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Who needs to surpass expectations next season for the team to be better?

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Old
07-10-2013, 03:24 AM
  #26
Kane One
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Richards, Kreider, and Nash. I'd also love to see Staal return as the #1 d-man.

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07-10-2013, 03:59 AM
  #27
JeffMangum
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCrusty View Post
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.
That's generally been one of the biggest critiques of Nash's game throughout his entire career. It really isn't his game. He's a goal scorer, and on top of his game, a very good possession player. He'll show flashes of great creative ability in terms of setting up other players, but, for the most part, he'll hang onto to the puck and try to go to the net himself. He's also more dangerous off the rush.

I do think he showed more flashes of that last year than any time I watched the Blue Jackets. His game seemed to drop in that facet after sustaining a concussion from Lucic. His goal scoring game jumped up after that, though, so it seemed like a bit of a tradeoff.

Long story short, Nash's game is to score goals. He did that last year, and I thought his playmaking was good, too. Playoffs are a different story. I actually thought he was better than most here did. He had a dreadful 2.2 shot %, and it's not as if he wasn't getting chances —*he was. He got shut down by Holtby numerous times in the Caps series, specifically. He does need to be better next playoffs, though, I agree there. If you're saying he needs to improve on his regular season performance, I'll have to disagree there. He had a terrific regular season, IMO. He and Stepan were the only consistence scoring threats. If you're expecting 90 points, you're going to be disappointed. I do expect him to put up 75-80 points, though, and that's fine by me. Perhaps AV can get him to put it all together like he did for the Sedins, but, as I said, don't expect it to happen.

To answer the topic's question, I'd say Brassard, Richards, one (or both) of Hagelin/Kreider, and Del Zotto. The Rangers need one of their young forwards to step up and firmly grab onto a top-6 role.

Hagelin has improved each season, and although many like to think of him as an ideal third liner (including myself, at times), I will say that I think he has second line ability and potential. The offensive side of his game is underrated. He doesn't have great hands or a great shot, but he's a smart player who creates a ton of offense with his speed and hustle, and has enough offensive skill to be dangerous in the offensive zone. While I don't think either his shot/hands are great, I still think they're top-6 caliber. Hagelin has shown flashes of being able to snipe, I'd like to see him use his slapshot more.

Kreider needs to carry over his success from towards the end of the playoffs and be the player he can be. He needs to get in on the forecheck, wreak havoc, create chances, and get into good shooting position. He needs to stop over-thinking it on the ice. I'm not going to solely blame Tortorella for his issues, but I definitely don't think he did much to help him. Kreider's the kind of player who needs to go out on the ice and play his game. I'm hoping AV will put him in a position to do that (for those who want to compare Kassian to Kreider, A) Kassian was playing injured, back problem, I believe, and B) Kreider does not have nearly the motivation issues/lack of drive that Kassian tends to suffer from).

Richards just needs to rebound. Even though he was relatively productive, it didn't reflect his play on the ice. I thought he was making the players on his line worse, and Richards' game has been focused on making the players around him more dangerous. Despite the struggles, he still showed some flashes and ended the season strongly (albeit, in an incredibly flukey way). He needs to work his ass off at the gym, get his endurance up, and come into camp wanting to prove everyone wrong. I wanted to buy him out, but I don't think he's done just yet. If he can rebound, it would be a HUGE piece of the puzzle towards making this team better.

Del Zotto needs to be more consistent, but he'll get a bit of a pass from me as he was playing with a sports hernia. Hernias are no joke, they're a very restrictive injury. Affects the core of the body, which would make any player look like he's skating in mud. I thought DZ had some great stretches during the season, especially early on. And, despite everyone taking to making him their scapegoat, he was still the highest scoring defender on the team and was on pace for a dab under 40 points.

As for Brassard, he needs to carry over his play from down the stretch and in the playoffs. Talking about players who make their linemates better, Brassard is that type of player, and he did just that with the Rangers. I don't think this was just post-trade adrenaline, either. Generally, that lasts 4-5 games. Look at Gaborik. Had something like 3 goals and 2 assists in his first 5 games with Columbus, and then he put up a dud the rest of the way. Brassard was fantastic for 25 games. He just needs to continue to work hard and dig for loose pucks like he was with the Rangers, and the point swill come. A skilled guy who was working as hard as he was isn't going to walk away unrewarded.

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07-10-2013, 04:08 AM
  #28
Kane One
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Whoa, great post.


There's a lack of Staal in this thread, though. He's been hurt the past two seasons. McDonagh has been awesome in his absence and I think it made people forget how good Staal was. We managed to be first in the east with Staal out for half of the year. If McDonagh could continue to be McDonagh, Girardi has a better year, and Staal comes back in A shape and comfortable with the visor, that would really be incredible.

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07-10-2013, 04:27 AM
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Parker McDonald View Post
Richards, Kreider, and Nash. I'd also love to see Staal return as the #1 d-man.
Such a McDonagh hater. I can't believe this.

I keep insisting that in the absence of Staal, people have forgotten that this man used to be the only person that shows up every night aside from Lundqvist. McDonagh carries the rising star title while Staal has been the injured player who will never return to form... I mean, any time you get swap an injured player into the lineup as #2 and push the depth downward and improve all 3 pairing by default, it's a huge plus. Staal under AV will be interesting. He's always been the most.... decisive defenseman we've had and that will help.

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07-10-2013, 04:29 AM
  #30
Kane One
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCrusty View Post
Such a McDonagh hater. I can't believe this.
Nah, I don't care if Stralman is the best defenseman on the Rangers, as long as it means everyone else stayed the same or got better as well.

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07-10-2013, 04:41 AM
  #31
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I think it comes down to Staal, McD and Girardi.

We have had a D who for three years more or less has just slapped the puck up ice without any plan. We have not added any PMDs during the regular season.

Our best Ds got a great task infront of them if we are goin to succeed at getting not just an offensive game but any kind of game. With Torts we played in two steps: 1) Get the puck below the hash marks and out of our own end ASAP and then 2) take it to the net. We more or less never had any though behind plays designed to take the puck to the net from our own end.

However, that's exactly what all good teams are really good at today. They have set plays that takes the puck from the neutralzone to the net, not behind it.

To play that game, our Ds needs to be able to make those passes. And especially to make the right decisions. When should they make a Torts play? When should they seek to get away from the forechecker to make that pass up center ice? When should they go D to D? And so forth. It's that process that is hard to pinn down. D partners needs to know each other, know what the guy next to him is doing. Ds needs to know their wingers. The centers needs to know their Ds.

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07-10-2013, 05:33 AM
  #32
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I think everyone just needs to play up to their (realistic) potential.

The only people I can envisage having a 'breakout' season would be a rookie producing 40+ pts or Brassard getting 60+

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07-10-2013, 05:54 AM
  #33
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Kreider doesn't need to surpass expectations. He just needs to actually play up to expectations

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07-10-2013, 06:19 AM
  #34
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Nash, Richards, Callahan, Hags, Del Zotto, Boyle, and the PP

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07-10-2013, 07:05 AM
  #35
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Who is playing for contracts? UFA's to be after next year:--Henrik Lundqvist, Ryan Callahan, Dan Girardi, Brian Boyle, Anton Stralman--these guys all have incentive to kick it up a notch.

Richards is fighting for his career here. We'll see how he does but to be honest I don't think he's going to be much better than last year and if the Rangers are going to sign some of the above they are going to need a lot of money to get Henrik and Callahan and Staal the year after to sign long term deals. And then there's Girardi and Brassard and what happens with Stepan now. How much money do we spend on these guys?--another reason why Richards should be dumped because if we don't were probably moving other core players. A lot of Rangers players moving into their prime years now and further away from the cheaper ELC's.

Kreider has to prove himself.

Del Zotto has to prove he's a legitimate pwp quarterback. 40-45 points is not enough. Our Pwp has to be better and he needs to be the guy running it. He needs to get over the 50 point barrier anyway and still at least play decent defense.

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07-10-2013, 08:03 AM
  #36
iamitter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by eco's bones View Post
Who is playing for contracts? UFA's to be after next year:--Henrik Lundqvist, Ryan Callahan, Dan Girardi, Brian Boyle, Anton Stralman--these guys all have incentive to kick it up a notch.

Richards is fighting for his career here. We'll see how he does but to be honest I don't think he's going to be much better than last year and if the Rangers are going to sign some of the above they are going to need a lot of money to get Henrik and Callahan and Staal the year after to sign long term deals. And then there's Girardi and Brassard and what happens with Stepan now. How much money do we spend on these guys?--another reason why Richards should be dumped because if we don't were probably moving other core players. A lot of Rangers players moving into their prime years now and further away from the cheaper ELC's.

Kreider has to prove himself.

Del Zotto has to prove he's a legitimate pwp quarterback. 40-45 points is not enough. Our Pwp has to be better and he needs to be the guy running it. He needs to get over the 50 point barrier anyway and still at least play decent defense.
The list of defenseman with more than 50 points in 2011-2012:
Karlsson
Byfuglien
Campbell
Chara
Pietrangelo

You're asking a lot of the kid.

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07-10-2013, 01:17 PM
  #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JCrusty View Post
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.
But Nash ISN'T a 90 point player... that's the thing. The obvious (and correct) answer IS Brad Richards. He needs to put up at least 60 points and this team will be in good shape. It would be nice to see Hags take a step forward offensively as well.

Step, Brass just need to keep at the level they were playing last season... which is obviously easier said than done.

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