The Islanders were better, but the future is bright for the Rangers

The Rangers are going to be good. Let’s not have the fanbase overreact over two disheartening losses to the Islanders. But before I go into a couple of points I wanted to make let’s be clear: The Islanders are the most organised, well coached and well-built team in the entire league. Every player plays their role to perfection, Management brings in players to fit the system (they don’t go and buy a shiny new toy just because its shiny), and the Islanders are well ahead of the Rangers in their roster life cycle. But the Rangers have a bright future. With all that said here’s a few points I wanted to discuss.

Thank you Islanders

The Islanders did the Rangers a huge favour this week. If Jeff Gorton or John Davidson were still in any doubt at all at what this team needed before these two games, they shouldn’t be now. The Rangers decision-makers should now have a VERY clear picture at what this team needs to take a step forward. It’s never been more blatant.

The Rangers remain too finesse-orientated and they are too maverick. More often than not, the Rangers are too easy to defend. Aside from one or two players (i.e. Barzal) show me a player on the Isles that ventures too far from his personal brief.  The biggest compliment I can give the Isles is that every single bounce always seems to go their way. That’s not an accident. They create most of their luck. Although the future is bright for the Rangers, they need something to complement the skill.

Expect the Rangers to change their identity somewhat this offseason. Some of the decisions, at least to begin with, will not be popular among the fanbase. Which brings me to my unpopular suggestion.

Filip Chytil

I absolutely love Filip Chytil as a prospect and as a Ranger, but I think he’s a player the Rangers can (maybe even should) use to change the spine/DNA of their team. Chytil symbolizes both the tantalising talent and the frustrating aspects of the Rangers all in one player. He almost refuses to get the puck deep and hangs on to the puck too long. Sometimes he looks All-Star calibre and I believe he’ll become a legitimate 2nd line center – in time. He has size, skill, skating, he has it all. So why move him?

Chytil’s appeal and potential to other teams will help the Rangers make a significant upgrade at center. There will be a team that can give him the 17-18 minutes at 2C that he needs to take the next step. You can argue he’s the right player in the wrong situation for the Rangers right now. If the Rangers can package Chytil, a solid prospect (outside of the untouchables) and a pick, to get the right type of guy at center, then they should pull the trigger. Sadly you really have to give, to get.

David Quinn

I like David Quinn, and a few minor frustrations aside, I think he’s delivered what was expected from him. The Rangers, without question, have progressed under Quinn. For me however, the biggest question about Quinn moving forward is not whether he can lead this group of players, but whether he can he adapt his own approach and style to take that next step. Look at the other bench boss this weekend…

Barry Trotz is not a direct comparable, their careers much like their respective teams, are at different stages. However, you can’t help but notice how every single player on the Islanders, fills their role. Rarely does an Islander step out of the game-plan. I always get the impression that if an Islander went too solo too often, or didn’t crash the net, or didn’t finish his check, he’d be riding pine.

Use Chytil as the Ranger example. Countless times he refuses to get the puck past the blueline. Then look at the Rangers as a whole. The Rangers could not (or would not) adapt to the Islanders style. I assume we all know the definition of madness….

Quinn needs to – in concert with any roster changes made over the summer – be willing to throw out one or two lines who can play that different style. No one is asking (or wanting) Quinn to turn Panarin or Fox into Clutterbuck and co. but Quinn needs to be a lot more fluid in his approach. It’s not just on the players at his disposal, its also on the coach.

Knee Jerk, I think not

This post isn’t a knee jerk response to the two ghastly games against Ken Dryden Semyon Varlamov and the Islanders this past week. I’ve watched the Islanders with fascination all season because of how they’ve built the roster, from the coach all the way down, to how they play their system so well. I’m in love with Chytil as a player too but am a firm believer in asset management and I think he’s the roster player who can best help bring back what this club needs without subtracting too much to do so.

But make no mistake, Rangers’ fans still have a TON to be thrilled about, and the future is bright. There is a boatload of talent in place, the spine of this team is set for the foreseeable future (Panarin, Fox, Shesterkin et al.) and there’s more on the way – but there are unpopular decisions coming. The Rangers are now at the stage of the rebuild where tweaks are needed. That doesn’t need to mean the future isn’t bright.

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  • I agree with the premise but a gifted young cost controlled center is the last piece I would look to move. They surplus young prime talent on the wing and defense. Those are the positions they need to deal from.

    Also while they could definitely stand to add some snarl to their lineup I don’t think it’s fair to make that assessment following a game that both Trouba and Lindgren did not play.

    Also don’t discount Lafrieniere. Check out some videos of him in juniors. The kid has an intensity that we have barely scratched the surface of. His competitiveness is only going to come out more. He will be the definition of a player that’s hard to play against.

    This team isn’t too far off.

  • Now that Howden is out everybody has found their new whipping boy — Chytil. Yes Chytil, the guy who wasn’t on the ice for any goals against … or for …. but even. I could have lived with EVEN, from all the players.

    I’ll tell you who is softer up the middle than Chytil — Strome and Mika … but no, let’s heap all our frustrations on the 21 year old as opposed to the two vets that clearly should know better.

    • Tanto – TY. Couldn’t agree more with you! Z and Stromer immensely talented but really soft. Chytl is a cost controlled asset and can be coached up- and finally yes the 2 vets should know better – well said.

    • Hits per 60: Zib 4.09, Chityl 1.55, Strome 1.31.

      JFTR, the Rangers had seven forwards with under 3.5 hits per 60. Seven is a bit high, but not extremely so (our rivals typically have 5 or 6) and some good teams are higher (Toronto, Colorado).

      The seven are Panarin, Buch, Strome and the four kids. The kids may hit more as they mature. If they don’t however, the Rangers will likely be low-hitting if they choose to keep all four.

      IMO, a smart general manager acknowledges keeping all four may be a mistake. He dangles all of them in trade, listens to offers, and then trades exactly the kid he planned to trade all along (never tipping his hand in advance).

      • Chytil is 21, he hasn’t finished developing … focus on the vets because their upside has been established.

        • To paraphrase you, it is important to limit our options.

          The fewer things you are willing to consider, the less you can do. The thing is that JG knows so much more than we do and he should act on that knowledge. Here is a great case in point. Someone observed that in a comment here that Lafreniere, as a junior, was incredibly driven. My own observation was that he often seemed to be uninvolved. Those are two vastly different pictures. Well, who is the real Laf and where will he end up? The Rangers have a lot of information that we simply don’t have (and that other teams do not have). It makes sense to use that information if it helps.

          I’ll discuss trading Lafreniere, but the same considerations apply to all of the kids. I don’t want Eichel but if we build an Eichel for Lafreniere trade, i think the question is how much does Buffalo have to add to get the Rangers to go for the deal. Now he wouldn’t net McDavid even up I don’t think but this kid has enormous trade value. If you look at him and project a top notch second line forward (and i mean really second line, not a first liner consigned to the second because Panarin is on the first), you should trade him now becaus the rest of the league is going to wise up. OTOH, if you believe he does merit consideration with guys like Kane, Stamkos, McKinnon, then you hold onto him unless somebody totally blows you away with an offer.

          Now Kakko, Kravtsov, Chityl don’t have the trade value of Laf, but they do have considerable trade value as well. My instincts tell me that none of them is worth as much in trade as they are to the Rangers but I really don’t know. Kakko was a #2 overall who has put up two statistically poor years, but is still very young. I have no idea how much his trade value is discounted. It might be very little – he is a kid and looks good.

          However, no one would trade any of the quartet for five Gauthiers, so just the fact that you like one of them does not mean you should keep them. The Rangers have about 70 players signed or on the reserve list. Most would not net a third round draft choice and even more would not net a 2nd rounder. We have to be willing to trade more than garbage.

    • He is not a whipping boy. He is a third year player who has shown very little growth and if he is a piece needed to move in order to help get Eichel or anyone else here then I would drive him to the airport myself

      • Personally I’m on the side of the fence that wants Eichel. But it makes not sense to include Chytil in that trade. Gaining Eichel means Zib is gone. They don’t have the center depth to lose both Zib and Chytil.

  • You suggest we now have a pretty good idea of what needs to be done, but in some ways it’s just the opposite. You propose trading Chytil, and I agree that last night was another maddening example of his overhandling the puck…but might not his play have been different if the option on his left wing was Panarin instead of Blackwell? Did the Carolina series last year and the Islander games this year maybe expose that Strome-Panarin is not the right combo for playoff hockey, that maybe Panarin needs a center who is better at transporting the puck and can open space for him? Is Chytil that guy? It would be great to look at how the Chytil-Panarin combo worked this season…except Quinn didn’t see fit to use any of the first 52 games to find out. That’s a major fail.

  • The logical decision is get a top shelf coach. However, that being said a C- GM would have to admit failure. That won’t happen what has Gorton ever accomplished, and that being said let’s look at team president John Davidson.

    • JG was heavily responsible for the Bruins winning the SC a decade ago, so there’s that. JD was involved in the Blues SC for what it’s worth. Does that answer your “question”?

      • Glen Cameron Sather has won 4 Stanley Cups with Oilers. How many Cups did he win with the Rangers? Does that answer your “question”?

        • I answered the question. He simply asked what they had accomplished, I told him. If he asked about Sather, I would have responded with his SC’s. Past performance isn’t always an indicator of future success, but I answered his very specific question without providing my own judgment about how they might eventually fare here. Words are important.

          • “ JG was heavily responsible for the Bruins winning the SC a decade ago, so there’s that”

            He was temporary GM for 3. O the there and conducted one draft, a good one o question about. But none of those players were top contributor during the Cup. Facts matter too

          • Aside from overseeing a great draft, what about the trades he made? Like Rask for Raycroft. He did more in a ridiculously short period of time than most GMs do in years.

  • There are lots of good players on this Ranger team. If Gorton and Davidson add the missing elements they will be a very competitive team next year. The point that I like about Chris post is the one where he references that every Islander never leaves his assignment. That’s great advice for the Rangers.

  • Nice post. You knows it coming….However, Quinn needs to go. I am not saying his is a bad coach or hasn’t developed soem on our kids. I can’t say for sure if the orders are comIng from Jeff Gorton either.

    #1. Honest assessment is he has lost the locker room from day one. He benches certain players for mistakes while not benching others for the same. Can you name more than 1 game the Rangers came out with spirit, intensity, and desire? That’s on the coach.

    #2. His game plans are elementary and he has proven he has no in game adjustments skills. Latest example, is Trotz took away our best player, (Paranin) Quinn had no adjustment. He has been displayed now for 3 years. How many times this year did we yell at the TV to Skate, Shoot the puck, Take the body? We looked indecisive, ALWAYS giving up the blueline putting our goaltenders in high danger situations. A type of style that is not sustainable for a playoff team.

    #3 Quinn is a Type A personlity. He came in with It’s his way of the highway(except) for his Favorites. Ranger veterans obviously, havent bought into his philosophy and has has split the divide in the locker room more. How many times after a lost have we heard from Kreider, Trouba, “The effort needs to be better. We’ve made too many mistakes to overcome and win”. The players need a different voice that has NHL experience that they respect and will go through a wall for. I think all of us can agree the players want to close the door behind him once he leaves the room.
    #4 Quinn IMO is over his head at this level. I again state, he is not a bad coach but needs to be an assistant coach for a few more years to become that more successful. The time is now JG is on the clock to improve our leadership in the locker room build a physical team to protect our highly skilled players and name a CAPTAIN! Rotating “A” is another kick the can down the road, afraid to hold alll accountable.
    #5 Coaching Options:
    Gerard Gallant, Claude Julien and Bruce Boudreau.

    I prefer HC Gallant, with Boudreau Assisantant offense Coach taking over PP and keeping Jaques Martin on Defense.


  • Good read, Chris. I believe the Rangers will be making a few trades that will include young players/prospects in order to bring in some players that effectively compliment the skill players. Rangers, as the stand now, have too many of the same type of players, and those types of players and their style of play do not translate into successful playoff hockey.

  • Maybe Strome needs to go except he is a pretty good 2C. Maybe Chytil needs to go except you know if they trade him, he could become a perrenial 30 goal scorer (remember Rick Middleton?). So, its complicated. We do need a kick ass 4th line and 2 more punishing defenseman. That would a good start.

    • Strome has been good, but the bigger the game and the heavier the opponent the more he seems to shrink — and given the money he might command in his next contract (not to mention the term) they’re probably better off moving Chytil up. I don’t think they’ll lose much production-wise. Then they can focus on getting a big hardnosed C for the 3rd line.

  • first i love Fil moving him is so wrong. he is still learning. wanna get rid of some softies? to many to mention, i would start with the no show so called big names we have who did absolutely nothing these past two games.. the future is ours hope the FO doesnt blow it.

  • My goodness. This is a team with an enormous amount (too much) of blue chip prospects on d and for the most part on the wing and you want to move one of our only young promising centers. It’s no secret the rangers system is one of the best in the nhl but it’s also no secret it is very weak at center. So instead of dealing from your surplus you want to deal from the deficit ? SMH. Not to mention, it’s pretty clear it takes a while for some kids to get going in this league (Buch) and I get your point of chytil struggling to get the puck deep and trying to rely on talent too much. But let’s not forget he’s made a ton of strides since he first came up. You want to deal him now when we got him through two semi-frustrating years, right before he’s about to pop? Because of his style??? You don’t give up superior talent to fit your own style, you work your style to fit the talent of your players, that’s how you get the best out of him. Giving up talent for style makes for a bad franchise.

  • In 2019, the CBJs bullied TB all over the ice, and knocked out one of the most talented teams ever assembled in NHL history. I believe that TB had the 4th highest regular season pt total in NHL history, that year.

    That basically same TB team, took their medicine, and learned from it, modifying their style to perform better in the playoffs. And won a Cup.

    The Rangers have a nice group of talented players, but their style sucks as it relates to playing against defensive teams and for the playoffs, in general.

    A lot has to change, IMO. I assume that the coach is not going, which is major blunder #1, so it will be up to the players to change their styles, to better compete against the better teams, when the games mean the most. Not in Oct to Dec, but Feb to June.

    • Yes … we’ve all said in the past this team needs to learn how to win, that it’s a process and doesn’t just happen overnight — yet here everyone is in panic mode ready to blow things up. Trade Chytil, trade Mika and Strome, trade Kreider (who didn’t even play), trade Trouba (who didn’t even play), etc. People do realize that we were missing 3 of our most physical players in the last 2 games, right? Trouba and Lindgren are arguably are two toughest players … and Kreider, despite his occasional disappearing acts, will at least go to the crease and take the abuse.

      TB is a good example, progression is not linear, it will be made up of fits and starts. There’s no reason to panic here, instead they need to focus on leadership (that includes the coaches), the vets and the peripheral players (not in the sense of whether they’re pretty good or not, but on whether they add the necessary ingredients to what makes a good team). Rooney has played pretty well for example, but is he really a heavy enough player for THIS team’s 4th line?

      I think they should move on from Strome, promote Chytil, add a 2/3C with a serious set of balls who can win faceoffs, trade Blackwell (or just keep him as a depth player) and add a 4th line player that punishes the opposition …. add to that a skills coach who can focus on faceoffs. I would suggest something about DQ, but I think we all know that is probably not happening.

      Additionally they should consider a hardnosed veteran d’man — and since we have an open spot for a d’man in the expansion draft, we should be able to get someone’s 4th d’man relatively cheap. I’m OK with Hajek as a 6/7D, but if we lost him in the draft I wouldn’t cry.

      • I don’t think that the roster gets overturned, but those players have to play differently, that’s for sure. Panarin having no SOG is a big problem, unless he’s hurt.

        I want Chytil, Kakko, Lafren, and Kra playing major roles on the team. And in all situations, including PP and PK. They should have been already.

        But I don’t think the Rangers “trade everyone.” I think that they will make deals, for sure.

        • So let’s mortgage the farm on crybaby Jack Eichel who has done nothing to improve Buffalo so it sounds like a great move.

          • I’m not for that at all. I would rather he gets traded to the Kings, if he’s traded at all.

      • This is truly definition of the madness. Let’s try to do what has not worked before. Let’s bring another good player and wander why he can’t play physically. Let’s bring another center or defensemen and figure out why he does not become team leader. “ No wind blows in favor of a ship without direction.”

        I watched NFL draft the last 3 days and I have not heard a single GM or the coach not to idea of type of players they were drafting as it fits the direction of the team goals. I also have seen how much leadership qualities played in different selections. Given that NHL draft is different in drafting younger and less mature players one still would content that it should play a bigger role. Not of course to mention free agent signing this teams has done neglecting them

    • “That basically same TB team, took their medicine, and learned from it, modifying their style to perform better in the playoffs. And won a Cup.”

      Nah, the fact that they added a new makeshift 4th line. That was what helped change that team. Coleman, Goodrow and Maroon changed the dynamic of that team. They already had grinder’s who can bring more to the table at 5 on 5 vs guys like CK and Buch. I rather see JG pay Palat and Killorn types to be in the top 9. Regardless how you slice it, those names the jam you need in the playoffs.

      It starts by giving this team a legit top line like every other serious team. The KBZ line isn’t serious enough and the idea of spreading out talent to bank on Strome + elite skill will only go so far.

      Quinn wants aggressive play in the neutral zone. Rangers certainly don’t have the forward depth for that kind of style.

      • Come on, you’re saying that TB won a Cup because of the 4th line?

        That may have helped, but TB won because their talented players were not bullied by the opponents. They changed their style of play without wasting their talents and skills.

        • “They changed their style of play without wasting their talents and skills.”

          Nah I think you’re wrong here. Nobody changes their “style of play”….. I don’t know how many locker rooms that you been in but you always play within the system. It becomes a mental game on the ice just like on the football field. If you have this WR burning you with a quick jab to the inside. That CB will eventually adjust which goes back to the other guy. You think a wide out is running whatever just to get open? They will run their routes and will need to play the game within the game. Hence when to step up, when to pinch or not, get it in deep etc. All those fundamentals go out the window if our boys can’t play good IQ hockey.

          You’re underestimating what Goodrow, Coleman, and Maroon brought to what was already a good bottom 6 team.

          ^ Those three names effected Gourde directly who was originally was out of his element(hence the trade rumors of him). He has been a fake tough guy since entering the league. He now makes up for one of the most feared 3rd lines out of all the teams. That line is probably the most fast/physical with underrated skill as a 3rd line right now. That is the kind of line that you send out to shutdown or shut up any kind of line at any time in a game. They will help waste the other team’s top line energy in their end if you let them. 100% Maroon was a huge chunk of how Tampa won it all last summer. It gave them another elite bottom 6 line with Paquette who was on his last legs.

          • In 2020, Kucherov and Point had more than a point per game in those playoffs, and were the 2 leading scorers for TB, during the playoffs. Hedman was the 3rd leading scorer in the 2020 playoffs.

            In 2019, in 4 games, Pointe had one goal and Kucherov had none.

            So, tell me that the best players on the team were not the reasons for the win in 2020 and the loss in 2019. Obviously, those players changed the way they played to become more successful, after a year of complete failure.

          • The line that I named and the addition of Maroon was exactly what the doctor order. You have to give respect for Stevie Z to go out and gamble on those additions. That was money for the formula and team chemistry. It is still paying dividends today. Point and Goodrow are good friends away from the rink and everybody looks up to Maroon in that locker room. It’s not all about the Tom Brady’s and Lebron’s….

            I don’t know why you’re talking about their the top 6 and top D man. They where never going anywhere, Steve armored his bottom 6 with quality grinders. Those guys helped them get over their blow out to CBJ…..

    • “yes trade chytil but give 40 point magnet boy 70m … great asset management.”

      Chytil can’t even anchor the 3rd line. These past two games, Barzal has made him look silly in all three zones. It felt like Komarov was stripping the puck from him every other shift.

      • I dont expect 21 yo third line center to dominate vs barzal.

        I do however expect our TOP LINE RW to get a point in 4 games vs the isles

  • We need more grit at Center period. I think this series shows proof. We have the D coming in Schneider and Robertson. Would package a good d-man and center/forward and get Eichel.

  • First off. Let’s not aspire to be the New Tork Islanders. You know what they are? The Callahan/Girardi/McDonagh/Tortorella Rangers. Highly disciplined, hard working, role oriented. Those teams were a lot of fun, but just like this Islanders team, there was no Cup due to lack of high end skill.
    Make no mistake, high end skill still wins Cups. This Islanders team will make nice runs in the playoffs but will not win a Cup becuae they just don’t have the skill needed.
    What the Rangers should be looking at is the Cup winning Blackhawks/Lightning teams as inspiration. The Rangers are built more like those teams, with high end skill leading the way. This iteration needs time to learn how to win the games they have not yet won. It’s a process. And yes, there will need to be some tweaking of the roster, no doubt, but the core is solid and with time will learn how to win those types of games that took the Blackhawks and Lightning time to learn as well.

    • Thumbs up, I like your comment. The Islanders haven’t won anything … yet …. and I’m not too sure they will.

    • Agreed Beantown Rangers Fan, the Rangers have a lot of skill and that is what is needed to win a Cup. So does discipline and hard work. In the end, it is both that they need. I agree that the Isles don’t have enough Barzals in their lineup to win it all. But with their style and good goal tending they will win some games.

  • While I agree to a large extent on the analysis of Chytil’s play, I think that he has the tools to be coached to be a better player than he is presently. That doesn’t mean that I believe him to be untouchable. Rather it means that be careful when dealing him because he has a great deal of potential. You want to get quality in return if you deal this player. My preference is to retain and retrain the guy to be more aggressive, to finish checks, to carry and protect the puck. We have seen it in flashes, but he needs to be that guy all the time. I think that has possibilities.

    As far as Strome is concerned: He has played well, but I think that if the Rangers could yank a bigger, young center with potential from someone I’d do it, possibly promote Chytil and deal Strome. Yeah Jack Eichel would be an improvement, but at what cost? I’d go for a less shiny object.

    While the players play the game, with a young team like the Rangers coaching means a lot. I am not a Quinn hater, I think he has done some good things. On the other hand, if Torts was coaching this team I think you’d see a far more aggressive and disciplined product.

    • I think if they move Strome, promote Chytil, then they’re looking for a different “level” of Center — preferably big, strong, playing a heavy game and good on faceoffs. More of a 2/3C. Whomever he is he will have two good wings to play with … then tweak the 4th line to be bigger and more aggressive. Again, our 4th line has played relatively well over the course of the season, but maybe that 4th line needs to play a different style of game to be more effective overall. I wish someone could wave a magic wand and make Edstrom NHL ready.

  • The rangers usually get out hit and manhandled by bigger and more physical teams. This has been their demise for the past couple of decades. To many finesse players that lack size and grit. Even some of their bigger players play small)The bigger more physical and talented teams, (Islanders, Bruins, Capitals, Tampa Bay, ETC) go on in the play-offs. I think management is beginning to realize there must be more of a balance of speed, skill, grit and attitude.
    RANGERS ARE TO SOFT OVERALL, get outhit, shutdown and sometimes injured. Also allow to much physical abuse with little or no retaliation.
    Excluding skill,
    1-10 rate for grit, toughness, and attitude(a little bit of a mean streak)

    Morgan Barron 6′ 4″ 220 lbs– UNPROVEN
    Colin Blackwell 5′ 9″ 190 lbs – 5
    Filip Chytil 6’2″ 206 lbs – 3
    Brett Howden 6′ 3″ 197 lbs – 5
    Kevin Rooney 6′ 2″ 190 lbs – 7
    Ryan Strome 6′ 1″ 193 lbs- 6
    Mika Zibanejad 6′ 2″ 208 lbs – 3
    Phillip Di Giuseppe 6′ 0″193 lbs – 6
    Chris Kreider 6′ 3″ 217 lbs – 7
    Alexis Lafrenière 6′ 2″ 193 lbs- UNPROVEN
    Artemi Panarin 5′ 11″170 lbs – 3
    Pavel Buchnevich 6′ 3″ 197 lbs- 6
    Julien Gauthier 6′ 4″ 227 lbs – 5
    Kaapo Kakko24 20 6′ 3″ 199 lbs – 5
    Vitali Kravtsov74 21 6′ 4″ 183 lbs – UNPROVEN
    Anthony Bitetto 6′ 1″ 210 lbs – 7
    Adam Fox 5′ 11″ 181 lbs – 5
    Libor Hajek 6′ 2″ 203 lbs – 4
    Jack Johnson 6′ 1″ 227 lbs- 7
    Zachary Jones 5′ 11″ 185 lbs – UNPROVEN
    Ryan Lindgren 6′ 0″ 191 lbs – 8
    K’Andre Miller 6′ 5″ 210 lbs- 4
    Tarmo Reunanen 6′ 0″ 185 lbs – UNPROVEN
    Braden Schneider 6′ 2″ 202 lbs – UNPROVEN
    Brendan Smith 6 ” 2″ 200 lbs – 9
    Jacob Trouba 6′ 3″ 209 lbs- 8
    You will never win a cup with just a skilled soft unbalanced team that lacks toughness, grit and attitude!

    • Kreider is more like a 2 and Mika is more like a 1. Chytil is a 2 maybe. Strome isn’t a 6 either. More like a 4

  • PS: the only way to panish dirty teams like Isles and Caps is to socre on PP.

    Read The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference- by Malcolm Gladwell, the part about how Gulliany fixed crime, the same is about those 2 teams, make pay for the little sins to avoid big ones. Make them think twice before they play their dirty game

    • Assuming enough penalties are called. Islanders are one of the least penalized teams in the NHL.

  • Here is where I sit with this team, for the future:

    1) Let me very clear, I love the talent on this team. I think that, with a few tweaks, like getting a very good 4th line, and replacing the current dead wood, with younger, more talented players, the roster will be magnificent.

    2) Teams, especially in hockey, do not win with talent alone. There has to a total cohesive bond between the FO, the coach, and the players. All rowing in the same direction. My fear is, that I do not see this with the Rangers. There is a general strategy for getting younger and more talented, in concept, but I do not see the proper implementation of such a strategy.

    3) And I feel like the disconnect is between the FO to the players, the one person that connects the 2 extreme sides of the equation: The coach. I feel like he has TOTALLY misunderstood the strategy to be employed on the ice, with the types of players that he has. These players WILL NOT be north-south players. They will not. But that does not mean that there are not OTHER strategies that can be employed effectively, that utilizes the talents of the payers on the roster. The coach is not well versed enough to be flexible in his deployment of players and to modify his overall approach on his team’s play, IMO. All too often, he has no answers to the opponents’ tactics against his team.

    4) In addition, the coach’s stubbornness and insistence to play and not play players is to the point of sabotage. Yes, ALL coaches have their player bias, but this coach lives and dies on players that have zero business playing in the NHL. That’s how coaches get fired. Especially when the coach is not utilizing the players properly, that the FO worked very hard to acquire.

    5) The FO does not delineate properly, IMO, between “grit” and “face puncher.” Face punchers are no longer needed, but that does not mean that you do not have tough players in the line up, that CAN PLAY HOCKEY. Say what you want about Tom Wilson, and I hate him, but the man can play the game. He is not a one trick pony. The Rangers can easily have a 4th line of Morgan, Cuylle, and an NHL vet, that would be extremely effective. They don’t have to brawl, but they would have size and a presence out there like the Isles do with their 4th line. Being “harder to play against” means infusion of some of those types of players, AND a change of style of the current players that is done in such a way that it maximizes their skills and talents, but adds the element of “being hard on the puck” and better board play.

    So, this offseason is everything. This will tell us what the FO really thinks about this team. Doing nothing is not an option. I don’t see them replacing the coach, but they can still make adjustments that puts the team in better position to succeed in the near future. BUT, it is up to THEM.

    • Love your 4th line idea. I think you can keep Rooney around too in that situation.

      Where I question you (and everyone asking this question) is on the Tom Wilson-type player—what team is going to give up a player like that? And who would it be? Who’s realistically available with decent skill to go with a fearsome physical game? It’s not to nitpick, genuinely curious as to who’d fit that bill. Would love to see Will Cuylle grow into that type of player.

      • You don’t get those type players from the outside, you draft them, and bring them through your own system.

        And BTW, the Rangers have done an awful job with the most important position in the NHL: center. No team wins the Cup without centers. you can even get away with an average goalie, if you have dominant centers, like the Pens did with Murray in nets.

        • Center has been a problem for NYR like goaltending is for Philly. It goes back decades. The last time the Rangers had a great 1/2 center setup was Messier/Gretzky, and they were imports. The good teams of the 2010s had mostly imports down the middle besides Stepan. Brad Richards/Stepan/Brassard was pretty solid too, although none of those guys were as physical as Messier. Maybe the lack of center success is because of the curse of trading Doug Weight years ago.

          • Recently, that’s because the Rangers haven’t tried. Who have they drafted, other than Chytil and Lias, to try and fix the problem?

          • Don’t forget JT Miller. And even though they didn’t draft Kevin Hayes, he established himself in the league as a Ranger.

            Although on their best day, Miller and Hayes are 2nd line centers. Miller’s success in Vancouver has come on the wing.

          • The only ones besides Stephan are Dubinsky and Anisimov. Even if you add Miller to this list who had not played center for the team it would still be the drafts before Gorton took over. N six years of Gorton there are Chytil and Anderson. And Barron who they played mostly left wing. But the argument of drafting “best available player” or myth still remains

        • “You don’t get those type players from the outside”

          I don’t agree here. Goodness knows Patrick Maroon has kicked around from team to team. The Rangers got Brandon Prust from the outside. The problem with getting these players from the outside is that the FO can’t seem to tell the difference between Maroon and Glass.

          But you are right that such players can be developed. Wasn’t Gettinger supposed to be one of these?

          • That could be the vet that I mentioned Raymond. But 2 of the 3 are from our system.

  • Hi all,

    Perhaps a coaching change would be a good step in the right direction. Rangers have talent, no doubt but its not being utilized properly. My desired coaches: Rod Brindamour, Peter Laviolette, or Knoblauch. We need a coach that has experience winning and can get the best out of his players. This team is not consistent and it shows. On a side note, I love watching stanley cup winning teams DVD’s. The build up of that team, and right before the trade deadline, the team acquires the player or two to really make a run at the cup. Or they sign a player of two during the offseason. That player or players offer them depth and really balances out the team. Examples include: Madden signing with Chicago helps them win a cup, williams in LA wins the cup and conn symthe trophy, pitt sick talent up front back to back cups. I know they are examples but why cant JD and JG be creative in the signings or trades? This is my take on DQ, correct me if I am wrong. He needs 2 seasons to asses his team, and still cannot determine what he needs to get the team to the playoffs and further? I just dont get it, where is the communication between quinn and JD and JG? Yes its a rebuild, ok I get that, but how many more seasons will it take to get the Rangers back on track?

    Panarin season 1: playoffs out round 1
    Panarin season 2: maybe playoffs
    Panarin season 3: perhaps playoffs win round 1
    Panarin season 4: playoffs win round 2
    Panarin season 5: should be a cup contender, maybe win it all?
    Panarin season 6: build on season 5 win again?
    Panarin season 7: playoffs go far

    Apply that to Trouba and Kreider as well if they dont get traded.

    My assessment is Rangers can be a cup contender in a few years, I seriously feel that, but we need the right coach, the right players too. Eichel costs the rangers 10m/season. Cant the Rangers be creative and get a C that costs less?

    They also need size and grit players. Idk how Kreider can do his disappearing act, Kreider playing on Caps, Kreider on Bruins, Kreider on Blues, he would play much better. Correct me if I am wrong, Rangers have too many of the same players, nothing different. 30 million is being invested among 3 players, eichel would make it even worse. Also, look who the rangers would trade for him and our cap would be very close to the max. This is one of the most important off seasons in a long time. Management messes it up, Rangers never winning a cup or two. They do it right, its within reach.

    I hope all are safe and well through this pandemic and that things are getting better. Playing ice hockey really helps get me through this, i love the game. I really do miss my bauer APX stick, lol, these new vapor sticks have blades of butter, so poorly designed.

  • My only issue here is dealing Chytil is dealing from weakness to try and fill a weakness. We’re more overloaded in just about every other area on wing, defense, and even just some softer skilled players overall.

    To me, trading Chytil doesn’t really fix things. It delays them and were still basically looking for another center relatively soon. Maybe not as urgent, but you’d still need centers.

  • It seems like every year we say the Rangers are too soft. If it’s not in their nature, they just cant be north south players. We can have Torts, Don Cherry, and Trotz as coaches, it’s still a finesse team. A few tweaks are needed. Add Schneider, Robertson, Cuylle, Edstrom, Barron to the team to add much needed backbone. Dont trade for Eichel, salary too high. Add a UFA center with size, and faceoff skills. That is killing us.

  • I did not hear anything from DQ soft like the ice cream, and you expect your team to have respect for you.

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