Who needs to surpass expectations next season for the team to be better?
Thanks to holding off on buying out Brad Richards, we haven't done much in terms of a significant talent upgrade to push us into the next level. (Not that I'm complaining.) Obviously, it never hurts for the whole team to exceed expectations, but with that said, which individual player player or two do you believe has to have the great season that can advance us into a deep playoff run once again?
I think it goes without saying if Brad Richards can give us more it will make things much easier in terms of quality depth in the lineup. It may be asking too much from him, but you have to believe he's got a chip on his shoulder heading into this season to prove he isn't the player that Torts was forced to bench in the playoffs.
Obviously, Brad Richards is going to be put on notice to produce this upcoming season since the Rangers didn't exercise their 2nd compliance buyout. And he better be well aware, since his body was lagging behind his hockey sense during the lockout-shortened season. The former Conn Smythe trophy winner really should take his conditioning seriously; as a professional hockey player with a bountiful contract it would tarnish his reputation to get bought out next summer if he ***** the bed once again in 2013-14...
As for MDZ, he better take care of his brain farts on the ice. Otherwise, it's trade bait for him and J Moore's presence on the backline might very well make him expendable in possible deals for a forward.
Girardi, I'm not too particularly worried about. If he's once again paired with a well-recovered Staal as his partner, his game should stabilize thanks to Staal's mobility in closing gaps which should free Girardi to concentrate on his specialty of blocking shots in the defensive zone.
Last edited by Blue Seat Spartan: 07-09-2013 at 08:15 PM.
Richards. It has to be him. Del Zotto has a case too. But Richards is the biggest piece.
If he can show up consistently, this team will contend. If he does, the team will have at least two second line centers (three, depending on Brassard's play). You can probably say they'd have two first line centers if Stepan continues his success from last season and Richards plays well and is in the game mentally. That'd do wonders.
His play on the power play is more important than 5-on-5, IMO. Last year, we lost games because of the power play. The momentum, good or bad, can have a huge effect on the game.
Nash, Callahan, Dorsett, and Stepan need to be more consistent in the playoffs.
Boyle and Pyatt need to do better in the regular season.
Richards, Kreider, and Del Zotto need to improve upon last year's performance in general.
Everything you said.
Boyle's a big one. People hate him, but he's a big piece for our PK and he's excellent for our fourth line. If he can get to scoring 25-30, which he is capable of doing, our 4th line is going to be the least of our worries. I wish he would get more of a nasty streak in him.
Obviously Richards needs to show some life again becase sather is taking a huge risk by not buying him out. I agree that Kreider and MDZ need to have big years. i do belive Kreider will have a good year now that torts is gone and the way he played in Boston will carry over. MDZ will be playing for another contract so i think he will have a better year as well especially on the PP hopefully
I think it is Pretty simple and goes something like this:
After we now sign Stepan, Hagelin, Falk and Zuccarello (likely) we will still (with a 24 man roster plus possible camp promotions minus waivers/trades) have 14 players that are up for new contacts next year. That ought to be the biggest motivator of all and it might just be a good reason to expect surprising stellar years from a large part of the roster. On second thought, this reasoning could backfire totally given the mystery that surrounds this teams historical development and frustration for its fanbase throughout decades of suffer.
but i think there are a few more to varying degrees. even Hank, in the playoffs especially, seemed to let in a few more softies than usual. but with that said, he seems to be the most competitive one on the team, so im the least worried about him.
Why does everyone ***** about MDZ on here. Give him a break. He makes mistakes but he's a good top 4 dman.
So many people act like he's trash....
if that wasnt directed at me, this isnt directed at you but i feel DZ is a key Dman on our team. him and J Moore, to a lesser extent. if they are on their games and playing well, our defense is pretty darn respectable. when they are off their games, our D seems alot less solid.
i guess what im trying to say is DZs success or failure at his position is pivotal to our success and perception of depth on D.
ive never trashed DZ, ive never called him DelZaster and im not in the party that wants him moved unless an awesome deal comes our way.
The OMGZGUISE answer: Richards
The omg guys answer: Kreider, Nash, Del Zotto
Considering the phrasing of the question along with reasons (external or internal) pertaining to the players' inability to meet the standards or exceed the standards and how that's going to change: Hagelin, Pyatt.
I have high expectations for Del Zotto and even Richards heading into the season so they don't have to exceed expectations, by all means.
But okay, I will step off the elevated horse and answer the question.... Nash. We need Nash to do what he was meant to do. Our bottom 6 (even considering AV's top 9 philosophy) is apparently getting a lot of help this off-season but our offensive guys need to step up. Nash needs to be Nash and make everyone around him better. He can definitely allow time and space for other players when he's charging ahead offensively and he needs to do that in order for top guys to have success. Nash needs to be a 90 point player and play like it in the PO for us to go anywhere.