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Defense pairs swapped to prepare for Bruins

Per Andrew Gross, coach John Tortorella has flipped his defensive pairs to prep for the Boston series, as “Ryan McDonagh is skating with Anton Stralman while Dan Girardi is with Michael Del Zotto. John Moore remains with Steve Eminger and Marc Staal (blurred vision) is not skating.” This makes sense, as the Bruins are a much deeper and less top-heavy team than the Caps, requiring the Rangers to adjust their pairings to be able to deal with four strong lines.

Gross also notes that in addition to Staal, Darroll Powe and Ryane Clowe are not skating.

19 Responses to “Defense pairs swapped to prepare for Bruins”

  1. zach says:

    No arguments here

    • Dave says:

      Makes logical sense. Also shows that Torts adjusts for teams, doing the whole “coaching” thing. People will still find an issue with it though.

  2. Walt says:

    This spreads the TOI for McD, and Dan a little. Too bad about Staal, he would have been a great addition for the team. I hope he gets over what ever it is that is troubling him, it’s his future that worries me if this becomes psycological!!!

    • Dave says:

      Yea, it will definitely result in a more even spread of ice time for five of the six (Eminger may be the odd man out at some point).

    • RangerMom says:

      I don’t think Staal’s problem is mental (although I think he has learned to be cautious). Sadly, I think he’s having real trouble seeing out of the injured eye. Hope it continues to heal, but only time will tell.

      • Dave says:

        He said it’s not physical. He wants to make sure he doesn’t feel like a liability on the ice. Don’t know if that means mental issues or blurred vision.

  3. Rockdog says:

    Richards remains on the 4th line … wow. Not saying that it isn’t justified, but it does make you wonder if they will buy him out this summer.

    • Dave says:

      I don’t think they buy him out.

      That said, the fourth line played pretty well in Game Seven.

      • Rockdog says:

        Dave,

        I tend to agree with you, but damn, he is an expensive fourth line center.

        • Dave says:

          He’s been awful, that’s for sure. But they have until 2014 to buy him out. If he continues like this, I think they buy him out then, but not now when their center depth is thin and Miller is still an unknown.

      • Tim B says:

        Torts has the lines balanced. Each line is a scoring threat. You have Richards with top prospect Kreider and a former 15 goal scorer Aaron Asham. Plus wth a playmaking center with them is just deadly. I dont mind it. As long as they play consistently than this line could stay together for the rest of the playoffs.

        • Dave says:

          I’d honestly be OK with them sticking together. It’s not ideal, and if Clowe ever comes back he’s taking Kreider’s spot, but the line played well.

          One thing it does do: It creates matchup hell for teams without depth, like it did with Washington. It won’t create hell for Boston, but it would for Pittsburgh.

          • Rockdog says:

            Dave,

            Why does it create such a matchup problem? Is it just a case of spreading the talent around, or is there something specific? Also, did the 4th line get a lot of ice time / do you expect them to see a lot of ice time? (Does this help the Rangers in terms of workload?)

            • Dave says:

              It gives the Rangers depth. That’s a fourth line that has the potential to put the puck in the net (as we saw on Monday), and few teams have a fourth line with that level of skill. The opposition has to be cognizant of that.

              It spreads out the ice time at 5v5 if you have 4 lines that can provide good shifts. You will still have guys getting more ice time because of special teams.

              • TxRangerLovesSideBoob says:

                I don’t like the idea of paying a guy his salary to play on the fourth line, but if it helps to develop Kreider and makes us a more dangerous team, then I’m down for it.

                At the start of the season, if you would’ve said Krieder’d be playing on a line with Richards in the playoffs, I’d have been stoked, as I naturally would’ve assumed it meant he was on the top line playing well. Never did I or probably anyone evr think Asham and Richards would be linemates (is that one word or two? VinceR you know?)

                Here’s to hoping My Cousin VinnyR doesn’t berate me again. Golly.

              • VinceR says:

                Much better than “what right does Justin have to discuss hockey?” So you’re on the right track.

  4. pas44 says:

    PLEASE HELP

    WTF! what can we do to show the outrage for Henrik not even a nominee for the EA Sports cover 2014?

    THIS IS BS AND I DO NOT GET UPSET MUCH

    WTF 2012 V WINNER
    2013 V NOMINEE

    WHAT CRAP IS THIS

    • Jackson says:

      It’s a video game cover, man. In any case, it appears that the last time a goalie was on the cover was way back on NHL 97. I wouldn’t take Hank’s absence personally.

      • TxRangerLovesSideBoob says:

        While I totally agree with you, how the hell did Claude Giroux get the cover this year?