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12-05-2013, 02:28 PM
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Originally Posted by chosen View Post
Boston would be the team that had the luxury of having Bergeron on the second line and Seguin often on the third line. Their 4th line may have been the best in the league last year.

I would point to that as the primary reason for their success. You would point to Scott Thornton as the reason.

Rangers also had no equivalent players to Krejci and Lucic on the first line.

Team toughness matters. Fighting doesn't. Some people say it does but I never see any proof of it. The last time it was like that was in Philly, 40 or so years ago.
I think that I agree for the most part. Boston is sort of a difficult example for us to discuss because they simply are one of the most solidly constructed teams that I can remember from their top lines, to their bottom lines, to their defense, to their goaltending. They really do offer something for fans of any style of hockey. Again, I think the real takeaway from the Bruins is that they clearly have an identity that began when they signed Chara and they've continued to supplement it.

I dont think that the Rangers need 5-7 players to immediately begin to change/develop a sustainable culture because I know that it isnt realistic to immediately find more than one or two players capable of adding toughness with enough offense to justify a role on anything other than the 4th. I value toughness, which I feel inherently involves the occassional fight, but even I'm not crazy enough to suggest adding more than one or two players that provide little more than hitting, fists, and a snarl. Over time it would be terrific to develop the Neil's, Lucic's, Simmonds', etc that we can reasonably expect to excel in a larger role but for the time being give me a guy like Bickel on the 4th and McIlrath on the blueline if he's ready and I think we're on the right path.

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