Lineup Changes

Rangers lineup notes: Same lineup, Kakko to the second powerplay unit

Per Vince Mercogliano, Kaapo Kakko is (finally) being put on the powerplay. Kakko’s ice time has been the subject of great debate, and it’s been due to his lack of special teams use. This is hopefully something that sticks. There is little point in keeping your second overall pick off the powerplay.

That second powerplay unit looks solid, and it also gets Ryan Strome off the top powerplay unit.

The rest of the lines look the same as well, meaning Colin Blackwell is still in the top six.

Jack Johnson is still out with a lower-body injury.

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  • Having Howden and Claude’s useless son on the ppv over Laf and Kakko was so bizarre I’ll never get Quinn

    • Howden is just put out there on the PP for the faceoff, as Zib and Strome have been brutal. Lafreniere looks like he could potentially be the guy to take the draws on the PP. Nothing kills the PP faster then losing the faceoff and turning the puck over to the other team.

    • So is balancing out your first PP unit, but having neither Zib or Breadman on the left circle for the one-timer. It seems everytime he makes a lineup, he goes out of his way to put a wrench into his own plans in some way.

      It’s the same thing with the goalies and the yo-yo game he’s playing. There’s zero reason that Igor isn’t playing today. They are a team starving for consistency in their game. There’s always something. DQ is not comfortable unless he’s messing with at least 1-2 players heads in some way.

      “Great game guys! Two steps forward boys. Now hold on here, let’s take one-step back. We don’t want to find a rhythm this early in the season. I want to make sure everyone is at least a little uncomfortable.”

      I’ve always liked Quinn. But this season feels like he is a college coach trying to coach an NHL team…

    • Better balanced lines while Chytil out:
      Need to have rookies with veterans
      Panarin – Zip – Kappo
      Laf – Blackwell – Buch
      Kreid – Strome – Gauthier
      Lemieux – Rooney – Howden

  • The Blue Line looks so more stable with JJ out of the lineup. The PP is moving the puck well, they just need to hit the net and have a body in front for tip ins and to screen the goaltender.

  • Love that the new kid is getting top line minutes. Let’s see what happens! Also quite happy that Smith is playing and JJ sitting, and that Tony D is back on the 1st PP unit. The club just looked far more organized with those changes, and sparked by Blackwell’s hot play.

  • Quinn doesnt like European players. He has ah ard time developing them. He likes the grit and toughness of North American players he likes. Quinn will either get Kakko traded or lose this kid mentally. Proof? Lias Anderson, Krastvov , Kakko… but hey lets keep Howden in…put PDG in top 6. I think its time to start not only put Quinn on the hot seat for this but also Gorton for allowing it! Kakkoo is our future with all our # 1 and #2 picks we have had. Makes me sick!

    • Your first statement sounds ridiculous, but, I happen to agree with you.

      Guys like Zib, Panarin, etc., are no brainers, that Quinn has to play. But unless the European player is a star, they have a tough time either getting into the line up or getting appropriate playing minutes.

      Howden getting more minutes than Kakko is laughable. But typical. And Howden making it over Lias was another example, especially when Lias outplayed Howden during that summer’s camp and preseason. It took Buch a long time to get the proper amount of minutes, when just about every metric showed that he was one of the best Rangers, per 60 minutes, while getting under 15 minutes per game.

      So, I agree with you, that I believe as well that there is an underlying bias there with Quinn. He prefers North American players. Hence the “north-south” bullsh-t concept. That works in the college game, but not in the NHL.

      • They play on larger ice surfaces, teams are less physical, and NOBODY Traps in Europe. I don’t see it as a bias against European Players but more of an acknowledgement that the North American game is different and players need to adapt. Thats why so many KHL players come here and spend time in the AHL first.

        • Its also why a lot of college players also have difficulties playing on the NHL ice surface. North South hockey is the game in the US and Canada, along with tight checking and physical play – I dont think its a BS concept – its the concept that wins cups now – players are bigger and faster and you dont want to be passing it east west too much anymore – not with teams clogging up neutral zones and playing transition games which by definition becomes North South Hockey.

          • I get what you’re saying, and I don’t think that any player should get playing time “just because.” It has to be earned.

            But the real point is disasters like JJ and Howden continue to play while players like Kakko do not get the minutes they deserve.

            Now, it turns out that Quinn admitted that he did not play Kakko like he should have in the last game, so let’s see if the coach rectifies the situation with this particular player.

            Quinn must have lost Kakko in the bench.

            As far as the “north-south” concept is concerned, Valliquette stated that substantially all the goals scored in the NHL are scored “east-west.” Meaning that the offensive players are successful in getting the goalies to move side-to-side.

            That’s what Valli said. So while I agree that players have to go to the net, the “north-south” game may not be an effective 200 foot concept.

  • but…………as soon as he is able….DQ will once again use JJ on D…PRICELESS…………………….

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