...got to admit this is very surprising considering Torts' comments yesterday. But I'll take it. Obviously, the move is to put Kreider on the third line with Miller and Boyle, while dropping Pyatt down to the fourth line with Halpern and Powe.
...mixed emotions on Haley. I thought he did a heck of a job for the Rangers. Assuming this means Torts is more comfortable with Asham than Haley.
Speaking of Asham, Andrew Gross at the Bergen Record reports that he skated with the team again today and is hopeful for a Sunday return to the line-up...
“Yeah I think I’m a few games away, maybe Sunday,” Asham said. “I’ve got three good skates in right now and everything is feeling pretty good. I’ve just got to get my wind going and I should be fine.”
Asham adds that even if he's ready, he's not 100% sure Tortorella will instantly insert him back into the line-up.
...big decision for Torts on Sunday. Does he look to sit someone like Pyatt, who, while playing better of late, has scored just one goal in the last 22 games, or does he roll without any real toughness in the line-up. Will be interesting to see..
At practice today, Gross notes that Marty Biron was the only goalie and will likely start tomorrow at MSG against the Florida Panthers.
...Florida is a no doubt start for Biron. Having said that, tomorrow has trap game written all over it. Rangers playing well and the lowly Panthers come to town. While most fans will think this is a layup, I will be very impressed if the Rangers can get a win.
Gross adds that Henrik Lundqvist's absense from the optional is much ado about nothing as John Tortorella says his Vezina winning goaltender is fine after taking a Dan Girardi elbow to the head last night.
I sure hope he is up here to stay. He needs to play more physical and shoot the puck. If he's gained any confidence down in Hartford I hope it translate inot his play up here. Good Luck Chris!
In terms of ice time, Torts has always said that the players are the ones who determine how much they play. If Kreider is physical and uses his body with abandon the way Miller has, he'll play Miller type minutes I imagine. If he's a mouse like he was last time, he'll play 5.
Kreider's been looking good on the power play and pk while he's been at Hartford. Would love to see him on both with the Rangers.
I would have like to have seen Kreider get a few more games with the Whale before coming back, and Haley looked pretty good. Maybe a goal or 2 from the 3rd line? How will Boyle ever keep up with those 2 fast kids
Glen Sather going to hospital to have surgery for prostate cancer and is going to be hospitalized during the GM meetings. Get well soon. Doubt Gaborik gets traded by our assistant GM
I don't like it. Haley was a tough little grinder. He'll be back anyway as soon as Asham gets hurt again.
@TheNYRBlog I like Haley over Asham...think he brings more to the table
should have put this here earlier. my bad.
not sure Kreider will get any scoring chances on the 3rd line. If he's not scoring and he's still developing the defensive side of his game, then what's the point of him being here? I like Kreider but burying a speedy kid like him on the bottom two lines probably doesn't help much.
Still don't understand the Asham signing. A waste of a roster space.
I'm confused what sort of message sending Haley down sends to the team...I don't think it's a fluke the Rangers started to play better when he was inserted...he wasn't Prust or Avery-esque but he still hustled and played hard every shift...hopefully he's worn off on the team a bit
@Andrew794 -- Haley being sent down is not a message to the team. Haley did a good job, he even had a couple scoring chances, and I'm sure we can expect to see him again, but his inspired play in his first games had tapered off of late. I'm sure that everybody, including Haley, never expected him to finish the season with Rangers. He did his part to get called up again.
I will miss Haley but this is a big move for our team going into the playoffs.
I also think that Asham Should replace Pyatt. He will do a much better job on the 4th line and Boyle has earned his spot on the 3rd line with the youngsters.
I'm amazed to see how many people are saying they don't need toughness in the line up. If you really think that Pyatt gives the fourth line a better chance to score than Asham thats fine but who is going to step in when teams start taking runs at people? Having no toughness on the team, especially with the style the rangers play, would be a mistake.
@Jbianco I agree. With you big time on this one.
@Jbianco I'm with you. Need someone in the line-up who can drop the gloves. Whether that's Bickel or Asham.
@Jbianco I think they're going to go game by game with it. Tomorrow the lineup might be totally devoid of toughness with Asham not back yet and Bickel scratched, but it's the Panthers, so they can probably get away with it. Even Sunday they might not have Asham back yet. Once the opponents get tougher, Asham might be in for Pyatt or whoever is playing poorly, or Bickel for Hamrlik.
Hopefully Kreider plays like a fearless bastard like Miller this time. Hopefully Chris sees the game tape of JT last night and gets told he needs to play like that.
These are the lines I would like to see. Hagelin Stepan Nash, kreider Richards Callahan, miller Boyle Gaborik, powe Halpern pyatt. If you do this top 3 lines have to be rolled. I think torts goes Nash Richards Gaborik, Hagelin Stepan Callahan, kreider Boyle miller, powe Halpern pyatt though. Opting not to split up the big 3
@slapshot13j I hate to say this, believe me, but I agree with you... I think Nash, Richards and Gaborik need to play on 3 different lines. I think It makes us a better team. I would put Gaborik on a line with either Stepan or Hags. I think he needs one of those two if not both to be his best. Im not so worried about Nash. But I can live with your lines. Maybe Gaby needs to be on a line with some muscle...
@TheNYRBlog Boyle or Pyatt likely choices if you ask me. Miller may center Kreider and Pyatt, or Boyle centers Kreider and Miller
"While most fans will think this is a layup, I will be very impressed if the Rangers can get a win." You're absolutely right in what you wrote about this being a trap game. On the other hand, it's not like the Rangers are on a 10 game winning streak. They won back to back games over two teams sort of in their own league. Not like they beat Pittsburgh, Boston, etc. Enough with the excuses. The Rangers need to win this game and take no prisoners. We're talking about their playoff lives here and they should play accordingly.
Anyone else feel like this move might be to showcase Kreider before deadline? I hope not--I think the Rangers are building the right way.....I just don't think Tortorella is a big fan of Kreider. Pretty sad to be honest. He has to give us more than Pyatt or Powe does.
@LanceGold1 Why are you hating on Powe? His job is not to score goals. His job is to play solid defense, win face-offs, and score the occasional goal. Although he hasn't scored the occasional goal, he has excelled at the other things I mentioned.
I just think Pyatt and Powe are 4th liners--not really hating on them--I just think they are much the same...I would prefer to see our 4th line consist of Asham and Haley along with Halpern to be fair.....as I personally think when we play teams like Boston and Toronto--we are going to get manhandled physically with no one there to protect our skilled players.
@TruBluEsp @LanceGold1 @nyrfan747 First of all, Eminger is not as bad as you make him out to be, as the 6th Dman. Has been solid out there, and I do watch every game. But hey, we can disagree on that. Rupp would be a waste of a roster spot because he is one dimensional. If all those players could do was fight I would say they are all a waste of a spot. Haley brings some jam and I like his game for a 4th liner. He has some speed and played well so far. Asham wouldn't be a waste because he does a lot more than fight. He has skills, he can score more that Rupp ever did. So you are comparing apples to oranges. Bickel is and will always be a waste of a spot, unless he learns how to play defense.
@ivanricov @LanceGold1 @nyrfan747If you're version of good is watching guys consistently skate by him and watching him turn the puck over at least twice a game, no thanks. Yes, I agree Eminger is better than Bickel. With that said, they way Torts uses his 6th dman, I'd dress Bickel even if it is for just 5-6 mins a game. Would you have said that Rupp, Haley or Asham playing 5-6 mins and 1 fight is a waster of a roster spot? Don't think so.
@TruBluEsp @LanceGold1 @nyrfan747 You are insane... Eminger has been good, and under no circumstances do you ever put bickel back in the lineup... He is just useless out there. I dont see how you can justify him being there for 3 min of icetime and one fight. Waste of a roster space. One guy who fights does not a tough roster make. Playing hard in the corners and grinding it out is all the toughness we need.
wouldn't mind seeing kreider hagelin and miller on a line with all that speed stepan callahan and pyatt played well together at one point earlier this season
@jglass820 Great idea but I like this :
Nash- Stepan - Haglin
Cally - Miller - Kreider
Gaborik - Richards - Boyle
Pyatt/Asham - Halpern - Powe
Bickel in for Hamrlik allows them to keep the toughness as well as put their best forwards out there. I havent seen anything from Hamlik that screams he needs to be in the lineup
@JbiancoBickel for Eminger is my preference. Hamrlik needs to stay in the lineup. Get him in shape and veteran presence will be an asset.
Now all "toughness" completely gone from line up. Bad move sending Haley back down. Asham is a waste.
im all for kreider but my guess is pyatt could be the odd man out powe is to good on the pk and asham is your tough guy and your third line becomes automatically better if kreider can play like jt