Yesterday, the remainder of Alain Vigneault's staff was officially announced with the unveiling of Scott Arniel as the new Associate Coach (aka second in command) along with Ulf Samuelsson & Daniel Lacroix being named as Assistant Coaches.
Arniel will be in charge of the forwards and the power play, while Samuelsson will oversee the defense and penalty kill. Lacroix will serve as Vigneault's eye in the sky.
One issue I observed lots of Rangers fans discussing after this announcement was the past friction between Arniel and Derick Brassard from their Columbus days. In fact it got so tense that back in 2011, Brassard's agent actually released a statement criticizing Arniel for making his client the scapegoat for the Blue Jackets' struggles.
During a Rangers live chat yesterday, Jim Cerny said Brassard is ready to put the past behind him...
"I spoke to Brassard about his relationship with Arniel and he admitted it was rocky at times...but he respects Arniel, believes he himself has grown up, and is confident that this will be a solid addition to the team."
...while I'm a big fan of the Samuelsson and Lacroix hirings, bringing Arniel on board still has me scratching my head.
...last season Brassard was the perfect example of a player who needed a change of scenery. So it is absolutely baffling to me why the Rangers would want to put him back into that negative scenery. I don't care what Brassard says about Arniel being a solid addition, if you fed him a few shots of peach schnapps I guarantee you he'd admit his preference for another associate coach.
...and beyond the issues with Brassard, there are five other Rangers (Nash, Dorsett, Moore, Stralman and Johnson) who failed to succeed while playing under Arniel in Columbus before he was fired after a 45-60-18 combined record. So it's not like he's had a productive history with the former Blue Jacket players on this team.
...having said all that, Arniel is very close to AV from their time together in the Canucks organization, so if having him on the bench makes Torts' replacement comfortable and ultimately translates into the Rangers being a better team then I guess I have to support it.
Speaking of Brassard, MSG Networks has announced that he'll be showcased in this year's season of "Beginnings." Here's a pic of Brassard in his basement...
...seriously? What is up with the Crosby jersey? As soon as he became a member of the Rangers he should have been forced to destroy that thing.
Yawn, guess there is no news today...these are professionals. I would rather see a different AC as well but I wouldn't worry about what happened in the past. It will be fine.
even though I don't understand why Arniel specifically was hired, he is a very good PP coach. For 3 years when he did BUF's his PP was top 5 minus one season, one of the seasons it was #1. It could be a good hiring if him and Brass don't clash.
Non issue I think. Brassard's agent, Allan Walsh, is notorious for advocating for his clients by criticizing their coaches, when things aren't going smoothly. (which you can't really blame either, cause a non-visible client who's not getting ice time, is not a good client)
And in fairness, Brass was really struggling with CBJ when Arniel started to bench him which caused the war of words. And it's not like Brass really shut up and just worked harder to play better either, so some of it falls on him too.
This is nowhere near Hasek/Nolan so I don't think there's anything to worry about, especially since Arniel is not the head coach.
I like that even though you're in the NHL you still take your equipment and spread it out on the floor to dry out. Good to see I'm doing things correctly.
Every basement needs a dartboard, no?
This whole thing with Arniel is getting blown WAY out of proportion. First of all, by most all accounts, the players loved Mike Sullivan, how'd that work out? Secondly, it's a helluva lot more important for the head coach to be comfortable with his second in command than it is for the players. The players need to STFU and play, it's their job. If they do their jobs and succeed, everyone's happy. If they do their jobs and fail, it will reflect on the coaching. If they pout and don't do their jobs because they don't like a guy, then they should just quit the game and sign up for daycare. And third, many coaches are much more effective when they are not in the head coach role (e.g. Jim Schoenfeld, Buddy Ryan, Wade Phillips, PJ Carlissimo, etc.). Arniel sucked as head coach for a bad Columbus team, but we haven't seen him yet in an assistant role where he can concentrate on 2 facets of the game.
Man, I can't imagine drinking schnapps, but I'd almost do it to hear the truth. I'm sure his comments reveal only his best intentions and a professional mode of conduct. In any case, it would be ridiculous if this re-emerged as an issue.
Some franchises try to emulate winners to become winners themselves. We emulate the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Is the upside down pic supposed to represent something? I agree I think AV made the call and we will have to live with it, but I hope that they can work through their differences - definitely a risky move and one that many of us will be watching closely. That being said sully was able to hang on long past his time because of Torts so we may be stuck with Arniel for the long haul - I just hope it doesn't have a negative impact with Brass or anyone else!
I don't see this as being a big deal. If Arniel was the head coach, then yes, but the associate coach doesn't have the authority to bench Brassard or anyone else for that matter.
@jasonshyer me too, until they score a power play goal
@PenaltySh0t I like what you're selling!
@VinnieR It probably stinks so bad in that room. lol
@gravey94 Wait, you want me to give him a chance before I make up my mind on him? C'mon now.
@AG_Blue I think only becomes an issue if Rangers are losing. Winning cures everything.
@JMK8363 What upside down pic?
@cb1 I hear you, but Arniel is second in command, so he will have a lot of say in what goes on with the Rangers. Plus, I think just having a guy on the staff who Brassard doesn't have a good relationship with can't be a good thing.
2002-2003 PP was ranked 20th on a 14.4 conversion rate (talent in BUF that year was absolutely dreadful that year, Miroslav Satan was their far and away best player....that says something)
2003-2004 PP was ranked 19th on a 15.8 conversion rate where again talent was very scarce.
2005-2006 PP was ranked 3rd in the league on a 21% conversion rate, with a very solid Buffalo team (I'd say that team is about equal to our offense this coming year)
he's no wizard at coaching the PP but he definitely knows what he's doing. And in place of Mike Sullivan.....that's really all I ask for lol.
@KevinDeLury Yeah, it's probably terrible. He should put that Crosby jersey on the floor and put his dirty equipment on top of that. Keep the floor from smelling.
True enough, but if the Rangers struggle, maybe the coaches don't have to resort to the old scapegoat method.
brass just needs to play like he played for us last year and everything else will be a nonissue. I can't wait to watch this kid for an entire season! he could be my favorite ranger forward to watch. he is so smooth and intelligent. I have been watching the summer hockey reruns and he had really left a huge impression on me. DROP THE FRIGGIN PUCK!!!
@KevinDeLury I play a couple times a week and recently brought my truck in for service. The service guy recommended getting my AC freshened as well to get rid of that musty smell. Actually, there's nothing wrong with my AC, it was just the lingering smell of hockey equipment...
I don't think Sather cares if players like a coach whoever the player is. Arniel will be a lot less of a pill to swallow than Torts. And AV is more of a players coach so maybe a little good cop bad cop would be good as not to get complacent.
@GLENsatherVSglennDANZIG I agree. Love the brand of hockey he brings to the table. Especially his passion.