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Thanksgiving Day open thread

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Happy Thanksgiving everyone! We here at BSB are very thankful for all of you. Without you, we wouldn’t be going on 9 years of blogging about the Rangers. Enjoy the day.

Use this as your open thread today. Keep the commenting guidelines in mind.

Categories : Open Thread
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kevin hayes

Photo by Gregg Forwerck/NHLI via Getty Images

The Rangers travel to Raleigh today to take on the Hurricanes, a team that is a lot better than you think. The Canes are one of the teams the Rangers need to leapfrog to make the playoffs, and are one of the top #fancystats darlings of the league. They are built very well. They do lack elite level talent though, especially in net, which has had an impact in the standings.

The Blueshirts are going to be without Ryan McDonagh today, who did not travel to Carolina with an ab injury. Steven Kampfer will dress on the third pair, while Brendan Smith moves up to the top pair. David Desharnais will also return to the lineup after a one game absence (thus proving AV does make lineup changes following a win). This isn’t a must-win, but it’s a would-be-really-nice-to-win, since it’s a four point swing game.

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Categories : Game Thread
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Defense Wins Championships

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ryan mcdonagh

The below post was written by Rob Luker. Rob used to write for Blueshirt Banter, but retired for a while. He sent me this and I was more than happy to post it. You should be following him on Twitter here. He is a great follow with tons of good hockey insight. He also wrote this article from the summer.

I presume most or all of you have seen the recent Progressive Insurance Dad Support group commercial? There’s a little bit that applies to the Rangers, at the moment:

“Next thing you know I’m telling strangers that defense wins championships … well it does.”

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Categories : Analysis
Comments (22)

A bit of surprising news here, as Ryan McDonagh will not be accompanying the team to Carolina for their game tomorrow night against the Hurricanes. He has an ab strain that he’s been dealing with for a good portion of the year. Nick Holden is skating with Brendan Smith on the top pair. Steven Kampfer will be with Marc Staal. Kevin Hayes replaced McDonagh on the powerplay.

The only other lineup change is that David Desharnais will be back in for Paul Carey. That was relatively expected.

Categories : Injuries
Comments (58)

vinny lettieri

With each passing game, the desperate need for a 3C intensifies. Last night, with David Desharnais struggling, the Rangers shuffled the lineup, putting Paul Carey into the mix. This is the same Paul Carey that Alain Vigneault passed over in favor of 11F/7D earlier in the season.

As it sits right now, Desharnais is the 3C (sometimes masquerading as a 2C) and Carey is the 13F. When one struggles, the other is in the lineup. That’s not the most ideal scenario. Replacing Derek Stepan with literally nothing was not a smart move. While we wait for a potential trade, a move from within may be the best bet in the short term.

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Categories : Prospects
Comments (63)

AP Photo/Seth Wenig

The Rangers were looking to get back on track after losing two in a row, and did just that against Ottawa last night. The Rangers played strong defensive hockey (not perfect, but it’ll do) and made the most of their chances in the 3-0 win. They club really cemented the win after a brilliant PK after the Brendan Smith major/game misconduct.

The Rangers got a big two points against a team they may be fighting for a playoff spot down the road. It may not seem important in November, but it’s a four point swing against a potential playoff team. At this juncture, with how the Rangers have played, every point and every swing counts.

On to the goals:

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Categories : Game Wrap-ups
Comments (30)
jesper fast

Photo Credit: Getty Images / Bruce Bennett

The Rangers are back home tonight after getting swept in their short two game road trip to take on the Ottawa Senators. They will be looking for some form of revenge against the Sens, who ousted the Rangers from the playoffs last year.

The Rangers are hanging around at .500, but that won’t be good enough (obviously) to move the needle among the fans. They need to start playing 60 minutes of hockey consistently. I can’t believe that is an actual problem for this team, but it is.

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Categories : Game Thread
Comments (23)

Chytil nets two in return, Pack win

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Hartford Wolf Pack 4, Utica Comets 1

Utica, NY, November 18, 2017 – A pair of rookies, Filip Chytil, with two goals, and Vinni Lettieri, with a goal and two assists, led the Hartford Wolf Pack to a 4-1 win over the Utica Comets Saturday night at the Adirondack Bank Center.

Another first-year pro, Gabriel Fontaine, also scored for the Wolf Pack, posting his first pro point, as Hartford snapped an 0-1-2-0 streak.

“I thought we were able to produce a lot of chances from our speed,” Wolf Pack head coach Keith McCambridge said. “I thought that game was probably one of our fastest, with regards to coming through the neutral zone, getting on the puck in the offensive zone, and our execution being cleaner on our breakouts. And the one thing that really jumps out is the third period, being able to do a real good job playing with the lead.”

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Categories : AHL
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The dreaded middle

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alain vigneault

The Rangers have cooled off somewhat from their hot streak, and we’re once again seeing the flaws inherent in the structure of this team and the execution of their game. Although the loss against Columbus was primarily due to Sergei Bobrovsky’s phenomenal night, the previous game against Chicago had a lot to do with their inability to play a full 60 minutes. Whether it’s due to the players in the lineup, the coach who sends them out onto the ice, or the GM who put together the lineup the Rangers are headed towards a serious predicament: the dreaded middle.

See, if there’s one thing you don’t want to be in today’s NHL, especially considering the top tier talent available in the early picks of next year’s draft, it’s just ok. If you’re good enough to make the playoffs but not good enough to contend, then you just miss out on a better draft pick. Similarly, if you’re bad enough to miss the playoffs but not all that bad compared to the rest of the early golf crowd, then the draft pick you end up getting won’t move the needle too terribly much. From a fan perspective too it’s kind of disappointing – at least if you’re watching your team lose a lot of games you know that somewhere down the line, and maybe as soon as the following year, you’ll be watching something good. Nobody wants to be the Carolina Hurricanes (sorry Canes fam, you’re still my second team anyways), good enough to make people say “next year should be fun” but bad enough that that next year actually isn’t.

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Categories : Uncategorized
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Rochester Americans 4, Hartford Wolf Pack 2

Rochester, NY, November 17, 2017 – C.J. Smith had two goals and two assists Friday night at the Blue Cross Arena at the Rochester War Memorial, to lead the Rochester Americans to a 4-2 win over the Hartford Wolf Pack.

The loss was the first in regulation in five games for the Wolf Pack, who had been 2-0-2-0 in their previous four games. Ryan Sproul had his first Wolf Pack goal, and added an assist, and fellow defenseman John Gilmour also scored for Hartford. Brendan Guhle and Hudson Fasching had the other Rochester goals, and Colin Blackwell had two assists.

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Categories : AHL
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