Apr
20

Thoughts heading into a pivotal Game Five

April 20, 2017, by
chris kreider

Photo Credit: AP / Graham Hughes

The Rangers played their best game of the 2017 calendar year on Tuesday night, evening the series in the process. But now the series turns back to Montreal for a critical Game Five for both clubs. The Rangers are going to try to play the same way they did in Game Four. The Canadiens are probably going to adjust to prevent just that. Naturally, I have some thoughts.

1. Game Five is going to come down to coaching. Claude Julien is going to adjust. He’s going to ensure the Rangers don’t have as much time in the offensive zone. My guess is he’s going to have his defensemen attend to stand up at the blue line, stopping the zone entry and forcing a soft dump to Carey Price to handle. Alain Vigneault’s ability to adjust to Julien’s adjustments will have a huge impact. The most important thing for the Rangers is to continue to gain the zone with speed through the neutral zone.

2. The forward production has been a problem. Rick Nash and Michael Grabner have two goals apiece. Jesper Fast, Mats Zuccarello, and Tanner Glass each have one. Four guys have one assist. That’s it for forward scoring. That simply isn’t going to cut it. On the bright side, the Rangers are even with Montreal despite guys like Derek Stepan, Mika Zibanejad, JT Miller, Kevin Hayes, and Chris Kreider not contributing. That’s a major positive. But on the negative, they aren’t scoring, and they haven’t really done much right in terms of process. I’m ok with them not scoring if they contribute in other manners and the Rangers win.

3. This has been a pretty dirty series. But don’t let that fool you. It’s been dirty with and without Glass in the lineup. There has been no needle moved in either direction. With the dearth of scoring, the Rangers need all the offense they can get. That means Pavel Buchnevich needs to stay in the lineup. He’s a legitimate and talented threat to score every time he’s on the ice.

4. It’s about time that Vigneault recognizes he cannot play Nick Holden or Kevin Klein anymore. Klein just doesn’t cut it anymore, and Holden has been awful. There is really nothing to lose by putting Adam Clendening in the lineup. He can’t be worse than Holden in his own zone, and at least Clendening can pass and skate with the puck. The blown plays in the defensive zone are, at worst, even between Clendo and Holden/Klein. Is there anything wrong with putting in a guy who is a net-positive offensively at this point? They need scoring.

5. What more can we say about Henrik Lundqvist? He’s been the only reason why this series is tied. We are not worthy.

"Thoughts heading into a pivotal Game Five", 4 out of 5 based on 8 ratings.
Categories : Playoffs

89 comments

  1. Richter1994 says:

    The first 10 minutes are key. If the Rangers come out forceful and weather the expected Habs’ storm through the first 10 minutes of the game then they will have a great chance to win tonight. Comes down to energy and battle level.

    Hayes, Miller, Kreider, and Stepan have to start doing something, like right now.

    I wonder if Raanta will get the start tonight.

    • SalMerc says:

      No way Raanta sees the ice, but agree first 10 minutes are crucial. Top lines need to do more absent of Nash and Zucc.

      Need to stay out of the box too. AV can tell them what to do, but can he light a fire under Kreider? I think he plays the 4th line more than the 2nd tonight.

      God bless the NYR!

      • Richter1994 says:

        I was being a smartass about Raanta, lol.

        I don’t know what’s with Kreider. He should be shredding this defense. Blowing by them without any problem. He should be dominating.

        • Spozo says:

          Kreider is starting to remind me of Kovalev.

          • supermaz says:

            Please, don’t insult Alex like that. Kovalev was awesome in the playoffs.

            • jerry maley says:

              Agree …Kovalev was a natural scorer and an excellent stick handler. love CK but he NEE
              DS TO GO TO THE EFFING net and not around it like he constantly does.

          • sherrane says:

            Kreider has been terrible against Montreal since the Price incident three years ago. I am wondering if it is in his head. He is at his best when he plays like a power forward with speed instead of a speedy guy who has size. He’s been the latter against Montreal. He needs to play around the net and make Price uncomfortable.

          • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

            I’ve been saying that for awhile. Kovalev = Kreider. Both were really good in the playoffs but were mostly frustrating players who fell well short of their potential. Which i why I advocated trading Kreider before the rest of the league figured out what he was.

            Like Kovy, Kreider has had his playoff moments. Hopefully, Playoff Kreider shows up soon.

          • Richter1994 says:

            Actually Kovalev was one of the better players in the 94 Cup run.

            • HARLEMBLUES says:

              People have short memories so thank you 94. The Messier game against the Devils the we will win game. Alex fingerprints are all over that game and he was simply amazing.

              • Richter1994 says:

                Alex was actually brilliant in those playoffs and it was his coming out party. He may not have scored a lot of points but his play was very effective all through out.

                Sometimes it’s not about points, especially when you’re not one of the top guns to be relied upon.

              • Spozo says:

                I seem to be getting murdered about this so let me clarify!

                I meant that he has all the talent in the world yet we are still waiting for him to put it all together on a consistent basis. Both players could look all world one game and all uninterested the next. That was my comparison. Hell, Gretzky called Kovalev the most talented player he ever played with. He is far from that as far as history is concerned.

            • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

              Let me clarify here. I am not at all saying Kovalev wasn’t BRILLIANT in the ’94 playoffs. He absolutely was.

              What I’m saying is…that was SUPPOSED to be his coming out party, but after that he devolved in to the “mystery wrapped in a riddle” type player that was incapable of carrying the franchise as Messier and others aged out.

              That’s my point about guys like Kreider, Miller and Hayes. They are very good players who are better when they aren’t the main focus. They haven’t yet shown that any one of them can take that next step to “elite” status. Not yet anyway.

              • Richter1994 says:

                Kovalev was one of the most gifted players ever to play the game. Did he reach that level is another story but he had the tools and hands to be that player. His head was, well, elsewhere. Give him Crosby’s determination and he is one of the best players of all time, proving that talent alone isn’t enough.

                Kreider, Miller, and Hayes can be very good players but they are no where near in the conversation with Kovalev.

        • Bobby B says:

          Kreider is an enigma . All world potential, his mind and heart is not in this series. He seems to be just going through the motions. Unless he is playing with a serious injury? Their is ABSOLUTELY no excuse for his extremely poor play.

          • Rich S says:

            I have been saying the same thing Bobby B….I think we will learn after the season that kreider is playing with some sort of injury and the rangers are keeping it under wraps……..
            But that still begs the question, why is he playing?
            I would have no problem dressing tanner glass, given kreider play….
            Considering how awful klein and holden have been, and how dirty ott and gallagher and radulov have been
            wouldn’t this have been the perfect series for McIlrath?

            • Jerry says:

              Bobby & Rich,
              Kreider doesn’t look like he’s nursing any type of injury to me. I just think he tentative around Price’s crease. You both maybe right and I may be ever so wrong. He is one of my favorite Rangers, he’s got all the tools, but he has to start playing with some fire.

            • Jerry says:

              Oh gosh darn Rich, you’ll upset Eddie so early in the day with that McIlrath comment.

              • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

                Upset? No. Make me laugh? Definitely! We sure would be a better off with a minor leaguer no NHL team wants at the moment!!!!!

              • Ray says:

                Of course we would be better off with a minor leaguer that nobody wants. Tommy Hughes would be an upgrade. And I’m not kidding. With a player he is uncomfortable with, AV cuts ice time. The worst possible scenario is a bad people who gets lots of ice time — and the only two such options are Klein and Holden.

                Better three blunders in ten minutes from DMac than four in 18 from Klein.

            • roadrider says:

              LOL McIlrath. Radulov would undress him before putting one in the back of the net just like Ovie did.

            • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

              He could be injured. Who knows? But I doubt it. Disappearing and disappointing is nothing new for this supposed star player–healthy or not.

              But sitting him makes zero sense now. He’s arguably our most talented player and could burst out at any moment.

            • SalMerc says:

              Please stop the McIrath crap. He is done, finito, a goner, history, kaput!

    • Hockey Sittoo says:

      LOL!

  2. supermaz says:

    AV, adjustments? I had to laugh. Clendening is no better than the other 2 bozos, I want Kampfer, he’s proven to be reliable defensively in the few chances he’s had.

    • King Sieveqvist ! King Sieveqvist ! King Sieveqvist ! says:

      And doesn’t mind the body

      • Chris F says:

        Yeah, because AV’S been so reluctant to make adjustments this series, right?

        He’s swapped out Glass, Buchnevich, Holden, and Klein.

        He’s juggled lines. He’s juggled PP units

        He’s tried a physical, grinding style. He’s opened up and tried a more speed oriented style.

        He’s adjusted the forecheck.

        He’s adjusted the neutral zone play.

        But don’t let that get in the way of your dogma.

        • Walt says:

          Chris

          Well isn’t it about time he did adjust???????? He did so out of panic………

          • Chris F says:

            No need to adjust after games 1 or 2 really, other than to bench Holden, which he did.

            No one could have predicted game 3. But, in game he tried to shuffle things to find something that worked. It didn’t.

            Heading into Game 4, he brings in Buchnevich while revamping the forecheck and neutral zone play. And it paid off big time.

            This isn’t panic, this is reading and reacting. Guy can’t win with you…

            • Walt says:

              The point I was trying to make, and it rubbed you the wrong way, he had to make adjustments, or the wrath of everyone on this, and every other site, along with management, would have been on him, quick like!!!!!!!

          • flatbush says:

            ADJUSTMENTS. Holden was a no brainer. And six of one hafe dozen whatever Buch for Glass. When is he going to address Kreider Stephan Hayes.I give Miller a pass he always gives 100%. Think he gassed! Kreider has the most talent tools of the other three; need a kick in the ass confrontation. No player will do it. AV? Stephan is another guy entitled. Take some ice away, he doesn’t use it anyway. Hayes should drop to 4th line. And never play on a special team until he shows some life like it matters. Than he has earned it. Started up very good and we bought that he dropped weight and got in better shape. What happened?
            Thats ADJUSTMENTS not taking a couple of guys out of the line up that don’t matter. The top glory guys get the credit but have responsibility and cant keep getting treated as untouchables when they perform consistently below their worth. Sorry Mc D is no firebrand capt. Listen to Him and AV in post game. Very low, no emotion, monotone . Twins. Ranger bunch of nice guys and my perception is no one wants to speak up cause if you do you have to put up.

            • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

              Press conference optics are meaningless. It tells you nothing about what goes on in the room. I don’t need to have a coach who snarls at the press or throws water bottles at fans in order to be convinced that a coach, a player or a team plays with emotion or not.

              Flatbush, I agree what the players you mentioned are “Untouchables”, but jerking them around now in order to send a message accomplishes nothing. That’s regular season stuff (which, when it happens, sends half this blog to the edge of the cliff btw!).

              Should Julien demote Max to the 4th line?

              You have to dance with who brought you. The team is the team. You can tweak a few things here and there and clean up some areas. But again, it’s up to these (thus far) overrated elite stars to start performing. If they don’t, and Hank can’t singledhandedly drag this team into the next round as has been the trend in most series over the past decade, then you re-evaluate over the summer and hopefully make some bold moves.

              Now is all about winning….with your most talented players leading the way.

              • frank barone says:

                These guys will either respond as proud athletes or show no character and wine. I believe they will respond. Worrying about them lying down is weak minded.

    • Richter1994 says:

      I would like to see Kampfer in as well.

  3. Walt says:

    As stated by others, the first half of the first period is crucial, we hold, and then start to score, games over, we win!!!!!

    Now to Kreider, 1/2 of the Boston Cream pies, great name who ever came up with it. Get the BS out of your head, crash the net, show some balloons if you have any, don’t let the French speaking press get under your skin, be a man, play your game. If you plant your huge frame in the paint area, let the weak defense work to get you out, give Price something to think about. Gallagher should be a role model for you, imagine if you played like that worm, I’d love you man!!!

    The rest of the so called awesome offense has to look at themselves and say, “am I giving it my all”, if not why? Everyone knows PO hockey is tighter checking, a lot less space, more physical, and the game gets quicker. Bottom line, get your acts together, show some pride, stand up and be accounted for!!!!!!! Go out and win it tonight…………….

    • Spozo says:

      I’m stuck watching the NBC feed due to blackouts. When Nash had that goaltender interference the NBS Sports crew replayed the Kreider Price incident. I swear it was killing them they had to wait 4 games for an interference call to play that. It’s all they talked about!

      • Jerry says:

        Me too Spozo. I was shaking my head when they played that Kreider thing. But did you notice; NBC has played a promo clip where Lemieux goes into a goalie (Minny goalie I believe) and no big deal. Afterall it’s Mario.

      • pas44 says:

        It didn’t look like Nash’s leg ever touched Price’s head, looked like a flop to me, but I am biased…

        LGR!

        • Jerry says:

          I agree pass. Nash definitely came in contact with Price’s body, but I don’t think he touched his head. That said, Nash could have made an effort to avoid Price but didn’t. And I was quite happy to see that.

          • Walt says:

            Jerry

            And it’s too bad that he didn’t ram into his head, aren’t they trying to do the same with Hank??? Let Price start looking over his shoulder to see who may be coming, and then we could laugh at Pierre on the Montreal gazette, if there is such a paper, for crying the blues??????????

            • Jerry says:

              Walt, while I’m in favor of making Price’s life difficult in his crease, I am not in favor of intentional head shots. I’d like to see our forwards play an aggressive game game around the Canadian’s net, but without cheap shots. I do agree he, Price, has been far too comfortable in net.

              • pas44 says:

                Hockey is a contact sport, I don’t think anyone is talking about running price, but driving hard to the net and making contact is needed.

                Fast pushed hard and stuffed the potato on him, Nash did the same, these are things that Price is not used too. It paid off and the Ranger MUST do this every chance they get.

                With this said, there’s going to be contact, I feel Price needs to move his head, but not as an act like he did to, makes him look cheap, but he is a HAB and thats that…

                I will say this, the HABS go nuts at every whistle doing whatever it takes to clear the house, something the Rangers do not do enough of for Hank!

              • Stove says:

                Gallagher ends up in our net multiple times each game on top of hank. We need to go after Price. No head shots but Kreider should be in his face all game.

          • Chris A says:

            Watch the play again, Price took a hard knee from Nash to the head.

            • pas44 says:

              I really didn’t see that, I saw the replays, it looks like Nash’s thigh cruses past Price’s nugget, and at about 4 inches away Prices goes into his OLEY act into the corner of the net…

              I’ll try to see it on the internet again to review…

              LGR!!!

    • Richter1994 says:

      First 5 to 10 minutes will tell the tale. If the Rangers play to the level of the Habs or even exceed it to start the game, I will feel real good about their chances.

      Adrian Dater tweet today: “Everyone knows that Shatty is signing with the Rangers.”

  4. amy says:

    tonight is pivotal get off to good start put a body in front of price so you take away his eyes and move bodies away from hank

  5. pas44 says:

    I am painting my nails so I don’t chew them off.

    OTT needs to be smacked!

    LGR!

  6. Peter says:

    Being up 3 – 2 is far better than being down 3 – 2.

    Make it so!

  7. Rangers Rock says:

    AV you foolish shit! He is screwing with the lines again. F him!

    • Chris F says:

      He put out fake lines at practice before game 3. It doesn’t mean that’ll be the starting lines.

  8. Leatherneck says:

    I am on the get rid of AV camp…blows my mind those who defend him think their opinion is the right one, so I say BS!!!! That’s your opinion and in MY opinion quite flawed. I see no light with this coach and lots of flaws. He is a regular season coach….Period. I do not wish him ill will but I do wish him gone.
    The Rangers have to start the game tonight on their toes and hit as often as possible. There must be 1 defenseman staying back and in front of the net to clear any Hab driving the net in the 1st 10 mins till things settle down.
    Special teams will be the key, so stay out of the box.
    Kreider must show up tonight
    Miller will break out tonight
    Play Kampfer

    • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

      Five playoff series wins in three Rangers seasons thus far. Two more than Torts had in five seasons. As many as Cat Francis had in ten seasons.

      Yep, the very definition of a regular season coach.

      I’m a supporter, but even I questioned the wisdom of giving him the extension and raise when they did. But once done, the message is clear. Barring the most unusual of developments that would suddenly emerge that weren’t in place three months ago, your “get rid of AV wish” is not likely to happen anytime soon.

      On the rest, I agree–although betting on Miller to definitely break out is not something I’d put any cash on. He’s never proven to be a playoff performer. If I were in Vegas, I’d bet on Kreider and Stepan over Miller because of their playoff pedigree.

      • Leatherneck says:

        On that note Keenan 4 playoff series wins in 1 season….yeah that makes sense….Trots never truly had depth like AV does….so… uh…yeah…lots of logic there triple E
        Let’s look at last season…..in the playoffs…..yeah that says a lot too.

        • Spozo says:

          At least you moved on from the AHL goaltender remarks.

        • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

          Keenan had a team that was loaded with super stars, future HOFers and guys with multiple SC rings. To compare that roster to anything AV has had in NY would be laughable.

          As for Torts (I’m assuming you mean Torts and not Trottier), it’s truly amazing how all the Torts fans make excuses for his NY shortcomings. On the depth question, I concede that the Rangers have more options now than they did under Torts. But are they quality options? Depth is meaningless if the depth isn’t all that good.

          Depth or not, Torts had plenty of talent to work with. He had Gabby, a sniper the likes of which AV has never had. He had Hank at his Vezina apex. He had Nash at his best in his final season. He had incredible leadership and two way play with Richards. He had a strong defensive core. He had plenty. And in 2012, as the #1 seed, he barely made it past the #8 Sens, a highly mediocre team. He goes 7 against a good but not great Caps team. Then his team is SO burnt out, they lose to a very inferior Devils team in the worst playoff loss post lockout–no question.

          Then he sends Kreider, arguably the only reason the Rangers didnt get upset by the Sens, to the minors the next season, and chases their most dangerous offensive weapon out of town because he wasn’t a good shot blocker. Brilliant asset management.

          Last year the Rangers were overrun by a juggernaut team. It happens. You conveniently forget Torts being overrun by the Caps in 2011 and the Bruins in 2013.

          AV has had his teams rally back from 3-1 deficits in back to back seasons. Never been done before in league history.

          Meanwhile, to the best of my knowledge, Torts is the only Rangers coach to blow a 3-1 series lead.

          But i get it….Torts growls, snarls, throws water bottles, so he gets a pass.

          • Leatherneck says:

            You realize you contradict yourself something silly triple E? Quite funny

            • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

              I always wish to improve myself. Please enlighten me where i have contradicted myself and I shall immediately correct the contradiction.

          • Walt says:

            E3

            How conveniently you forget we get the cup finals after Joel Ward took a 4 minute penalty, with less than 2 minutes in the game, we score on the PP to tie the game, and then another PP goal for the game winner. Luck, OK. How about the game seven, two years ago, when Stepan finally did something to shout about, scoring in the OT on the Caps. Luck, OK. What is his entire cup record, 2 games in wins, over losses, more of an indicator of this coach’s history.

            You always bring up Torts, who had half the talent, a younger defense that could play defense, but lost to a weaker Devils team, bad luck, OK. You seem to give AV all the benefit of the doubt, but never any other, Torts in particular. Talk about over rating people, you seem to think that AV walks on water, can’t do no wrong, and is the cats meow. E3, I hate to say this, but I’m of the opinion that AV is indeed a regular season coach, and chokes his chicken in the PO’s!!!!!!!!

            • Spozo says:

              In all fairness what would you call Matteau’s game 7 winner? Sometimes cup winners get some luck. Doesn’t remove their name from the trophy.

              • Walt says:

                No, the point is E3 makes this coach walk on water. He had more than his fair share of luck, and some wonderful teams, still comes up empty when it comes to cups!!!!!!

            • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

              Walt-

              Really, i dont see how you can go there on the luck factor. As Spozo said, what was Matteau’s goal? What was Richer’s almost goal just minutes before? What about all those totally fluky goals we scored in Vancouver in Games 3 and 4 I think it was? How about Lafayette’s almost goal in Game 7?

              You could look at any series and find “luck” moments, especially in closely contested series.

              You can look at record, but i think playoff wins and losses aren’t as relevant as playoff wins. As an extreme example, a coach that regularly sweeps a first round series but loses second round series in 7 games would have a winning pct of .636. A coach that wins the Stanley Cup by winning each series in 7 games would have a .571 winning pct. You tell me which record in that case is more impressive.

              No one remembers how many games you win a series in. What matters is whether you advance or not.

              As for the record, let’s look at all three of our coaches post-lockout as Rangers coaches.

              Renney– In three full seasons, averaged 97 points. Playoff winning pct .458. Won 2 playoff series in 3 springs.

              Torts– In four full seasons, averaged 96 points (includes the prorated lockout shortened season, but with it or without it, it’s still 96 points). Playoff winning pct .431. Won 3 playoff series in 5 springs (including the Spring he missed the playoffs–the only playoff miss since the full-season lockout). Overall career playoff winning pct– .473

              AV– In four full seasons, averaged 103 points. Playoff winning pct .509. To this point, has won 5 playoff series in 3 springs. Overall career playoff wining pct–.489

              By every statistical measure, not only has AV complied a far superior record than Torts as Rangers coach, even a case can be made that Renney had more success. So are you saying that Torts had a worse team than Renney, too?

              The statement you made that Torts had half the talent is a subjective one for sure, but I vehemently disagree. As illusatrated above, in 2012 and 2013 in particular, he had plenty of talent that was just as good as what AV has had.

              But let’s assume you are correct. The true measure come in the transition seasons. AV came in and guided a team to the playoffs that had, as its regulars, 15 of the same 19 players that Torts had. Yet Torts ’13 Playoff team flamed out in the second round and AV’s team went to the SCF.

              Conversely, in AV’s final season in Vancouver, AV had 59 points in the truncated season that if played to the full 82 calculates to 101. Torts comes in and the team sinks to 83 points, only to rebound the next season under Dejardins to 101 points.

              Add all this up, and what do you have? Post-lockout, AV has been the far more succesful coach than Torts, and it’s not even close.

              Last point…I’m not anti-Torts. He did a lot of good things here that go beyond the record, no doubt. And he gets full marks for a remarkable 2011-12 campaign, and all three playoff series wins. I just recoil at those (not saying you specifically) that try to distort his accomplishment. If one were just reading the blog and totally unaware of the actual record, you would think the Torts Era was this Golden Era of Rangers hockey, while the AV Years have been some dark period somehow.

              I just dont understand the over the top Torts love and the equally over the top AV hate.

              • Walt says:

                E3

                All the stats still prove that with great teams, here, and Vancouver, he isn’t a winner. Until he wins a cup, I could care less about all his regular season wins, and Presidents trophy. That and a buck gets you on the subway. I’m not a defender of Torts, or any other coach we had, I’m talking about this mule headed guy we call coach today!!!!!!!

              • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

                Never said he walks on water Walt. I’m saying he is a very good coach that has done real good things here with a good but hardly great team, and has been an upgrade over what we had before. That’s all I’ve ever said.

    • Rich S says:

      Bravo Leatherneck!!!!!! I think most of us have come to see this too!!!!

      • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

        Perhaps….but the GM and the President of the Rangers clearly have a very different take, and their opinion is the only one that counts. The “Fire AV” crowd will have to wait minimally another full season, probably two, before they get their wish.

        • Richter1994 says:

          AV will get next year unless the players get him fired this offseason like when they got Torts fired the last time. You know, less than 6 months after his extension. It’s only money to the Garden folk.

          • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

            Torts was a totally different deal. That wasn’t a “mega-extension” like what AV got. It would have to be an epic issue with the players. Highly improbable.

    • Richter1994 says:

      How come you make such a sensible post here and then you say “put Buch in for Kreider?”

      Does the name “Cybil” have any meaning for you?

  9. Chris F says:

    Emelin returns for the Habs.

  10. SalMerc says:

    If you don’t think this series is going 7 games, you are kidding yourselves.

    • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

      With a series tied at 2-2, the Rangers are 2-4 in their last six Game Fives. But ironically, they have ultimately won four of the last six game series when they lose Game 5. Why? Get it to Game 7, and in the pipes you have the greatest Game 7 goalie ever!

      It does suggest, as I’ve said before, that those who say the Rangers don’t handle adversity well (I’m looking at you Paul!) have it backwards. Adversity is their friend. It’s success they don’t handle well.

      Obviously, I want to win tonight so we can preserve our “road ice advantage”. Either way, if the Rangers win this series, it will be in 7…because that’s what always happens with these guys right? Nothing ever comes easy to this flawed group.

  11. HOF 19 says:

    This game can decide a lot………Hockey media people get most impressed by teams that see a opportunity to get an edge and KICK DOWN THE DOOR AND TAKE IT in a fashion that LEAVES NO DOUBT !!!!!……..So please do not blow this opportunity to take the EDGE…….LETS GO RANGERS !!!!!!!!!!

  12. Ray says:

    On #4, I totally agree. Odd how AV is perfectly comfortable playing a guy like Glass and then giving him only seven minutes of ice time, but he insists on defensemen that he can trust for at least fifteen. In truth, he has proven that, if used correctly, he can get nine good minutes out of Clendening. A lot better than 17 minutes out of Klein or Holden when your trust is based on delusion.

    On #5, sorry. Lundqvist has been fine in this series. But he is not carrying the team. McDonagh and Skjei (and maybe even Girardi) are far more important – imagine if both Klein and Holden played, much greater nightmare than Raanta.

    Compare Hank to Price. Price handles the puck better. Does it matter? Duh, consider the Montreal tactic against the power play – forcing the Rangers to dump, much more effective if your goalie can play it. Fewer rebounds from Price. More pressure on Hank in games 2 and 3, more on Price in Game 4, Game 1 a wash. Relatively even, all in all. A good showing, yes, considering how good Price is. But Hank is just doing his job, he is not the team.

    Giving kudos is a zero sum game, in a sense. Praising Hank is running down everyone else. Tell me that I could be one of the soon to be forgotten guys on a team Hank won the Cup for and maybe I’ll play like the Game 3 Rangers. McDonagh, Stepan, Kreider, Nash, Zuccarello deserve better.

  13. King Sieveqvist ! King Sieveqvist ! King Sieveqvist ! says:

    14 to go Sittoo

    • Richter1994 says:

      till the name change? lol

      even you have to admit that you were, what’s the word, wrong?

  14. lon says:

    This is For AV fans.

    AV is and has been one of the top five coaches in the NHL over the past 6
    years. As Yogi said, “you can look it up”. You’re entitled to your opinion, but not the facts.
    Look at what happened in Buffalo today. Coaching spots will open all over the
    league. Why do you think the sighed AV to an extension?
    Because he’s a damn good coach.
    Took an average team and made it a better than average team. What he did
    with the defense was a miracle