Archive for Mats Zuccarello

May
30

The need to keep some players around

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pavel buchnevich chris kreider

Photo Credit: Jim McIsaac/AP

The Rangers are in the middle of a rebuild. We don’t know exactly what that means yet, other than jettisoning some expiring contracts and avoiding a likely terrible contract for Ryan McDonagh (yes, I said it). What we do know, or at least we are hoping/assuming, is that the Rangers are going to give their newly acquired youth time to play and grow.

There are a lot of people out there who want the Rangers to completely tear it down and trade everyone. From Mats Zuccarello to Chris Kreider to Marc Staal to Kevin Shattenkirk. Trade every possible piece on the roster that can fetch something younger and run with it. Fill in the roster with deadbeat free agents, and tank for the top pick next year. I am not a fan of that strategy.

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Categories : Offseason
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He’s like a tiny lion

When the Rangers made the organizational decision to re-build a flawed roster, there was immediate debate about the future of Mats Zuccarello.  At the time, he had 1.5 years left on his (very affordable) contract and had turned 30 in training camp.  I don’t think there was anyone out there claiming that Zucc was running out of gas, but it was fair to say there was some uncertainty about where he fit best in the future plans of the organization.

Fast forward to the present; the Rangers had traded almost all their pending UFA’s and pulled the trigger on trading their captain and number one defenseman, Ryan McDonagh to the Lightning in exchange for futures.  The Rangers were all in on the re-build.  Mats Zuccarello remains on the roster.  Read More→

mats zuccarello

Photo: Jim McIsaac/Newsday

This one hurts to write, because I love Zucc. But the reality of the situation is that Mats Zuccarello may wind up being traded at the draft this year. He’s a first line player making second line money. He’s good for 50-60 points per year –possibly more on a team with an actual system in place– at just $4.5 million for one more year.

Zuccarello is a great add for any team looking to add scoring. His cap hit makes him even more attractive. But for everything Zuccarello brings, he is 30 and only has one year left on his deal, limiting his return. Even so, if he does get traded, he should –at least in theory– bring in a solid return.

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Categories : Players
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(JUSTIN TASCH/NEW YORK DAILY NEWS)

In case you missed it, yesterday saw some significant happenings in Rangerland.  First, the Rangers placed Brendan Smith on waivers and called up Neal Pionk.  Soon after, Jeff Gorton and Glen Sather showed up at practice and issued a joint statement about the future of the franchise.  There was a tepid (re: non-existent) endorsement about AV’s future and much Twitter ink spilled about what it all means.  As you can imagine, I have some thoughts…

1. If you read the memo that the Rangers organization released, a couple of things jump out. First, it seems the organization is trying to gauge fan reaction to the notion of a rebuild.  There is enough qualifying language and vague platitudes in the memo to reverse course if the reaction to the release was pure outrage at abandoning a season where they aren’t completely out of it.  Read More→

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Paul J. Bereswill

At the end of tonight’s game in Arizona, the Rangers will reach the midway point of their 2017-18 regular season.  That means it’s time for some midseason report cards!  To kick things off, we’ll be focusing on the top six forwards.

Complicating matters slightly is the fact that the Rangers don’t have a strict delineation between their top six and bottom six.  There’s definitely a fourth line.  There’s Kevin Hayes handling tough match-ups on a nightly basis, but his wingers have rotated regularly.  So for the purposes of this exercise, let’s call the following players “the top six”: Mika Zibanejad, Chris Kreider, Pavel Buchnevich, Mats Zuccarello, Rick Nash, JT Miller and David Desharnais.  Yes, that’s actually seven forwards.  Just roll with it.

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Apr
04

What a year for Mats Zuccarello

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mats zuccarello

Mats Zuccarello has been something special for the Rangers. When he first came on board, he was an unknown that was having a lot of trouble adjusting to the North American game. It wasn’t until he made the necessary adjustments (discussed in detail by Suit) that he was able to become a productive and consistent NHL player.

Fast forward to today, and Zucc is about to put together his second straight 60 point season, third if you want to round up from 59 during the 2013 season. But it’s not just the points that are impressive. Well, they are, as are those amazing passes he makes look routine and simple. But it’s the fact that he makes others around him better.

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Categories : Players
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Mar
31

On chemistry

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New York Post

Since the analytics movement began a few years ago, there has been a pretty consistent back and forth amongst the old and new school about the proper way to go about assembling a hockey team. The old adage is that you can’t build a team on a spreadsheet. More goes into it than that. On the other side of the coin, you take what you can quantify and use the most important data as the backbone for the team’s construction. At the end of the day, it all kind of boils down to “how do you quantify chemistry, character and heart?” It is even possible? Read More→

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mats zuccarello

Mats Zuccarello is showing that hockey is for everyone. He has been named the You Can Play Ambassador for the Rangers. The You Can Play project is a nonprofit organization committed to supporting the LGBTQ community and fighting homophobia in sports.

Per the Hockey is for Everyone calendar, the Rangers will participate in festivities on February 5th when they host the Calgary Flames, and on February 7th when they host the Anaheim Ducks. I’d like to see them on the calendar more, considering the city in which they play.

The NHL is doing a wonderful thing for equal rights and fighting hate. Kudos to Zucc for taking on a role in the effort.

Categories : Players
Comments (3)
rangers hurricanes

Nash has been good, almost great. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

Where do you start with the Rangers top six? If you’re grading the offense as a whole, it’s fair to say you would give the team a strong grade – probably A level.

The Rangers boast an elite (at least statistically) powerplay, they sit second in the league in goals per game (3.4/game) and have scored more goals than every team in the league (144 at time of writing). However, when you break it down, has every player played to his own individual ability?

Rick Nash

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Categories : Players
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It might be much easier to find a trade partner for Mats Zuccarello than Rick Nash this late in the summer

It might be much easier to find a trade partner for Mats Zuccarello than Rick Nash this late in the summer

Now that the Blueshirts have pulled off another late-summer coup and added coveted prospect Jimmy Vesey to their lineup for the coming season, the club is loaded with forwards and many are wondering if the next domino to fall is a deal for help on defense.

But though the Rangers are well equipped to trade from their excess depth, finding a trade partner will be no easy task. This late in the summer teams have basically assembled the rosters they intend to bring to training camp. Adding free agent scraps is one thing, but making a blockbuster move at this point is extremely rare.

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