New forward lines for tonight, still no changes on defense

November 27, 2016, by
rangers canucks

Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Alain Vigneault has switched up the lines for this evening’s tilt against the Ottawa Senators, moving J.T. Miller to center on a line with Mats Zuccarello and Rick Nash. Full lines for tonight:

Chris Kreider-Derek Stepan-Jesper Fast
Michael Grabner-Kevin Hayes-Brandon Pirri
Matt Puempel-Josh Jooris-Jimmy Vesey

The defense remained the same. So Adam Clendening will join Oscar Lindberg in the press box as the healthy scratches.

"New forward lines for tonight, still no changes on defense", 5 out of 5 based on 2 ratings.
Categories : Lineup Changes


  1. supermaz says:

    I like Miller at center, otherwise I hate, hate, hate these lines. Vesey on the 4th line, really?

    • Rhodork says:

      Fast on 2nd line bad
      Vesey on 4th line bad (Vesey was on 4th Friday) I think he wants to give Pumpernickel some consistent linemates and he figures he can bench the whole line if they screw up.
      Splitting Miller and Hayes bad, but trying Miller at C is good.

      Hot take: They’re getting ready to package Fast and Lindberg and maybe Clendening for a D – but if they do this, who will they bench?

  2. Pony says:

    Hank in net?

  3. Ranger11 says:

    I’m not thrilled about those lines either but one thing we can say this year is no matter who gets out on the top 3 lines there’s always good talent. The 4th line too really. I think the big thing fans won’t like is Fast on the 2nd line. He may not be a big goal scorer but he’s a smart player and always gives ya everything he’s got. Besides he’s always in the 4th line so that’s part of the reason he’s not the goal scorer some of the others are. Maybe Pirri can get more chances to show that good shot he has playing with Hayes n Grabner. We’ll see what happens. i know one thing I’m not into is Vesey on the 4th line but it don’t really matter what I like or don’t like. I try to keep trust in the coaches. I have a feeling they know more then I do.

    • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

      I agree. I know half this board has a heart attack when player X is moved to a line they think he shouldn’t be on. But this Rangers team is so unique in that there are four lines that you can argue are close to being equally good. And AV, like most coaches, will shuffle lines as the game goes on when the situation warrants. So really, how important is it? Especially on 11/27 when you are still learning about your squad, and perhaps as Rhodork said, some players may be getting showcased for a trade.

      I know Fast is a flashpoint for some. I prefer him on the 4th line as most of you do. But, as I mentioned before, it’s been reported that his teammates apparently lobby AV to get him on their line. They feel whatever line he is on makes them better. So his teammates clearly see him as a valuable asset.

      In Vesey’s case, we’ve seen AV “demote” young players to 3rd or 4th line duty, and usually we learn later it was done to say, hey, you are doing some good things but we need you to work a little more on this element or that element of your game. (see Miller or Hayes the last couple of seasons when they weren’t working hard enough, especially on defense)

      I have no problem with a little experimentation at this point. It’s November not May.

      • AZgene4240 says:

        Happy Holiday’s everyone,

        I do not mind the lines at all and it is early in the season and putting a player like Vesey on the 4th line with the new guy is not a bad thing at all. The Rangers 4th line is as good as most team’s third lines.

        The only thing I do not like about these lines is Miller not with Hayes. Those two are so good together but I think with Zib out who is a center, we need Miller to play center on one line and Hayes on the 3rd line as the center.

        I do not understand why Adam C cannot get a shot to play for Klein or Dan G.

  4. Richter1994 says:

    LOL, I just can’t…

  5. Spozo says:

    Well at least no one has said he should be fired for these lines yet.

  6. Hatrick Swayze says:

    With Zibanejad and Buchnevich out, the lines look a bit thinner than I’d expect.

    • Richter1994 says:

      Nah, they look thinner because the coach…………………………………………

  7. Peter says:

    I think the line lists matter a bit less than they did last season because the forward depth enables AV to do what he has always preferred to do: roll 4 lines on short shifts to keep their legs fresh. It was working quite well before the injuries and is still working but not quite as well.

    I have no problem with the 4th line and where Fast is playing. Three young guys on the 4th is actually a rather fun idea. Fast us defensively responsible, which is why AV wants to give him a bit more minutes. Not s mystery at all.

    These things will work themselves as the season progresses and Mika and Buch return. Barring too many future injuries their forward depth will enable a lot of flexibility.

    Relax, enjoy the game!

  8. Ted says:

    This team has an issue countering the forecheck of some of their opponents. Trading McIlrath was a mistake. These guys don’t need to be straight grinders, but more physical play in the defensive zone would be nice.

  9. rich s says:

    Agree totally regarding mcilrath!!!
    Young,right handed, improving, physical, team player, statistically [in limited time] was 2 nd most effective ranger defenseman last season……

    But Ted, if you mention mcilrath in this blog you might hurt someones feelings!!!!

    • Spozo says:

      Despite 29 other GMs stating he wasn’t an NHL caliber defenseman and that he’s dressed one time for the Panthers and was a -2, Mcilraths Minions will still fight the good fight.

      At this point the only thing you are insulting is our intelligence.

    • Sadie Hophones says:

      I think mcllrath will win the Norris trophy this year

      • Bobby B says:

        Ted/rich s/Jerry/Fotiu, 3 years from now , Mcllrath will be wearing a Captains C or at least an A for some lucky franchise. Probably skating around a rink with a Stanley Cup. While Girardi and Staal are still 1st pair defense man collecting big checks from the Rangers..

        • Spozo says:

          The funny part is I truly don’t know if you are making a joke or not.

          • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

            Bobby is THE best, and one of my favorite posters. But I do believe he’s serious.

        • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

          Why stop there Bobby? Maybe a jersey retirement and HOF election too? Maybe we should first see if he can actually crack the Panthers lineup first. 🙂

          The very lineup that Gallant said a few days ago is sorely lacking in toughness he craves…and yet he STILL won’t play the kid? What does that tell you?

          Ratings are slipping on the All-McIlrath Channel I see. Got to do whatever we can to overhype a marginal AHL/NHL level player!

          As Aerosmith would say….”Dream On!”

          • Spozo says:

            UNLEASH THE UNDERTAKER……. On the AHL!

            • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

              And I just checked tonight’s lineup. 2nd game of a back to back for the Panthers and DMC finds himself in his usual spot… the press box!

              What is the problem with Gallant? He must hate the kids worse than AV! At least AV played Dylan in about half the games he was healthy enough to play in. Maybe AV should be taken to the woodshed for OVERPLAYING him last year. 🙂

              Well, maybe the Undertaker can start a blog–best press box cuisines in the league. No one is better qualified to write that!

            • Peter says:

              I think the bottom line on Dylan is that he is still a work in progress. He may make a competent NHL defenseman some day. Yandle thinks highly of him and recommended him to the Panthers based upon their playing time together. He simply did not fit in with the Rangers plans this season, which was to win as many games possible and reach for the cup. if they were in rebuilding mode, it might have been different for him, he is a good young man and I hope he has a wonderful career.

              • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:


                Very fair points. That’s what the Minions don’t understand. The Rangers are playing for the here and now. McIlrath is clearly NOT an NHL ready defenseman today, but that doesn’t mean he can’t grow into one. Defesmemen take time to develop, especially big guys like DMC. But right now, no team in the league thinks he can help them win today.

        • rich s says:

          If mcilrath was so bad how does the group of mcilrath doubters EXPLAIN his stats from last year, the fact that he was statisically the rangers 2 nd best defenseman??????

          And I am sure had he played a full season and allowed to develop under a good coach, he would be at worst a second pair defenseman!!!!

          And can anyone honestly say he is not a better skater than girardi????? Although his snow angels will never match girardis

          • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

            Easy. Limited sample size. Sheltered minutes. Total overreaction.

            So why, if he was as good as you say he is, that NO ONE picked him up on waivers? Why don’t you explain why Gallant won’t play him, and came out and said publicly he’s has to work on his foot speed (translation–too slow right now for the NHL game)

            Gallant said the other day his team needs more toughness. If so, why won’t he play him?

            Can’t just gloss over that and blame everything on AV. If he’s as good as you say, he should be playing.

          • Peters says:

            Rich, if he is a sure thing NHL defenseman, why would Gorton let him go? Why would all other clubs pass him by on waivers? Why are the Panthers having rude the pine? Most likely explanation is that his stats don’t tell the story and he needs more AHL development time, but with free agency looming if he doesn’t play enough NHL games no one wanted to take a shot.

            The true test of his worth may be when he goes UFA. If someone signs him we might see him get a chance if it does not work out with Florida.

  10. rich s says:

    Bobby B ,,

    lets face it the rangers know what they are doing…..
    who wouldnt rather have girardi than strallman
    who wouldnt rather have stall than yandle
    who wouldnt rather have nothing than duclair

    remember this is the franchise that traded rick middleton for ken hodge!!!!!

    • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

      Totally false options you’ve created.

      Girardi was at the top of his game when he was signed. Stralman was an average journeyman at the time of the signing.

      Staal was signed before Yandle was acquired.

      Duclair? What are you even talking about here? And btw, have you checked his stats? He’s been brutal. Rumors are Coyotes may trade him.

      At least get your facts straight.

  11. Bobby B says:

    OK, I started a fire storm, lets put it out !! Eddie, how did you know that AEROSMITH was my favorite band??? :), lets go Rangers!!!

    • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

      While I may question your choice of defensemen, your choice of rock bands can not be questioned! LGR!!!!

  12. amy says:

    the effort last night was bad put the lines as they were see you tommorrow