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February - The Real Test (Failed)

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01-26-2011, 11:04 PM
  #1
HockeyBasedNYC
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February - The Real Test (Failed)

Fortunate for the Rangers, they only have 6 games until mid-February. (the 17th) That's 16 off days over the next 22 including today. That should get them rested and healthy.

But it's also not the time for a sloppy and lethargic month. They managed to stay afloat with a good 7-6-1 January, but now that they'll be getting reinforcements back, they'll really need to bear down and get some wins to improve their position in the East.

Only 12 games on the slate for February. The games are spread out with only one back-to-back.

Compare that to 17 in November and 14 in a shortened January. The Rangers had similar spaced 12 game calendar in December and had a great month going 8-3-1.

But unlike that month, they don't have the Islanders 3 times;

PENS
DEVILS
HABS
WINGS
THRASHERS
PENS
KINGS
DEVILS
FLYERS
CANES
CAPS
LIGHTNING


Thats 8 playoff teams folks, and the Canes who are right on the door knocking. Combined record against these teams is 9-11-2. Take away the 3 wins against what was a different Devils team and you have a pretty bad record.

It's time to really step up and make these games count going down the stretch. There will only be 18 games remaining in the season after this short month. If the Rangers have any aspirations of hosting a playoff series, this is the month to make a case.

This team has played incredibly hard, has bought into Torts' culture and system of play... but is it all smoke and mirrors? The Rangers averaged just over 2 goals per game in the month of January, and while they gutted out wins using a stiff defensive posture, they'll need to get that goal average up over 3 like in December if they want to win games against teams like Tampa, Philly and Detroit.

We'll see how it shakes out. Lundqvist will have to be at his best. 7-4-1 would be a realistic goal to shoot for.


Last edited by HockeyBasedNYC: 01-26-2011 at 11:22 PM.
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Old
01-27-2011, 12:04 AM
  #2
gravytrain6t
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I hope Gaborik goes on an absolute tear in the second half. IDC if that means making a trade with the Caps to bring Nylander back...But seriously, I know he's not the Captain but I look for this guy to not allow for the Rangers to miss the playoffs 2 years in a row. Because if the Rangers do miss the playoffs, it will be because of pesky teams like the Thrashers or the Hurricanes (And they're coming on real strong now with a lot of offensive talent. Skinner has been great but the real key (imo) was getting Cole back. He's a power forward who had injury set backs but in my mind, when healthy, he's one of the best pf's in the game).

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01-27-2011, 12:21 AM
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Penguins- w
Devils- w
@Canadiens- l
@Red Wings- l
@Thrashers- w
Penguins- l
Kings- otl
@Devils- otl
Flyers- w
@Hurricanes- w
@Capitals- l
Lightning- w


6-4-2

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01-27-2011, 01:13 AM
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Pens - W
Devils - Otl
Habs - L
Wings - L
Thrashers - W
Pens - L
Kings - W
Devils - W
Flyers - L
Canes - W
Caps - W
Lightning - Otl

6-4-2

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01-27-2011, 02:04 AM
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Ail
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Twelve game win streak.

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01-27-2011, 02:56 AM
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Wraparounds
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Originally Posted by DrurysWeekend View Post
Twelve game win streak.
Blasphemer.

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01-27-2011, 04:31 AM
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Hoping for another December here! A 12 game winning streak wouldn't be so bad either.

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Old
01-27-2011, 05:54 AM
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I diagree that this month is the real test. We have a lot of guys coming back from extended injury breaks meaning they won't just be full go as soon as they come back. May not be til the end of the month thast cally, dubs, possibly prospal are fully healthy. This team won't be at full strength for awhile so I personally wouldn't hold it against them if they only win 5 games this month. Realistically I think they will go something like 5-6-1, 4-7-1.

If this team was healthy than yes this would be the real test.

Although I think a certain way with how good this team has been I actually do expect them to somehow go 6-4-2 or something. But if I was using my head not my heart

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01-27-2011, 06:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DrurysWeekend View Post
Twelve game win streak.
That's the spirit!

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01-27-2011, 06:15 AM
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Pens - L
Devils - W
Habs - L
Wings - L
Thrashers - W
Pens - L
Kings - W
Devils - W
Flyers - L
Canes - L
Caps - W
Lightning - W


6-6

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01-27-2011, 07:13 AM
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both West games are gonna be extremely tough, definitely. Flyers, too. i think we could also go 1-1 vs Pittsburgh. otherwise, we should be alright, i think. come out just over .500 and get a sick burst of energy from Callahan.

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Old
01-27-2011, 08:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HockeyBasedNYC View Post
This team has played incredibly hard, has bought into Torts' culture and system of play... but is it all smoke and mirrors?
It is going to be a test for sure. Even the best post-lockout teams backed their way into the playoffs every year until they finally backed on out under Torts. That's a part of the former Ranger culture that has yet to be broken.

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01-27-2011, 10:08 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Melrose_Jr. View Post
It is going to be a test for sure. Even the best post-lockout teams backed their way into the playoffs every year until they finally backed on out under Torts. That's a part of the former Ranger culture that has yet to be broken.
Thats why I feel this month is so important. If they want to solidify a spot and then think about home ice, this is the time to do it and not just hover around as a high bubble team.

Its not going to be easy because some of those teams have more talent and flat out better rosters. But nows the time to break that trend if they intend to.

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01-27-2011, 10:36 AM
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Gardner McKay
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Melrose_Jr. View Post
It is going to be a test for sure. Even the best post-lockout teams backed their way into the playoffs every year until they finally backed on out under Torts. That's a part of the former Ranger culture that has yet to be broken.
And may not be broken this year simply because of injuries. If this team was healthy the whole year, considering their consistent play and effort there is no reason to think they would not have solidified a spot earlier than the past few years.

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01-27-2011, 11:15 AM
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This is a tough month schedule-wise, we certainly don't have much of a cushion over the 8th and 9th place squads, and the month leads right up to the trade deadline at the end.

We will know an awful lot about the plight of this team by the end of the month. That is certain.

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01-27-2011, 11:22 AM
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5-7-0 at worse 7-5-0 at best. Some OTL could be in between taking away from wins. I dont think we can get through Feb with less than 5 losses in regulation.

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01-27-2011, 12:20 PM
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vs PIT - W
vs NJD - W
@ MTL - OTL
@ DET - OTL
@ ATL - W
vs PIT - L
vs LAK - W
@ NJD - W
vs PHI - L
@ CAR - OTL
@ WSH - W
vs TBL - L

6-3-3

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01-27-2011, 12:21 PM
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I'm terrible with these, but I would be content with 12 points this month. Anything above that would be a bonus and anything below it could be a problem.

We'd be at 73 points with 64 GP and 18 to go.

That means we'd only have to go .500 in the last 18 to get 91 points.

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01-27-2011, 12:23 PM
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HockeyBasedNYC
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loffen View Post
vs PIT - W
vs NJD - W
@ MTL - OTL
@ DET - OTL
@ ATL - W
vs PIT - L
vs LAK - W
@ NJD - W
vs PHI - L
@ CAR - OTL
@ WSH - W
vs TBL - L

6-3-3
15 out of a possible 24 points? I'd sign up for that right now. Same as going 7-4-1.

You see thats what i'd like to see this team do, if you arent winning at least grab a point or have a chance to grab two in the OT or shootout.

The Rangers have a lot of wins, but they also have a lot of reg. losses for a team that high in the standings. 3 OTL is the lowest total in the conference and at the very bottom of the league. Good teams find a way to grab points.

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01-27-2011, 12:30 PM
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Originally Posted by HockeyBasedNYC View Post
15 out of a possible 24 points? I'd sign up for that right now. Same as going 7-4-1.
Oh yeah.

Getting Cally back should help us somewhat. Keep focusing on the defensive game and we have proven that we can keep up with the best of 'em in the league, even with half of our regular forwards out with injuries.

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01-27-2011, 12:32 PM
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Any variation of wins and losses that gets us to 6-4-2 is a record I will gladly take.

March OTOH is a moth where we have our real test to see if we can create some seperation from the rest of the non-PO teams.

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01-27-2011, 12:37 PM
  #22
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I think we'll end up with 7 regulation wins and split the rest between L and OTL. I'd say more because we've risen to the occasion to beat better teams, but we've also lost to worse teams so you never know.

How's the schedule for ATL and the Canes?

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01-27-2011, 02:44 PM
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I'd love 16 points. I know that's 8 wins, or 6-2-4, but that would go a looooong way. Hopefully 2 wins over the Pens, as well, which would bring us closer towards home ice.

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01-27-2011, 03:02 PM
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HockeyBasedNYC
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February:

Atlanta:

11 Games; with no back-to-back sets. Light on games, but a long(ish) road trip at the end of the month. Relatively easy schedule as far as strength of opponent goes. Only 2 games against playoff teams (but 2 against the Canes).


Isles
Calgary
@ Canes
@ Leafs
Rangers
Canes
@ Yotes
@ Oilers
@ Buffalo
Panthers
Leafs


--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Carolina:

13 Games; 3 back-to-back sets, Much harder schedule then the Thrashers including a jammed 5 game, 9-day road trip. Games against 9 playoff teams but they play the Devils (who they are notorious for beating) 3 times:

Bruins
@Leafs
Atlanta
@ Devils
@ Philly
@ Tampa
@ Atlanta
@ Devils
Philly
Devils
Rangers
Pittsburgh
@Montreal


--------------------------------------------------------------------------
Montreal:

13 Games; 2 back-to-back sets. Also featuring a west-coast swing which includes the Heritage Classic against the Flames on the 20th. Only 4 games against current playoff teams, with some really easy competition in the middle of the month after playing Boston.

@Washington
Florida
Rangers
Jersey
@ Boston
Islanders
Leafs
Sabres
@ Edmonton
@ Calgary (Heritage Game)
@ Vancouver
Leafs
Carolina


--------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Rangers probably have the toughest or second toughest (Carolina) schedule out of all of these teams. That long road trip for Carolina is going to be a big deal for them one way or another.


Last edited by HockeyBasedNYC: 01-27-2011 at 03:10 PM.
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Old
01-27-2011, 03:06 PM
  #25
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Ugh.

Here's hoping they choke against easy opponents and get destroyed by good ones.

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