Sunday, October 31, 2010

Is MZA Heading Back To Sweden?

Update (Monday 8:15 AM ET):  

Puck Central reader Henrik has sent over a new link with more on the story from the Swedish website that was involved in starting the rumor yesterday. Henrik translated a quote from MZA:
I’m not ready to give up. I’ll work my butt off, this is a chance that I’ll maybe never get again.
Thanks to Henrik for the article and translated quote.

Update: According to Jesse Spector of the Daily News "Confirmed there is no truth to the Swedish newspaper report that Mats Zuccarello is leaving NYR and the Hartford Wolf Pack."

There are rumors circulating around Mats Zuccarello Aasen this morning after a recent article that appeared on a Norweigan website

I found this story via the HFBoards where there is some discussion on the issue including some posters who are translating pieces of the article. If the translations are accurate then it doesn't sound like MZA is too happy right now. However, as we know from past rumors, translating articles and quotes aren't always accurate and sometimes even changing the meaning of one word can cause a sentence to take a completly different meaning.

The one thing I did find strange, which I wasn't aware of is that MZA is playing on the Hartford fourth line? I thought I had read that he was on one of their top two lines. Putting him on the fourth line isn't exactly the best way to hone his craft to play in the NHL in my opinion.
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Saturday, October 30, 2010

Video: Prust v Komisarek

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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Grachev Recalled, May Play Friday + Other News

Update: 11:02 AM ET:

According to Jesse Spector of the Daily News, "Grachev has been told he will play for NYR tonight."
It looks like Michal Rozsival and Artem Anisimov who both left last night's game against the Thrashers with injuries are ok and will be in the lineup on Friday night against the Hurricanes. Funny how Rangers fans went from booing Rozsival to actually being worried that he might be out of the lineup for an extended amount of time. It would have been terrible news for the Rangers if Anisimov was injured for any length of time because he has really clicked on a line alongside Dubinsky and Callahan.

According to Andrew Gross, Derek Boogaard will be a game time decision tomorrow night when Carolina comes to the Garden. Apparently Boogaard got a cut on his hand in a fight with Shawn Thornton last weekend and now the cut is infected. I said earlier this season that there will be games where Boogaard can sit because the other team doesn't have a fighter. Carolina is one of those teams.

The Rangers today recalled forward Evgeny Gracehv from Hartford. I'm assuming that Grachev will be Boogaard's replacement if he can't play because of the hand injury. It's possible that Gracehv could also play in place of either Todd White or Erik Christensen. If you've been reading what I've had to say this season so far you'd know that I'm not a fan of Erik Christensen, thankfully it appears that he's falling out of favor with John Torotrella as well. Like I've said before, Christensen may not only be one of the softest players in the league, he's also possibly the most inconsistent.

Tortorella today told Ranger Rants:
“It’s about trying to make a difference," “We continue to bring it to his attention. But, sooner or later, the player’s got to grab a hold of it.”
It's about time Tortorella made Christensen accountable for being absolutely useless in pretty much every game to date this season that he's played in.

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Video: Stick Checking Just Won't Do!

Don't get me wrong, these were two sweet goals. But, on both goals the Rangers were guilty of stick checking. Actually, on the first goal, I'm not sure what the pylon, errr Staal was doing. On the Kane goal Anisimov just stuck his stick out, Evander Kane made a nice move and fired away. Play the man, not the puck!

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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Preview: Rangers vs Thrashers

Update 5:10 PM ET - According to Steve Zipay:

Biron starts for NYR. Gilroy, Eminger on D, no Sauer
  • The game will be on MSH+ because the Knicks season opener is tonight. You know what that means, a lot of nights where the Knicks have priority over the Rangers. I don't mind as long as the Rangers are on MSG+ and the game is in HD. I hate when the game is broadcast on a non-HD station just because the Knicks are playing.
  • Heading into tonight's game the Rangers have won three straight, while the Thrashers have lost three straight. 
  • John Tortorella hasn't named his starting goaltender for tonight's game but it's expected to be Henrik Lundqvist. Andrew Gross speculates that Biron may get his second start of the season on Saturday against the Maple Leafs.
  • Like the Rangers, the Thrashers are currently battling a few major injuries to their star players. According to The Blueland Blog, "both Freddy Meyer and Zach Bogosian are on the shelf."

  • Thrashers starting goaltender Ondrej Pavelec who made news earlier this season when he mysteriously fainted during a game is currently in the AHL on a conditioning assignment, so backup goaltender Chris Mason will get the start tonight.

  • Power Play: Rangers 22nd in NHL (12.5%), Thrashers 8th in NHL (20.5%)
    Penalty Kill: Rangers 24th in NHL (79.4%), Thrashers 26th in NHL (75.7%)

  • Andrew Ladd leads the Thrashers with 8 points (3 goals) in the first eight games of the season. Brandon Dubinsky leads the Rangers with 7 points (4 goals) through the first seven games.

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Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Callahan Calls Out Fans, Defends Rozsival

During the pre-season I predicted that the boo birds were going to get on Rozsival this season:
For as far back as I can remember there's been at least one Rangers defenseman that the Rangers fans jump all over. There was Tom Poti, then Marek Malik and most recently Wade Redden. Book it, this season Michal Rozsival is going to be hearing from the Garden boo birds A LOT. Rozsival is actually a semi-decent defenseman, another guy who is significantly overpaid but he's not as terrible as some fans would have you believe. Hopefully he has a strong start to the season because once those boo birds start, they are relentless!
After Sunday night's win over the Devils, Ryan Callahan told Andrew Gross that hearing the fans boo Rozsival “gets under my skin.”
“Look at how many minutes he logs per night and what he does for us,” Callahan said. “It’s disappointing to hear the boos coming from the stands. It’s unfortunate he gets that. I don’t think it’s right. I don’t think he should.”
Just another example of Callahan showing his leadership. Callahan is a fan favorite and when he stands up for a teammate like that there's always the chance of his popularity with the fans being affected somehow. I give Callahan a lot of credit for saying what he believes and standing up for Rozsival. There are times when Rozsival really gets under my skin but there are plenty of players that have worn the blue that have gotten under my skin and haven't heard the wrath of the boo birds. Rozsival may not be worth his contract, but he's not a terrible defenseman. Hopefully he continues to shoot the puck like he did against the Devils the other night. Sadly, Rozsival probably had his best game of the season and he still had to hear the fans booing. So much for giving a guy credit when it's due.

For those wondering how many minutes a game Rozsvial is playing, he's currently 14th in the league averaging over 25 minutes per game through the first seven games of the season. He's averaging almost a full two minutes per game more than Marc Staal, who many Rangers fans consider to be the team's number one defenseman. Not to mention, he's currently tied for second on the team in scoring (with Callahan) with six points, only Brandon Dubinsky (7) has more points.

I think it's time the boo birds take Callahan's advice and shut their mouths for at least a few games. Rozsival's play to start the season has at least earned him that much.

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Monday, October 25, 2010

Williams Returned To Hartford & White's NYR Almost Over?

Jeremy Williams was sent back down to Hartford today. Williams played a limited fourth line role in last night's win at the Garden over the Devils.

It's never a good thing when the coach doesn't know how to use you. That's the case for veteran Todd White according to Larry Brooks. After last night's win, Tortorella told the media:
"I don't know what he is as a player. It really isn't fair to him. I don't think he has a ton of confidence in his play and I have a lot to do with that as far as the spots I've put him in and how I've spotted him in certain areas.

"I'm concerned about his speed and I've talked to him about that. But I don't think I've given him a fair shake."
In my opinion it's about time White was sent down to Hartford. I don't know what the Rangers are doing by keeping a 35 year old with a cap hit of $2.375M who plays less than six minutes every other game on the roster. It would be one thing if White were a power play or shootout specialist but Tortorella admitted that he doesn't know what to do with White. Granted, White's ice time has been limited, but he hasn't shown me much so far.

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Friday, October 22, 2010

Hank or Marty?

Marty Biron played pretty damn well last night--yes, the Rangers blocked 30 shots, but he did have some very quick leg and glove saves on certified goal scorers. The problem, (which is a good problem) for the Rangers brass, is do they start Biron to keep him rolling or do they throw Hank into the net and go with the Rangers franchise player? Decisions, decisions....

Surprisingly, I think that the Rangers should start Biron tomorrow night in Boston and I will tell you why. Here's a few reasons:

1) After watching him play, he is definitely capable of going into an opponents stadium and walking away with the 'W'.

2) The Ranger players have the mentality that since good ole' Hank isn't keeping the net safe, they have to play hungrier to make up for the "backup" goalie, a screwed up mentality, but a flaw that they proved true last night nonetheless.

3) Giving Biron another game under his belt will boost his confidence, especially if he plays well. This can only help the Rangers in the long run with an emotional guy like Biron.

4) Giving Hank another two days off can only benefit him as well, as he always shows up against the Devils and is usually very sharp when he has some ZzZZzzZz's.

5) Hank should absolutely start in net at MSG on Sunday night, meaning Hank will have 5 games and Biron 2; a high ratio (10:4), but as long as they're both playing well, it's worth the risk this early in the season.

6) Having two goalies playing well in the first 7 games of the season would be a great start for them, as increased confidence is a particularly important booster for goalies.

7) You can argue that it was the Leafs who lost the game and not the Rangers who won it last night, but you cannot argue that the Rangers were tighter on D and sacrificed their bodies to keep the puck away from the net more so than the first 4 games (Biron effect)?

At least that's my opinion. I was never to high on Biron over the years watching him, but after seeing him play well and the Rangers play well in front of him, I'd like to see him again against a solid opponent (Boston is 4-1).

UPDATE: Lundqvist gets the start tonight. Can't go wrong with the king in net, but I was hoping to see Biron in another game. We will in time. Big game tonight, let's keep that winning streak rolling..
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Thursday, October 21, 2010

Video: Hockey Commentator's Slip of The Tongue

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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Sauer To Play Thursday

According to Andrew Gross Mike Sauer returns to the lineup tomorrow night after a two game absence.

@AGrossRecord: Mike Sauer in on defense tomorrow for #NYRangers. Either Matt Gilroy or Steve Eminger will be out.

The last time a change was made on defense, many thought Eminger would be benched for Gilroy. Instead, the Rangers opted to bench Sauer. Hopefully this time Tortorella decides to bench Eminger to make way for Sauer.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Video: Canucks' Rypien Attacks Wild fan

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Best Opening Night Ceremony Performance In NHL History

This was the performance prior to the New York Rangers home opener this past Friday night in case you missed it. Wouldn't want you to have missed that awesome performance :)

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Monday, October 18, 2010

Tonight's NYR Lines

The New York Rangers didn't make any call ups this weekend after the injuries to Chris Drury and Marian Gaborik this weekend.

Here are the lines that the Rangers practiced with on Sunday and are the lines likely to start the game on Monday night against the Avalanche.

Frolov - Stepan - Fedotenko
Dubinsky - Anisimov - Callahan
Avery - Boyle - Prust
Boogaard - Christensen - White

Staal - Rozsival
Del Zotto - Girardi
Gilroy - Eminger

Remember the game is on Versus. According to Puck The Media; Sam Rosen, Darren Eliot and Bob Harwood are the TV crew for the game.
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Saturday, October 16, 2010

Video: Great Hit, Horrible Call By Refs

These are the BS calls that many of us were afraid were going to creep into the game as a result of the new "no hits to the head" rule. Letang's hit was a solid, clean hockey hit. This is what physical hockey is all about. Letang never makes contact with Comeau's head, it was all shoulder. It was only a matter of time before we saw a ref make a ridiculous call after a huge hit that was actually within the rules.

Oh yeah...and want to know some more interesting information regarding that clip? You see that Islander (Josh Bailey) that jumps on Letang's back, he got a two minute penalty for that. Unbelievable. Listen, I'm all for being allowed to go after an  opponent after they hit a teammate but this just shows how inconsistent the referees in the NHL are. On any other night, Bailey likely gets at least four minutes. Most nights he's getting a misconduct and  possibly even enough penalty minutes to challenge Dave Schultz's record for most penalty minutes in one NHL season.

It's a sad day in hockey when hits like these are penalized!

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Injuries: Gaborik Out 2-3 Weeks, Drury Out 6 Weeks!

According to Andrew Gross:
Chris Drury out six weeks with broken left index finger. Same finger as before, new break. Marian Gaborik, left shoulder, out 2-3 weeks. Marian Gaborik's shoulder is separated.
Vinny Prospal will undergo surgery on his knee on Tuesday and is out indefinitely. 

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Friday, October 15, 2010

Is There A Solution To NYR Defense Problems on Waivers?

Today Larry Brooks analyzed the problems that the Rangers are currently facing on their blue line and why they are substituting Matt Gilroy into the lineup for Mike Sauer. Apparently, out of the seven defensemen that the Rangers have on their roster, only Marc Staal and Michael Del Zotto play the left defenseman role naturally.

The Rangers have tried playing Eminger there and Mike Sauer there and so far John Tortorella has not been satisfied with how either player has fared in that position. Tonight, Matt Gilroy is getting a chance to show what he can do, but unfortunately for him, he's being forced to play on the left side, even though his normal position is on the right.

Brooks suggested that Glen Sather might have to look outside the organization to resolve the problem unless they decide to recall Ryan McDonagh from Hartford. McDonagh who was in camp until the final cuts naturally plays the left defenseman role. But, it's possible that the Rangers want to give McDonagh more time in Hartford to develop.

Interestingly enough, one of the players placed on waivers today is Boris Valabik of the Atlanta Thrashers who is a defenseman with a left handed shot. Now, I don't know much about Valabik other than the fact that he's HUGE (6'7 -245lbs), I have no idea if he plays big (not sure how good he is at fighting, but he is willing, here's a clip of him fighting Chara). I also know that he's probably most famous for being punched in the balls by Sidney Crosby.

According to the beat writer for the Thrashers, Valabik is a "hard-working guy who does his best every night. Got caught in a numbers crunch."

At 24, Valabik is still young, he's an RFA this summer and his cap hit is less than $800K. 

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Orr Will Play Tonight Against Rangers

After the punch that Colton Orr received just a few nights ago there was speculation that he wouldn't play tonight against the Rangers. But, Ron Wilson today told reporters that Orr will be in the Leafs lineup.

Now, that doesn't guarantee that he and Derek Boogaard will drop the gloves, but it certainly makes it much more likely than if Orr wasn't in the lineup (obviously!). Rangers fans (and fight fans in general) have been anxious to see The Boogey Man get in his first fight as a Ranger. It didn't happen in pre-season when Leblond of the Devils did everything he could to avoid Boogaard. It didn't happen again on Monday when the Rangers played on The Island and Gillies and Boogaard played a combined total of under 4 minutes all night. 

It's a well known fact that Boogaard is one of the most feared fighters that has ever stepped onto an NHL rink. Not only is he a good fighter, without any other word to describe it, he's LARGE. Very Large! Boogaard towers over most other players and is almost twice the weight of some guys playing in the NHL (ie. Zuccarello-Aasen).

Colton Orr is no slouch. We in New York had the privilege of watching Orr become one of the best fighters in the NHL. When he was acquired off waivers from Boston not many in New York knew who he was. Well, let's just say that Orr quickly introduced himself. Many, including myself, were furious when Orr was signed by the Leafs via free agency two summers ago.

No matter who you ask, these two guys are considered to be amongst the best in the NHL at their job. I'd venture to guess that no one who ranks fighters has these guys outside of their Top 5. But, they've never fought each other in the NHL. With Orr playing his entire career in the East (Boston, New York, Toronto) and Boogaard spending his entire career before becoming a Ranger in Minnesota, they haven't met very often. The last time they fought they were playing in the WHL.

No one will fault Orr if he doesn't want to go tonight after that punch he was on the receiving end of the other night. But, if I know anything about Colton Orr, it's that the guy is an absolute warrior. He suffered a similar loss to Matt Carker last season and a few nights later came right back at Carkner and delivered his own TKO. I fully expect Orr to come back tonight and be seeking out Boogaard looking to re-establish himself as one of the best in the business after that TKO by relatively unknown Deryk Engelland two nights ago.

The good news for fight fans is that this is the first of three meetings between the Rangers and Leafs in the next twelve days. So, chances are that if they don't go tonight, we will see them dropping the gloves some time before Halloween!
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Thursday, October 14, 2010

Gilroy To Play vs Leafs

According to Andrew Gross
Matt Gilroy in, Mike Sauer out for Rangers tomorrow vs. Leafs. Gilroy will play left side and Eminger will move back to the right.
Word spread yesterday that Matt Gilroy was likely to make his first regular season  appearance on Friday night against the Leafs. I think that most agreed with me that the likely person sitting out would be Steve Eminger. Well, it doesn't matter what we thought. John Torotorella instead has decided to bench rookie Mike Sauer. I'm a little surprised by that move, I don't think Sauer has been the worst defenseman to start the season. In fact, he hasn't made any real standout mistakes from what I can remember.

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New Giveaway - The Most Valuable Prize Yet!!!!

We've had several competitions here recently, the most recent being a guest blogger competition. This time around the prize is going to be BIGGER and the competition is going to be a whole lot EASIER!

This time the grand prize will be dining room chairs. Yes, I'm kidding!

The fine folks over at CSN Stores have given us a $100 gift certificate to give to one of our lucky readers. Which means, if you wanted you could buy some dining room chairs.

I had my eye on their site Every Game Room, they have a ton of hockey stuff for every NHL team and it's perfect for creating your own man cave :)

Or, you could use the $100 more wisely for stuff that you really need. Heck, if you win, it's your money, you get to do what you want with it!

 How to enter:
1. Start following the Puck Central blog on blogger. You can do this by clicking the "Follow" link in the blogger status bar at the top of the page or by clicking here
2.  Follow Puck Central on Twitter and post this message: Entered to win $100 via @PuckCentral  -- easy to enter Follow & RT
The competition is open until Thursday, November 4th @ 9PM ET and the winner will be selected using

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Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Video: Engelland TKOs Colton Orr...Boom!

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Video: Funny Mike Cammalleri Easton Commercial

Follow Easton Hockey and Mike Cammalleri on Twitter: @Easton_Hockey and @MCammalleri13 for the chance to win an EQ50 stick, signed by Mike Cammalleri.

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Drury Will Play Friday Against Toronto

John Tortorella today confirmed that Rangers' Captain Chris Drury will be in the lineup for the home opener on Friday night when the Rangers take on the Maple Leafs.

Not only that, but all signs indicate that Drury will start the game on the top line between Frolov and Gaborik. That is where he played during practice today. Tortorella today said after practice that he didn't want to mess with the Anisimov and Stepan lines.

Personally, I don't have a problem with starting Drury on the top line. He was a major disappointment  last year and this will give him the opportunity to get some confidence in his game again. But, I wouldn't want this to drag on and on if Drury shows that he's not capable of playing as the number one center. The top spot is available because Eric Christensen is out for at least the next game with a pulled hamstring that he suffered against the Islanders in the third period.

On defense, nothing confirmed yet, but according to Andrew Gross, it looks like Matt Gilroy will replace Steve Eminger. 

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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Messier To Coach...

Mark Messier will coach Canada in both the Deutschland Cup and Spengler Cup according to The Hockey News.
For those that don't know what the Deutschland & Spengler Cups are, here's a good explanation from the CBC :
The Deutschland Cup team will be comprised of German-based Canadian pros and played next month in Munich.
The Spengler Cup is held in late December in Davos, Switzerland, and typically features a Canadian team made up of players from around Europe, along with a few others on loan from the American Hockey League.

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Video: Wisniewski Obscene Gesture Towards Sean Avery

While watching the first period of yesterday's Rangers/Islanders game I saw Wisniewski making the gesture towards Avery and I immediately thought to myself, did he really just do what I think he did? Then, after re-winding using the DVR, I got the confirmation that I was looking for (and took a picture of it, below). Unlike some, I actually thought it was pretty funny.

I watched the first period of the game, then had to go out so I ignored hockey news all day so that I could catch the rest of the game via DVR last night. After the game I was surprised to see how big a deal some people were making about the gesture. If Nick Boynton gets fined for his throast slashing gesture during pre-season then I expect that Wiz will get something similar. It's not suspension worthy. Then again, like many have already said (including Avery himself), if this was Sean Avery.....what would the punishment be? Possibly banishment from the league forever!

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Video: Parros Flicking Jackman's Chin


You have to watch the whole clip (or fast forward to near the end). 

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Monday, October 11, 2010

Rangers Still Interested in Brad Richards

This is just one of those rumors that won't go away. It's been speculated for over a year now and Larry Brooks is talking about it again today, which is certain to generate more discussion on the issue. According to Brooks:
It's an open secret that the Rangers covet Dallas' first-line center Brad Richards, an impending unrestricted free agent who won the Conn Smythe Trophy for Tortorella's 2004 Cup winning Lightning. It would be no surprise if the Blueshirts attempt to acquire Richards ($7.8M) as a rental during the season before locking him to a long-term deal.
What exactly would it take to land a player of Brad Richards' caliber? I'm assuming that the Stars will want Brandon Dubinsky as part of the package. But, obviously the closer it gets to the trade deadline the less they are likely to get in return for a pending UFA who is a possible rental.

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Looks Like Drury Will Play Friday

According to Larry Brooks:
It's beginning to sound as if Chris Drury, sidelined since Sept. 20 with a broken left index finger, will be available for the Rangers' home opener Friday night against the Maple Leafs.

It's inevitable that Drury will be back in the lineup soon. When he does return, it will lead to the problem that Bill talked about yesterday - who will he replace in the lineup? I see a shuffle with Drury possibly starting the season on the wing.

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NHL Center Ice Free Preview

I wasn't around last week to post this but in case you were not aware, NHL Center Ice is available for a free preview for many cable customers across North America.

According to the NHL:
NHL Center Ice will be offered free by cable systems across the country for the first 18 days of the season.

From Oct. 7-24, fans will be able to watch up to 40 out-of-market games per week, as well as see the numerous innovations that are part of the 14-channel package.

Among the features are a multi-screen mosaic, featuring all the current action, with score and clock, available on the first channel of the package. There also will be a stats channel, and when possible dual feeds, featuring home and road broadcasts of the same game on separate channels. The package also will offer up to 12 games per week in high definition.

Participating cable companies are: Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Cox Communications, Bright House Networks, Cablevision Systems, Bresnan Communications, Charter Communications, Midcontinent and Verizon FiOS, plus a number of independent affiliates.

Fans who purchase a full season of NHL Center Ice by Oct. 31 will receive the Early Bird price of $171.80.
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Sunday, October 10, 2010

Here Comes Drury! Whose Place Does He Take?

by Bill Pulice

Congrats to Derek Stepan for his tremendous debut performance in Buffalo.  Only special players fulfill such an achievement, and Ranger fans we have one in Stepan!  Enjoy the ride to a potential Calder Trophy winner.  Sounds good, doesn’t it? 

Now we must transition from promising youth to aging veteran... not what Ranger fans want to hear - but it’s reality.  This week we have Chris Drury coming back into the fold and to the dismay of many will play on a nightly basis.  So the question is … who will lose a center ice position and what line changes will happen as a result? 

Anisimov, Stepan, and Drury (Sather) have secure spots.  I give Boyle credit for making the team.  With all the competition in camp I thought of him as a long shot.  But for a 4th line center, his size and improved skating molds him well for that position with minimal minutes (however, he must use that frame to bang more bodies on a consistent basis to secure that position).  That leaves us with Christensen who currently occupies 1st line duties.  Something is amiss here.  Is Christensen fit for either 1st or 4th line duties??  You tell me. 

If Torts really wants to DEVELOP more young players into the line-up, Anisimov belongs on the 1st line.  What better way to speed up the development of AA than to put him with our best scorers and log top scoring minutes?  Dubi and Cally (two 20 goal scorers) will not do this for AA. 

Christensen (26) is in his 6th season and has never eclipsed more than 33 points.  AA got 28 points in his rookie year logging less than 13 minutes between 3rd and 4th line duties.  Christensen scored last night… great.  It was a lay-up!  I would rather see AA getting those goals from Gabby and reach at least 50-60 points, as opposed to a journeyman with unfulfilled talent.  Management may like his talent, but someone has to go.

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Video: No Lady Byng This Year For Datsyuk :)

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Saturday, October 9, 2010

And Here..We..GO

Its opening night for the New York Rangers tonight against Buffalo (interstate rivalry?) which should be a great game. Lundqvist/Miller, Gaborik/Vanek, Myers/Staal, Frolov/Roy, Torts/Ruff..some real intruiging matchups to watch for.

Yea, Miller won the Vezina and Myers won the Conn Smythe, but the NYR are certainly a deeper team than Buffalo. No, Tim Kennedy will not be suiting up to play against the team that cut him loose 8 weeks ago, a testament to the Rangers depth. There's been an abundance of Rangers coverage the last few weeks to the point where if I heard people debate lineups, rumours or injuries one more time, I would've snapped like a Vladimir Malakhov stick.

But, alas, the new season is here! And with it, comes a whole new bag of things to talk about and beat to death with this blog, so sit tight, the puck drops only 6 hours, and 18 minutes from now.

Posted by NYRSU
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Monday, October 4, 2010

Monday Morning Musings

There are plenty of things going on in with the New York Rangers, both on and off the ice. Vinny Prospal is actually hurt worse than we the fans ever knew, and, according to Larry Brooks, might even reqiure season ending surgery to fix his right knee. This would open up space upfront, and as you can see the lines, his presence isn't truly missed, yet. This morning the Rangers are practicing with lines that can be the opening night roster, barring any possible trades:

Frolov-Christensen-Gaborik Dubinsky-Anisimov-Callahan
White and Kennedy

That lineup is well balanced and speedy. I am especially keen of the second and third line after watching the preseason and seeing how well Anisimov is skating as well as Derek Stepan. Very excited that the kid from Wisco is playing with such intensity (3 goals, 2 assists) and is looking like he'll make the team The third line had a camp to remember, and even though bragging about preseason is like scoring a sweet shootout goal in practice, merit must be given to Avery and Feds who played astonishingly well. The team is now, as it once wasn't, full of depth, to the point where Tim Kennedy and Todd White, who are pretty good players, aren't even dressed.

The issue arising with all these role players is that on the back end, the Rangers have 5/7 righty defensemen, something that is important enough to start trade talks to acquire another lefty D. Michael Del Zotto and Marc Staal are the lone lefties, but this is a huge reason why Sheldon Souray pickup talks have been slowly escalating each day. Souray has a huge cap hit ($5.4 mill) and might not be the guy the Rangers end up with. However, NYR scouts have been watching both Cloumbus and Edmonton preseason games, spawning intense trade rumours that go as far as saying: Dubinsky and Rozsival for Andrew Cogliano and Souray.

I like to think of myself as a realist, and that particular rumour is just plain dumb. But, this is what happens when Ranger pro scouts attend more than a few games of other teams. Nobody truly knows who the Rangers are focusing on, or who they're shopping around, but the depth the team now has (including many prospects in AHL) could lead to a potential swap. I'm thinking that we'll know sooner than later on this particularly burning question.

-Posted by NYRSU

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Video: The NHL's Greatest Glass Breaks and Bench Hits

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Friday, October 1, 2010

Donald Brashear Signs With...

Sean Leahy of Puck Daddy says that the one year deal is "confirmed by team PR, Donald Brashear has signed w/ GCI de Sorel-Tracey of the LNAH"

It looks like Donald's days in the NHL are over, for anyone who thought there was shot he'd sign with an NHL team.