So much for the Rangers playing a fast paced offense under Alain Vigneault as the head coach announced yesterday that Taylor Pyatt has been bumped up to the first line with Brad Richards and Derick Brassard (via Blueshirts United).
...yep, putting a guy with zero points on the first line should definitely help the Rangers struggling offense.
In somewhat encouraging news, JT Miller was practicing on the second line with Derek Stepan and Mats Zuccarello.
...big chance for Miller right here. Was tough for him to make an impact last game skating on the fourth line. Hope he takes advantage of this opportunity.
Here were the bottom six lines...
Benoit Pouliot-Brian Boyle-Derek Dorsett
Darroll Powe-Dominic Moore-Jesper Fast
Meanwhile after practice, Vigneault discussed the possibility of CHris Kreider being recalled (via New York Post)...
“From what [Wolf Pack coach Ken Gernander] said, he’s playing well. He’s using his tools and he’s been playing well since he’s been there. He’s going to continue to improve, and at some point, we’re going to need him and he’s going to be ready for us.”
Kreider has 2g, 1a in four games with the Wolfpack.
...i totally get why Kreider hasn't been recalled yet. He's yet to prove he can be a consistent contributor in the NHL and still has a lot to learn mentally. But man, the Rangers really need his skill level on offense with Nash, Callahan and Hagelin out.
Michael Del Zotto returned to practice Friday after missing Wednesday's game due to the flu.
Vigneault isn't sure if Del Zotto will return to the line-up tonight.
...if it's not broke don't fix it. I say keep Del Zotto out again tonight.
Here's Vigneault's full post practice presser...
Yea. This is not good. And Miller is on the 3rd line. AV is smoking crack. Miller or Kreider have more skill on their taints than Pyatt does in his entire body. And I don't dislike Pyatt but he is a 3rd or 4th liner at best.
So obvious that Fast and Pyatt should switch places. WIth the injuries, this should be Fast's shot to prove himself, and for the brass to assess what they have in him. If he's just going to get 4th line minutes, what's the point.
And if Fast has a big game, it will be a shot of adrenalin through the entire lineup. Pyatt can't provide that, even when he chips in a goal or two.
Pyatt WILL score tonight
Hope JT Miller plays like a maniac tonight. Top six chances don't happen everyday, this is an opportunity for sure for him. Krieder-glad he is playing well I hope stays in AHL until he consistently scores game after game after game-hope they don't bring him up too soon again. Pyatt will be on the boards and in front of the net-so we'll see if he can knock one in, cause the puck is going to be on the net with Brass and Ritchie on the same line.
Perhaps we should just make pyatt the coach or better yet lets make him president and gm we could retire his # and lobby to have the stanley cup be called the pyatt cup
Huge game tonight against the devils and I'm worried looking at these lines. Nj is gonna try to push us around like everyone else and we need to respond
Wow, when you see the names of those 4 lines, no wonder we are in trouble right now. With the exception of Richards, there is absolutely no face to this team whatsoever right now due to the injuries. Even with an injury-free roster right now.... meh....
I see a soft team unwilling (and largely unable) to stand up for teammates.
I see a proven offensive system being used on a team largely incapable of supplying the required offense to make it work.
I see a great group of defensive defensemen being asked to be offensive defensemen to make the system work-- it isn't.
I see yet another season where do not have a hard shooting defenseman.... hell even a hard shooting forward. And then wonder why we have a poor PP. Montreal figured this out 50 years ago and always employs multiple hard shooters.
I see a repeat of last year's placing in the standings. No more, no less. Ditto for the post season.
I see a goaltender watching the highlights reels of other clubs, trying to decide where he should play in February after the blockbuster rebuilding trade that will happen.
I hope I'm wrong on all of these points, but I just don't have a good feeling about things going forward.
I hope AV see something that we don't because based on current opportunities pylon is a waste. I would let delzaster sit for obvious reasons.
I am intrigued by the second line - I think Zucc and JT have an awesome chance to step up (pun intended) and really strut their stuff. I would think they have the best chance of being the hot line tonight!
My guess is that AV wants a big body up there but damn. There's really no reason not to bring Kreider up now as he'd get top 9 minutes. Also as long as Richy and Lead Foot can be used on wing maybe its time to give Lindberg a look? I like his game, skill with some grit. So far AV's line combos have been illogical. Hope it's just a feeling out period
Kreider had an assist last night but took a penalty to kill a late PP chance and he didn't really play well in front of the top Ranger brass last night
Just saw that....can't believe that after last season and getting beat by the bruins 3rd and 4th lines that we didn't do more to add depth to this team. Pyatt on the first line cause we are missing cally and Nash means we have NO depth. I'd rather glen pay for my bus ticket to the rock tonight and I will suit up over Pyatt.
There is absolutely no way Pylon should even sniff first line minutes. Don't understand AV here at all.
why is there so much emphasis on the other kids playing top minutes with the Pack, but less so with Fast? i mean if dorsett is gunna be on the third line anyway and Fast is only gunna play 8 minutes per game, why not have haley play that 4th line wing?
What's this? A positive upbeat comment from someone on this blog?? Pretty sure I just looked out my window and saw a pig flying with angel wings
@Trade DelZotto+Girardi4E.Kane we could move him to the first line w/ pyatt
@NYR44 Who's Brad Richards ? perhaps Pyatt for president? lol
@DragonFire IDK - that sounds like a pretty fair assessment to me on all accounts. Changes have to happen or it will be a lackluster season
They want a big guy on there. What's wrong with that? Once they enter the zone Pyatt goes to the net and he's good along the boards.
@Easy_Kreider Fast should really be in the AHL in my opinion. I think he looks a little over-matched.
@Centerman21 I agree with you. There seems to be a lot of hate for Pyatt around here. He's a big dude, something this team sorely lacks. I think he's been involved in putting some good pressure in the offensive zone, and though he lacks speed (and points for now), I'm curious to see what he brings to the top line with more minutes.
Re Fast, he's even been on a line with that offensive dynamo Pyatt and he still can't score. Nevermind Hartford, send Fast to Charlotte
We can't just write it off right before he has had a chance. A big guy like him could be just what this team needs. Have to see a few shifts before calling it a disaster.
exactly how many minutes do you want him to get? Right now he is 5th most minutes per game among Ranger forwards with over 15 minutes per game and 0 points and -6 to show for it. Yeah there's a lot of hate , and though he's 6'4 230, more often he seems 5'4 130.