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The Rangers played very poorly last night. To put it bluntly, they stunk up the joint so bad, I’m smelling it across the Hudson. Let’s check in on how the team is doing right now:

The game was, as usual, a total cluster and yet in some ways, totally predictable. The Rangers played roughly 1/3 of this game, perhaps thinking this is still practice? But maybe this is just how they’re coached at this point, since they had a habit of doing this last year as well, except they managed to win these games that they’re losing in 2017. Read More→

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Scouting Alex Georgiev

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alex georgiev

When teams invite players to their prospect development camp, it is rare to expect much from the players. After all they went undrafted, and usually for a feasible reason. But there was one name that stood out on this year’s list. Alexander Georgiev, a talented goalie prospect in Liiga was among the invites for the Rangers only weeks after they didn’t retain Magnus Hellberg and Mackenzie Skapski. The Rangers signed him late last night.

Georgiev is a name that is known among the European hockey fans, he although Russian, has been playing in the Finnish league to play against pro men since he was 19 years old and over the last 3 years has taken strides in that league along with significant international tournament exposure.

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A Window into Jeff Gorton’s Mind

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jeff gorton

Now that we’re knee deep in the Stanley Cup Final, and it’s looking like the Penguins could do the damn thing, it’s naturally time to start worrying about what comes next. After all, who actually likes watching hockey anyways – it’s all about the crazy offseason machinations leading up to October, right? All jokes aside though, in about two weeks we’ll have a pretty solid look at what GM Jeff Gorton’s general roster construction philosophy is, and that’s a pretty big deal, so here’s a look at a few key dates coming up that’ll give us that inside perspective.

First, and perhaps most consequential, is the buyout period that opens on June 15th. Here is where we’ll see if Gorton has it in him to cut ties with one (or both) of the Rangers’s stalwart defensemen/black hole contracts in Dan Girardi and Marc Staal. I’m fairly certain at least one of them gets bought out, but nonetheless we’ll see whether Gorton really does value speed and skill as much as he seems to on the forward side of things, and whether he gets how addition by subtraction works. It’ll also be telling to see if he buys out both or not – maybe indicating that a trade is still possible for the Wonder Twin left standing (or that he’ll end up making the roster in October, but that’s less exciting).

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A Redditor sent this to me just now, and asked me to share his 9-year-old’s letter to Henrik Lundqvist. It’s truly a heartwarming letter, and definitely the best thing you’ll read today.

I hope you get to meet him, Cameron.

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The question of whether the Rangers could flip the proverbial switch had been asked, rightly, of a team that had little to play for over the last six weeks of the regular season. It took about a period, but the Rangers did just that, playing a very solid road game and taking a 1-0 series lead over the favored Canadiens, winning game one by the final score of 2-0.

The winning goal came from an unlikely source: Tanner Glass.   Glass has been a lightning rod for debate among the Blueshirts faithful since his acquisition, but there was no questioning his impact on this game. Read More→

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Brendan Gallagher and Andrew Shaw will make life miserable for Henrik Lundqvist

New York’s group of forwards is surely better than 12th-best in the playoff field, but you can throw the team’s gaudy offensive stats out the window heading into this series.

The great equalizer, as the Blueshirts well know, is goaltending and Carey Price has been locked in for the last several weeks after an inauspicious start to the season.

So though this matchup is probably where New York should enjoy its biggest edge over Montreal, it would be foolish to expect the Blueshirts to simply outgun the Canadiens. Read More→

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Game 80: Resting the stars

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Disclaimer: I know I’m trolling with this gif. It was a while ago and it’s still hilarious. Even the staunchest Girardi supporters have to find this to be funny. If it makes you feel any better, in one of my games I covered the puck (I’m a goalie), and shuffled it from my glove to someone who I thought was on my time. He was not. Empty net. I laugh about it now.

The Rangers are in Washington tonight to take on the Eastern Conference favorites. This is the cream of the crop. The team that is likely to come out of the East. Everything is coming up Capitals lately. Guaranteed to win the East. I think if I say this enough, I can curse them.

Tonight is another night where the Rangers take precautions and rest their stars. Rick Nash, Mats Zuccarello, Ryan McDonagh, and Jesper Fast (albeit not a star) are all scratched tonight. The Caps are dressing most of their ‘A’ roster, as they can clinch the President’s Trophy with a win.

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Game 75: Boy the Kings are a mess

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matt puempel mats zuccarello

AP Photo/Frank Franklin II

The Rangers are out West tonight, taking on the LA Kings. This is not the same Kings team that has been perennial Cup contenders. This Kings team is old, slow, and is not making the playoffs. They are a product of bad contracts and a misunderstanding of how the game has evolved to speed and skill over toughness. Their time came (two Cups) and has since left.

As for the Rangers, they are starting to get healthy. Dan Girardi returns tonight. Henrik Lundqvist will return tomorrow. Kevin Klein is coming back on this trip. The Blueshirts have a rare opportunity to get the injured players up to speed while resting some others than may need a game or two off. These games –at least the results– are meaningless. What matters most is process. Forecheck, good defense, better special teams. Get that working, and there is long term success waiting.

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brady skjei

Photo: Jim McIsaac/Newsday

The Rangers lost to the Isles last night, making it 0-5-2 at home in the last seven games. This while blowing a third period lead as well. But it wasn’t all bad. The Rangers looked pretty good, just had some bad bounces. There are some gripes, sure. But honestly these games are meaningless at this point. I was at the game, so no goal breakdown. On to the tweets.

I’m leading with my own tweet because, what gives? Is it because it was an 8pm start? MSG was empty for a Rangers/Isles game.

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Photo: Jim McIsaac

I was at the game last night, so there is no goal breakdown. With that in mind, I enjoy breaking out these Twitter breakdowns here and there. So let’s have at it.

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