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04-18-2013, 01:15 PM
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Originally Posted by Bluenote13 View Post
Good points.

I agree the whole team has been off, and the coach doesn't seem to think that's his area of concern, much like the PP.

But at what point do you say this guy is not keeping his end of the first line minutes? Then what, Brassard as de facto #1 with Nash? Then Brad brings down the 2nd line, whoever the hell that will be on any given night. Or maybe hope that Lindberg is as great as I make him out to be and he miraculously, seamlessly slides into first line minutes
I would say Stepan as the de facto #1, then Richards and Brassard as two decent but flawed 2C/3C tweeners. At least until someone else steps up. I could see us rolling with that until Richards gets bought out, with Miller (after spending next year on the wing) or Lindberg (after spending the start in CT and the end on the 3rd/4th line) taking his spot.

Originally Posted by Bluenote13 View Post
At the very least, the PP should have been this guys B & B, he had control of the puck with options, he seems to make the opposite decision of what he would have done in his first season here. Defensively he's a liability, not to mention skating through Hank's crease with the puck, what the hell was that !?
I think the the first bold is connected to the second. Since Torts will roll 3 lines consistently the only "cutting" of his ice time we will see is on the PP. There is not much about Torts that inspires confidence for me but I could see him permanently bumping him off the 1st unit. Right now he is leading the NYR in PP ice time. For at least the rest of this year that has to change.

Most of this is just academic. Even if Richards was performing at a high level, having a 32 year old locked up for 7 more years is not acceptable under the new CBA and its retirement rules. So he gets likely bought out in '14 no matter what. Lets just hope he sees another potential payday (elsewhere) and goes nuts in his last year as a Ranger.

He looked great towards the end of the year and the playoffs. I think he has it in him.

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