Game 4: Rangers-Flyers in review



1) As I said, I expected it to be 1-1 after two games. I expected it to be 2-2 after four. Why? Because most closely-matched series are, and because I didn’t think either of these teams would dominate the other. But the Rangers, in recent history, have sure gone down this path before, and I can only imagine what it’s like for you guys who live and die with them. Because the Rangers have, for the most part since 2011-12, won most of the games they have absolutely needed to win, and lost most of the games they could afford to lose.  When up a game in a series, they have lost the next game nine times in a row. In that span, they have been 2-2 after four games four times, and they are 1-3 in Game 5s. But they did go on to win three of those series in seven games.

2) So there’s that. There’s also this. What is it about this team, this core group of players, that can’t play desperate in games that the opponent needs more?

3) That asked,  I thought the Rangers were really good through 20 minutes, playing fast, dictating tempo, getting chances. Then I thought they dipped. I thought, in the third, they were just stubbornly refusing to play chip-and-chase against a Flyers team that was, in textbook fashion, clogging the neutral zone. I also thought that when Alain Vigneault started his Torts-esque line juggling, it took the fourth line out of the rotation, and by doing that it robbed the Rangers of zone-time shifts. I think the Flyers probably didn’t mind seeing those guys seated.

4) And then, all of a sudden in the last couple of minutes — of course, aided by having Henrik Lundqvist pulled, the Rangers finally showed some desperation. So to review. Maybe 20 desperate minutes early, 38 very lukewarm — not terrible, but not good enough — minutes, then two strong minutes. Yeah, that’s not close to enough ever, but especially in a playoff game against a team that really needed to win in front of a loud arena. Which brings us to the …

5) Daily Nash-O-Meter. Rick Nash, who I thought was fine in Games 1-3, took another head shot — I’ve lost count. He made some good defensive plays early. (Brad Richards too). Then Nash got caught gliding back on the Matt Read goal. Serious gliding on a tying goal he could have prevented. He showed some onions in a few early battles in front. Was good on the PK again. He was not out on the 4-on-3. He didn’t score, again, which means one goal in 16 playoff games as a Ranger. And we were talking about this before MSG Network discussed it — in the final moments, with complete desperation, he was fabulous. You wonder why he can’t have more shifts like that in every single game. Why it’s just not there. Why it happens so rarely. One for 16, geez.

6) And let’s be honest here. Steve Mason was damn good, especially in the first. His stick skills thwarted the Rangers forecheck. He made a great save on Ryan McDonagh. Not saying he was the reason the Rangers lost but he was a reason the Flyers won. Got to make that point because of, you know, the history of Flyers goalies since 1975.

7) Henrik Lundqvist, meanwhile, probably wanted the Read goal back only because of where it appeared to beat him, between the arm and body. He had no shot at the Jakub Voracek PP redirection under the crossbar. Didn’t face as many shots as Mason, but was just as good. We’ve seen him better.

8) Dan Girardi=BlockNess Monster. Big, huge game for the D-man.

9) His partner, not so much. Maybe it’s because he’s raised the bar so high this year, and probably it’s because of the shoulder injury just before the playoffs, but Ryan McDonagh isn’t himself. Wasn’t terrible. Just a tad off. How about him nearly snapping his wrist in the photographer’s opening in the glass? Then it was his man, Raffl, who nearly made it 3-1, but was bailed out by Lundqvist. He did some nice things offensively, not much on the power play.

10) Speaking of which, the power play, which was great in Game 1, I thought very good in Game 2, has now dropped back to Mike Sullivan proportions. Playing three men above the circles, nobody moving, not getting shots or redirects or rebounds or screens. The 4-on-3, most of which was played on a new sheet of ice after 18 minutes to draw up something, was a disgrace. I thought it was the turning point in the game.

11) The Rangers’ first line, which shouldn’t be the first line — Mats Zuccarello, Derick Brassard, Benoit Pouliot — which carried the Rangers for so much of the season, makes some noise and Zuccarello and Pouliot have done some disturbing before and after whistles. But those three guys aren’t getting much done at all. Had some chances, though.

12) The Rangers’ aggressiveness is what makes their PK so effective … and sometimes it backfires. Zuccarello and Marc Staal with chances to clear on the PPG by Voracek, and Staal way out of position. Uncontested deflection on a nice passing play by Philly for the game-winner.

13) So, in a series in which the refs made a big show of calling embellishment penalties, we go to a new game on a new night and, as in every game in this series, there’s an entirely new rulebook. Zac Rinaldo took a ridiculous dive right out of the hopper and the refs bought it. Then the hockey Gods smote him as the victim of the call, Dominic Moore, scored on the wrap-around out of the penalty box. Come to think of it, that’s the Rangers’ best play, the one on which they’ve scored their last two goals in this series: The jack-in-the-box … guy jumps out of the box and scores. Anything good that happens to/for Dominic Moore should make you happy, whether you root for the Rangers or have no rooting interest at all.

14) Just sayin’ … Marian Gaborik threee playoff goals. Nash, Brassard, John Moore, Derek Dorsett 0.

15) Not to be Captain Obvious, but Game 5 is gonna be fairly huge.

My Three Rangers Stars:
1. Dan Girardi.
2. Dominic Moore.
3. Henrik Lundqvist.
Kenny Albert’s Three Rangers Stars:
1. Dan Girardi.
2. Dominic Moore.
3. Henrik Lundqvist.
Josh Thomson, 26’s Three Rangers Stars:
1. Dan Girardi.
2. Dominic Moore.
3. Brad Richards.
David Rosengarten’s Three Rangers Stars:
1. Dominic Moore.
2. Martin St. Louis.
3. Dan Girardi.
Your poll vote for Three Rangers Stars:
1. Mats Zuccarello.
2. Henrik Lundqvist.
3. Dominic Moore.

Photos by Getty Images.

Twitter: @rangersreport.



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  1. Spot on thoughts. Observed this game with foreboding dread. With 20 minutes to go you hope they could produce a goal or some late magic to even it up but no. Like watching an M. Night Shyamalan movie, you think it is going to get better and that it will all be worth it but no.

  2. What can you expect for $63,000,000.00?

    2 out of the next three are at MSG, yay!

    It wasn’t that bad. but I expected we could score one more goal…. the power play suck and if I see Richards on this team next year I am gonna be sick.

    Nash wasn’t any better under Torts. I think I give up on him too.

    HL gave a weak goal too.

    they have to pick it up a notch…… hope they do.

  3. Before the 4 on 3 powerplay to open the third, their last 5 on 4 pp the Rangers had in the second sealed their fate. I think (if I counted correctly) they missed 4 shots wide on that pp which I think is why they hesitated to shoot as much on the 4 on 3. They were trying to pick their corners/shots…bad move.

  4. gregm_oldsection403 on

    I actually fell asleep for about 5 minutes during the beginning of the 3rd period last night. DURING A PLAYOFF GAME! Snoozefest for a while there.

  5. Good morning, boneheads!

    Great observations, Carp! Different coach, same trend. It almost feels like they want to make it harder on themselves. And the fans. It would be very disappointing if they end up losing this series because they’ve shown they are the better team.

    By the way, that goal by Matt Read was a set play, except Nash could’ve prevented the goal. Lazy play by him.

    I was supposed to go to MSG tomorrow. Not so fast, I have to cover for my co-worker who has an emergency. Working both days. My son is going to represent ilbs tomorrow. Oh, well…

  6. CraigWeather on

    I said it last night and I’ll say it again… If Rick Nash wants to continue to glide thru this series, there likely won’t be a “next” series for us. Had he not turned it on in the waning minutes, I wouldn’t be this infuriated. I just don’t understand. I’d love to say he hasn’t been the same since the concussions, but just look at the dominating performance against his former team! Our best players need to be our best players and that ESPECIALLY holds true when your top defenseman is clearly still hurting with a shoulder injury. Add to the fact that we don’t have a game-breaker in Kreider in the lineup and it’s easy to see why this series will likely go to 7… SO frustrated…

  7. I wrote the other day about Nash being bad and some reaction is, he’s better than last yr or he got 2 assists geez. He won’t engage on any tough spot, if he went where our 2 smallest guys go MSL and Zuc and wasn’t scoring I would give him a break. Not only the Rangers will never win a Cup with Nash I really believe no team would win with this guy. The amount of money and ice time he gets it becomes so detrimental to a team. Move him for a couple of picks, buy out Richards and start again. We will beat Philly only because the D is that bad and Mason will fail. The truth be told one round that we are spending too much resources on and then we are done

  8. Carp – your reviews are usually spot-on, but you missed a bunch on this one, IMO:

    1. Rangers effort? The last 2 periods (except the last one minute) was an absolute snooze-fest! On both sides. THis is a play-off game? Rangers showed no real effort, no urgency. I’ve watched most of the playoff games throughout the league, and this was by far the worst.

    2. Nash. This guy is a PUSS$%@*&! Go look about mid-way through the 3rd – St. Louis makes a beautiful pass from behind the net between a defenseman’s skates, and Nash winds up getting the rebound and gives you absolutely the most pitiful effort in trying to bang it in. He actually pulls off, instead of giving the extra to put it in. Actually with the exception of last minute, (which actually makes me even more mad) most of the time he actually gets the shot and then pulls off instead of following it up. And that leads to:

    3. Mason. Was it the game plan of the Rangers NOT to crash the net/harass Mason? Not getting this one at all. Everything was from the outside, and not enough 2nd chances. This as well as the failure of the PP is why they lost.

    4. Pouliot may have been the only guy to get in his grill. Not understanding why Mason doesn’t get called for doing his best Mike Tyson on Pouliot??????

    5. Powerplay to begin the 3rd…flashbacks of Tortorella where guys were standing around like statues?? WTF?

    6. Did I say this was a pretty boring/lackluster game by the Rangers for most of the game??

  9. Agree the DJ Moops had good games…John, in particular, skated well last night. Looked like the Rangers’ mid-season form, with decent effort by lines 2-4, lots of shots (few from the tough areas of the ice by their top-paid players) and defensive lapses that cost the game. Along with others, wonder what motivates Gnasher. A gnasher without teeth does not bode well for evolutionary improvement in the Ranger species.

  10. And one of my customer service reps is being taken to Sunday’s game by his brother as a birthday treat…guess the boss does not rate an invite…c’est la vie AV.

  11. Flyers seemed to tighten up a bit player the way they wanted to and exposed the limited skill and finishers on this team. Mason did what I was hoping he wouldn’t and was the #1 star. Could very
    Easily be Flyers in 6 from here.

    Ps- if Nash could play 20 minutes a night the way he played the final shift of the game he would actually be worth the money we pay him.

  12. You can’t win tight playoff games with a pp as a anemic as that. It was an utter disgrace watching the 4 on 3 pass around the perimeter.

    Did anyone expect anything different then 2-2 after 4.

    I will say this win game 5 otherwise I don’t see a repeat of Ottawa winning game 6 on road and then game 7.

  13. The Rangers don’t seem able to deal with heavy forecheck pressure in their own zone. They stop skating and start gliding and stick-checking. When they do get possesion, they don’t seem to know what to do. So they stop skating and look for someone, anyone, to dump the puck to. Far too often, it’s the other team. How many times do you see them curl around back to their own goal instead of turming it up ice and ATTACKING when they get possesion? That’s not smart hockey – it’s choke hockey, and they better stop it, or it will be a longer summer than it should be.

  14. Lobster…Nash does fall down a lot….lol

    To me it seemed like the Rangers were trying to keep Philly from scoring more than they cared about creating offense. This was quite the snoozefest!

  15. I’ll also say this (and I did not watch the game due to bachelor party in Key West):

    Who even cares what happens to these mercenaries going forward? This BS will go seven games and tire them out and either team will be too exhausted to do anything fruitful in the next round.

    The writing’s on the wall.

  16. Rule book question:
    What do you do when you’re at your kid’s lacrosse tournament and realize you need to drop a deuce? Add to the full portopottybor climb thru school window, leave a muddy trail to the john? Shanahan’s replacement – ruling please….FAST

  17. Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right. Here I am, stuck on the ledge with youse.

  18. Stranger Nation on

    FG – get in your call and drive to the nearest Starbucks or McDs. Been in the position before, u don’t want to go port-o-john…

  19. Stranger Nation on

    Carpe – best review all year. Cannot believe that was a playoff game. How flippin boring.

    Flyers cannot score unless the refs give them some undeserved penalty.

    Mason did play good, but no real pressure in front or in the slot for that matter. We have a golden opp with the JV goalie and could seal the deal in Game 2.

    38 shots and 5 scoring chances. Can we stop with the odd angle wristers that generate nothing when a competent goalie is in.

    Girardi was an absolute beast last night. His hit on Simmonds was my personal game highlight. Lit him up behind the goal in the first and we didn’t hear much from tough guy Wayne after that.

    Nash – just doesn’t have the compete level. Last seen on line at the Wizards’ castle waiting in line for some courage.

    Agree sitting 4th line to ‘generate more O’ was a big mistake. Needed to grind those D with one of their bigger guys out.

  20. iManny-O-War on

    I’m not a ledge guy. And if we win on Sunday I think we take the series. But, I’m pretty darn upset about losing last night. Probably because of the whole middle of the game where the team gave up trying to win.

  21. Carp- spot on assessment. Do you think now is the time for AV to get tough on this group? Maybe not Mike Keenan tough- but that effort was lacking…and sometimes maybe scaring the Carcillo out of your players isn’t a bad thing.

    Line juggling is weak- but what about sitting Nash and maybe even Richards (who is also way, way too inconsistent) for a period.

    You still have a team with a Vezina winning goalie, an Art Ross trophy winner and, perhaps, for McD a Norris contender.

    Kovalev got grilled for coasting or not moving his feet in the offensive zone. Leetch sat during game 4 of a conference finals.

    You don’t have to be a complete monarch or head-case like Iron Mike- but you need to send a message to your team that it wasn’t “ok…just need to execute.”

    It was pathetic hockey for a playoff game.

  22. Good first period, but bottom line–it was a 1-1 game at the end. So how good is that actually? Chances need to be finished–winning the shots battle, as the Rangers have done most nights this season, does not win games.

    Everything after that 1st was from the outside and way too casual. Mason only punched/slashed two guys because that’s the number of times Rangers got to the net.

  23. By the way, that goal by Matt Read was a set play, except Nash could’ve prevented the goal. Lazy play by him.

    The goalie should have prevented it.

  24. Amour – can’t blame Lundqvist on that one.

    True Bleu – Benching Leetch was one of the dumbest coaching decisions in all NY Sports history – u don’t bench superstars in the playoffs!

  25. Ranger-on-the-Isle on

    Anyone else think (see) that Moore was slew-footed by Voracek just before his penalty to Jer-ooo? Not to excuse the penalty but I thought I saw something there.

  26. FG: regarding your 9:20 and the emergency Rinaldo at the lacrosse game……..

    I agree with SNation. getting In the car and off to a nearby Starbucks or McDonalds will get’er done but also know this: because both are small venues and you may have to ask the manager for a key, all eyes will be on you when you enter with the “I gotta go” look on your face. You may therfore feel compelled to buy a happy meal or cafe mocha lite to pay for the “rental” of the John.

    Other alternatives:

    1) If you have time enough, I recommend searching for a Home Depot or Lowes. They are usually clean and you get lost in a sea of ‘do-it-your-self’ers’. Nobody ever notices you, so no purchase required.

    2) Nearby Woods or Desolute area – if you just arent going to be able to make it to one of the above. Put it back with the terra. (Mother Earth could always use the extra nutrients.)

    3) Final option -buy a large SUV, get your windows tinted amd travel with an empty bucket in your vehicle. Not bad, you turn on the stereo and / or read your car manual while taking care of business, , just like your on the throne at home.

    4) And remember, make it a point to carry some scrap paper in your pockets, especially during fall and winter when green leaves are hard to come-by. ALWAYS Stay away from brown leaves, poison Ivy and pine needles.

  27. Amour – can’t blame Lundqvist on that one.

    If you read enough comments, it’s as if Hank cannot be blamed for any goal.

    The Rangers in front of Hank did their job defensively. They limited the Flyers to 17 SOG through 2 periods. Yet, the Rangers were trailing 2-1 heading into the 3rd.

  28. Read should not have been playing this game…and NHL incompetence again impacts a series….rangers will get next 2

  29. Is it me or the Bruins, Habs, BJ Pens, Ducks, sharks, hawks, Avs wild and stars have a way better compete level than the Nash/Richie led blueshirts?

  30. Za'rat (TheOtherGuysGreed) Jones on

    You guys are all terrible fans. One little loss and all you guys do is blame blame blame!

    Well I say to that Shame Shame Shame!

    Leave those boys alone! They’re really trying hard!


  31. At least Brooksie wrote a proper article, defining Nash’s not so “fine” performances. Guy is a bust, he is not fine and should be traded for picks in the off season.

  32. One goalie stopped 37 of 38 SOG.

    The other goalie allowed 2 goals in the first 17 SOG.

  33. Oh SeeeDubbb, you crack me up. Two classic pop culture references inside of a half hour. I don’t know how you do it. Keep up the strong work!

  34. Last night’s game from Nash was not the least bit surprising to those who have accepted that he’s an extremely soft player who prefers to float on the outside, will refuse to do the dirty work necessary to win, and gets by on minimal effort because he’s got size and talent. Yeah, he’s got no onions or heart to speak of. That’s apparent. So accept the reality that Rick Nash has never and will never be a leader or the kind of player who will carry a team to a championship…let alone win a single playoff round.

    As for Brad Richards, his performance in Game 1 foretold how useless he would be in the next few games. Richie Rich fancies himself quite a hockey player. And once he has a good game he reverts to believing he’s one of the game’s elite by making sloppy, “hope it gets there” passes and floating throughout all three zones. Unfortunately, AV refuses to take him off the PP. And THAT is on the coach.

    I think Hank was half asleep on the first goal last night, but he was not to blame for the loss. Our “star” players were to blame along with a coaching staff whose strategy on that 4 on 3 sealed our fate.

    Best of 3 with two at home. If the Rangers lose this series it’s because they refused to compete for a long stretch in last night’s game as well as throwing in the towel in Game 2.

    Didn’t this team talk about “No Regrets” prior to the playoffs? They need to be called out on that because we’re only 4 games in and they’ve come out to compete 50% of the time.

    Enjoy the weekend everybody!! Look on the bright side – if they lose Sunday it’ll all be over. Just don’t see this group having the onions to come back from 3-2 down. If they win…well, it won’t be because of Rick “Hey, he almost hit me” Nash or Brad “I’ll be right behind you” Richards

  35. Thanks. Just trying to lighten the mood in the room. Get everyone ready for game five.

    LGR !!!

  36. Our “star” players were to blame along with a coaching staff whose strategy on that 4 on 3 sealed our fat

    Mason stopped 37 of 38 SOG. How about giving some credit to the other team?

  37. Za'rat (TheOtherGuysGreed) Jones on

    The reason we lost was because nobody said “Pozy Pozy Pozy” I looked. I can’t always be the only one to do it for you. Our boys need our help. It’s worked before. It will work again. Stop acting like such children and chant “Pozy Pozy Pozy” throughout the next game from beginning to end.

    You will see all the boys scoring.

    Yay for the boys!

  38. Last night, Nash was the boxer who spends the whole fight runnning from his opponent who exerts no attack until the last 15 seconds of each round thinking that he’ll finish the round strong, fool the judges and steal the victory away from his opponent.

  39. “14) Just sayin’ … Marian Gaborik threee playoff goals. Nash, Brassard, John Moore, Derek Dorsett 0.”


  40. Last night, Hank was the boxer who waits until the final round to exert himself, at which point he’s already trailing 11 rounds to 0, landing a few punches to fool the viewers into thinking the fight was more than just a money grab.

  41. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    Rangers certainly played minutes 20-58 without much urgency especially when compared to what every team other than TB and LA showed. Game 5, while not must win, but obviously important, needs to be followed up with an equally strong game 6.

    Rangers in 6.

    Book it

  42. Lobster- benching Leetch; counter-intuitive as it was- had the point of bringing the team together and demanded accountability.

    And, oh yeah, how’d that season end?

    I don’t think anyone hear doubts the talent of this team…on paper. Onions, guts- desire whatever you want to call it- it’s not there enough.

    It’s a best of three (once again in Rangerland) and who knows we might win this series….But you can’t keep losing “affordable” games- takes too much out of the tank.

    So, sit Nash, sit Richards- let them watch Zuccarello play like he’s 6″5′, not 5″6’…watch D-Moore use his surprising speed and watch Girardi play with a level of selflessness and shot blocking ability that verges on almost certifiable. And when those guys come to the bench tired and they’re sitting there getting paid to have the best seats in the house…maybe, just maybe that might send the message that there is accountability- and that there is the battle and there is the war; and if you don’t care to fight the battles how in the heck do you expect to win the war?

  43. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    What else would you expect from gabby, he scored 40 + during the season and will likely score 40 + next season as he is a perennially 40 goal scorer.

  44. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    But alas, Gabby’s team will be out in 5, so it really matters not.

    Buy Cally’s intangibles clearly were the difference in TB’s series. Otherwise, there’s a good chance TB gets swept.

  45. NYR_FAN; could not agree with you more- Voracek can flat out play; watch how he keeps moving his feet on and off the puck.

  46. In this series, he’s shown emotion and leadership. He’s scored big goals. He hits.

    Can’t really say all that about Ricky…

  47. 2011-2012 Rangers roster plus AV, Zuccarello, minus Fedotenko, would be owning this series. In fact, I’d argue the 2011-2012 Rangers plus AV would have at least made the finals.

  48. At the end do the day you could talk about Nash primary assists in game three he will be judged with 1 goal in last 16 games

  49. I hope the Ranger brain-trust (hee-hee) have an exit strategy for #61 NASH JESSIMAN.

    Tree more years of this guy’s on ice floating just not going to cut it for me.

  50. Eric, agree.

    No consistent effort and hideous short shifts.

    Nash isn’t just a “passenger”, he’s a fare-beating stow-a-way!

  51. i can’t figure out if I should feel bad for Nash because he is playing through some crazy ass headache or concussion type stuff or if i should hate’s doesn’t make sense that he can turn on the jets that late in the game or against an old team…

  52. Hal Gill is still in the NHL? Although slow and aging D-man won’t really matter on the PK if we just play catch around the perimeter; that statue of Mike Ricci the Sharks were using in practice would probably do just fine….

  53. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    Hank needs a a big game. Brassard’s line needs to get on the tally sheet, Richards needs a repeat of Game 1, and the Rangers must give 60 minutes….

  54. LOL. Av would have made the finals in 11-12.

    he could not have played this system with those grinders and no fourth line or third D-pair.

  55. Benching Leetch very nearly cost them the ECF. It was an egotistic maniac’s decision with which all the 20 guys in skates disagreed strongly.

  56. BickelsPickle on

    Damn, the Blackhawks are like really good. That sexy jersey doesn’t help either.

  57. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    The 2011-12 Rangers weren’t hapless sacks and Torts wasn’t channeling Scotty Bowman. That Ranger team was far better than they seem to get credit for. Given their dominance over the Bruins that year in therms of their physicality, the Rangers were a poorer version of, say, last year’s Bruins team. Some good skill, a lot of heart, and huge onions.

    Onions and heart are what win playoff games. Had Claude Julien or Babcock coached that Ranger team, they’d have gone as far if not further. Let’s stop with the St. Torts nonsense. He is a clown show.

  58. I have no sympathy for Nash at all. He has shown, VERY rarely, that he can play with the same intensity that Zucc brings EVERY SINGLE NIGHT. Nash chooses to play lazy…and that’s why he is deserving of the hatred tossed upon him.

    In regards to the Leetch benching in ’94, that was Keenan going off the rails and very nearly costing us our lone Cup victory in almost 75 years. He lost the team at that moment and I would say that from there on in it was Messier who took the reigns.

    Keenan hadn’t won a Cup before and hasn’t won a Cup since. He damn near imploded a championship team because of his ego. Only thing that saved the team was the fact that Messier was one of the few players in the league who Keenan would back down from (possibly the ONLY player)

  59. It was Messier and Lowe, and it was Campbell and Todd who drew up the Game 7 gameplan in the finals after Keenan decided to stop coaching.

  60. Forgot to give Lowe and the assistant coaches their props. Well said, Carp.

    Keenan’s inflated reputation needs an asterisk next to it. Although I don’t mind saying I’d love to see a coach give Nash the Keenan Treatment to wake him up to the fact that he’s doing it wrong out there.

  61. Nash isn’t the only one in the “no show” list last night. 2/3rd of their #1 line during regular season ( Brassard and Pouliot) were floating last night. Dorsett has been ineffective in what he could do. Klein had a few brain cramps. I’d give McD a free pass at the moment. Let’s just hope he gets better.

  62. Eddie- Vancouver was primed to fail this year, regardless. Torts didn’t help much, for sure. But their last 2 playoffs- they went in smokes, 1-4, and 0-4. They need to reset.

  63. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    Ilb – I’m sure Torts win a cup next year regardless of what team he -coaches- drives into the ground.

  64. eddie, I disagree on AV doing as well with the 11-12 team as Torts did, but do think Babcock would have fared better.

  65. Not very useful to argue about Hank’s performance. Apparently he has to stop every shot. How’s this: if he lets only 2 goals every game, don’t you thing his team should win most of them? His GAA in four games is 1.76. They should be getting ready for whoever wins Columbus/Pittsburgh series, not being 2-2.

  66. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    Again, the 2011-12 ranger team, until a late season collapse, were the President’s Trophy winner. And I’m sorry, as much credit as Torts deserves credit, that team could play. It had talent. It didn’t get pushed around. Players like Prust, Dubi, Cally, Rupp, Mitchell, Fed, Staal, Girardi, et al had balls big as buildings. They all still have balls bigger than buildings and yet Torts isn’t their coach. To attribute that team toughness all to torts is ridiculous. Those guys would play tough had I been their coach.

    Playoff hockey is about team toughness, timely scoring, and good goal tending.

  67. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    Latona – I didn’t say AV, I said Julien and Babcock. But while AV wouldn’t have played this year’s style, he certainly played a defensive style while with the Habs….so hard to say whether or not AV wouldn’t have been as successful….

  68. if he lets only 2 goals every game, don’t you thing his team should win most of them

    Mason stopped 37 of 38 shots in the game. Hank stopped 15 of 17 shots through the first 2 periods. Hank’s performance was adequate, but he was outplayed by Mason.

    In the Game 2 loss, Hank allowed 3 goals on 24 shots. Emery stopped 31 of 33 shots. Hank was responsible for that loss.

  69. E3 you hate him for obvious reasons but it’s silly to give a coach no credit for taking a 9-forward, 4-D team to 51 wins, 109 pts and the ECF.

  70. The Rangers forwards and defensemen recorded 71 SOG in Games 2 and 4 combined. They cannot be blamed for the opposing goalies only allowing 3 goals on those 71 SOG.

  71. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    Ricardo – he certainly deserves credit for that season, but that was not a horrible team. No matter how good a coach you have, without players, you cannot sustain any long term success. My contention is that Ranger team was better than given credit and a coach like Juluen or Babcock would have taken them further….

  72. 1994

    Fact: Keenan benched Leetch.

    Fact: Rangers won the Cup.

    I don’t see how “very nearly” plays into that. That’s purely subjective / speculative.

    I’ll argue (subjectively) that Keenan’s benching of Leetch was a genius move, made in an effort to close the remaining gap in team unity while they marched on to the SC.

    Keenan’s alleged handing of the reigns over to Campbell et el to “game plan” for game 7 victory? Really? C’mon Carp. Was it a change in game plan for game 7 or was it simply that the Ranger players grabbed a lead and played better than they did in game 5 and 6? Maybe it was attention to detail and execution. Perhaps, prior to game 7, Keenan was smart enough to check his ego at the door and let the veterans with a wealth of SCF experience who had been in these situation many times before (Messier and Lowe) lead the way?

  73. My contention is that Ranger team was better than given credit and a coach like Juluen or Babcock would have taken them further

    I agree with that sentiment, King Edward III.

    Torts is a one-trick pony. He cannot coach offense or a power play. He coaches defense and the penalty kill. In 2004, he was led by at least three superstars, and Khabibulin was a wall in that run.

  74. I’m sorry, but I find it ridiculous to criticize the one and only person who has coached this franchise to a Stanley Cup in 74 years.

    Talking Stanley Cups…..the end will always justify the means!

  75. Eddie Eddie Eddie on

    Wall Ball hockey is also boring to watch. The rumblings I read out of Nucks-land, and I have a friend (huge Nucks fan), seem to indicate that Torts’ style is not well liked. I think bottom line is that results are all that matter, and they’d be happy if winning, but they didn’t win.

  76. The Canucks were in freefall before Torts arrived. He was brought there to shake things up and start a rebuilt. Kind of like how how came to NY…
    It’s ridiculous to say that he is to blame for all of the Canucks failures…Not saying he did a great job this year though…

    I feel like Torts will never get his due from some folks. Some peeps just don’t like him. That’s fine. Either you appreciate what he did for NYR or you don’t. It’s pretty simple.

    Personally, I’d rather have Dubi, Anisimov, Gaborik and Torts rather than Nash, Brassard, Moore, Dorsett and AV.

  77. Make no mistake, the Nucks brought Torts in to win now, because they know the window is closing.

    I think the window has just closed, and that’s not all on Torts, it’s on Gillis for trading two starting fuggin goalies, which is why he’s not working anymore.

  78. That being said, you bring in a new coach next year, the results could be better, but not by much. That team does not have much going for them.

    They have the Sedins. What else? Kesler might be gone this summer, they have no goaltending.

  79. Rick Nash has been one of the best forwards on the ice this series. He has 23 SOG so far. His Corsi For Percentage is 52.7% in all 5v5 situations, his CF% in 5v5 close game situations is 56.1%, and his CF% in a small amount of 5v5 tied game situations is 72.4%.

    Are goals all that matter now?

  80. Orr, I think you’re probably right. Torts basically admitted that the window closed. Have you seen Torts’ presser from the end of the season? He told reporters “it’s not 2011 anymore” and talked about a rebuild. LOL.

  81. Torts made life interesting in Ranger land.

    Would have been real nice if he had won a Cup.

    Saw a little of a Torts in AV with his juggling of line-mates last night.

  82. LOL! At least he doesn’t sugarcoat it like a lot of coaches/GM’s. That’s what the Nucks fans and management need to hear, because it’s the truth.

    Looking at his coaching record, Torts has never made the playoffs in his first full season as a coach with Tampa, NYR, and now the Nucks.

    Lots of guys here have their issues with the guy, some for legitimate reasons, and a lot for dumb reasons, but he’s a damn good coach.

  83. Seems to me that you bring in a coach like Torts not for his brilliance or creativity, but because you think you have a group that needs discipline and a whip.

  84. Seems to me that you bring in a coach like Torts not for his brilliance or creativity, but because you think you have a group that needs discipline and a whip.

    I agree with that sentiment.

  85. Torts might thrive with an already talented, under-performing Big Ten NCAA program.

  86. Since I helped to start the Leetch discussion I’d like to clarify

    (1) Brian Leetch is and was the man and did not deserve to be benched. I want that to be clear and I’m not saying it “got us the Cup”; correlation is not causation…

    (2) More importantly, Keenan’s move, while risky, you could argue brought the team together (to paraphrase “Miracle…”maybe if they all hate him they’ll start hating each other…). Not the situation in ’94 and not the situation now; but:

    (3) Accountability; it’s all I’m asking for- and we can argue and debate Torts’ style, both in coaching and press conference, er “demeanor” vis-a-vis AV. But, as a fan, and that’s all I am- I’m just looking for some accountability and team unity. Play like it means something.

    (4) Maybe, just maybe- that comes from the coach showing some tough love. As mentioned, shuffling lines now I don’t see as a real solution; but ice time can change. I see Zucc, Poulit and Brassard as being due and they seem to get better w/ more ice time (granted, no stats to back that up- bash me on that presumption if you will). Instead of having Nash in front of the net on the PP; put Boyle there. Richards should be 2nd unit on the PP. etc.

    (5) Give those guys the back seat that they have “earned”; look at SJ benching guys like Havlat and Kennedy (roughly 10% of their overall salary) in favor of Hertl and Nieto.

    (6) I’d rather go down playing with a scrappy, hungry team than a team that looks like it’s playing a step slow and with emotional temperament of a Stepford Wives. We all remember the early 2000’s (or dark ages in some unofficial Rangers history chronicles).

    (7) This team is the better team- this team can win. But it requires more; Gretzky said one of his realizations on what it took to win was when he saw the Islanders lockeroom after they lost to them in the Finals. There wasn’t a raucous celebration- it was guys having a workmenlike celebration and they were bandaged up beyond belief. This team needs to make a statement that it won’t take shifts off- that it’s talent isn’t just on paper (or that effort can stop and start in the final minute of the game).

  87. Stranger Nation on

    A blend of Torts and AV would be the perfect mix, that is if we had the players to execute.
    Step, Richards, Brassard as your top 3 centers aint getting it done.

    Vancouver is not lacking in talent, but that style takes a while to get used to and hits the players where it hurts most; in the wallet from lower offensive production

  88. iLb2001

    Don’t disagree that Nash was not the only candidate last night for my Claude Rains award. But let’s not forget that Nash was THE MAN brought in for huge bucks to light the lamp certainly way more times than one goal in sixteen playoff games. And a guy his size, how bout just a little passion?

  89. Jut sayin’…Nash for Arti, Dubi, Erixon, and a 1st rounder?? And have you seen Dubi’s play against Cindy?? Regardless of health concerns, Nash is a bust thus far with the NYR, stating it any other way is an injustice to Ranger fans. One goal when it counts most….please.

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