Game 77: Alain returns to Vancouver

April 1, 2014, by
Source: Getty Images

Source: Getty Images

It’s almost fitting this game takes place on April Fools’ Day. What is sure to be a media circus today with a lot of foolish questions and baiting for jabs, hopefully the Rangers can see past the narrative and just go about their business to get the two points.

Under Tortorella, the Canucks play an aggressive 2-1-2 forecheck and aim to keep the opposition pinned below the dots, similar to how the Rangers used to play. Although it hasn’t translated into a playoff spot, the Canucks have improved their Fenwick%, which is 9th in the league (up from 12th last year). So this team shouldn’t be taken lightly.

In the defensive zone, the Canucks play a zone defense and try to defend you in layers depending on puck location. On special teams, Gully has them playing a 1-3-1 power play. Sully is in charge of the PK and has them rotating between a box and a diamond formation depending on puck location.

This will be another good test for the Blueshirts as several potential playoff matchups employ a similar style of play (e.g., Penguins, Bruins, etc.).

Rangers Lineup:


Carl HagelinDerek StepanRick Nash
Brad RichardsDominic MooreMartin St. Louis
Benoit PouliotDerick BrassardMats Zuccarello
Dan CarcilloBrian BoyleDerek Dorsett


Ryan McDonaghDan Girardi
Marc StaalAnton Stralman
Raphael DiazKevin Klein

Hank gets the start.

Scratches/Injuries: Chris Kreider (hand), John Moore (concussion symptoms), Ryan Haggerty (healthy), J.T. Miller (healthy), Justin Falk (healthy)

Game time is 10pm on MSG. Don’t forget to check out our Rangers Tickets link for deals to attend games.

"Game 77: Alain returns to Vancouver", 5 out of 5 based on 4 ratings.
Categories : Game Thread


  1. SalMerc says:

    Unclear to me how Carcillo blends with Richards and MSL, but time will tell. Maybe he throws his body around and makes some space. Time for MSL to light the lamp.

    • Rangers Fan in Boston says:

      AV is looking for something to click on that top 6 to replace Kreider. I agree that Carcillo is not your typical top 6 winger, but since JT is riding the pine, there isn’t much by way of options. They miss a big body to play in the paint.

      He doesn’t want to break up that 3rd line which has been the most consistent all year.

    • Dave says:

      When you need to leave the third and fourth lines intact, there aren’t many options.

      • Puck Luck @Centerman21 says:

        What about this kid Haggerty? They just put him on the roster to sign him only to make him a healthy scratch every night? They could use a righty stick on at least the top PP unit. Or is he a Miller that doesn’t know how to play away from the puck in pro hockey game.

    • Puck Luck @Centerman21 says:

      They finally set the 4th line up the way I think they should have it. With Boyle or Moore in the middle. Not both.
      Carcillo-Boyle-Dorsett. That’s a balanced line combo with 2 Lefties & a Righty. They play the same as they have the last few games and just scored the first goal. AV put Moore on the 2nd line with MSL & Richards. That’s a good idea and he’s earned it with his play the last number of games. That 4th line should be good. Causing turnovers on the Forecheck. Causing confusion on the part of the opposition. LGR!!!!!!!!

      • Chris F says:

        Yes it’s a much better game plan to have Carcillo on the 4th line and Moore playing top-6 minutes than vice versa.

        I’m OK with this attempt at replacing Kreider. Moore can be successful with Richards and MSL.

  2. Chris F says:

    What a stupid play by Burrows. The game is over, no need to drill McDonagh there. He was getting forecheck from behind and Burrows just rocks him in a vulnerable position.

    Mac looked to be in some pretty serious pain. Hopefully he left more due to the time left in the game than the injury itself.

    Can’t afford to lose him for any amount of time.

  3. Walt says:

    MSL finally got the monkey off of his back!!!

    Let’s see if he starts scoring on a regular basis????????