post’s.
    Now if we can just get the Rangers on the straight and narrow all will be good in life HA HA.

  51. cccp – I still don’t get your comments. They don’t make any sense to me. I think it’s better to just not communicate with each other. Enjoy the rest of the season.

  52. Is it even going to be worth making an attempt to watch the game tomorrow? Afternoon games against Boston, or anybody for that matter, are usually brutal. Chara’s shootout winning slap shot last year was insane.

  53. Reitz….time will tell. I just went on Youtube and saw him in 4 fights. He beat Travis Moen, lost two others, and drew with Asham (I am being generous on that one). The guy wears a shield, how tough can he be? So Sather got a 6/7th D-man for Fritsche, OK, fine. But do we think this guy is the crushing D-man for the front of the net or the PP QB? I think not.

    And for all those saying Kalinin is the soft D-man, in the last 12-15 games or so he has actually played alright and I think his +/- has come down from -17 or -18 to -9. So he is on the uptick. If I was the coach/GM and it was purely meritocracy, Redden would sit and watch for a game.

    Glad they got rid of Fritsche, but this was purely a cosmetic move, in my view.

  54. Funny link Beer. They should have the ice c**ts go into the stands and give happy endings in your seat. Maybe they’d sell a few tiks.

  55. Yeah, an afternoon game in general doesn’t really give me any reason at all to get excited. The last time we played well in an afternoon game was when we beat San Jose last year. I can not think of any other in recent memory.

  56. doodie machetto on

    “Never thought I would say this, but the Devils are a hell of a team and actually exciting to watch lately. I hate it.”

    Yeah man, they’re a really good club. Lou saw that he couldn’t just rely on his defenders with Stevens, Niedermayer, and Rafalski all gone, and he turned them into a good puck possession team, everyone having a specific role. He is by the best GM in the NHL, with Ken Holland a close second.

    As for Reitz, I think he goes to the A so we can bring up one of the Pack. Probably Potter, but possibly Sanguinetti.

  57. BillyDeeWilliams on

    I miss yesterdays posts, come back today, and sam is gone. it was nice while it lasted. I just hope everything is as up to date, personal, and in depth as when Sam was writing.

  58. Yeah Doodie, I agree on Lou. I can say that I hate the Devils, but I respect the hell out of that franchise. Every year most people think that this is the year they are going to tank, and this year we had every reason to believe that they would, but Marty got hurt and I think that forced them to come together as a team and play better. It will be interesting to see what happens when Marty comes back. For some reason, I think we as a team are more in Marty’s head than the whole teams head. I think with him and net, we are still unbeaten against them.

    If Marty comes back, and he plays dominant and the team doesn’t let down in play just because he is back, they could be a lot of trouble come playoff time.

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