Before last night's game, Alain Vigneault discussed how he sees the roster playing out for the Rangers (via Daily News)...
“After looking at my makeup of my lines and my different possibilities, there’s probably three or four guys that are fighting for two spots,” Vigneault said. “And it’s pretty easy to say who’s done well. Without getting into (too many) specifics, (Darroll) Powe’s come into camp, and I mean he’s played real well.”
...with the way Powe has played and even more, how AV has fawned all over him, I've got to think he's earned his way onto the team. Unless of course AV is just talking him up in an effort to drum up trade interest. If Powe makes the team, I think it becomes that much less likely that Pyatt and Asham do.
...as far as the young guys go, I think only Miller is a lock. The others, including Kreider, are going to have to sweat this out.
After the game AV discussed whether anyone changed his mind...
To watch at Blueshirts United, click here.
With Derek Stepan signed along with the resurrection of Powe, the Rangers have a bit of a log jam at center. One of the ways AV suggested he deals with that problem is by possibly moving Brad Richards or Derick Brassard to wing.
...listen I'll try anything to jump start Richards, so why not, but no way I'm moving Brassard who will likely be the Rangers #1 or #2 center all season. Also, from what I've heard, he didn't produce when moved to wing in Columbus. Although, he didn't produce at center either, so who knows.
...a positive to moving one of these guys to wing is that it likely opens up a spot for Lindberg, who might otherwise end up down in Hartford because of the numbers game.
AV also touched on how Stepan helps the power play as soon as he steps on the ice...
“One thing that having Derek back that helps us is with the righthanded shot,” he said. “It helps us on penalty killing, for the faceoffs. It helps us on the power play – like having five lefthanders on the power play? It’s not the ideal … If you look at the best power plays in the league, they always have three of one side and two of the other so you can get one touch and one shot.”
...despite the lack of power play goals this preseason, I have noticed better puck and player movement as well as more traffic in front of the net. Now throw Stepan into the mix and the Rangers might actually have a productive power play this season.
AV noted that final cuts will be made on Sunday.
i honestly think everyone needs to relax with all this talk about how bad we are going to be, whose fault is what, and everything negative about this team. We have only seen this team in pre-season, which wasn't our real team, there were many guys on that ice that wont be part of the real team, and even so...there are simply some guys that dont work hard in pre season because they dont want to risk injury for the real deal.
This is the first time this team is working with AV, this is a whole new system and a learning experience for the coaches and players. Lets give these guys some time to adjust.
i hate to admit it but new york fans are so quick to go crazy when times are tough, point out every mistake management makes, and how bad players are. Then when the team bounces back and does well, talk about how good the team is and we are going to win the stanely cup and how good everyone is.
I know its going to be tough...but lets wait until the real team has logged some real games and has had a chance to learn the system being implemented. Rome wasnt built in a day. Cant expect these guys to learn a new system in a pre season with half a team.
The only reason Richards wasn't bought out this summer was Sather covering his ass. He wants to blame last year 100% on the coach. It had nothing to do with the team he built. They weren't too soft. Too slow. They were stanley cup caliber... just bad coaching... HA!
I'm sorry, but any team that complains that their coach is too harsh isn't going to go anywhere when times get rough. How many of us have had a demanding boss? An asshole for a boss? The dumb one's among us might bitch and moan, but the smart one's use it for motivation. But Sather caved because it was in his best interests not to admit his mistake. Now he has a coach that will pander to him and make a small, skill team that will be a trainwreck when any sign of adversity starts to arise....
Rich will stay and picking up a guy like Clarkson, Bickel or Clowe (I know I know, they got paid too much - but would you really take Rich's salary of one of their's right now????) is way out of the question.
90% of you wanted to torch Torts after last season. You got your wish and with him came Vigneault (under Sather's boot). RICH COMES WITH THAT DECISION. If it was a coaching problem it's not the players. That's what you all get. Sorry Torts hurt the guys feelings. Maybe he should have wiped there asses with kleenex after every game. This team is going to cry themselves to a first round exit. The writing is on the wall. And the only thing that would have saved them is a keeping the coach, and getting rid of the REAL problems...
Richards to the press box... he was the worst Ranger in the pre-season (besides Dylan Mcilrath). He and Del Zaster are not going to bounce back. If we are up against the cap we should just get rid of "bad knees" and use Lindberg as a third line center... he is much more capable.
Kreider - Step - Nash
Pouliot - Brass - Zucc
Miller - Ritchie - Boiler
Pylon - Moore - Dorset
I am not a Pyat fan but I am betting he stays up even though he doesn't deserve it.
After Cally returns
Nash - Step - Cally
Pouliot - Brass - Zucc
Miller/Kreider - Ritchie - Boiler
Pylon - Moore - Dorset
Hags - Step - Nash
Pouliot - Brass - Zucc
Kreider/Miller - Ritchie - Cally
Boiler - Moore - Dorset
I think moving Ritchie to wing might actually allow him to produce - he can't keep up speed wise, can't win a face off to save his life and isn't a sniper but with the correct linemates he can still dish. Don't forgery pylon is a coaches favorite and will start regardless of his lack of energy or production. J Moore and staal will be a much more potent second pair than with delzaster but I suspect he will get the first crack to start. I suspect Powe will be the 13th F and bicks the seventh D.
@TheNYRBlog This guy was such a bad hire. If he moves Brassard to the wing, he should be fired immediately.
This Richards thing is rediculos, if he scores a lot this season it's still rediculos, they should have sent him packing when they had the chance. Holding onto that salary is hurting more them helping.
Signed , who's Brad Richards
@TheNYRBlog nothing will jump start Richards.. He's done !!
@TheNYRBlog just bad hockey players
@TheNYRBlog Richie to wing cuz he can't win a draw and is not fast enough to cover all the ice needed.
How about Richards to the press box. What an awful pre-season. Rick Nash insists on trying to skate through two or three guys despite the fact he turns it over much of time. Putting Richards and Nash on the same line is a bad idea considering their defensive shortcomings. John Moore tries to do too much with the puck. He needs to let the game come to him a bit more.
Falk played well, Allen seemed a bit overwhelmed by the speed and intensity. Bickel had his best game other than taking another bad penalty. Gotta love Fast. CT. will be good for him. The play of Powe and an equally rejuvenated Asham may result in Dorsett being cut. Dorsett really isn't that good at anything other than taking way too many penalties. Can't see slow poke Pyatt on this team. Miller was good, but like last year, he gets reckless at times and it results in a scoring chance for the other guys. There is no doubt he will be a good player for many years and does mgmt. want to put up with his growing pains now or send him back for more seasoning? Ditto Lindberg. I think Pouliot is a big plus; certainly an upgrade over Pyatt. He's got obvious talent and perhaps he's finally found the team he's been looking for for the past few years.
The Wolfpack should be good for a change and it will be refreshing not to see Newbury's name at the top of the scoring list as its been for the past few seasons.
Kudos to AV. He stuck with his plan of playing the young guys and he liked what he saw for the most part. All in all I liked this pre-season. The team seems more than willing to play for the coaching staff and I loved their enthusiasm and energy. The team played well until the Mashinter penalty the kids were holding their own with the excellent Kings who had their regular lineup in there. Insert Cally, Steps and Hags and the defense, pk, pp and speed will dramatically increase. I'm looking forward to a great season. I love the fast break concept AV has brought and it's great to see guys going to the net. The defensive shortcomings of the pre-season will sort themselves out b4 too long, I'm confident. LGR
@TheNYRBlog I like Richards to the wing especially if he is centered by brassard, brassard might help him by feeding him the puck.
As far as Kreider, he's actually shown a lot of good things this preseason, although he's had a little inconsistency. He's much better defensively, he's taking more of the body, and he has shown flashes of elite talent. I think what Torts put him through has disappointed our expectations of him (being a goal scoring machine from the 2012 playoffs), but has actually made him a better player - but it's going to take time. Torts himself said, he wanted to strip Kreider down and the rebuild him into a complete player. I think what you're seeing is that process playing out and it's a gradual process. If you ever watched him play for BC, Kreider was all offense, and did not focus much on D cause he didn't need to. BC was one of the best teams in the NCAA when he was playing for them and it was very easy for the team to cover for each other's deficiencies.
Miller, Lindberg, Fast have all shown that they can be good players, but I think their ceiling is lower than Kreider's. When Kreider is good, he's really good, and when he's bad, he's much better than what he used to be when he first came into the league.
So, do you take the guy who's good every day, or do you take a guy who is mediocre some days, but then great other days? i.e. Do you take a Kovalev or a Nemchinov if you had to choose?
And yes. Brad Richards looks exactly the same as last year.
This is how the centers should be in my opinion.
3) Miller- but I would also be fine with Lindbergh and putting Miller on the wing
I think Boyle played better on the wing last year than he did at center. Only place I see Richrds playing center is on the forth line and that would make no sense.
Can't have Miller and Lindberg both up with the current situation at center. Pick one as your 3rd line center.
I'm not a negative type of fan, but I really don't think we will get the Brad Richards we all expected. I don't see anything positive to take from his game in preseason to be optimistic about him.
@TheNYRBlog the question is: how many points will the Rangers risk with Richards in the lineup? Moving Brassard to wing would be disasterous
@PacNYR44 I think New York fans are getting upset with how long the "tough" times last. The Rangers have had ONE cup since the 90s, and before that their last cup occurred when the USA only had 48 states! The other team, the Knick have only two championships. Both of which are long ago. Yet, the Knicks and Rangers are a couple of the oldest teams in their respective leagues, yet have not had much championship success. So yes we want this Rangers team to win and give us all the excitement we crave. We were teased with it recently and now we demand more.
@GiveGartneraCup I liked Torts and I think he will do really well in Vancouver. I always thought that our problem last year was personnel must admit too that the Nash contract could become a real problem down the line with the lower salary cap. He has to produce and also be on a team that doesn't ditch their coach every other season when the team fails to produce.
doesn't look like we're up against the cap anyway ... all the most likely rosters fit within our current cap right now
obviously Richards is going to be playing
All of those scenarios certainly plausible. The lines could be moved around this way and that, but all of those guys could be on the team. Personally, I don't want to see Pyatt -- I realize you're not saying you want him, just that you think he'll stick around -- and that 12th and 13th is a tough call.
@IsMarsReadyYet That may ultimately be true but I'm not ready to say that after six preseason games.
They still have the chance to send him packing. They didn't miss it yet. It was a calculated risk, they'll need the cap space more next year when 10+ starters have exploring contracts, anyway.
@Rpennella40 If they have a poor season, yes it's squarely on the players as they couldn't do it for two different coaching staffs.
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@GregNtsip8 @TheNYRBlog also can't shoot like he used to.
@HockeyChickk27 @TheNYRBlog i dont like Richards on the ice... There wasn't one quality thing I saw from him this preseason... even after all that "conditioning"
@HockeyChickk27 @TheNYRBlog I think Richards needs to be bought out. Just delaying the inevitable.
@HockeyChickk27 I hear you, but Richards has always been a playmaker, not a scorer.
@JBianco Moore is the 4th line center. Once Cally and Hags are back, Powe will battle Boyle for ice time. I'm not a fan of either one unless they are strictly 4th line/pk players.
@JBianco Moore should be the 4th line center... he wins face-offs... put Powe on the wing
@thenyrblogneill If people will criticize Kreider for his inconsistency then no way Lindberg should start the season in the NHL. Hate to say, but they should start the season with Richards as the 3rd line center. He has until both Cally and Hags are back. If he doesn't produce during that time period ... sit him and play one of the kids at center on the 3rd line.
@thenyrblogneill Lindberg and move Miller to the wing... thay had some nice chemistry last night
@thenyrblogneill I like Miller, he is the better player right now.
@jslnyr1102 i think the problem with richards is is that he plays too soft. He is constantly reaching for pucks instead of taking a little body, and its obvious that he gets afraid/anxious to move the puck to someone else when someone is near him. Whether or no that is because he is afraid to mess up idk.
@TheNYRBlog @HockeyChickk27 One thing i actually noticed in the pre season is that Richards used to have such good vision of the ice which made him a great playmaker. I dont know what happened to him but his overall vision of the ice has diminished. There were a few passes he made that make u wonder if he saw the other teams guy right in the passing lane at all...
@TheNYRBlog agreed but hasn't been doing much of either, playmaking or scoring. I just rather move him than mess with Brassard.
@HockeyChickk27 Agreed. Much rather it be Richards than Brassard.