Before last night's game, Benoit Pouliot said he wanted to make a good first impression in his first action as a Blueshirt. And then he went out and did this...
Here's Alain Vigneault on Pouliot (via New York Post)...
“I told [Pouliot] when we were skating around the ice this morning that I like the way he has used his speed and size in camp, going to the net and making plays. I want him to do that."
...scoring the game winning goal is always a good way to make a first impression. BTW, what a sweet pass from Brassard.
...as a former #4 overall pick, Pouliot obviously has all the talent in the world. And while he hasn't been a complete bust (averaging about 15 goals per year), he also hasn't lived up the expectations of a high first rounder.
...but sometimes a player just needs the perfect situation, with the perfect coach who implements the perfect system. And hopefully the Rangers and AV are it for Pouliot.
...similar to Brassard (another first round pick who didn't live up to expectations) last year, there's absolutely no pressure on Pouliot with the Rangers. He's going to be counted on as a third line player, who needs to give them solid minutes and the occasional offense. Which should allow him to relax, play his gave and hopefully rediscover the scoring touch that made him a 35-goal scorer in the OHL.
Pouliot signed a one-year, $1.3 million contract with the Rangers in July.
Watching live you kind of assumed the goalie was in that cluster-f and Pouliot had an empty net, but the replay makes it that much more impressive, the goalie was in good position and could have made a save, Pouliot beat him fair and square.
1. If Pouliot stays with Brassard (who seems to be the best playmaker on the team) he will have 20 goals this year. in fact that entire line from last night looked very solid, and all three are primed to break out.
2. A lot of people are focusing on Mcdonagh, Girardi, Staal and DZ, but look for Stralman to have a career year, and earn a new contract next season to stick around... at least more so than Del Zaster. He will get a shot at QBing the second unit of the PP and he wont disappoint. Also playing with John Moore would be a great pairing for the Rangers
3. Micahel Del Zotto will be Michael Del Zaster... A lot of people think AV is the answer, I still think he is the same turnover machine he has always been, and nothing will change. If Allen keeps playing the way he did last night, he could be the 7th defenseman on the team and maybe in their bottom pairing if they end up moving DZ at the deadline.
4. Regardless of the year Richards has, good or bad, he is gone next year. There is no way the Rangers can keep that salary with all the players they need to resign, and maybe they can use some extra money to go after the Sedins.... LOL!
@calithirteen Never. I don't even re-read what I write before posting it.
Stralman had a career last year and just keeps coming on ... each year better than the last
Del Zotto is not a turnover machine. Not anymore. You just say that because its the safe assessment. Everyone says that because its a stereotype that followed him. Frankly it holds no weight anymore. He try's those Hail Mary passes still sometimes and they get picked off at times but that doesn't make him a turnover machine. Watch the game. He lost his confidence and is trying to work at getting it back but moroons like you just keep on riffing on him. You're not a NYR fan. By bringing down a player you're putting the team down. He's gonna have a season like 11/12. He got more mins last season playing 23:10 avg TOI against much tougher competition. He might be the grittiest defenseman on the blue line. The Rangers put a ton of time into him and with Samuelsson Coaching the D, he's gonna have a monster season. Ulf took a young late draft pick in Phoenix and turned him into a beast. That kid turned out to be Yandle. He didnt have 1/2 the talent DZ has. All he has to do is stop trying those long passes. That's no big deal. You don't know what you're talking about. Sorry but you're wrong about DZ.
Brassard is the best playmaker on the team? He's a nice player and a kid I like a lot. Should be our 2nd pivot in 14/15 but what about Stepan? How about Nash? I would say those 2 are the best playmakers on the team. The best 2 skaters. Nice predictions tho. Especially the one about Richie. Was that on a fortune cookie captain obvious? What NY Ranger fan does not know that? Maybe it was you!
@FREE LINDBERG Really beating that Sedins drum aren't you. lol
@jazzgirl1414 Lots of chemistry and playmaking ability. Definitely a keeper.
@Centerman21 so by your line of thinking, as a ranger fan I can never criticize any player or coach? Del zotto has been a disaster and I give credit to Sather for giving him n Richards a second chance but I can't watch Del Zotto give up another turnover and be out of position while Hank is getting screened by his man.
@Centerman21 Playmaker... not goalscorer (Nash). As for Stepan, as of now he is not on the team, and again I even see Stepan as more of a goal scorer. Brassard is more of a natural passer in my opinion.
As for DZ, I don't know what you were watching last year but it wasnt just long passes... It was horrible pinches, and terrible play in the d-zone. I don't see that changing, and see him as the weak link in our otherwise strong d-corps.
@KevinDeLury @FREE LINDBERG I read such a great article yesterday. Torts already said "the Sedins are going to have to block shots". What I am hoping is that they hate him so much that they just want to play together somewhere else, and want to go back to AV's system, so they come here at a discount maybe 4.5 each.... HAHAHAHA
No one wants DZ to succeed more than the people here bud, but stating the obvious shouldn't be condemned. Put the stats away for both years as they are often so meaningless. There is not a single educated hockey analyst, or watcher out there that would say DZ was not a mess. Short season is not an excuse for the absolute blunders he made out there. And grit? He sure as hell never cleared the crease in ANY game I watched.
The coach put him in tough situations (you mean like on the ice? Saying that he was playing against stiff competition is a joke. First, he rarely played against the other team's best, but second....it is the NHL!!!....your performance is not graded on the curve!!!! It IS what it IS! Yeah...I would have been a star in the NHL as a goalie if only Ovechkin, Crosby, Kane, Stamkos and the rest of those pesky players weren't playing....lol)
It was a short season (so what, it was the same for everyone. Everyone played up to their expected level. It is different for DZ?)
He lost his confidence ( best one yet. Who gives a crap WHAT is behind his play...his play STUNK. Given his play, saying that he WILL be better is MUCH more unfounded than saying that he WILL stink)
No one is rooting against this cat. They just don't have high hopes and DZ has not given them reason to have them. No one is trying to offend you.
It was one short season. The year before he was great. Let it go! He needs a full camp and to regain his confidence. His Quality of competition went up along with his mins. That made his job much tougher. Torts put him in a lot of tough spots. He is a good 2 way defenseman. He was +20 with 41 points. That's the DZ we will see. He was injured all last season and that's what happens when there's a one week camp. Guys get hurt. DZ is no different. He is probably the closest thing we have to some grit on the back end. Very competative and as bad as last year was his mins went up and he was still +6 with top 4 QoC. 23:10 of Two way mins. Moore and Strahlman got the sheltered mins against easier competition. Look at the advanced stats. They support my argument.
How is there room on this team for the both of them? Why would you want them anyway? They can't play defense at all and might be 2 of the softest players in the NHL. In the playoffs a tough defenseman can pound on them and remove both of them from the entire series. Both of the are Daisy pickers. They skate around in the neutral zone until the play comes out. That doesn't win a cup. Defense wins championships and they'll never win the cup as long as they're the focal point of the Canucks.