Archive for Musings

Jun
04

Mailbag: Draft trading scenarios

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Bobby Ryan. (Photo by Andre Ringuette/NHLI via Getty Images)

A few questions for the mailbag today, all revolving around trading up or down at the draft.

Josh asks (1 of 2): Think Chicago takes the 26, 28, and 48 for the 8 and the Hossa contract?

I like the thought process. Chicago is always up against the cap, and the Rangers happen to have oodles of it right now. Hossa carries another three years and $5.275 million on his deal, but he’s only owed $1 million a year for that duration. That said, Chicago balks at this for two reasons.

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pavel buchnevich

It’s the offseason, so of course that means mindless speculation and endless hypotheticals. I’m not hating on our national passtime by any means – I love conjecture and imagining things that totally won’t happen as thought exercises. One thing that came up on twitter recently however has me concerned, because while thought exercises and potential scenarios are important, we’ve also got to keep it in the realm of reality for any of it to be illuminating.

Without that grounding we either state the obvious over and over to the point where it lacks any utility, devolve into reactionary contrarianism, or begin to set an agenda that dominates the conversation once other people take it too seriously (this last bit implies that we here on the Rangers blogosphere are Thought Leaders, which of course we are). I’d like to address it head on: there are almost no good trade hypotheticals involving Pavel Buchnevich.

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jeff gorton

One of the major stories heading into the draft, other than who will be selected and who the Rangers will be trading, is whether the Rangers will make all their current selections in the draft. The Blueshirts have 10 picks in the draft, with 7 of them coming in the first three rounds. The only round in which they don’t make a selection is the 7th round (Ottawa in the Zibanejad trade).

With so many picks, and specifically two picks close together at the end of the first round, there is speculation the Rangers might try to package those picks to move up. It’s a popular theory. As is perhaps trading one of those picks to move back and grab more picks in the later rounds. It is, after all, a fairly deep draft.

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May
24

Mailbag: Sean Day, David Quinn, Draft

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sean day

Three questions for the mailbag this week. As always, use the widget on the right to email your questions for the mailbag.

Felix asks: With the plethora of high end defensemen in this year’s draft, how does Sean Day stack up against these guys, and does it make more sense to draft a forward instead?

This is a two part question, so let me answer the last bit first, and then get to Sean Day. I’ll explain more in a later question, but I don’t think the system status should dictate what the Rangers draft, especially at #9 overall. Take the best player available, no matter what.

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May
22

Some thoughts on David Quinn

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david quinn

Photo by Angela Rowlings – BU

The Rangers are all but assured to be naming BU’s David Quinn as their next coach. The official announcement hasn’t come yet, but trustworthy sources like Bob McKenzie and Elliotte Friedman have said this is basically a done deal.

It looks like Quinn wasn’t their top target. Jim Montgomery turned down a lot more money from the Rangers to go to Dallas. However Quinn does appear to be a nice consolation prize. As per usual, I have some thoughts.

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Categories : Coaching, Musings
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May
17

A Quick Word on Coaches

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Three of the four coaches still in the playoffs, and Peter Laviolette.

It has been an interesting spring for Rangers fans who have in recent years become accustomed to the hockey season lasting until around Memorial Day Weekend (and sometimes beyond).  Instead, the Blueshirts are at work off the ice, planning a rebuild that will hopefully serve as the foundation for another decade-plus of sustained playoff success and contention (and hopefully, the ultimate prize).

Yet it feels as though that process can’t really begin until one massive blank is filled in: the Head Coach.  But what if I told you that it doesn’t really matter who’s behind the bench on opening night come October?  Allow me to explain.

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Categories : Coaching, Musings, Offseason
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It’s a little bit dull around Rangerstown these days, given that our beloved Blueshirts did not make the playoffs. I’ve mentioned this on twitter a couple times, but in case that’s not your communicative medium of choice, it’s a kind of an empty feeling walking around midtown Manhattan, and Penn Station especially, without the buzz of the postseason in the air. I almost miss that dumb double-decker bus that does a loop of the lower 30s with all of the gaudy Rangers decorations and shouting Rangers fans on top of it (almost, but not actually).

Still, life, and the playoffs go on, and if you’ve been watching and taking notes (I haven’t actually been taking notes) then you may have made a few observations about what it takes to be successful in today’s NHL past the month of March. Or at least I have, so here’s a few thoughts. Feel free to share yours in the comments as well, because it’s always fun to take postseason hockey.

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May
05

Thoughts on a beautiful Saturday

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What are you doing inside on a day like this? Go out and play. Oh….you’re outside and reading this on your phone? Well played.

1. Good for Dan Girardi last night on his game winning goal. He took a beating around these parts, and I’ve always maintained that it was never about the guy (it wasn’t) it was about the role, contract, and declining play. It seems now that a good portion of that was the system as well. On a lower pairing, on a much more consistent and stable team, and he’s been doing fine. I still stand by what I say that the Rangers needed to buy him out. Just because it was needed for one team doesn’t mean he isn’t useful somewhere else.

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On Sunday, the NHL Draft Lottery was held, and the Rangers first round fate was decided.  When all the balls stopped popping, the Blueshirts ended up with the #9 overall pick.  The gang around here has done some really nice analyses and historical context of the pick, but I haven’t gotten a chance to weigh in, yet.  With that in mind, I have a few thoughts on this Friday morning.

1. Now, obviously we are looking at a talented player at number nine, especially in a deep draft. However, I think there is a natural emotional response of disappointment after what the fanbase went through this season.  That’s ok. I feel the same way.  After all the “almost” moments of the past few years to just have the bottom fall out beneath us, we deserve Rasmus Dahlin.  We deserve that Auston Matthews piece that gives us hope in a quick turnaround on the re-build.  It’s only natural.  Alas, it was not meant to be.

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Mats is still trying to understand golf

This might come as a surprise to you, but the New York Rangers did not make the playoffs this year. Though a rare, initially horrible shock to us fans, we can look at the silver lining. When you’re constantly in it, you don’t see certain things that you might from the outside.

It’s important to note the few positives right off the bat – for starters, this is an opportunity to get some rest for our oft-injured, overworked players. Think about Kevin Shattenkirk coming back refreshed, or how great Henrik Lundqvist’s tan will look. Also, a positive according to me, missing the playoffs essentially sealed Alain Vigneault’s fate.

There are a lot of things, though, that we couldn’t think about while constantly battling the Capitals and crushing their dreams of making it past the second round. Let’s look at some lessons learned thus far.

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