Some pre-game stuff


No John Tortorella presser tonight … he spoke after the morning skate. Said, pretty much, that the last thing he’s thinking about is seedings and home-ice advantage in the playoffs (I completely agree, home-ice is meaningless).


Since a lot of you have been discussing Chris Kreider today, here’s the deal. First of all, Boston College earned the No. 1 seed in the NCAA tournament and will play Air Force in the first round Saturday.

As you know, the Frozen Four is April 5-7 in Tampa, which is also the dates of the Rangers’ final two games of the regular season. So if B.C. gets that far, Kreider will not be signing before the regular-season ends.

And many of you have concerns over his three-year entry-level contract kick starting. Well, I assure you the Rangers are not concerned about that. In fact, they will use that as an incentive to get Kreider signed. He gets a pile of money and a year closer to arbitration, a year closer to restricted free agency, without playing. That’s what they’d dangle in front of him. So it’s pretty certain that he will sign as soon as B.C. is done.

The organization doesn’t worry about the same types of things fans worry about — how they’ll have to increase his salary sooner, etc. Plus that could all change when the new CBA is in place.

But to expect that Kreider is going to skate out of college and into a Stanley Cup playoff game, is extremely unlikely. Or even if he gets here with a couple of games left in the season, the odds of him replacing somebody in the current lineup — barring a slew of injuries — is doubtful. Now, that all could change — and we’ve seen this before — if the Rangers are in a playoff series and guys aren’t getting their jobs done and John Tortorella wants to try to shake it up a little bit.

Under normal circumstances, though, don’t expect to see a lot of Kreider in the Rangers lineup … until he goes through a training camp with them.


Also, we have 10 games left after tonight and I still need a bunch more volunteers to do Three Stars after those games. So, if you are interested, please e-mail me at


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  1. JimboWoodside on

    Well, I’ll bet Mr. Dolan hopes that they get home-ice advantage in as many series as they can survive in – more home games, more MONEY!!

  2. Also, as LB mentioned some time ago, there is a good possibility, once the new CBA is ironed out, of ELCs being for less money and with less signing bonus percentage, as it was changed already in 2005. He has a lot of incentives to sign, indeed.

  3. JimboWoodside on

    Saw something on NHL Network about the Blues – it’s really amazing how they turned their season around – 100 points, leading the NHL, and clinched a playoff berth.

    Earlier in the season we were wondering if JD was gonna get canned, along with their coach – they sign Hitchcock, and their whole season turns around. Pretty impressive.

  4. Kreider needs to sign so we can determine whether he’s the next Jessiman, Dubloswky or Steve Rice.

  5. nyrmessier011 on

    Winning the division avoids a first round match up with pitt or philly. It’s important not only in having a higher probability to advance, but also you avoid a beat the hell out of eachother round 1. I don’t buy anyones argument saying it’s not important this year who wins the atlantic.

  6. JimboWoodside on

    Really disliking the fact that we have these next few games on “national” TV – we don’t the pre-game or post-game shows, we have to be subjected to The Screamer doing our home game, as if he was calling a Devils home game, and we have to put up with the rest of the Versus/Comcast slugs..

    Sam & Joe have been annoying enough lately, but I still prefer them to what we’re gonna get.

  7. I agree about Kreider. He’s not going to get much, if any playing time. How many guys straight out of college come in and start scoring goals? A full off season and training camp is what he needs and if Torts thinks he needs to spend some time with the Whale, then that’s OK. It did wonders for Del Zotto.

  8. nyrmess, yeah, but it’s not so important that you go in thinking you’re done if you get the No. 4 or 5 seed … especially because Pitt might go 21-0 and it won’t matter what the Rangers do.

  9. Almost every year there’s a 1 v 8 or 2 v 7 matchup that goes much longer than you’d expect. Last year it was Chicago taking Vancovuer to 7 games in OT, year before it was Montreal knocking off the Caps, before that the Rangers as 7th took the Caps to 7. Pretty much any playoff team can beat any other.

  10. And if you’re afraid of the better teams in the East what difference does it make if you face them in the first round or later?

  11. I would hope Kreider would play. He has to be an upgrade over Mitchell and Fedotenko. Boyle and Prust also can be replaced short term to get a spark as well as Rupp. Rangers have too many 4rth liners and not enough 2nd or 3rd liners.

  12. also this … not saying it’s an advantage whatsoever to finish fourth instead of first … but there would be an awful lot of pressure to be the No. 1 seed against a team that’s going to squeak in on the final day and come to MSG playing with house money. Just sayin.

    Whereas the No. 4 (or 5) seed would make the playoffs kind of a re-start for the Rangers.

  13. Either way, it’s more important to regain the way they’ve played all year..One of the reasons they had a healthy point cushion was because they were able to avoid prolonged streaks without gaining any points. Other teams couldn’t avoid that. Now the Rangers lost a few in regulation and the teams are catching up. Expected during the season. How they play going into the playoffs will determine how far they go.

  14. I finally figured out how ilb gets all the firsts! Carp gives him advance notice of new posts. CONSPIRACY!!!

  15. I hear Alexei Kovalev is going to have his stick retired on Wednesday night at the Garden. Do we have any big Kovalev fans that are going to the game?

  16. Jim Cerny told me that Dan Girardi did an interview on Blueshirt United where he talked about how first place is important, because it’s a goal they have, but that they haven’t given any attention to the standings, and that it’s much, much more important for them to be playing the way they need to play headed into the playoffs …

    also, I’m thinking Pitt is doing them a favor in an odd way. Because of the Penguins just zoom past the Rangers by going 21-0 or 19-2 or whatever, it won’t be that the Rangers choked away their lead.

  17. who hates Tortds? He is a great coach, his media routine is a little much and disrespectful but I have all the confidence in the world in Torts. Players love him, he motivates tehm, he has a plan, he is a great coach. Hope he stays for the next 3 to 5 years or more.

    Hope he can see these core thru on their journey over the next few years….

    Jaden Schwartz scored the other night for St louis, he is a ELA guy also. Hoep BC loses immediately, love to get Kreider in for some regular season games, goin in to start the playoffs is a bit of a stretch……..

  18. Krieder’s NHL debut will be game 7 of a playoff series, and he’ll have a hat trick, including a game-winner in triple OT. That’s how it always happens with college kids, right?

  19. awaiting the answer, CTB.

    Does anybody know a site where I can find the home/away records of all teams during the playoffs last year, especially the first round? Because i’m spraining my fingers surfing the net trying to find it. Also the year before.

  20. “Wonder if people in St. Louis hate Hitchcock the way some people here hate Tortorella.”

    Nah. Hitchcock is notoriously hard on his players, has his teams playing a pretty unattractive, grinding defensive style in part due to a lack of offensive talent and won a Cup pre-lockout and has been living off it ever since. Totally different situation.

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