Game Wrap-upsPlayoffs

Rangers season ends in embarrassment, disappointment

rangers penguins
Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

It was a disappointing end to the season to say the least, with the shock of Rangers’ blowout loss to Pittsburgh away matched only by their previous two efforts at home. The game was microcosmic of the season – flashes of pomising play at the beginning, with defensive breakdowns and endemic failure getting worse over time. This loss was the kind of game where you wished for a mercy rule, not only for our sake, but for Henrik Lundqvist’s, who despite being the best Ranger of the past decade is sure to receive some of the blame for the Rangers’ early playoff exit this year.

This playoff series against the Penguins was troubling but unsurprising for many fans who had seen underlying issues with the team papered over by stellar goaltending all season. It was the kind of series that makes you worry that the window is just about closed, and it makes this offseason that much more critical for Jeff Gorton.

 Penguins 0 Rangers 1

 The Rangers open the scoring with a deflected goal by Rick Nash. Brassard moves the puck up from the goal line to Skjei at the point, who then passes it over to Girardi along the blueline. Girardi takes a big shot, which Nash then redirects past Murray.

Penguins 1 Rangers 1

 Hagelin knots the game at one off a slick feed from Phil Kessel. Hagelin skates with the puck behind the net into the corner, then passes it to Phil at the opposite corner. Hagelin then goes to the net, receiving Kessel’s pass and tipping it into the net. A well-executed give-and-go ties the game at one goal apiece.

Penguins 1 Rangers 2

 Dominic Moore puts the Rangers back up just a moment later with a weird goal, to say the least. Fast passes it to Moore as the two of them and Stalberg are skating through the neutral zone into the Penguins end. Moore then flings it laterally back to Fast, who puts it on net. The puck then goes through Murray’s legs, hits the post, into Hornqvist, then Moore, then into the net.

Penguins 2 Rangers 2

 Not a lot to say on this one other than that it was Phil Kessel doing what he does best. Crosby makes a nice pass to Kessel as the latter is entering the zone on the power play. Kessel then rips a wrister, which hits the knob of Henrik’s stick and flies into the top left corner of the net.

Penguins 3 Rangers 2

 Bryan Rust puts the Penguins up on a play where the Penguins simply picked apart the Rangers defense. Matt Cullen moves the puck from down low up to Trevor Daley at the point, with Daley then faking the shot and passing it to Rust right in front of the net. Rust has a wide open net here and finishes with ease.

Penguins 4 Rangers 2

 Kuhnhackl flips the puck down ice towards the Rangers end with Bryan Rust and Derick Brassard after it. Rust ties up Brassard and loses the puck, but has Matt Cullen right behind him to pick it up. Cullen takes the shot and this game is 4-2.

Penguins 5 Rangers 2

 A simple, effective play from the Penguins puts them up further, Crosby breaks into the Rangers’ zone down the wing, pulls up, finds Sheary in the middle and passes it to him. Sheary takes a quick shot and now the Rangers are trailing by 3. Not a great look for the Rangers defense leaving Sheary so much space down the middle of the ice.

Penguins 6 Rangers 2

 Malkin and Rust play this two-on-one perfectly to put the Penguins up by 4. Malkin’s comes down the wing with Skjei between him and Rust, with Girardi attempting to backcheck but doing so ineffectively. Malkin gets Skjei to commit, passes it across to Rust, and this game just gets worse for the Rangers.

Penguins 6 Rangers 3

 The Rangers get back on the board in the third period, but it’s too little too late. The puck bounces around down low on the Rangers power play, collected eventually by Derick Brassard. Brass works it back to Diaz on the point, who then takes a quick shot tipped in front by Chris Kreider for the Rangers third goal of the afternoon.

Shot Attempts and Scoring Chances

chart (30)chart (31)

While these two charts indicate that the Rangers had their fair share of puck possession they should be taken with a grain of salt. First, the Rangers did notably come out swinging in the first period so that skews the numbers a little bit and put them ahead. Second, they really hit the gas in the third playing from behind, with the Penguins turtling being a prime example of scoring effects. Third, neither of these charts describes just how bad they played without the puck, which is why we always do goal breakdowns to fill out our analysis. The Rangers’ defense was unbelievably bad without the puck, and the scoreline shows it.

Shot Location

Screen Shot 2016-04-23 at 6.51.36 PM

Again, this chart should be taken with a grain of salt, because while the Rangers did get a decent amount of shots, and some of them were in that critical “home plate” area, this doesn’t quite get to how bad the Rangers played without the puck.

All in all it was a tough loss, but the way this team played this series it’s hard for me to say they deserved to win. The hardest part of it all was watching this team fall apart in front of Henrik Lundqvist, who deserves none of the blame he’ll inevitably heap on himself. With some critical contracts expiring this summer, and some tough ones to move still on the books, this Jeff Gorton certainly has his work cut out for him this offseason.

It should be interesting to see how things play out, and I’m cautiously optimistic that the right adjustments can be made to keep this team contending through the rest of Lundqvist’s career and hopefully win him the Cup he deserves. Lastly, I just wanted to say thank you to everyone for reading and commenting, given that this was my first season writing about the Rangers here at Blue Seat Blogs. It means a lot that you guys are so passionate about this hockey team, and I hope I can continue to give you guys better and better content. We’ll have some more stuff up of course, but this is the last goal breakdown of this season, so until next time.

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  • I’ve watched that Kessel goal about 30 times & I know I’m supposed to be blind, but for the life of me, when does that shot hit the knob of Hank’s stick?

    • The replays showed the puck clearly changing direction. Looked like the shaft of the stick more than the knob to me.

    • I actually thought it looked like it was going wide and that the knob of the stick deflected it in.

    • I would get rid of both Staal’s, Nash, Boyle. Skeiji and McGilrath look ready. Yandle should be resigned. and everyone else. I would even consider moving Lundquist. It was a good run. He was terrible in the playoffs and down the stretch. Ranta was good all year. That frees up 18 mil without including lundquist and 27 if you do. We could get some good talent for thats. Sign Yandle for 5 and it leaves either 13 or 22 left over for about three spots

  • I would target removing the following roster players: Kreider, Nash, Staal

    I would not resign the following players: Yandle, Staal, Stalberg, Moore

    I would sign McIlrath and Bodie and play them.

    I would build the team around guys with skill and heart like JT Miller

    I would target guys like Ladd, Brouwer, Okposo, Boedker, Perron, Eriksonn in FA

    Of course not all would occur but something like the below



    • Its the NHL. Not a rotisserie league. To expect that much turnover with the assets you’re willing to trade is unrealistic. They will not be dealing from any kind position of strength. More likely, most of the roster returns with people like Nash, Yandle and Hayes—along with Moore and Stalberg going elsewhere. The real problem is when it comes to the Staals. If you don’t resign Eric, what do you do with Mark? I would think you would have to deal him—but what about the NT clause? And if you do resign Eric, now you have both Staals—neither of which has shown that they deserve to be given a uniform. Again, its going to be a VERY interesting summer for Gorton.

    • I know jt miller is the new golden boy around here but i was very unimpressed by him other than game 1. Trading kreider is stupid unless you get a great package. I agree about trading nash and staal

  • The Hagelin goal was a replay of power play goal(s) during the series-Hank, is it too hard to guard the exact same spot over and over again?
    Reality is this season was over when Hank threw a hissy fit and the net. He’s been a favorite of mine but Rangers never should have signed him to a long term contract, age factor, and giving away his back-up…like all sports-hockey is about speed and youth and desire…time to get rid of overpaid dead weight and idiotic trades that bring in over the hill vets-Staal-at the expense of draft choices and minor league prospects.

  • Pat you said – The hardest part of it all was watching this team fall apart in front of Henrik Lundqvist, who deserves none of the blame he’ll inevitably heap on himself….

    I get that the team in front of him has been pretty abysmal. But NONE of the blame??? This is Hank’s quote after yesterday’s stinker.

    “I think the last two (games) I just didn’t have it in me to make the difference,” …“The way the game is played, especially the last two games, a lot of big opportunities right in front, you need strong goaltending. You need a goalie that’s gonna make a lot of big, extra saves. I was not able to come up with that.”

    Uh gee – if Hank feels that way perhaps Hank should not have been in the nets???

    For awhile Hank has looked a man who has lost confidence, if not in himself, but certainly in the team in front of him. The dude is all world – I get it. He is hung out to dry a LOT of nights – Yeah I get it. But if Hank is going out there with that attitude, then give me Raanta. And quickly!!!

    I don’t know if any of you notice and I have not seen it much in this series, but over the regular season when Hank gives up a goal he typically gives a subtle (sometimes not so subtle) stare to whomever seems to be near him as if the goal was NOT ON Hank, but ON the defender.

    Find a video (the GIF loop above is too short) of the first Pittsburgh goal by Hags and watch his reaction and the look he gives Stepan.

    And hey a LOT of goals ARE on the defender. Stepan certainly had some culpability on that one. But on a team that lacks grit and heart & soul leadership, it is has got to hurt when your “all world” goalie teammate starts calling you out on the ice with his body language.

    This is just one dude’s opinion but I think that act is beginning to wear on his mates. Something is certainly amiss with the team and how they play in front of Hank vs. how they play in front in front of Raanta and Talbot the last two years.

    Bash me if you like – But I think Hank has to look in the mirror and start to question his own approach on the ice. He is the King – no doubt!! But every King needs a supporting cast of Dukes, Princes, Viceroys, etc.

    True – Hank’s minions have certainly let him down – but perhaps The Dukes, Princes, and Viceroys are no longer buying into his rule over the Kingdom.

    Before you call ME out – do your homework and find some regular season video of Hank giving up goals – I can’t tell you which game – maybe in a game he gets pulled – there sure were enough of them this year – but the King’s body language is pretty pervasive.

    • Sorry but without Hank’s stellar play this year the Rangers don’t even make the playoffs. Look at all of those goals yesterday & you see Grade AA chances & snipes to the top corners with great shots by Pens who had all the time in the world. You missed the telling quote after Hank classily blamed himself. He said, “The way we play, the chances we give up, it’s tough to win(not exact quote but close). He’s right–the way we play is man to man in the D-zone with everybody running around like chickens on LSD with one of our opponents cover free to score a gimme. People are blaming Yandle for chasing his man out to the blueline but the D are doing what the coach(es) want and it just created D-zone chaos. As Darwin demonstrated, the failure to adapt leads to the survival of the fittest.

        • Hank was stellar through the season; yanked as many times for being hung to dry than having poor games.

          His 5v5 Save % was exceptional.

          This team could no longer play the defensive scheme established the past few seasons and no adjustments were made to compensate for that.

          In the end, maybe it doesn’t make a big difference but, in my view, Hank is not nearly close to being the problem this season.

          • Lundquist is a great player, but worth his salary.

            Needs to go.

            Dames is true for Nash Giradi and Staal.

            I realize there is no trade contracts.

            But in pairing Lundquist:Girardi (plus maybe Staal) There will be a taker. Phoenix or Dallas.

      • You are spot on, sir.

        Collectively, for several reasons, we no longer had a cast that could play Vigneault’s system, hence, the same mistakes all season long (e.g., goals down low, players not covered well). It was incumbent upon the coach to change the defensive structure to a zone, rather than man-to-man, and no adjustment was made.

        • AD

          We have been yelling all season long how stubborn AV has been, and no adjustments. Well here is the results of a bone head coach’s decision process. Maybe we should clean house, ( the entire coaching staff ) let’s face it, the PK stinks, the PP stinks, the entire defense stinks up the place, who’s in charge??????? Just asking !!!!

      • Paul – Didn’t say anything negative about Hank’s play. As a matter of fact I mentioned several times he is all-world. And he is. I said several times his team hangs him out to dry. And they do – often.

        But this is a team that is largely devoid of a leader. My point is that I think Hank needs to step up HIS leadership approach and attitude on the ice by toning down his body language and the glare that is directed at his mates after a goal. Not all the goals – just most of them.

        Hank is a fierce competitor. That is what we all love about him. And I am sure that is the essence of his glare. But outside of golf, tennis, bowling 🙂 etc. major professional sports is a team game. His teammates are clearly at fault on many of his goals but should they be called out by his glare? Me thinks not.

        I think it was Cory Crawford who recently got beat in OT by teammate’s gaffe. Clearly the goal was on the defender and not on Crawford. Did not matter. Crawford got up skated off the ice until he caught up with the defender and patted him on the butt and gave him some words of encouragement. I have NEVER seen Hank do anything close to that.

        Down the stretch Raanta was pretty damned good – won 8 of his last 9 starts, I believe – while Hank was under .500 since March 1, I believe. The fact is the team plays better in front of Raanta and Talbot. Maybe it is because they think Hank will carry them and they need to put more effort in for the other guys. Or maybe it’s something else? I dunno but there is something to it.

        The 14-2-2 start (which was fueled my Hank being in some unknown superhuman zone) was probably the WORST thing that could have happened to this team. It put them into playoff position and it gave them the sense that they actually had a shot at something. And in reality, the makeup of this team would just not allow that to happen.

        And that is not on Hank. That is largely on Sather and now Gorton. They put this team together. It might be difficult for them to admit, but going all-in every year leaves the cupboard bare. Eric STALL for a decent prospect and two #2’s was a waste of three good assets.

        As Andy said the other day – we would be no worse with him – and I would add maybe we would have been better without him as it pretty much led to the benching of Lindbergh. Without that hot start we would have not made the playoffs and we might still have those 3 assets that Hurricanes now have.

        Boys (and Gals) There is much of work to be done. No #1’s – No #2’s – a few decent prospects coming – but not a deep system by any means. And we are in cap jail with the owners of several of the largest contracts woefully underperforming.

        And for a moment – think about what one asset that the Rangers have that would bring the most back in terms of a trade?

        All-world performer that Hank is – Does it make sense to have an $8M goalie or would it be better to turn him into a couple of #1’s and a sniper? I dunno – I am just asking?? And so should Gorton….

        • I hear you but I have never seen a more defeated & frustrated Hank like I saw this year. I think he was very angry about the play in front of him that he could not overcome, just like Mike Richter back in the day. My position is clear–the D was asked to play a system which did not suit them, the forwards did not backcheck as well as in the past, the handling of players was flawed & at times things were said that were inappropriate in casting an aspersion of blame & that happened with Hank too. As Flatbush said in his post “something was amiss” & I believe that and you can switch up as many players as you want but unless those issues are cleared up, nothing will change.

      • Not a big fan Paul, but exactly what I said when I watched him say that. It’s a coaching issue that Hank was talking about. once again I’m a big AV fan, but I must be wrong, the tape shows the truth.

    • I have been saying it over and over about Lundqvuist. He is good for a bad goal at least once every 3 games. Also his hockey sense and situation awareness is sub par. Yeah he makes acrobatic saves but he also has to know when to freeze a puck….for the money he makes…stick handle better and learn new tricks like cutting off angles by coming out of the net. He is by no means elite. Elite are Roy, Broduer, Dryden and such.
      Lundqvuist is the modern day Giacomon, and yes I loved Eddie as well.

      • There is no goalie in the league that doesn’t yield several bad goals a year, but the fact is that this year Hank stopped many shots that many other goalies would not even come close to stopping. The stats show that he has more Grade A scoring chances directed his way than any other goalie in the league. Enough said.

    • Don’t you know by now that when we lose it’s never Hanks fault! Kessels shot is one that he has to stop! If Kessel was on his off wing where he’d have more net to shoot at then i’d cut him some slack, Staal had him kept to the outside! He has to stop that one! Alot of guys made mistakes on Hagelins goal, but if Hank would ever learn how to use his stick then maybe he cuts off a pass that goes right across and thru his crease! Every game we lost in this series there was at least one goal that Hank should of had so don’t sit there and try to tell me that he was blameless! He didn’t get alot of support , but he was far from blameless himself!

    • I have seen that body language all too often. Whether looking like he’s pissed at a teammate or just defeated. Sometimes he just looks a little like a baby behind that mask.

      The problem is not Hank though. The problem is the myth outliving the reality. Except that in Hank’s own head and those of 98% of fans the hubris still resides. Long live the KING! It’s tough to live up to a title like that.

      So the team as we know it is finished now and the King’s job is to come to terms with the reality and be a good teammate, play a solid goal and enjoy the damn game which frankly, all too often it does not look like he is doing. New people are coming in and whatever comes out of the summer is going to have its own identity and needs its leaders to all be on the same page. And it needs coaching specific to its makeup.

      At the least I want to see Ranger hockey fun again. It was fun from the moment Torts took over talking about getting some “jam” into this team. It is imperative this team and its holdover leaders look in the mirror and get the direction right.

  • The Penguins were to fast for an overall slower team.
    Slower players: Staal, both Eric (wasted a good prospect and 1st rounder) and Mark, Boyle, Girardi, Klein, Nash, Stephen,Glass, Hayes, Lindberg.
    Speed kills, and today’s Hockey is based on quickness and speed (especially the playoff’s).
    When the Rangers were quick on the Powerplay with their passes, they were somewhat successful. To much hesitation, passing and ditsy doodling with the puck. (especially Nash and Hayes).
    This team also missed Haglins speed more then realized.
    We were totally out skated by Pittsburgh. Time to clean house next year!

    • Glass did not play and he is still top shelf speed let’s not blame him when he was not dressed

  • But it’s not just removing the dead weight. Vigneault needs to come to terms with the reality that veterans might not be the best thing for the team. He has to let the youth make mistakes and flourish without looking over their backs wondering when the ax is coming down. Vigneault’s subjective wheel of justice has helped breed an environment devoid of accountability and has taken away the team’s creativity. That’s another problem that reared its head in the playoffs and down the line of the regular season, but we can get to that over the summer.—Joe Fortunato

    You know what kills me. AV says the turning point of the series was in Game 3 when Staal got a penalty & Crosby scored 18 secs later. Really? Does that make any sense? Then he says he puts Diaz out there on the PP for his shot. Uh, did he ever see DMAC shoot the puck? Kid plays his heart out all season & then gets 9 mins in the POs. Can’t build team cohesion doing shit like that.

    • Like I said last night: You’re right No Dylan—we lose!! It didn’t take you too long to go back to your boy as the solution to all the ills of this team. The kid would have caught a cold with the amount of wind blowing by him from Kessel and Hagelin!!!! I don’t think their team cohesion relied upon a rookie dman who barely played during the season. Not only that, he is the solution to their putrid PP, too!!! Who knew??? Apparently only you. Again—-to be real here—the team needs a difference-maker. Every contender has one. We have none!!! A Stamkos would be a gift from the Gods. But they would have to ship out a boatload of contracts to gullible teams, just to get into the conversation. No, they will try and fix this, piecemeal. Add a piece here and there and hope for bounce-back years from the overpaid D, and the shell-shocked goalie. In other words, whistling past the graveyard—once again!!

          • Rob

            Just one question if I may, how many goals against when he was on the ice?????? Enough said !!!!

          • Walt,

            I’m not saying DMC shouldn’t have played over Boyle.
            What I’m getting at is D. Boyle is/ was NO WHERE as bad as you guys think!!!!! And to an extent, Tanner Glass were everyones punching bag around here all season long. In hindsight they were no where near as big of a hindrance to this teams overall success. There were far greater issues.

            Should they have played DMC more in the regular season? Yes.

            Should they have played DMC over D.Boyle from game one and on in the Playoffs?(considering he barely played in the reg season.)

            Didn’t you see his mistakes out there?

          • My only bone of contention is Boyle never truly made the transition to AV’s style, and system, and so stated himself. If that is the case, and he lost not a step, but several steps, and is manhandled by opposing players, why repeat the same crap game in, and game out. As for playing DMc, I could understand where your coming from, but AV said he was going to work the kid so that Girardi, and Boyle could be well rested for the PO’s. Well when it time to crap, or get off the pot, he got off the pot, and didn’t play the kid. The two old timers looked beat, tired, immobile, and slow as heck. Those are the main reasons for my beef with this guy !!!!!!!!!!!!

      • As usual you deflect from the issue & use obfuscation to make your point. You have to surmise that DMAC was out of his league without any evidence on your part that he was. He played 31 games, was he out of his league. I saw a play where Crosby made Skjei look silly. Does that mean he should have sat in the stands too. The players were very positive abt McIlrath, so how does it look when a guy who plays in the minors gets to play over him. More AV bullshit that destroys team cohesion. And that’s how they played–indifferently. I ‘d love to be a fly on the wall at exit interviews.

        • Paul—-he’s just not AV’s type of player. Its that simple. Obviously he can’t do what the coach wants him to do on the ice, at this stage in his career. That’s just the facts as AV sees them. And until he is canned, he makes those decisions. End of story. Skjei is a different story. From what you hear about him, he brings more to the table than a McD does. A guy who can move the puck up to the forwards quickly is what AV wants. Not just someone who is known ONLY for physical play. Hey, I’m with you, believe it or not, on the need for a McD type on the backline. I just don’t think at this stage, from the small sample that we saw, that he would have made much of a difference in this series. Lets be brutally honest here; the players’ opinions, at this point, mean squat. All the talk they do before games about how excited and focused they are always turn into nothing. Of course they’re loyal to McD. Hes one of them. I assume you’re referring to Yandle’s and Staal’s comments on how they feel more ‘comfortable’ with him as a partner out there. That’s kind of pathetic, isn’t it. Two vets need a rookie to make them feel “comfortable?” Isn’t it supposed to be the other way around? There is something wrong with this team internally. You say its the coach, I think its more than that. They talk a good game, and then wait for someone else to win it for them. That’s what needs to be addressed in the exit interviews—who has the balls to play here and who just likes to talk like they do. No obfuscation there!

          • Ya I get you but maybe the problem is trying to decide just what is AVs kind of player. He doesn’t think DMAC can play, fine, tell management to trade him so the kid can play somewhere else instead of ride the bench. By most accounts DMAC moved the puck up to the forwards quite well. If AV wants him to be Leetch & go end to end well that isn’t going to happen. DMAC did way more than just try to hammer people into submission. Saying he’s only good physically is just not fair. Players opinions do mean squat. Look what is happening in St. Loo with Hitchcock & Tarasenko. Brooks put an article on abt AVs firing in Vancouver. What bothers me is his friendly hail- fellow-well met exterior , while he passive aggressively undermines the confidence of players. Is Tanner Glass his kind of player? The guy gives 100% but he’s pretty much useless in any other way. Is Eric Staal his kind of player? He accomplished little, however, I expected that because it’s really damned hard to transition in mid stream. Esa Tikkanen sucked when the Rangers got him in midseason but he was great the following year. Is Lindberg or Hayes his kind of player? He jerked those guys all over the place this year, centre, wing without making up his mind. I’d be shocked if he was fired, although I wouldn’t shed a tear but he needs to stop coaching like he’s infallible and never wrong & learn to adjust. They were talking abt Quenville last night & how he’s so good at adjusting tactics within game(Friedman, Kypreos etc). Q says that he just goes with his gut, knowing what to do even if his head isn’t there yet. The Hawks are great not just because they have some great players, they have a great coach too. Believe it or not I’d love AV to win the Cup after two failed attempts, but I have no faith in his judgement. Hopefully, he’ll prove me wrong next year if he’s still coach.

          • If he is still here, then I’ll pull for him to win a cup, not for his sake, but for all the Ranger fans out there who want to win it all for a change!!!!!!

            I’m of the opinion that the man is bad news, smiles like a chimp, can’t adjust to anything on the fly, and is more stubborn than a mule. Obviously, I’m a big fan of his, NOT !!!!!!!!!

          • But the fact remains, he has been winning with his machinations since the day he got here. Hes put together 3 enviable seasons in arguably one of the Leagues toughest places to succeed. Yes they haven’t won the Cup—-and believe me when I say this—to me, that’s all that matters. But unless there is something really wrong going on in that locker room, and it can be traced directly to the head coach—why would mgmt ever replace him? Hes been a winner for them. And just who would you replace him with anyway? I’d rather they get themselves a real difference maker up front and a real stud defenseman on the blueline, and hand them over to this coach and see what he can do with them. I’m not talking about guys with potential to be good—guys that have been there and know when a coach is just blowing smoke up their asses. If he fails then, well then it would be easy to point your finger at him. Until then, he gets points for having the type of success that he has with basically 2nd and third liners; some masquerading as 1st liners; and some not even coming close to justifying the contracts they get. But unless they’re willing to shed those big contracts; and find some suckers willing to take them—those type of players will not be coming to NY. If that’s gonna’ be the case, then having a coach who can get 100+ pt seasons out of what talent he has—-and has them in contention every year hes been here—well, that might not be the worst situation in the world to have. Ask Tor, or Edm if they would sign up for that.

          • Joe

            When my son Rick was about two years old, he went near the stove, we yelled don’t touch, it’s hot. The boy touched, burnt his little fingers, and there after he never touch anything when we said the word hot.

            My son learned a lesson, but this thick skulled dip stick went back time, and again, repeating the same old, same old, and expected different results, idiotic……Dan Girardi was exposed for being a diesel in the cup finals, yet did AV make any changes to change things some how to protect Dan’s weakness, not no, but hell no. My frustration lies with the rigidness of this man, never wanting to change, and never wanting to give others a shot to maybe improve the team. I’ll take a Pee Wee coach over Clarabelle any day!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          • All I can say is that AV was a winner in canuckistan too, until he became a loser. His last two years there his teams did well in the regular season & then went out four straight. I don’t care what he did yesterday. He inherited a pretty damn good team & now he’s taking it to the bottom.

    • Paul

      Your post should be read by management, this HOF joke we have for a coach is bad news, and god knows he should be shown the door.

      Yesterday, Sullivan’s post game press conference, he stated that the kids he brought in from the Wilkes-Barre team were fast, hustled, and wanted to make names for themselves, and that he had all the confidence in the world with them in the line up……… When was the last time you heard anything along these lines from shit head, never?????

      The stench from that locker room started from the head down, who is the head????????? AV, wow, but he has a pretty smile, and I’m anti French like some clown once posted about me!!!!!!!!!!!!

      • True enough Walt – one problem we have though – there are no youngsters down on the farm that are fast, hustle, and want to make a name for themselves. The cupboard is bare my friend.

        Our best one now is roaming the deserts of Arizona…

        • That has been our history for the longest time my friend, this team always wants instant gratification, now they will be the bottom of the barrel for a few years, because the don’t build from the draft……

  • If the Rangers flip Rick Nash and get a 3rd line center and a top 6 winger, it will make their team a lot deeper.

    • We don’t need more centers or wingers. We need them to be deployed better (and when Buch comes over, he needs to be given time to acclimate in the top 6). We need D-men desperately. If Nash goes, it better be for D.

  • I think this offseason can go a number of ways. They can clean house and start missing the playoffs or barely getting in if they have a little luck. They can build around their young players like Kreider, Miller, Hayes??, Skjei, Lindberg, and maybe McIlrath and try to cut ties with Staal and Girardi which would (on top of Boyle) create some nice cap space depending on how it’s done (i.e. Buyout/retained salary trade).
    I believe it was Gorton not Chiarelli who layed the groundwork in Boston. He’s a smart hockey mind and may be able to maneuver the cap constraints the Rangers find themselves in now. It would be prudent to buy out Staal. I don’t think he’s worth free soda in the acquiring teams locker room. Girardi is an Iron man and may be tradeable in the right deal. Staal may waive his NMC to go with one of his brothers who knows.

  • AV should have given Raanta the start in game 4 …. simple as that …. King/ Queen or who ever ,doesn’t matter …. Pittsburgh had him in Game 2 as well but he made a few saves in that game.Sieveqvist sucked and the coach has no balls to make a change.Not saying they would have won but you gotta try something and give the other team a different look.

  • Too much dipsy doo for the speed they have.

    I’m still too mad to post anything relevant.

    Once I stop tasting the vomit of what was this playoff run ill post more coherent and rational thoughts.

    Until then who don’t outthink has the best golf handicap of all the Rangers ?

    • Mikeee,

      I feel the same way dude.

      Gonna give this a few days, then put some of my thoughts in writing.

      Way, way too soon for me to come to any conclusions quite yet, however I do have one question.

      You guys remember at around the time the league was transitioning to a fast player league? Torts was fired, Sather said some things as to the direction of the league, and we saw an influx of smaller (quicker) players and teams succeed?

      Well, has that started to change again to more of a physical two way game?

      Was thinking about this and am curious what guys like Dave, Chris and Kevin think about this.

  • Not once during the season did this look like a team capable of making a Cup run. Slats/Gorton made some questionable deals the last few years attempting to push us over the top. They didn’t work, and now it’s time to pay the piper. We’re old and slow, and the farm offers little immediate hope. For those here old enough, this feels like 1975 again. Suggestion to Gorton: if you’re gonna trade the King during next season, don’t do it to a team that will be at the Garden a week later.

  • Look at the bright side; we will never be subjected to Boyle and his $4.5MM per in a Ranger uniform again.

  • I have been watching the nyr since 1962 which tells you that I am probably old and stupid. But I must disagree with yours and everyone else’s opinion that Lundquist is exceptional. I believe that his record has been good primarily because he was the beneficiary of exceptional defensive play in front of him. I rank him behind Price, Holtby, Bishop, Quick and Crawford to name a few.

    Girardi and Stall have slipped, possibly due to battle fatigue. They took Boyle, another former great but well past his prime, for Stralman which hurt. AV continually avoided McIlrath who certainly can defend but is not an attacker. This, coupled with the fact that AV bet everything on a rush attack forsaking fore-checking completed this year’s failure. Renting E. Staal and Yandle was an expensive and failed gamble justified by this thing about Lundquist’s window. NYR, therefore, need a rebuild and not the usual patch job starting by dealing/not signing the following:

    Nash, Girardi, M. Staal, Glass and Moore. I assume that Boyle and E. Staal will be gone. They should solicit an offer they can’t refuse for Lundquist The no move/no trade clauses will have to be manged to bring this about. Some of these moves should return young talent or high draft picks. Let the audition of fresh bodies begin..

    • Tom

      Now your the kind of veteran that AV should want on his team, one with a brain. Thanks for a well thought out post…..Are you listening Jeff ????

  • This team as it is now, is way TOO SOFT ! Look at the Capitol vs Flyers series. Game 5 ,TJ Oshie ( not a fighter by any means) took on Schenn ( who crossed check a Capitol the night before, causing him to leave the game.. Do you have any idea the message that sends to both Teams,?? The Caps know a teammate has their backs, The Flyers know this team will not be pushed around. Victor Stalberg gets his teeth knocked out and Letang skates the rest of the series without a care in the world. The one player who would have definitely confronted him ( Mcllrath) is benched??. But any other teammate ( Miller, Krieder) should have made the same move Oshie did to Schenn. No heart, no we have your back, just OH! it must have been done accidentally. The coach ( AV) lives by the turn the other cheek philosophy, team shows the same mentality as their coach, he had a Cup winning team in Vancouver, but his soft approach to the game, especially during playoff time, cost them the Cup.

      • Very revisionist of you.

        He got scored on 3 shots he had no hope of stopping.

        And his offensive juggernaut team scored 8 times in 7 games.

        They got out coached too. Every player out there said the other team played a great system in that series.

        • So much that it still went 7 games…

          I watched every shift of that series and it was as close as it gets for two teams.

      • The Canucks awful defensive play cost them the cup against the Bruins. Lou was hung out to dry throughout that series, much like Henk has the past 2 seasons. AV has fully instilled his terrible defensive system in New York and its’ a disaster. He needs to go. Pond hockey is only successful if you have a roster that can outscore the opposition.

    • Totally agree. When the Rangers didn’t address letangs illegal, outrageous near decapitation of Stahlberg I knew we were in deep trouble. Letang, Crosby and Kessel should have been put on their butts repeatedly. I blame AV for this. I understand his hesitation to give the Pens pp which was firing on all cylinders more time but putting letang and the Pens was more important emotionally. Its easier to score another goal then it is to energize our team while deflating the pens

      DMac has his faults (every player does) but he should have played more both during the season and in the playoffs. He brings a physicality to the game that the Rangers sorely miss. Yes we probably outhit the Pens during the series but DMac brings the huge jarring hits that would have made the pens think twice about hanging out in front of/alongside the net not to mention they would have fired up the other Ranger players.

      Av has been successful and deserves some slack. however his refusal to adjust his systems to the realities of his personnel cost us this season. he should be on a very short leash next year

  • Chicago has nobody in their lineup who is a fighter.
    Need guys who play hard this system is passive.
    Changes need to be made players / system both
    Should be interesting,hank is top 3 in NHL,price quick
    After the poor 14 playoffs coming off a major concussion,
    Nash had 16 points in 19 games we were SO in 2 of the games
    It’s a fake narrative that he is not a playoff prefomer

  • Rangers need to sign Matt Martin, trade for Patrick Maroon and try and trade a few of the dead weight on this team, I live out west and saw many Ducks games. Patrick Maroon impressed me and is exactly what we need on the 4th line. Matt Martin you all know. Lindberg centers these two and that is our 4th line. Believe when I say Maroon can jump up to the 1st line on occasion but not be a 1st liner.
    Dave Backes would be a good pick up as well for the 3rd line.
    Also revisit Lee Stempniak. I have no idea why we traded him last year.
    There really is no defenseman worth the grab. I think Ryan Graves should be given a good look and Dylan McIlrath should lock up a spot. Skeij will be on the team.

    • Leather, you have my vote as our next Jr GM, I would not mind seeing a Evander Kane, Andrew Ladd, or a Milian Lucic ( too much $$$?) added to the list of potential new NY Rangers. Problems and they are big problems, CAP space, Girardi, Staal, Nash, and of course Hank, the contracts of these 4 make signings or trades very difficult. ( never mind they make way too much $$$$, they also have no trade clauses. ) Gorton has a brilliant hockey mind, but he has inherited a ship that is very Titanic like..

  • The Ranger organization doesn’t need to panic and dismantle this team. They need to bring in a new coach who understands what a defensive system should look like. Calling Mike Yeo.

  • there was too much inconsistent play brass was mia so was zucc kreider and others it is time for change on this team

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