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Tomorrow’s game in Buffalo postponed (Moved to Feb. 20)

Update (11/21): The game has been moved to Friday, February 20.

Original Post (11/20): As expected, tomorrow night’s game against the Buffalo Sabres, in Buffalo, has been postponed. Buffalo is getting buried under snow at the moment, and were expect 150-180 inches. No makeup date has been announced.

I would like to point out that 180 inches of snow is 15 feet of snow. FIFTEEN FEET.

Breaking down Kevin Klein’s great start

Klein is off to a pretty good start.

Klein is off to a pretty good start.

If you’ve been around these parts long, you know that, prior to this season, we weren’t the biggest fans of Kevin Klein. It was nothing personal, we just felt there were better options out there. He was certainly serviceable, but for that contract, the Rangers could probably have done better. It wasn’t an uncommon or unpopular opinion either.

Then this season happened. The injuries mounted, and Klein was forced into a top-four role for an extended period of time. Klein has responded by tying his career high in goals just 18 games into the season (4), and is on pace to shatter his career high in points (21). All that while showing improvement in his possession numbers, despite being paired with Marc Staal (more on that later).

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Why Dominic Moore deserves your NHL All Star Game votes

Moore.

Moore.

If you missed it yesterday on Twitter, a good number of Rangers bloggers, ourselves included, are beginning a campaign to have Dominic Moore get enough votes to make the 2015 NHL All Star Game. Moore is probably the single most unsung hero on the New York Rangers at the moment, and it’s guys like Moore that rarely garner NHL All Star Game votes because they don’t rack up points. Martin broke down his fantastic start to the season, but the appreciation for Moore goes deeper.

Moore, who rejoined the Rangers last year after taking a season off to cope with the death of his wife, has been the one steadying force on the bottom six this season. Originally slated to be the 4C, he played up a role as the 3C when the Rangers dealt with the Derek Stepan injury. Players like Chris Mueller and Kevin Hayes played the 4C role, although Hayes and Moore flipped occasionally. But Moore’s true spot is the 4C, and he’s one of the best in the game.

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BSB FanDuel: 11/20

Here is the info for today’s FanDuel league: Sign up here, the league link is here.

For those unfamiliar with Fanduel, you are given $55,000 to construct a team of 2 LW, 2 RW, 2 C, 2 D, and 1 G. The goal is to find some good bargains (my advice is to save money on defense and spend big on offense) and save money for some stars you know will put up points. High fantasy points per game (FPG) with low cost is a good way to go, but look for streaks as well.

Rotowire has a lineup optimizer, as does DangleFactory. They are good resources if this intrigues you, or you’re new to daily fantasy sports.

As always, if the league fills up before you can get in, let me know in the comments. I leave the league size at 10 people for now to ensure it fills up. If there is more interest, I will expand the size as this continues.

Musings: Consistency, Consistency, Consistency

Talbot.

The one thing we’ve come to expect of our hockey clubs in New York is consistency. With the New York Rangers, that consistency, at least in the opening few months of the season, is defined as consistently inconsistent. It’s a bit of a running joke, but it’s alarmingly true. Last night’s game was a prime example of how this club can play when they don’t play down to their competition. They did just that when they lose to the Toronto Maple Leafs, Edmonton Oilers, and Colorado Avalanche, all pretty bad teams.

Sure, you can blame the injuries to the blue line, and no team has really suffered injuries to the extent the Rangers have, but all teams do deal with injuries. You can point to the Derek Stepan injury, which led to an even more massive hole at center than initially predicted –by us– at the beginning of the season. But the Rangers have an opportunity now to put that inconsistency behind them with a relatively easy schedule to close out the month. Of course, being consistently inconsistent, you never know.

On to the musings:

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Rangers defense shows up, Talbot blanks Flyers

Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

Photo by Elsa/Getty Images

The New York Rangers defense played an excellent game last night, doing a good job of keeping the Philadelphia Flyers to the outside for 31 chances –all stopped by Cam Talbot– en route to a 2-0 blanking on national television. Talbot was also excellent, stopping 13 of those 31 in the third period to preserve the 2-0 lead. The effort last night was a complete 180 from Tuesday’s against the Tampa Bay Lightning, and if not for Steve Mason, this would have been a lot better than 2-0.

Kevin Klein continued his usual scoring ways, notching the eventual game winner in the first period after a blown coverage by Wayne Simmonds. Rick Nash gave the Rangers a cushion on the powerplay, putting home an easy goal after a pretty sweet passing play with Derek Stepan and Martin St. Louis. Dominic Moore, who won’t show up on the scoreboard, was sensational as well.

On to the goals:

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Game 19: Home whites for Philly

Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Perhaps the New York Rangers just need to get a game in against a rival to break their current slump. The Philadelphia Flyers are that kind of team, and perhaps the Rangers will show up for this one. Perhaps, since the Flyers are shorthanded –without Claude Giroux– the Rangers will dominate the game. It’s a lot of “perhaps” because we really don’t know which team will show up.

The Flyers play a 2-1-2 forecheck, and once they get a late lead, they switch to a more conservative 1-1-3 left wing lock. In their own zone, the Flyers play a mix of zone and man-on-man defense, depending on puck location.On special teams, the Flyers run a 1-3-1 and an umbrella power play and a diamond force penalty kill with the strong side forward looking to pressure the point.

Rangers lineup:

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Lineup notes: Fast/Duclair in; Stempniak day-to-day

Per Steve Zipay, Lee Stempniak is out tonight, and Alain Vigneault doesn’t think it is a long-term issue. That means both Anthony Duclair and Jesper Fast will play tonight, on the third and fourth lines, respectively. Per Zipay, the lines at practice yesterday:

Rick Nash-Derick Brassard-Mats Zuccarello
Chris Kreider-Derek Stepan-Martin St. Louis
Carl Hagelin-Kevin Hayes-Anthony Duclair
Tanner Glass-Dominic Moore-Jesper Fast

BSB FanDuel: 11/18

Here is the info for today’s FanDuel league: Sign up here, the league link is here.

For those unfamiliar with Fanduel, you are given $55,000 to construct a team of 2 LW, 2 RW, 2 C, 2 D, and 1 G. The goal is to find some good bargains (my advice is to save money on defense and spend big on offense) and save money for some stars you know will put up points. High fantasy points per game (FPG) with low cost is a good way to go, but look for streaks as well (for example. Johnny Boychuck is not going to continue at his pace).

Rotowire has a lineup optimizer, as does DangleFactory. They are good resources if this intrigues you, but you’re new to daily fantasy sports.

As always, if the league fills up before you can get in, let me know in the comments. I leave the league size at 10 people for now to ensure it fills up. If there is more interest, I will expand the size as this continues.

NHL kills dry scrape, finally

The NHL has finally killed the dry scrape of the ice between the third period and overtime of tie games. The reasons for killing it were obvious: It took too long and the crowd died after it. The last dry scrape will be done on Saturday.

Also, the phrase “dry scrape” sounds horrible. It sounds like an invasive test at a doctor’s office where you walk funny afterwards.