A day after pulling himself from the Game 4 line-up, Andrew Gross at the Bergen Record reports that Marc Staal did not participate in the Rangers optional practice today making his status very much in doubt for tomorrow's Game 5.
Gross adds that John Tortorella was not happy to hear Ryan McDonagh discussed Marc Staal's reasoning for not playing last night.
...i find it very hard to believe he'll be back in the line-up tomorrow.
...also, with him not even able to skate during an optional, i'm very concerned that he might have suffered a significant setback.
...was very surprised that McD talked Staal's injury last night. Assuming after Torts gets a hold of him we'll never hear it discussed again.
According to Pat Leonard at the Daily News Ryane Clowe skated today.
...always nice to see a guy practice the day after returning from an injury. Usually a good sign that there's no setbacks.
...thought Clowe brought a physical element that had been lacking from the Rangers the first three games. I think it helped rally this team to easily their best performance of the playoffs.
Meanwhile, Steve Zipay at Newsday reports that Chris Kreider and Kris Newbury skated with the team today and will likely travel to Washington for tomorrow's game.
Darroll Powe (likely concussion) also did not skate.
...doubt we're going to see Powe for at least the rest of the series.
really off topic but...i updated the online rosters for nhl 13, and sauer and hamrlik are the third defensive pairing...wtf?!?!
I'm curious to see what Washington does on their powerplay next game. You have to assume Oates is going to change things up after last game. Clearly Ribeiro quarterbacking from the sideboards is not working, and I think Torts deserves credit for that adjustment.
Ovi was basically taken out of the equation on the powerplay and Mike Green was having trouble getting pucks around Boyle. I think they'll start trying to start the puck with Ovi, bring someone into the crease, and have Ribeiro and Green moving around trying to create space.
I loved what the Rangers did on the kill the past two games, but they are going to have to be ready for an adjustment by the Caps in game five. A good coach, which I think Oates is, won't let his best player be taken out of the equation on a man advantage.
Also, maybe I'm oversimplifying it, but does Ovi just suck at the Garden? It's like all the taunting and jeering gets to him and he floats around the ice all game. Step's goal is exhibit A, and I love that Gif of the play.
I don't think with his type of injury he can have a setback. Supposedly the problem was just that he didn't feel comfortable with where his vision was at once he got into a game and everything was real speed. I guess they figured what's the point in continuing to practice until his vision improves.
Boggles my mind as to why Pyatt is in the lineup and Kreider is scratched... The big guy is invisible ou there (except for his knockdown of Holtby's pass) He just glides around and brings nothing to the tabel.
We were physical in game 1 too, outhitting them and outplayed them in every aspect of the game except the score. I think that has been overlooked because we lost the game - then in game 2 the physical play was relatively absent. either way you slice it having clowe in the lineup is a big lift.
I loved Clowe going up to Olesky after the first scrum in front of the net and manhandling him into the boards. Guarantee he asked, "you wanna go?" And Olesky backed off like a scared puppy. He looked more cautious with his hits and paranoid with the puck the rest of the night. I think Clowe's intensity and strength scared that b'otch.
I was not a fan of Staal suiting up in the first place, I think the organization put his career in jeopardy rushing it. Don't get me wrong I love Staal and I want him back as much as the next but he's clearly not ready, and that hit he took looked really bad. Any chance he's concussed?? Really hope he's alright
@danblackburn Very astute; and Oates is a very good coach (whom I'd love to see in blue) who's probably tearing Ovi a new asshole as we speak. It's nice for a change that the other team has to make adjustments to us
I guess this topic struck a nerve HA.. everyone has their own opinions on how they like to see the game play.. I honesty don't care who is in the line-up as long as we win
Kreider looks invisble when he plays. The only thing he is good for is his speed and shot. Nevertheless, we need a guy on the third line with intangibles and a good hockey IQ. Pyatt has actually played well in the series and it would be a big mistake to scratch him.
Ur talking one hit (which wasn't even a hit Ovi just ran into him) and one knocked down pass.. Is that deserving of playing time, he is a slow, soft big man un-needed.. can't tell me u would rather have a 3rd line of Brassard, Boyle, Pyatt than Brass, Boyle and Kreider.,or have his speed on the 4th line... Get real guys.
@nick13 He had a hard hit on Ovechkin as well but I get your point.
@nick13 Pyatt's actually done well this series.
@nick13 I believe that's the point, He does the work nobody notices, but every team needs. He's doing work along the boards that doesn't always lead to glory but wears down opposing teams into making mistakes. Everyone can't be a scorer, we need muckers too.
@nick13 He had a nice hit on Ovi too.
@GiveGartneraCup I suspect the message was more like "you know you don't want to go so stop pretending you're a tough guy"
@Iron Mike Hard to blame the organization. If he said he can go and his vision was good enough, then so be it. It's up to him to tell them he can or can't go. I think he would err on the side of caution given his concussion and this injury, so my bet is he felt good in practice, but wasn't ready for a playoff atmosphere with ratcheted intensity.
@Iron Mike Agreed - very surprised by that move
@Josh6 Your right we do need him. Caps have exploited MDZ & eminger in this series. The puck possesion in our own zone would be alot less if we had staal.
@shishya100 Probably the first time "subtle" and "Clowe" have ever been used in the same sentence...LOL!
@Betweentheworlds @danblackburnIt amazes me he didn't make any adjustments after the first Caps powerplay. I was jumping with joy when I saw Washington consistently going to Ribiero with Ovi frozen on the opposite side possession after possession. I'd love to see more of it, but you couldn't watch that game tape and not realize the Rangers have that look figured out.
@nick13 True, but if they dont win then you need to look at decisions that were made. Been looking at this now for a very long time and it is rare that the rangers take the physical play or at least the overall flow of the game to the other team. They did this in the early nineties (before they won the cup) and and for long periods of time did this last year.(not in the playoffs so much though) .but it is few and far between and you can have only so many soft players.
@nick13 agree. Every team needs a few muckers but they must hit consistently or kill penalties or fight and throw in maybe a few points. He seems to just glide around and does not overly exert himself to come up with pucks in the corners or if he does he does not make too many + things happen with it. If you are going to muck then take notice of guys like Callahan and even Hagelin, who are way beyond muckers but do dirty work and come up with pucks in addition to having overall good skills.
Without saying the words "last year"....tell me why Kreider should be in the line-up?
He scored two goals while up with the big club. He also did nothing with the Whale when he was with them.
Kreider plays small for his size. He is also weak on the boards, and weak on the puck. And let's not forget, can be a defensive liability.
Pyatt is mucker...strong on the boards. He does his job well.
@gravey94 @Iron Mike This is a good point Gravey, the last thing the org would want is to jeopardize the long term health of their best defenseman. It could be that Staal was a bit overzealous, or (what I'm hoping) he went in feeling fine but had a minor, unrelated injury on the hit and will be back by next series if we win
Tortorella needs to trust his bench more & stop treating Eminger like a child. He made one mistake (which was looked no worse than Del Zotto on that play ) and paid for it with ice time,. The bullshit has to stop - I think Eminger has played pretty well this series.
@McPhee37 @nick13 Sorry, Disagree about the board work. Yes he does not make "mistakes" but he does not do much if he comes up with the puck. For a player his size he needs to do more. He comes away with a lot fewer pucks than the smaller players like callahan and hagelin for instance. At some point you also need to put some points on the board. He also plays soft, but he is not alone in that regard. I think he plays because other players may be viewed as defensive liabilities and are not worth their potential point scoring ability.
@McPhee37 @nick13 Got to agree with George again. I would rather see Pyatt than Kreids out there right now. I don't disagree with you in principle Nick, and I'm actually a fan of the speed game but we need his consistency and board work right now rather than a speedy minor leaguer. Not sure Pyatt's the slowest guy on the team though. Would love sit down and watch Pyatt and Boyle race, but my only concern with that is that I'm not a young man lol
You seem to think boardwork is doing nothing on the ice...I disagree.
You want to talk about watching a guy doing nothing on the ice...watch Kreider's game. Does he throw the body consistently....no. Can he work the boards? No. Can he set others up? No. Does he crash the net or cause havoc in front of the net? No. Can he bring some kind of physicality to the game...like Clowe does? No. (And just a reminder..Kreider is bigger than Clowe)
Does Kreider a defensive liability at times? Yes.
At least Pyatt brings boardwork to the game...and it's not "potential" boardwork...Pyatt plays well on the boards. Period. He does his job.
When I see Pyatt on the ice....I know he's going to work hard and win battles on the boards....and he'll be in position defensively.
I'm not even a huge Pyatt fan....but I'll take his solid boardwork play over Kreider"s speed and "potential".
Kreider has done nothing this year with us or the Whale. He had 23 games with us to turn potential scoring into proven scoring...didn't get it done.
Tortorella said it best about Kreider when he got sent down earlier in the year. "Kreider has a lot to learn about being a professional." Pyatt's been in the NHL for over 11 years. Pyatt's a professional.
What has been our problem all yr? scoring goals right.. granted we have done that well the last 2 games. But i watch this team play and pyatt brings 0 to the table. U say he is a mucker true but he is the slowest person on the ice and doesn't really hit unless ppl run into him. Yes he doesn't make mistakes but there's a point where we need another guy to do what Hags does and disrupt the play with their speed. You look at teams like the penguins and almost all the teams in the west they would skate circles around guys like Pyatt, asham (granted i like asham and he is much needed)
I'm not saying Pyatt isnt a decent player.. for me he just bring nothing to the table.
When I see him on the ice i don't think nice Pyatts out there something good might happen.
I guess it comes down to do you want the potential for great things to happen or do you want a guy gliding around doing a bunch of nothing on the ice.
@McPhee37 @nick13 Nick - I'm usually first one to get on Torts and question his judgments, and I believe I have good reason but when it comes to his players ice time (reactionary short-sighted benchings withstanding) he's proven to be very good so I never questioned his choices of keeping Pyatt in the mix. I find him to be neither good, nor bad but consistent with few errors. The type of steady player Torts likes. He quietly does his job, help wears out the opposition and helps create opportunities for the scorers which is why Torts sometimes uses him on scoring lines. There are subtleties in this game that we don't always see and I'm quite certain that using Pyatt has been the right call. I'm sure if they were not scoring and down 3-1 they would gamble on bring Kreider in the lineup but they need muckers right now because Ovi's going to be recharged, especially after the embarrasment of the Step goal and with the momentum change and home crowd behind them the Caps are going to come at us hard and often. For the record Krieder did provide a spark and may have save the series last year but as the adrenaline wore down he looked very much like a minor leaguer out there in last years playoffs. He'll be a good player and has improved this year but he' not there yet IMHO
@DPSnotty @ThrSage @Josh6Well said. Torts has to give these guys a chance to play because exhausted starters aren't going to hold up through the playoffs. Eminger is a solid defenseman, but as all defensmen do, he's going to make the wrong read here and there. It's just unfortunate that he had to make the wrong read on the same play Del Zotto decided to "revolutionize" 2 on 1 coverage.
On top of Del Zotto deserving flack on the play that put Eminger on the pine, Richards should hear about it. Del Zotto gets beat, but he gets beat leaving Ward with no angle and a relatively easy save for Henrik. If Richards does what Del Zotto called for him to do and stays on Perrault, there's probably not a goal there.
Overall, it was a mental lapse by the Rangers and Torts decided someone needed to be punished. Unfortunately, decisions like that hurts the whole team as everyone else has to eat Eminger's minutes.