No recap, wasn’t awake for the full game. Sorry folks.
Three questions for the mailbag this week. As always, use the widget on the right to submit questions.
Randy asks: Are there any surprise names you see being moved at the deadline?
The easy names to point out are Mats Zuccarello and Kevin Hayes. But that’s low hanging fruit. Moving both opens top-six spots for Lias Andersson, Brett Howden, and Pavel Buchnevich to fight over. Adam McQuaid is a maybe, and a player like him is almost always moved at the deadline. But that’s also low hanging fruit.
I’ll throw a name out there for you: Kevin Shattenkirk. Yea he’s been garbage, mostly because of his knee. He looks slower. But name brand value means something. The return won’t be much. The Rangers may need to retain. But I can see him being moved. That’s not a definite, I’m just thinking logically.
Also can see them moving Vlad Namestnikov.
Tim asks: What is everyone’s obsession with Fredrik Claesson?
It’s not an obsession. It’s a simple fact that he’s 26, he’s played better than arguably everyone else on the blue line, and yet he’s still a healthy scratch on a nightly basis. As Rob pointed out yesterday, the Rangers were playing their best hockey when he was paired with Shatty. It could be a coincidence. But nothing else has worked. Why not try it out again? Brendan Smith certainly isn’t getting the job done. Nor are McQuaid or Marc Staal. There’s nothing to lose.
Dave asks: How long does David Quinn have left as the Rangers coach?
Short answer: A long time.
Long answer: He certainly isn’t winning fans over with some of his roster decisions. It could be directive from above to build trade value. His defensive zone system of giving up the blue line in order to force the play to the outside isn’t working. The best coaches adjust their style to the players they have, and we have yet to see what he can do with an actual competent blue line in front of him. However those are two glaring strikes against him.
It’s been 42 games though. Quinn is known for player development, even if his in-game decision making has been called into question before he came to the Rangers. Is he the right coach? There isn’t enough information yet. We will know when we see what Andersson, Chytil, Howden, DeAngelo (who can’t seem to get in the lineup) and others turn into.