Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 08/07/14 at 06:37 AM ET
from Tal Pinchevsky of NHL.com,
How will the Rangers supplement the forward depth they lost? -- In his first year as Rangers coach, Alain Vigneault rolled all four lines and got consistent scoring from the top three units. He'll be challenged to do that again this season.
New York got key plays from Richards and Pouliot, who signed a five-year, $20 million contract with the Edmonton Oilers. A fourth line considered among the NHL's best was also dismantled when Brian Boyle signed with the Lightning and Dorsett was traded.
The Rangers hope free-agent additions Lee Stempniak, Tanner Glass, Chris Mueller and Matthew Lombardi, and some of their young talent, can help maintain that forward depth.
Can Rick Nash return to elite form? -- New York's success drew attention away from a disappointing season for its highest-paid skater.
Nash led the Rangers in goals last season, but 26 goals and 39 points in 65 games aren't necessarily numbers befitting a star player responsible for a $7.8-million cap charge in each of the next four seasons. Nash's production dropped precipitously during the postseason, when he scored three goals in 25 games.
With St. Louis and Stepan potentially serving as linemates, Nash will be expected to recapture the form that saw him score 38 or more goals three times with the Columbus Blue Jackets.
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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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