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Old
11-28-2009, 10:01 PM
  #1
SupersonicMonkey*
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Team identity

My posts are being buried in the GDT, and i'm getting bashed by people, because they may or may not be seeing all of what i post.


This Rangers team is not talented enough to run an attack system.

Plain and simple.

They SHOULD be running a defensive system, especially while having a young defensive core (3 rookie defenseman right now).


What is happening, is Tortorella is sending third line players with minimal offensive talent, on an attack. There is no creativity with the puck.

He at the same time, wants the defensemen to jump up into the play.

This leaves the team wide open for odd man rushes against.


This would be tolerable, if they had the players to play a run-and-gun style. Similar to what the Buffalo Sabres did a few years ago.


The fact is they don't have the guys to do it, outside of Gaborik.


If they applied stingy effort in the neutral zone, applying puck support, standing up the opposition, forcing the other team to dump and turn it over, they could use what DOES make them successful on an attack. Which is using their defenseman to go back and retrieve the puck and move it quickly to the forwards.

Transition.

Shut down the neutral zone, force dump ins, transition the puck up quickly and attack when there is an opportunity.


This is what they should be doing.


Look how they get blown out lately. They're leaving themselves wide open.

They simply do not have the guys to play this way.


And my argument with Lisin vs. guys like Callahan and Higgins is this:

If you ARE going to run an attack system, then you need to put the guys with the most skill and speed on the team, on the attack.

"Lisin isn't that great"

Well, unfortunately for THAT argument, this is the roster we have!

You have to use what is available to you.

Callahan and Higgins are not going to be ANY more successful on the attack then Lisin.

Gaborik, Prospal, Lisin, Dubinsky (injured), Avery, and Anisimov give you the best CHANCE of the guys on the roster, to run that kind of attack.

Callahan and Higgins eating up more and more ice time, while not producing isn't going to change things.


Call me retarded or what ever you want, it doesn't change the fact that the team has no identity.

They, including the GM, needs to figure out what they want to accomplish.

If they want to attack, they need speed and skill.

If they want to trap, then do it.

Right now they're trying to fit square pegs into round holes.

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11-28-2009, 10:27 PM
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Visiting fan here. The Rangers seemed to run a pretty effective system against Washington last year in the playoffs.. and even this year in limited games they didn't look to me like a team running an offensive system.. I'm a bit confused..

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11-28-2009, 10:28 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by artilector View Post
Visiting fan here. The Rangers seemed to run a pretty effective system against Washington last year in the playoffs.. and even this year in limited games they didn't look to me like a team running an offensive system.. I'm a bit confused..
Our system last year was "try to get a fluke goal and hope lundqvist can steal the 1-0 game for us"

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11-28-2009, 10:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by artilector View Post
Visiting fan here. The Rangers seemed to run a pretty effective system against Washington last year in the playoffs.. and even this year in limited games they didn't look to me like a team running an offensive system.. I'm a bit confused..
Tortorella didn't fully implement "his system" until training camp this year. And then they've been forced to be somewhat conservative recently with injuries to 2 of the top 3 center icemen.

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11-28-2009, 10:31 PM
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I don't see how Lisin is more qualified to "attack" than Callahan or Higgins.

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11-28-2009, 10:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by artilector View Post
Visiting fan here. The Rangers seemed to run a pretty effective system against Washington last year in the playoffs.. and even this year in limited games they didn't look to me like a team running an offensive system.. I'm a bit confused..
You don't watch the games consistently.

Last year Tortorella kept the same game plan, basically, that Renney used.

This year, they leave themselves so susceptible. They don't have proper coverage, they have their defensemen pinching too much, they try to keep pace or try to set pace, but they lack the ability to do it successfully.

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11-28-2009, 10:39 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GothamRanger View Post
I don't see how Lisin is more qualified to "attack" than Callahan or Higgins.
Not "qualified".

He is more skilled.

His tools are better suited.

Callahan, Higgins, Drury, are guys more suited to play a neutral zone trap.

When i list line combos in the line combos threads, i always list him with forwards who are sound defensively, to make up for what ever he lacks in that.

Anisimov and Avery are more then adequate defensively to allow a player like Lisin use his speed and size to be creative.

Callahan and Higgins are more of a straight line, shoot from the outside, grinder. They aren't overly creative with the puck. And they don't have the ability to score consistently enough to leave your self wide open.

Lisin may not be a great scorer, but the point is to at least use what ever skill you do have, on the attack... if you are going to play that way.

They should be trapping, and making use of their opportunities, and forcing the other team to make mistakes.

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11-28-2009, 10:42 PM
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I've been saying that this team won't be running Torts' true system until 40-50 games in. Watch games from the Lightning's play off run, the actual play style is completely different.

I'm starting to think that this team may not have the mental capacity to run this system at all though. In it's current watered down state, they can't even follow it's most basic fundamentals.

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11-28-2009, 10:44 PM
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With a captain who could apparently care less about his offense. *Cough Drury, and a system that preaches offense.

Shouldn't the captain preach what the system preaches?

Pray to whatever you can but the prophet, our captain, is not following the religious tenets of Tortorella and preaching the system to his teammates.

He is the one who at the end of the game and when he talks to the media, drinks his metal gatorade can and doesn't single anyone out or publicly blame himself for his team's loss and not making his team keep it together.

He is in Renney land and rightfully so, because he could never be the one who could climb that mountain to reach attainment of hockey glory.

Make Gaborik, Prospal, or Callahan captain, that very well may change somethings.

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11-28-2009, 10:54 PM
  #10
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The season is not lost.

They could make changes at or before the trade deadline.

If they identify what kind of team they want to be.

What i would like, is to acquire players who have a lot of speed, and that CAN play a two way game.

Mason Raymond, Matthew Lombardi...

Very fast players, cheap cap hits, may not cost a ton in a trade.

But you can build an identity.

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11-28-2009, 10:59 PM
  #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jediprakNYR View Post
With a captain who could apparently care less about his offense. *Cough Drury, and a system that preaches offense.

Shouldn't the captain preach what the system preaches?

Pray to whatever you can but the prophet, our captain, is not following the religious tenets of Tortorella and preaching the system to his teammates.

He is the one who at the end of the game and when he talks to the media, drinks his metal gatorade can and doesn't single anyone out or publicly blame himself for his team's loss and not making his team keep it together.

He is in Renney land and rightfully so, because he could never be the one who could climb that mountain to reach attainment of hockey glory.

Make Gaborik, Prospal, or Callahan captain, that very well may change somethings.
AMEN that is sooo right. Ive been saying this forever. Right along with all the Sather rants, but this one can be a start. Were obviously not happy at all with the money this guy makes but his play on the ice, plain and simply does not back anything Captain at all up. Prospal....The enthusiasm on this mans face after he or one of his teammates he sees succeed is something you WANT on every captains face. Chris Drury is NOT a captain and should never have been on this team. Period.

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11-28-2009, 11:03 PM
  #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BleedsBlueforNYR View Post
Our system last year was "try to get a fluke goal and hope lundqvist can steal the 1-0 game for us"
Well, they did play disciplined, capitalized pretty well on Caps' errors.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Choice View Post
Tortorella didn't fully implement "his system" until training camp this year. And then they've been forced to be somewhat conservative recently with injuries to 2 of the top 3 center icemen.
Thanks, that would explain it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SupersonicMonkey View Post
You don't watch the games consistently.

Last year Tortorella kept the same game plan, basically, that Renney used.
True, I had an incomplete picture, that's why I was asking you guys.

---

My 2c, overall, I don't like Torts -- he's a morale killer, and that's especially not good when you're trying to build up a team with lots of young players. Long term I think it will be good for the Rangers to axe him.. Sather too.. although it's tricky with GMs, there are so many bad ones out there, be careful what you wish for..

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11-28-2009, 11:03 PM
  #13
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i didnt follow his championship run in tampa so i only know torts by his work in ny but i agree with the OP here . . . i dont know if he is getting the most out of the players on his roster by forcing them into a "safe is death" mentaity, especially with guys like stall who is our shut down guy (was) and, like the OP said, players that do not possess the skillset/speed necessary for what he wants to do.

what we saw in the off/preseason were some acquisitions that were tailor made for torts and his system (speed, Prospal), not to mention the emergence of two offensive dmen to supplement his system. no problems here. even kotalik is serving his purpose wonderfully.

what we see is the peg not quite the right round enough for the hole because of the bad contracts and a coach maybe too one dimensional to try another hole

still, there is hope

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11-28-2009, 11:04 PM
  #14
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I guess my big question is why?
Why are the Rangers struggling?

Going into the season I thought we had a very solid depth of talent and would be much better with out offense.

We had

Lisin-Prospal-Gaborik
Higgins-Drury-Callahan
Avery-Ansimov-Dubinsky
Brashear/Voros-Boyle-Kotalik

By my count that is 6 legitimate players who can score 20...with the potential for a 7th in Dubinsky and certainly double digits from Lisin/Avery/Ansimov.
It appeared SO loaded we actually had a logjam.

Unlike past seasons...the Rangers appeared to have a premium goal scorer...allowing the rest of the offense to be complementary.
You would think this would make the team so much better.
Not only that, but Higgins-Drury-Callahan seemed like a gritty line full of chemistry...it seemed like we had a nice balance of a primary goal scorer in Gaborik and then good depth of secondary.

The big question was...could Gaborik stay healthy.

Well not only has he stayed healthy, but he has been unreal.
As has MDZ.

So my questions

1) Why, given that Gaborik has been more than expected, do we stink? We got the BIG missing piece, a big goal scorer, and we have plenty of secondary depth. How can we be worse off with this?

2) Were would we be without Gaborik? Last in the conference?

3) Is Henrik to blame...is he overrated?

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11-28-2009, 11:05 PM
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I think Drury is mostly in a steep decline, more then anything else.

He just doesn't have it anymore.

He was on par his first two years here, in NY.

But this year, he's lost it.

I believe playing with Gaborik and Prospal may wake him up a little.

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11-28-2009, 11:08 PM
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I said the same thing elsewhere on thse boards no less than a week ago. This team lacks an identity. They need to decide, from the front-office down, what type of team they want to build for the foreseeable future and stick with it. Thats the only way to be successful. I would like to see them get bigger, faster, and meaner.

I say go after players like Neil and Horton who bring both intimidation and size respectively. Move players who dont fit into the long-term plans and go from there. Higgins, Lisin(as much as I dont like to say it), Girardi, Rozsival and attempt to start to build an identity of a hard-working in-your-face team.

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Old
11-28-2009, 11:16 PM
  #17
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Originally Posted by hockeyviper87 View Post
I said the same thing elsewhere on thse boards no less than a week ago. This team lacks an identity. They need to decide, from the front-office down, what type of team they want to build for the foreseeable future and stick with it. Thats the only way to be successful. I would like to see them get bigger, faster, and meaner.

I say go after players like Neil and Horton who bring both intimidation and size respectively. Move players who dont fit into the long-term plans and go from there. Higgins, Lisin(as much as I dont like to say it), Girardi, Rozsival and attempt to start to build an identity of a hard-working in-your-face team.
There's only one problem with that.

If you don't have skill, you won't be successful. Look at Toronto. A lot of meanies, not enough skill.

Boston last year was big, and they also had skill. Kessel, Savard, Ryder. Lucic, Wheeler.

They had a slew of 20+ goal scorers.

I think, the organization wants to move in the direction you were mentioning, however.

Anisimov, Grachev, Kreider, Werek, Dubinsky, all figure into the future plans, and all have considerable size, and skill to go with it.

With the current roster, they could at least apply a game plan that would work with this roster.

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11-28-2009, 11:17 PM
  #18
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Team Identity? Somewhere between a blind Alcoholic Salamander and the Snuggle Bear.

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11-28-2009, 11:58 PM
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Originally Posted by SupersonicMonkey View Post
I think Drury is mostly in a steep decline, more then anything else.

He just doesn't have it anymore.

He was on par his first two years here, in NY.

But this year, he's lost it.

I believe playing with Gaborik and Prospal may wake him up a little.
This team, on paper supposedly had

-A superstar goal scorer
-7 total players (5 of whom are 20+) who are solid secondary goal scorers
-A ROY candidate in MDZ
-A top goalie

Now the Bruins last season went from 8th seed to 1st...and did similarly with 1 top scorer (Kessel), a top 1A goalie (Thomas), and solid depth.
I thought we could do the same.

Gaborik has been more than expected, so why haven't we?

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11-29-2009, 12:17 AM
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Originally Posted by TheRover View Post
This team, on paper supposedly had

-A superstar goal scorer
-7 total players (5 of whom are 20+) who are solid secondary goal scorers
-A ROY candidate in MDZ
-A top goalie

Now the Bruins last season went from 8th seed to 1st...and did similarly with 1 top scorer (Kessel), a top 1A goalie (Thomas), and solid depth.
I thought we could do the same.

Gaborik has been more than expected, so why haven't we?
Who are the 7 players who are solid secondary goal scorers? Drury and Kotalik are the only secondary scorers that have consistently put up 20 goal seasons. Higgins used to be able to do it but he started regressing last season.

I think your expectations for this team may have been too high. Gaborik can't do it all by himself.

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11-29-2009, 12:56 AM
  #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TheRover View Post
I guess my big question is why?
Why are the Rangers struggling?

Going into the season I thought we had a very solid depth of talent and would be much better with out offense.

We had

Lisin-Prospal-Gaborik
Higgins-Drury-Callahan
Avery-Ansimov-Dubinsky
Brashear/Voros-Boyle-Kotalik

By my count that is 6 legitimate players who can score 20...with the potential for a 7th in Dubinsky and certainly double digits from Lisin/Avery/Ansimov.
It appeared SO loaded we actually had a logjam.

Unlike past seasons...the Rangers appeared to have a premium goal scorer...allowing the rest of the offense to be complementary.
You would think this would make the team so much better.
Not only that, but Higgins-Drury-Callahan seemed like a gritty line full of chemistry...it seemed like we had a nice balance of a primary goal scorer in Gaborik and then good depth of secondary.

The big question was...could Gaborik stay healthy.

Well not only has he stayed healthy, but he has been unreal.
As has MDZ.

So my questions

1) Why, given that Gaborik has been more than expected, do we stink? We got the BIG missing piece, a big goal scorer, and we have plenty of secondary depth. How can we be worse off with this?

2) Were would we be without Gaborik? Last in the conference?

3) Is Henrik to blame...is he overrated?
It's so funny that the complete opposite of what we were worried about is going wrong right now.

No one would've thought Hank would be mediocre, Gaborik a monster and most certainly healthy (knock on wood), two injuries to centermen at the same time which happens to be the one position we seriously lack depth in, and have virtually no secondary scoring considering the roster, and have more goals being scored by our rookie defense and defense in general than our forwards...

My my, how wrong were we.

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11-29-2009, 01:52 AM
  #22
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I'm going to make a slight modification to something I said in the summer.

At that point, I said that If Gaborik got hurt we wouldn't have the firepower to win wide open, offensive-minded games.

Now, I think that even with Gaborik we don't have the firepower to win wide open, offensive-minded games.

It's really quite astonishing to see how clueless this team has become defensively.

Everyone that kept talking about how our offense was so drastically improved in the offseason was deluding themselves:
But, but we've got so many great second liners!
But, but we have so many POTENTIAL 20 goal scorers!


I'll repeat what I said in the offseason: quantity does not equal quality. I'll never understand why people viewed the whole "interchangeable parts" thing as a positive. It's not a positive. It just means there aren't any forwards good enough to solidify their positions.

Our second line, assuming that Gaborik and Prospal stay together on the first line, is going to equal the third or fourth lines of any good teams in this league, no matter what combination it consists of.
Kotalik-Drury-Callahan? Meh.
Higgins-Dubi-Avery? Meh.
Anyone not named Gaborik or Prospal? Meh.

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Old
11-29-2009, 02:03 AM
  #23
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i was thinking this as well watching the game today. my thought was : i don't see the rangers doing anything in particular. they sometimes look to forecheck. sometimes they stickhandle. the backchecking is almost always poor.
i think the rangers have some very good pieces. i love the young defense. i don't see a problem with having all youngsters back there if the forwards are dedicated to defense. a lot of the goals and pressure by the opposition come from poor crease clearing, yes. but even more deflating is when the opponent has a fairly innocent rush turn into gold cuz the ranger forwards are gliding back.
in short, i think i agree with what a lot of you are saying. the rangers should focus more on team defense, support the young players and hope for that first line and hard work for the scoring.
stick with the kids.

(i must admit, if anyone cares, at the beginning of the season i did favor and enjoy the full-on attacking style. but i'm changing my tune. the rangers just dont have the parts).

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11-29-2009, 02:25 AM
  #24
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I really do agree accept for the Lisin part. He's got speed and that's it. As for this team, it has a ton of needs: talent, bruising defensman, secondary scoring. With or without Dubinsky this team's results will still be the same. Glen Sather has to make a move, but it will be difficult, I'd try that Higgins for Mueller swap if Phoenix is interested just to try something. The team has to get a center or top line left wing. Prospal and Gaborik work but it's clear they need a line mate, whether it's a center or left wing. Bottom line THN might be right we don't look like a playoff team.

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11-29-2009, 02:58 AM
  #25
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We lack an identity because we're a team in transition. You don't go from Renney's system to Tort's system and have things go smoothly over half a season. We have a lot of cleaning up to do on our roster to make our team fit our coach. We're trying but it's going to take time. You can't expect things to happen instantly. Hank has a solid 5-10 years left in him and same with Gaborik, should he stay healthy for that long. Those are our building blocks, along with a fantastic and young homegrown defense and some other offensive prospects that are decent. We will be contenders when we're able to take the money that was spent on Redden, Drury, and Rozi and spend it on pieces that are worth it. It was the same case last year and it's going to be the same case for the near future. Get used to it.

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