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It's time to put Richards and Gaborik together

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Old
02-08-2012, 11:10 AM
  #26
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Richards looked solid on the point when he was put there late in the game last night. I cant remember the last time hes been there 5 on 4. It was the first powerplay they've had in a while that had any life.

When people start understanding thats where Richards has made his living over the better part of a decade, the less they'll clamor for putting Richards and Gaborik together at even strength.

The fact he hasnt been back there for so long is probably the biggest problem I have with Torts. Leave him back there, watch the PP improve, and watch Richards start picking up points.

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02-08-2012, 11:36 AM
  #27
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Feds-Richards-Rupp is the line at practice today. I could name about twenty different Richards combination lines i'd rather see.

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02-08-2012, 11:40 AM
  #28
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Torts is quicker to change lines than Keenan was to pull a goalie and that's fast.

Good lines and good chemistry develope when they are allowed to work out of their own funk.

Torts has not allowed that to happen.

He needs to trust his players that they will work out of the funks they get into

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02-08-2012, 11:55 AM
  #29
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Originally Posted by pld459666 View Post
Torts is quicker to change lines than Keenan was to pull a goalie and that's fast.

Good lines and good chemistry develope when they are allowed to work out of their own funk.

Torts has not allowed that to happen.

He needs to trust his players that they will work out of the funks they get into
It appears it is becoming more about Torts than the team! I agree Trust your players. He started to change things during our last win streak for no apparent reason........he can not and will not leave alone......I fear Torts will blow this for the guys!

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02-08-2012, 12:04 PM
  #30
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Highly disappointed with Richards' play in last night's game... If he's not nursing an injury than I seriously have concerns about why his skating looks so labored and why he looks to be a step behind the play out on the ice. I'm not jumping the gun but if this is at all related to him getting older, than we're in for a bumpy ride with this contract. He looks like he's skating in mud and he has not been strong at winning battles for the puck.

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02-08-2012, 12:26 PM
  #31
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How sad........! this is the best Torts can come up with?

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02-08-2012, 12:31 PM
  #32
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Since a 7 game point streak from Nov. 25th-Dec. 8th, Brad Richards has 10 points (6G, 4A) in the last 26 games. Including only 1 multi-point game. That's .38 points per game during that stretch, WELL BELOW his career average of .91 PPG.

We need to get more out of Richards.

I think it's time Torts puts him with Gaborik and keeps it that way for a few games. None of this "Oh it's not working after 2 shifts, time to switch it up" crap

Torts has been reluctant to split Gaborik-Stepan all season. Yes, they just had a big game on Sunday together but we're getting zilch out of Richards on the other lines. He doesn't have a true sniper to play with. He hasn't consistently clicked offensively with anyone, really. Not in any way that has produced goals on a regular basis.

We signed Richards to be our #1 center and an offensive catalyst. Torts needs to quit being so damn stubborn with him and STOP PLAYING HIM WITH RUPP, PRUST, FEDOTENKO, etc.

The "let me play him with grinders to help get him going" approach HAS NOT WORKED. It's time to scrap it. He's totally being misused.

Richards and Gaborik are the two offensive stars of the team. Put them out there together, leave them alone and let them FIGURE IT OUT themselves. I feel like he squashed the whole idea early in training camp and has never gone back to it other than the odd shift here or there. Never has started a game with them as a line nor even put them together in a 3rd period when we were struggling to score, like tonight.

I just don't get it. He's here for another 8 years. We NEED Gaborik and Richards to be able to play together.

The LW on their line could be Hagelin or even Anisimov or Dubinsky. Heck, I'd also be willing to try Stepan on the LW with Richards and Gaborik, and you can put Anisimov back at center and reunite him with Callahan and Dubinsky.

My biggest criticism of Torts this season is that he's so set in his ways, he's not willing to "think outside the box" like this.

Yes, we have been winning, we're 1st in the league and I understand the "if it's not broke, don't fix it" argument.

But before Sunday's 5 goal outburst, we went something like 14 straight games with 3 goals or fewer. Sunday's 5 goal effort was followed by being shutout tonight. We are 1st in the league in goals against. If we can get the offense jump started and the lines clicking, we'll be SO MUCH better than we are right now.

IMO, everything fits so much better from Line 1 to Line 4 if Richards and Gaborik can be a duo on the top line.
This is a well thought out post and I and most fans agree with you 100%.

Look, I love Torts and I honestly believe sometimes that all our success thus far this season has been as a result of all the players "buying in" to his system and refusing to quit or be outworked because he won't tolerate it.

But the truth is we are so offensively challenged that it is time for Torts to stop being so obstinate about his line combinations and just put Gabby and Richards together for a while and let them work out the games together.

I also believe that Richards definitely needs to be on the point on the powerplay as well.

As the season drags on, time and space is going to become less and less and that will pose big issues for all teams especially one like ours that is so offensively challenged.

Nice job dude!

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Old
02-08-2012, 12:39 PM
  #33
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Originally Posted by wolfgaze View Post
Highly disappointed with Richards' play in last night's game... If he's not nursing an injury than I seriously have concerns about why his skating looks so labored and why he looks to be a step behind the play out on the ice. I'm not jumping the gun but if this is at all related to him getting older, than we're in for a bumpy ride with this contract. He looks like he's skating in mud and he has not been strong at winning battles for the puck.
completely agree. ive watched him closely and early on he always seemed to be doing his own thing however at this point it seems as if he simply is hurt or worn down maybe both. He is consistantly 2 steps behind the play, late on back checks, late getting into the play, something is off with him and it doesnt ahve anything to do with who is is or isnt playing with. THeres a reason why he is one of only two everyday players with a minus next to his name, the other being fedotenko. The common denominator? 2 steps behind the play at all times. They both need to sit.

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02-08-2012, 12:45 PM
  #34
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Originally Posted by Drewbackatu View Post
This is a well thought out post and I and most fans agree with you 100%.

Look, I love Torts and I honestly believe sometimes that all our success thus far this season has been as a result of all the players "buying in" to his system and refusing to quit or be outworked because he won't tolerate it.

But the truth is we are so offensively challenged that it is time for Torts to stop being so obstinate about his line combinations and just put Gabby and Richards together for a while and let them work out the games together.

I also believe that Richards definitely needs to be on the point on the powerplay as well.

As the season drags on, time and space is going to become less and less and that will pose big issues for all teams especially one like ours that is so offensively challenged.

Nice job dude!
Myth. We're 13th in goals per game. You can't seriously insist that almost 2/3rds of the league is offensively challenged...

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Old
02-08-2012, 12:46 PM
  #35
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Originally Posted by GeorgeHamiltonsTan View Post
completely agree. ive watched him closely and early on he always seemed to be doing his own thing however at this point it seems as if he simply is hurt or worn down maybe both. He is consistantly 2 steps behind the play, late on back checks, late getting into the play, something is off with him and it doesnt ahve anything to do with who is is or isnt playing with. THeres a reason why he is one of only two everyday players with a minus next to his name, the other being fedotenko. The common denominator? 2 steps behind the play at all times. They both need to sit.
No offense, but I think you guys are seeing things and/or just trying to justify a player thats in a major slump right now. If you've watched Richards throughout his career, hes never been fast. Hes never ever been noticeable in that way. I dont think hes any slower than normal.

Whats also apparent over his career is hes got exceptional vision, which is being wasted at even strength with guys like Rupp, Prust, Mitchell, Feds, etc. But, more importantly, about 30-40% of his point production over the course of his career has come on the powerplay. If we had a PP that didnt drool over itself everytime out, his numbers would be around his career average.

Now, is he part of that problem? Sure. But Torts' refusal to play him regularly on the point with the man advantage in an attempt to boost that PP AND give Richards some much-needed confidence is a bonehead move. He put him there late in the game last night, and we had the best man advantage this teams had in a month. Keep him there.

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Old
02-08-2012, 12:48 PM
  #36
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What I don't understand is why we haven't replaced mitchell with MZA yet. Mitchell is a nice 13th fwd but has no offensive skill, I'd like to see something like.
Stepan-Richards-gaborik
Dubinsky-anisimov-Callahan
Hagelin-Boyle-MZA
Feds-rupp-prust

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Old
02-08-2012, 12:49 PM
  #37
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Originally Posted by GeorgeHamiltonsTan View Post
completely agree. ive watched him closely and early on he always seemed to be doing his own thing however at this point it seems as if he simply is hurt or worn down maybe both. He is consistantly 2 steps behind the play, late on back checks, late getting into the play, something is off with him and it doesnt ahve anything to do with who is is or isnt playing with. THeres a reason why he is one of only two everyday players with a minus next to his name, the other being fedotenko. The common denominator? 2 steps behind the play at all times. They both need to sit.
Richards has never been known for his skating or his defense.

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02-08-2012, 12:57 PM
  #38
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Originally Posted by Bleed Ranger Blue View Post
No offense, but I think you guys are seeing things and/or just trying to justify a player thats in a major slump right now. If you've watched Richards throughout his career, hes never been fast. Hes never ever been noticeable in that way. I dont think hes any slower than normal.

Whats also apparent over his career is hes got exceptional vision, which is being wasted at even strength with guys like Rupp, Prust, Mitchell, Feds, etc. But, more importantly, about 30-40% of his point production over the course of his career has come on the powerplay. If we had a PP that didnt drool over itself everytime out, his numbers would be around his career average.

Now, is he part of that problem? Sure. But Torts' refusal to play him regularly on the point with the man advantage in an attempt to boost that PP AND give Richards some much-needed confidence is a bonehead move. He put him there late in the game last night, and we had the best man advantage this teams had in a month. Keep him there.
ding ding ding ding. Thats the biggest reason right there. 40% of his career points have come on the PP. Hes actually getting more points this season even strength than normal (though only slightly).

Obviously he could be playing better and is part of the problem but its much bigger than him.

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02-08-2012, 01:01 PM
  #39
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Avery-Richards-Gaborik

Get it done, Torts!

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Old
02-08-2012, 01:09 PM
  #40
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Originally Posted by Kel Varnsen View Post
Myth. We're 13th in goals per game. You can't seriously insist that almost 2/3rds of the league is offensively challenged...
Agreed, although it has seemed like the Rangers haven't been doing as well offensively lately. The main reason is Brad Richards' troubles (and of course the PP).

Since January 6, Richards has played in 12 games and only has 3 points (1g, 2a). In that time, the Rangers have scored more than 2 goals in half (6) of those games. Three of those games were games in which Richards had a point. Therefore, in the 9 pointless games, the Rangers only have 3 games with 3 or more goals.

In fact, the Rangers have had 6 games in the entire season where Richards had a point and they scored less than 3 goals. Three of those games were the first three games of the season.

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02-08-2012, 01:17 PM
  #41
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Originally Posted by Bleed Ranger Blue View Post
No offense, but I think you guys are seeing things and/or just trying to justify a player thats in a major slump right now. If you've watched Richards throughout his career, hes never been fast. Hes never ever been noticeable in that way. I dont think hes any slower than normal.
He looks noticeably slower than he did the first 2 months of the season. The other forwards on the team seem to be holding up fine in terms of skating & stamina. You are not noticing this? I am watching him struggle to get back into the play and pick up his man through the neutral zone as well. He's also not battling very hard in the corners to win one-on-one battles for the puck. Was that his M.O. on previous teams as well? I see a much different player right now than I did at the start of the season. He's not skating hard or playing with any urgency in his game. He reminds me of Gaborik last season (at times), not moving his feet. I want to know if there's an injury involved or if he's simply getting older and his stamina & speed are subsequently reduced. If the issue is the latter, I'm highly concerned.

My cocerns have a lot less to do with his overall point production than they do with his game-to-game effectiveness. If the effort is there and there's no points, I'm fine with that.

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02-08-2012, 01:23 PM
  #42
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Originally Posted by DubiSnacks17 View Post
Agreed, although it has seemed like the Rangers haven't been doing as well offensively lately. The main reason is Brad Richards' troubles (and of course the PP).

Since January 6, Richards has played in 12 games and only has 3 points (1g, 2a). In that time, the Rangers have scored more than 2 goals in half (6) of those games. Three of those games were games in which Richards had a point. Therefore, in the 9 pointless games, the Rangers only have 3 games with 3 or more goals.

In fact, the Rangers have had 6 games in the entire season where Richards had a point and they scored less than 3 goals. Three of those games were the first three games of the season.

Richards has been a clutch player there's no doubt about that but history shows that in Tampa and Dallas he's had better line mates then here in Ny. This guy has some serious confidence issues it seems and maybe a guy like gaborik 5 on 5 is what he needs to regain that. If we had even a decent power play we would run away with the conference.
PP unit should be

MZA-Stepan-Gaborik
MDZ-Richards

(scratch or send down Mitchell to make room for MZA) this team only lacks skill IMO and if they can get the PP going we're golden

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02-08-2012, 01:29 PM
  #43
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Rupp-Richards-Prust should work

In all seriousness

Hags-Richards-Gabby
Dubi-Stepan-Callahan
Fedotenko-Anisimov-Mitchell
Prust-Boyle-Rupp

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02-08-2012, 01:30 PM
  #44
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Originally Posted by Kel Varnsen View Post
Myth. We're 13th in goals per game. You can't seriously insist that almost 2/3rds of the league is offensively challenged...
They were scoring more goals the 1st half of the season. Before Jan 1st they were averaging 3 goals a game. Since than they are averaging 2.2. If they keep that pace they'll have 210 goals for the season which last season would have put them around 24th in the league.

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02-08-2012, 01:35 PM
  #45
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Richards = #1 C
Gaborik = #1 W

Separating them is monumentally MORONIC! One is an elite playmaker, one is an elite sniper. They should be forced to create chemistry, they get paid enough to do it. Just cycle in a 3rd linemate that can get them open more often to work their magic and then keep the #*(!#*(!@#U&*@$&(@# line together!

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02-08-2012, 01:35 PM
  #46
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Originally Posted by Dadude View Post
Rupp-Richards-Prust should work

In all seriousness

Hags-Richards-Gabby
Dubi-Stepan-Callahan
Fedotenko-Anisimov-Mitchell
Prust-Boyle-Rupp
I would give that a try. Richards needs to be with Gaborik and maybe with Hagelin on that line (who likes to shoot) he just send them the puck and let them use their speed to gain the zone and try and get something going. Only problem is noone to go to the net or retrieve pucks from the corner.

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02-08-2012, 01:57 PM
  #47
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It appears it is becoming more about Torts than the team! I agree Trust your players. He started to change things during our last win streak for no apparent reason........he can not and will not leave alone......I fear Torts will blow this for the guys!
He has left it alone - when the team was doing very well. How quickly people forget. Torts for Adams! Fire torts! Its insane how bipolar this board can be about the coach.

Bottom line, he's coaching a team that is first in the East. He knows what he's doing and he's doing it well. He won't "blow it for them" as he is one of "them" and he is every bit as invested in the team's success as the players are.

It's one thing to question a professional NHL coach when his team is struggling to compete. That is not this team. A handful of frustrating games don't make a season or a coach. First in the east. Tied for second in the league. He's doing just fine.

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Old
02-08-2012, 02:01 PM
  #48
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I hate this strategy. It's exactly what DeBoer does with Parise and Kovalchuk.

The problem is, against teams with an elite #1/#2 D-pairing, they line match, and can shut down BOTH of your superstars.

Yes, sometimes Parise and Kovalchuk have an explosive game, but if not, then it's really putting pressure on your 2nd and 3rd lines. I'd rather spread the O-talent around, which is what Torts seems to believe.

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02-08-2012, 02:24 PM
  #49
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The **** Torts? You put Richards with Rupp and Fedotenko? How the **** is someone supposed to break out of an offensive slump playing with those two? Jesus ****ing Christ

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02-08-2012, 02:29 PM
  #50
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I don't see the sense in breaking up Stepan/Gaborik just to try and get Richards going. Those two guys have great chemistry together. Richards needs to find chemistry with someone else on the roster, or a personnel change should be made. Not to mention it's not as if Richards has been carrying his line, or generating tons of chances that his linemates can't finish. He's been very average in his playmaking ability.

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