Game 54: Top pairing defenseman Tony DeAngelo

February 7, 2018, by

Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

The Rangers return home to what will likely be an…interesting…crowd tonight on national TV. The Rangers have won just three times in regulation since December (I think). They are just plain bad right now, partly due to systems, partly due to execution, and partly due to injuries. Dressing half an AHL roster certainly isn’t helping.

The interesting thing tonight is that Tony DeAngelo will play with Ryan McDonagh on the top pair. I have no idea how long that will last, but I’m setting the over/under at one period. With the way the rumors are flying around, this might be the last time we see the Rangers as we know them on the ice together.

Bruins Systems

For years, the Bruins had Claude Julien at the helm. But now it’s Bruce Cassidy. I have no insight into what style he will have the Bruins playing. Stay tuned.

I know I said this last time they played, and I’ve been slacking in this department. I also can’t watch the game, have family plans. I promise I’ll update this before the season ends. I’m bad at this.

For more on these systems, check out our Hockey Systems page.

Bruins Lines 

Brad Marchand-Patrice Bergeron-David Pastrnak
Jake Debrusk-David Krejci-Ryan Spooner
Danton Heinen-Riley Nash-David Backes
Tim Schaller-Sean Kuraly-Austin Czarnik

Zdeno Chara-Charlie McAvoy
Torey Krug-Brandon Carlo
Matt Grzelcyk (I’d like to buy a vowel)-Adam McQuaid

PP1: Marchand-Bergeron-Pastrnak-Heinen-Krug
PP2: Backes-Krejci-Debrusk–Where did all the vowels go?-McAvoy

Anton Khudobin gets the start.

Rangers Lines 

Rick NashMika ZibanejadMats Zuccarello
JT MillerDavid Desharnais-Vinny Lettieri
Michael GrabnerKevin Hayes-Jesper Fast
Cody McLeod-Peter Holland-Paul Carey

Ryan McDonagh–Tony DeAngelo
Brady SkjeiNick Holden
Brendan SmithSteven Kampfer

PP1: Nash-Zuccarello-Zibanejad-Miller-McDonagh
PP2: Hayes-Desharnais-Lettieri-Skjei-DeAngelo

Henrik Lundqvist gets the start.

Scratches/Injuries: Chris Kreider (blood clot), Kevin Shattenkirk (knee), Pavel Buchnevich (concussion), Jimmy Vesey (concussion), Marc Staal (cervical sprain)

Crazy Prediction: This will be the last time we see the coaching staff as currently assembled for the Rangers.

Game time is 8pm. Be sure to follow on our Snapchat for in-game shenanigans.

"Game 54: Top pairing defenseman Tony DeAngelo", 5 out of 5 based on 2 ratings.
Categories : Game Thread


  1. chrisqct says:

    We need more of the Zibanejad/Brassard deals, instead of almost every other deal Gorton has made. I liked some of the comparisons made here in prev articles to gauge the return. But felt they lacked the Gorton impact… meaning “taking less than what you should in return.” That is my biggest concern going into the deadline. Sure, they’re sellers now. But I’ll lose my mind if we get a bunch of Emerson Etem’s back in return.

    This deadline is going to make or break this team for the next 5 seasons or so. And there is no re-build until AV is gone. The guy has shown very little ability to develop rookies here in NY….let alone re-building a culture with new, young players.

    Gorton needs to pull this off!

    • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

      Not correct. Skjei and Hayes gotten immediate playing time in their first seasons. Zuc has said over and over that when he finally had a coach that believed in him (AV), his career took off. Kreider improved steadily in every season under AV after being buried by Torts. What you are saying is not accurate.

      Name me one young player that has failed to develop under AV that went on to shine elsewhere. You can’t because there are none.

      As for the rest I agree. Gorton needs to come away with a big haul here. The question is, does the league value the Rangers trade chips the way we think they do?

      • Walt says:

        The Rangers’ play in the defensive zone has been chaotic for much of the last three seasons in concert with a deterioration of talent. But AV couldn’t adapt his system to the players on his roster.

        When Chris Kreider stood up for McDonagh after the captain was run from behind by Steven Stamkos in Tampa Bay in Game 6 of the 2015 conference finals, No. 20 was rebuked by the coach for picking up an additional two minutes. When Brendan Smith stood up for Tony DeAngelo in an imbroglio in L.A. with Trevor Lewis on Jan. 21, he was chastised for picking up a bad penalty.

        Quotes from Brooks’ article today, and man how it’s affected the team, and their play. We are soft, and in your absences last week, we lost a few players to concussions, neck injury, all because we are told by the coach to turn the other cheek, and get manhandled. I don’t recall the player who said that his team takes liberties with the Rangers because they can, how sick is that.

        I have a three piece set in my jockstrap, AV is neutered, and demands a soft game, which will hurt someone badly someday. You can defend your clown counselor, but in my book he is a disaster.

        • Spozo says:

          “There is much internal respect for Vigneault, who has earned it by coaching the team to the NHL’s sixth-best regular-season record over the first four years of his tenure while winning what is tied for the second-most playoff series victories over that same span. The fact that the Blueshirts have attained that level of success without a single player on either the first- or second All-Star team has not gone unnoticed or unappreciated, and nor should it.”

          I can cherry pick quotes from the same article to further my point too Walt.

          • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

            This is why Brooks is such a great hockey writer. He isn’t always right but for the most part, I think he is usually pretty fair in his analysis. I can’t find much fault in what he said in tonight’s column.

            I happen to agree more with the quote Spozo cited than the points Walt brought up. All the AViHaters conveniently forget that, as Brooks mentioned, this coach has had plenty of success despite having very little to work with for most of his tenure here—especially this year with a team that has really never been fully healhthy all season. Good for Brooks for pointing that out.

            But Brooks made other valid points as well, and it’s more than fair to question whether AV is the right guy going forward. As I said earlier, IMO, it will depend on whether he still has the hearts and minds of the room and/or whether there is a chance to upgrade the HC position. It will likely not be some over the top angry response of “fire the bum” that we see all too often out here that I doubt anyone in the front office shares.

            Then again, with the way this game is going, AV might not make it to the third period. 🙂

            • Walt says:

              With three different defensive coaches, in three years, and the same results, come on man you can’t be blind? We’ll see how much respect he gets at year end………

              • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

                Talent matters Walt. Again, the Rangers have had ZERO players….ZERO…as first or second team all-stars. They just haven’t been nearly good enough, regardless of the coaches.

                And right now, the Rangers don’t have nearly enough to compete at all.

              • wwpd says:

                When the rangers had one of the best defense in the Nhl under tortorella, people still complained about his system. Some folks yp u just can’t please 🙂

              • Walt says:


                Your right they can’t compete, no #1 picks four years in a row!!! How far did your ideas take us? Have a good day just the same…….

              • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

                Walt, these are not “my ideas”. This is the way pretty much every team operates. When you’re terrible, you keep your picks and in fact trade current assets to add more future options. When you’re in contention, you are willing to part with some of that future to get closer. When you are REALLY close, as the Rangers were in 2014 and 2015, you go all in while the window is open to you. This isnt “my idea”. It’s not a Rangers thing. It’s pretty much SOP for every team in every sport. No one takes the extreme view that you have advocated for that a team NEVER will EVER trade futures for players that will help you now.

                The need to go all in became even more pronounced for the Rangers when they completely blew their drafts from 1998-2005, when they had favorable draft position every year and came away empty every time. That left them with the “good but not great” group we have seen for most of the past decade. So in order to maximize that window, they had no choice but to double down even more.

                Now, the bill has come due—as it does for every team eventually. So I’m all in with your approach. Time to trade for futures. But this time…..they MUST bring in some real stars, not the pretend stars everyone overrates out here. If they don’t, then the cycle will repeat itself again.

            • Bloomer says:

              When fans look back at AVs tenue with the New York Rangers, he will be remembered as a good coach. Just not a great coach. A bridesmaid but never a bride. Like his stint in Vancouver he leaves behind a team in disarray.

              He will soon be moving on to a new team with budding stars. He will pull out all the stops to take that team to the promise land and and a chance to sippage from Lord Stanleys Cup.

              But we all know how that turns out. WB Eddie.

        • joe cafardo says:

          Walt…well said. None of us here want a return of 1975. On the other hand…Pete Townshend says it well..”.you slap one cheek I wont turn the other”. AV has created a context for his guys to get the crap beaten out of them. Its actually sad.

      • chrisqct says:

        I didn’t say never or none…. just very little. You named 2 rookies (Zuc and Kreider were not rookies). That fits under very little.

        AV is not horrible, but not who I’d want behind the bench during a re-build where there could be a lot of new and younger faces around. AV is a good coach for a team that is close to a Cup. But I don’t think he’s well suited to build a team culture from the ground up with younger and less experienced players.

  2. King Sieveqvist ! King Sieveqvist ! says:

    At least we’ll look good tonight

  3. JOE D says:

    Can’t wait to see McAngelo!

  4. Spozo says:

    Yes I know it was a 3 on 1 caused by a bad offensive turnover by Smith. And yes the Bruins probably score regardless of how he plays it but what the hell was Deangelo doing on that goal?

  5. Leatherneck says:

    Oh Leaky Leaky…..you may be the savior after all….for the Dahlin sweep steaks….now we need Grabner to score…give up another goal….Zukey to score

    • King Sieveqvist ! King Sieveqvist ! says:

      Bad goal at a bad time

    • roadrider says:

      Without Lundqvist the Rangers would be getting blown out in every game by 5 or 6 goals. They’d be behind by a lot more than 3-1 without him in this one.

      But keep admiring that green sky in your private universe.

      • King Sieveqvist ! King Sieveqvist ! says:

        Hmmm … What’s the backup goalie on Boston’s name ? Vezina something … He’s making some good saves … If not for him we would be up a goal or two!

        • Leatherneck says:

          preach it….As we know we Leaky fans….there is always an excuse for him…this guy….that guy….yup…Khoudobin made much tougher saves…..if not for him it would be 4-4

        • roadrider says:

          Only if Henrik was doing his thing for our guys.

  6. roadrider says:

    D’Angelo’s not doing himself any favors tonight.

    • odielicious says:

      There is that name again that we traded an established center with grit and skill, and a really good backup. But that trade cannot be judged cause it is too early.

      Become a cellar dweller for 3 seasons and see what you can get in picks and trades. And hope you hit a couple of bull’s eyes.

      Lets develop our farm system to be a competitive team with a winning mentality.

      This season is a wrap. Good night all!

  7. Leatherneck says:

    And to the pine he goes

  8. roadrider says:

    I should have watched Mystery Alaska on the NHL Network instead of this game. At least the Rangers won that game.

  9. King Sieveqvist ! King Sieveqvist ! says:

    Backup guy is making some huge saves

    • roadrider says:

      He also has a much better team in front of him.

    • King Sieveqvist ! King Sieveqvist ! says:

      Guess you missed the two rebound shots he recovered on and made big stops … And actually I think the Rangers had way better chances so far this game at the end of two …. Just all the chances Boston had went in

      • roadrider says:

        I guess you missed D’Angelo getting undressed on that “nice” goal, no one around Chara (after the puck remained in the Rangers’ zone for over a minute), the 3-on-1 caused by Smith’s cough up and D’Angelo failing to cover any one or play the puck, and I could go on and on. Was this Lundqvists’s best game? No. But he’s hardly the only reason the Rangers are getting blown out here. The team in front of him is just awful.

        The Rangers had some good chances in the first part of the first period. After that its been mostly Bruins.

  10. Leatherneck says:

    Leaky….waive your NTC/NMC…..we need to build a team and you are no longer a part of the future

    your contract sucks now
    you won’t win a Cup here
    you can no longer be masked for your shortcomings either
    You will help the team in a trade and a chance for the cup
    you just got to go honcho

    Make it a win win win….(Leaky…3 wins in that statement)

    Who wants my Mcfarlane Leaky dudes….I have the winter classic one too

  11. Chas says:

    I guess the season is officially over for the Rangers. The ‘players’ have packed their bags and are heading to the golf course. I have followed this team since I was a kid, almost 70 now, and I have never seen a Ranger team quit the way this one has.

    Back up the truck and take offers. They can all go, including this columns core players. Hayes must have the best puck possession numbers in the league. All I ever see him doing lately is skating in circles in the o-zone. Are the Ice Capades coming to town. Miller is doing nothing. This is becoming the norm unfortunately. Great another Boston power play. Brutal!

    • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

      Chas, I respect the years you have followed the Rangers. I’ve been following them for 50

    • Eddie!Eddie!Eddie! says:

      Chas, I respect the years you have followed the Rangers. I’ve been following them for 50 years. I think you are being a bit over the top. The effort isnt the issue. This team is ravaged with injuries, they have no star power beyond their goalie. Even at their healthiest and optimum, they were never going to be more than a borderline playoff team this year.

      You are forgetting a lot of really awful teams of you think this one has “quit” worse than some of the brutal teams we saw 1975-78, 1984-85, 1998-2004. Now those were truly brutal.

      • Ranger17 says:

        3E been Rangers fan for 68 years now , agree with you on the teams that quit . Last team with any star power to talk about was the Cup team . We can not get the same return for the up coming fire sale that we got when we traded Leetch to TO , just can not happen . I am 77 yrs old as of now and i hope to see the Cup raised again before i check out LGR LGR LGR

        • odielicious says:

          Respect to all of you. I hope you are wrong and I hope we get a ton of picks and players but deep down I know you are right.

          This should be a 3 year rebuild in the best case scenario. But we need to be a cellar dweller for the next 2 and half months and hope we get slotted in the lottery. While still piling picks up from our UFA’s.

  12. odielicious says:

    Hank flat out sucked tonight! Wow he has been bad these last 2 nights. I am not a hank hater but damn he looks off. This is a completely different game if he doesn’t let that softie in that made it 3-1 to start the second. I am shocked it isn’t 10-1 at this point cause most of the guys have simply stopped playing.

    Gorton Gecko you need to make these trades now so I don’t have to watch this embarrassing team. This is just so bad a effort these players simply have quit.

    • Leatherneck says:

      I am not a hank hater either….but I do love to F with his fans…..What I do hate is the bias he got

    • roadrider says:

      Eh, he was a off his best game tonight but still made some big saves in the first period. You’re out to lunch on the Dallas game. Lundqvist made 39 saves in that one! 21 in the first period alone IIRC. Without him that game is as bad a blowout or worse than tonight’s game.

      No one can be Superman every night. After a while it wears a guy down.

  13. Leatherneck says:

    Pav is making the saves

  14. Eugene says:

    ADA top pairing… never happened

  15. wwpd says:

    Why is hank still starting every game ? Give the dude some rest.

  16. Ranger17 says:

    Every player in the line up tonight was a minus , don’t think that happens too often on any team . They just stopped playing , sad to see from any pro team in any sport where they are set for life when they retire in their thirties just sad to watch . Even if you have given up on the Coach what about the fans sitting in the stands paying to see a Hockey game played on the ice . All i can say is WOW

    • odielicious says:

      I really like you. You don’t say alot but when you do say something it has a real truth to it.

      This was right up there with that Islanders performance. Just embarrassing all around.

      I really am blaming management more then the players. You can’t expect players to not be pissed when you disposed of Giradi and Stepan the way this front office did. Those 2 plus Mac and Staal were the entire leadership group of this team. Then throw in Smith just doing his thing out there and having no commitment to the team but getting the same level of pay as Mack. It is a slap in his face and in all the players faces who followed him. I never like the Shattenkirk signing for the same reason. You can’t have your Captain making less money then a guy you signed as a free agent. How would you feel if someone from outside your company that you started with a few others… comes in and starts making more money then you. And to boot he is not as good as you. It is one thing to give Staal the money they did and Giradi, but some clown free agent that gets called out by a ex coach and then throws up a negative 3 that night. I know there will always be shattenkirk lovers but in my eyes he just the next version of Yandle.