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Farewell Zuke! (Signs with KHL)

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Old
05-31-2012, 02:58 PM
  #301
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No way is he an 80 point player. He can be very useful on a 2nd/3rd line for us though.

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05-31-2012, 03:17 PM
  #302
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bleed Ranger Blue View Post
Dont turn that Euro comment into some sort of race-bait or something like that. It is not hard to do as it is very derogatory. Firstly, Europe is not a country. It is 49 seperate countries. Generalizing like this is hmmm, not kosher. But being judgmental like this is also very irritating to hear as it is so narrow minded and kind of puts you in the firing line. I have lived half my 49 year life in North America (US and Canada) and half in Europe (Sweden, Norway, Iceland, Norway, Germany and Poland). Also a brief stint in Asia. Played hockey both in NA and Europe to elite junior level.

But, honestly, North American hockey is more rugged and gritty. The NHL is and always will be that way too. So, to talk about how blocking shots and board play shouldnt matter/isn't "real hockey" is the ignorant thing to say here. Agreed

And, sure enough, whenever a comment like that is made, its from a person who is used to watching hockey be played on a larger rink that have next to no knowledge regarding what it takes to be successful at the NHL level. You are probably right. But be the better man and say something else not bringing nationality or continental origin, cuz it really is not the issue...

If you're not a well-rounded player, and only depend on offensive skill, you better damn be uber-talented in one of those offensive areas. Skating, shot, stick handling, vision, whatever. Zuccarello, while skilled, isnt an extraordinarily talent in any of those areas. Vision, hockey sense and passing were all top class IMO. The rest I can agree with. I personally think Zuke could have injected more positive things in our lineup - but he did not get the amount of ice time to prove it. ESP PP. But IMO it is a small issue and most likely would have had no effect on the final outcome of the season whatsoever.


And thats why hes headed back to Europe. True dat, but let's see if he gets traded first. 10% chance IMO.
Peace

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05-31-2012, 03:20 PM
  #303
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I would like to comment that the the google translation of the article in Norwegian Nettavisen has some inaccuracies in wording etc. So if you get offended by certain words then you need to remember that the translator can have chosen worse words than he said in Norwegian.

The essence of the interview is that MZA feels he's good enough to play in NHL, but Tort doesn't trust his abilities enough to use him. He says he wants to be a Ranger and in the NHL, but he needs to play to develop as a player. He feels he hasn't been treated very well by Tort. He knows Sather is eager to keep him, but MZA knows Sather doesn't decide who will play or not.

What MZA says is just the same as everybody else has written on the forum for months. You can read between the lines that MZA feels he has waited long enough and if he doesn't get a chance to play in NHL then he has to look elsewhere. What's wrong about feeling like that? We can all agree that hockey players don't improve by playing in the AHL for a long time. MZA has been there for a year and has proven there he's good enough being in a better league than AHL.

I believe MZA won't get a regular place in NYR as long as Tort is the coach. Magnitogorsk knew that MZA could be available and contacted MZA's manager while he was injured. They stayed away while NYR was still in the playoff and MZA was almost recovered. Once the season had ended for NYR they contacted Ryman again trying to get a deal. What they got was not a signature from MZA, but a deal where Magnitogorsk would be the team MZA would go to if his career in NHL is over. Magnitogorsk know that MZA can still remain in NHL. What they got is that they have first choice if he returns to Europe.

Some claim that he didn't show loyalty by not turning down an offer from Magnitogorsk. What should he have done when a good KHL team contacts his manager. KHL could be his way out if his NHL future is over. MZA doesn't know what NYR will offer him. He probably suspects he won't get a one way offer. So he keeps all possibilities open by not rejecting the interest from Magnitogorsk, but at the same time says to them that he prefers to play in NHL. This way he has both options open.

At the same time the interest from KHL sends a signal to NYR that unless they give a decent offer to MZA they might lose him to Europe, thus leaving them nothing at all for him. So if NYR wants something for MZA they need to trade him to another NHL team. The ball is in the hands of NYR. If they end up with nothing for MZA they can only blame themselves for not wanting to trade him. I don't feel sorry for NYR. They have not appreciated MZA's skills and then they just have to accept they lose him.

I really don't understand the hype about NHL being the only series you can play in. You're not a failure if you play in KHL instead of the NHL. NHL is a very good series with many great teams, but it's not the only place they know how to play hockey. If you look at the Olympics and World Championships you don't see USA and Canada dominating. The best team now is Russia. Canada can sometimes fight for the championship, but USA rarely play in the final. I know the best Canadian / US players are still in the playoff, but that be said about Swedish, Finnish and Russian players too.

So I think MZA should go where he gets a chance to play regularly. He needs it to develop further. If it can happen in NHL with a team, then it's good, but if it's in the KHL instead then it's not bad either.

I hope MZA leaves NYR and gets a shot in another NHL team. One reason is how many NYR fans feel about him. If they think he sucks in playing, is too small, not loyal etc. then he shouldn't waste his skills in NYR. His best revenge could be going to e. g. Detroit Red Wings and score the deciding goal against NYR in next year's play-off.

To all of you saying that MZA isn't good enough for NYR then what loss is it if he's leaving? Isn't it better to just ignore him and let him go. If you get angry at him possibly leaving then you're actually showing that you rather saw him staying in NYR because he's an asset the team can benefit from.

Shouldn't the NYR fans rather be angry at Tort for not using the skills of MZA or at least for not getting someone good in return for him.


Last edited by Stauffenberg: 05-31-2012 at 03:27 PM.
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Old
05-31-2012, 03:32 PM
  #304
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Which important Russians were missing in the WC this year? Kovalchuk is the only one. Ovi, Semin, Datsyuk, Malkin were all there. Americans missing? Callahan, Brown, QUICK, Parise, Stepan, Kreider (they both played in last WC) Canada had the same problem. Winning the WC doesn't mean your style is the best. I can argue that Canadians and Americans play the best style, because those were the finalist teams in 2010. While this wouldn't be the only way of looking at it, at least Olympic rosters are full. Half of the US and Canada teams won't be college or junior players, that's for certain.

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05-31-2012, 03:48 PM
  #305
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bleed Ranger Blue View Post
Blocking shots and board play are "anti-hockey?"

Spoken like a true European.
I was born in Brooklyn. I have never stepped a foot in Europe and I have no problem saying having 6 guys playing goalie at 1 time is boring as heck. I played this game for decades. I also coached the game. The players have sticks in their hands for a reason. Laying down all over the defensive zone makes the game a convoluted mess and definitely does take away a lot of the entertainment value. Can it be effective? Yes. So was the trap and that made NHL hockey boring as well. Let the guys play actual hockey.

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05-31-2012, 03:49 PM
  #306
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Henriks Broadway Hat View Post
Which important Russians were missing in the WC this year? Kovalchuk is the only one. Ovi, Semin, Datsyuk, Malkin were all there. Americans missing? Callahan, Brown, QUICK, Parise, Stepan, Kreider (they both played in last WC) Canada had the same problem. Winning the WC doesn't mean your style is the best. I can argue that Canadians and Americans play the best style, because those were the finalist teams in 2010. While this wouldn't be the only way of looking at it, at least Olympic rosters are full. Half of the US and Canada teams won't be college or junior players, that's for certain.
Hold it one second please, There have been 4 Olympics with NHL professionals being available. 1 win for Czech Republic, one for Sweden and 2 for Canada. WHat is also interesting to note is that when the games have been held in North America then The Canadians have won, when held outside North America then European teams have won. The US has faced off against Canada (and lost) in both Olympic finals held in North America.. When games are held outside of North America, neither Canada nor the US have gotten any medals.
Somewhat follows the trend of the soccer World Cup with South American and European winners alternating depending on where the games are hosted. WC means very little in terms of actual competition as all the best players never participate. That is a crap shoot for sure depending on what players decide to play and/or are eliminated. More to appease the European fans I guess and put some money into the corrupted pockets of the IIHF.


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05-31-2012, 03:56 PM
  #307
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Originally Posted by NickyFotiu View Post
I was born in Brooklyn. I have never stepped a foot in Europe and I have no problem saying having 6 guys playing goalie at 1 time is boring as heck. I played this game for decades. I also coached the game. The players have sticks in their hands for a reason. Laying down all over the defensive zone makes the game a convoluted mess and definitely does take away a lot of the entertainment value. Can it be effective? Yes. So was the trap and that made NHL hockey boring as well. Let the guys play actual hockey.
If you are as familiar with the sport as you claim to be, you'd notice that the Rangers collapsing and blocking shots is a last resort in the defensive zone. It takes commitment, grit, and a lot of other things that have been lacking from several Ranger teams over the last 15+ years. It helped limit a lot of goals against and create a lot of wins this season - that is fun and entertaining to me.

Lets go back to the days where a broken Pavel Bure was in Ranger blue. Or lets put a completely overmatched Zuccarello in there so he can wow you with a nice play on the PP a few times, while pucks accumulate in our net each game. Cause that sounds fun.

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05-31-2012, 04:01 PM
  #308
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Bleed Ranger Blue View Post
If you are as familiar with the sport as you claim to be, you'd notice that the Rangers collapsing and blocking shots is a last resort in the defensive zone. It takes commitment, grit, and a lot of other things that have been lacking from several Ranger teams over the last 15+ years. It helped limit a lot of goals against and create a lot of wins this season - that is fun and entertaining to me.

Lets go back to the days where a broken Pavel Bure was in Ranger blue. Or lets put a completely overmatched Zuccarello in there so he can wow you with a nice play on the PP a few times, while pucks accumulate in our net each game. Cause that sounds fun.
These are the same people who actually enjoyed that pond hockey series between Pitt and PHI. 9-3 sounds like a fun way to lose a game!

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05-31-2012, 04:04 PM
  #309
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stauffenberg View Post
I would like to comment that the the google translation of the article in Norwegian Nettavisen has some inaccuracies in wording etc. So if you get offended by certain words then you need to remember that the translator can have chosen worse words than he said in Norwegian.

The essence of the interview is that MZA feels he's good enough to play in NHL, but Tort doesn't trust his abilities enough to use him. He says he wants to be a Ranger and in the NHL, but he needs to play to develop as a player. He feels he hasn't been treated very well by Tort. He knows Sather is eager to keep him, but MZA knows Sather doesn't decide who will play or not.

What MZA says is just the same as everybody else has written on the forum for months. You can read between the lines that MZA feels he has waited long enough and if he doesn't get a chance to play in NHL then he has to look elsewhere. What's wrong about feeling like that? We can all agree that hockey players don't improve by playing in the AHL for a long time. MZA has been there for a year and has proven there he's good enough being in a better league than AHL.

I believe MZA won't get a regular place in NYR as long as Tort is the coach. Magnitogorsk knew that MZA could be available and contacted MZA's manager while he was injured. They stayed away while NYR was still in the playoff and MZA was almost recovered. Once the season had ended for NYR they contacted Ryman again trying to get a deal. What they got was not a signature from MZA, but a deal where Magnitogorsk would be the team MZA would go to if his career in NHL is over. Magnitogorsk know that MZA can still remain in NHL. What they got is that they have first choice if he returns to Europe.

Some claim that he didn't show loyalty by not turning down an offer from Magnitogorsk. What should he have done when a good KHL team contacts his manager. KHL could be his way out if his NHL future is over. MZA doesn't know what NYR will offer him. He probably suspects he won't get a one way offer. So he keeps all possibilities open by not rejecting the interest from Magnitogorsk, but at the same time says to them that he prefers to play in NHL. This way he has both options open.

At the same time the interest from KHL sends a signal to NYR that unless they give a decent offer to MZA they might lose him to Europe, thus leaving them nothing at all for him. So if NYR wants something for MZA they need to trade him to another NHL team. The ball is in the hands of NYR. If they end up with nothing for MZA they can only blame themselves for not wanting to trade him. I don't feel sorry for NYR. They have not appreciated MZA's skills and then they just have to accept they lose him.

I really don't understand the hype about NHL being the only series you can play in. You're not a failure if you play in KHL instead of the NHL. NHL is a very good series with many great teams, but it's not the only place they know how to play hockey. If you look at the Olympics and World Championships you don't see USA and Canada dominating. The best team now is Russia. Canada can sometimes fight for the championship, but USA rarely play in the final. I know the best Canadian / US players are still in the playoff, but that be said about Swedish, Finnish and Russian players too.

So I think MZA should go where he gets a chance to play regularly. He needs it to develop further. If it can happen in NHL with a team, then it's good, but if it's in the KHL instead then it's not bad either.

I hope MZA leaves NYR and gets a shot in another NHL team. One reason is how many NYR fans feel about him. If they think he sucks in playing, is too small, not loyal etc. then he shouldn't waste his skills in NYR. His best revenge could be going to e. g. Detroit Red Wings and score the deciding goal against NYR in next year's play-off.

To all of you saying that MZA isn't good enough for NYR then what loss is it if he's leaving? Isn't it better to just ignore him and let him go. If you get angry at him possibly leaving then you're actually showing that you rather saw him staying in NYR because he's an asset the team can benefit from.

Shouldn't the NYR fans rather be angry at Tort for not using the skills of MZA or at least for not getting someone good in return for him.
When Zuke leaves his whole contingency of patriotic "NYR fans" will be gone with him too - I presume. Not really rooting for The Rangers it seems for the most part, just fanatically following one player. Kinda funny actually...

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05-31-2012, 04:11 PM
  #310
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBKers View Post
When Zuke leaves his whole contingency of patriotic "NYR fans" will be gone with him too - I presume. Not really rooting for The Rangers it seems for the most part, just fanatically following one player. Kinda funny actually...
These people you are talking about have been sitting up until 5-6 AM watching this team without MZA playing. I think anyone, whatever their reason for following this team, deserves some respect.
As for some of you wanting NYR to be some kind of secret society where you have to walk through fire, get a tattoo, or have a membership card to be accepted as a "true fan", you are just rediculous. Stop patting your own backs for being the ultimate fan, and please, stop the whole "i hate the bandwagon" deal. It just juvenile and pretty pathetic

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05-31-2012, 04:25 PM
  #311
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Originally Posted by Bleed Ranger Blue View Post
If you are as familiar with the sport as you claim to be, you'd notice that the Rangers collapsing and blocking shots is a last resort in the defensive zone. It takes commitment, grit, and a lot of other things that have been lacking from several Ranger teams over the last 15+ years. It helped limit a lot of goals against and create a lot of wins this season - that is fun and entertaining to me.

Lets go back to the days where a broken Pavel Bure was in Ranger blue. Or lets put a completely overmatched Zuccarello in there so he can wow you with a nice play on the PP a few times, while pucks accumulate in our net each game. Cause that sounds fun.
I have no need to over state or understate my experience with the game.

I played rec league as a kid
I played high school
I played club level in college at CW Post
I have coached, reffed and played as an adult

Defense is important in hockey as in most sports. That does not mean having 6 guys try to play goalie at once sprawling all over the ice is entertaining. I want to win but winning alone is not entertaining for me. I like to watch actual hockey. I like to see players skills. If I wanted to watch 1-0 or 2-1 games all the time I would not hate soccer as much as I do. Hockey has long had specialists that were good shot blockers but that did not mean that you should turn every player on the team in to a shot blocker. I did not see guys like Bossy or Gretz sprawling along the ice for shot blocks. They were interested in getting the puck on their stick to go the other way. Bure was one of my favorite players because he was exciting to watch. Why do you keep making this in to an anti European message? There have been plenty of highly skilled North American forwards in the NHL that were not shot blockers. Is that why you hate Zooks? Because you hate European players?

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05-31-2012, 04:29 PM
  #312
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Originally Posted by BBKers View Post
When Zuke leaves his whole contingency of patriotic "NYR fans" will be gone with him too - I presume. Not really rooting for The Rangers it seems for the most part, just fanatically following one player. Kinda funny actually...
That may be true for some but your generalization fails because I have lived and died with the Rangers since the early 1970's. I'm a big Zooks fan. That doesn't mean I'm any less a NY Rangers fan.

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05-31-2012, 04:32 PM
  #313
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Originally Posted by Henriks Broadway Hat View Post
These are the same people who actually enjoyed that pond hockey series between Pitt and PHI. 9-3 sounds like a fun way to lose a game!
I remember being at a game where we beat the Fishticks something like 10-2 or 10-3 in the early 1980's. I loved it. The crowd was in to that game 10 times more back then they are in recent seasons.

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05-31-2012, 04:35 PM
  #314
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Originally Posted by Bleed Ranger Blue View Post
Or lets put a completely overmatched Zuccarello in there so he can wow you with a nice play on the PP a few times, while pucks accumulate in our net each game. Cause that sounds fun.
Sir..

Not trying to pick a fight with you, but zuke is +3 in 52 NHL games so far on limited ice time.

If you saw his last 4 games before injury you'd see he played a good D game - even guys in here were impressed. So he can throw his body around.

The last straw that put him of was likely game 6 vs devs where he said he was ready but Torts choose an injured half skating player instead.

The devs had all our guys figured out, so why Torts didn't play the unknown playmaker zuke card is what (helped)cost us the cup.

But that's just my humble opinion and hey what do I know - I'm just the guy that survived on 90 mins of sleep most game nights. You see, some people had to go to work after every game.

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05-31-2012, 05:05 PM
  #315
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Originally Posted by NickyFotiu View Post
I remember being at a game where we beat the Fishticks something like 10-2 or 10-3 in the early 1980's. I loved it. The crowd was in to that game 10 times more back then they are in recent seasons.
Great. Meanwhile, I was at a 6-1 win vs. the Panthers this year, and the Garden was dead. (This was a weekend, mind you.) then, I was at the 1-0 win vs. the Debbies. Crowd was much louder. If you want a sport where defense isn't even in the question, the NBA playoffs are going on right now.

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05-31-2012, 05:10 PM
  #316
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Great. Meanwhile, I was at a 6-1 win vs. the Panthers this year, and the Garden was dead. (This was a weekend, mind you.) then, I was at the 1-0 win vs. the Debbies. Crowd was much louder. If you want a sport where defense isn't even in the question, the NBA playoffs are going on right now.
I thought I clearly said that defense is important in most sports. That doesn't mean defense is the only thing important in most sports. Maybe we should just put super pads on all 6 players and stack them all in front of the goal until it is impossible to put a puck in the net unless there is interference? That would be a super defense. Is there any rule against playing 6 goalies as long as only 1 is allowed to freeze the puck in the crease?

When a team wins 10-2 instead of 2-1 they must have played bad defense. I see your logic...oh wait no I don't. lol.

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05-31-2012, 05:16 PM
  #317
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Originally Posted by NickyFotiu View Post
I thought I clearly said that defense is important in most sports. That doesn't mean defense is the only thing important in most sports. Maybe we should just put super pads on all 6 players and stack them all in front of the goal until it is impossible to put a puck in the net unless there is interference? That would be a super defense. Is there any rule against playing 6 goalies as long as only 1 is allowed to freeze the puck in the crease?

When a team wins 10-2 instead of 2-1 they must have played bad defense. I see your logic...oh wait no I don't. lol.
Don't you understand? This team doesn't have the TALENT to win like that. When Torts coached in Tampa, he had much better young offensive talent. He ran a more open system, even in the dead puck era. I guarantee you, we get some actual talent, our system will change. I hate the collapsing crap too, I want them to pressure the point, but on offense, the players are clueless what to do. There's no one in front of the net. But hey, we gave the Devils 10 odd man rushes a game. That was fun, right? Oh wait, it sucked big horse ass.

Midget Mats, who apparently has a big ego to boot, is NOT GOING TO FIX OUR PROBLEM. Get over this guy already.

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05-31-2012, 05:19 PM
  #318
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Originally Posted by NickyFotiu View Post
That may be true for some but your generalization fails because I have lived and died with the Rangers since the early 1970's. I'm a big Zooks fan. That doesn't mean I'm any less a NY Rangers fan.
Did not mean you at all, I too liked watching Zuke play, but there were a certain amount of posters here that were quite new and seemed to only fanatically care about the plight of Mats Zuccarello, not the team as a whole at all. Call them Bandwagoners or whatever...
They will not be missed because I highly doubt they will be here in a year.
Real NYR fans care not about one player, neither do they have any kind of secret society or pedigree as insinuated, they only care about their team! Rant rant rant. I saw Rangers games in the old Garden as a kid in the 1960 s btw...
G night

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05-31-2012, 05:24 PM
  #319
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Interesting phenomen this Zuccarello; either you love him or hate him, I bet all would love him if he was 4 inches higher. He developed his defensive game to satisfy Torts but he held the injury against him in a cruical moment, not fair in my opinion. An injury as a direct result of Torts will, he even got the puck away with the other arm while in great pains,most playres had just dropped the stick and went for the locker room. He shouldnt play under Tortorella again, he probably has to over achieve in every game to get ES time just because he doesnt like his height.

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05-31-2012, 05:27 PM
  #320
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Did not mean you at all, I too liked watching Zuke play, but there were a certain amount of posters here that were quite new and seemed to only fanatically care about the plight of Mats Zuccarello, not the team as a whole at all. Call them Bandwagoners or whatever...
They will not be missed because I highly doubt they will e here in a year.
Real NYR fans care not about one player, neither do they have any kind of secret society or pedigree as insinuated, they care about their team! Rant rant rant. I saw Rangers games in the old Garden as a kid in the 1960 s btw...
G night

I understand your point that some (not all) of them might only be here for Zooks and will leave if Zooks leaves. That is probably true. I also understand the other side of it. When Barry Beck came out of retirement I wasn't a huge LA Kings fan but I rooted for them with Barry, Wayne and Lucky Luke as long as they were not playing my Rangers. I'm a NY Rangers fan and I always will be but I'm also a fan of individual players. I do not know your exact age but you probably remember when the Rangers traded Eddie to Detroit the MSG crowd rooted for Eddie all game. They even booed a Ranger that scored on Eddie. I have had several favorite players through my life so I understand that kind of loyalty. On the other hand it gets annoying at times if some Avery fans go over the line. It is situation where I can see where fans of a one player can get annoying yet I can understand when fans are loyal to a player.

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05-31-2012, 05:28 PM
  #321
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if brian boyle gets a spot on this team and zucc doesn't there's a problem

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05-31-2012, 05:32 PM
  #322
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Originally Posted by Henriks Broadway Hat View Post
Don't you understand? This team doesn't have the TALENT to win like that. When Torts coached in Tampa, he had much better young offensive talent. He ran a more open system, even in the dead puck era. I guarantee you, we get some actual talent, our system will change. I hate the collapsing crap too, I want them to pressure the point, but on offense, the players are clueless what to do. There's no one in front of the net. But hey, we gave the Devils 10 odd man rushes a game. That was fun, right? Oh wait, it sucked big horse ass.

Midget Mats, who apparently has a big ego to boot, is NOT GOING TO FIX OUR PROBLEM. Get over this guy already.

While I want more offensive talent if we force creative guys to act like straight up and down robots without the freedom to create then adding more offensive players still will not change much. I actually think this team has at least 6-9 (Gabs, Richards, Hagelin, Stepan, AA, Duby, Cally, Kreider, Boyle are all possible) guys that can all possibly score 20-40 goals so they have as much or more offensive talent than most teams.

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05-31-2012, 05:33 PM
  #323
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When Zuke leaves his whole contingency of patriotic "NYR fans" will be gone with him too - I presume. Not really rooting for The Rangers it seems for the most part, just fanatically following one player. Kinda funny actually...
Hockey is a very small sport in Norway. MZA is the only one in NHL at the moment. So it's only natural Norwegians who like hockey hope he does well and want to follow him and not a particular NHL club. If the player stays in the club for awhile then they might start to appreciate the club too. I believe quite a bit of the Norwegians following NYR now will remain after MZA is gone.

None of the bigger TV channels in Norway show any NHL games so it's hard to build up a fan base for NHL teams here.

The sad truth is that almost every Norwegian hockey player going to NHL is coming back to Europe after a few years, after getting tired of playing in the AHL after being relegated. It seems MZA is about to join that group of players.

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05-31-2012, 05:41 PM
  #324
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Originally Posted by NickyFotiu View Post
While I want more offensive talent if we force creative guys to act like straight up and down robots without the freedom to create then adding more offensive players still will not change much. I actually think this team has at least 6-9 (Gabs, Richards, Hagelin, Stepan, AA, Duby, Cally, Kreider, Boyle are all possible) guys that can all possibly score 20-40 goals so they have as much or more offensive talent than most teams.
Boyle's 20 goals are the biggest fluke since Cheechoo.

When our offensive guys do get creative, it's usually not as a group. So you get a bunch of guys who have no idea what's going on. Turnovers are a result. Those stupid spinning backhand passes to the slot from the corner? That's their attempt (Cally specifically) to be creative. Once in a while, you might get lucky, and it results in a goal. (See Gabby goal vs. Minny, and Cally made a few of those passes early in the year.) but that's a turnover most of the time, and often leads to an odd man rush. I agree that your first line should be offered a bit more creativity than your third line, but look at it: We've got Hagelin, who will chase down pucks, not someone who will carry it and make an assertive pass. Richards can play the puck possession game well enough. gaborik? The guy has serious issues receiving passes in stride. And carrying the puck isn't a major pro to his game either. I think the Kreider-Stepan combo will maybe do this next year, but then Callahan is the odd man out. He doesn't fit the system you want either.

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05-31-2012, 05:44 PM
  #325
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Originally Posted by Henriks Broadway Hat View Post
Which important Russians were missing in the WC this year? Kovalchuk is the only one. Ovi, Semin, Datsyuk, Malkin were all there. Americans missing? Callahan, Brown, QUICK, Parise, Stepan, Kreider (they both played in last WC) Canada had the same problem. Winning the WC doesn't mean your style is the best. I can argue that Canadians and Americans play the best style, because those were the finalist teams in 2010. While this wouldn't be the only way of looking at it, at least Olympic rosters are full. Half of the US and Canada teams won't be college or junior players, that's for certain.

Well, you don't win any medals unless you participate. Some years ago there were world championships after the NHL play-offs were completed. I remember Canada playing with Gretzky, Lemieux etc. So all countries had their best players.

The result was almost the same as in the regular world championships held earlier in Spring. Canada, USA, Russia, the Czech republic, Sweden and Finland all had a decent chance to win the tournament. This proves that no particular country or region has dominance in hockey. All these country leagues generate great players.

Some years ago USSR truly dominated hockey with mega stars like Krutov, Larionov and Makarov. The hockey played then by them is probably the best hockey I've ever seen. Still, US amateur players managed to beat the Soviet elite team in the Lake Placid Olympics hockey finale in 1980. One of the best moments of my life.

My point is that you find probably almost as many great players in the KHL as in the NHL. Russia seems now to be the strongest hockey team in the world. So you might see more NHL players leaving for Russia in the future. Maybe not Americans and Canadians, but at least Europeans.


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