Lineup Changes

Practice lines hint at Rangers opening night lineup

Yesterday’s practice lines may have hinted at the NY Rangers opening night lineup on Thursday.

These are likely the players who will not be in the lineup on opening night. Notably absent is K’Andre Miller, who has had an exceptional camp. It looks like we are getting these lines on opening night:

Chris Kreider-Mika Zibanejad-Pavel Buchnevich
Artemi Panarin-Ryan Strome-Kaapo Kakko
Alexis Lafreniere-Filip Chytil-Julien Gauthier
Brendan Lemieux-Brett Howden-Phil Di Giuseppe

K’Andre Miller-Jacob Trouba
Ryan Lindgren-Adam Fox
Jack Johnson-Tony DeAngelo

Alex Georgiev
Igor Shesterkin

The big “surprise” is Miller making the club outright. That’s big for the Rangers, who needed a lot to go right for them to be a contender this year. This is one step, and it’s a big first step. Left defense doesn’t look so bad anymore. Or at least not as bad as it could have been.

For a Rangers opening lineup, this looks as good as it could have realistically been.

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  • Most teams these days play their fourth line around ten to twelve minutes a night these days but early in his career Quinn hasn’t done that and do we know if that fourth line can do it without being hemmed in their own zone? The third pair of Tony and Johnson defensively is gonna be a disaster. Hopefully we don’t see Howden on the pp this year he’s just not an offensive player.

  • If the Miller-Trouba pairing sticks, that’s already a long way toward a successful season for those of us here who don’t have playoff aspirations.

  • I don’t understand DG playing over Rooney, but whatever. And to be honest, I would rather Smith play over JJ.

    But other than those, I like the line up. LOVE that Miller is not only playing but playing with Trouba.

    • Hey Tony- I mentioned via text last Summer how Gorton and JD’s goal was to get Miller in the starting lineup. Next Season- look for Roberston and Schneider to be a pairing, Smith, Tony D, Johnson all gone. We have to see what will happen with Niles Lundqvist and where he fits in the big picture.

      All the rumors the Rangers are linked too , the one that is not mentioned is Gorton was speaking to MTL……trading deadline, discussions might be re-visited. Philip Danault as the 2C is the get my friend

  • Left d is now a rookie, a sophomore, and a possession hole. Dunno if that really engenders confidence, though definitely excited to see Miller on Thursday.

    I’m personally holding out for Smith over Johnson, but not optimistic. BTW, where is Smith? He’s not on either roster.

    • One can only hope that JJ either is not as bad as we fear (but he probably is) or that he falls out of the lineup quickly. No idea why they wouldn’t play Smith over JJ, unless they are parting ways with him.

    • I’m guessing he is playing because JM wants him to play, and was able to convince Quinn of the same. However, I bet dollars to donuts he will be on a short leash. You know, he is a Ranger now, and defense coach has confidence in him. How about we give the guy a break and see what he can do with this team. At least for just awhile. I’m sure he wants to do well here, and of course we would all be happy if he does.

      • Let’s just say I didn’t expect it, at least based on the various pairings I saw over the course of the last almost 10 days.

  • Amazingly, Reunanen is 4th LD(3rd RD) in Hartford. Not his fault that Bitetto only needs 3 games to qualify for expansion and Schneider signed an AHL deal.

    Evaluating D is tough, but it ain’t that tough unless you’ve never seen them play. Reunanen has always been a scrub.

    I called him a poor man’s John Gilmour and wouldn’t you know who won the pony?!

  • There’s still some doubt about Mika playing on Thursday, at least from his presser. All he said was that it depends on how he feels.

  • Can’ t Wait ! Huge anticipation ever since LaFranaire picked #1. If Miller works out, big hole filled for a long time. Almost everyone returning. Kakko big improvement, will miss Fast’s defensive skills. May not be such a pretty start ? But like last year steady improvement as they play more games together .

  • Don’t know where the goalie workload post went, but finally got to look at the schedule and from an exercise science basis(2 nights off between starts) and Shestyorkin should get 35 of 56 starts, so that’s 62.5% this season.

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