Why the Rangers need to address the center position this summer

Not a single team currently ranked lower than the Rangers in face-off percentage this year will be in the playoffs. The last four Stanley Cup Champions (Chicago (twice), LA and Boston) rank 5th, 3rd and 8th respectively in face-off success. All three of the Rangers centers relied on for their offense – Derick Brassard, Derek Stepan and Brad Richards (so,…

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Rangers prospect focus shows no sign of changing

When you look at the current Rangers roster, there are plenty of examples how the Rangers have successfully looked to the American hockey program and how the franchise has a preference for American trained players. Whether it be the drafting of Derek Stepan, Chris Kreider, J.T. Miller or Carl Hagelin, the free agent signing of Cam Talbot or the now…

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Derek Stepan’s improved form crucial to Rangers’ hopes

Too many times this season, Derek Stepan – no longer a kid on the Rangers roster – has been a passenger. Despite having 48 points (on course for 55), most people consider his season an underwhelming one, which speaks to Derek’s talent and just how much fans expect of him. Stepan needs to be involved and needs to generate offense for his…

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The Rangers cannot afford to trade Derek Stepan

It’s the time in hockey season where rumours are rampant. Ryan Callahan is apparently already half way out the door, the Rangers are apparently in bed with Martin St Louis and apparently Glen Sather will ‘check in’ on Ryan Kesler. All of these rumours have legs to some degree, so when you hear Derek Stepan’s name mooted as a piece…

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Stats to chew on: Olympic break edition

– Only five players have more game-winning goals than Rick Nash (6). – Only Alex Ovechkin is averaging more shots per game than Rick Nash (4.1). – Only nine players have more points against their own division than Mats Zuccarello’s 21. – Only eight players have more penalty minutes on home ice than Chris Kreider (53).  Only Dallas’s Antoine Roussel…

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Rangers midseason grades: The top-six forwards

The Rangers have struggled to score consistently all season. Successful teams get the bulk of their scoring from their top six forwards, but no Ranger forward has covered himself in glory this season. Before going on to look at the individual grades at the halfway mark consider this: Mats Zuccarello is leading this team in scoring – a team designed…

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Rangers’ resurgence won’t last long if top forwards don’t start producing

The Rangers were able to salvage their franchise-record homestand with wins over Minnesota and Toronto, but things still need to change if the Blueshirts are going to turn their season around. New York’s 27th-ranked offense has been carried by the likes of Mats Zuccarello, Chris Kreider and Benoit Pouliot over the last two weeks, while the team’s top players continue…

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Patience is a vitrue

Last night, the Rangers lost their 2013-2014 opener in Phoenix.  It was neither pretty nor particularly encouraging.  Sure, there were some bright spots; Brad Richards showed signs of life, Marc Staal looked great and the defense as a whole looked much more active in the offensive zone. Since the pre-season started, the staff here at BSB has been preaching patience….

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Musings: The Rangers open up in the desert

Today it all begins. The Rangers open their season today as the season, tone setting, nine game road trip gets under way tonight in Phoenix. Let’s jump straight into the first Musings of the new season. It will be interesting to see how Derek Stepan starts tonight. Will he be a step behind? Will the lack of reps, preseason games,…

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Friedman: Rangers, Stepan agree to 2-year deal

According to Elliotte Friedman, Derek Stepan and the New York Rangers have agreed to terms on a 2-year deal.  The value is estimated in the $6.5 million range, but is yet unconfirmed.  Looks like Sather got his bridge deal, after all.  Welcome back Step, now get to work.