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Rangers playoff scouting report

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04-03-2012, 01:53 PM
  #1
RangerBoy
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Rangers playoff scouting report

ESPN Insider article. Craig Custance spoke to NHL coaches,players and scouts about the Rangers

Quote:
Key strength: Tortorella gets the most out of these Rangers, and they've continued to progress toward being a legitimate Cup contender with a focus on defense and consistency. "It's the defense-first mentality and their consistency over the year of playing a specific style of the game," one coach said. "John Tortorella had my vote for the coach of the year because I don't think that team is that good. I think he did a marvelous job taking that team from eighth to first, and his team isn't that deep. It's more than [Henrik] Lundqvist. Tortorella drives them."

Key weakness: Scoring depth. The Rangers have Marian Gaborik, who has been outstanding all season, and the postseason is the time Brad Richards should especially thrive. That's why he was signed. He's a proven playoff performer, but outside of him, this roster doesn't have a lot of guys with a track record of scoring goals in the postseason. And even Gaborik has just one goal in his past 11 playoff games. Callahan has never had a postseason in which he's eclipsed two goals. Stepan is looking for his first career playoff goal.

"It's a good thing to be able to win those games 2-1, but the night you need four -- do you have enough to get there?" the coach said. "They have two guys that you know can put up numbers if they have to in Gaborik and Richards. Callahan is a good player. After that, there's not a lot of proven guys.
"
Quote:
Why they can advance: Oh yeah, on top of all these strengths, they have the best goalie in the game. Henrik Lundqvist's career playoff stats are down from his regular-season numbers, with a postseason save percentage of .909 and a 2.60 goals-against average. But this is the best team he's had around him, and Lundqvist is more than capable of winning a playoff round by himself. "I like everything about the Rangers," the scout said. "They have all the parts, including one of the top goaltenders in the world, which might be the most important part of any of the teams making a run in the playoffs."
http://insider.espn.go.com/nhl/story...w-york-rangers

An eastern conference scout made the above comments.

Some other items. The same scout made some nice comments about Brandon Dubinsky. He likes him a lot. Dubinsky has the ability to take his game to another level from what he has seen this season. The scout feels Dubinsky has been pushed out a bit. Translation. His role of the team has changed. Dubinsky does have 15 points in 22 playoff games.

Marc Staal. The same scout said Staal is operating at 80% and he feels Staal can raise his raise to a very good level in the playoffs.

Wonder who that coach is? It has to be an eastern conference coach who sees the Rangers more than 1 or 2 times a season. I think its Laviolette. He has made comments about the Rangers playing well. Not that they're a very good team.

Custance has written scouting reports on the Blues,Red Wings and Penguins. Same format.

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04-03-2012, 01:56 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RangerBoy View Post
ESPN Insider article. Craig Custance spoke to NHL coaches,players and scouts about the Rangers





http://insider.espn.go.com/nhl/story...w-york-rangers

An eastern conference scout made the above comments.

Some other items. The same scout made some nice comments about Brandon Dubinsky. He likes him a lot. Dubinsky has the ability to take his game to another level from what he has seen this season. The scout feels Dubinsky has been pushed out a bit. Translation. His role of the team has changed. Dubinsky does have 15 points in 22 playoff games.

Marc Staal. The same scout said Staal is operating at 80% and he feels Staal can raise his raise to a very good level in the playoffs.

Wonder who that coach is? It has to be an eastern conference coach who sees the Rangers more than 1 or 2 times a season. I think its Laviolette. He has made comments about the Rangers playing well. Not that they're a very good team.

Custance has written scouting reports on the Blues,Red Wings and Penguins. Same format.
Hey stall and Dubi elevating their game that is exactly what i thought would be important other than the obvious.

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Old
04-03-2012, 02:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by satrabyk View Post
Hey stall and Dubi elevating their game that is exactly what i thought would be important other than the obvious.
Those two guys could be the difference between a second round bounce and a trip to the finals. Dubi has always raised his game for the playoffs, and Staal continues to improve a little bit at a time.

That being said, it's all moot if Hank, Gabby, and Richie Rich don't make an impact.

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04-03-2012, 02:10 PM
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Staal gets better with each game and Dubi is the type of player who can handle the physicality and grind of the playoffs. I wouldn't be surprised if some opponents underestimate them come playoff time considering the struggles they've both had this season.

Stepan and Anisimov worry me a little bit. I fear that some of the playoff virgins could struggle... Del Zotto, Bickel, Hagelin, Stralman, Mitchell. We'll need our playoff veterans like Feds, Richards, and Rupp to step up and lead the way. Girardi is our most experienced defenseman and he needs to be a rock on D.

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04-03-2012, 02:13 PM
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I fell asleep during that article.

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04-03-2012, 02:17 PM
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The article kind of pointed out the obvious but I really liked this quote:

Quote:
Good athletes push themselves until they hurt. Great athletes push themselves while they're hurt.

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04-03-2012, 02:46 PM
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I agree with that coach's assessment. On paper, just looking over the roster, the Rangers don't look as good as their record shows. After Gaborik and Richards there is a dropoff in terms of talent among the skaters. Lundqvist's elite goaltending and the team buying into Tortorella's philosophy are the key reasons for success.

St. Louis is another team that's like the Rangers, but they don't even have a Gaborik-level scorer this year but allow even less.

That said, the Rangers will be a tough opponent for anyone these playoffs. And Lundqvist will be huge. We see teams go on runs in the playoffs every year and it's almost always the goalie who they're riding. Lundqvist is the one player that gives me hope that this roster can go really far because he can play at that level where he's stopping nearly everything.

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