There are many different types of leaders

henrik lundqvist ryan mcdonagh chris kreider

With the trade of Ryan McDonagh, the Rangers are looking for a new captain. Discussion has naturally shifted in this direction with McDonagh in Tampa, and it’s not hard to see why. There were questions about McDonagh’s captaincy from the start, questions that have since been amplified since Larry Brooks noted that the Blueshirts might be looking for a more vocal leader in the locker room.

I don’t expect one to be announced until next season, as there are still trades to be made, probably including players that have an ‘A’ on their sweater already. But that shouldn’t stop us from looking at the various types of leaders, and how the locker room needs a good blend of leaders to address all personalities, and most importantly to complement the coaching staff, wherever the team goes in that direction.

McDonagh was a quiet, lead by example kind of guy. The same type of leader as Brian Leetch. Leetch expected that players would follow based on his effort night in and night out. He wasn’t the type of guy who would get in someone’s face and call them out (privately, in the locker room). That’s the same time of leader McDonagh was.

On the opposite end of the spectrum is the Henrik Lundqvist leader, the Mark Messier type. Messier was vocal, knowing how to push the right buttons to get the most out of the team behind closed doors. I have no insight into whether Lundqvist is pushing the right buttons, but we’ve seen him get in player’s faces. It’s not a McDonagh leadership route, but it’s a leadership route. Which brings us to a critical point that Justin brought up on Twitter this morning.

There is no wrong type of leadership. Ok, that’s not true. There are people out there in leadership roles who shouldn’t be there. But assuming the person identified as a leader of an NHL team is the right guy, then there is no wrong method to how someone can lead. Confusing, and I don’t think I expressed this thought as clearly as I wanted to, but I think you guys get my drift.

Alain Vigneault is a coach that likes to leave his locker room to the players. Same as Mike Keenan. Keenan was successful because he had a complement in Messier, who kept the locker room in control with his ability to get in someone’s face in a manner that netted positive results. AV had McDonagh, a deserving and effective captain, but not someone who would call a teammate out in the locker room.

And therein lies the challenge coming to the Blueshirts this offseason. It’s clear a coaching change is coming. The personality of that coach will matter, since it should have an impact of the player chosen as captain. The personalities in the room matter as well. Some respond to in-your-face leadership. Others to a more laid back approach. Too much of one, and you alienate a personality type in the locker room. Too much of the other, and the same thing happens. Balance is key, and balance is what should be driving the major offseason decisions looming for the Blueshirts.

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  • Dave, what makes you so sure of the coaching change?

    I am all for it, and I think everyone is all for it (especially on this blog), but from the comments I have seen from JG, it is not clear to me that he is all for it.

    Here are the JG quotes I read about AV so far.

    from SNY…

    “We have 18-19 games to go, like I said when we talked about what were going to do, AV is a good coach, he has been a really good coach here, a good guy, knows the game, how to play. We will sit down at the end of the year and talk about where this is going and get his input find out what he wants to do and if he is a fit and go from there.”

    from ESPN radio….

    “To be perfectly honest, I haven’t really thought about whether AV will be here or not.”

    • Subtext: it made no sense to fire the guy now, so close to the end of a season and with all the trades we were hoping to make.

      Did you guys catch in the most recent presser when Gorton said “I want the fans to know we hear them”? Translation: AV will be gone as soon as the season ends.

    • He hasn’t thought about AV for next year. To be perfectly honest! Somehow I’m not sure he’s being honest, let alone perfectly. If he is, he needs to go as much as AV does.

  • Fire AV.

    Continue the rebuild:
    Trade Namestnikov and Spooner for 2nd round picks before the draft.
    Trade Zucc but only if there is a 1st coming back.
    If you don’t win the draft lottery, try to package draft capital to move into top 3.

    Suck next year for Jack Hughes.

    In 2019-2020, most of the guys we just traded for will be NHL ready/available.
    ?? – Chityl – 2018 1st rounder
    Howden – Hayes – ??
    Fast – Andersson – ??

    Skjei – Hajek
    Shattenkirk – Lindgren/Rykov
    DeAngelo/Pionk – Gilmour


    This has a making of a good team for years to come.

    • Dunno about your first suggestion. I’d like to see what Vlad N can do with Spooner on his wing. We might catch some chemistry with these guys and they are still young enough to be part of our renaissance.

    • We have enough picks for 2018 draft. Best to package them for a more sure thing in the draft. I am not interested in a whole team 3 years from now that have the same expiring RFA contracts. That’s when a great future team gets busted apart. Don’t tease me! Ideally your contracts are staggered across age and quantum.

    • You don’t trade either right now, if you do trade them there will be plenty of time to do so — at next year’s trade deadline when they’ll both probably fetch a 1st. First thing though is to sign both to term deals that are cap friendly (which will also make it easier to trade them if that’s the route you want to take).

      • I agree tanto….see what you have and if Namestnikov and Spooner aren’t it you maximize their value at the trade deadline time.

        Hard to speculate what Groton is doing until after July 1

        My hope is it is a full rebuild

        If it is a full rebuild then we need to tank again next year.

        Not being in the top 5 at this draft to win meaningless games also a thing we must avoid

        shoot for Jack Hughes in 2019

        Whomever we select this year and next year were exactly the type of players that were missing in order for us to win the cup

    • Can we see Vlad play a few games before you all ship him out.

      The dude has some talent – I’m pretty sure your going to like what you see.

    • no way you are getting a first for zuc. he is a pp specialist right now. barely getting shots on goal lately. I have no idea why they are holding out on his value. unless teams are only offering a 4th rounder or something. he doesn’t have the pedigree of nash to get a first just for being rick nash.

      I would try to use zucc to move our firsts up. maybe eat some of his remaining $.

      I would like to keep hayes spooner and names around. quite the logjam. who knows how ready andersson/chytil are for f/t center duty?

  • Nice perspective, Dave. Now that a coaching change is inevitable, thank you for moving the conversation in a direction that recognizes both the strengths and weaknesses we saw in play. Gorton is exactly right. AV has been a good coach, good for the Rangers, good for the league. He got close, no cigar. His style and methods are not a fit anymore. Give him our best regards and send him on his way. He’d be a very good fit with other teams I can think of.

  • If the coach gives you the hairdryer, the captain gives the pat on the back.

    If the coach is running drills, the captain points out flaws quietly 1 on 1.

    If the level of effort isn’t there, the Captain yells at everybody, pulls specific offenders aside and challenges personally. Messier didn’t even do the latter, just gave the stare of death.

      • Someone on another site posted Martin St Louis being part of coaching staff next year. Rangers have to be careful here. Lots of former Oilers are running that team now and it’s a bit of a mess. Tampa Bay got it right with Cooper. Bruins got it right with Cassidy. Gorton has to find the “right guy” to lead and develop next year’s young squad!

        • There is a difference between STAFF and the head coach (Cooper and Cassidy). I don’t think JG is handing this team’s control over to a coaching neophyte.

      • Messier deserves less than zero consideration for any coaching position with the Rangers.

        Basically, his resume is “I’m Mark F-ing Messier, hire me”. Did we all forget his little bit of grandstanding followed by public pouting before AV was hired?

        No thanks, the Rangers already went down that idiotic path with Trottier. Trottier was a tire fire and he actually had been an assistant coach in the NHL. Granted, it was with the almost bankrupt, almost leaving Pittsburgh, post-Mario, pre-Sidney Pens, but that was, technically, an NHL job.

        Can we all agree to bury the ridiculous idea of giving Messier his coaching wings and focus on actual professionals to replace AV?

      • I am personally hoping Messier and Leetch are given a shot with the young kids.

        I would buy a ticket to go see a game at the garden for that one.

      • I love Messier but I certainly hope not for the Rangers. What coaching experience does he have?

        And God knows HE drove Zubov away after the 1994 Cup because Messier thought Zubov was too soft a player. P.S., 20 year career later…

        Granted things have changed and that was a long time ago, but the Rangers have zero margin for error with the next coach pick. Using it as a “test” for an inexperienced coach is a recipe for disaster.

  • Leadership is a subject I can easily discuss having been one in the Marines as well as having leaders I had to follow….both good and bad….

    When we used to helocast….repel…fast rope in training as the Leader I was the first one to go…but would tell my Men if this was combat….I am not the first to go then we would do it again in combat mode.

    Leaders are magnets and as they go, rest will follow. Leadership is never about being worried about being in a popularity contest and I think this was McD’s Achilles heel and why I think he will blossom again in Tampa Bay.

    A Leader should never be afraid to stand up to his superiors either. Leaders bring tough balance to a unit of men. In this new era with players making more money than the coach, union rules preventing certain approaches a coach has now become the teacher not the coach. This is not good.

    AV singled out JT because he could but he can’t do that with the upper echelon vets….and that is something that needs to change….. A mid night practice as a punishment should be allowed because for sure a reward of a day off is surely accepted by the players union.

    As a Coach it all falls on you when things go bad and you point to your men when all is good. You protect your players and never ridicule them in public but you certainly give your piece of the mind one on one

    A Captain will never allow a teammate to berate a coach either in the media or in the locker room. A captain is first in on a player in a dysfunction and tell the coach he has this. Then use the appropriate approach to handle it.

    AV is a great assistant coach material not head coach material.

    Someone mentioned Quenville….he is a great coach because of his leadership….so is Darryl Sutter. Sadly though in this new era Darryl Sutter would be a great assistant coach.

    This Czech coach might be the route to go but for balance Sutter would be an awesome Assistant Coach and I would look into Scott Stevens as the coach for the D, Neidermeyer and Leetch good candidates too.

    Messier…. I don’t know why he was never given the opportunity anywhere so I am going to assume it’s his choice not to coach. But say he wanted to, he has to start as the Assistant first. He has all the tools to be an incredible head coach. He has to learn the shoes first….meaning I used to tell my men I wore their boots and they have not worn mine when I needed to stop a debate for whatever reason.

    As far as Captain, let them play again next year without one and let one naturally develop. I also would limit the A to 2. I think it was a mistake for us to have 4

    • Damn, there are a load of anti jarheads on this site. Leather knows that isn’t disparaging to him, I tend to agree with the vast majority of your post big guy…….

    • Very valid points and I concur with everything you said. Nicely thought out comment.
      I will say I have met quite a few marines and the one thing I have always found common with you guys is your willingness to drop the gloves with anyone at anytime. That by itself will put pansies like Mika in their place right away.

    • Can’t believe the downers. What you described is real and effective. There are other styles that may get positive results but can’t see why so many are opposed to your real life experience. Been there and understand how it works.

  • Our Captains will show themselves, in time.


    I never wanted summer to move so fast as I do this year!

  • Very back of the envelope, but after each of our RFA’s are signed, we will have roughly $10mil in cap room assuming the limit remains $75mil. I have no idea on how Staal or B.Smith buyout would impact that. 2-3 forwards would need to be added as well. Not sure Zucc is around come September. Lundqvist would be 11.33% of that Cap.

  • Who should the next Ranger captain be? Someone with a set of balls that leads and has his teammates backs. Someone who is fiery and gritty and gets under the skin of his opponents. Let’s see”… hmmmm…. I got nuthin

    • I have a strange feeling Kreider is going to step up “On the Ice”. Maybe perhaps with a lot of the older guys out now it also translates in the locker room.I know I will get a lot of criticism for that but that’s what my gut tells me with the current roster. He may not get the “C” but he may start acting like one with the “A”.

      I have more confidence Vesey will be in a few years.

      • Lol He’s actually probably the smartest player on the team from an IQ perspective but i am not convinced that translates to Hockey IQ. I just think he is going to show the younger players how to hustle and certainly be big brother on the ice.

        • Kreider has the tools for sure to wear a letter
          Zuc has it too

          the leader and Captain has to come from the new core, have to see who will emerge and by not having a C competition will bring out the best prospect for the C

          I can see Andersson and Lindgren competing for a letter in the future

        • Not anymore Spooner is the smartest far and away. I forget but it is either yale or harvard.

      • And if Kreids does not have his stare perfected as of yet- hopefully he gets a bunch more hands-on (heads-on?) learning opportunities from Hank over the remainder of the schedule.

        Be the tank…

  • Going back to the draft and the 8-12 range

    Do you trade one of Zuc, Namestnikov, Skjei as part of a package to get into that range for a pick?

    If Bouchard, Dobson and Tkachuk are still available? Thought folks?

    100% for me

    The D prospects we got who will make it next year?

    Looks like Hajek….of the three I like Lindgren the best though so let’s hope both can make it.

    So does this make Skjei expendable?

    on the fence on this one

    Will Staal waive and get traded for a 3rd or 4th rounder?

    I hope so….but doubt it

    Finally interesting comments made by Lundqvist:

    2/28/18 | 12:10PM: Lundqvist met with the media on Tuesday in Vancouver to discuss the state of the team and said (NYR):

    “A big part of our team is gone. I woke up today and it’s almost that you can’t believe it, so many years playing together and going through so many things, it’s just a different team. It’s a new time that starts, we have to make the most of it. A lot of guys here are here for the first time and we will do whatever we can to support the new guys and try to win games.”
    “I don’t look further than this season. Whatever happens this summer, I don’t know the plans. A big part of the team and good friends are gone. As a competitor when you know things can happen this way you have to set your mind the right way and it’s been a little challenging for me the last couple of weeks but now it’s done.”

    Whatever happens in the summer is the part that is interesting

    What do you think he means….is it an easter egg to a potential waiving of his NMC?

    • So I won’t spoil this with a thumbs up, but I don’t get the negative reaction to this comment, which is much more some questions than some substantive opinions. The quote from Lundqvist is interesting and one might wonder what it means (and Leather deserves credit for bringing it to our attention).

      Whatever one thinks about Hank, the situation is crystal clear. Hank has a NMC and if he wants to stay, the Rangers won’t even ask him to waive it. And if he wants to go, they will accommodate him, both to rebuild and to treat him in the way that he has earned to be treated. A few weeks back, when Hank said he wasn’t going anywhere, he did not know what a rebuild really meant. As he learns what he is in for in NY, he necessarily must adjust to the situation mentally. Will he still want to stay as he comes to grip with the new reality? We can only speculate — and I think at this point, Hank can only speculate.

      Personally, I hope he does what makes him happiest. The Rangers can survive either way.

      • Ray

        As I stated in another post,,,,the thumbs up down has been compromised and no longer a viable tool. i think there is one person here with many fake e mails

        If per chance….almost none of these thumbs down people chime in or offer a rebuttle

        I just find it comical now

        I posted my birth month and got what 10 thumbs down?
        I very seldom use it….I prefer to debate a topic.

        alas it is what it is…it will never silence me

      • Yeah, seems some trolling is going on, haha. Neither of these comments prompts a thumbs-down from me.

      • Ray

        Oh no, you just made the club, all the Mickey Mouse yo-yos are at it again. Welcome aboard my man!!!!!!!

        • Walt – please continue to use the phrase “Mickey Mouse yo-yos”. I don’t know what it means but I love it.

          • Fan

            I’m showing my age here. In the 50’s there was a TV show called the Mickey Mouse Club. My favorite Mouseketeer was Annette Funicello, just a beautiful women, died much too young. They wore the ears kids get at Disney, sang songs, really cornie show, but cute for its time. The yo-yo thing is rather self explanatory, and the thumbs downer are just following like sheep. Real stupid, immature, but funny to watch these people make fools of themselves.

            Now let the Three Stooges led Mouseketeers go nuts and play the thumbs down game!!!!!!! This is your quick history lesson, hope you enjoyed it, as much as I did explaining it……..LOL!!!!!!!

          • I have a friend who uses the same term; if he says something is “Mickey Mouse”, he basically means not respectable or inadequate, more or less. Definitely not a compliment, haha. Not sure if that’s how Walt uses it exactly, but just to throw that out there with my understanding. Example of my understanding:

            Person A: “What did you think of the spread at the company holiday party?”
            Person B: “I thought it was pretty Mickey Mouse. The highlight was probably the cold-cuts platter…half of which was generic bologna.”

          • Also, it just occurred to me that we are talking about Mickey Mouse with a man named Walt. (Disney? Get it?!?! Okay, I’ll leave now.)

          • Egelstein

            One last thought, I don’t know if your old enough to remember, Wayne Gretzky once called the NJ Devils a “Mickey Mouse” organization! It was funny then, and today!!!!!

          • Your right on the money. Also in the same context, when someone is acting like chicken shit, they also refer to them as Mickey Mouse!!!! Yes I’m Walt Disney, tried to hide that from everyone!!!!!!!

    • 8-12 range? They’re currently 7th and 5 points out of 4th; 3-12 in their last 15 games. Considering how they’ve been gutted, I’d be amazed if they got to 66 points.

      Vancouver is on pace for 72 points and added(somewhat) at the deadline.

        • No sense doing fantasy picking with what they don’t have yet. When they package the Tampa & Boston picks for an upgrade to the middle of the 1st I’ll cross that bridge.

          • That’s my question….being a deep draft….do you think it’s worth it? Or staying put….about 10 players in the 2nd round are considered or were in the 1st round projections early on….this draft one day will compare with the 03 draft

            a huge building block opportunity is here for the Rangers

            Realistically Svechnikov could fall to 5, Tkachuk to 8

            Vancouver is going to pick Quinn Hughes
            I think we pick at 5

            My projection for draft order
            1 Montreal
            2 Buffalo
            3 Phoenix
            4 Ottawa
            5 Rangers
            6 Vancouver
            7 Oilers
            8 Detroit
            9 Blackhawks
            10 Islanders
            11 Carolina
            12 Florida
            13 Islanders
            14 Philadelphia
            15 Colorado

            I think there is a trade available from 8 down

          • You really did your homework on this draft Leather. Earlier I said that we could walk away with two studs. I should have said maybe three, if not more. Wishful thinking on my part, but that goes with the anticipated excitement of the upcoming draft for me!!!!!!

          • I really have,,,,,my youtube has been going clip after clip
            looked at projections from beginning to where there was debate over who would be #1 Dahlin or Svechnikov to current rankings

          • Depth is relative.

            For me the tiers are:


            then a tier 5-10, then one 11-22, then the next one is in the 40s.

            You’d probably have to give both late 1st picks to jump up into 8-10(Chicago, Detroit, Florida) Chicago is in a zone of death, trading down doesn’t keep the window open. Florida my be willing to talk. Detroit could use the additions to the system. Considering that the Rangers only have 67 players on the 90 man reserve, they could stand to build that depth back up as well.

    • Leather, Hank’s whole interview was interesting I thought. The interviewers were saying this rebuild may continue over the summer and how does he feel about that. He was quick to say I can only think about this game and this season. So not sure he was opening any doors there just trying to reset and regain focus on the 19 upcoming games. I thought Gorton’s comments were more telling. He said Hank told him he wanted to retire a Ranger “so that is what we are going to do.” I think they have no reason/need to force a move given that he has publicly said he wants to be part of the rebuild and, though you don’t agree, he has shown for long stretches this year that he can still play at a high level. They need a franchise player to keep fans happy while they rebuild and Henrik is that guy. And yes this thumbs down epidemic is weird.
      Ps my Dad was a Marine. He would have agreed with your leadership takes.

  • September is my birth month….now…30 thumbs down…high 5 to Richter Walt Sieveqvist Tanto…Spozo (I like him though we differ in opinion)

    • As is my birth month-maybe why we think quite a bit the same when it comes to values my friend!!!!!!!

    • I’m in the Dominican Republic this week and I can promise you I’m not wasting a second giving you a thumbs down bud! I’ll stick to drinking rum out of a coconut before noon.

      Fun fact. There is a Rick Nash Rangers jersey in the sports bar here. I laughed to myself and took a pic of it just for kicks

  • With McDonagh as a quiet leader and Hank as in your face guy, the Rangers had the worst of both worlds. In your face leadership is optimal, but it can’t come from a Steven Kampfer or a Henrik Lundqvist. That leader has to be a high quality admirable SKATER. Goalies play a different game and I suspect a lot of skaters don’t want to take crap from him. Think about it. Players get bashed around all night and we whine if someone brushes a goalie.

    • You may have a point about skaters not wanting to hear it from a goalie – if it was a harsh criticism of a skating-specific aspect. That said, as a skater, if my goalie could point out a flaw in what I am doing and advised me on how to correct it respectfully, I’d take no issue with that. Hell, good goalies know the ticks of every opposing scoring threat in the league…why would the guy who sees me in practice all the time not know mine as well?

      I think if this core of skaters (well, not THIS core…but a week ago) had a widespread issue with Hank, we’d have heard about it or at least been able to see it. It’s not as though the boys were rolling their eyes when he went up and down the bench recently. Other than the Stepan “Relax Moment”, I can’t recall noticing anyone going against Hank’s grain, frankly.

      • I am pretty sure that is not true. Mack I always felt didn’t like him and Giardi. And also JT openly shunned him this season on ice.

        I don’t know if you have ever seen hank without pads and wearing his regular swedish style clothes not his suits but he is not very intimidating in the least.

        • Not sure where you are getting this Girardi thing. He and Henrik are good friends and their families socialized together. Hank made an Instagram post about him when he left which he has not done for anyone else. The only statements to ever come out of Mac’s mouth regarding Hank were extremely positive. “Our leader, our best player” etc. Guys on NHL network like Weekes and Rupp (also Valley) who played with him are uniformly positive about him. Look, it is pretty clear that he is an eccentric guy – a lot has been written and said about that. But I have yet to read anywhere that he is actively disliked or somehow toxic in the room. That seems like a made up narrative to me.

        • I am pretty sure you can’t provide tangible examples outside of your own speculation (which as we all know by now, you value above all else, even tangible facts).

      • There’s a huge difference between the respectful pointing out of a flaw and a rabble-rousing call to arms. A good athlete may occasionally get useful pointers from his six year old kid. I’d certainly hope that a goaltender points out reasons why he can always stop someone in practice. But if a tender tries to lead in the way that Ryan Callahan did, the absence of Cally’s bruises denies him credibility.

        And, as to the fact that you haven’t noticed any criticism of Hank, the fact that the one guy who did was quickly run out of town (and expectedly I might add) suggests that players should not dare to criticize.

        • I honestly believe that on top of the lack of goals last playoffs is the whole reason they traded Stepan and to Arizona to boot.

          • Walt,only got to see him play live a hand full of Times.Main thing with Step was he couldn’t skate worth a shit.First line center or any center for that matter needs to skate.Thats his job.Third D down low ( well with AV’s system who the hell knows where hes supposed to be 🙂 )

          • Walt you among others here really feel he sucked. Was he the greatest 1C in the history of the game…I don’t think anyone would ever think that about him. But even on the worst team in the league.. he is still doing what he had always done for us. And statistically he is better then Mika. In every important stat.

        • Hank’s “absence of bruises?” The man took a puck to the throat 3 years ago and stayed in the game and played one more before they finally figured out he had a busted blood vessel. He has taken pucks off his head, collarbone, hands, wrists, hurt his knees, hips, and every other part of his body and they practically have to drag him off the ice. He gets flattened in the crease, speared in the eye, bowled over by Mac and gets back up. He took a giant hit to the head from Eakin and returned to the game and posted a shutout. He played the finals of the World Championships, and made 44 saves and 4 more in the shootout, with a knee taped to the max and filled with painkillers because of an mcl sprain. He could barely walk after. Hank is viewed uniformly as one of the fiercest competitors in the game. Cally has nothing on Hank when it comes to being a warrior.

        • I honestly feel that at the time Step was traded, the Law Offices of Sather, Gorton, and Vigneault felt that Mika and Hayes were fully ready for legit 1C and 2C roles. Couple that with Stepan’s impending NTC, the fact that they were staring down the barrel of Girardi’s NMC and subsequent buyout, the specter of Staal’s NMC also looming, the chance to get a top-ten first rounder for the first time since McIlrath plus a flawed but undeniably-talented former first-rounder for Step and Antti, and a lil’ bit of cap cheese as well…

          Point being, there were plenty of reasons other than the “Relax Moment” that also are entirely defensible logic for why they were looking to trade Derek. Personally, I was always leaning slightly more towards against trading Stepan unless the package was clear overpay territory, and in hindsight, I am honestly still not sure who won the trade yet IMO. All of that said, if the reason Stepan was traded was truly because of friction with Hank, then that whole front office needs to be relieved of their duties.

  • This may not win me a lot of fans, but I think the whole peer-leadership angle is significantly overrated. I have played plenty of team sports in my life (albeit not professionally). Never once did any of the leaders of the teams I played for improve or degrade my play with their leadership skills or lack thereof, or with their leadership style of any variety.

    They may have gotten me fired up or pissed off, sure, but my skills were my skills, and I was always trying to play my best game. I was never a particularly gifted athlete; pretty much average at most athletic skills, with some exceptions for a few specific skills that I may have been really good (or really bad, unfortunately) at. No captain was gonna be able to change that, vocal/quiet/otherwise. Captains are not coaches making all the tactical decisions…it cracks me up that some of the folks who say “Coaches don’t matter!” are the same folks that say “The captain isn’t leading the team well!”. IMHO, the coaches have roughly 1,000% more of an effect on a game than the captains.

    I just do not personally buy in to the concept that grown men who garner exceptionally nice paychecks for their work *should* need a captain/alternate captain to help them perform to the peak of their abilities. I honestly feel like it’s more about recognition to the guys who have the letters on their sweaters (which I have no issue with). And of course, there are non-play-related reasons for captains as well.

    • Have you ever won anything? My good captains would have you running through walls for them and your teammates when you could care less about the coach. Because of that, we won. When our coach knew what he was doing, we really won. When the coach listened to the captain, we won a national title(of which I had nothing to do with beyond being a warm body in the mat room) Good ones, the boys know who they are.

      My bad ones were appointed by staff and usually didn’t have a clue what their teammates were doing.

      • Won Best Costume at a Halloween party, once. Didn’t need a captain for that!

        Jokes aside, yes, I have been a part of winning teams. None of the victorious efforts were based on anything other than playing to our capabilities. A captain should not be required to ascend that peak.\

        I’m not discounting or even crapping on captains and peer-leaders entirely, to note. Situationally – especially when players are fatigued, for example – it can be useful. All I’m getting at is that if a team is lacking in talent, a great captain is not gonna move the needle much. And if the team is overflowing with talent, a shitty captain isn’t going to move the needle much. Now, in coaching, the first point still holds true – a great coach will not move the needle much for a shitty roster. But to the latter effect, a shitty coach can absolutely nullify many aspects of a talented roster, because they actually dictate the tactical arrangement.

        • And you’d be mistaken.

          A bad captain can ruin unit cohesion, while a good captain gets teams to punch above their weight routinely.

          The Flyers wasted plenty of seasons recently because their leadership group sucked. Too many bad apples kept around when a good captain would’ve run the bums off.

    • You don’t win me over with that. In my experiences in life …whether it is sport related or not…a leader of a group of men, where no women are involved, has to be intimidating, fearless, and confident to become the leader.

      We are social animals by nature but also viscious. People want to fit in. In a room of just men…trust me everyone will fit in somewhere. And it is a Captains job in hockey to take these groups that form and get them all flowing in the same direction. So a need for a Captain is very important. And the need for A’s is just as important. The assistants are the click leaders…for example guys who like to party after the game…guys who have families…and guys who sole purpose is to play hockey non stop. These are all groups of men that form in a locker room of professional athletes. You need internal leadership.

      A coach’s job is to fine tune these athletes and to know when and where to use them. But also his job in today’s game it is to prepare these guys to what is coming in their next opponent. And figure out what matchup’s work best for each player and to find weaknesses in the opponents roster and play style. He is to busy therefore to know the day to day manutention of every individual players lives. Which he then turns to his Captain to get updates on who is hung over, who is having issues at home and who is not playing anymore because of some contract dispute.

      And all of this is based on just a regular non rookie roster team.

      Rookie’s add a whole new level of chaos.

      But anyway…it is pointless to say cause I can tell by your opinion you have never had to lead men. A coach is only 1 tier of the motivation of pro athletes…Captains’ and Assistant Captains’ are another. So is salary bonuses and free agent rights and everything else. But the bottom line is the best players in this league all have one thing in common. And it is their undying need to be the absolute best on the ice every shift in every game. Granted they have to also have the natural skills and abilities to do it, but Kucerov didn’t come in and light the league up. His first season he had 18 points in 52 games, but as each season has gone by he has increased his totals and his reputation in this league as one of the best. And there are countless other examples of him in this league. He was a second round pick number 58 in 2011. And just so you can see …Mika was drafted that same year and was 6th overall. And in all honesty I know who I would want on my team any day of the week.

      • I manage people for a living in my role for an NYSE-listed retail real estate investment trust (and it will be a decade in that role come January 2019), and on a side note, in 2008, I player/coached my company softball team to the best season record we’ve ever had, Pete Rose style. But please, continue making assumptions about me. Would love to hear more.

        You know, some of your points would register better if you weren’t often so holier-than-thou about your presentation. Just sayin’, yo. We all have our moments, but c’mon, bruh.

        • Thanks for the laughs bro. I appreciate your candor with us. I will suggest/comment in a more positive way …trying reading or watching some videos on leadership. I feel it will help you tremendously in your career and in your life. I am no expert by any means at leadership. But I can identify a true leader when I see one. And just meant by what you said I could see you had never been a leader of just men. Offices with women don’t count.

          Now if you said you took your softball team to the championships as a corrections officer at a prison …that would have been somewhat respectable. Even if it was a women’s prison.

          And remember sexual harrassment is a real danger in the office and patting crystal on her bum for a good job is not acceptable. And telling April she has a nice rack is a fireable offense.

  • You lead by doing. Example:

    I played in a street hockey tournament in my senior year in high school in our gym. We had a high school hockey team that won county championships and they had a team in this tournament (I know, guess who won, lol).

    One of my friends played defense on that team and he was pretty big (I was average in size but he was bigger than me). He kept running smaller players on other teams. When it came our turn to play his team, the first opportunity I had, I ran across the gym when he had the puck, and at full speed, left my feet (with my elbow up, lol), and nailed him into the moveable bleachers.

    Needless to say, my friend did not get up right away and I got 2 minutes for boarding and a thumbs up from our psycho gym teacher who was reffing the game, lol.

    P.S. My friend did not touch a soul the rest of the tournament and my team came in 2nd place.

    You don’t have to be big in stature to stick up for yourself or others. Just do it.

  • What I am really curious about is how the D will develop and evolve

    Dahlin….no brainer
    Bouchard….Dobson….awesome but here my pick is Wahlstrom then make a trade and get one of these two

    Dahlin…(pray pray pray)
    Dobson/Bouchard,( Feasible) Samuelsson (rd 2) I am pretty sure we end up with him

    Lindgren, Hajak…rykov
    Day, Gilmor, Pionk, Smith, Crawley, Perdie, Sproul, O’Gara

    Staal, Skjei. Gilmour, DeAngelo, Pionk, Shattenkirk,

    Where do you guys think Sean Day fits into this mix
    Skjei expendable?

    Can Gorton pull some magic and trade Staal?

    Interested to hear your opinions

    • I think that it is going to be very difficult to predict rosters/line ups for next year because the Rangers are not nearly close to being done revamping their team.

      • god I hope that is not true but I know you are probably right on the money. I just want to see the kids they draft and got from these trades play and see where we stand.

        • IMO, they will use some of the assets they just got to make trades for established NHL players. I hope that Trouba is a possibility.

          • I dont …I feel that would be a mistake. It is like the Kucherov point I made …mika was drafted 6th overall that year and in no way shape or form is he as good as him. The draft really is a lottery and most of the assets we got are to young to know what we really have. Now if they move Spooner and Name and Rykov then I wouldn’t care. What they are is well documented.

      • Richter1995 (35 no more)

        What do you think they will do…I know it’s speculation but revamp how?
        What else do you think they should do?

        • They’re going for top of the line players bro. Trouba, OEL, Karlsson (I hope not), Tavares, etc all on the Rangers’ radar, and probably others.

          They will not go with all young players. No way.

          • I hope you are wrong on this one Richter

            Been down this road one too many times with utter failures

            To win it you build it….you can’t buy it

          • They’re not going with all kids. Young and skilled yes, but not all inexperienced players. And a mix of vets.

    • Looking at Sean Day, and all he’s been thru, I’m hoping that he gets an opportunity to play for us in the near future.

      The man is speed++++++, size 6’2″ 220 lbs, stick handles well, and improving at the “D” position. I am a fan of this kid because he’s been an underdog in life, but is doing whatever it takes to pull himself up by his bootstraps!!!!!!!!!

      • Walt knows and loves the kids,I’m all for em.Let them make mistakes and learn.To bad AV doesn’t think at all like it.

  • Sean Day is the head scratcher here for me….can this guy put his elite skills together?….talk about a home run or bust guy,,,,,here it is

    He will be with the pack by end of the season

    Guy has incredible skill level

      • Yeah I am pulling for him too

        I like Skjei but not enamored by him….some nights he looks really lazy and or unfocused this year….I wonder if how the year panned out had something to do with it….he is our only physical defenseman but I can easily see that physicality replaced by Lindgren…This guy was a stud in the WJC

        I remember 1 day watching thinking to myself….how in the world did Boston get so lucky with McAvoy and Lindgren

        You need Lindgren types to win a Cup and I hear Rykov is in this category too but more offense to his game

        I can also see why Hajak was a must by Gorton….Been studying him since the trade….he looks real good….fast thinker on the ice

        No homework on Rykov yet…watched a few clips and some reads but that’s it

        • Leather

          Keep up the good job of scouting for us, LOL!!!!! The more I read , hear, and discuss these trades, and the upcoming draft, the more I like it!!!!!

    • He will not be with Hartford by the end of the season, his knee got destroyed a month or two ago.

      • No really???????? Didn’t hear, or read anything about it. What was it ACL, or something real serious? Damn kid has no luck……..

        • Knee on knee shot, player who did it got 8 games. They say week to week, hasn’t had surgery, so who knows. Has not dressed since Feb. 8.

        • I just looked up to see if he was injure too….didn’t see anything in that regard…..I know he was traded and producing real well

        • Big question is does the Rooshkee come over or stay put in the KHL???

  • They get lucky and get Dahlin,
    I immediately trade Skjei to get Wahlstrom or Tkachuk if either are available in 6 to 9 range

    They get say pick 5 I draft Wahlstrom
    Now I trade Zuc (again my favorite Ranger since he got here) and get one of Bouchard or Dobson

    I am pretty confident we can get Samuelsson in rd 2….quite a few players are rapidly moving up the chart (Bokk is one name) into the first round bringing him into an early rd 2 pick. I am sure round 2 is by how the standings were at the end of the year…..we lose to Vancouver tonight our odds increase to being 4th

    31st pick….Dellandrea….you let him slip he’ll be pick number 32

  • McD: ” I am PROUD to be a part of Temper Bay Lightnings…”

    Is it a little bit too fast to say things like that?

  • As for the O
    Traverse City I would love to see a line of Howden Gettinger and Ronning then see that line for at least 1 pre season game….this is in my opinion going to be our 3rd line of the future and may I add potential for being top 5 3rd lines in the NHL

    If we get lucky with McBain in Rd 2…our 4th line center Draft Riley Sutter 3rd round for here and Vesey

    Chytil or Andersson as 2 flip flop here they who will be the center (will be linemates) with Dellandrea

    Zibby/Hayes and Kreider/Buch

    My projection for 2020

    Namestnikov,Fast and Spooner will be in the line up 2019 and potential trade chips for 2019 draft
    Zuc I think goes on draft day

          • With the right people I think he can be….hence Gettinger and Howden

            he won’t be successful say with Zibby and Buch

            his ceiling I think is 15 low end to 25 high end goals 40 to 50 points

      • Ronning can be a Fast with skills.

        I was skeptical that Ronning was going to sign with the Rangers, but blowing up the roster might get him to do it.

        • Went to T Bird game last night and watched Mr Ronning. Had my Rangers jersey on and he came over and flipped a puck up to me during warm ups. Had a goal and was always in front of the net. He will be an NHler for sure

          • Thank you for the first hand account. I get cautious about players lighting it up in high scoring leagues.

          • Is that supposed to mean the Rangers?

            Even with all the deals, they don’t have a ton of prospects. There’s 17 players that are legitimate prospects in the system.

            Even after this draft they’d only have 25 of 40 spots taken on the reserve list. They’re likely 3 years away from getting close to the ceiling.

    • I saw Sutter a bunch of times back in November. Might get drafted off his name but he was wholly unremarkable. When you’re unremarkable you would hope the stats would show you something.

      They don’t.

      You need to be scoring 30+ G to make it out of the Dub(even then that’s often not enough.) His one cousin scored less and made the show but has been a journeyman at best.

      • I don’t want him for scoring….I want him as an energy guy…some hitting…protection….some good hockey fights….not staged fights….I never liked those either… but silly

        Develop him into a PK’er

        You need character guys to win….not just skill….and yes team sand paper

        Those who point to Pittsburgh….they also had Kunitz….Hornqvist. ..Malkin is no slouch….Cole…and Cullen and as much as I hate to say this Crosby is no slouch either

        • He does absolutely none of that. Hasn’t had a fight in juniors. Responsible defensively, that’s about it.

  • “It sticks with you. That’s exactly why they’re doing this — because we didn’t win,” McDonagh said. “At the end of the day, all of that so-called success, it’s not the top of the mountain, it’s not the No. 1 prize.”

    Mac Truck’s reaction to the trade, as written by Brooks. Now to the defenders of AV, and E3, who may, or may not be around tonight, the players, and fans know that to get to the top and fall short, as AV has done twice, well enough said. Can’t wait to see the guy empty his office!!!!!!!

    • Nothing personal against the guy, because believe me, everyone here wanted him to succeed. That would have meant that we would be very happy.

      But he just did some very dumb things. To be clear, it is not all his fault, no way. But did he contribute a big chunk of bad towards the end result? You bet.

      • Tony

        Agree, Mac didn’t have a banner year at all. The purpose of this post was directed at AV’s record, that people defended to the point that they got elevated blood pressure, but the gum chewer was a regular season winner, but a PO loser!!!

        • You think possibly he could have been in the same boat as Shaturpants and playing hurt most of the year?He was off for sure,like alomsot lost a step and a half to everyone else.

        • IDK, but my guess is that the Rangers felt like McD was starting to wear down and there was no way that they were going to give him an extension.

          I said the same thing about Cally when he was here. Forget stats, I felt like he could not handle numerous NHL seasons with his lack of size. So giving a 6 year contract would have been insane.

          Think Stevie Y is regretting that one?

          • In all reality…..McDonagh is a perfect fit for the lightning

            and pairing him with Girardi under Cooper’s system they both will do well…Giaradi is already doing that without McDonagh….He has been solid for them


            I think we should’ve traded Cally for picks and prospects…. not St Louis….that trade magnified the beginning of the end of that core

            Many don’t give props that Brassard trade enabled the downward spiral either.

            To me the rebuild needed to start when we lost all those assets….for nothing….Stralman, Boyle, Cally and 2 1st rounder

            The Rangers must stay away from those big contracts and term….big contracts must be front loaded if we do sign them….pointing to Lundqvist’s contract…how much easier would it be if he was payed 10 mil down to where his current contract was 5 mil

            Staal….oye but same thing

          • Actually front-loading a contract doesn’t help and even hurts. The cap hit is the average value, not the salary that year. Moreover, if you buy a player out, the only cap reduction is the amount of money you save – hence if a player makes $3M the last few years on a $9M average contract, the savings are only $1M per year – as opposed to $3M per year.

          • You only front load the contracts that get you to age 28 or 2-3 yr deals after 28.

            I would entertain it if a UFA I really wanted was level on AAV and term.

          • hmmmmm….that’s not good
            I wonder if there is ways to write a contract up… minimize cap hit,,,,say yo agree to pay the player 8 mil
            you pay him a salary and a cap hit of 4 mil a year then word it to give him a monthly bonus of 1 mil for 4 months in a playing year

            anyway….I think the Rangers have to stay away from that….no OEL….Karlsson Tavares and never again offer any kind of NMC NTC contracts….League wide that is

            Best way is years end production and levels of salary with bonuses

            Too many signed a big contract and got fat and happy….

          • CBA largely bans bonuses beyond Signing, Reporting or Roster Bonuses.

            The only players who can get performance bonuses are players on a ELC, over 35s on 1yr deals and vets coming off of a LTIR kind of injury the prior season on a 1yr deal.

  • Hajek’s size, performance at the WJC and perceived skill level… knowing that hindsight Is twenty twenty, but would he project as a mid first rounder in this draft? Gorton seemed to prize him.

  • I’m happy with the returns so far. For the rebuild to work the bench must be cleared you can swap the players all you want That will not change how the team is run on the ice. With all the infusion of youth We need a coaching team who can get the best out of them. I’d love to see the team of Adam Oates/ Scott Steeves a skill based approach that will bring out the best in the youth for the future

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