Andrew Gross at the Bergen Record reports that Brian Boyle will replace Chris Kreider in the Rangers line-up tonight vs. the Islanders after being a healthy scratch for four straight games.
...i don't care if Kreider didn't have a great game against Boston, you absolutely, under no circumstances change your line-up in the middle of a win streak. Especially after just beating one of the best teams in your conference. Why would Torts want to mess with the team's momentum?
...listen, I get that Boyle needs to play to keep sharp, but if they lose tonight, fair or unfair, a lot of that blame could fall on Boyle. And how does that help his confidence, which is likely already hurting because of the benching.
...a follower of mine on Twitter mentioned that maybe Kreider's foot injury is acting up. Really the only thing that makes sense. Although Torts hinted at a lineup change yesterday, so who knows.
Here are the lines from the morning skate...
...that third line went from a speed energy line to one that'll look like it's skating in molasses tonight. Although, I do like Cally on that top line.
In other line-up news, Marty Biron will start in goal.
...i like the move. Biron looked real solid against Tampa two weeks ago and Hank needs his rest. Why not against the struggling Islanders?
And of course we all know...
(h/t to reader Chris H, via Rangers Memes Facebook page)
This is what i think is Torts biggest weakness.. -his what seem to be impatience in seeing magic happen within a certain line up.. He really need to come out and explain better why he changes the lines all the time.
It's not like Kreider's been effective. He doesn't get shots, He's not much good on the walls. Rarely hits anyone....in fact I'd say he's pretty soft for his size. His hockey IQ has been questioned by some scouts in the past and I concur. Has a history of taking dumb penalties. Most of the time he doesn't look like he's in the game.
Personally, I like the move... give Kreider a day off to maybe nurse his ankle a little more and bring in an angry Boyle to hopefully redeem himself... If Miller is as ineffective tonight against the islanders I don't see why we don't send him down to mature.... and if boyle plays poorly and miller is effective, keep miller up and demote boyle to his healthy scratch spot
I know this isn't the right forum, but anyone see the karelsson injury. Unbelievable, really feel for him. That team loses spezza and karelsson in two weeks that sucks
omg. i got it.
everytime we go on the poweplay, have an extra guy jump on AS SOON as the faceoff is over. if we get a few more seconds with a 6 on 4 we get a few more seconds. but when we're caught, it will be 4 on 4 hockey for almost the full 2 minutes. the rangers are terrible at 5 on 4. they are completely shit stained 5 on 3. but 4 on 4?
@IcyCup Here's a question ... When do we start holding Torts and Sullivan responsible for the abysmal PP this team has had since they took over? Maybe it's not the players but Torts style of coaching holding back their creativity. Just a thought!
@IcyCup --- I don't know why they haven't already implemented this plan
Starting Biron is the smart move. He has a 13-0-1 in his last 14 starts against the Isles.
Now, this whole Brian Boyle thing. It's interesting. I think this is as much a final audition for Boyle as it is Miller. If Boyle can come in and make a difference and show he's a different player, I think we may see Miller get sent back down. It's hard to judge by one game, but it's also hard to tell how well Miller will continue playing in just five. If Boyle is a non-factor in the game and Miller continues to play at a solid level, Miller will stay. If both Boyle and Miller are solid, I think Kreider will have to step up his game.
Do I agree with Kreider's benching? No. Am I completely against it? No I am a superstitious type, but that's my own issue.
I think the Miller situation is tricky. From a skill perspective, yeah he can play. But there's more to look at. With a year being taken off his entry level contract, he becomes a RFA in the 2014-2015 season. The UFAs that year consist of Gabby, Cally, Boyle, Pyatt, Powe, Asham, Girardi, Stralsy, Bickel, Biron, and Hank. The RFAs would be Miller, Kreider, and Del Z. That's a lot of players as well as a lot of money. In no way will all those guys be resigned (Asham, Boyle, Pyatt, Bickel, Biron may retire). One can hope that they figure out the situation with Cally and Hank before that time comes. But the fact of the matter is Miller would be a RFA at a time when the Rangers may be going through a lot of roster changes. It may end up being best if Miller is sent down for this reason alone.
@JoshKaye So let me get this straight. For the sake of $$$, you would make your lineup worse thus reducing your chance of winning the cup by sending Miller down? The Devils, who have less $$$ to work with than the Rangers kept Matteau on their roster b/c they felt he could help them this year AND in the future. Gabby will NOT be re-signed. He's not a Torts type of player, Boyle will be gone b/c you can find a 4th line center anywhere. Asham will be gone b/c of age. Bickel and Stralman will prob be gone b/c by then some of the young D should be ready to step in such as McIrath. You can't play to win the cup in 2013 worried about what your salary situation will be in 2014-2015. You play your best players and I firmly believe a lineup with Kreider and Miller in it is better than one without. Boyle is what he is ... A soft 4th line player with limited skills. Kreider offers the lineup more.
@TruBluEsp Miller has provided a spark for this team, that's something I won't ever deny. The question is will be keep it up all season? I don't know if he will, but then again I don't know if he won't. It all comes back to him being 19. I don't even believe it has to be Boyle in the line up. If we do send Miller down I absolutely expect to see Mashinter up to take his spot. Just because Miller may be sent down doesn't mean we won't bring someone back up. It doesn't always have to go back to Boyle. You absolutely have to think about the future with a decision like this since it doesn't just have an impact now, it will have an impact on the future.
@TruBluEsp Yeah I agree with you about the 6 game thing. As for Mashinter, he's clearly not just a big body who can fight. The guy can produce. When Miller was with the Whale, he had 20 points in 37 games. Mashinter had 8 points in 11 games. If Mashinter continues to play at that level he would outscore Miller. I believe Mashinter is a player we see up this year at some point. We don't know if he could bring the same type of play that Miller does. But I wouldn't be against finding out.
@JoshKaye I understand your point but I disagree about Mashinter. I think Mahinter only gets called up to replace Asham if he gets hurt. Mashinter or Boyle cannot match Miller's skills. If Miller was being overwhelmed on the NHL level the I agree to send him down but he's not and so far, based on what I've seen, he should stay b/c he will grow on the NHL level. On another note, I don't like this 6th game or more rule. 6 games is not enough time to truly evaluate a player.
This comment has been deleted
last game for miller up here before the team needs to make a decision. it will be interesting to see how he responds to that.
Kreider needs to get his balls up and not let guys push him around..not like he is a small guy..JT Miller got smacked after a play and went right back at the guy..Boyle no better. Softest 6'7" player in the league..needs to learn to fight or actually pound a guy into to the boards if he wants to stay in line up..also he is slow as s##t.
Kreiders ice time was lower than normal. He had the 2nd fewest ice time as a forward. I think its cause of his ankle.
One of many reasons why Torts make me want to slap the crap out of him, you should never mess with chemistry.
@IcyCup -- Boyle WILL have a good game tonight.
or else .....
@GLENsatherVSglennDANZIG -- Haha, I know what you would do, Glen. Not a bad plan if the right guy is available.
@IcyCup @AG_Blue he would have to have a hat trick to get me on his side. I see no value to him especially with mash in our system. Cut your loses and get the dman with the howitzer.
@slapshot13j -- i trust the coaches to gauge the situation. Sometimes it's the best thing to watch a game.
@AG_Blue @IcyCup @Iron Mike I agree if they go to the whale, but in and out of the lineup, not playing is he worst possible thing for them
Doesn't hurt Kreider or Miller to go back down to the Whale -- not saying I want them there -- but this is a nice problem for the club to have.
@AG_Blue @IcyCup @Iron Mike he also has to prove that he is more valuable than someone else on the team. Which is why I hope that torts can decide on his lineup and let some of these players play through their struggles. I don't think it helps Kreider going in and out of he lineup every night.
@Iron Mike @AG_Blue @IcyCup sometimes a mad dog is to crazy, bs doesn't get the job done. If he makes some mistakes tonight, he very well could be traded pretty soon. He needs a good game to stay in NY I would say
@slapshot13j i think you answered your own question here. besides, richy can turn around and have a monster game, number wise and with clutch goals.
@IcyCup and he always talks about holding people accountable, yet it seems like he only ever threatens Gaborik, who in my opinion has done a lot more than Richards so far
@AG_Blue @IcyCup honestly I cud have more points than Richards if I was playing between Gaborik and Nash for 6-8 games. I mean look at how Hagelin and Stepan's numbers have skyrocketed with Nash....
@slapshot13j @IcyCup -- somehow Gaby and Richie are tied with 9 points apiece ... stats don't tell the whole story and I agree Richards has been somewhat invisible from where I'm watching, but there's a leadership component we don't get to experience -- i know that leadership has to translate to the game, but, again, tied for second in points.
@IcyCup but if we are looking at it like torts is. I would say Richards has been the worst player on the team in the last 2 or 3 games. Completely invisible.
@slapshot13j -- Miller plays all three forward positions well.
@AG_Blue @slapshot13j he was also playing on a crap line when he was on the wing. But I agree I prefer him at center.