Today officially marks the end of yet another unsuccessful season for the New York Rangers in their quest for hockey's holy grail. While not everything about this season should be looked at in a negative light, it marks the next step in the process of a team that will (at least in my opinion) be right back to, if not much further than they finished this season.
When asked to assess his playoff performance, Rick Nash said, "Good." When asked what surprised him about New York, Nash said, "Traffic."— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) May 27, 2013
Seriously, a player of Rick Nash's caliber doesn't go from what he did in the regular season to basically evaporating come playoff time. Somethings amiss...
Richards also said the season was a mess for him. He said he was prepared to go for camp in September, but obviously that didn't happen.— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) May 27, 2013
Absolutely inexcusable for a guy whose salary is second highest in the NHL fail to prepare and train for the season even through the lockout which could've ended at any time. His contract puts the club in a pretty pickle if he ultimately stays aboard and manages to avoid being bought out.
#NYR Brian Boyle: "I sucked this year." Said he wasn't in good enough shape to start season— Katie Strang (@KatieStrangESPN) May 27, 2013
Boyle wasn't involved in lockout talks to my knowledge, what's his excuse for not preparing himself?
Girardi confirms hes fully healthy. No work needed— Patrick Kearns (@PatrickKearns) May 27, 2013
Although his play suffered in the Boston series, what a warrior Dan is. Forget about Robert Downey Jr., Dan Girardi is Iron Man.
Clowe, UFA in July, says he's open to returning to NYR. He said he was close to getting back. He wouldn't say concussion, but he hinted it.— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) May 27, 2013
Clowe made a salary of $4 million dollars this past season, unless he's willing to come back for around 2.5, there will simply be no cap room for him due to the RFA's the team has to sign.... Speaking of those guys....
#NYR Stepan said he wants to stay with Rangers for the long haul. Said he wants to end career with NYR— Katie Strang (@KatieStrangESPN) May 27, 2013
Nice to hear Stepan wants to be a Ranger lifer. His game took a tremendous leap forward, now to replicate that with a full season and a new contract will be a challenge.
Ryan McDonagh, RFA, says he will be all eyes and ears in contract negotiations. He said he is salary arbitration eligible.— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) May 27, 2013
Long term, big money for Mactruck. I'm thinking he gets something similar but slightly more than Staal.
Staal says his eye will probably never be fully recovered but he expects to return at the same level he was playing at before the injury.— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) May 27, 2013
I know I'm not the only one getting Bryan Berard flashbacks. After all the health issues he's dealt with over the last two seasons, to have him play at the level he's very capable of to start next season would be miraculous.
#NYR Asked abt potential contract extension Lundqvist said "We'll see. I'll talk to my agent and go from there."— Katie Strang (@KatieStrangESPN) May 27, 2013
A lot to take from this... Henrik is a competitor, first and foremost. He's going to go where he thinks he has the best chance to win a cup. He knows the money is going to be there, as any 30 teams wouldn't hesitate to make him the highest paid goaltender in the history of the NHL. It is a pretty major life choice he is going to have to make between now and July 1, 2014 and I would expect him to take his time. After all, the NHL is a business and after the lockout we, as fans, should be very accustom to this.
Tortorella took blame for not getting his team back into the right frame of mind to play Boston after winning Game 7 against Washington.— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) May 27, 2013
Tortorella on mindset: "I thought we did enough, but as I watched us play it wasn't enough. ...— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) May 27, 2013
Tortorella cont.: "The biggest part of my job is that and how you handle your top players to get them to play. That falls on my shoulders."— Dan Rosen (@drosennhl) May 27, 2013
Tortorella's job has been discussed at length quite a bit here and I think its safe to say a majority of fans want him out. Considering the short-falls of the club, he has directed the Rangers to 15 playoff victories over the past two seasons. He will be back for another go in October. But if the Rangers issues with scoring and power play woes continue to plague the team into next year and team is mired in inconsistent mediocrity again, the axe will likely fall on Torts.
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Just saying, people are talking about us only having 13 million free, unless the cap goes down more... we also get an additional 7 million from the two buyouts that are now off the books (Drury and Redden)... just wondering about that
I am hopeful Staal proves healthy before the draft. in which N.Y. should trade him to Carolina (who identified a need for a big defenseman this off season) for Justin Faulk (not that I'm big on him, but he is their best defenseman) and Carolina's no.1 pick. The pick could be used for a center or Darnell Nurse, who projects to be available with the no. 5 pick. I love Staal, but I fear he will never be 100% again, the trade will net us two young players, and free up another $4 mil. on cap space.
Below is from a post at Blueshirt Banter....
Let's start where everything should start when it comes to the New York Rangers: Henrik Lundqvist. I happened to be away from the computer during the breakup day interviews and when I was able to check Twitter I saw a plethora of people panicing over the comments Lundqvist made about his contract extension. The answer wasn't as bad as what was tweeted. Here's what he actually said -- note: all quotes unless otherwise noted have come from Andrew Gross:
Lundqvist said he would talk to his agent when asked whether he'd be willing to discuss a contract extension this summer. The franchise goalie is signed through next season. "I've had such a great time here in New York...Right now I'm just trying to get over this year but we'll see. I'll talk to my agent and we'll go from there."
That's a whole hell of a lot different than my original thoughts (from the tweets I saw) where I thought a reported asked him if he planned to re-sign. This is a negotiating tactic. Why should Lundqvist re-up right now? It makes no sense. Let him at least get a look at what the Rangers are building. Trust me, he's not going anywhere.
I read the back and forth between blaming the coaches and blaming the players. One thing I saw that Torts blamed himself for was not having the players in the right mindset for the second round after the game 7 against the caps. I am sorry, but unless someone explains it to me differently, this has me very concerned. Excuse the language, but why the Fuck do you need anyone to tell you to come out and play hungry any night in the NHL, let alone the second round of the playoffs. To me that is 100 percent on the players and 200 percent on captain Ryan Callahan. Not only did cally not produce on the ice, but then you hear this kind of crap about the team not being mentally prepared, Cally better become more vocal. This has me very nervous about the core of the team. Also, Nash's comments have me afraid that he is not that hungry to win, and is just on coast mode all year unless he gets annoyed, which is few and far between...
Just read about Staal's injury in depth for the first time... That is one of the scariest things I have ever heard... He had a small hole in his eye this whole time he was trying to work his way back, causing headaches and dizziness when he tried to play through it... Jesus Christ man, hopefully this guy can catch a break for the next couple of years...
Richards, out. If he gets injured or can't get back into his old game we're screwed for years. Del Zotto, out. Bring in a guy with a cannon who won't turn it over with unneeded stretch passes. Clowe, no need to bring back. Love Clowes style of play, but he's headed towards a lot of time on the DTD and IR if the end of this season says anything. Need to add depth and get some toughness back in the line up. Also wouldn't mind someone with speed who can actually put it in the net, Hagelin isn't cutting it.
No I don't expect teams to ask players about trades. But the team went to the ECF then lost 5 players that helped them get there. Hank probably doesn't want to see the chemistry of the team disrupted again by so much.
Management and Lundquist need to sit down this summer and get on the same page. I think that the ball is not entirely in Hank's court. There are not many teams that can offer what N.Y. can. A high profile to capitalize and maximize endorsements and lifestyle, a team that will spend to always remain competitive, and an endearing fan base. Hank also needs to understand that this is a different NHL these days. With the salary cap shrinking, teams can ill afford to use 1/8th of the payroll on one player. The more the payroll is spread around, the more talent and deeper the team is. I for one, do not want to see any more long term contracts issued anymore on the Rangers. A 5yr. max seems about right.
OK, I admit it, I got caught up in the firestorm around Hank's "I'll talk to my agent" comments that were PRINTED. I finally got to see his full interview with reporters here and there's no doubt in my mind now that he was being coy because he knows there's a contract negotiation coming up. Damn print media a-holes! He sounds disappointed, but he also sounds like a guy that knows his team is real close! http://blueshirtsunited.com/videos/3535/lundqvist-we-were-hoping-for-more#.UaUJ9LW1Fyx
Nash apologists are trying to mince words here. Tough does not mean that he has to be Prust. Tough means he can't be a 6'4" PERIMETER PLAYER that doesn't take a hit to make a play, NEVER finishes a check and rarely skates into the dirty areas. Pardon me, but I think that almost EVERYONE that Sage mentions in response to my post has made a career of being THAT type of hockey tough....barring perhaps Bossy and Gretzky. And first I would say that Bossy and Gretzky he is not....nor will he ever be. When a player is THAT much better than the rest even BASIC hockey toughness is sometimes overlooked. Plus....these guys were not giants. Nash is NOT Bossy, nor Gretzky, he IS a giant and he DOESN'T play with basic hockey toughness. Huuuuuge difference.
So while you argue that Nash doesn't have to be tough in terms of the narrow way you define it I would agree, BUT he is actually SOFT....not even hockey tough and THAT is not only unacceptable, but will poison the team given his size and stature. He must change, or the Rangers are in for a long difficult haul with him.
I haven't read all the comments but this is the quote I read from hank:
“It’s a step back,’’ Lundqvist said of the second-round loss to the Boston Bruins in five games. “I highly expected us to be better, but this year didn’t go our way. Just because we had success last year, you can’t expect it to happen every year.”
“I will talk to my agent and see where we are,’’ Lundqvist said. “I’ve had a great time in New York. They have treated me really well. We’ll see where it goes.”
Lundqvist can become an unrestricted free agent after next season, and the questions have begun about what he might do this summer before his six-year, $41 million contract concludes.
Hank should start worrying about the himself. He can't look himself in the mirror & say he isn't partly to blame for the losses the last 2-years. He was mediocre & let in 2-3 bad goals against the Devs last year & did the same thing against the Bruins this year. Hank is great & I want him back however, he still has to prove he can carry a team to the Cup cause any impartial observer will tell you he is far from perfect.
You offer him an extension for max money, if he doesn't take it then you trade him BEFORE he walks. He is a core player he is either commited or not. If he wants to "wait & see" next year you make the decison for him& trade him . No one guy is bigger then any organization & if you give him that power its a mistake.
I for one am starting to get irritated w-him. Now, I know this is just posturing on his part but what if Torts was asked about a long term deal for Lundquist & he said "Hank's been great but we want to wait & see what happens cause though its been great he let in a few softies & we want to keep our options open"? We all would kill Torts for that & rightfully so. So no, I don't feel sorry for Hank at all. I live & bleed w-the rangers & have for 40-years. I don't want to hear shit from a guy who hasn't won anything that he wants to see what happens. What more can the Rangers do to show hiim theyare commited? They spend to the Cap every year. They signed Drury, Gomez, Redden, & Richards & had to eat moneywhen they didn't work out. They signed Gabby, traded for Nash. They want to win & if he doesn't trust Sather, Torts, & the front office to make the right moves then he should go. Cause I understand when players take more money to leave or if they leave cause an organization is not commited to winning. What I cannot accept is when the fans are more commited to the team then the players. If he doesn't want to sigm an extension to be here then see ya later. Cause we lost w-you we can lose w-out you.
@Jbianco yep...was honestly not expecting him to go.
Nevermind just saw cap is going down to 63 million... makes me wonder how certain teams are going to get down to the cap... like Chicago, Vancouver, Minnessota, Philly, LA, and Pitt (especially if they want Malkin).
I can't see Carolina giving up much for Staal until they see if his eye is fully healed & his play is not affected by it.
@MikeBlue if that were the case, the only thing I would accept for Staal... because at worst he will be 95%... is Faulk, Skinner, and their first pick. If they don't give that package I do not trade Staal. Faulk is not that good, and I am not trading Staal for a prospect that could be 2 years away in Hank's prime... sorry not going to happen
@Josh6 Hope its not another Berard type injury. I have been afraid of that since it happened. Whats the long term prognosis? Can u post a link to the story?
@MikeBlue I agree, I think the Rangers would really have to fuck up now to lose Hank. I know we're not where we want to be but all signs from this organization are pointing toward improvement and a commitment to succeed. Henry wants to be a Ranger and I think he understands the process this team is undergoing right now.
@jmacwilli I hear you friend, you're not incorrect but again I think your comments are overstated. It's not like he never hits, takes a hit or crashes the net - we just need more of that from him. His physical play died after about 10 or 15 games into the season which is something I don't understand but lets hope he becomes a monster out there as he's capable of doing. Players fear him, and he's had two 40 goal seasons on a terrible team - neither of those things would have happened. by being a soft perimeter player.
@ThrSage If you're going to judge a guy, learn to spell his name, it's Lundqvist. Who's Lundquist? Is he a backup in Hartford I don't know about? And ''we lost with you, we can lose without you' ... without Hank, we'd lose far more games with the miserable offense and PP of this season.
@ThrSage Wow....love when guys blame Hank for supposedly "not playing well". Do you not realize that if we didn't have Hank on this team we would not have made the playoffs and gone as far we have the last 2 years. Yes occasionally he lets up a soft goal but guess what he is human. Not his fault he plays for a team that goes 3 for 37 on the powerplay n only had 2 games when they scored 5 or more goals the whole season. Hank has every right to be frustrated w/ this team and their lack of offense. He's the goalie and does far and above for his position w/ the effort he puts in....like he said this season he can't score the goals for this team to win. Watch him end up w/ a team like Pittsburgh n see how far he goes and how quick we sink to bottom of the league. hank is the biggest reason this team has been relevant for the last 5 yrs. You're so quick to criticize him but who can you replace him with? You think Biron can fill his shoes? Good luck w/ that!
Hasn't won anything?? Two SEL championships, Olympic gold metal in Turin, 5 vezina nominations, and soon to be 2nd vezina win. The guy has won just about everything he possibly can by himself!!!
Take a breath and chill the f out dude! Media is playing this shit. He only said "We'll see" when asked if there were plans in place to negogiate an extension this summer, and not in the sense that he's not sure he wants to resign like everyone is making it seem. He's not going anywhere.
a lot of potential buyout candidates... Richards extra money could come in handy for a real PP qb, eh?
@Josh6 @MikeBlue Darnell Nurse is 1 of only 3 defensemen projected to have the talent to step into a starting role in the NHL. He is big, athletic, and has a little mean streak in him. I can see him sharing time with Moore on the left side for the third line ( w/ hopefully McIllrath finally on the right ). The second pair... Marc Fistric ( if accquired through FA and Faulk ( puck mover ). Of course the first remains McD and Girardi.
@Josh6 @MikeBlue I would not even consider Skinner in the deal. He would be another small center, who now has a history of a concussion, and here's something you should look at before you start throwing names around... his salary kicks up to $5.75M next year for the next 7 yrs. Carolina is considering trying to trade him just to free up that salary.
Actually now I see what ur saying Skinner has concussion issues as well. Still I would explore what it might take to get him. Having Stepan, Brassard, & Skinner as ur 3-top centers is pretty good. Then u trade Hags & maybe some other prospect for some size at Wing & u have the makings of a Cup winner.
Josh, U wouldn't take Skinner straight up for Staal? IDK I would have to consider that. Getting a potential #-1 center who is in his prime by trading from an area of strength to strength another part of the team. First line centers who are young are hard to come by. That's why Richards was paid so much money. I know Skinner wasn't great the last 2-years but lets face it due to injuries either was Staal. He was great while on the ice but has missed a lot of games & now w-an eye & concussion history u might be looking at a guy who might never reach his potential. Not sure I would make the deal. If I'm Sather I would have to have a long hard talk w-my scouts to see if Skinner was a 1-year wonder or a victim of circumstance. It's a tough call but if his scouts say make the deal & I'm Sather I might make that deal.
@Betweentheworlds @jmacwilli I agree and disagree lol. Yes, he did seem to drive to the net much more at the start of the season. He did seem to seek out those dirty areas. But...one could say that as the season developed the general level of play got tighter and more physical and those areas were more challenged. Plus, the Lucic hit seemed to turn him into a different player. My concern - and I think it is legit - is that he is a slightly different version of Mike Gartner - a point machine when the play is fast and loose, but a disappearing act when it gets tight. That will not cut it in the playoffs (as we saw the NYR made the right call in 94). Still, you could argue that his goals are invaluable in getting there, which i would agree...they are. Still, the unseen cost is how it affects other players when this man child can't muster the courage to play tough when the rink does get smaller. As you have been watching hockey as long as I have you know that this can not be understated. I think we agree more than we disagree and both hope that he can elevate that essential part of his game for both his own good and the team.
Not sure I ever wrote he didn't play well. If I did please show me where. W-that said I wrote in the post u r responding to is that he is PARTLY TO BLAME. All I am saying is what ur saying HE IS NOT PERFECT OR WITHOUT BLAME. Yes genius I do realize we would not have made the playoffs w-out him however my standards are a little higher the yours. Since based on ur post u r probably only about 13 yrs old so let me tell U I was there in 94 & I want another Cup...not a trip to the ECF!!!! Got that Junior?
Now ur so juvenile & simplistic that you assume the choice is between Lundquist & Biron. If Lundquist leaves we can I don't maybe trade sign or draft the next great goalie. Since u r so limited in ur knowledge u do know that Sather has a track record of finding top flight goalies. He once replaced the last irreplaceable Goalie Grant Fuhr I know u have no idea who that is so go look it up, & then won a Cup.
Hank is great & a HOF Goalie what I'm just saying he is not bigger the the organization & should not be treated as if he is. Based on some of the comments here, some people think he should be treated that way...I don't. Now let me say this again & read it slowly so uncomprehending it
I am talking about as a Ranger goalie I could care less how many Gold medsl or Swedish league Championships he won. Vezina's are individual REGULAR season honors.
He has yet to prove he can carry a team to a Cup. Do I think he can? Yes I do but he still has to prove it. Would I give him a 10-year 85-m max contract? Absolutely. All I am saying is like all players he is not perfect so neither he nor we should not pretend he is.
You are mis-reading what I wrote in the comment above. Did u read my posts where I said I believe he is just using his leverage & will eventsully sign w-The Rangers? Apparently not so u can go read them and see that we agree. As for chilling out... irriated is a word used to show that I am not that upset...lol. Hence the wordr irritated not upset or enraged. I was making a general point to those who are saying they are OK w-Hank if he leaves. They shouldn't b cause no player should be less commited then the fans.
If that were the case I buyout brad Richards. Then I trade hank for fleury and Malkin. That would be my move
How's this for a nightmare scenario at least for U anyway. Hank tells Sather I will sign the extension but I want my friend Brad Richards back for at leat one more year so we can go for it next year. Boy would that keep you up at night....LOL. According to this column by Pat Leonard who I have zero respect for he says Hank & Richards r tight & Hank has respect for Richards. He hints at that scenario. So what do you do? Let Hank walk? Bring Richy back?
@ThrSage What the Rangers need is SIZE. Our two biggest guys on the team Nash and Boyle are not very physical. How about this for a first line... Patrik Berglund at center, Rick Nash at right wing and either Bryan Bickle or Dustin Penner at left. All are FAs this year, reasonable contracts, and would give us the biggest line in the NHL.
I meant or said Hank was mediocre in some games not overall. I love the guy think heis great but not perfect . I don't want him to leave or do I want to rebuild. I also don't think it's going to happen. All I am saying is the Rangers do everything they can to sign him & he still leaves then he is not a hero. He also shouldnotbe given a pass & pretend he is blameless the last 2-yrs. This is a team game. If we put Hank above all others the team will crumble.
Love ur passion love ur defense of Hank & someday we will have a meetup, have a beer & cheer on the Rangers!!!!
Most of what I write is tongue in cheek so I don't take it seriously& glad u don't either so OK let's smoke the peace pipe...lol
@ThrSage lol....got such a laugh out of your comment...calm down. WE are all ranger fans and no one is bigger than the organization. Don't be fooled by name.... not as old as you but was watching rangers when Vanbiesbruk was teaching Richter how to play between the pipes. I'm not putting any words in your mouth. maybe you should re=read your own post: "He was mediocre". A goalie who carried the team into the playoffs (again) and played injured (again) was mediocre? Hank has demonstrated that he is one of, if not the best goalie in the league and it would be amazing to seem him retire a ranger as well as hoist the cup for us. Of course hank would say he has to do better but you can't tell me that he would not have benefited from having an offense that could produce. As for Sather, yeah he's signed some great goalie talent but has done a lot of awful deals over the years n if the dolans gave half a shit about the rangers as much as they do the knicks he would have been fired along time ago. I guess the difference between me n you as ranger fans is this: though we are both angry n frustrated about how this team played this season, you have no problem watching Hank leave and going through a rebuilding period for a new goalie where as I would like to see Hank run the same path as Richter and build talen around him. RELAX. Things will get better next season as long as torts can make some changes
Continued......so u understand it....Hank is great he should be offered a max extension however if he doesn't sign it & wants to leave life goes on. We didn't win a Cup w-him so he has yet to prove he can. That is a fact. He has been great in 95% of his playoff starts he has to be better & HE WOULD TELL U THAT!!!!!
So please spare me the juvenile lectures ok junior & next time read what I wrote & don't put words in my mouth!!!!
Jack u r right that is a bad job by me. It's a great movie & as someone who considers himself an aficionado of movie line, I have to do a better job on that. No excuses & I will accept some form of punishment.......now I'm gonna go get my shine box!!!!!!
ThrSage needs to take a chill pill, overall. Is he a fan or superfan-insider-baseball-nerd? If he doesn't get the Lebowski reference he's fired. Didn't brush up on The Big Lebowski during the lockout and is obviously not prepared.
@gravey94 I thought it might be the dude from the big lebowski. Is that what the reference is? Only saw the movie once so I don't remember alot of the lines.
@ThrSage CHILL OUT! CHILL THE FUCK OUT! CHIIIILLLLLLL OOOOUUUTTT!!!!! hahaha... that's pretty ironic, huh? I totally got your point and never thought you were being un-dude (see if you get that reference). Though I disagree on the fan thing. This is just a business and the players treat it as such. I do too though. I see this as my entertainment. Like a movie. If it is good, then I offer my time and money and in turn get entertained. If it is not....then I don't, until it is good again. Love the Rangers...but no WAY do they get my valuable money and time unless they produce entertaining hockey - which to me means playing with passion and discipline.