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Musings; Playoffs anyone?

It’s late and for that I apologise. On to the Musings.

The way Brad Richards has taken his game to a higher level recently is why the Rangers gave him the big dollars. He’s peaking at the right time heading in to the playoffs and the Rangers have a (legitimate) first line for the first time since the Jagr-Nylander-Straka years.

Ryan Callahan deserves a 30 goal season; hopefully he bags one in the next two games. If you could re-do the 2004 NHL draft there is no way he’d last in to the fourth round. He’d be a nailed on first rounder.

Rick Carpiniello recently discussed the Rangers passing ability. I think it’s underrated and has clearly improved this season. The Rangers may not be as skilled as the Red Wings or the Penguins but they don’t get the credit they deserve in regard to their skill level.

Hopefully fans (the team sure won’t) don’t overlook the Capitals should they be the first round match up. They have underachieved all year but are remarkably talented and could easily go deep. They’re a huge potential banana skin for the Rangers.

If the Rangers make some noise in the playoffs they’ll do so because Marian Gaborik is scorching hot. There are very few players in the entire league playing better right now. His pace makes people back off him and he has the talent to back it up. Right now, it’s an absolute joy to watch him on the ice.

Can you imagine how dangerous the Rangers could be if Artem Anisimov and Brandon Dubinsky ever find some offensive consistency?

Ryan McDonagh: Within the next five years he’ll be a Norris Trophy candidate. That’s how good he can become.

NHL.com recently tipped Jon Quick to pip Lundqvist for the Vezina. While he’s a quality goalie, he’s the beneficiary of a stingy system and doesn’t have to face the ridiculously deep Atlantic division so often like Lundqvist has. If Hank doesn’t win it this year he may never get it; how good does he have to be?

Wonder if any of Woywitka, Eminger or Stralman will be back next year?

Question Time:

  • Yes or No: Does Lundqvist retire as a Ranger? Does he get his number hanging from the ceiling?
  • Will Marian Gaborik have a 50 goal season as a Ranger?
  • Will the Rangers bring back Jon Mitchell next season?
  • Brand Dubinsky or Anisimov; which will be an ex Ranger sooner?
  • Who will be the Rangers highest scoring defenseman in the playoffs?

Rangers take on the Pens today. I’m expecting fireworks. Not a bad game at all to rest Lundqvist.

Should the Rangers get the Caps, it could add a huge dollop of intrigue to game 82 of the regular season. Do the teams try and beat each other up ahead of their series? Do the teams rest players, starting goal tenders or change up the special teams personnel? An interesting game to coach…

20 Responses to “Musings; Playoffs anyone?”

  1. JordanO says:

    Yes and Yes – Hopefully Henrik stays here his whole career and his legacy tops even Richter’s (great as he was).

  2. RangerSmurf says:

    Yes to Lundqvist, both accounts.
    No to Gaborik.
    No.

    If I have to pick, Dubinsky. I think they’re going to last a lot longer than most speculate. Many undersell how the organization views them. But Dubinsky is more in jeopardy because of Kreider’s potential impact and what Hagelin has added to the lineup. Anisimov’s still the best 2-way center on the team/in the organization, and it’s not especially close. Step has improved wonderfully, but still has some time to catch AA.

    Del Zotto. Most PP time = most pts. Give McDonagh that time, and it’s him.

    • RangerSmurf says:

      Let me correct myself. Boyle is better defensively than AA, but not as talented offensively. Overall, Anisimov is still the better 2-way player, but Boyle is very good too.

    • Zen says:

      Catch AA? Stepan has already leap-frogged AA in terms of the organizational depth chart. How AA performs in the playoffs will be a big deciding factor in terms of his future on the team IMO.

      • RangerSmurf says:

        Stepan is ahead on the depth chart, that’s not what I’m saying.

        On a (much) larger scale, it’s the same as if you looked at Malkin and J. Staal. Malkin is obviously ahead on the depth chart and is way more skilled offensively, but J. Staal is very clearly the better 2-way player, and it’s not close.

        That’s the argument I’m making.

  3. Zen says:

    As I have mentioned here before, I completely agree on McD being a Norris guy in the near future. His ceiling is limitless with the talent he possesses.

  4. Leatherneckinlv says:

    I agree on McDonagh…that kid is special as he has demonstrated all year long as well as last year. Lundqvuist is a Ranger for life and will probably have his number up in the rafters.
    I do not think Gabby will net 50 in this system but will score 40 again.
    Jon Mitchell should be brought back. He is a very good 4th line player that can shift up to other lines.
    Dubi and Arty should be given one more year to show the players that they can be.
    Del Zotto will be the main point producer on Defense in the playoffs followed by Girardi.
    Stralman, Woywitka and Eminger are goners, should the Rangers sign Justin Schultz. Justin Schultz should be the heir apparent to Girardi as McDonagh’s partner. Sauer may also be a gonner as well. Hopefully in a trade over a career ending concussion. I love Sauer and how he plays and in reality I hope he can play as a Ranger, however I highly doubt that.

  5. Pasquale says:

    Lundqvist – yes to retires, if he gets his cup definet to the rafters.

    Marion – If the current Rich-Russian-Kid line stays hot for a few seasons, maybe?

    Mitchell – I think coach likes him. He played better then a few others who were expected to do more.

    Arti or Dubbbless – depends on playoffs, but man sometimes artu has amazing skills… sometimes!

    I hope MDZ gets hot again, but RMD if he stays agrresive… Def not gonna be stall, can we trade him? hmmm

  6. Jeff says:

    FLYERS GAINED KILLER MOMENTUM FROM THESE MUSINGS!

    • Dave says:

      Ok here’s the deal Craig. I can track IP addresses of those that comment, I know this is you.

      This is your final warning. If you continue to post here, I will contact Road Runner (your ISP, yes I can trace that too) and have action taken.

      This is posted here so that there is public record of a final warning to you.

      • Jess says:

        Good for you Dave, this is a good site with intelligent discussions about the franchise. Cut that troll off at the knees.

      • Spozo says:

        this blog has been fortunate enough to have intelligent ranger fans who enjoy talking hockey. One dickhead was bound to interfere.

    • Dave says:

      Also Craig, do you not have a life that all you do is sit around and bitch about one comment? Get a life, get a girl/boy friend, get a hobby. Go outside. Seriously.

      • VinceR says:

        Hey, that’s my line! Love that you can track this Dave, he thinks he was being slick by using another name, but the fact he keeps posting the same lines, using the same phrases with same patterns kind of made it obvious too.

        Big fan of the troll smackdown. I’ll leave it up to you guys and just post my comments and try to keep it classy and stay above it.

  7. Jeff P says:

    Yes (but you never know). As far as number from the ceiling – win a cup this year and he has already done enough for that.
    No – but he could and should have a couple more 40 goal ones.
    Don’t care. Rangers are probably hoping that his spot goes to a youngster like Yogan.
    Dubi – Anisimov’s ceiling is higher, and he’s cheaper.
    MdZ

  8. dddd says:

    •Yes or No: Does Lundqvist retire as a Ranger? Does he get his number hanging from the ceiling?

    Yes and Yes.

    •Will Marian Gaborik have a 50 goal season as a Ranger?

    No, unless he can prove he can stay healthy like he has this season.

    •Will the Rangers bring back Jon Mitchell next season?

    I hope not, he’s still young and has talent but we have/should have better options next season.

    •Brand Dubinsky or Anisimov; which will be an ex Ranger sooner?

    Dubi– i think we can more value for Dubi because teams will try to take a chance with him. He has the higher ceiling.

    •Who will be the Rangers highest scoring defenseman in the playoffs?

    MDZ

  9. Chris F says:

    Lundqvist, yes. Drafted by the organization, he made an impact immediately, winning 30+ games in every season he has played with the Rangers. If he wins a Cup, his legacy will surpass that of Richter, and he will retire a Ranger.

    Gaborik- Definitely several more 40 goal campaigns. He’ll flirt with 50, but I don’t think he’ll get there.

    Mitchell- I think the Rangers will want to keep him around; however, it will be hard to find a consistent place for him if you add Kreider to the mix, because that will drop someone to a lower line with Boyle, Prust and Rupp already in the mix.

    I foresee an Anisimov trade next season. Dubinsky still has some heavy-weight defenders in the organization, Tortorella and Sather, and he’s shown what he can do over a season last year. Anisimov over his career has demonstrated an all too often tendency to disappear, and I’m not sure anyone will speak up for him if his name is brought up as a trade option.

    MDZ- The kid is showing glimpses of getting hot. I think he’ll chip in the most points from the Rangers’ blueliners this playoff run.

  10. Walt says:

    Hank will retire in a blue shirt, and #30 will hang over MSG ice, with the rest of our greats!!

    With the right wing, and Richards centering, Gabby could have a 50 goal season. This is assuming that we got scoreing from other lines as well, and he won’t see every teams checking line!

    After this season, Mitchell will be gone, or playing for the Whale.

    The first to be moved will be Artie, Dubi’s contract is pretty steep for teams to take on!

    Mike DZ will be the highest scoreing d-man for the Rangers this play-off.

    I have a good feeling about Dubi coming out this play-off season, and will be a main key in our success…..

  11. wwpd says:

    2004 – was that the year we had like 7 useless picks in the first two rounds before picking dubi at the end of rd 2? who’d have ever thought we get our captain from that draft