filip chytil

Chytil: Please. Don’t. Rush.

Following the weekend just gone, there will no doubt be plenty of calls to bring Filip Chytil back to New York at the earliest opportunity. Healthy again, the need at center still obvious (moving JT Miller again is not the answer) and fresh off a two goal outburst on the weekend, Chytil’s play is demanding attention.

Chytil is off to a tremendous start in the AHL with 11 points in 9 games but he is exactly where he should be. He’s the focal point of the Wolfpack’s offense, playing important minutes and is now starting to get comfortable with the system and the pro game in North America. The Rangers should be able to make the playoffs without him and should allow him to grow in Hartford at least for the short term. With the team’s logjam on the blueline at all levels of the organisation the team should also be able to upgrade the center position without losing anything significant in return.

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Categories : Prospects
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Nov
20

Is it time for Vinny Lettieri to get a shot?

November 20, 2017, by · Comments (63)

vinny lettieri

With each passing game, the desperate need for a 3C intensifies. Last night, with David Desharnais struggling, the Rangers shuffled the lineup, putting Paul Carey into the mix. This is the same Paul Carey that Alain Vigneault passed over in favor of 11F/7D earlier in the season.

As it sits right now, Desharnais is the 3C (sometimes masquerading as a 2C) and Carey is the 13F. When one struggles, the other is in the lineup. That’s not the most ideal scenario. Replacing Derek Stepan with literally nothing was not a smart move. While we wait for a potential trade, a move from within may be the best bet in the short term.

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Categories : Prospects
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AP Photo/Seth Wenig

The Rangers were looking to get back on track after losing two in a row, and did just that against Ottawa last night. The Rangers played strong defensive hockey (not perfect, but it’ll do) and made the most of their chances in the 3-0 win. They club really cemented the win after a brilliant PK after the Brendan Smith major/game misconduct.

The Rangers got a big two points against a team they may be fighting for a playoff spot down the road. It may not seem important in November, but it’s a four point swing against a potential playoff team. At this juncture, with how the Rangers have played, every point and every swing counts.

On to the goals:

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Categories : Game Wrap-ups
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Nov
19

Game 21: Right the ship, get revenge against Ottawa

November 19, 2017, by · Comments (23)
jesper fast

Photo Credit: Getty Images / Bruce Bennett

The Rangers are back home tonight after getting swept in their short two game road trip to take on the Ottawa Senators. They will be looking for some form of revenge against the Sens, who ousted the Rangers from the playoffs last year.

The Rangers are hanging around at .500, but that won’t be good enough (obviously) to move the needle among the fans. They need to start playing 60 minutes of hockey consistently. I can’t believe that is an actual problem for this team, but it is.

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Categories : Game Thread
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Nov
19

Chytil nets two in return, Pack win

November 19, 2017, by · Comments (2)

Hartford Wolf Pack 4, Utica Comets 1

Utica, NY, November 18, 2017 – A pair of rookies, Filip Chytil, with two goals, and Vinni Lettieri, with a goal and two assists, led the Hartford Wolf Pack to a 4-1 win over the Utica Comets Saturday night at the Adirondack Bank Center.

Another first-year pro, Gabriel Fontaine, also scored for the Wolf Pack, posting his first pro point, as Hartford snapped an 0-1-2-0 streak.

“I thought we were able to produce a lot of chances from our speed,” Wolf Pack head coach Keith McCambridge said. “I thought that game was probably one of our fastest, with regards to coming through the neutral zone, getting on the puck in the offensive zone, and our execution being cleaner on our breakouts. And the one thing that really jumps out is the third period, being able to do a real good job playing with the lead.”

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Categories : AHL
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Nov
19

The dreaded middle

November 19, 2017, by · Comments (16)

alain vigneault

The Rangers have cooled off somewhat from their hot streak, and we’re once again seeing the flaws inherent in the structure of this team and the execution of their game. Although the loss against Columbus was primarily due to Sergei Bobrovsky’s phenomenal night, the previous game against Chicago had a lot to do with their inability to play a full 60 minutes. Whether it’s due to the players in the lineup, the coach who sends them out onto the ice, or the GM who put together the lineup the Rangers are headed towards a serious predicament: the dreaded middle.

See, if there’s one thing you don’t want to be in today’s NHL, especially considering the top tier talent available in the early picks of next year’s draft, it’s just ok. If you’re good enough to make the playoffs but not good enough to contend, then you just miss out on a better draft pick. Similarly, if you’re bad enough to miss the playoffs but not all that bad compared to the rest of the early golf crowd, then the draft pick you end up getting won’t move the needle too terribly much. From a fan perspective too it’s kind of disappointing – at least if you’re watching your team lose a lot of games you know that somewhere down the line, and maybe as soon as the following year, you’ll be watching something good. Nobody wants to be the Carolina Hurricanes (sorry Canes fam, you’re still my second team anyways), good enough to make people say “next year should be fun” but bad enough that that next year actually isn’t.

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Categories : Uncategorized
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Nov
18

Pack lose in regulation for first time in five games

November 18, 2017, by · Comments Comments Off on Pack lose in regulation for first time in five games

Rochester Americans 4, Hartford Wolf Pack 2

Rochester, NY, November 17, 2017 – C.J. Smith had two goals and two assists Friday night at the Blue Cross Arena at the Rochester War Memorial, to lead the Rochester Americans to a 4-2 win over the Hartford Wolf Pack.

The loss was the first in regulation in five games for the Wolf Pack, who had been 2-0-2-0 in their previous four games. Ryan Sproul had his first Wolf Pack goal, and added an assist, and fellow defenseman John Gilmour also scored for Hartford. Brendan Guhle and Hudson Fasching had the other Rochester goals, and Colin Blackwell had two assists.

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Categories : AHL
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Nov
18

Rangers drop second in a row, get blanked by Columbus

November 18, 2017, by · Comments (44)

Image c/o Labatt Blue

The Rangers looked to right the ship last night in Columbus, just two days after suffering their first loss in two weeks. Sadly for the Blueshirts, they faced the same hot goalie that they did last week in Sergei Bobrovsky, except this time, they were unable to score.

This game featured Brendan Smith’s return to the lineup, marking his first start since the October 31 win against Vegas. The game also featured the return of the ever-infuriating Pavel Buchnevich Project, where inexplicably, some players get long leashes whilst others do not.

On to the bullet points… Read More→

Categories : Uncategorized
Comments (44)
Nov
17

Game 20: Brendan Smith returns, hopefully plays better

November 17, 2017, by · Comments (46)

rangers blue jackets ryan mcdonagh brandon dubinsky

The Rangers are in Columbus tonight to take on the very potent Blue Jackets, who are a threat to win the Metro this year. The Blueshirts just had their six game win streak snapped, so Alain Vigneault deemed it the right time to get the optimal lineup dressed. So Brendan Smith will return tonight, and Steven Kampfer will sit.

The story will be on how the Rangers rebound after an atrocious third period against Chicago. The slot area was basically free for the Hawks as they tacked on three goals in five minutes, all from that area. For the Rangers to win, they will need to be better at team defense. It’s not on any particular player anymore, it’s on the team and on the coach to figure stuff out.

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Categories : Game Thread
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Nov
17

Defensive struggles overshadow Rangers offensive abilities

November 17, 2017, by · Comments (8)
pavel buchnevich chris kreider

Photo Credit: Jim McIsaac/AP

The Rangers are a weird team. From the players to the coaches to the GM, they are both great and terrible at the same time. The good news it that we can begin to quantify things this year, as 20 games is usually when we can begin seeing what the Rangers truly are, where they will improve, and where they might be over achieving.

Total Rank
GF 35 13
GA 42 28
SH% 7.76% 16
SV% 90.81% 27

*-All stats are at even strength.

Let’s get the easy stuff out of the way. Based on just raw goal totals, the Rangers a horrendous defensively and league average offensively, at least at even strength. However just looking at goals for and against doesn’t tell the whole story.

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Categories : Analysis
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