No, Tanner Glass is not the answer

tanner glass

Ever since Cody Eakin laid a dirty hit on Henrik Lundqvist, one that got him suspended for four games, there has been talk that the Rangers are not tough enough. They need someone to retaliate in these situations. They need a deterrent to prevent hits like that. All this had led to discussion that Tanner Glass should be recalled and immediately inserted into the lineup. A certain beat write wrote about it, and I’m not about to link to that piece.

There is nothing wrong with thinking the Rangers need to add a little bit of fear to the lineup. I am one of the people who believed the Rangers should have tackled Eakin for that hit, and forfeited the powerplay. I have absolutely no problem with that line of thinking. However I draw the line at one-dimensional players that struggle in other aspects of the game. So no, Tanner Glass is not the solution to anything.

Guys like Wayne Simmonds and Milan Lucic are valuable because they stick up for teammates and can actually play hockey. Sean Avery was a very skilled player. Dan Carcillo contributed offensively. Tanner Glass does none of the above. He is a one-dimensional fighter, and he’s a player that would essentially gut any fourth line depth the Rangers have. This isn’t an indictment of Tanner the human being, who I’m sure is a helluva guy. It’s a statement that the Rangers are a better team on the ice with other younger, faster, more skilled players. It’s about wins.

It is not a coincidence that the fourth line –specifically running four lines of skill– has been a strength for the Rangers ever since Alain Vigneault decided it was time to move on from Glass. For all of his strengths in the locker room and sticking up for teammates, Glass was a detriment on the ice, dragging his linemates with him. Look no further than Dominic Moore’s resurgence in Boston as proof.

Here’s the dirty secret: There is no such thing as a deterrent on the ice. Glass’ presence in the lineup does not scare goons from making dirty hits. It’s the biggest myth in hockey. The game has evolved to such a point where players need to be able to actually play the game, along with sticking up for teammates. Funny enough, the Rangers traded away their one player that could do both.

If the Rangers feel they need to add an element of toughness to the lineup, then by all means go for it. But ensure the guy can contribute more to the lineup than just fighting. There’s more to hockey than retaliation and fighting.

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  • I can think of only one hockey beat writer who I trust less than the opinions of that beat writer…….NO ….WAIT…. No I CAN’T.

  • What the media and fans are now complaining about. I said this from the beginning of the season. No toughness… We had someone who fit the bill, but our coach would not play him (Mcilrath) now he was traded to FLA…If our coach wasn’t in love with the wonder twins,we wouldn’t be having this conversation. We do NOT have anyone in Hartford either … So now everyone is looking to trade for someone who can help us (Rousell,Maroon etc) and trade probably a valuable chip to get somebody here..When we had someone here all along.Just goes to show you that our pacifist coach and GM need to wake up and smell the coffee.

    • Spot on Joe,
      We traded a very serviceable, young, aggressive ,improving right handed defenseman for nothing! He outplayed Girardi and boyle and klein last year and would have made a very useful 6 th defenseman.
      Now watch us trade a good player to get someone we wouldn’t have needed.
      Dumb,Stupid, short sighted thinking on rangers management part…..just like trading Stempniak in the middle of the season and then desperately needing a right winger when st louis went down and more so when st louis came back and sucked in playoffs !
      Or worse when we let strallman go and resigned girardi and stall to huge contracts!!!!!!

  • i strongly disagree with the premise that mcilrath could “play hockey”. he was hardly a deterrent either. which makes me strongly agree with paragraph 5. the goons don’t care. they will do it anyway. biggest fallacy out there.

    • If you look at his small sample last year Mcilrath in that 13 game span he was the Rangers best or right up there defenseman. realistically he wasn’t given a real opportunity.Vigneault just didn’t like his game. You can’t tell me he’s worse than Girardi!!!! Your right he won’t stop the goons,goons will be goons, but he will stop the players like Eakin who suddenly become brave because we have no one.

      • You really want mcilrath out there vs hagelin and kessel? Cmon now. I mean we have problems but the answers are not in or from our org.

      • Well said again Joe, you are preaching to the choir!
        Thats what makes getting rid of him so crazy…
        Any imbecile could see he was better than girardi, boyle and klein for that 13 game span and who knows how much better he would have gotten if given the chance to play regularly..?????
        And now it looks like we could use him!

  • Good analysis Dave…….
    This lineup could use a LOT of toughness…….I said it before when a sydney crosby is able to abuse and intimidate the rangers thats a bad sign ………and only mark stall and the monster Zuccarello were willing to stand up to him!
    Hockey is still a sport requiring ‘ physical play’ …..
    The past 2 losses to pitts by a total 13-3 happened in part because pitts decided to set up in front of our net all night long, interfereing with the goalies ability to see the puck ,move in and out of his crease and have to deal with constant whacking of his pads when a shot is taken…..
    Totally agree we could have used a big intimidating defenseman who can play, and hit and make it uncomfortable to opponents crashing the net….. lets be honest girardi was horrible again last game……!!!!!!!
    Girardi and stepan should NOT dress against the penguins……one too slow , other too soft……

  • All they need is for some of the guys in the lineup to show some nads and stand up for their teammates. They don’t have to be goons. Guys like Kreider and even Nash have shown their willingness to mix it up. They don’t even have to win a fight. They need to show if someone tries to push them around, they’ll push back. This is playground 101. Not a hard concept to understand.

  • McIlrath could sit in the press box just as well as Clendening. Please remember for all of you who say that he’s not playing for the Panthers. The guy we got for him isn’t playing here either. In his Ranger career, albeit a short one, he was a +7, he played in the only Ranger victory against the Pens in last years playoffs. He will never be an offensive force, but he has proved he is dependable defensively and no doubt stuck up for his teammates. Unfortunately he does not fit AV’s mold. You know the mold that allows our #1 goalie to take a vicious head shot, Matt Puempel to take a shot to the face that concussed him, Vessey to be slashed at will, Grabner to be kneed. Look I am NOT in favor of a one dimensional “goon” type player. But I see a NEED for a player who can play and answer the bell for a teammate that get’s abused physically. I have to believe that it’s the coach who puts the reins on our guys. AV has the team HE wanted. I believe his mantra is:
    “Ranger TEAM
    For the Lady Byng”

    • Well said Jerry
      Anyone who doesn’t think the crosby’s, Letangs, gudos and eakins of the world will not take advantage of the rangers softness…….dont know hockey!
      I saw in McIlrath a player who gave all of his teammates confidence and believe we played better with him in the lineup.
      Nice guys finish last…….av is surely a nice guy…..

    • Yep. It’s AV’s team and if he wanted it different, it would be different. He sure as heck didn’t chase down the Calgary coach when he was in Vancouver.

  • Teams will continue to take liberties with us. Not because we don’t have that horrible hockey player who’s name I won’t use or because we don’t have Dylan.

    Teams will take liberties with us because they can. Because we can’t hurt them back in the ONLY way that matters. Our power play sucks. IF we could regularly score on the power play, teams might not want to take liberties with us because they’ll be afraid to put themselves in the box.

    Has anyone else seen teams get 5×3 like the Rangers do, and register 1 or less shots on goal?

    I’d be willing to bet, that if we had scored 2 or more goals on that 5×3 in Dallas, you wouldn’t have seen Eakin on the ice for most of the remainder of the game.

    That’s the only deterrent that will ever truly work.

  • Dave. Great piece and I have to agree with you on all points but one. Glass is one dimensional on the ice, however he added lots to a rather vanilla locker room. That comes from a number of players most notably, out captain.
    I am not in favor of him being brought up to play. We should be able to show an element of toughness from what we have here right now. Krieder, Miller and Klien. All three of them need to step up. CONSISTENTLY. This team can use some grit and abrasiveness up front and some physicality in our D-corps. Contrary to those here who view the ice through rose colored glasses this team as presently constructed will not take home the only prize that matters.

  • Team toughness or a player that is tough and can play Glass does not meet that criteria. Guys like Simmons & Lucic are hard to find. They need to stand up for each other it’s about TEAM togetherness and toughness

  • True enforcers can spread the word that if Bozo the clown doesn’t calm down, he’ll either get calmed down by the enforcer or his own enforcer will have to fight on Bozo’s behalf, so he’ll talk to Bozo.

    Tanner Glass is not an enforcer.

    Throw in his minus skill set in the other categories and his run is over.

  • The Jesper fast and Oscar Lindberg types are soft limited dimensional players. Good somewhat defensively, quick, but not irreplaceable. Neither player is a goal scorer, though useful on the fourth checking line and PK which I realize has its importance..
    Stephen is good, but soft and slow and over payed. If possible, offer some of these type players in a trade for more physical and tougher players with decent skill. They are definitely replaceable, especially if we can land someone with a decent skill set, and with that different style of more gutsy play in return.

  • Another reason that the “We need Tanner Glass” argument doesn’t make sense is that he would only be on the ice for 10 minutes or less per game. So any retaliation would be most likely not be immediate.

    • Bill, I am not in favor of Glass being brought up. That said “retaliation” as you phrased it doesn’t have to be immediate. Answering the bell, sticking up for a teammate can be anytime during the game and even games that follow. The Rangers were derelict in as much as there was lots of game left for Krieder, Miller and/or Klien to name three that could have sent a message by making life very uncomfortable for Tyler Seguin the rest of the game.

  • Yes he is the answer if the question is: “Who should not be called up from Hartford.”

    Answer: “Tanner Glass, Alex.”

    Alex: “Right… Go…”

  • I think it is fair to say that the references are truly to the main attribute that Glass offers, and not to Glass specifically. I have been preaching, and taking heat for deamnding team toughness for a long time. Seeing the need foe team toughness is not some Neanderthal flexing of machismo; it is seeking something that is a legitimate attribute among many necessary attributes in competition. The absence gets people hurt, or puts them in danger as we are seeing. And, no, just standing up for your teammates and not succeding doesnt do it. That just serves to show one isnt afraid. This isnt about manliness, it is about severe consequences for those who take liberties with things we hold dear, namely, our goalie and our finesse players, of which there are many. It is also about creating room for those same players and, also, taking a fair and legal toll on those same players on the opponent. We are a one dimensional team. Evolution of the league or not, competition never evolves away from intimidation to some degree. Get me Dylan back and get me some 21st century bangers to mix into the great skill we do have.

  • OMG! This is all so hilarious.

    First of all, we did not lose the last game because we weren’t “physical” enough or “gritty” enough. We were smoked because we were exhausted, injured and thoroughly outplayed by a far superior team SKILL wise.

    The Pens are NOT a physical team. Neither are the Hawks. The Kings are but when they were winning Cups, their physical players were their skill players. None of of those teams carry a Glass or a McIlrath–one dimensional borderline NHL players that play limited minutes when they do in fact play.

    There are no such thing as deterrents or “message senders” in the modern day game.

    Now, flip side with Glass is, he hardly plays. I can’t think of one game where he specifically hurt the team. Would I promote him? No. But he was part of a 4th line on one of the best teams in Rangers history two seasons ago. One that if not for injuries, makes it back to the SCF. He wasn’t the reason they didn’t.

    If, due to injuries, they need to call him up, it’s not that big a deal short term. My only objection to carrying him for any length of time is that his presence would negatively impact our cap situation, and I want the Rangers to have max cap space prior to the deadline to make a big move if one is out there to make.

    Either way, once the team is healthy, he has no place on this team as currently designed.

    Now, on to McIlrath. Please….I beg of you. Let the madness end! Can we please stop with this bizarre hero worship and examine some facts?

    Let me post once again this excerpt from the Panthers blog, Litter Box Cats–

    “Much has been made of Dylan McIlrath’s success last season in New York….. when paired with Yandle. Yet, by receiving that assignment, McIlrath benefitted from the same offensive zone use, and low quality of competition that Yandle was getting. In fact, McIlrath saw an even lower quality of competition than Yandle, the lowest of the Rangers 7-defensemen last season. Thus, he got the attendant boost, and his beneficial Corsi numbers got him traded for.”

    Translation–AV gave him sheltered minutes and mostly O-zone use. His numbers were a small sample in a controlled setting. Therefore, they are not an accurate indicator of what he would do if he played more or against better competition.

    When he DID play, he deterred NOTHING. Stepan had his ribs broken when DMAC was on the ice. Vesey was plastered multiple times in pre-season with McIlrath out there. He stops nothing. He sends no messages, at least none that have anything to do with winning hockey games.

    He was placed on waivers and NO ONE claimed him. NOT. ONE. TEAM. If he’s this essential piece, explain how that’s even possible?

    Once a deal was arranged and he went to Florida, he played one game under Gallant and all of three under Rowe. And in those three games, he’s averaged 7:25 of ice time. (Oh and BTW, under AV last year, DMAC played in half the games he was physically capable of playing in, and averaged more than DOUBLE the ice time! Yep, sure sounds like AV hated the kid. Maybe we should start taking the coach to task for OVERPLAYING him and not underplaying him).

    So all this evidence screams this reality–

    1) McIlrath was given ample opportunities by AV
    2) Not one NHL team thought he was worth taking a chance on
    3) Once the deal was struck with Fla, they quickly concluded he is NOT someone that can be given significant responsibility or ice time on a contending team.

    It’s all so very nice that so many of you have built up this totally false mythos about a barely marginal NHL player, but DMAC does NOTHING to make the Rangers (or any NHL team for that matter) better today. Maybe one day. He’s is still young, and young, big defenseman take longer to develop. But not right now.

    But go right on believing in your boy. That’s what fans do. Coaches and GMs deal with reality.

    The Rangers will be fine once they are healthy, play a more reasonable pace of schedule which is coming up, and then hopefully make a deal to upgrade the defense. If the can find a physical player, great! But that player has to be talented–NHL taleneted. Glass is not the answer and McIlrath would not have been either.

    • Thanks for setting the record straight Eddie. Dylan might make it as a NHL defenseman some day, but despite the howling on this blog, the entire NHL has determined that he is simply not ready to play at this level.

        • Thanks Peter!

          And what is Rowe thinking, benching the such a difference maker like McIlrath?! I guess he must have it in for the kid too, just like Gallant and AV!

  • No the last thing the Rangers need is too add more grit on their roster. Even though I am watching a gritty CBJ destroy the super talented Stanley Cup winning Pittsburgh Penguins right now. I am hoping Alaina Vigneault is watching this game so he can learn something about what it takes to win. However it is more likely AV and Jesper are watching chick flicks somewhere together…..

    • I guess this proves the Pens aren’t gritty enough either. Or, maybe they are just gutless. Here’s an idea…..Maybe they could trade for McIlrath? 🙂

      Let’s face it. The Rangers are done. Pens are done. Tampa is done. The season is over, because in the NHL, what you see in late December is most certainly what you will see in the Spring, right?

      Let’s just carve the Jackets names on the Cup and move on to the draft.

      • Eddie, take a Xanax & go to bed, you & Mythdoc are obviously too tired, like the Rangers last night. You’ll be better in the morning.

        • Paul (or it Walt?)-

          Can’t go to bed with my Football Giants playing. But I guess if they lose tonight, they will be gutless wimps too! 🙂

          • Giants are just as gutless as these Rangers. So Eddie, were the mighty Pens too tired tonight to play hockey? Should change your name to Excuses! x3, because you love making excuses for this team. I hope AV pays you well!

          • I find your use of the word “gutless” amusing. Have you ever played the game, or any competitive sport at a high level? The other team is out there trying to win too, and sometimes you just get beat. In the case of hockey, it’s a long season and you are going to lay some eggs. A one game losing streak doesn’t mean the team is gutless. It means they lost one game in a row.

            Wow, lots of pressure tonight. Can you imagine if the Rangers lose TWO in a row?! The coach should be fired immediately and players should be released if that happens.

            It’s our team……they MUST NEVER, EVER LOSE!!!!!!!

    • LOL!!! The image of AV & Jesper watching chick flicks together sent me into gales of laughter!! Far out! Mike Sullivan looking over at Torts after goal 7 with a wry smile on his face, trying to get his attention & Torts won’t look his way. Priceless!!

      • That was awesome paulronty, torts and sully once coaching partners now bitter rivals. Then Dubi calling out Crosby at the end, you got to love it when the game is played with passion and pride.

        • Agreed Bloomer, shame it’s not played that way here. I watched the Giants lose to Philly, but recorded the Blue Jackets. Really exciting game. I loved the score, but more than just the score I loved the way the Jackets played. They treated Crosby just as any other player and not like some precious commodity that must be revered.
          Loved the Sulli smile and look forward the the remaining 3 games between these two teams. PASSION!

  • I was surprised ducks moved maroon to oilers. Always liked him. Playing with very good linemates in edm so his scoring has been impressive. Prob would cost a bit too much to acquire. Plus theyd want D back.

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