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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Best case/worst case scenarios for Ranger defensemen and goalies in 2013

Defensemen Aaron Johnson Best case: Johnson is an adequate depth defender and is significantly better than Stu Bickel in spot duty. Worst case: Johnson is no better than Bickel and the Rangers are back where they were last year if top-six blueliners get hurt. Anton Stralman Best case: Stralman continues to be an unsung hero for the Blueshirts and finally…

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Is Ballard worth the risk?

With the NHL draft behind us, the attention turns to the free agency period beginning on July 5th. In the mean time, teams begin to offload salary and make roster changes in anticipation of auction season. One of the moves that has already been made has seen Vancouver place Keith Ballard on waivers (regular waives, not buyout waivers). While the…

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Rangers final grades: Defense

Defense was a hallmark of the 2011-2012 New York Rangers.  It was arguably the key ingredient in their run to the Eastern Conference Finals.  They had an unwavering commitment to shot-blocking and solid play in their own end.  Even without a ton of roster turnover, the unit was not as proficient as they were last season, but still had a…

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Del Zotto becomes third Ranger to have offseason surgery

According to his Twitter account, Michael Del Zotto became the third Ranger to have surgery this offseason. It does not sound like his injury was as serious as the torn labrums suffered by Ryan Callahan and Carl Hagelin though. Since the type of surgery is unknown, and the team has not formally announced anything, a timetable for a return has…

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Michael Del Zotto is safe in New York, for now

Michael Del Zotto is a whipping boy for many, and his underwhelming season hasn’t helped him convince certain groups of fans –and media– of his long-term future being in New York. That said, Del Zotto is here to stay for the foreseeable future.  Depending on how the offseason plays out, the Rangers are not exactly blessed with a ton of…

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Finding a puck mover like Torey Krug is more important than finding a cannon point shot

As some of you may have noticed, the Rangers were awful on the power play again in 2013. One of the simple fixes suggested by many has been to bring in a guy with a cannon point shot.  That’d be a nice luxury to have, but the truth is that there are very few players in the league as effective…

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Musings; take down the Jets edition

If you think the Rangers media/fan base is bad, you should have seen the stink kicked up by Jake Gardiner’s agent in Toronto. One naughty tweet (“free Jake Gardiner”) created a storm of speculation. Rangers’ prospects should relax knowing they don’t need to deal with the overzealous Toronto market. Following on from his recent upturn in form, Michael Del Zotto…

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Del Zotto returning to form

It won’t be a popular topic with many Rangers fans, but Michael Del Zotto has quietly gone about playing some very good hockey since returning from his injury. This return to form is also coinciding with the Rangers recent strong run, which is no coincidence. Del Zotto’s form has been overshadowed by Ryan McDonagh’s own return to form, Marc Staal’s…

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Musings: The take the Island edition

The Rangers shoot for a season best fourth victory in a row tonight against the Islanders. Naturally, the Islanders love playing spoiler to their big brother neighbours so it should be a dandy. On to the musings. Where do you stand on the visor front? I’m all for mandatory visors and always have been. Hockey is a fast and dangerous…

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