flagyl 100

Why did the Rangers keep Dan Girardi over Anton Stralman?

I received one question this week in the mailbag, and it was a doozy, so this entire post is dedicated to it. As always, email me if you have any questions, and I’ll be sure to address each one.

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America

BrooklynVic asks: Why did the Rangers keep Dan Girardi over Anton Stralman? How could our valuation of Stralman been so undervalued considering how he is playing now? 

BV, this is a loaded question, to which we can break it down into several parts. Addressing the first part is the easy part: Keeping Girardi over Stralman had a lot to do with perceived value versus market value, and the writing was on the wall when Stralman rejected the Rangers offer of three years, $9 million. The Rangers valued him at  $4 million, which is what Larry Brooks reported. That was $500,000 less than what he got from Tampa Bay over five years. The Rangers didn’t want to go that long or that high.

Read more »

BSB FanDuel: 12/3

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

For those unfamiliar, 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.

Secondary scoring, not Lundqvist the biggest concern for the Rangers

Zuccarello is one of several Rangers players that need to step up offensively

Zuccarello is one of several Rangers players that need to step up offensively

Henrik Lundqvist isn’t turning in consistent Vezina worthy performances this season, something that’s being well documented, however it’s reasonable to expect Lundqvist to rebound. When someone delivers the type of consistent excellence Lundqvist has done for the best part of a decade it’s fair to expect a return to form. A bigger concern for the Rangers right now is the lack of consistent, secondary scoring the team is receiving.

The Rangers are hovering around the playoff positions almost exclusively because of the contributions of Rick Nash, Marty St Louis and Derick Brassard. The trio have 34 of the Rangers 71 goals, accounting for over 47% of the Rangers total. After those three, production falls of a cliff. The return of Derek Stepan has given the Rangers an added dimension but the team is getting far too little out of players who they were counting on for big contributions and the Rangers season threatens to get worse if that lack of production continues.

Read more »

Rangers may have saved Stralman’s life

Per Dan Rosen, the New York Rangers have saved Anton Stralman’s life. Stralman had been battling lung infections during his time with Columbus, and it caused the Devils to pass on him after signing him to a PTO in 2011. Since the Rangers have access to some of the best doctors, they were able to get him to a pulmonologist, who was able to treat Stralman for his ailments. This led to his successful sting in New York and his pay-day in Tampa Bay.

It’s a great article that you should read, and it’s a feel-good story about a very good and very underrated defenseman.

The far-reaching impact of Derek Stepan’s return

Derek Stepan is already fourth on the team in scoring

It was just over four weeks ago that Chris Mueller was the third-line center for the New York Rangers. Feels like a lot longer than that, right?

New York’s problems down the middle began when the team failed to bring in a replacement for Brad Richards and were exacerbated when Derek Stepan broke his fibula during training camp.

But since Stepan’s return to the lineup on November 8th, a bit of normalcy has returned to the Blueshirts. Their 5-5-2 record over that span looks a lot worse thanks to three recent losses to the impressive Tampa Bay Lightning, but Stepan has been a godsend since the moment he rejoined the team.

Read more »

BSB FanDuel: 12/2

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

For those unfamiliar, 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.

Halverson, Shesterkin, Buchnevich invited to respective WJC camps

Brandon Halverson (USA), Igor Shesterkin (RUS) and Pavel Buchnevich (RUS) were all invited to their respective 2015 World Junior Championships camps. Halverson, the Rangers 2nd round pick in 2014, will likely compete for a backup goalie role. Shesterkin (4th, 2014) will also (likely) be competing for the same spot for Russia. Buchnevich (3rd, 2013) is all but a lock to make the team.

The need to beat up on bad teams in December

Going to the dirty areas, scoring more goals. (Photo: Adam Hunger/USA Today)

Photo: Adam Hunger/USA Today

With their 6-3 loss last night, the New York Rangers dropped to 0-3 against the Lightning, and the mood switched from positive –following a home-and-home sweep of the Flyers– to negative pretty quickly. It’s amazing how that works. But the best teams in the league do two things consistently: Beat up on bad teams and stay around .500 against good teams.

So far, the Rangers have played 13 games against teams likely headed to the playoffs and 11 games against likely non-playoff teams. Keyword here is likely, based on current record, division, and #fancystats known to predict rise/fall of playoff contenders and pretenders (FF close, PDO). Part of the equation here is when the Rangers played certain teams as well, which –as full disclosure– I did not factor into this post. Nor did I factor in home/away splits, since the Rangers seem to play better on the road anyway.

Read more »

Shaky defense gifts third straight loss to Tampa Bay

AP Photo/Jason DeCrow

AP Photo/Jason DeCrow

The New York Rangers played some pretty shaky defense against a very talented Tampa Bay Lightning team, and it cost them dearly. Three straight gaffes cost them three straight goals, and an empty netter sealed the deal as the Lightning swept the season series with the 6-3 win. For some inexplicable reason, people were blaming Henrik Lundqvist for the loss, but as we get into the goal breakdown, you’ll see why that’s pretty silly.

The Rangers did what I asked them to do, which was shut down Ryan Callahan. Too bad they let Tyler Johnson (2-1-3), Brett Connolly (2-0-2), and Victor Hedman (0-3-3) run over them all night long. That Tampa Bay team is deep, talented, and solid in all three zones. They are scary good. That said, this was a game the Rangers could have won, had they played defense.

On to the goals:

Read more »

Game 24: Stop treating Cally like royalty, show you can beat Tampa Bay

Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images

Photo by Mike Carlson/Getty Images

It seems like the New York Rangers have only played two teams over the past two weeks: the Flyers and the Tampa Bay Lightning. Tonight those Lightning are in town, and are 2-0 against the good guys. The second effort was much better than the tire fire that was the first game, and this will be the first time the Rangers have Ryan McDonagh back in the lineup (of course, Victor Hedman is back for the Lightning as well).

It would be nice if the Rangers started putting bodies on their old comrades, especially Ryan Callahan. I’m a Cally fan and all, but enough is enough. He’s been treated like royalty. Put a shoulder to his chest and knock him on his butt a few times please.

Jon Cooper has the Lightning playing a pretty similar system as the Rangers. They run an overload 1-2-2 forecheck, but will mix in a 2-1-2 as well. In the defensive zone, they mix zone and overload coverage depending on puck location. On special teams, they run a 1-3-1 power play and rotate between a diamond and box penalty kill depending on opposition setup.

Rangers lineup:

Read more »