Chris Kreider potentially out tonight?

Per Vince Mercogliano, Chris Kreider was not a part of line rushes today, meaning he could be out tonight against the Islanders.

The timing couldn’t be worse for Chris Kreider to be out. The Rangers need a regulation win tonight to keep their slim playoff hopes alive. The good news is that all of the key kids will be in the top-nine, even if it does mean more top-six time for a struggling Colin Blackwell.

Julien Gauthier remains a healthy scratch, as David Quinn seems pretty set on a defensive fourth line. I’m not beating that horse to death yet. That will be covered soon enough here.

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  • Seeing as how these line rushes often times turn out to be different from the lines we see in game, perhaps Kreider was just “excused” from today’s practice and is taking a maintenance day — at least I hope.

    Don’t get me started on Blackwell … or Gauthier.

    • It’s always listed as line 2.but they start almost every game. Yes I’m aware that means squadouche in hockey and that sometimes the 4th line will start depending on matchuos.

      However when the game is on thr line how often is panarin not double shifted? How often is he not on the ice?

  • There’s a big difference between a “defensive” 4th line and having a 4th line that is defensively responsible. Gauthier, albeit has big offensive upside, has proved to be a defensive liability at times and that is not something to be worked on when you are playing playoff like games. Only way gauthier in the lineup makes sense is on the third line and who are you removing? Absolutely no one. PDG is more experienced and way more defensively responsible which we are going to need tonight against an islanders team that makes you pay for any mistake. Stop the Quinn hate, this team is way beyond the curve.

    • This is absolutely ridiculous.
      Laf – Mika – Buch
      Panarin – Strome – Blackwell
      Kravtsov – Chytil – Kakko
      PDG – Rooney – Howden
      Move Blackwell to the 4th line, replace him with either Kravtsov or Kakko, and put Gautier on the 3rd line.

  • There is one consideration when it comes to choosing who to sit. Seattle almost certainly will select a forward from the Rangers and who the Rangers choose to play may influence their decision. No one here seems to consider this.

    Honestly, I don’t know how Seattle will think. My gut feeling is the unwillingness of the Rangers to play Gauthier might discourage Seattle from choosing him. What is the effect of playing Howden? Maybe this will make him a more likely choice. Of course, I suspect most here think we are just showing Seattle how bad he is.

    My own suspicion is that it likely won’t matter. The Rangers will protect Blackwell and Seattle will draft Rooney when they should be taking the better of Ronning or Gettinger.

    But it does seem that at this point, with only six games to go, the draft seems more important than getting Gauthier playing time.

    • Gauthier is the smart choice, at least he should be. Seattle has to take a few chances here and there looking for someone who could breakout.

      Of course I don’t think the Rangers protect Blackwell, they signed him and Rooney to 2 year deals for a reason.

      • Not saying you are wrong, but it would be ridiculous to not protect Blackwell simply because you were planning to expose him a year ago. New information should lead to the possibility of changing plans. [that does not mean the new info is sufficient to change plans, only that we should allow for the possibility]

        Of course, protecting Blackwell would require signing someone to expose (PDG, Goat, or Howden).

        • Blackwell had 1 really good month on a line with Panarin and Strome, since then he’s been virtually non-existent. He’s 5 years older and a half a point per game player, what you see is what you get … and it isn’t worth losing a kid with Gauthier’s potential — which if he actually played could be realized (sooner rather than later), even if it’s just to trade him.

          • Actually this was not my point at all. Consider the following hypothetical, which does not seem out of line with Ranger management thinking: The Rangers want to keep the two young guys Howden and Gauthier and lose either Blackwell or Rooney. How do they achieve this? here is a possible plan. Protect Howden, play Blackwell on the second line to inflate his value, treat Gauthier like you are afraid to play him.

            The point of my original comment was that the draft can affect usage decisions.


            Let’s be clear who exactly Gauthier is. His ceiling appears to be a decent third line forward and his floor seems to be a decent injury replacement. Such a player is not really in your long term plans, so age isn’t much of a consideration when comparing him to a Blackwell or a Rooney – either to keep or to trade. Is he more or less valuable than a true fourth line player?

            I think the notion that you automatically keep a guy with third line potential over a fourth liner is dumb. I think the decision is complicated. How likely is he to reach that potential? What are your needs?

          • Blackwell has put up 22 pts in 41 games. Actually 1/2 pt per game production gets you 41 points in a full season. That’s actually pretty decent for a second string player not to mention that so far he has more points than Chytil, Lafrenier and Kakko. Blackwell may not be the answer moving forward but in a playoff race you have to go with those that have produced. As for Gauthier, he is now the forgotten man. A big guy like him would have helped in game with the Islanders tonight.

          • He plays with Panarin. WTF is wrong with some of you?

            Oh … and Chytil was injured, or did you conveniently forget about that too?

    • Ron Francis drafted Gauthier.

      The Rangers signed Blackwell & Rooney to expose them, that Blackwell outperformed his contract is a bonus, but why he was signed hasn’t changed in the least.

      No need to galaxy brain this.

      • “The Rangers signed Blackwell & Rooney to expose them”

        I am sorry, but I hope this is beyond ridiculous. The Rangers needed depth at forward and signed two useful players, players who have dressed for nearly every game and – at least in the case of Rooney – were expected to dress in nearly every game. It was not just about the draft.

        Yes, the reason they were eager to give two year contracts was the draft.

        • Ray, no player can be drafted by Seattle unless they are under contract for at least the 2021-22 season. Blackwell and Rooney got 2-year deals so that the Rangers could get this year’s service out of both players—and then leave them unprotected in the draft. The whole point of the 2nd year of their deals is to make them eligible for selection in the upcoming expansion draft.

          It’s amazing how completely wrong you are on issues that you are so vehement about.

          • Let us be clear on who Seattle can select. It is not that hard. Seattle can select anyone on the Ranger 50 man roster except first and second year players and players the Rangers protect. Period, no exceptions.

            If they want, Seattle can select Jack Johnson or Phil diGuiseppe. It seems like a rather poor choice as these guys will be UFAs and so Seattle would just get a player they would quickly lose, but they can actually draft these guys.

            More importantly, Seattle can choose (unless they are protected) Chityl, Buchnevich, Gauthier, or Howden or any other RFA. Otherwise the Rangers could leave Chityl, Buch, Lindgren off the protected list and give Seattle almost no choice at all.

            Assuming no trades, the forwards the Rangers will expose will be all but one of the forwards on the list:
            Rooney, Blackwell, Gauthier, Howden, Ronning, Gettinger, Fontaine, Greco, Brodzinski, diGuiseppe. (they can protect exactly one).


            There is a rule – a rule designed to force the Rangers to give Seattle more than just total garbage – that the exposed list include two players signed for next year who have played a sufficient number of games. But those two players are not the entire exposed list. The Rangers can’t protect Gauthier simply by not signing him. He is an RFA and Seattle can draft him and he will be forced to sign with them (or leave the NHL).

            As things stand, the two designated players will be Rooney and Blackwell. However, Gauthier, Howden, and diGuiseppe have all played enough games and the Rangers could sign any one of the trio, which would allow them to protect Rooney or Blackwell if they so chose. And signing Gauthier or Howden, neither of whom has any leverage, would be easy if the Rangers were motivated to do so. Of course, if the Rangers are happy to expose Blackwell and Rooney, they will postpone those signings until later.

  • I am only interested in seeing the Goat play in order to see what he can and cannot do for a few games. He has only played sporadically. Maybe the coaches have seen enough and are not interested. Obviously he is not too high on the depth chart. In that case I guess I would have preferred him to get some time in Hartford.

    • It’s just a fear that if they don’t play the “vet” in this case, they’ll be second-guessed —- because you know, Goat had a game where he took 2 (TWO!) ill-advised penalties, so he can’t be trusted. DQ can’t do that with the other prospects because they’re actually playing well. I mean just look at the difficulty DQ has putting Kravs up on the 2nd or 3rd line — he knows he’s playing too well to sit, but he’s still going to go with the “vet” on the 2nd line because he’s a vet and he can be better trusted. Basically Goat is just last on the list of prospects to play.

      • Either DQ doesn’t like Gauthier, or just too many rookies or 2nd year players to add another one in while chasing playoffs. If we lose 1 to the Islanders, then those last games will be interesting on what DQ really thinks of Gauthier. I think he gets exposed or traded which is too bad really

  • Yes he doesn’t hit anybody and hurts the team with his passing. Extremely fast but not all around player. Get something for him to protect players

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