The New York Rangers (31-23-3) defeated the Colorado Avalanche (36-15-5) by the score of 5-1, tonight. For a box score, go to Yahoo! Sports.
...any chance the Rangers can have three days off before every game? Most jump the Rangers have had all season as they completely dominated a damn good Western Conference team from start to finish. It helps that Colorado was playing their third game in four nights, but the Rangers were the hungrier team as they were the first to every puck and won every one-on-one battle.
...here's exclusive video footage of Callahan talking to his agent immediately after the game courtesy of reader AnnoyingJoe...
...in all seriousness, I have no idea if one game can sway contract negotiations, but Callahan pretty much provided a clinic of what he's capable of. Awesome to watch.
...absolutely loved Richards getting pissed off at Callahan for setting him up for the goal late, because he wanted the Captain to get the hat trick. Callahan's teammates love him. Would hate to see what happens to team morale if he's shipped out.
...even when the Rangers power play is struggling the way it is now, it's still 1000x better than it was under Tortorella.
...speaking of special teams, how special was that 5-on-3 penalty kill to end the second period. Could have been a much different third period if Colorado gets one there.
...and the biggest reason for that kill was Lundqvist, who wasn't tested often, but when he was, damn was he good.
...if the Rangers are interested in Ryan O'Reilly it wasn't a very good audition for him as he ended the game pointless with a -5.
...Hagelin has had an inconsistent season, but when he uses his speed the way he did tonight, he's a huge weapon.
...eight goals against in the five games since the acquisition of Klein. Also great to see Klein take Moore under his wing, as during the telecast Micheletti commented that the veteran defenseman is constantly talking the youngster on the ice.
...also impressed with AV's confidence in the lineup as every player had double digit ice time tonight.
...as Adam pointed out on Twitter tonight, that was the sixth straight Brassard goal that Zuccarello has assisted on. Can you say chemistry?
...the best part about this team right now is that it's a different group of players stepping up every night. They're not just dependent on one line or one player. If they can continue to play as a unit instead of a group of individuals, the sky is the limit for this team. Unless of course they trade Callahan.
...off tomorrow then the Oilers are in town on Thursday.
Post game talk...
To all "The Hockey Dads and Daughters" out there. Most will recognize the player in the vid.
I think Richards holds onto the puck too long on the pp looking to shoot when he should be moving itt around and sometimes he loses the puck to a checker because of that . Zucc is a better quarterback and passer than Richards.
I give credit to any player who stands in front of the net and scores" garbage goals" and takes a beating..back in the day when Vickers scored from his "office" as Jim Gordon used to call it nothing was called and you really took a beating to score in close and many players wouldn't do it.
Just to echo Johnny B's post below, Richards gets too much abuse. Is he wildly overpaid given his complete game? Yes. But that will likely be remedied this off season. Until then he offers not only good work on the power play but given room and time he can and does score. Are the goals pretty? Rarely, but they all count. In the late seventies the Rangers had a goal collector named Steve Vickers. Ugliest goals ever....but at the end of the day you need guys who score. Richards is now a specialist, not the complete player he once was. Still, at least for now you need what he specializes in so just enjoy him despite the fact that you are overpaying for him. It is Sather's job to let him go after the season and with that money find a way to replace the goals while also adding the other components that now elude Richards. (note - that doesn't mean it has to come in one player)
Interestingly the Rangers usually do not play well after a 3+ days of rest and I'm willing to bet over the last couple seasons that their record is better for the 2nd half of back to backs than it is for 1st game after a break. More signs that they are becoming a more complete team. Figures Cally would step it up. It would be nice if they can work something out fair to all parties. I can't take the press verbatim and have a hard time believing he would hold out on the Rangers for 7M. I think it may be more the length of contract than the money, especially if that 6M offer figure is correct. As I eluded to the other day he may be considering a roll with Buffalo as a centerpiece of a rebuilding franchise, which happens to be near his home town. Being such a competitive guy you'd think winning the cup would be his priority but this would be a challenge he might be considering as he could have a bigger roll, maintain his captaincy, make a bit more money and who knows, with all the draft picks Buffalo should be competitive in 3-5 years. Time will tell..
Larry Brooks remarked in The NY Post that why should Cally back off his demands after seeing Slats throwing BIG bucks & draft picks) at Foreigners like Redden,Gomez, ,Drury and Richards,Nash not to mention Holik to get them here and now he won't spring to keep one our own here.And lets face it they could have saved a ton buying Richards out after a crap season....he had faith in Richards, show Cally the same respect.
You could say a lot of good things about different players last night but the one thing that I have really enjoyed most has been AV's decision and confidence in keeping his lines together. I think you can just see no matter what line is out there these guys are really developing a great feel what other guys is doing.
I want to thank the coach for eliminating years of line shuffling TORTure from my memory.
its hilarious looking at cali vs nash, same games 24 to 27 points and we are running him out of town. i mean thats glaring folks . arguably there should be more nash buyout talk then trade cali talk if we are really analyzing performance. add in the fact cali plays the pk pp and throws mad hits and its a no brainer. id trade nash right back to columbus and wed be right back into the semi's.
Why don't we just try and negotiate with Cally in the offseason? It would be the same thing as if we had traded for a loaner at the deadline for a playoff push. I know we might be leaving value on the table if he ends up leaving, but I bet he'd realize no one is giving him 7yrs @ 6M.
As much as I love Callahan, one game doesn't make his demands realistic. One of two things will need to happen: he signs for less than he currently wants, or we need to sign him and trade him to Buffalo for Moulson and a pick.
They are going to find a way to keep cally. He is too important to this team and they are going to well right now to break it up. Also Melrose is one of the worst in the biz. He's a joke. And lets cut the this is a business decision and we need to look at it like a business. Sather and Dolan have been doing that for a long time, doing anything and everything to sign aging superstars. What cally brings to this specific team is not replaceable. He's grown into a captain team and has instant respect from every teammate. If we can win one before the inevitable 6 year contract is up I don't care. One cup is worth paying an old man too much.
@TheNYRBlog YES to every point you made in this one...
@TheNYRBlog I think they just need to play football at practice more often.
1. Great first period. I don't think I've applauded like that after a period since my girlfriend's and my near miss in college.2. Agree with Melrose who says the Rangers need a bit more size to get through Boston & Pitt.3. As for Cally....the only numbers that matter are 5'10" 175" combined with how he plays when effective. From my post yesterday:
The prudent GM's only give long term, big money contracts to players near 30 IF THEIR PRIMARY CONTRIBUTING ATTRIBUTE IS LIKELY TO AGE WELL!! A 6'1" 210 lb board-working menace who has no concussions....SIGN HIM. A quick, small, speedy, sniper that is elusive and stays clean from the bangers....SIGN HIM! But a 5'10" 175lb grinder who if he can't play in the tough areas offers almost nothing, and who has a history of injry already?? No brainer. Does ANYONE here actually think that Cally's unique set of attributes, the ones that make us love him so much, can possibly age WELL??? He has barely (if at all) been able to sustain them TO DATE! Take the jersey off and look at it as a businessman...
First…Big big game Friday! Are the Rangers ready to prove they are at the next level? Yea I know; I don’t care if we look past the Oilers.
Second…Mr. Sather please let the Callahan contract play out until the summer. There is nothing to be gained at this point by moving him and maybe he proves he deserves the time and the money.
Barry melrose was asked if Rangers were for reaql and a stanley cup contender. He said NO that we cant beat pitt and boston. We need some more size and if Cally can bring that I am sorry but Im a Ranger fan not a cally fan (I am a fan of him)
Yessir. I was a young kid, but remember Vickers, Vadnais, Espo, Ulf (Potvin Sucks) Nilson, Andres Hedberg very well. Vickers didn't have the flash of the other guys but he could put the rubber in the net.
People can crap on Richards all they want, but like you said, the ugly one's count, too (in hockey, atleast). His 41 points is best on the team (tied with Zucc), 53rd best in the league in the same neighborhood as guys like Eric Staal, TJ Oshie, and Jason Spezza. He's on pace for 60 points, similar to the numbers he put up in 2011-2012, and he's QB'ing both units, back-to-back, of a PP like we haven't seen in almost a decade here. Sure, we could probably get a little more out of $6.66 Mil/season, but you'd think we were getting a hell of a lot less the way some people throw him under the bus around here.
I thought the consensus was that we all love Cally, but the reported (and I emphasize reported) ask from his agent was beyond the bounds of reasonable.
@danblackburn That would seem like the smart thing to do
Lindberg IS free. I don't understand.
He's been on fire recently, now has 6G 5A in his last 7 games, and 8G 10A over his last seventeen, hope he gets a legit chance out of camp next season, seems like he took half a year to get comfortable in North America and now he's flying.
@upstate tom Shame we'll lose him to Carolina during the off season.
and he played like that with what, like 90 mins of sleep?
@mattyjets 5 Years 5.5 mills' per year would be my best offer. It is a very generous offer for a third line winger.
Considering our current 0-for-13 or whatever streak we're at, and the fact that AV kept throwing Cally out there near the end of the 3rd to go for the Hat Trick, I was expecting to see Cally out on the PP last night at some point, and wouldn't be surprised if a minor shake-up were put into place in the next game. But obviusly you can see the strategy right now is the keep the chemistry of the first two lines together on the PP.
PS. This is why players the love AV. They all knew he was trying get Cally the Hat Trick, just like how he let Carcillo start the game in Chicago. He's fun to play for, he understands his team, and he knows how to loosen things up a bit.
@Say my Name if you look at callahans numbers, it is fair to say that under an offensive style and a full season he can score 35 goals. thats very fair. so why are we deeming him so invaluable when we can't score for shit?
good points but i think your assuming he will break down soon. theres no sign of that. his injuries are freak, not old man like. i don't think any professional athletes age well barring maybe baseball? its a physical game of course he will slow down. but i think people are underestimating his skill. minus nash and kreider who hasn't done it yet, who on this team can score 25 goals? stepan once? cali been on pace for at least 25 4 years going now. on pace for 30 3 years in a row, this year will end up with plus 20 and was a miserable injury year.
@Say my Name Great post again. Did you read Brooksie? Cally has 1 good game in maybe a month and he's crying for the organization not to trade him.
Thursday is the definition of a trap game
I agree that on paper the Rangers are not the best team in the east, but there's a reason 16 teams make the post season. They don't hand the Stanley Cup to the best team on paper. LA won as an 8th seed, so you don't need to be the best, you just need to be able to go toe-to-toe in a 7 game series with whoever is standing in your way.
We didn't stand a chance against Boston going in to last years series, and everyone knew it going in, but I think this years team would stand a much better chance in a 7 game series. We won't be out of gas by the 2nd round of the playoffs. The way AV is rolling 4 lines and we're getting secondary scoring, this teams primary goal should just be to get thru the first round in 6 games or less.
Bottom line though, if this team were one simple trade away from becoming the best team in the east, it would have already happened. And loaning out our Captain to another contender for a piece they're willing to part with is not going to return what we need to make that jump. I think @KreiderisTheChosenOne is right that we need an upgrade at 1st line center, but unfortunately with Thorton signing his extension, Statsny is the only desirable UFA left at the moment, and a trade for a guy of the caliber we need would deplete the rest of our team too much. I think we just have to accept that hopefully AV can take this team from being a perenial 7,8,9 seed to a perenial 3,4,5 and then just hope we can do damage in the playoffs.
Honestly Melrose is one of the dumbest analysts in the sport of hockey... Just look at his track record (coaching with the Lightning was a joke and he said Stamkos would never make it in the NHL lollllll). Every team needs size, but I honestly think the Rangers are a true 1st line center away from being a contender. If they had a Crosby, Thorton, Toews, Getzlaf or someone of equal or a little less caliber they would be a force. Down the middle is easily the weakest part of the team.
i thought so too but reading peoples comments that wasn't so. part of what I'm saying too is there was an overreaction even if his contract demands ARE true. he is worth north of 5.5 and if you add a little captain money and a little homegrown money you get about 6.2 which is what he will sign for
callahan is our best in front of the net garbage guy. 15 goals a year from around the crease i have no idea why av took him off., i can understand the pooly zuc brass line but he needs to be out there over either stepan or kreider or richards. enough with rich playing full 2 on the pp. its dumb, your wearing him out and he's really not that dynamic
I DO agree that Cally's offensive skill is underrated. I also agree that were he in the top 6 that he could put up better numbers. Look, I'm not trying to run him out of town. I love the way he plays. LOVE. I just think the market price for him is not a good fit for the Rangers. If he was 4 years at 22 million I'd sign him tomorrow. But....he will get more than that. I also think the Rangers could use more size at wing. So,...if you're going to lose him you might as well get something back for him - and it may be good, after all, Cally is a REALLY GOOD player.
Some times I wonder if Larry is like Two Face, rather than letting his opinions and stances on issues flow, he flips a coin and just goes with whatever. The guy has clearly been the biggest proponent of this whole trade frenzy, he's been writing for weeks about how Sather needs to think about the future, how he owes it to the organization to try to get something in return, and is probably the first one to ask about Cally in every press conference and media scrum, and now suddenly this mornings it's "We should keep Callahan, the need for picks/prospects be damned".
The Kings were actually a good team on paper, and struggled in the beginning of their Cup season. They made key acquisitions (Jeff Carter) and they got hot at the right time (even though they entered as the 8th seed, they were playing really great hockey in the spring up to the postseason) Also, they were only 3 points from being the 3rd seed, so them being an 8th seed was a slight illusion to the talent that they had. IMHO, that LA team was a much deeper team that the current NYR. With that said, I think this NYR team is one elite center & one offensive d-man away from being a really good team.
hate to bring it up because its so far away, but next years UFA class has a couple of high end centers. Spezza, Toews and Krejci. Obviously I would love to snag one of them, but most likely all of them will be resigned. I would give Toews the key to the city to come here lol
could not agree with you more but still think we need a stewart like guy to ride shotgun with our stars because even if we goon it up the goon is on ice maybe 3-5 mins a game but a plaayer like stewart is a deterent. Not saying we need wholesale changes a tweak here or there we are damn good but not good enough. stewart also helps our snipers get more room. but we NEED a #1 center and maybe one of the Av's youngsters can become that they are very talented. Mckinnon will be a beast he is that good now
The PP has definitely looked GREAT, and any change of putting Cally in for Kreider or Pouliot would simply be for a little freshness if the coaches think they're getting stagnant, which at the moment, I don't think they are.
They're generating chances and creating momentum. Last year our PP used to kill our momentum and give it to the other team. At least we're not doing that anymore.
I do think, though, that the kind of goals Cally scores from in close could earn him some minutes over Kredier, espeically if scouting a teams PK shows some sort of system mis-alignment. Cally has the ability to move to the sides of the net for one-timers better than Kreider. You'll also notice Cally out there on 5-on-3s, much for the same reason, because goals are scored off of quick cross-ice passes that open up lanes, as opposed to firing a shot on net and hoping for a rebound.
Thank you for being a voice of reason in a wilderness about Richards -- who has been very good on the PP this year.
And yes, Cally would go in for Kreider or Pouliot.
Last thing, although no goals, the PP has still looked GREAT (for the most part). I wouldn't change anything, just practice it a bit to make sure peeps don't get too fancy.
He's not going to go in over Richards at the point. Like it or not, Richards has proven to be the best forward at the point for us so far and he commitment to getting in shape over the summer, coupled with his lower minutes on the 3rd line, allow his to play the majority of each PP without wearing him out as much as you're implying.
He can't take faceoffs, so he's probably not going in over Step.
The logical step would be to replace Kreider with Cally, since Kreider has been given the task of screening. I wouldn't be surprised if we see him in that spot at least once in the next two games.
Toews would be amazing, but like you said, extremely unlikely. Spezza will be 31-32 at that point, might be beyond what we need. I wouldn't be surprised though in Krejci hit the open market. I'm not looking at the Bruins roster right now, but they've got a lot of young guys in the mix who will need to get signed to "big boy" contracts in the coming years, and they always seem to be right up against the cap. Krecji's demands may be too high if they have to resign Hamilton, Krug, and some of their other developing players.