Lundqvist, Girardi and McDonagh the key to Rangers hopes

It’s a pretty obvious statement to make but the Rangers’ top defensive pair of Ryan McDonagh and Dan Girardi are critical to the Rangers hopes of progressing to the Conference finals and beyond. Dan Girardi and, particularly Ryan McDonagh, have been inconsistent in this series but a dominant performance from both – in addition to the assumed performance from Henrik…

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Thoughts heading into Game 4

It’s funny how the playoffs work. During the regular season, sample sizes grow and long-term narratives take hold. Discussions emerge, debates rage and quantitative analyses are produced. The playoffs are a whole different animal. Most factors surrounding playoff teams are fleeting. Only as relevant as the last game. This makes life exceptionally difficult on hockey writers. Especially when your piece…

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The Musings: A rivalry renewed

Today is the day a rivalry gets renewed. The Rangers entertain the Flyers tonight in a much anticipated series. Let’s throw a few musings up. The series against the Flyers represents a no-win situation for the Rangers. In all honesty, there is not a huge amount separating the two teams but yet everyone expects the Rangers to win. The Flyers…

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Injury/Lineup updates: McDonagh 100%; Vets getting rest

Per Andrew Gross, injured defenseman Ryan McDonagh has confirmed that he is 100%, and will return for the playoffs. McDonagh has been out since April 1, after taking a “questionable” hit from Vancouver’s Alex Burrows late in the third period. Although he is 100%, he will not be playing tonight in Montreal. In addition to McDonagh, Dan Girardi, Martin St….

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Injury notes: Kreider, McDonagh skating

Per Andrew Gross, both Ryan McDonagh and Chris Kreider were skating today at the Rangers optional skate. Neither did intensive work, with McDonagh doing some light skating and Kreider gripping his stick with one hand, but it’s a good sign to see them skating. Alain Vigneault did not give a timetable for either’s return, but did mention he is unsure…

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McDonagh out and day to day, Moore in tonight

Per Andrew Gross, defenseman Ryan McDonagh is out tonight and is day-to-day after being on the receiving end of a questionable hit –that received no supplemental discipline– from Alex Burrows. John Moore, who has been out since March 21, will take McDonagh’s spot in the lineup.

Musings: The Rangers have contract headaches looming

Yes, I know Dave gave you a Musings this morning. Whatever. You’re being spoiled today with two. As the Rangers close in on a playoff spot, form, health and special teams become so incredibly important at this time of the year. With the Avalanche on tap this evening, let’s have a muse for the second time today. It’s nice to…

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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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The Musings: Are the Rangers peaking at the right time?

The Rangers are riding a strong run of form, have a goalie close to his peak and beat the Flyers with relative ease Wednesday night. With so many positives let’s muse. They wouldn’t be the Philadelphia Flyers if they wouldn’t look to start something at the end of a game in which they’re losing, would they? Completely classless franchise. I…

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Ryan McDonagh’s case for the Norris

If there is one award that is up in the air this year, it is the Norris Trophy for best defenseman. Only once in the post-Lidstrom era has a purely offensive defenseman (Erik Karlsson) won the award, but the award does generally lean towards those with pretty offensive numbers (although that’s clearly not the only criteria, or else Mike Green…

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