Musings: Is there a captain that means more to his team than Ryan Callahan?

It’s been a while since I’ve written the musings here. This is generally Chris’ post, but he’s currently “indisposed.” So I’ve taken them over. Feel free to use your own interpretation of “indisposed” and make fun of Chris in the comments.

The Captain

How about that Ryan Callahan eh? He does everything for the Rangers. It is clear why he is the heart and soul of the team, and why he was named captain at the beginning of this season. There are very few captains in the NHL that mean as much to their team than Cally does to the Rangers. In fact, I can only think of a few: Jonathan Toews, Jarome Iginla, Dustin Brown, and Shane Doan.

Hot Richards

Brad Richards sure has been something of late. With last night’s goal, the alternate captain has 15 points in the month of March (6-9-15), a span of 12 games. He has the most points in the month of March than any other player, and is getting back on track to clear 60 points. When the Rangers signed Richards, expectations were that he would clear 60 points most seasons, and have a few seasons clearing 70 points. Considering the effect he’s had on Michael Del Zotto’s turn around, I’ll take 60 points and leadership/bettering others over 70 points any day.

Rough stretch for Del Zotto

Speaking of Del Zotto, he hasn’t looked the same since that hip injury. Maybe he’s just favoring it a bit, or maybe he’s just hitting a slump. But that lateral pass on the powerplay last night was last year’s version of Del Zotto, not this year’s version. The kid still has a lot of learning and growing to do, but mark my words, every mistake he makes he will learn from. Patience.


The Rangers definitely miss Mike Sauer, but not as much as you might think. Tim Erixon and Stu Bickel have filled in very well for the injured defenseman, and while both have a lot to learn still, they are making the loss of Sauer easier to manage. Bickel and Sauer play extremely similar games, so it’s like he was never injured in the first place…except for that stint where Steve Eminger and Anton Stralman comprised the bottom pairing.

Stralman gets a bad rap

One quick note about Stralman: Boy he gets a bad rap here. The guy came in as an UFA signed in the beginning of the season, and had to work his tail off to even get into the lineup. When injuries started to mount, he played top four minutes and helped Del Zotto along in his development. Once players like Bickel started to emerge, and Stralman started to slump, he started getting blame for a lot of things. He filled in well, and was a great signing to help deal with injuries.

So long Fedotenko

Ruslan Fedotenko may be one of the more under appreciated signings Glen Sather has made in the past few years. Last year Feds was magnificent while playing on a line with Brian Boyle and Brandon Prust, forming one of the most formidable shut down checking lines in hockey. This year, the magic just wasn’t there. It wasn’t so much that he appeared to lose a step, it was that others played better, thus passed him on the depth chart. The emergence of Mats Zuccarello was the final nail in the coffin for Feds.

Quick questions:

  • Has Bickel’s emergence made Sauer expendable in the right deal?
  • Would you trade Sauer and Brandon Dubinsky for Bobby Ryan at the draft?
  • Which team scares you more in the playoffs: the Penguins, Flyers, Bruins, or Caps?
  • Over/under 60 points for Cally this year?
  • Over/under 30 goals for Richards?
  • Over/under 40 points for Del Zotto?

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  • 1. Good question, links well to the Bobby Ryan question too. Would I trade Sauer and Dubi for Ryan. Yeah, think I would. Dubi’s play has just been horrible this year. Can’t work out why – but of Hags, Gabby and Richards is our 1st line moving forward then we need someone with Cally to share the workload and goals with. I’d like to see Ryan as a Ranger next year.

    I feel Bad for Dubi as he’s clearly a popular guy both on and off the ice with Fans and players alike – but we want to win the cup and sentiment can’t always come into these things.


  • 1. If Erixon proves he belongs then the combo of he and Bickel may make Sauer expendable.

    2. I would def trade Sauer and Brandon Dubinsky for Bobby Ryan, but the Ducks likely won’t do that deal without Kreider in it.

    3. I’m not afraid of any Eastern Conf teams, maybe Pitt, but by the time we play them they could be banged up.

    4. Under 60 for Cally, under 30 for Richie, over 40 for MDZ

  • 1) Sauer was already expendable in the “right” deal. Almost every player is, for the “right” deal. We’re not talking about Callahan, or Lundqvist here. We’re talking Sauer. And, while I love me some Sauer, you can definitely replace him in the “right” deal.

    2) Yes, but Anaheim would not.

    3) The least preferable team to face: Pens.

    4) Callahan: under 60 pts, but he gets 30 goals this year.

    5) Richards: He’s hot, it’s possible, but I say still under 30 goals by season’s end.

    6) MDZ: Over 40 points.

    Addendum: Gaborik get 40!

  • What’s the market for players who’ve missed the last 50 games with concussion issues?
    There isn’t one. Best hope is that Sauer is ready to go next training camp, he isn’t going to be part of any deal.
    Bickel’s been okay, but I seriously doubt he’s part of the long range future.

  • Because we’ve not heard much about Sauer since his injury, I believe he is damaged goods, and would be tough to trade. That stated, I would make the move for Ryan, but the Ducks would laugh us out the door!

    With Kreider coming up next year, we will have help for Cally. Either he, or Hags will skate with Cally’s line, and Dubi drops down to the Boyle, Prust line.

    The Pens scare the crap out of me, unless we start to hit that cry baby Cindy, and that freak faced Malkin, and Latang! Again, I asked this question last week, and no one answered, why has no one hit that little bitch Cindy?

    Cally exceeds 60pts, with Richards hitting 29 goals, MDZ exceeds 40 pts, and Gabby will get 40-42 goals.

    In closing, Cally will go down as one of the best Captain’s in this storied franchise history. I just love his heart, and brass balls, with his shot blocking!

  • First of all, thank you to all for not listening to Dave and making fun of me being ‘indisposed’. Mucho appreciado.

    Cally will get 30 goals, not 60 pts.
    Richie will get 30 goals, IF the PP continues to get better…
    No way do Anaheim settle for Dubi and Sauer. Maybe if a guy like Chris Thomas was thrown in….

    Well said on Stralman Dave. He’s had some downs recently but in general he’s been a successful signing. Filled in well.

  • I would Dubinsky plus any combo of Bickel/Sauer plus a current prospect other than Kreider for Ryan

  • i would trade dubi but i would not deal sauer just yet the pens are the one team the rangers should be worried about the rangers and torts fears no team because the rangers have beaten all the top dogs in hockey including the pens. cally should be good for 30 goals gabby a good 40 42 and lets not forget henrik winning the vezina. and finally would torts get some jack adams votes he really turned this franchise when he came in and pushed all the right buttons and made this team believe in his system and him as a coach but i think hitchcock will win it he has done some job with the blues .

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