Game Wrap-ups

Rangers give Devils their first win, Jack Hughes his first point

We knew it would happen

The Rangers officially kicked off the real season last night, and showed rust that accumulates after three games in two weeks. They had a good amount of chances, but Mackenzie Blackwood made some good saves and the Rangers also missed some good chances. On the bright side, they generated sustained offense at even strength. Even it’s just one game, that’s a positive.

Jack Hughes got a point on the Devils’ third goal, the eventual game winner that went off Miles Wood’s pants. So the Rangers gave the Devils their first win and Hughes his first point. Listen, both were going to happen, it’s just rough that it had to happen against the Rangers. Such is life in a rebuild.

Rangers 1, Devils 0

Lias Andersson with the nice takeaway low to get the puck away from a pair of Devils, and then the play eventually worked itself up to Brady Skjei at the point. He put the shot on net, and with Andersson knocking Will Butcher off balance, Tony DeAngelo tucked it home for the 1-0 lead.

Devils 1, Rangers 1

This is something you want Alex Georgiev to stop. Adam Fox with the giveaway on this one.

Devils 2, Rangers 1

Marc Staal gonna Marc Staal. Kyle Palmieri goes bar down with tons of room over Georgiev’s shoulder.

Devils 3, Rangers 1

Hockey happens sometimes. The Matt Tennyson shot gets deflected by Hughes, and it looks like Georgiev is going to stop it, but then it goes off Wood’s pants and in.

Devils 3, Rangers 2

Four Devils looking at the puck, no one realizes Jesper Fast is there.

Devils 4, Rangers 2

This is just bad luck. Georgiec made a good stop on PK Subban, but then Artemi Panarin’s stick broke on the clear, giving Nikita Gusev a path to the net and go five-hole on Georgiev.

Devils 5, Rangers 2

Subban empty netter.

Shot Heatmap

So the Rangers actually controlled the offensive flow for a good portion of the game, which is why the Devils don’t have much going on with their shot locations. Interesting to see that area at the top of the right circle is the highest density of shots though. Rob brought up a good point that the Blueshirts’ defensive woes might be because the offensive depth can’t control the play or sustain offense. They did in this one, just couldn’t finish.

Expected Goals

The Rangers did a good job controlled offensive flow in this one. The Devils aren’t overly good, but the Blueshirts had more sustained pressure in this one. Because of more sustained pressure, they were able to actually limit the number of chances against. There were some high quality chances against, which we should continue to expect, but at least it wasn’t in such large volume this game.

The Rangers are back at it tomorrow night in DC against the Caps. They go from three games in two weeks to three games in four nights. The season has officially started.

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  • The jury is still out on Quinn, and I was happy with the hire, but:

    A defenseman on the 3rd line with Chytil and Krav in Hartford.
    Devs score to make it 3-1 and Michael Haley is on the ice for the next Rangers’ shift.
    Brendan Smith getting plenty of ice time when the score is 4-2.

    Red flags:

    Brady Skjei. Sorry Brady, I cannot defend you anymore. He’s awful.
    Buch: What happened to the near the net game you showed at the end of last season? It’s gone right now.
    The PP: We’ve gone back to pretty passes instead of just getting shots to the net. 0-6 doesn’t cut it, especially against a team that has been awful at the PK.
    Way too many Devs left alone in front of the Rangers’ net.

    CK finally showed his speed and drew a penalty. That’s what he can do, but once in 4 games is not nearly enough.

    Georgie was pretty good but he may want the Coleman goal back.

  • I agree. Sloppy game and bad in game decisions. Haley and Smith do not help a sputtering offense.

  • Brady was ok IMHO, this team doesn’t have game plan, play hard is not strategy, if it is for Quinn, the team is doomed under his wing

  • Buch? I’ll give it 5 to 8 more games before he’s a healthy scratch and Kakko is on the first line permanently. Kakko was better off in Finland for another year than playing on a second line with a semi-interested Kreider and a half-a$$ed center.

    Buch just doesn’t look like a first line winger right now but I hope he gets better. I’m losing confidence in him again.

  • As i said in the previous game post, buch isn’t a first line player. im not sure what the coaches are watching. is he another “placeholder” ?

  • Maybe Buch should go to the second line?

    Maybe Kreider goes to first line again with Buch, and Breadman goes to 2nd line to give life to Kakko?

    Maybe they bring up Lindgren, and send Skjei to the “A”?

    Maybe they move Andersson to the second line, can’t hurt can it?

    Maybe DQ plays his favorites at the cost of winning games?

    Why was Haley in the line up?

    Why is McKegg in the line up?

    Where is the defense?

    Where was the offense?

    Too many questions for my taste!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Look, I get that other teams are going to put out their defensive unit on our first line, making it difficult to score, but 0 for 6 on the PP doesn’t cut it.

    The second & 3rd lines need to do something more than they are doing. The team is lugging the puck but not gettiing shot on goal.

    Our defense is more than suspect at this point. I am giving this loss to layoff rust. No excuses against the Caps tonight.

  • We all know that it’s early in the season, and there will be growing pains, but last night’s game was a joke. It appears that players don’t earn their playing time, they are awarded it. Staal, Skjei, Strome, Buch are being given all the time they want, at the expense of kids Like Kakko, Andersson, or even Lemieux for that matter. What purpose did Haley serve last night?

    The team can not expect to win with one line going, and three lines going thru the motions. We can’t expect to have Zib play over 25 minutes a game all year long. Trouba can’t play over 25 minutes a game as well, you’ll run these guys to the ground. You have to play four lines, as evenly as possible, not 5-7 for the fourth line, not smart.

    I have an idea, why not try something different, like bring up Chytil, Lindgren, and Kravs, sit Haley, Strome, Staal, can the outcome be worse than what we see? This coach was brought here to teach, teach what I ask? You put out, and you sit. You choke your chicken, and you play. I want to stay positive, give me a reason please!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • I couldn’t agree with you more about:
    Quinn (not JD’s hire so his “poor” coaching decisions about line deployment, player usage could cost him after this season if the Rangers stink)

    Skjei (who should be replaced by Lundgren and inserted next to Trouba),

    Buch (he can’t take a clean pass from Panarin)

    CK (either sign him or trade him tomorrow because the contract is “weighing” on him the same way it affected Zucc last year!!!)

    McKee, Smith and Haley CAN’T be in this lineup at the same time…….this is AHL talent!

  • Was happy with Brooks’ article today about getting Kakko more time. I agree that Buch has not looked really good there for the most part. Kakko should at least be getting on the 1st PP, and probably at least some time on the 1st line to see how he looks. Putting Buch back with CK20 may help him as well. Too many guys are not very visible, and sadly it’s more the vets right now.

    Skjei was awful last night. He directly led to 2 goals. He took a penalty, they scored right away. And on Hughes first point, they dumped it in and he was very lazy in going back and they stole it to set that whole thing up. A good effort there and the puck is out of the zone cleanly, not in our net. What’s happened with him?

    I don’t like playing Smith up front much. But he does do very simple things that the rest aren’t doing… like forechecking in a straight line and forcing the play aggressively.

    The whole team needs to up the urgency in all facets. They do a lot of gliding and watching. Every team had about 3-4 more games played than us. They need to play catch up though and find a style and rhythm. They are still lacking an identity that should come with a few more games.

  • I agree with the Richter’s of the world.

    A defenseman on the 3rd line with Chytil and Krav in Hartford – McKee, Smith and Haley CAN’T be in this lineup at the same time…….this is AHL talent!

    Enough Said.

    Even though Krav showed more in camp than the SMH Trio (Smith, McKegg, Haley) put together, he still winds up with the Pack and he is told to shut up and play.

    I hope these guys weren’t watching the game last night or they risk going into a deep mental funk.

    Michael (Reggie Dunlop) Haley – I mean WTF????

  • I don’t think there is there any sense to discuss players, we are facing issue with the team only plan for the game “play hard”

  • Buch can not take pass, because everything is forced, no clean passes there, every pass doesn’t create space….. it’s coaching issue

  • I know everything seems dire, but the team has hardly played any games. I think the upcoming Caps game will be a little more instructive because it is part of a more regular schedule. I am willing to have patience while the team tries to jell a bit.

    That being said, Haley and McKegg and Smith should not be deployed in the same game. Quite frankly I see McKegg and Haley as wasted space. At least Smith has versatility and hasn’t played badly.

  • No no no, if you don’t play the way DQ wants you must be punished and/or banished to Hartford … unless of course your an older player, then you get passes on your mistakes and your uninspired play — just ask Staal, etc.

  • Filip Chityl and Vitali Kravtsov are very talented hockey players who hopefully will contribute to the Rangers for years to come. The paramount goal should be to maximize the long term contribution of these two players. In the short term, that means developing them properly without regard to the impact on the present team. if the right developmental decision is to keep them in Hartford, they should be kept there even if they were the two best players in the organization now. Whether they are better than Haley and McKegg is totally irrelevant. Base decisions on development, period. If the Rangers are awful this year because of these decisions, so what.

    From the early returns in Hartford, we have mixed results. Kravtsov clearly needs some work there. OTOH, Chityl is off to a blistering start and seems to be showing the sustained effort he never showed in NY. If what people Arte saying is true and he plays at that level for a certain length of time, he needs to be called up. But what is a certain length of time? He needs to know that this lackadaisical play was unacceptable (more time), but that his effort is appreciated (less time). I’m inclined to believe that today is too soon, but feel confident that December 1 is too late. But I’m not there and sometimes we should trust the new team to develop players correctly.

  • Could someone (who has DQ’s ear) please inform DQ that he is no longer at BU. He can’t play Trouba and Zib 27 minutes and 25 minutes a night because the season consists of 82 games!!! He is going to drive these guys into the ground!

  • First chance to see the Rangers play this year and I think I saw a really bad team with very few bright spots. Given their roles, I thought Zibanejad, DeAngelo, Andersson, McKegg looked good, but otherwise players were unimpressive or downright weak. [And I’m judging McKegg as a fourth liner]

    I don’t think Georgiev had a good game, though he made one play that led to a real good scoring chance. I do think that people here don’t properly appreciate the difference between goals one and two for the Devils. Yes, perhaps he could have stopped goal one, but it was effectively a clean breakaway. Yes, Hajek was not too far away from the goal scorer but he made no effort to impede the goal scorer in any way. The worst defensive play of the game – at least Trouba’s power play gaffe was a mistake, not lack of effort. In contrast, on goal two, Staal restricted the shooter’s options, forcing him to the outside. Yes, Staal could have done a better job and the shooter got off a miracle shot that went in, but it was mostly fundamental defense. I won’t say Staal had a great game, but he may still (sadly) be the best left defenseman in the organization. If you restrict options in a way the goalie understands, the actual shot looks just as deadly, but is much easier to stop.

    The fourth Devil goal looked all too familiar to ones posted here from previous games. The front of the net is exposed as most of the team is confidently skating up ice.

    Seeing the Ranger PP for the first time, it seemed hard to believe that they could ever score.

  • I won’t dispute McKegg’s performance Ray, I might have missed some things.

    I agree, it seemed that only a few players were playing well and agree with the ones you mentioned.

    It may be that the team just needs a few more games. It may be that it needs Chytil at center on the 2nd line by the middle of next month, and maybe LIas on the 3rd line, or giving the 4th more ice time.

    I am puzzled by Brady Skjei’s play. I know he is better than this. But he sure is not playing like it.

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