The need for a depth forward grows evident

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America

Over the past few weeks, we’ve focused primarily on the Rangers need for a bottom pairing defenseman. We’ve discussed how the Rangers could use a depth forward as well (here and here), but it wasn’t until tonight that it became evident that Torts doesn’t necessarily trust his bottom lines. At one point in the second period, Torts ran a 1-2-1-2-3-1-2-4 rotation with his lines. Considering the majority of the top six play the powerplay and/or the penalty kill, this leads to a lot of ice time and tired legs.

Torts needs a bottom six he can trust so that his best players don’t get burned out for the postseason. It’s clear that Torts doesn’t trust Kris Newbury –although he might be a temporary player while Kreider grows– and Jeff Halpern. Halpern will be better, but the Rangers won’t be able to survive with a fourth line of Halpern, Mike Rupp, and Arron Asham. When looking at the way Torts uses his players, a line of two enforcers and a face off specialist won’t see much time.

The idea of Dominic Moore had floated around before, and while Moore himself might not be the best fit, the Rangers need a player like him. The Rangers can survive with one of Asham/Rupp playing and the other being a rotating 13th forward. Specifically, they need a defensively sound winger who can skate. It will give Halpern and Asham (who is a better skater than most realize) a complementary player to assist in playing a shut down role.

Of course, should the club pick up a depth forward, Torts will need to play him and learn to trust him. They won’t be able to survive with two-thirds of their fourth line playing single digit shifts. They also won’t survive with Stu Bickel playing forward. I know it’s early, but these are issues that have carried over from last postseason as well.

22 Responses to “The need for a depth forward grows evident”

  1. rocketroy says:

    Before We Played Gm # 1….I said we were (2) 20 goal forwards & one D-Man short….After (4) gms I say that Rupp, Bickel,Boyle & Asham all need to GO…Glen, this team is poorly coached, pathetic on powerplay, team passing, overall team playmaking, defense and scoring…They need a quik transfusion…Please call Ducks and ask about Perry, Ryan & Getzlaf…HELP!!!!!

    • VinceR says:

      You really think they would give us Perry, Ryan & Getzlaf for Rupp, Bickel, Boyle & Asham? You mention the two 20 goal forwards, but how do we obtain them? There is reality to deal with and the best thing Slats can try to find is a value forward to fill a spot, be a decent skater and defensively sound, and possibly help knock in a lucky bounce or a hustle opportunity every now and then. But to be able to pick up a 20 goal scorer is just an unrealistic goal at this point.

      Don’t get me wrong, if we can pull one out of our butts from somewhere, I’m all for it, but I don’t think we have any assets that make sense to trade for one.

    • Dave says:

      You keep saying this, but when people reply, you offer no plan for this.

      • rickyrants13 says:

        First off he never made that trade useing those players he simply said he thinks they have to go. And he also said what he thinks we needed to win. And Kreider could have been one of those 20 goal guys if all worked out. So far not so.

  2. Ray says:

    The fourth line wasn’t much last year and Torts won’t use it much anyway. So far though, the second line has disappointed and the third line is woeful. Don’t need another star, but we need more than another depth forward.

    • Dave says:

      I’m not worried about the second line four games into the season. The bottom six have been worrisome since before the season started.

      • Ray says:

        I think the second line will come around also. But I feel the third line is the real problem – and that can’t be fixed with a fourth line player.

  3. david says:

    we really needed krieder this season and when he goes poop it screws everything up..maybe a Miller can come up and fill a need on the third line

    • Chris.C says:

      Krieder IMO isn’t really ready. He needs sometime down in the A league. where he can get 18-20 mins a game and experience. JT also needs to sit put and collect the mins also.

  4. Staten Island Joe says:

    KREIDER-JT MILLER-HAGELIN …..Thats the ANSWER RIGHT NOW Bros !

  5. Bloomer says:

    I still don’t get how you single out Kreiders play when the majority of the team is not playing well. The Rangers coach needs to get more from his players. They are capable of much more.

  6. rocketroy says:

    Reality Check…I assume most understand how blogs work..First I doubt we could get anyone to take the (4) Players I mentioned, let alone trading for those Ducks…I think we will need to finally move one of our top prospects (Kreider, Hagelin,Del Zotto etc, and I mentioned the (3) Ducks, because I think all (3) are free agents after 2013…May have to move Gaborik..???

    • Spozo says:

      You keep talking about moving Gaborik. This team was built with a two year window for a cup and you want to trade our best forward right now? Who happens to be 29 and in his prime? How would we possibly get back anything that would replace his production and how would this help us win a Stanley Cup?

  7. Mikeyyy says:

    What everyone failed to realize when we got Nash was what we gave up for him.

    AA and Dubi provided that depth.

    With hags and Kreider off to a slow start we look like we lack depth…because we traded it away.

    Now I like the trade, don’t get me wrong. But, there was a fact that we would need a season to rebuild. That was the worst case scenario. And that is what it is looking like.

    If we are rebuilding, then every young guy in Hartford should get a 10 game looksy. Call up jt miller, should have called up kolarik.

  8. Jared says:

    I think that we do need more depth but in order to get more depth we have to give something up.

    To think that a team would throw a reputable 2nd line forward for any combination of Boyle-Rupp-Asham would be a steal. If its not going to be them then a prospect, we have some young players that every NHL team would like to steal away from us Kreider-DZ-Haglin-McDonagh-Miller. People will want someone in return.

    For the time being, I think they have to look internally and try something out. I would like to see JT Miller skate in the NHL although that may be rushed. But look at Galchenyuk, great juniors campaign could turn into one in the NHL.

  9. Jeff P says:

    Projections for this season included growth of Hagelin and Kreider as 2-3rd line forwards. As this has not (yet) happened, Rangers are struggling. For next year, I see 1 or 2 from J.T.Miller, Lindberg and Fast being here and providing this depth, but fo r this year, I don’t see it happening.

  10. TxRanger says:

    They should just bring Dmoinic Moore back, the dude is a great player.

  11. Sally says:

    I like Dominic Moore, but he might not be ready to play since his wife just died a few weeks ago.

  12. rickyrants13 says:

    The second line as is will never be much of anything. There is not one player on that line that has the stick handeling ability to go from one end of the ice to the other. And if you cant gain the zone you cant score goals.

    Stepan was suppose to be that player and he is not.

  13. rocketroy says:

    Crystal Clear Vision…First of all, even though I am convinced we need a transfusion of scoring help, our future super star is Kreider, and I would only move him for a Top Notch scoring wing, under 30 years old, and 35 goal guy..I do think the (3) Ducks will be moved by deadline, so why not see what it would take to get one of them.or two.

  14. rickyrants13 says:

    Lets stay away from Perry Weeks called him the biggest crybaby in the NHL last night on the NHL NETWORK. Thats the last thing we need.