The Detroit Red Wings are coming through in the clutch for all those that want to watch the Traverse City Tournament. The Wings website (http://redwings.nhl.com/) will stream every single Traverse City Tournament game, regardless of team, for free. There are no geographical restrictions either. So if you want to watch, make sure you head on over there.
With all the World Cup of Hockey talk, the Traverse City Tournament has flown under the radar. The WCOH is the main culprit for this, but it’s also because before this year, there was no way to watch the games. The Red Wings are giving us all a treat. Well done, Detroit.
Well it’s almost time for the World Cup. It’s the first time the tournament has run since 2004 when Canada won it all. Team USA won the inaugural World Cup in 1996 on the back of Mike Richter, who was phenomenal in that tournament. The preseason games have been chippy, which is a welcome sight. Many were concerned that the players would gloss over this. That doesn’t appear to be the case. With real games starting soon, all eyes will be on this tournament.
- Team USA has surprised a few in the exhibition games, beating Canada (once in two games) and Finland, finishing the pre-tournament schedule with a 2-1 record. Most, including myself, expect Team USA to struggle due to a lack of scoring depth. That may still be the case, but for now, they are hanging in there.
- Team North America is fun to watch. They steamrolled Team Europe twice, and have one more exhibition game to go. They could surprise people in this tournament. Assuming they beat Finland in round robin play, a surprise win against Russia may not be that much of a surprise, launching them to the single elimination tournament.
The Rangers did a lot to improve this offseason. They completely retooled the bottom-six forwards and the penalty kill, and it appears they used some form of advanced statistical analysis in their decision making. While it appears the Rangers are set to have a better showing from their forwards, the defense remained largely untouched.
As it stands today, the Rangers will have substituted Brady Skjei for Keith Yandle and Dylan McIlrath/Nick Holden for Dan Boyle. Based off Alain Vigneault’s previous history, we are looking at these defensive pairs:
Due to my overwhelming excitement at the beginning of football season, today’s post will be a pre-season discombobulated musings. The World Cup preliminaries this past weekend show that the sport is quickly upon us. It brings up some pretty good questions about our Blueshirts.
- The World Cup is really fun, but can it be damaging? I caught some highlights from Friday night’s game and honestly wish I hadn’t. If a Ranger gets hurt, even a little banged up, I’m not sure I’m on the WCH-is-a-valid-reason-like-the-Olympics train.
The World Cup games are underway, even if it’s just pre-tournament games. There is finally some hockey on TV, which is always good. But the World Cup is drawing some negative attention from people who want it to fail. I see that point. So here are some musings on why I’m excited, and why I’m not, for the World Cup of Hockey.
Why I’m Excited
1.International hockey is always fun for me. It’s exciting to see players outside of their club situations, and the selection of players on each team means that each night is going to be filled with great hockey. There’s rich opportunity for compelling narrative too – will Canada continue their dominance in international hockey or will a team like North America make a splash? It’s just a great opportunity for great players to showcase their talents and hopefully bring glory to their country in the name of sport.
For the first time since 2004, the World Cup of Hockey has returned. This has been quite the polarizing event since it was announced. Many feel it is simply a cash grab by the NHL, risking injury prior to the regular season. Others are delighted that we have an early return for hockey and some interesting international competition between Olympic years (the NHL’s continued participation is a topic for a whole different post). Either way, we will see the puck drop a few weeks early this season.
Naturally, there has been quite a bit of hand wringing over roster decisions; Team USA’s archaic, backwater team building philosophy chief among them. This morning, though, I am here to talk about the goaltending for each team. In case you have been actively avoiding the tournament and its nuances, quick primer: there are eight teams competing, six of which are familiar. USA, Canada, Sweden, Russia, Finland and the Czech Republic are properly represented. The final two teams are Team North America, comprised of American and Canadian players, twenty-three years of age or younger, and Team Europe, which catches all European players not rostered with one of the other countries.
The 2017 season is right around the corner, and as the World Cup of Hockey begins we will finally have something new to talk about in regards to hockey. This comes right on time as I am absolutely drained of any ideas after this one for the near future.
While many of us are certainly intrigued at how the forward depth will shape up for the New York Rangers post training camp, many more fans are eager to see what move GM Jeff Gorton may have in play to fix up the defense. It has been a long anticipated move, combining the rumors on Kevin Shattenkirk, the “guaranteed” Rick Nash trade, young defensemen remaining unsigned, and that the Rangers seem to do their business in the shadows with moves nobody sees coming (I love you Brassard, stay golden). In any case, there are a lot of factors surrounding the Rangers, but sometimes there are management and advisory roles that need to be filled as well.
I hope everyone enjoyed their Labor Day Weekend. This summer flew by, didn’t it? It’s already September. It’s already cooled off a bit where windows can be opened without fear of melting, and there are already reports coming from World Cup training camps. Unbelievable. I think a nice musings is a good way to start off the short work week.
1. To address the rumors regarding Henrik Lundqvist, he is not injured. He said he took a puck to the ribs during a practice and is fine. He certainly did not hurt himself playing golf. And even if he did, it never seemed like it was a serious thing when the rumors broke.
2. Speaking of Lundqvist, I want to address the “Lundqvist is overpaid and is not good” crowd. You guys are small but as vocal as you are misinformed. Justin summed up the “Hank is on the decline” fallacy pretty nicely here. But here’s the thing: Last year Hank played behind of the worst defense he’s ever seen. And that defense actually got worse this offseason. It’s not Hank.
The below is a guest post written Dan McCurry, a long time reader of BSB (he actually was one of the winners in the Dylan McIlrath bobble-fist giveaway we did here a few years ago). Danny is a public middle school teacher in Brooklyn, teaching History, and is trying to get donations for his classroom through a nonprofit organization called Donors Choose. Most of his students and their families have a tough time making ends meet and through this project, he’s able to supply them with everything they need for the upcoming school year. All donations go towards supplies for his students.
Hello my fellow Rangers brethren! I’m Dan, 31 years old and I’ve been a Rangers fan for the last 22 years. I started playing hockey and falling in love with our beloved Blueshirts in 1994 when I was 9 years old, which as we all know, was a pretty magical year. I would love to go on about my Rangers fandom (like how my brothers and I have the ‘94 Stanley Cup video memorized word for word, you know you want to try one of Glenn Anderson’s mom’s famous salmon sandwiches!) but I’m actually here writing to ask all my Rangers fans for a little help.
It’s September, and while the NHL regular season is still somewhat far off, hockey is just around the corner. With the return of the World Cup of Hockey, fans will have some solid hockey to sate their appetites before things really get underway for the club teams in October. Although Becky has already weighed in with a great preview of the general action, I figured I’d do a deep dive into Team Sweden for a couple of reasons. The first is because our very own King, Henrik Lundqvist, is the team’s biggest star, and second is that I’m high on this team’s roster and think they’re my favorite to win it all (with North America being my dark horse pick).
Let’s start with the forwards. Some disappointing news came recently when it was announced that Henrik Zetterberg, a veteran of the squad, would be unable to play, but Mikael Backlund should prove to be a serviceable replacement. Along similar lines, Alex Steen, a highly effective two-way forward, will be replaced by Rickard Rakell, who is also more than capable of filling Steen’s shoes. From there, although there’s no real superstars (except for maybe Nicklas Backstrom) on the front end there are plenty of quality players ready to make a splash on the big stage. Recent Stanley Cup winner and former New York Ranger fan favorite Carl Hagelin’s on the team, as are the likes of Filip Forsberg, Patric Hornqvist, and Gabe Landeskog. All in all, while the team lacks the offensive firepower of say Canada, they should be able to put up points effectively, especially with the defense chipping in as well.