Rangers-Canadiens in review

223

Thoughts:

1) Speed, speed, speed, speed, speed.

2) IMO, and I’ve said this before, Carl Hagelin has been the Rangers’ best player since he came back. There were three or four  or five remarkable plays in the first half of this game … A play when Justin Falk was trapped up ice, and Hagelin sped back to break up an odd-man rush … his pressure on the puck that drew the too-many-men penalty … his play on the penalty kill when the Habs had a bit of a shooting gallery going in the second … his play on the PP, in the defensive zone, when Brad Richards was under siege, and resulting in the 5-on-3 power play. He was on P.K. Slewfoot all night.

New York Rangers  v Montreal Canadiens3) Calm Talbot. Yowzer, first Rangers shutout in Montreal since Eddie Giacomin in 1967? First NHL shutout for the rookie? I like that he facewashed Brandon Prust in the first-period scrum around his net. The kid was pretty cool, wasn’t he? And he needed a shutout in this game, needed to be really good, under some difficult pressure by the Habs and in a place that, obviously, has been tough for the Rangers to win. Splendid performance. He outplayed Carey Price, too, and I thought Price was sensational …  as good or better than he was in all of those previous shutouts he hung on the Rangers over the years.

4) That Ryan Callahan goal won’t go down as a 5-on-3 goal because the first penalty had just expired, but man has the 5-on-3 looked good this year … especially compared to the last few years. The Rangers were leading the NHL with three 5-on-3 goals.

5) And Callahan, while not spectacular in this game, I thought looked a lot closer to being himself than he has at any point since coming back from the thumb injury. Mind you, he hasn’t been bad at all.

6) Chris Kreider is the whole package now. Even his biggest fans, or the biggest Torts hater, can’t tell me he ever played this way in his other opportunities, that he ever asserted himself, even in the minors, like this. That penalty he was assessed may or may not have been justified, but Slewfoot got away with twice kicking out Kreider’s skates and then a rabbit punch before the call. The shot off the post was impressive, wasn’t it?New York Rangers  v Montreal Canadiens (I meant, The Kreider).

7) J.T. Miller had the great chance, too. He’s had some hiccups, like the one he had in the second period when he failed to get one in deep. I think they should keep him around a while, though, because this team is suddenly one of the fastest around, and with Rick Nash coming back soon, will be even faster. Unless Miller really gets overwhelmed, his wheels are worth keeping.

8) Must have been really tough for Justin Falk to go in and then to play third pair, then to play the wrong side. Didn’t mind him at all. And he gives you that little bit of edge, too. I don’t think they will change the lineup tonight off a win. Anyway, I’d bet Michael Del Zotto is back in there soon.

9) I wondered, as you know, if the Rangers had the skill to play this style … and I’m starting to think they do. But let’s face it, they’ve gotten better this season as they’ve learned to defend within this system, and they certainly have done that. That said, don’t underestimate the importance of the guys like Dominic Moore and Brian Boyle in a game like this, with all those icing faceoffs, a lot of D-zone draws, and a ton of simple plays in a game when the Rangers were protecting a one-goal lead for a really long time.

New York Rangers  v Montreal Canadiens10) I thought the good PK at the start kinda got them going.

11) ICYMI, Rick Nash hopes to play Tuesday vs. Boston (watch out for that Lucic Monster thing) or Thursday in Dallas. They really shouldn’t rush him, and I don’t think they will. Man, this lineup might look good if he can be himself and stay healthy.

12) Wonder if the Rangers’ offense was slowed by having to play on that smooth sheet of ice.

13) Rangers right back at it tonight against the Kings, minus Jonathan Quick (he of the gift goal of the season). What is up with all these goalie injuries?

14) I want to see a game where the Canadiens wear their red and the Rangers wear their blue. Why not?

15) Off topic, The Heidi Game, 45 years ago today.

*********************************
My Three Rangers Stars:Cam Talbot, Marc Staal,
1. Calm Talbot.
2. Carl Hagelin.
3. Chris Kreider.
*********************************
Your poll vote for Three Rangers Stars:
1. Cam Talbot.
2. Chris Kreider.
3. Ryan Callahan.
*********************************
Photos by Getty Images (top four) and Associated Press (bottom).

Twitter: @rangersreport.

 

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223 Comments

  1. that was a good game.

    even though we never got that insurance goal, I never really felt threatened.

    Kreider kicked some axe tonight too. He gets a little meaner and Nash will be begging for him on his line over Richards.

  2. Um, am i missing something? you think the rangers will get even faster when Nash gets back? pretty sure whoevers playing time and top 6 spot he’s taking will have more speed than he does, and Nash is never one to bring up team speed regardless….
    The pace he plays at even more than his individual speed insures that.

  3. you are not missing anything Joe,
    Nash will slow the team down. not because he is a slow skater, but because of his game. he plays an individual game. the Rangers are fast right now because the puck moves. there is not a lot of carrying the puck going on. Hagelin flies down the wing, the puck goes to him. same with Kreider. once Nash gets the puck, it dies with him and his spin o rama to nowhere.

  4. He probably won’t feel pressure to try to deke out the whole other opposing team anymore…we actually have speed and some skill now. Who’da thunkit?

  5. Nice write-up, Carp. Cam Talbot reminds me of Dan Blackburn…the Ranger D was great last night, and their speed getting on the puck was surprising. I think Les Habs may have been gassed from their CBJ shootout win the night before, and couldn’t keep up. Price was spectacular and kept them in the game. We dominated in every department and deserved the win.

  6. Gee, give Gnash a chance before you start knocking him!;>(( For one, I’m looking forward to his return. Also appreciate how this has been a speedy team effort in his absence. Agree 100% with you, Carp, on Hagelin…

  7. This team is faster because we have some good young players who have speed as a weapon. Carl Hagelin, the Kreider and Miller all have speed. Even the off season signings, Moore and Pouliot have speed. I think the team looks a lot better without Pyatt.

  8. Anyone think we still need to fill this lineup up with a bunch of big slow grinders? For a 1-0 game, it was really very exciting to watch.

    Dorsett almost = Prust. Same kind of player, Really good defensively, good on the PK. Joe said it last night, once he stopped taking dumb penalties, he’s become VERY effective. I remember Columbus people saying how we were gonna love the guy. I’m really starting to.

    Once Kreider starts scoring he’s going to be impossible to stop. He’s made for this more aggressive style. As are Hagelin, and Zuc, and..and..

  9. Agree with Carp – Hagelin is the most important forward the Rangers have. Arguably even more important to the team’s play overall than Richie Rich, Cally, or Nash.

    His speed, tenacity, awareness, and skill in all 3 zones tilt the entire hockey rink in the Rangers’ favour.

    His impact on the team was felt immediately upon his return to the lineup.

  10. Nash is the only consistent 30 goal threat in this team, so yeah, I want him back. Then, maybe they won’t have to try to win too many 1-0 games.

  11. Steveknj —

    Actually noticed Dorsett as much as Pruster last night. Dorsett was a nice pickup by Sather.

  12. Cross Check Charlie on

    Good write up as always. I disagree about Kreider. He’s on pace to score 13 goals over an 82 game season. I wouldn’t call that the “whole package.” The rest of his game has improved immensely, but if he’s going to be on the top line he’s got to convert on some of those scoring chances.

  13. Carp…..excellent..excellent review….as they say onThe Soup…”so meaty” (blame my wife for watching bedroom TV at all hours of the night). My imagination or does Slewfoot motion the Refs with his glove every time he absorbs a check??? And what is with his roadrunner starts when he picks up speed?

  14. Now that Dorsett is not going into the penalty box as often as he was I can agree he is playing very well. I also like the speed and uptempo of the game.

    LGR!

  15. Almost forgot..great game by our boys…starting to love AV….my son up in Beantown taped the game on the NHL network as he was out.. and warned me not to text him with updates,….so I texted his girlfriend and told her to bet him they would hold the one nothing lead….which I was sure would become interesting as the game wore on and the tension built with every save…but alas she didnt have the heart to use it to her advanfage…give her time…she will learn. LGR!

  16. Almost forgot….Dorsett diving to deflect what was a wide open shot from in close…wow…andd Talbot pitching his first shutout in Montreal…beyond impressive…and a TOTAL team effort.

  17. Rob in Beantown on

    Good review Carp. But one of my biggest peeves in sports is when two teams wear solid colors against each other. My eyes don’t like it!

  18. Agree completely on the Kreider assessment. He never looked like this even in his playoff coming out party. He’s a bull in a china shop now when pursuing the puck into the offensive zone and makes sure the opposing D knows he’s on the ice even after they move the puck away by finishing his check.

    Maybe Torts knew that this is how he could play and rightly or wrongly challenged him to play this way and never got the right response. Maybe AV has given him the right linemates and deployed him in the right situations. Maybe the game started clicking for him after a so so training camp, maybe it’s a bit of all of that.

  19. Some good late night Stralman debate in the previous post. Two heavyweights throwing haymakers in there. I will keep my Strawman (new name for him?) opinions to that post.

    Extra GREAT review, Carp. Really great.

  20. Nash is a scorer. And a pretty good two way player as well. If anything the game “slows” down because Nash can possess the puck and keep control of it in the offensive zone for longer spells. But he’s a very above average skater and he’s the “finisher” everyone is always begging for. Sheesh.

  21. HA! Suddenly they have skill to play? Under Torts, all these years they didn’t, eh? YWAN!

    And no Manny… i am not taking shots at the former “hall of fame” coach… just pointing out the obvious… SYSTEM!

  22. Great game. Cam Talbot is impressive and very composed for a rookie. He could be the biggest surprise for NYR this season.

    Hard to believe that Markus Naslund was the last Ranger to score a PP goal in Montreal. Wow!

    Carp, I also wasn’t sure that the Rangers had the skill to play AV’s system. But now, I think it’s clear that they can defend and also use speed and skill to generate offense.

    Guys like Kreider, Zuccarello, Hagelin, and Stepan will thrive in this system. (They are certainly all are now)

    How about Zucc leading all NYR forwards in ice time?

    IMO,when Nash comes back, they shouldn’t break up the lines too much…

    Hagelin-Richards-Nash
    Kreider-Stepan-Zuccarello
    Miller-Boyle-Callahan
    Dorsett-Brassard-Moore

    PK Slewfoot was in vintage form, pulling his normal routine last night. How is it that the refs always miss him trying to kick someones legs out?

  23. Good morning, boneheads!

    Watched on DVR, as I do most of the games this season. Bedtime routine is a priority at the moment.
    I call it a complete game. If it wasn’t for Price, it wouldn’t be close at all. Speed is what used to give Rangers problems when they played Montreal. They now have an advantage in this department. And while it’s obvious that Hagelin, Kreider, Miller, MZA etc. are able to skate fast, I think it’s more than that. Even less than swift skaters on the team somehow arrive to the puck faster than they opponents. I think it’s positioning, thinking process and smart puck support. I’m starting to like AV’s coaching. I think he has this team buy into his system, they are starting to gel. They need more physical players ( Falk made their defense look different last night), maybe one more upfront, and one more on the backline.

  24. Kreider is a beast. He’s never looked this good at any level of hockey he’s played. Never asserted himself like this. It’s awesome.

  25. Is there actually a “chef” at any of the Macaroni Grill locations? I mean, they advertise a
    Four course Chef’s tasting menu, so…

  26. Bull dog, I understand your concern. But Nash is not a slow skater by any stretch of the imagination. I think he is going to have to adjust to this system more than anyone else and stop hugging the puck. He is a finisher with a laser of a shot, he can deke in close if need to. AV will have to make sure he leaves his Columbus mentality behind and plays to team’s strength. If he does, watch out.

  27. Carp, how does this sound:

    ” Cam Talbot, dragon slayer ”

    Sorry just trying it on to see if it fit
    : D

  28. Carp

    I remember “Heidi Sunday” well. Left for the Garden and the NYR game (don’t remember who they were hosting) with my father when the Jets had that game well in hand ….. and then found out when I got there that they had lost. And then found out later that NBC had left the broadcast about the same time I did.

  29. I suspect not, but Macaroni Grill does have those awesome tables you can crayon on … do that makes up for it.

  30. What’s amazing is the Rangers have been playing very well lately despite two major issues:

    1) Nash has been out pretty much all season
    2) Henrik has not been playing the way we’re used to.

    If Nash comes back and is playing like an all-star and Hank is stealing games you can make a serious case that the Rangers are the best team in the East.

  31. Carp, good review. MZA will get back, no doubt. I liked Falk yesterday a lot. But the bottom line is- they need a R hander to pay this position. If McIlrath isn’t ready, then make a trade and get one. Teams will take advantage of that, we were lucky last night Hagelin and Co. was able to come back and defend.

  32. Just imagine the Rangers get the puck and drive the zone with Nash hanging out on the LW, in space, ready to rip shots. Yum.

  33. I like Falk as well, ilb. Our Defense could really use a big guy like that. Stay at home. He was even getting shots last night. Really impressive
    Coming off the bench and being ready to go. I would like to keep him in.

  34. Bryan Boyle was outstanding last night. I think he is settling in his NHL position, and doing it very well. He won’t be a goal scorer, but a solid checking center who can be physical at times, and will win important faceoffs. He is an UFA next year, his cap hit is $1.7M. He is only 28, I believe they need to resign him and let D. Moore walk. Moore will still find plenty of teams lining up for his services.

  35. Matty"NashWillBeBack"Boy on

    Ilb, vibin’ on that. Right hander just needed.

    No where near what Edmondton has done, what with similar players all over the place and no balance, but this one spot on the roster is a need.

  36. ilb,
    if AV can get Nash to buy in, look out! this team will very difficult to beat. I have to see it first though. not convinced Nash will buy in, and we are going to see a lot of Nash spin o rama to nowhere.

  37. Matty"NashWillBeBack"Boy on

    Carp, you had said, “wait till they’re 20 games in to see what this team is all about”. Last night=Game 19. Pretty good.

    Still, need retribution for the losses to the excellent west teams and the Derbils. Perhaps tonight? As well, let’s not forget we haven’t seen Boston yet.

  38. Let’s not underestimate Nash’s speed for this system. If you recall, his game against LA, was extremely high tempo and aggressive. He will fit this teams speed well.

  39. Matty"NashWillBeBack"Boy on

    ILB, agreed. Boyle is an integral part of this team. Ha, ha, ha, “If I were the GM..” Ha, ha ha…….I’d be talking to his agent already.

    The scare will be when he is allowed by moron to test the FA market instead of signing him quietly and before he expires.

  40. also I am not convinced MDZ will be back. this system was supposed to be perfect for him. every Dman struggled at the beginning of the season. only MDZ is still struggling. vision, and skating are his problems.

  41. Matty"NashWillBeBack"Boy on

    Nice writeup, Carpola.

    I look forward to the game tonight. Decided to go to it. Hope the Sunday night crowd is up for a good team and supports the cause.

    Hate to say it, but I’d be fine, although it won’t happen, to see Prince Cam in the nets. Let’s see what this kids got.

  42. eddie eddie eddie on

    One thing is for sure. AV’s team is plenty more exciting to watch than the wall ball that torts insisted on. Basically the same group of players. A BETTER SYSTEM for sure.

  43. “He won’t be a goal scorer, but a solid checking center who can be physical at times, and will win important faceoffs.”

    That’s really my only issue with Boyle – physical at times. Dude should be knocking down opponents more often than The Kreider does but he still plays like a tissue.

  44. eddie eddie eddie on

    bulldog – add “peabrain” to the list of MDZ’s shortcomings…..I sense he isnt terribly sharp in the noodle

  45. listen, everyone has had to adjust to and buy into this new system and Nash isn’t going to be/shouldn’t be an exception. Yes he’s used to having to carry the puck in and he’s had “selfish” tendencies or the tendency to hang at the line waiting for a break but he’s the biggest goal scoring threat on this team. Wi things get a little disrupted when he comes back? Yeah, probably. But everyone including him will need
    To adjust. That’s what successful teams do. They adjust and keep going.

    If you want to talk concerns- I still don’t think they’re big enough. They last couple of years they’ve been capable of winning the skill and speed oriented games but these days you need a team that can walk the line between skill and physicality. Do they need slow grinders? No. But I’m looking forward to the game w the Bruins because that type of team is ultimately what they’ll need to be able to handle in order to be capable of playoff success.

  46. Mornin’ Boneheads and Sally! Couldn’t be happier with Talbot’s performances. We should never draft a goalie again.

  47. Complete package last night. Everyone including pouliot and miller protecting a lead late were involved. One thing about AV is he likes to roll 4 lines torts never would use his whole bench in a game like last night leading and protecting for a long time.

    3 games in 4 days for kings. Take advantage. For ONCE I’m HAPPY.

  48. _He’s never looked this good at any level of hockey he’s played. Never asserted himself like this._

    How could he ever play like this before if for every mistake he would find himself benched or sent to Hartford? AV is letting him play and it shows…

  49. AV is a better in game coach than Torts was. he sees the hot hand and rides it. he gets more out of his 3rd and 4th lines by the way he uses them.

  50. eddie eddie eddie on

    eric – absolutely correct re:rolling 4 lines….Torts wouldn’t roll 3, much less 4, in a game like that…..VERY Happy AV is our coach..

  51. James, the only one that needs to adjust is Nash. the rest of them have done it already. Zucc needs to stay on the 1st power play, and on his line. he has earned it.

  52. eddie eddie eddie on

    Talbot moves the puck like eddie eddie eddie used to…..That young man is a diamond in the rough…

  53. eddie eddie eddie on

    THE DUDE – when Duguay would jet down the wing with his hair blowing in the breeze……it was ooo la la…..

  54. e3,
    yeah there was one play when Talbot came out and played the puck, that if Hank were in net there would have been a series of shots on goal against. Hanks lack of hockey instinct would not have allowed him to make that play.

  55. eddie eddie eddie on

    bulldog – yes, he looked very “eddie-ish” on that play…he came way way out and played the puck if it’s the same play we are thinking of…

  56. e3,
    I recently compared MDZ to Marc Sanchez. one of the reasons was that neither one of them seem all that bright.

  57. if Boyle would take that, so would I. I am afraid he would get more than that on the open market though. he may end up being to pricey for the role he plays.

  58. You think? I can see Boyle getting some low ball offers but, with a guy like Konopka making $900K, I can’t see Boyle getting more than twice that and only because of his size.

    Ugh this is going to be just like The Prust where I would, in theory, give up anything to keep him, but in reality 4 years was just too much.

    You guys see Fatso diving and deflecting the puck into his own net last night?

  59. eddie eddie eddie on

    boyle made some great “little” plays last night – excellent defensive forward,,,,if he played that way every game…he’s a selke candidate

  60. also notice how Boyle’s value seems to be going up, while his ice time is going down? used properly he is a very valuable player.

  61. eddie eddie eddie on

    manny – pyatt is useless…..they won that game without pyatt using speed to clear the puck and carry it deep….JUST SAY NO TO PYATT

  62. Boyle, when played in his proper position is an IDEAL 4th line Center with possible 3rd line LW potential. I can’t see someone paying $3M for that but then again, a team with Cap Space decides it wants a huge body and veteran leadership….it’s possible.

  63. eddie eddie eddie on

    Manny – the problem: pyatt’s one dimension is in a parallel universe which is actually perpendicular (orthonormal) to the one we live in.

  64. I’m not totally disagreeing with you, Bull Dog. I can really see that happening. I would be really, really sad, but I don’t know that I can give $3M to Boyle.

  65. Rob in Beantown on

    Boyle won 75% of his face offs last night too. He’s one of the best in the league this season at face off wins.

  66. Rob in Beantown on

    $3M sadly is probably too much for Boyle, and all it takes is one GM to offer it to him. On the plus side he is pretty resilient. I can’t remember him being hurt besides the concussion in the playoffs. Prust on the other hand was always getting hurt

  67. You’re right about that, Rob. Boyle is a pretty tough customer when it comes to playing hurt. And he has a lot of drive. I really, really love that guy and would be VERY sad to see him leave.

    How much is Dubinsky worth and then how much is Boyle worth?

  68. “Boyle is a pretty tough customer”

    Duguay is pretty, and if Boyle were tough, he’d throw some hits now and then.

  69. Good morning, Sally! (crack of noon?)

    I don’t see any reason why Nash woudn’t fit perfectly or buy into AV’s system. This should be right in his wheelhouse.

    and he’s still an amazing skater for his size.

  70. Kenneth at clinchers of '89Flames '94Rangers '96Avs on

    I love what Boyle brings to the team, but given the choice of Boyle at near two million or a comparable replacement at less than a million, the Rangers ought to let Boyle walk. They have to sacrifice salary somewhere to help their need up front. Better to sacrifice a fourth liner than say, a top pair d-man Girardi.

  71. There is no replacement for Boyle. This is the same issue we have with Dubinsky and The Prust. They are made up of the stuff.

  72. Kenneth at clinchers of '89Flames '94Rangers '96Avs on

    If Talbot continues to succeed, he gives the Rangers a valuable asset in the offseason to move in the right trade.

  73. I don’t think Boyle will demand or be offered $3M. And if it happens, I’d let him walk. He also knows he is fit for this system, and you can get him under contract by giving him stability. I’d offer him long term 4-5 years at just over $2M per.

  74. Kenneth at clinchers of '89Flames '94Rangers '96Avs on

    How many fourth line free agents do teams sign for 4-5 years? I would stay away from committing 4-5 years.

  75. ilb,
    all it takes is one GM.
    Manny,
    that is what everybody here was saying about Betts. Boyle replaced him. easily I might add.

  76. I suggested it last night.

    Hank for Eberle, straight up.

    As long as it’s not The Kreider going the other way, I’m good.

  77. Boyle is the size of Chara. There are very few players that size in the NHL. Don’t care how soft he plays. He’s huge. He’s not replaceable.

  78. ilb,
    I would offer yrs. like Manny suggested. not dollars. 4yrs, 2mill per. once it hit 2.5 I let him walk. you can’t overpay for 3rd line/ 4th line player.

  79. Kenneth at clinchers of '89Flames '94Rangers '96Avs on

    ilb2001, NJ may have fourth line stability, but the rest of their team stinks of horse manure. Boston has had fourth line stability over the past few years, but the rest of their roster has been championship quality. Fourth line stability only matters if the rest of the roster is championship quality, otherwise the fourth line money can be put to better use.

  80. Rob in Beantown on

    Talbot: 4-1, 1.58 GAA, .943 SV%, 1 SHO
    Lundqvist: 6-7, 2.51 GAA, .915 SV%, 2 SHO

    I really want to see more of Talbot. Is it possible he is really this good? He is doing Hank’s agent *NO FAVORS* at all

  81. I’m kinda happy that the Gerbils are doing well with Brodeur and Jagr leading the way. Maybe it will lure the Armadillo into a false sense of security thinking his team is good..

  82. Haha. *NO* Favors. It’s true. But I would rather have our goalies win the Jennings as a tandem than one of them win the Vezina. Being able to rest Hank is awesome.

  83. LMA0 – My, my, how things radically change with a 1-0 win in Montreal. Suddenly, and I mean suddenly, everyone loves Boyler and wonders if Nash can successfully crack this lineup. It is to guffaw.

  84. Kenneth at clinchers of '89Flames '94Rangers '96Avs on

    Talbot’s twenty of so games should not impact Hank’s next contract.

  85. Miami, my wife was shopping with my little one in the city yesterday. Came back with a big pile of clothes and one toy. Mrs said the girl picked it herself. It’s a foot tall Cookie Monster. I thought you’d like to hear this.

  86. Don’t fly, mister blue bird, I’m just walking down the road,
    Early morning sunshine tell me all I need to know”

    It’s Stralman Sunday!

  87. Blackbird singing in the dead of night
    Take these broken wings and learn to fly
    All your life
    You were only waiting for this moment to arrive…

  88. ILB2001,

    YESSSSSSSSSS!!!!! that makes my day.

    if you can find a way to upload a pic (maybe tinypic.com), I’ll put it up on thatscookiemonster.com

  89. I don’t think it’s one game, coos. It’s a common trend during last 11 games. Yesterday was a culmination, considering were they played. This team is developing it’s identity. I think Nash will fit just fine. May take a couple of games.

  90. Kenneth at clinchers of '89Flames '94Rangers '96Avs on

    ilb2001, definitely developing an identity. When Nash comes back, Vigneault shouldn’t shake up the lines much.

  91. Nash should play with Brassard and Boyle until he hits his stride. trying to force him on one of the top 2 lines would be a mistake. if he plays well, he will force his way there. if he plays well this team is going to be scary good.

  92. Manny @ 11:19….you cant be serious.

    You want Pyatt to protect a 1 goal lead late? He might be the last guy ( a tie among Richards, DelZotto & Pyatt) I would put on the ice to protect a 1 goal lead late in the game.

    He’s minus 8 on the season, slow as molasses on his skates and has the turning radius of an aircraft carrier. How does that translate into he is responsible defensively?

    I agree with E3, Pyatt is useless.

  93. I disagree with your assessment that Hagelin has been our best player. While he has been terrific his weak back check on the Devil’s second goal left me scratching my head. Personally I think Kreider has been our best player. He beats his man to every loose puck or flatout outmuscles him! The open ice hit on Emelin was a monster! I love watching him play.

  94. I agree with you, Bull Dog! Start him off slow. Maybe Brass playing with Nash might get him going.

    Didn’t get to comment last night, but I must say, as good as Subban is, he’s really a hard guy to like. He’s getting in that Crosby territory. I don’t wish injuries in these guys, but if they get hurt, I wont shed a tear. Little cheap shot artists that continuously get away with it.

    I mean, on one shift he slewfoot’s Kreider, gets away with it, then he, unless I’m mistaken, pulls an “OvechCANT” and pretends he took a stick to the face. Looked to me like it never made contact.

    I guess we’ll be seeing a lot of that from Team Canada.

  95. to acknowledge Kreider as the Rangers best player lately, would be acknowledging how wrong people were about him at the start of the season. even last season for that matter. so acknowledging Kreider as there best player will not happen.

  96. The Kreider, Hagelin and Callahan add so much skill and quickness to this line-up. They can get to and posses loose pucks.

    If ThenKreider and Zucc played with a quicker pivot, I think they would score more.

    When Nash comes back, I’d try Brassard with The Kreider and Zucc, move Stepan with Nash. Keep Richards, Hagelin and Cally together.

  97. eddie eddie eddie on

    papa – werd up, yo

    Trade Hank for Malkin and that devilishly handsome Kunitz who, by the way, is NOT pretty.

  98. Kenneth at clinchers of '89Flames '94Rangers '96Avs on

    Kreider has definitely been their best player. Twitter users are insistent upon picking on every defensive miscue by Kreider, as if he’s supposed to perfect through every game.

  99. And if that doesn’t work, double shift Stralsie and put him between The Kreider and Zucc!

    Shirley, I can’t be serious. ;)

  100. I don’t care about +\- at all. Not interested.

    I think Pyatt is a good defensive player who is pretty good along the half wall.

    That’s just my opinion. I don’t love him or anything and I would replace him very easily. Just saying, he’s a responsible player in that regard.

  101. papa bear, agree on those lines. Brassard is a play maker and would help kreider and zucc score goals and step works well with Nash.

  102. Kenneth, good point.

    The Kreider’s “mistakes” are sited often, usually overblown and are committed pretty much by everyone across the line-up.

    What we hardly hear about are the good defensive plays the Kid makes in all 3 zones by utilizing his speed, size and power.

    Against the Devils, in the last 2 periods alone, he made at least four awesome defensive zone plays to get the Rangers out of trouble.

  103. when THE Kreider learns how to score he will be the power forward I’ve been waiting for as a ranger fan for a very long time.

  104. Whether you care about +\- or not, Pyatt’s been a major bust in NY.

    It would be silly to put him on the ice late to protect a 1 goal lead.

  105. Wicky©No one screens the goalie, no one gets to rebounds!!! on

    Carp
    great review as always!

    ILB
    couldn’t agree more on your 10:12

    Papa
    thanks for the good norris debate late last night

  106. Carp what’s your take on the Neil Smith situation in Buffalo. He did a great job with the Isles but Stupid Wang would’nt give him. complete control. Why is he beinge blackballed

  107. Orr, good point. But I wouldn’t have either on the ice late in a 1 goal game.

    Like to see Pullout pull out of town.

  108. You guys that dislike Pyatt and the other role players, seem to ignore the playoffs and how a team needs to play to be successful in the playoffs. When games get right those guys shine. I seem to remember Pyatt scoring in the playoffs. Boyle too.

    With all due respect buddies.

  109. Unless a head coach is a screwball troglodyte or a disjointed ideologue, he knows whom to play and when. When you see Pyatt, D Moops, Stralman, or anyone else, there is good reason.

  110. Who here would take Greg Campbell as a fourth line center over Boyle? I think he can be considered a “stable” fourth line center guy. Meanwhile he’s about a foot shorter and 50lbs less than Boyle…yet making a couple under k less in salary.

  111. On the other hand, he can only choose from players on his bench, players the GM has provided him.

  112. eddie eddie eddie on

    manny – pyatt is softer than a pillow given his size, slower than frozen molasses, and has hands so hard that they are immune to plastic deformation….

  113. oh and the Greg Campbell thing was just for the sake of debate. I’ve never had an opinion on Boyle either way

  114. I would take Campbell. Good thinking, James. I might take Hendricks too.

    Boyle might have more upside (third line ability) than those guys though. I just want Boyle to be forced to play 4th line because the team is so good elsewhere.

  115. eddie eddie eddie on

    manny – you remember pyatt scoring in the playoffs? I remember jean ratelle scoring in the playoffs too but it doesnt mean we should suit him up.

  116. Cambell is the type of player to add to make the rangers less soft. That’s what I’m talking about when I say the rangers are soft. Also need it on there blueline.

  117. I understand Eddie. I’m not a huge fan if Pyatt. I just think he is pretty darn good at one thing.

  118. eddie eddie eddie on

    manny – i hear ya…..i just think he’s useless…and there are better options…..and certainly Miller should play over him

  119. Manny,

    I like Pyatt as a role player. But I believe his role is better suited for another team or maybe Hartford.

    And , I don’t complain about Boyle. I’ve complimented his game this year.

  120. A Boyle v Campbell debate is a good example of that line between a big players vs tough players. takes a tricky combo when trying to put together a contending team.

  121. Yea I wasn’t saying you did Papa!

    Miller might have more offensive spark but he has been a bit lost defensively. Pyatt is what he is and it’s solid. But whatever, if we’re arguing about Pyatt we are in good shape.

  122. eddie eddie eddie on

    manny – Re: Pyatt, I agree he is solid….solid as a mountain…..which is the problem as a mountain doesn’t move all that quickly in real time….

  123. Wicky©No one screens the goalie, no one gets to rebounds!!! on

    I had to make some deals on NHL14 and FWIW, boyle wears an “A”.

  124. Tonight should be interesting. The knock on Scribbles in Toronto was that he left huge, juicy rebounds. Somebody better be there to knock ’em home.

  125. I heard Kreider use a big, incisive word in a recent interview. This kid is growing by leaps and bounds. Maye he’s smarter than some of us (including me) have given him credit for. Also returned nasty to nasty with Subban.

  126. Probably because Subban’s younger brother fought Scott Stajcer and Stakcer and The Kreider know each other. He was sticking up for his AHL brethren.

  127. ‘I took a walk one day with Blanche
    Along the avenue of love and romance
    And I decided that I’d take chance
    Just to see… how happy life would be (Life would be)
    Only Blanche and me…’

    Anyone ever named Blanche anymore since 1855??

  128. @AmyJacobson: Was just told by Soldier Field employee that concessions were stopped because TOO MUCH beer was being sold.

    ******************************

    That’s regarding the Bears/Ravens game which is currently suspended due to I climate weather.

  129. If they suspend the game, they can’t suspend beer sales too. What are the fans supposed to do now?

  130. I wonder if the Weather is effecting Sioux and the Women’s curling trials in North Dakota. It’s really awful.

  131. Much better, Gravy! And the Rangers have to make the Stanley Cup Final for AV > Tort.

    Also, Tort did it with way less talent and that clown destroying the team from within.

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  133. Oh myy goodness! Awesome article dude! Thank you, However
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