Lineup Changes

Updated practice line: Vitali Kravtsov to fourth line

David Quinn has shaken up the lines, putting Vitali Kravtsov on the fourth line.

This naturally led to chaos on social media, which was rather humorous to me. And predictable. Because I expected the Rangers to be bad, very little of this actually phases me at this point. It again is something to watch, given the Rangers should be prioritizing development over results. But if they are trying to compete, those lines get blurred.

Quinn changes lines regularly in-game, so these lines will likely last maybe a period or two.

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    • Do you fans realize with all the young players on ELCs with bonuses, we might be playing them less so they don’t reach them! Do you realize if they make those bonuses we will have 3-4 million added on to the cap next year. That mean another year with over 7 mil in dead money, IS THAT WHAT YOU WANT?

        • You do know that the many bonuses they have are for all kinds of things and not just playing time right. But I keep forgetting your generation has all the answers and you know everything. Meanwhile most of you have never played the sports you follow and people like me who have been following sports for almost 60 years we know nothing because we are too old!

          • Kravtsov will be playing half a season. If he hits those bonus numbers, he’d be getting the Calder.

          • Well that’s a rather ignorant statement considering I’m over 60 years old. The rest of it is ignorant as well, but no need to belabor your misconceptions.

  • These stinkin kids will be watching from the pressbox soon enough.
    I would rather see LaFren and Kakko take some turns on the top 2 lines than be relegated to the 7 mpg 3rd and 4th lines.

    DQ – Blackwell should be on the 4th line – Free Kakko! Free Kakko!

  • None of this makes any sense. I apologize to those here whose time I wasted with my pro-DQ posts. I really wanted to believe in him as the right guy at the right time.

  • I heard he will have Howden centering Bread and Blackwell on L1. Gotta get Howden more time along with Blackwell. Gauthier is Hartford bound.

    • I doubt Gauthier is headed to Hartford. He is subject to waivers and I doubt the Rangers will risk it.

  • DQ thinks Laf, Chytil are getting way too much time and will cost the Rangers a shot at catching Boston. So make room for those difference makers: Howden, PDG, Rooney and Blackwell. Keep Barron in Hartford; Have Gaut watch because thats how he can learn. Kravs…well….get used to it kid. If DQ is a talent whisperer I should run the CIA and I know darn well I cant do that.

  • They are going to have to shed some wingers at the deadline to make room for all the young guns to get more ice. Might just be trying to up value for guys like Blackwell who can easily have a 3pt night playing on the breadman’s line. I hate seeing them all sit game after game too but that’s probably what’s happening. Coaches also have to win or they are gone so they don’t care who sits if it’ll help them win.a game. That could also be in play here. Quinn won’t still be around when Lafreniere and Kakko are getting top 6 mins on PP etc. He’s already coaching for his next job somewhere else

    • If that is true then I completely hold JD/Gordo responsible for misalignment. You cant “write the letter” …hire a coach who is supposedly a talent developer and then accept he is coaching for another job elsewhere–which implies he is in trouble because the team is not playoff bound? That is dumb. This year…and especially now should only be about playing the kids. Period. Play them so we see what they have in the form of grit, tenacity, skill and the ability to play even when losing. Even in losing you can learn about attitude and energy. Everyone says, “I love to win”. Show us the “hate to lose” guys. Those are the one’s you build championships with.

  • I’ve been fairly bullish on DQ. I am reversing my position. Enough is enough. Move the slugs, let the kids develop, get them some protection and build this team NOW!!!!

  • I like this move a lot. The fourth line plays hockey – just like the other three. Kravtsov will get some experience playing with two guys who are not kids AND, playing on the fourth line, will be under no pressure to score. It shows real growth for Quinn, who idiotically said Krav has to play top nine a week ago.

    [not thrilled by the Kakko demotion though]

  • maybe, just maybe they are playing all of these scrubs to increase their value…

    if Blackwell scores another goal or two before the deadline, maybe we can get a 2nd for him instead a 3rd or a 3rd instead of a 4th.

    PDG has value as a real hockey player but wont get you more than a 5th or 6th

    i doubt they move Rooney.

    Howden, not sure what u get for him…maybe another struggling prospect

    it would not surprise me if the Rangers move Gauthier…because, lets face it…that would be a very typical Ranger move.

    Mason Marchment, discarded by the Leafs has just signed a 1 year extension with Panthers…kid is 6’4 220, an in your face type player…good teams find roles for players like that…Rangers, no use…or trade those guys away for more east – west guys…we never win anything and people are still trying to figure out why.

    • What’s your ideal lineup then?? I like Gauthier too but where does he fit with Buch, Kakko, and Kravstov on the right?? One of them has to go by my estimation

  • To be fare, the line practice does not mean that these will be the same lines tomorrow

    But here is the line Gorton had when he hired DQ

    “In a coaching career that has spanned over two decades at the collegiate, pro and international level, David has helped his teams achieve success while simultaneously teaching the game and helping his players develop on and off the ice,” Rangers general manager Jeff Gorton said. “He is the ideal choice to bring our loyal and passionate fans the winning hockey they deserve.”

    Which one of these promises have come to live?

  • Ok so this news doesn’t surprise me. Tells me that the Rangers are gunning for a playoff spot and will continue to rely on the top 2 lines. At this point I figure I can complain about playing time and growth etc. doesn’t matter DQ is going to do what he is going to do and the FO is saying nothing which means their on board as well. If Rangers go on a tear great if not and Blackwell plays well than maybe makes him more valuable to another team. If the team was legitimately trying to trade or have a vision of trading Goat or Kratsov I believe they would be show casing one of them in the top 6. So we get to see more musical chair line combos. We all saw what happens when you ride 2 lines come playoff time – sweep away..but if DQ and the FO feel like that is a step forward than this rebuild is going to get a lot more frustrating. To tell the truth I wouldn’t mind seeing what a 4th line of Goat – playing his off wing Baron Kratsov could do.

  • It’s easier for DG to lose the entire line vs one player at a time….a poor example of multi tasking on his part.

  • Before we all commit hari-Kari, let’s see if he starts the next game with those lines. I tend to doubt it because he did something similar 2 weeks ago in practice, but didn’t follow through game time.

  • It’s almost like Quinn is trolling us at this point, he couldn’t possibly be this inept…could he?

  • Just an out of the box thought…. showcase the extra baggage for the next couple of weeks in order to get the most at the trade deadline allowing the kids to fill the gaps after the fact… just a thought. Not happy to see the kids not getting the minutes needed to develop… I was a DQ fan… its starting to fade. Question is, who is the right type of coach to take this team to the next level?

  • I’ll get crucified for this but trying to see the flip side of the coin….If you truly believe in a lineup by meritocracy then at face value Blackwell on the second line at the expense of Kakko isn’t that crazy. Kakko isn’t playing bad by any measure but the productions not there yet. I have no doubt one day it will come, and there’s more to hockey then simple raw points, but playing with Panarin and Strome should see you getting more than 3 pts in your last dozen games no? At some point I think its fair to put some onus on the player for not taking matters out of the coaches hands and seizing the opportunity handed to you. Kakko belongs there, but has he truly seized that role? Has he truly knocked down the doors and forced the coaching staff into a position where you HAVE to keep him there? I’d argue no, as much as I’d like the opposite to be true. Blackwell on the other hand is the example of the guy who has forced the coaches hand to keep them in the lineup. This is true whether we like it or not, and I would expect the guys in the locker see this and respect that a guy like Blackwell is being rewarded.

    Now the easier side….This doesnt mean that Kakko bumped to the 3rd and, consequently Kravstov to the 4th, isn’t downright infuriating. This at face value is a bargain bin player taking top 6 and top9 time away from 2 recent 1st rounders that the team needs to carry along to meet their potential. This is somewhat a consequence of signing Panarin, resigning Kreider, and Buch establishing himself as an indispensable top line player, but, these kids do need a role commiserate with their abilities (projected or current).

    So in summation, I’d argue as disappointing as Quinns lineup choice for tuesday is, he does at least have SOME justification for it, even if we dont like it. Hit the thumbs down as much as you like, I just think Quinn is right and wrong here at the same time.

  • They need to trade or sit Howden. He’s not contributing much so maybe going elsewhere would give him a better opportunity . How long can the Rangers keep the dead wood on the team that do not contribute much. Tanner Glass wasn’t a scorer either but he was a very tough customer and a disrupted the opposition. Howden does neither.

    • Lol the revisionist Tanner Glass history. Glass was a downright liability on the ice as he was almost always behind the play, was too slow to forecheck, and was a possession black hole on a team that played a possession system.

  • Bait and switch by management, must be pressure from MSG brass to squeeze into the playoffs. Otherwise this is lunacy.

  • Kreider – Zib – Buch – Kreider is sleeping again…Buch looks to be taking a break as well
    Panarin – Strome – Blackwell, Blackwell, nice story…horrible idea
    Laf – Chytil – Kakko, like the line but in reality, they all should be with a veteran for guidance and their leash is about a long as a tootsie roll.
    PDG – Rooney – Kravtsov – replace PDG with Gaut and this line might actually be decent.

    But again, it all comes down to balance…who in this lineup is going to dump the puck and crush the dmen going back to retrieve it?

    who is going to defend Laffy when he gets crushed with an open ice hit?

    who is going to win a crucial face off?

    it’s cute to have a bunch of skill…but skill and especially young skill will not win you much.

    Av’s, have Kadri…who lambasted Lindgren last year for a big hit. Graves, who needs, 6’4 225 mean dman. Bellamare, grinder with an edge, calvert, super pest, Landeskog who can and will fight almost anyone. Mackinnon is a fierce competitor…Av’s great team right, just added Liam O’Brien, now, why would a team like the AV’s who have all the talent in the world want to add a semi goon in O’Brien for? oh yes, one more move they made…they brought up Keaton Middleton, who only happens to be 6’6 240, now, why in the world would the Av’s do such a thing.

    Good teams recognize the need for muscle…you don’t trade it away for 4th round picks because you can’t find them time.

    We have 20 vanilla players and one grinder and we trade the grinder away because we have too many forwards.

    • Hi jjb, Spot on comments Av’s my favorite to win the Cup, Big , Strong, Fast & NASTY!! We have 1 player in the entire organization who fits the bill, Mason Geersteen, who we actually got from the Av’s. This team while the young talent is definitely there, is far too SOFT to ever go far in the playoffs, when they make it. Too many similar finesse players , no grinders. The coach has also turned into a pacifist. He needs to go.

  • “Getting Blackwell up with Strome and Bread gives that line a little bit of a different look,” the coach said. “He’s had success with them in the past, he’s got a little bit more of a Jesper Fast feel to his game that Kaapo has.”

    Love Jesper and hated him leave. But why would you let a popular player go for $1.5 mil and then spend the entire season to replace him? Are GM and coach work together? Just amazing to hear that

  • I think this is more of a showcase for Blackwell than moving the kids down. The deadline is less than a week away.

    Kakko has been just fine up there with Strome and Bread. If this move for a game or two opens up a spot to move everyone up in a week on a more regular basis, then I’ll take that.

    As for Kravstov, I guess I’m disappointed in Quinn, but not surprised. If he is committing to moving Blackwell up, then Krav is the one who has to move to the 4th line.

    Hopefully it all clears up at least a little in about a week. This team has a ton of forwards and barely any centers, so something has to give.

  • Krav will be just fine. Playing against weaker opponents on the 4th line I wouldn’t be surprised if he pots a goal the next game. Speaking of next games, the back to backs against the Fishsticks and Penguins are key if the Rangers have any hope of making the playoffs.

    As bad as the Rangers looked against Buffalo, that same Buffalo team pistol whipped the Flyers. The same Flyers just beat the Bruins. The Bruins look to me like a team in decline…Just saying.

  • I can’t tell you how much i hate watching the rangers blow late lead’s again and again because of all these college hockey player’s to young and inexperienced to keep a lead but then i say to myself that hey these player’s have some growing up to do especially after the rumbling from some of them about paying time so i suggest that when we go to overtime as we been doing let just the young kid’s handle all of it even the shootouts that shows that we have faith in them plus the invaluable experience for them to show that they can win games

  • LOL. As if anyone on this Board (including me) has the info and hockey chops of Quinn, Martin, Oliver, Drury, Gorton, JD to rush to judgement.

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