Game Wrap-ups

Rangers hold on against San Jose as Kreider continues to roll


The Rangers put up a touchdown on the San Jose Sharks last night, barely holding on for a 7-4 win. It sounds weird to say they held on for a win by three, but they did allow the Sharks to get to within a goal –after being up by three– before scoring two empty netters. Chris Kreider led the Rangers with another multi-point game as seven different Rangers scored in the win.

The one troubling aspect here is that the defense again gave up a ton of goals, including three in the third period. This was a much closer game than it needed to be. There weren’t any weak goals by Antti Raanta, it was just allowing too much room for the Sharks to maneuver. As an elite NHL team, San Jose makes you pay. But the Rangers made them pay more.

On to the goals:

Rangers 1, Sharks 0

This was a great overall shift. Jimmy Vesey and Derek Stepan got in low on the forecheck to force the turnover and maintain possession. Stepan found Marc Staal at the high slot who one-timed it by Martin Jones. Staal did a good job of finding the open ice and calling for the puck on this play. Vesey and Mats Zuccarello with the screens in front too.

Rangers 1, Sharks 1


With the Rangers down two men, Brent Burns basically dry humped Rick Nash after he had a shorthanded chance. Nash broke his stick, and then it was a quick goal on the ensuing 4-on-2 rush the other way. Logan Couture had the easy tap-in from Joe Pavelski.

Rangers 2, Sharks 1


Good shift all around by the Rangers. This started with Adam Clendening feeding Nash for the zone entry. Chris Kreider worked low to maintain possession and got it to Ryan McDonagh at the point. He purposefully shot it wide, and Nash was there to bang the carom home. Credit Mika Zibanejad for going to the front as well, dividing attention low.

Rangers 3, Sharks 1


Kreider is white-hot right now. McDonagh sprung him down the wing on the “Kreider pass,” and he just roofed it over Jones. This is one Jones wants back though.

Rangers 3, Sharks 2


The Ranger failed to clear the zone after winning the faceoff, and never recovered. No one picked up Brent Burns, who took the Pavelski feed at the high slot and roofed it.

Rangers 4, Sharks 2


McDonagh made a perfect pass from the defensive zone to J.T. Miller at the blue line, who tipped it to Kevin Hayes, who got it across to Jesper Fast. Fast skated in as Hayes went to the back door, and delivered a perfect pass for the easy goal.

Rangers 5, Sharks 2


Mats Zuccarello forced the Sharks into a turnover, then got the puck to Derek Stepan. Jimmy Vesey got to the front of the net for the easy tap-in. Vesey’s first career goal. The first of many.

Rangers 5, Sharks 3


The Sharks gained the zone, and it led to Pavelski getting the puck to Burns, who ripped it by Raanta. What a shot.

Rangers 5, Sharks 4


Pavelski and Burns had great nights, didn’t they? This time, the defense forgot to pick up Pavelski in the slot, who was left free to tip the Burns shot by Raanta.

Rangers 6, Sharks 4

Zuccarello empty netter.

Rangers 7, Sharks 4

Michael Grabner empty netter.

A note about the charts below: I’m moving more towards scoring chances and away from Corsi. Need to account for quality as well.

Scoring Chances


The Rangers took it to San Jose in the second period, it was almost a massacre. But then they gave it all back in the third period. The Rangers have now squandered comfortable leads twice in three games in the third period. That’s not comforting.

Scoring Chance Locations


Stick with the theme above, the Rangers both generated a lot of high quality chances and gave up a lot of high quality chances. A good number of the chances allowed came from in between the dots and lower. That’s not a good thing. They do generate a lot, so that’s a plus, but hemorrhaging this many chances won’t bode well for the future success of the team.

As long as the offense continues to outscore their porous defense, the Rangers will win a lot of games. They generate and score a ton, but boy do they allow a lot too.

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  • They beat the most recent Stanley cup finalists with their backup goaltender and two starting defenseman out. I’ll take it.

    • Remember the Eddie edict, We only have 1 great player everyone else is just B line.

      • And the only way we win is because of the coach. I think this game shows its the other way around.

  • Kreider has been great, just great, but that line also needs to tighten up on the defensive end. I know +/- is a bad stat but even with 6 pts in 3 games Kreider is a -1 overall. Tighten up.

    McD is back.

    Vesey is a stud, absolute stud. He finally broke through but the chances he’s getting are off the charts. He plays like he’s been in the NHL for years.

    I know the contract, but Rick Nash is a tremendous player at both ends of the ice and a huge threat on the PK. Too bad that 2 on 1 with Stepan got messed up even down 2 men. Nice no call on the cross checks that Burns hit Nash with behind the net and then the Sharks come down and score. But make sure you call the phantom hooking call on Miller when the Rangers are dominating the Sharks. The refs love to kill the Rangers’ momentum. It happened on Saturday too with the BS “too many men.”

    Jooris is a very good defensive player, too bad there’s no spot for him.

    • Vesey reminds me a little bit Drury. Just his knack for finding the puck and knowing where it will go.

      • 100% good comparison. The kid should have 3-4 goals already based on chances. If he were more patient with the puck on Saturday then he would have had 2 for sure. Great signing as he will only get better from here. Natural hockey instincts.

      • Chris Drury–right-handed shot, center, 5’10” 195 lbs, known for clutch scoring and a fine 2-way game. Not particularly athletic or speedy or feisty, just a quiet, solid pro.

        Jimmy Vesey–left-handed shot, left wing, 6’1″ 195 lbs, a veteran of 3 NHL games, speedy/feisty.

        The similarities are endless–except for position, size, athletic ability, and experience.

        • I guess you missed “just for his knack of finding the puck and knowing where it will go”.

          Thanks for you contribution to this post!

          • I guess you missed the part where you compared a veteran center to a rookie left wing. Nothing cooler than a troll who pulls a fake innocent “who me?” routine every time they’re called on their nonsense.

          • I said his hockey sense reminded me of drury. Where did I offend you and troll this site?

            You really are turning in to my favorite “new poster” on here!

          • You troll the anti-AV crowd here every day, usually within minutes of the initial anti-AV post. But please, keep being disingenuous about it–it’s a good look for you.

            Overall the feeling is more than mutual. I’m not a big fan of people who are dishonest.

          • Kreider is the next Gordie Howe . Now there is an argument for every one to get started on . There will never be the next Howe as he was a one of a kind . Just trying to start something going forward . But i do think Kreider is the next coming of what we thought he would be when signed

          • Out of all the posts I put on here this is the one you decided to call me out on? When I say a player reminds me of another? Damn I’m sure you’ve been waiting for that juicy post just tear me apart on! Well done!

            And when I disagree with the anti AV sentiment, I don’t target certain posters just because I don’t like them. I stick to the topic and tell it like I feel it is. You went out of you way to rip apart who I thought a player reminded me of. Wow I’m so happy I got to waste my time this morning on who I thought a player reminded me of and the need to defend myself.

          • Again, you insult people daily around here based on their feelings towards Alain Vigneault. I felt comparing Jimmy Vesey to Chris Drury was a terrible comparison, and I explained why. If you can’t handle a reasonable response mixed with a little humor, I say that you’re being a little thin-skinned here.

            Short version: don’t dish it out if you can’t take it yourself.

          • Well for the third time I said a single aspect (read that as in only 1) of his play reminds me of drury. I didn’t say his height reminded me of Drury. I didn’t say the position reminded me Drury. I didn’t say his two way play or feistiness reminded me of Drury.

            If I said this goalie handles the puck like Brodeur would you disprove that argument by explaining how brodeur has a better glove hand?

            Jeez I can’t believe I’m wasting my time on this!

            But good for you! You really got me back for all my past insults!

        • style of play…

          style of play…

          How come you didn’t give us their eye colors? 🙂

        • Actually, Spozo is dead on!

          Not sure how long you’ve watched Hockey? (Not trying to be an ass, but you may be young.) Watching a lot of Chris Drury in his first 2, 3 years in the NHL resembles a lot of Vesey.

          YES! Chris Drury had BLAZING speed as a youngster, as practically half of his goals were either on odd man rushes and breakaways.

          Great similarities Spozo!

          • Drury never had blazing speed; he was a right-handed shot; defense was always a HUGE part of his game; and he was a center for most of his career. Not sure how any of this is negative, I’m saying that comparing a player like Vesey to Drury is absurd because of the following:

            Vesey is a lefty; he’s a winger exclusively; he’s bigger & more physical than Drury; and it’s too early to tell what kind of defensive player he is. I felt it was a lousy comparison then and I still do now. I chose to comment on Bozo’s post because he jumps on every fan who has the nerve to criticize Vigneault’s questionable lineup choices.

            I’ve been watching hockey for a long time and I hate rushes to judgment on a player, good or bad–Vesey is gonna make his own path in the NHL. So far the kid looks like the Jimmy Vesey who was advertised….and that’s enough for me.

        • @Pootie Tang…. Nice name btw :-)…

          So let me get this straight…. You’re ripping on a member here (Spozo) who has been a ‘Regular (well respected) BSB’er’ here for years for being negative towards your CONSTANT repetitive negative remarks?

          So in a sense Spozo. Is being called “negative” for his anti-negative remarks?

          Good grief, I think I’ve heard it all.

    • Why would AV bench McLlarth and limited Skjei in the 3rd period when your defensive is already a weak spot? What is Coach AV disdain for Dylan? The kid played a simple game and made a nice play in the first period when Joe Pavelski entered the zone, had a couple of hits and sticks up for his goalie while trying not to fight a smaller player. If that a player on the flyers, Tomas Hurti would have got crushed. Anyway, we bench the kid, AV is a jerk-off, great system he deploys, but continues to pick his favorites.

      • I have no answers my friend. Even if you loathed Dylan, why not play him to boost his trade value if nothing else?

        Coach didn’t want to play Dylan for defensive purposes because they were leading. Must have made the coach feel very special giving up, not one, but 2, 2 goal leads with Dylan safely on the bench so McIlrath could not do any harm to his team. lol

    • Brave of you to mention the D work of that line. They definitely need to be better there, but they are so damn exciting offensively they get some slack.

      • It’s not brave, it’s the truth. Both Burns’ goals are at their feet. It’s nice to produce in the offensive zone but there’s responsibility at the other end too.

        +/- is a bad stat for sure, but in this case it is indicative of poor defensive play by this line. I don’t think that it’s because they can’t play D, I think it’s because they may be going in too deep in the O zone trying to create goals but then cannot get back in time the other way when the opponents counter. It’s one of those “you better score if you’re going to play like that” type of thing.

        • Au contraire my friend, as I said before, quoting a great man, the truth is like poetry & people hate poetry.

  • All those chances in the third while playing only 5 defenseman. Hmmmmm wonder if fatigue could have been a factor?

    • I hate this coach, I really do. On one hand he played Glass because “he brought a certain element to the team’s game” and then benches McIlrath for protecting his goaltender.

      But keep rolling out Holden who has been a train wreck so far. I’m not a huge Dylan fan but the kid deserves to play given the players in front of him.

      • Welcome to the haters club. We have a really good team here but the elephant in the room is the coach.

        • 100% Paul.

          “But we went to the SCF…”

          “But we went to the ECF…”

          “But we made the playoffs…”

          I say, “but we didn’t win the Cup when we had a Cup worthy team…”

          • I will say this, just my opinion here, but thank god for the work Jeff Gorton did to “re-tool” the forward positions and depth because AV would call up Tanner Glass in a heartbeat.

            It is a really nice luxury to have a player like Jooris fill in for an injured player.

          • I like Jooris a lot and for the fact that he doesn’t have a regular role in the line up is a testament to the great job that Gorton did re-tooling there as you said.

          • you forgot Trotz, lol.

            Let’s face facts, AV is a terrible coach in many ways. His most successful year here was the (first) year he had the least amount of personnel input. Ponder that for a moment.

    • Third game of the season & playing only 5 D in the third in a compressed season that AV talks about. Like I said McDonagh will be fried by Christmas.

      • If McD is fried by playing 26 minutes a night, then we should trade him, since that means he is not the franchise D we think he is. Personally, I think he will hold up just fine under that workload. Especially if 3 or 4 of those 26 minutes each game are on the PP.

  • On the Sharks second goal the Rangers didn’t fail to clear the puck. Brady Skjei failed to clear it.

  • Comments from the game. Offense looks great can’t complain.

    Defense. Why did they bench mcilrath? You don’t bench people for doing their jobs.

    Holden is a train wreck. Missed pucks and fell a few times. Needs to work on his skating.

    Staal played really well. I was surprised.

    And where was the response on Nash being dry humped behind the net. That needs a physical response.

    • I agree…that was one of Staal’s best games in a while. Nice to see him score a goal on a very nice one-timer….have not seen that from him before really.

      I think his new flow is responsible for his improved play. I realize it has only been 3 games, but to all the Staal-haters on here, you have to admit that he has had a solid start to the season…something the Rangers desperately need from him.

      The McIlrath benching really bothered me. The kid dresses to bring a physical presence and ensure the Rangers aren’t taking any sh*t from anyone. I am not sure if the fight was 100% warranted, but in his mind, he sees his goalie go down hard after being tied up with Hertl. Protecting your goalie is rule #1 out there, so benching him for that makes no sense to me. Why does AV hate this kid?

  • the team looked good but there is a lot of work to be done and Ryan Mac congratulations on the birth of the first child see you tommorrow

  • I love our blue shirts, but from what I have seen so far we will go nowhere without defense. Over the past 6 years (minus last) we have had a solid blue line. We all know what will happen when Girardi comes back. You guys have commented on this multiple times. End of day solid blue lines win championships. I personally do not seeing games like this. I do love the speed of this team and the KZB line will be amazing, but our defense is disgusting. Really feel sorry for McDonough with his pairings. His career is being pasted into the wind when he gets no help. We need a lot of work on the back end.

    • Think KK will be an upgrade when he returns. At least he will play a full game. We seem to be fine until period three. A hangover from last year? complacency still there, to some degree.

  • I wish McIlrath would’ve played meaningful minutes in the 3rd Period last night. It was only the third game of the season. He wasn’t on the ice when the Rangers almost coughed up their lead. It was the third game of the season. It’s not like anyone would go back and say we would’ve made the playoffs if only we didn’t play McIlrath in the 3rd Period in that San Jose game in mid-October. This kid is stuck in no man’s land. Not good enough for AV and if the Rangers want to cut bait they’re doing themselves no favors but not showcasing him to other teams.

  • Kreider’s play so far is a great example of why you should not give up on good raw talent. Great start to the season. The late goals allowed…awful…that has to get cleaned up. And what’s up with Holden? he’s been awful

    • I will wait a little for jumping on Holden. Don’t think he has been awful, but playing his off-side (yes, it matters) on a new team and being paired with Staalled (train wreck) does not help. If playing his strong side for 18 TOI/game, seems like a competent 2nd/3rd pair LD.
      I think the forwards got a little goal happy and didn’t support Dzone as much in 3rd and also Burns is on of the top 3 D in the league now.
      Kreider = man amongst boys out there. Think Team USA could have used him in the WC?

      • Team USA could have used Kreider among others. I think Torts has some issue with Kreider. Remember the Kreider Hat trick vsa Vancouver when Torts was their coach? There was a bit of “In your face Torts” that night. He also got back very nicely on a back check last night showing a little defensive prowess and showing a very complete game so far. Could not be happier about that.
        Willing to wait before jumping on Holden, but he’s not been very good in all 3 games so far. Understand the change of system, wrong side etc, Unfortunately with the state of out D they don’t have much wiggle room for bad games.

    • You see that’s why I call it the brain test, not the eye test. To some Staal has been good, to others dreadful. To some Holden is solid, to others a train wreck. Just goes to prove that we don’t all “see” the game the same way.

  • Why is Holden playing his off-side when we have a much more competent alternative who actually plays the right side? AV does not want to put out his best lineup if it includes McIlrath and thats disturbing. Also, using stepan to take defensive zone draws, not using Miller at center, using fast in the top six, playing girardi……..
    Fire AV

    • Because AV doesn’t want to play DMAC for reasons only he knows and the press is too afraid to ask. Might as well put DMAC on waivers so Toronto or Columbus can pick him up right away. He’s playing so up tight out there, it’s unfair to him. My guess is that “he’s just a young player going through the process.”

  • Hey Yo Mikey: completely agree w/you. AV is an absolute clown !!!! plays their best d-man too many minutes in a game that he could have given him a break. —-(rangers controlled 90% of game)—-played holden 24 mins and sits mcllrath, i think, for all but one shift in the 3rd period. how much dumber as a coach can you get than that. Dylan’s just trying to protect his goalie and be a good team mate. ya just have to get rid of this guy (av) before he f***’s up another season. wear down your players now so there’s nothing left @ the end of the year when you have able bodies to use. mcllrath deserves much better.

    • in the quotes after the game, Raanta very much appreciated it while AV said he ‘didn’t see what happened except we had to kill a penalty’.
      Whistle to Whistle Wuss

      • AV needs to be coaching in a non contact hockey league, he did not see it???? He see’s what he only wants to see!! Unfortunately he does not see Mcllrath in the Rangers future!! What a waste..

        • You guys do understand that during his playing days, AV himself was a Dman and his primary job was to fight, right?

          AV just happens to know that those days are long gone, dead and buried.

          The Rangers were protecting a lead, have a weak PK, and were facing a Sharks team with one of the better PP units in the league. Not taking penalties at that time of the game was a priority for the Rangers. McIlrath didn’t listen, so, he gets to sit and think about it.

          As for his teammates, of course they appreciated Dylan standing up to that major goon, Hertl. I’m sure AV appreciated it as well. But as the coach, he knows there are things that are more important than currying favor with your teammates. McIlrath took a huge chance throwing punches there. He could have easily been assessed a 5 minute major and left the Rangers in a massive hole.

          • McIlrath held off swinging when Hertl turtled, when he jumped back up they both should’ve gotten 4.

            I like the up tempo, the hustle on the back check, but I think AV took too many rights when he played.

            Reminds me too much of last season’s start. Looks good on paper, but serious issues on D that will start to get exploited.

            Beware the ides of November.

          • Last year they were getting bailed out by Hank and Raanta to cover up their woeful possession numbers. This year they are actually outscoring the opposition. I guess the goals can dry up, but, it really looks like the Rangers have a powerful, up-tempo offense that simply attacks the other team in waves.

            Basically, the Rangers are looking like last year’s Penguins, minus Crosby/Malkin.

  • If McIlrath was benched for taking that ridiculous roughing double minor, I’m ok with that. You can’t take selfish penalties like that. Hertl wasn’t trying to hurt Raanta, they got tangled up. And if you are going to bother to take off the gloves and throw punches, throw punches. I know what Dylan did, taking it easy on Hertl, was a sporting gesture, but all he did was allow the ref fall back on Dylan’s rep as a great fighter and they stuck Dylan with an extra two minutes.

    In truth though, I think McIlrath was benched because he looked a step slow most of the game. Most of his breakout passes and D to D passes were inaccurate and were slowing down the Rangers’ breakouts, or worse, completely missed their target and went the length of the rink for icing.

    Some of you are questioning why Holden is playing. If you watch Holden closely, he makes tape to tape passes, makes good decisions on when to clear the zone by simply chipping out or off the glass, and uses his good gap control to force turnovers in the neutral zone and send the Rangers off on the rush in transition.

    The bigger issue I have is why are we even talking about McIlrath today? The Rangers forwards just morphed into the 2016 Penguins and took it to the Sharks. If it wasn’t for Pavelski and Burns this game would have been a 5-0 blowout.

    • Chris – people are talking about it because in the 3rd while McDiesel was pinned to the pine, the Sharks made a 3 goal game and 1 goal game and the D looked out of sync 5v5.
      10 goals allowed in 3 games is nothing to get too excited about from a Defensive perspective.
      Love the O, particularly the quick in-zone passing setting up grade A scoring opps. Forwards need to work on lifting the puck in tight, could have twice as many goals.
      Dare I say the PP is working. Very fun to watch.

      • First of all, I’m not trying to pick a fight, I know the McIlrath fans are a passionate group. I’m simply asking you guys to step back and look at things less passionately.

        Now, saying that, to simply assume McIlrath was the cure for stopping all those late goals is baseless.

        At this point, it seems that McIlrath is no better than Stu Bickel. A willing player that simply isn’t good enough for the NHL. I’m not going to try and analyze the kid’s psyche and conclude that his confidence is shot and that is why he looks so underwhelming out there. I’m going to trust the Rangers organization, which has a solid recent track record of identifying and developing talent, and assume that McIlrath is not playing because he’s not good enough.

        And to think McD isn’t capable of playing 26 minutes a night is simply an insult to the guy. We all say he’s a top D, well, that’s what top Ds in the NHL do. They play 24 – 27 minutes a night, especially when the rest of the D corps isn’t great. McD needs help, but it isn’t coming this year, the Girardi and Staal contracts are an issue and hinders going outside the org. to improve the D corps this year. The only hope is that Skjei develops quickly and can help share some of the load. Klein coming back should be a welcome addition, as well.

        • Chris A , Agree McIlrath is not Bobby Orr BUT he is far and away better than Girardi and Holden at this point and if given a chance to play regularly will Definitely develop into a better player than Klein. He is solid, knows his limitations, plays conservatively and has shown improvement every year. Plus, he has a booming shot, moves players from in front of the goalie and stands up for teammates. A solid number 2 or 3 right defenseman.

          • Skjei played about 18 minutes. 7:11 in the first, 5:43 in the second, and 5:13 in the third period.

    • Oh ya, you’re OK with that? Are you OK with Fast not riding the pine after a stupid penalty on the PK yet? Double standard there?

      • Fast has played over 175 games in the NHL, in almost all of them he has played well. He has proven that he is a dependable and trustworthy winger and PK’er. You don’t bench a player like that for taking a hooking penalty in front of his net.

        You do bench a player that decides to ‘throw punches’ with a scoring winger.

        That’s not a double standard, it’s called coaching. McIlrath has clearly been instructed to cut out the penalties. Until McIlrath wins AV’s trust, he’s going to be on a short leash. This works, it’s part of the process. Look at Miller and Hayes. They are now both counted on to play important shifts in the D-zone and both are now being used on the PK. This is how you develop players and coach them into being complete, two-way presences.

        • McIlrath wasn’t a step slow at all. Staal was a step slow all night and was beat several times along the boards. Dylan was given a xtra 2 which was BS. Hertlz put a stick on Dylan’s chin no call he then goes back at Tomas. They both dropped their gloves at that point. The xtra 2 was BS.

          • One of the first lessons I was taught in my sporting life was to never retaliate, because the ref tends to only catch the retaliation. And I will say this, whenever my emotions got the better of me and I would break that rule, my coaches would grab me by the collar and sit me down.

            There is a time and a place to settle scores, late in the second, protecting a one goal lead against one of the more explosive teams in the league, is not one of those times.

          • And McIlrath was a step slow, that’s why his breakout passes were wayward all night. It’s the same issue Girardi has. Both of them are too slow with the puck.

            It’s clear the Rangers are going to try and defend by playing offense, much like the Penguins did last year. To do that, the breakouts must be clean and efficient. McIlrath wasn’t helping in that respect, so, he doesn’t get to play.

          • Watching the encore right now and the kid passes were solid. Skjei bad pass on Sharks second goal he’s not benched . Skjei made several FCK ups last night but gets a pass. Fast takes a penalty, a lazy one with the team down a man.

          • Chris A, I’m not sure you’re going to make much headway on this issue. These are pure partisans you’re debating with.

          • I’m not trying to change minds. I just want to show these guys where I am coming from.

            These guys are knowledgeable and completely entitled to their opinions.

        • Complete nonsense Chris & an example of deference to authority. Fast has made so many mistakes on the PK, THAT should be obvious to you. The Rangers lost in St. Loo because he was sleeping. That’s 2 points lost.

          • You’re blaming that St. Louis goal on Fast? I blame that goal mainly on Girardi.

            Girardi wandered from ‘home’, the crease, to pressure Tarasenko who was standing next to the boards while on the goal line. Tarasenko read that Girardi was attempting to pressure him. Once Girardi was in no man’s land (halfway between the crease and the corner Tarasenko was standing in), Tarasenko easily slid a pass through Girardi to a wide open Pieterangelo.

            Fast couldn’t really suck down fast enough because his assignment off the draw is to cover the weak side. I guess you could make the argument that Fast should track Pieterangelo down to the crease, but if Girardi simply stayed home Pieterangelo would have been covered. It’s very possible that Fast’s read was to let Pieterangelo go knowing he had help down low.

            I’m annoyed with Girardi on this play because he vacated the most dangerous area of the ice, the crease, to pressure an attacker in one of the least dangerous areas of the zone. Girardi staying home and stalemating Tarasenko would have bought enough time to allow the PK to reset from their faceoff posture to their in-zone posture. They would have had a better chance to deal with Tarasenko in the corner once they reset.

  • Fire AV lied to the media….indicating the Rangers did not kill the penalty on McIlrath after his tussle with Hertl. Brain fart by his candy ass showing his bias towards McIlrath. Ranger D without DMac is softer than the marshmallow man. McDonagh can’t even defend himself. Soft but skilled.
    AV has no concept of TEAM defense. Our players chase the puck frequently and instead of taking out the man they try poke checks that seldom work.
    It really is sad there is alwAys 1 thing off with the Rangers from winning the Cup. Fire AV is that 1 off. Decline of Staal and Girardi coincides with the hiring of this clown.

    • Did Vigneault really say this?

      McIlrath is playing with so little confidence right now; take the kid out of his misery and trade him to the Devils. They will develop him properly.

  • Fire AV !!!!
    Why wasn’t Fast benched for taking a bad penalty while on the PK ???
    Why wasn’t Nash benched for getting tied up behind the Ducks net while killing a 5 on 3 ???
    Here AV goes again ……4th or 5th year as a coach that he has had the MOST talented team or top 3 and has won as many stanley cups as a coach as I have!!!!!

    • Nash should have NEVER been even close to the back of the net on a 5on3 let alone 5v4. Dumb hockey play made to look even worse when Burns held him down. Stupid hockey 101.
      Fast is not good on the PK. Takes a penalty on the pk and doesn’t even tie up the man. He has a very bad habit of playing with one hand on the stick which leads to ‘holding’ calls and inability to control his stick.
      Thought it was Haze’s best 2 way game.

      • You’re right, but that was a clear cut scoring opportunity. I don’t know about you, but I was pretty certain we were about to see the Rangers score a 3v5 shorty on that play.

        If Nash or Stepan were really trying to force a play to happen, I would 100% agree with you and call that a dumb play. If the refs enforced the rules in that instance, the Rangers would have been properly rewarded with a penalty.

  • I think it is naive to believe that AV is the sole reason for Dylan being glued to the bench during the final period as many here seem to believe. Beuk I am sure has a lot of say and input in these matters. Yes, the kid stood up for Raanta but he needs to learn to finesse it so that he does not put the team in a power play hole. What better time for a coach to make the point than the final period with a 3 goal lead?

    I like the kid, but he has a lot to learn still. That being said, I’d like to see him learn playing with the big club all season even if it means sheltered minutes. Poor Dan Girardi’s body simply can’t take the strain of NHL play any longer and he will be on IR at some point it seems.

    • I think there’s a real chance G retires after this year. His body’s giving out on him. I’ll miss him. As much flack as he takes here, a lot of it deserved, he’s been a warrior for this team for a long time.

      • No one takes that away from Dan, but the guy is flat out slow, can’t skate, and now has become injury prone. I stated that if he had any pride, he’d hang it up, and take a position within the organization, let’s hope he gives that some very serious thought !!!!!!!!!!

    • Pete you can’t be serious, AV dictates who will play, or sit. Beuk follows orders like a good soldier would, so please put the blame right on AV’s footstep !!!!!!!!!! I hate to say it, but the guy is vindictive, and I’ll bet he’s, DMC, gone by the end of the month !!!!!!!!!!!

    • Sabotaged them right into a 7-4 win. If AV keeps sabotaging the Rangers like this, we are looking at a parade in June.

      • It was 5-4 with just under 2:00 minutes left with the Sharks on the attack. Last 2 Ranger goals empty net. Final score was misleading. Given time like any D the puck gets moved up well. But any kind of pressure they fold a scramble ensues and pucks end up fired on net. It’s only three games let’s see what the play is after 10. Wingells beat Staal several times along the boards.

  • Vesey has been hustling and it was saweeeet to see Zucc and Steph make his first goal hit the back of the net…

    Maybe Pootie and Spozo can agree and we can say he looks like he could be related to Drury? hahahaha baby Drusey

    Grabner baby, keep that coming eh!

    Stall was looking good, continue to bring it #18

    Fast and Hayes with a nice speedy hookup…


    keep rolling!

  • I know it is still a small sample size, but thus far I’ve been impressed with Clendening’s play. Yeah it is a lousy statistical indicator, but he was +3 last night. So far he seems to have been a savvy move by Gorton.

    • And this is after going 2-1 against three teams that went further in the playoffs than the Rangers did last year.

      I’m scared to see what happens if the Rangers manage to drop one against Montreal or New Jersey this year.

    • it may have something to do with the coach’s own words which validate fan suspicions:

      Vigneault: . “to tell you the truth I’m not sure what happened on that play. I haven’t looked at the replay, I just know that we had to kill a penalty and we didn’t.”

      So here we have a coach who readily states he was unaware of what happened on a particular play but was certain the end result was something which in fact did not occur.

      It is just 1 anecdotal but new data point confirming in some fan minds this coach is completely mishandling this particular player.

      Like I said elsewhere, the kid’s confidence is shot. Trade him to the NJ Devils because they are the type of coaching staff and organization which would do well with McIlrath.

      • I would be very surprised if the AV quote wasn’t posturing. I wouldn’t be so sure to think the coaches in the NHL are transparent with the media in the post game interviews. None of us are in the room and really have no idea whether or not AV is ambiguous with the players.

        My rule of thumb is- there is nothing to take away from interviews; nothing is said of importance. It is just a reality of professional sports.

        There’s a greater chance AV is trolling you with a quote like that than there is that he is giving you an honest/complete answer.

        • posturing? what does he need to posture for as it relates to a fringe player?

          this makes no sense Hatrick.

          • A head coach of an NHL team has no interest or care to give you any insight to player/personnel decisions; nor should he. Don’t take it personally.

          • not taken personally; just see no evidence of posturing here, nor is it a situation where seasoned coaches typically postures. no worries.

          • I see posturing as any answer absent of honesty. I believe AV’s “I didnt see the play…..we didn’t kill the penalty” is a simple disingenuous answer for him to get to the next question. I do not believe that is the reality of the situation.

      • This is standard patter from AV, he seems to have a hard time grasping what goes on, on the ice. He’s far from the sharpest knife in the drawer, which is beyond the ken of his ardent supporters.

        • Please don’t confuse me as an ardent supporter. But like I said above, it’s an erred exercise to form opinions based on post-game pressers…… rarely is there anything said of substance.

      • Great point AD
        AV has no idea what happened on the play but benches McIlrath because of his play……..??????????? Clueless…….
        With better coaching we would be 3-0…when you outplay a team you should win….

    • I was on his side until last December when Girardi got hurt and kept running him out there until he had to come out and kept on playing Jim when his game wasn’t up to an acceptable standard.

      His personnel decisions have barely made a lick of sense since.

      • I am absolutely with you on that. Personnel moves over the past 3 years have gotten progressively worse, it seems. This year will be interesting as there is no question we are in a ‘regrouping year’.

        You could say that I unhitched my figurative wagon last year. This year, I’m watching to see where the caravan goes.

      • I recall stating that was criminal, and got into a heated debate with Eddie, a true AV supporter, and that’s also when I started disliking him as I do today, AV that is, not Eddie !!!!!!

    • “The anti-AV, pro-McIlrath contingent is out of control.”

      Unfortunately, THIS is why I don’t post as much anymore Trick.

      Sad but true..

        • Same here buddy!

          I LOVE the articles and NEVER miss any of them either.

          BSB will always be my go to home for anything Rangers. However, the repetitive, negative sentiment expressed by certain members has become quite overbearing. It’s now to the point where I will only read the comments if I’m in a good mood. I don’t think I’d be able to contain myself otherwise on a bad day, and it would do nothing but add fuel to the fire….

          So, I’d rather just read what Dave and the gang has to say.

    • Everyone is entitled to their opinions for sure, but I can rattle off why I think the coach should be fired and why I think that McIlrath should be playing, as I have pointed them out along the way.

      Instead of making a comment about the posters, please tell us why you feel the way you do on the topics. Then there is information for further discussion.

      Not trying to be adversarial but comments like this with no reasons attached douses the flames more than having discussions that result in disagreements, IMHO.

      • See my responses to those who commented on my original above post. Plenty of substance for you.

  • Clendening has been “ok” in my view. Losing Yandle magnifies the club’s need for offensive-oriented defenseman, so that plus “ok” play makes him a staple for now. But in the handful of games I’ve seen him play as a Ranger, Clendening makes 3-4 subtle mistakes each game that will catch up with him in due time. Hopefully he can make adjustments and reduce this, otherwise after maybe 15 games or so this will be more problematic.

    • I’d like to see Clendening and McIlrath split time on the third pair this year and see who develops quicker and wins a job.

      Clendening has not really stood out and made a difference, yet. If one of those two step up, they deserve the role. Of course, I would prefer either of them in the lineup over Girardi.

      • Agree as well, but Clendening has a skill set in short supply on this squad; PP savvy and puck moving skills, but he has no points.
        Would rather see Diesel split with Girardi but won’t happen. If Girardi is out for an extended time really need to use Diesel at 3RD. Having Shea and Holden (both inconsistent) play on their off-side is not the short or long term answer.
        10 goals in 3 games.

        • maybe I am misunderstanding your point but do you think splitting games between McIlrath and Girardi is a better approach to reducing goals against?

          If so, I cannot agree. I believe Girardi is our worst defenseman as of today, and should be made a player/coach with a firm job offer in hand upon retirement. I love his historical service to the Rangers but club ALWAYS above player, in my view, and we have it backwards with Girardi.

          Hence why I believe Clendening and McIlrath should be rotated if we go that route. Girardeau wouldn’t be in the mix for me.

          • Exactly, Girardi is done. Even after three months of offseason he still couldn’t skate freely during the preseason.

            Girardi is now Wade Redden, during Redden’s Rangers years. It’s ugly and it’s only going to get worse.

          • My point was Girardi to going to play as long as he is healthy. My preference is to play Mc Diesel as 3RD regardless but that won’t happen given money owed DG and AV’s unwillingness.
            Clendening is a stop gap at best.

      • Am I reading this correctly, we agree on something?????? Now let’s see if that plan can be implemented !!!!!!!!

    • I don’t think I’ve seen him make that many mistakes, but I agree he has not been perfect. His passes have been pretty good in my eyes. At $600,000 and with a glaring need on the blue line, I think he was a savvy move. Sure, Trouba would be a lot better, but until they land someone like that Clendening seems to be deserving a regular shift.

      • They are subtle mistakes that opposing teams have only come close to making us pay for. every player makes mistakes so I am not looking to overly critique Clendening but think this bears further monitoring, for sure. And no doubt Clendening at $600k is excellent value for our team, especially considering where he contributes and the loss of Yandle.

  • People see Clendening and think Stralman. Not apples to apples but there are also plenty of others that did not work out…Gilroy, Caber, etc etc
    Def worth a gamble but there are reasons he was cut from Edm and traded or released 5x in 20 months.

  • Enough is enough.

    To the very vocal pro-McIlrath/Fire AV crowd: This is your final warning. Read the commenting guidelines. If you don’t play nice, I will ban you.

  • Hi everyone! I have just a quick moment. Caught some of the first three games.

    Seeing a team that has the quickness and four line depth that was the hallmark of AVs first two seasons. Very, very exciting and fun to watch.

    Guys look re-energized and re-focused. The long rest this summer was good for them.

    Last year, I said the key to winning a Cup were huge years from Kreider, McDonagh and Yandle. Turns out the former two were just ok and Yandle was good but not great. Result–uneven season.

    Just theee games in, perhaps I was simply a year ahead of myself. Kreider, at long last, MAY have finally arrived. Wow, what a start! Has he finally figured it out and is he ready to finally take his place as one of the true stars of the league in reality as opposed to theory? McDonagh may make a case for Norris consideration. It’s early, but I’ve said all along, we have no chance at all without star power. Perhaps now Hank will have some company. If we now can boast some legit top tier weapons that the other teams legitimately fear, that changes the narrative and will go a long way towards covering up some of the blemishes on this team.

    Really, really like the kids. Vesey and Buck in particular. But how can it be that they are succeeding? I thought AV hates the kids! 🙂

    Hank is off to a slow start. Big deal. Other than last year, he always gets off to slow starts. He will be locked in come January. He always is. If the Rangers make a deep run, as always, it will be largely because we have a perennial Vezina candidate in net.

    It’s so heartwarming to see all the Minions throw their undying love and affection to McIlrath. Brings a tear to my eye. Such loyalty. :). Obviously, the whole “play the undertaker” narrative is totally overblown relative to his skill set. But it makes for a fun read, I’ll say that. 🙂

    So let me get this straight, we’re 2-1. We lose to a team that’s arguably the favorite to come out of the West. We beat the defending Western Conference champs, and we beat our arch rival who we hadn’t beaten in two years. And we’re doing it without arguably our most reliable defenseman (Klein) in the lineup. And yet the coach is an idiot and needs to be fired ASAP. I guess that means all the good things that the Rangers are doing thus far (up tempo, high octane offense) is in spite of AV. The defensive struggles? That’s ALL on AV. Makes perfect sense.

    Besides, how can McIlrath and the rest of the defense not be shining right now? I thought we had the most brilliant defensive mind in Bueke whispering in AV’s ear and setting him straight, and providing a major upgrade over Ulfie, who was the devil’s spawn last season. Or so went the narrative last year. 🙂

    Ok, back to debate coverage prep. Always fun to check in. Relax and enjoy. I think we have a fun, exciting season ahead!

    Best to all of you, even if we disagree!

    • Why say anything to you? I may be kicked out for disagreeing. Only people that agree with you can speak.

      • No need to be passive aggressive.

        The whole point is that every post is being taken over with “fire AV” or “play McIlrath.” Enough is enough. The whole hijacking posts is old, especially since people aren’t driving conversation, just yelling and calling names.

        Be respectful.

  • Looks like we’re going to have to score 4-6 goals to have a chance of winning a game. A defensive trade is coming methinks.

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