Kukla's Korner

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Entries with the tag: new york rangers

‘Early overreactions’

USA Today's Kevin Allen and Jimmy Hascup issue "early overreactions" to the NHL season thus far:

Nikita Kucherov could be the MVP: True. His seven-game goal scoring streak to start the season reflects a star entering his prime, not a player experiencing a hot streak. He netted 30 goals in 2015-16 and 40 goals last season. His wicked shot, experience and elusiveness give him 50-goal ability. He meshes well with Lightning linemates Steven Stamkos and Vladislav Namestnikov. He has a career 54.6% Corsi, which is an indication of puck possession. Kucherov could end up with monstrous statistics. If the Lightning continue to be among the NHL’s best teams, Kucherov will be in Hart conversation.

New York Rangers (1-5-1) are done: False. Regardless if the struggles cost coach Alain Vigneault his job, the Rangers still possess enough talent to be a playoff team. With Kevin Shattenkirk, the defense has been molded to transition the puck better, and it doesn’t seem likely the defense will be this bad all year. The forward group — even without a true star — has the pieces to be effective. Even if they don’t match the scoring rate of 9.3% at five-on-five from last season, they won’t shoot 5.2% all year. At 35, Henrik Lundqvist is still very good.

NHL’s increased crackdown on slashing will create a significant scoring increase: False. Teams are averaging 3.10 goals per game. If that would hold for an entire season, it would be the first time in 13 years teams have averaged three goals per game. But we’ve seen this before: The NHL changes how it officiates the game, and goals go up. We know it’s only temporary. Right now, the number of power play opportunities have increased and shots on goal are up by two shots per game (30.1 to 32.1). But history tells us NHL players will adapt quickly. Before long, we will be back below three goals per game.

Continued

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  Tags: alain+vigneault, henrik+lundqvist, new+york+rangers, nikita+kucherov, tampa+bay+lightning

Friedman on early-season jitters

Among Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman's "30 Thoughts":

There’s a GM who has one of the best lines I’ve ever heard about life in sports: “There are only two moods — winning and hell.”

In conversations over the last week, one theme stood out: This league is tense.

“Well, it’s always tense,” one executive laughed. “But even more than normal for this early.”

Various coaches, players, execs and media said they could see it in places like Arizona (winless after some good summer moves), Boston (injuries and a slow start, despite talented young players), Minnesota (injuries and expectation), Montreal (losses and intense local pressure), New York Rangers (roster in transition), Vancouver (attendance), Washington (organizational pressure) and Winnipeg (rough start before three straight wins).

Watching the Rangers’ last two games, I don’t think I’ve ever seen Alain Vigneault look so stressed. Until their young prospects — Lias Andersson and Filip Chytil — are ready, they’ll be thin at centre. And in the Metropolitan division, it’s very hard to win like that as Pittsburgh proved on Tuesday night.

I’m sure it’s similar in other sports, but one of the biggest changes over the years is the decrease in early-season optimism. It used to last 10 games. Not anymore. I’m not one to complain about the stresses of my job; I always think of Hyman Roth in Godfather II: “This is the business we’ve chosen.”

But pro sports takes its toll, and you can already see it.

Friedman continues at length...

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  Tags: boston+bruins, minnesota+wild, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, phoenix+coyotes, washington+capitals, winnipeg+jets

Rangers lose Lundqvist for 2-3 weeks

From Sportsnet:

New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist will miss the next two to three weeks with a lower-body injury, the team announced Saturday.

Lundqvist last played on March 7, in a win against the Florida Panthers.

He has a 2.65 goals-against average and .913 save percentage this season.

New York has recalled goaltender Magnus Hellberg from AHL Hartford.

Here's the Rangers' Tweet:

Update: From the New York Post's Larry Brooks:

Continue Reading »

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  Tags: henrik+lundqvist, new+york+rangers

Rangers without Nash, Lundqvist vs. Hurricanes

From the New York Rangers:

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  Tags: henrik+lundqvist, new+york+rangers, rick+nash

Get ready for the usual amount of trade deadline fireworks (like a Shattenkirk trade)

George here. I've been on a "scouting trip" to Grand Rapids, Michigan to cover the Red Wings' AHL affiliate, the Grand Rapids Griffins, over the past two days, and Griffins coach Todd Nelson had a simple take on the trade deadline when asked how he was preparing his players:

Nelson, whose team is about to embark on a two-week trip to Texas and California, said that he told all his players to bring their passports with them to Austin and San Antonio, because the Red Wings will spend the trade deadline in Western Canada, and there's no telling when a team that's "selling" for the first time in a quarter-century might have to call up a player or two.

According to the Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch, the final 48-to-72 hours before Wednesday's trade deadline will finally separate "buyers" and "sellers," and despite forecasts of a "weak draft" and "flat cap," the normal amount of trades will occur:

The talk has certainly increased over the last 48 hours with teams such as the Carolina Hurricanes, Dallas Stars and Detroit Red Wings accepting the reality of not making the post-season by unloading players for picks.

It won’t stop there with Arizona, Buffalo, Colorado, New Jersey, Tampa Bay, Vancouver and Winnipeg, with assets they can deal to try to get something in return. League executives predict GMs will be busy at the last minute, because they usually are.

“It’ll be the same — somewhere between 20 to 25 trades,” a league executive said last Thursday. “Everyone knows who’s out there. Some teams have games to play before Wednesday and most teams will wait until the wire.

“But if they have a deal that makes sense, they’ll do the deal.”

Garrioch continues, and he offers a representative example:

Continue Reading »

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  Tags: kevin+shattenkirk, new+york+rangers, pittsburgh+penguins, st.+louis+blues, washington+capitals

Will the Blues still move Shattenkirk?

The Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch reports that the Blues are considering moving Kevin Shattenkirk even though St. Louis is in the thick of the Western Conference's playoff race:

Doug Armstrong is facing a deadline dilemma. Since deciding he’d send head coach Ken Hitchcock packing in favour of Mike Yeo on Feb. 1, the St. Louis Blues are back in a playoff position and heading into Saturday’s action they were five points ahead of the Nasville Predators for the final playoff spot in the Central Division.

Now, the Blues’ GM has an even bigger decision to make regarding unrestricted free agent defenceman Kevin Shattenkirk.

He is regarded by many in league circles as the biggest chip available at the March 1 trade deadline, but Armstrong is facing the reality that the Blues are in the thick of the playoff race in the West. Can he really afford to send Shattenkirk elsewhere just because he won’t sign a deal?

The New York Rangers and Toronto Maple Leafs are among the teams that have shown interest.

Right now, the asking price for Shattenkirk, 28, who has 11 goals and 42 points, has three elements: a high-end prospect, a first-round pick and another piece. Teams don’t want to pay that for a rental and the Blues are willing to do a sign and trade. However, a deal fell through recently.

“If they can get a good deal I think they’ll take the assets,” said a league executive Saturday.

Garrioch continues with many rumors...

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  Tags: kevin+shattenkirk, mike+yeo, new+york+rangers, st.+louis+blues, toronto+maple+leafs

Henrik Lundqvist earns his 400th win

Henrik Lundqvist earned his 400th career win in a 4-2 victory over the Colorado Avalanche:

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  Tags: henrik+lundqvist, new+york+rangers

A possible free agent signing and a possible Avs coaching resolution

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  Tags: brandon+pirri, colorado+avalanche, new+york+rangers

A bit more about ‘Da Beauty League’

From NHL.com's Tom Gulitti:

The start of the NHL season is more than two months away, but it felt like it was right around the corner at Braemar Arena on Thursday.

Fans filled the rink for an evening of three 4-on-4 games in the inaugural season of Da Beauty League. Even with some players unavailable to play because of other commitments, the league's six teams featured 75 players from 16 NHL organizations, 14 minor league teams and seven NCAA teams. All of them are either from Minnesota or spend their summers there.

"It's funny to think it took this long to get something like this going with the amount of players that come back here," said New York Rangers captain Ryan McDonagh, who scored two goals to help Team Tradition rally for a 6-5 shootout win against RBC Wealth Management. "With the pros and colleges in the area and just the number of players who train here, it's been a great thing. I think all of us players didn't realize how big it was going to be and how many kids are having a blast just watching us."

Da Beauty League plays three games (two halves of 25 running minutes) a night here on Tuesdays and Thursdays. The competition concludes with the championship game on Aug. 10.

Continued

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  Tags: new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh

Praising Brad Richards

The New York Post's Larry Brooks spends a fair portion of his Saturday notebook discussing the purported plan for a single-team arena to be used by the New York Islanders, but he finishes with this:

Brad Richards, who announced his retirement this week, leaves a legacy as one of the most well-liked, admired and respected players of his time among his peers.

The 36-year-old’s stay with the Rangers did not quite work out as conceived by either party, but there is no question Richards’ presence elevated the club’s professionalism and credibility throughout his three years on Broadway.

And he would have been back for more if not for the punitive cap-recapture amendment to the CBA out of the 2012-13 lockout that was aimed squarely at No. 19 and the Rangers.

There was a Cup early with Tampa Bay (with the Conn Smythe in 2004) then another late with Chicago. That no-look pass in the 2015 clincher for the Blackhawks was a jaw-dropping work of art few could have conceived, let alone executed. It is his single-frame highlight moment.

Richards had a great career for which he was quite handsomely compensated. The league is poorer without him.

Continued

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  Tags: brad+richards, chicago+blackhawks, new+york+rangers, tampa+bay+lightning

Ranking the Top 10 American players

From NHL.com's Brian Compton:

The United States of America is celebrating its 240th birthday Monday. Citizens will spend the day celebrating their freedom with friends and family.

Keeping in the holiday spirit, NHL.com looks at the top 10 American NHL players of all-time:

1. Mike Modano, C -- Arguably the best U.S.-born player in the NHL history, Modano spent two decades with the Minnesota North Stars/Dallas Stars franchise and led it to the Stanley Cup in 1999. Modano played 1,499 regular-season games, and his 561 goals and 1,374 points are more than any player born in the U.S. He also had 58 goals and 146 points in 176 Stanley Cup Playoffs games. Modano was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2014.

2. Brian Leetch, D -- Leetch broke into the NHL with the Rangers late in the 1987-88 season and won the Calder Trophy in 1988-89 with 23 goals and 48 assists in 68 games. He won the Conn Smythe Trophy and helped the Rangers win their first Stanley Cup championship in 54 years in 1994 and remained in New York for another 10 seasons. Leetch finished his career with stops with the Toronto Maple Leafs and Boston Bruins. In 1,205 regular-season games he had 247 goals and 781 assists. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2009.

Continued

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  Tags: boston+bruins, brian+leetch, dallas+stars, mike+modano, minnesota+north+stars, new+york+rangers, toronto+maple+leafs

NHL announces start times for Games 5 of Pens-Rangers, Ducks-Preds and Blues-Hawks series

From the NHL:

START TIMES SET FOR FIRST ROUND GAMES ON SATURDAY, APRIL 23

NEW YORK (April 22, 2016) – The National Hockey League today announced the following updates to the 2016 Stanley Cup Playoffs First Round schedule:

· The start time for Game 5 of the First Round series between the Pittsburgh Penguins and New York Rangers has been set for 3 p.m. ET on Saturday, April 23, in Pittsburgh. In the U.S., the game will be broadcast exclusively on NBC. In Canada, the game will be on SN360 and TVA Sports.

· The start time for Game 5 of the First Round series between the Anaheim Ducks and Nashville Predators has been set for 6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT on Saturday in Anaheim. Outside of the local markets, the game will be televised on NBCSN in the U.S. In Canada, the game will be on Sportsnet and TVA Sports.

· The start time for Game 6 of the First Round series between the St. Louis Blues and Chicago Blackhawks has been set for 8 p.m. ET/7 p.m. CT on Saturday in Chicago. In the U.S., the game will be broadcast exclusively on NBC. In Canada, the game will be on CBC and TVA Sports 2.

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  Tags: anaheim+ducks, chicago+blackhawks, nashville+predators, new+york+rangers, pittsburgh+penguins, st.+louis+blues

Rangers lose McDonagh

The New York Rangers clinched a playoff spot with their 4-2 win over the Columbus Blue Jackets, but they lost Ryan McDonagh to a shot-blocking injury:

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  Tags: columbus+blue+jackets, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh

Saturday Headlines: On Drouin, Shattenkirk, Yandle and All-Star voting

According to Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman and Damien Cox:

  • The Tampa Bay Lightning are looking for a young player with a comparable contract in return for Jonathan Drouin, which is why Robby Fabbri's name is making the rounds;
  • Kevin Shattenkirk's name is on the market because St. Louis was going to send him to Columbus for Ryan Johansen, and he may still be available as the Blues look to add offense;
  • Keith Yandle is probably going to be traded because the Rangers won't re-sign him as a free agent;
  • The All-Star Game may include a "quiet meeting" about expansion, but no vote by the Board of Governors;
  • Jakub Kindl is on waivers and the Red Wings are cap-crunched due to Johan Franzen's LTIR issue and Kyle Quincey's $4.25 million salary coming back on Monday, and it's 50-50 as to whether Kindl might be claimed;
  • Friedman reports that the NHL may change All-Star voting to allow fans to pick captains or issue a list of candidates from which the fans can pick All-Stars;
  • Cox states that William Nylander is on a slow but steady return process from a concussion suffered at the World Juniors;
  • And Robin Lehner should return to the Buffalo Sabres next week:

Continue Reading »

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  Tags: all-star+game, buffalo+sabres, detroit+red+wings, jakub+kindl, johan+franzen, jonathan+drouin, keith+yandle, kevin+shattenkirk, kyle+quincey, new+york+rangers, robin+lehner, st.+louis+blues, tampa+bay+lightning, toronto+maple+leafs, william+nylander

Brooks: Patrick Kane’s Hart candidacy is free and clear

The New York Post's Larry Brooks believes that those opposed to Patrick Kane's candidacy for the Hart Trophy based upon last summer's events should pipe down:

I have no idea whether or not I would want Patrick Kane to date my sister. I don’t know him except from afar and through a locker-room interview scrum or two. But that hypothetical would not inform my choice for the Hart Trophy if I were to have a ballot, nor should it become an issue when votes are cast immediately after the regular season.

There is no morals clause attached to the Hart, which goes to, “The player adjudged to be the most valuable to his team.”

At this point, with Kane on a franchise-record tying 21-game point streak he aims to break Sunday night, the Blackhawks’ winger is the MVP frontrunner, with Dallas’ James Neal and Tyler Seguin and the Rangers’ Henrik Lundqvist, the Islanders’ John Tavares and Washington’s Alex Ovechkin also in the conversation.

This is a case about hockey. There is nothing more to see here beyond Kane’s brilliance on the ice, just as the Erie County’s DA office decided there was nothing more to see in the “so-called ‘case’ ” there, either.

Brooks continues...

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  Tags: alex+ovechkin, chicago+blackhawks, dallas+stars, henrik+lundqvist, james+neal, john+tavares, new+york+islanders, new+york+rangers, patrick+kane, tyler+seguin, washington+capitals

Habs off to historic start

Among Sportsnet's Mike Johnston's "Seven Things We Learned From the NHL on Thursday":

Canadiens make history…

Considering all the Stanley Cups, all the legendary teams, the fact it’s the only franchise in the NHL with more than 3,000 wins, it’s hard to believe the Montreal Canadiens had never started a season 5-0 before.

That changed Thursday when the Habs blanked the New York Rangers 3-0 in their home opener.

The Canadiens had started the season 4-0 three previous times (1955-56, 1970-71 and 1977-78) and each time they’ve done it they’ve gone on to win the Stanley Cup. If you’re a Habs fan who believes in good omens, you must be loving the start to the 2015-16 campaign.

Continued

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  Tags: montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers

Canadiens 5-and-0, Price making big saves

The Montreal Canadiens are 5-and-0 after defeating the New York Rangers 3-0 on Thursday evening, and Carey Price made a sensational glove save on Rick Nash to keep it 1-0 toward the end of the 2nd period:

Price also said hello to Chris Kreider behind the net:

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  Tags: carey+price, chris+kreider, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, rick+nash

LeBrun conducts a Q and A with Max Pacioretty

From ESPN's Pierre LeBrun:

Montreal Canadiens captain Max Pacioretty, the team's leading offensive star who takes his new leadership role seriously, sat down Wednesday for a conversation ranging from his team's fast start, to improving his own game, to what he'd do if named NHL commissioner for a day.

Pierre LeBrun: The smile comes easy these days for you guys, I'm sure. A 4-0 start, all on the road, you can't be that.

Max Pacioretty: No, it's been a great start for us. The most important win, I think, was the last game. It's tough to play four in a row on the road, and especially against a team (Pittsburgh) that has that many stars, hasn't won a game yet, and was coming home for their opener. That was a gutsy win by our group, I think. The way we came out in that third period and took over the rest of the game shows a lot about our group. It's encouraging moving forward that we have the confidence to play that way, hopefully for the whole year.

PL: Four goals in four games for you. I know you care more about the wins, but you are expected to score goals for this team. Is it nice to get that going early in terms of getting into a rhythm?

MP: Yeah, a bit. I mean, it definitely helps your confidence, but I think I've gotten some bounces early in the year. They come in bunches like that. I've just been fortunate right now. The role I'm given, I feel like is more two-way than it was in the past. A situation like last game, we're up 3-1 late in the game, you're trying to forecheck and make them play in their own end and make sure you don't give one up. I think if we have that mentality, we're going to win a lot of games.

Continued

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  Tags: max+pacioretty, max+pacioretty, montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers

Martin St. Louis leaving a long legacy

From the New York Post's Brett Cyrgalis:

There is no need to wait until Martin St. Louis is inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in order to see his legacy. It resides in every undersized athlete in the NHL, following his example of determination in overcoming any physical disadvantages that might exist.

“I’d like to say that I was part of that, of being able to see players not so much for their size, but for the athlete and the hockey player that they are,” St. Louis said Monday at the Rangers practice facility in Westchester, the first time he has taken questions since announcing his retirement July 2.

“For me, I had smaller players I looked up to when I was young,” said the 5-foot-8 St. Louis. “And when I was looking at little guys, it was, ‘They’re there, why can’t I be?’”

St. Louis, 40, played parts of the final two seasons of his 16-year career with the Rangers, coming over in a trade with the Lightning in March 2014. He joined a team with Mats Zuccarello, the diminutive Norwegian winger who finally had someone to look in the eye. During the past Eastern Conference final, the Rangers took on the Lightning, with terrific 5-foot-9 forward Tyler Johnson.

“I know a lot of shorter guys around the league, I get a chance to meet them — yeah, I was probably their idol at one point, and they’re going to be somebody else’s idol at some point,” St. Louis said. “That’s the beauty of the game. The wheel keeps turning. Guys are leaving, guys are coming in, and you try to affect the game and leave your mark as you go through. I think I’ve done that.”

Cyrgalis continues...

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  Tags: martin+st.+louis, mats+zuccarello, new+york+rangers, tampa+bay+lightning, tyler+johnson

Simmons: Leafs’ incomplete front office may haunt them

The Toronto Sun's Steve Simmons questions whether the Blackhawks are a classic sports dynasty, he discusses the Leafs' desire to essentially salvage the players who haven't been completely poisoned by the concept of playing hockey in Toronto (Phil Kessel is  not one of those players in Simmons' eyes), and he offers the following words of warning:

When Glen Sather was talking trade with Montreal in the deal that eventually sent Scott Gomez to the Canadiens, his assistant Jeff Gorton, was clear about New York’s needs: Make sure, he told Sather, that Ryan McDonagh is included in the transaction.

Sather had heard the name McDonagh, but had never seen him play. He listened to his assistant and moved accordingly.

When Brian Burke was talking trade with the Blue Jackets in a deal that sent Sergei Fedorov to Columbus, his assistant Bob Murray had a word of advice. “Don’t make the trade without Francois Beauchemin.”

Burke’s response: “Who the hell is Francois Beauchemin?”

He made the trade and Columbus included Beauchemin in the deal.

Why does this matter now? It matters as the Maple Leafs get ready to remake their roster. They don’t have a general manager. They don’t have a pro scout of any reputation. They may have capable junior hockey operators: But they don’t have people who know the NHL and the AHL and all levels of hockey inside and out.

When the time comes to make a deal next week and they need a [Jeff] Gorton or a [Tim] Murray whispering in a general manager’s ear, who will do the whispering? They don’t have a GM and they don’t have a Gorton or a Murray type. Of all that Brendan Shanahan has done, his lack of NHL experience and pro scouting acumen may come back to haunt him.

Simmons cintinues...

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  Tags: brendan+shanahan, brian+burke, francois+beauchemin, glen+sather, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh, sergei+fedorov, toronto+maple+leafs

Friedman’s ‘Headlines’ include discussion of front-office compensation, Competition Committee talk

 

Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman issued his customary "Saturday Headlines" during the second intermission of Hockey Night in Canada's Saturday broadcast, and he discussed the following topics:

According to Friedman:

  • The NHL's GM's will ensure that teams who have fired coaches or managers will not receive draft pick compensation--only coaches and front office executives who are under contract to an NHL team, not fired by an NHL team, will require compensation;
  • Friedman believes that John Hynes, Ray Shero's AHL coach for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins will probably be named the Devils' next coach, not Phil Housley;
  • Friedman doesn't believe that the Rangers will allow the Maple Leafs to speak to New York Rangers assistant GM Jeff Gorton;
  • He states that the Capitals and Braden Hotlby's representatives have begun to talk contract turkey;
  • And the NHLPA's Competition Committee will review the NHL's GM's proposals for 4-on-4-to-3-on-3 OT, defensive centers placing their sticks on the ice first and the 5% growth factor in the salary cap will all be discussed, with a "trial period" for 3-on-3 OT and possibly lesser growth for the cap in the offing.

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  Tags: braden+holtby, gm+meetings, new+jersey+devils, new+york+rangers, nhlpa, phil+housley, ray+shero, salary+cap, toronto+maple+leafs, washington+capitals

Brassard notches hat trick in wild Rangers win over Tampa Bay, forcing 7th game on Friday

The Rangers forced a 7th and deciding game of the Eastern Conference Final by defeating the Tampa Bay Lightning 7-3 on Tuesday night, and the Rangers' wild and wacky win included a hat trick from Derick Brassard:

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  Tags: derick+brassard, new+york+rangers, tampa+bay+lightning

Tyler Johnson’ hat trick highlights Lightning win over Rangers

In what can only be described as a strange game, the New York Rangers dropped a 6-2 decision to the Tampa Bay Lightning, knotting the Eastern Conference Final at 1 game apiece, and Tyler Johnson's hat trick--consisting of a short-handed, an even-strength and a power play goal--was "the story" of the game (and it illustrates the Rangers' many defensive gaffes):

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  Tags: new+york+rangers, tampa+bay+lightning, tyler+johnson

NHL announces start times for possible TB-MTL Game 5, NYR-WASH Game 6

From the NHL:

START TIMES SET FOR 2015 STANLEY CUP PLAYOFFS SECOND ROUND EASTERN CONFERENCE GAMES SCHEDULED FOR SATURDAY AND SUNDAY

NEW YORK (May 7, 2015) – The National Hockey League today announced updated start times and national television information for 2015 Stanley Cup Playoffs Second Round Eastern Conference games scheduled for Saturday, May 9 and Sunday, May 10.

  • The start time for Game 5 (if necessary) of the series between the Montreal Canadiens and Tampa Bay Lightning has been set for 7 p.m. ET in Montreal on Saturday. The game will be seen on CBC, TVA Sports and NBCSN. 

 

  • The start time for Game 6 (if necessary) of the series between the New York Rangers and Washington Capitals has been set for 7 p.m. ET in Washington on Sunday.  The game will be seen on NBCSN, CBC and TVA Sports.

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  Tags: montreal+canadiens, new+york+rangers, tampa+bay+lightning, washington+capitals

Jimmy Fallon pokes fun at NHL mugshots, playoffs version

In the comedy department (we have that here), Jimmy Fallon poked fun at the "mugshots" of players taking part in the second round of tne NHL playoffs last night, and the results were quite amusing:

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  Tags: anaheim+ducks, calgary+flames, chicago+blackhawks, minnesota+wild, new+york+rangers, tampa+bay+lightning, washington+capitals

Burakowsky gets the better of his hero

From NHL.com's Katie Brown:

Washington Capitals forward Andre Burakovsky spent a large portion of his childhood idolizing New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist.

On Wednesday, Burakovsky scored his first two Stanley Cup Playoff goals -- against Lundqvist -- to help the Capitals to a 2-1 win in Game 4 of the Eastern Conference Second Round at Verizon Center.

"Obviously he's been my favorite goalie since I grew up," Burakovsky said. "He's kind of close to my hometown so I've been watching him my whole life. It's a pretty special moment for me to score two goals on Lundqvist in such an important game as this."

Burakovsky's first goal tied the game at 16:29 of the second period. After intercepting a pass from Rangers forward Chris Kreider, he held the puck and skated through the slot toward the right wall, exhibiting admirable patience in outlasting Lundqvist to make it 1-1.

"I wasn't really planning it, it just happened," Burakovsky said. "I don't know how to describe it. It's just in my head, guiding me sort of. I'm just trying to take the puck to the net."

Continued, and here's the second of Burakowsky's two goals:

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  Tags: henrik+lundqvist, new+york+rangers, washington+capitals

Holtby’s penalty shot save helps Capitals defeat Rangers, take 3-games-to-1 lead

Braden Holtby's penalty shot stop on Carl Hagelin helped the Washington Capitals take a 2-1 victory and 3-games-to-1 series lead over the New York Rangers on Wednesday night.

Caps vs. Bolts in the Eastern Conference Finals? That sounds loony, but it appears to be what we'll see next week at this time...

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  Tags: braden+holtby, carl+hagelin, new+york+rangers, washington+capitals

Hartley, Laviolette, Vigneault named Jack Adams finalists

From the NHL:

Bob Hartley of the Calgary Flames, Peter Laviolette of the Nashville Predators and Alain Vigneault of the New York Rangers are the three finalists for the 2014-15 Jack Adams Award, presented to the head coach who has "contributed the most to his team's success," the National Hockey League announced today.

Members of the NHL Broadcasters' Association submitted ballots for the Jack Adams Award at the conclusion of the regular season, with the top three vote-getters designated as finalists. The winner will be announced Wednesday, June 24, during the 2015 NHL Awards from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.

Following are the finalists for the Jack Adams Award, in alphabetical order:

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  Tags: alain+vigneault, bob+hartley, calgary+flames, nashville+predators, new+york+rangers, peter+laviolette

Beagle’s goal all the Capitals needed

Jay Beagle's off-two-skates goal was all the Washington Capitals needed to defeat the New York Rangers 1-0 on Monday night:

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  Tags: jay+beagle, new+york+rangers, washington+capitals

Garrioch discusses St. Louis, Jagr, trades-that-worked and a college UFA of note

Amongst the Ottawa Sun's Bruce Garrioch's trade-and-rumor talk for this Sunday, from a column which begins by discussing the Connor McDavid sweepstakes:

Rangers winger Martin St. Louis may be a UFA on July 1 and doesn't have a contract but don't be surprised if at some point he re-signs with the club. The Rangers have cap so you'd think if they do sign St. Louis the deal will be structured with attainable goals for games-played. When he left the Tampa Bay Lightning last year at the trade deadline, St. Louis only only wanted to go to the Rangers. It would be hard to believe he'd want to move on this juncture.

...

Florida GM Dale Tallon took a gamble at the deadline acquiring winger Jaromir Jagr from the Devils in exchange for two draft picks. The Panthers remain on the outside looking in for the final wild-card spot and need a strong push down the stretch plus some help to make it to the post-season. Jagr went into Saturday's game vs. the Bruins with a 2-5-7 points in nine games with Florida ... According to a league executive, here are some deadline acquisitions that have worked out well: Winger Drew Stafford and defenceman Tyler Myers (Buffalo) have both played well in Winnipeg; Forward Curtis Glencross (Calgary) has made an impact for the Capitals and Chris Stewart (Buffalo) has picked up some points for the Wild ... Keep an eye on Colgate forward Tyler Baun. He's getting plenty of attention from NHL scouts. Chicago GM Stan Bowman along with representatives from Colorado, Toronto, Philly and the Rangers were in Lake Placid Friday at the ECAC championships to watch Baun play ... Lots of people wonder if Arizona (don't call me Phoenix) Coyotes coach Dave Tippett will be back behind the bench next season? He's a lot better coach when goalie Mike Smith stops the puck.

Garrioch continues, discussing the All-Star Game format, the Sharks' issues and unrestricted free agent-to-be goalies...

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  Tags: chris+stewart, curtis+glencross, dave+tippett, drew+stafford, florida+panthers, jaromir+jagr, martin+st.+louis, mike+smith, new+york+rangers, phoenix+coyotes, tyler+myers

Rangers, Zuccarello agree to contract extension

Per TSN's Bob McKenzie and ESPN's Katie Strang, who are at slight odds about a no-trade clause:

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  Tags: mats+zuccarello, new+york+rangers

Winnipeg acquires Lee Stempniak from NYR for Carl Klingberg

Cue the "marriage of convenience" depth trade:

added 6:40pm, Winnipeg release is below...

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  Tags: carl+klingberg, lee+stempniak, new+york+rangers, winnipeg+jets

Report: New York Rangers finalizing contract extension with Mats Zuccarello

Yesterday evening, the New York Post's Larry Brooks reported that the New York Rangers and Mats Zuccarello couldn't come to a contract extension agreement in the $4.5 million range. That's apparently changed, according to TSN's Bob McKenzie:

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  Tags: mats+zuccarello, new+york+rangers

Yandle, Summers to New York Rangers for Duclair, John Moore, 2016 1st round pick

added 3:58pm,

 

added 4:10pm,

 

 

added 4:23 pm,

added 4:26 pm,

added 4:29 pm,

added 4:31 PM,

added 4:36 PM,

added 4:49 PM,

added 4:50 PM:

added 6:17pm, Arizona release is below...

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Filed in: NHL Teams, d, New York Rangers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: anthony+duclair, john+moore, keith+yandle, new+york+rangers, phoenix+coyotes

Pre-trade deadline ‘headlines’ from Cox and Friedman

added 9:31pm, Watch the segment below...


Two days prior to the trade deadline, Sportsnet's Damien Cox and Elliotte Friedman dished trade-related "headlines" during the 2nd intermission of Hockey Night in Canada's Saturday broadcast.

Cox stated that the Maple Leafs may be the most active team at the deadline. They're listening to offers for Jonathan Bernier, emphasis on "listening," but there are teams like San Jose, Dallas perhaps (given that Kari Lehtonen continues to struggle); Olli Jokinen, Korbinian Holzer and David Booth are also possible moves.

Cox wondered whether the Maple Leafs would trade Joffrey Lupul to the Habs, and there is only "very lukewarm interest" there, and the Clarkson deal was going to be more complicated, but the Blue Jackets and Leafs were unable to consummate a larger deal, so they swapped Horton for Clarkson.

According to Friedman, Patrick Sharp was not asked for a list of 10 teams to which he would accept a trade within 48 hours of the trade deadline, and because that list wasn't asked for before 3 PM on Saturday, he's going nowhere; he also reports that Mats Zuccarello and the Rangers are at contract loggerheads, and the Rangers offered 6 years at $4.5 million on average, so he's being shopped, but the Rangers are not allowing would-be suitors to discuss a contract with Zuccarello before making trade offers;

Jeff Petry's not playing tonight for Edmonton and Montreal, Anaheim and St. Louis have been rumored; Friedman wonders if the Blues have considered moving Vladimir Sobotka to help the team despite Sobotka's status as a KHL'er;

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  Tags: antoine+vermette, buffalo+sabres, calgary+flames, chicago+blackhawks, chris+stewart, columbus+blue+jackets, curtis+glencross, david+booth, david+clarkson, edmonton+oilers, jeff+petry, joffrey+lupul, jonathan+bernier, keith+yandle, korbinian+holzer, mark+pysyk, mats+zuccarello, nathan+horton, new+york+rangers, olli+jokinen, patrick+sharp, phoenix+coyotes, st.+louis+blues, ted+nolan, tim+murray, toronto+maple+leafs, vladimir+sobotka

Summarizing Cox and Friedman’s comments from Saturday’s ‘mini Hotstove’

Damien Cox and Elliotte Friedman had about 70 seconds' worth of time to issue their version of the Satellite Hotstove on Saturday's Hockey Night in Canada broadcast, but they sped-talked their way through the following topics:

1. Cox says questions were surrounding Kaberle-Rangers participation in Kaberle's skate in Toronto today as the New Jersey Devils have had Scott Gomez around for over a month, but he can't travel with them on the road as he's not under contract/can't be paid;

Kaberle is allowed to travel with the team, per an NHL memo, for about 10 days before the team has to sign him or let him go, so the Rangers have to make their decision in another 7 days.

2. Friedman reports that while Taylor Hall remains on the IR with a sprained knee, Hall can at least skate early next week, though his timeline has not changed;

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  Tags: alex+ovechkin, chicago+blackhawks, colorado+avalanche, dmitry+kulikov, edmonton+oilers, florida+panthers, luke+schenn, nathan+mackinnon, new+york+rangers, niklas+hjalmarsson, philadelphia+flyers, taylor+hall, tomas+kaberle, washington+capitals

Vladimir Tarasenko beats three Rangers and Cam Talbot via a ‘Kent Nilsson’ move

The St. Louis Blues defeated the New York Rangers 4-3 in a shootout on Monday night, but the game's prettiest goal came from Blues forward Vladimir Tarasenko, whose 1-1 marker involved beating three Rangers defensemen and then goaltender Cam Talbot with the move all the Swedish NHL'ers like to point out was pioneered by Kent Nilsson, not Peter Forsberg or Henrik Zetterberg:

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  Tags: cam+talbot, new+york+rangers, st.+louis+blues, vladimir+tarasenko

Friedman, Cox discuss Julien extension, Ekblad sticking with Panthers, etc.

This time the Hockey Night in Canada segment in which Elliotte Friedman and Damien Cox dish news and notes has been geo-blocked to Canada only (Paul sent me an email informing me of the "stuff we already know" in that Red Wings prospect Anthony Mantha is skating with the Grand Rapids Griffins, hopefully making his pro debut in about two weeks, but Daniel Alfredsson is not and may retire), but Friedman did offer some Twitter quips from his exchange, beginning with Ryan McDonagh's separated shoulder yielding interest in Carolina Hurricanes defenseman Andrej Sekera (who is "on the block"):

Ekblad scored his first goal, a game-winning marker in Florida's 2-1 win over Philadelphia on Saturday evening...

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  Tags: aaron+ekblad, andrej+sekera, boston+bruins, carolina+hurricanes, claude+julien, daniel+alfredsson, detroit+red+wings, florida+panthers, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh

John Moore ejected for hit-to-the-head on Erik Haula

So John Moore did this to Erik Haula...

 

Update: While we're at "Illegal Checks," Chris Kreider was ejected for this hit on Jonas Brodin:

Also:

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  Tags: erik+haula, john+moore, minnesota+wild, new+york+rangers

Rangers name McDonagh captain, go with four alternates

From the New York Rangers:

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  Tags: dan+girardi, derek+stepan, marc+staal, martin+st.+louis, new+york+rangers, ryan+mcdonagh

Afternoon round-up: Hillary Knight on ice with the Ducks; Flyers tweak cap; on the ‘Dry Scrape’

Amongst this afternoon's news, Twitter version:

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  Tags: anaheim+ducks, chicago+blackhawks, chris+pronger, daniel+carcillo, kevin+hayes, new+york+rangers, philadelphia+flyers

Lundqvist on Letterman

Via SI's Michael Blinn, New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist took a break from the NHL and NHLPA's "Player Media Tour" to appear on The Late Show With David Letterman on Monday night. The Late Show's YouTube channel posted a 2-minute clip of the impeccably-dressed Lundqvist discussing playing goal in the playoffs and the "goony" Los Angeles Kings:

The Late Show's website posts entire episodes on a slightly delayed basis, so Lundqvist's full appearance should be up in a day or two...

And here's what the NHL and NHLPA are doing later this morning:

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  Tags: henrik+lundqvist, new+york+rangers

Dreger: Lee Stempniak likely to sign with Rangers

By mid-July standards, this Tweet from TSN's Darren Dreger counts as breaking news:

Having lost Brian Boyle to Tampa Bay, Stempniak's a solid-enough replacement.

Update: Here comes Sportsnet...

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  Tags: lee+stempniak, new+york+rangers

Ken Daneyko weighs in on the NHL’s UFA-to-be defensemen

Ken Daneyko appeared on the NHL Live on Wednesday afternoon, and he made some surprising remarks.

As far as Daneyko is concerned, Matt Niskanen may turn out to be some team's modern-day version of the Rangers signing Bobby Holik to a $9 million-a-season contract as a 3rd-liner--Daneyko believes that Niskanen is not necessarily a top-two defenseman, and he feels that someone is going to overpay significantly for Niskanen having a career year. He suggests that, "Just because other teams sign outrageous contracts, it doesn't mean you should," so he feels $5-6 million is too much for Niskanen...

Daneyko also suggests that Brooks Orpik is a "complementary" stay-at-home, physical defenseman, not a puck-mover, and he wonders how much Orpik "has left in the tank" (as such, Daneyko feels that Orpik's health = term is a concern);

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  Tags: anton+stralman, brooks+orpik, dan+boyle, matt+niskanen, new+york+rangers, pittsburgh+penguins, willie+mitchell

Los Angeles Kings win the Stanley Cup

Alec Martinez just scored the game-winning goal in double overtime.

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  Tags: alec+martinez, los+angeles+kings, new+york+rangers

A different take on ‘the West is best’: competition breeds Cup domanance

The New York Times' Lynn Zinser offers a take on the Rangers-Kings series which ponders, "Is the West simply better?" theory from a slightly different (and noteworthy) perspective:

This ridiculously uphill battle, however, is brought to you by an N.H.L. that has seen its balance of power slip out of whack. The West has been reliably the better of the two conferences for quite some time, with its teams winning the season series against the East in every season since 2005-6. The West has also won five of the last seven Stanley Cups and six of the last eight Presidents’ Trophies, for the team with the best regular-season record.

That strength has only been increasing. In these playoffs, the quality of the two conference finals series were so far apart that a Stanley Cup finals sweep might have been predicted no matter which team won the West. The Chicago Blackhawks, after all, have won two of those recent five Stanley Cups, and the Kings were champs two years ago.

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  Tags: detroit+red+wings, los+angeles+kings, new+york+rangers, pittsburgh+penguins

‘Henke’s’ show gives the Rangers life

This time, the Los Angeles Kings couldn't rally from a 2-0 deficit, and it was due to some absolutely fantabulous goaltending--and a wee bit of luck--by Henrik Lundqvist, whose 40-save performance (including 15 saves in the 3rd period, a period in which the Rangers had 1 shot on Jonathan Quick) powered the Rangers to a 2-1 win and a Game 5 in Los Angeles this Friday.

Benoit Pouliot's first-period tip and Martin St. Louis' second-period drive to the net were answered by a Dustin Brown breakaway 8:46 into the 2nd, but after that, Lundqvist shut the door.

This little assist by Anton Stralman in the first period helped...

As did some slushy ice and another hand from Derek Stepan in the 3rd (via CJ Folger on Twitter):

And now the Rangers have some life, though the way the Kings dominated play doesn't bode well for a rally from a 3-0 deficit (though I will readily admit that BOTH teams look exhausted at this point).

I've seen better goaltending performances, but this one is in my top 5, and I've been watching hockey for 23 years now. Jonathan "The Scorpion King" Quick got bested by King Henrik, and that was...phenomenal stuff.

Please note: SB Nation's Steve Lepore and Grantland's Katie Baker pointed out that there is no hockey this weekend due to the World Cup of soccer taking place in Brazil, not due to some slight against the wonder that is our game.

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  Tags: anton+stralman, derek+stepan, henrik+lundqvist, los+angeles+kings, new+york+rangers

Quick was great but his teammates were better as LA defeats NY 3-0

Jonathan Quick made a pair of absolutely remarkable, beautiful backhand paddle saves en route to a shutout as the Los Angeles Kings defeated the New York Rangers 3-0 on Monday night...

 


But I'd argue that the Kings played so very well in shutting down six Rangers power plays and stifling secondary scoring chances to the point that had Quick surrendered goals on both of the above-listed instances, all the Kings needed was this last-second break to really put the hammer down on the Rangers;

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  Tags: jonathan+quick, los+angeles+kings, new+york+rangers, rick+nash

Rangers influences and Don Cherry’s top 5

Prior to tonight's Stanley Cup Final game, Hockey Night in Canada allowed the Rangers' players to share their hockey inspirations, and let's just say that Mats Zuccarello had some fun with the, "My favorite player growing up" line...

And Don Cherry introducing the top 5 prospects for the NHL Draft is something of a tradition as well. The fact that Don didn't lose it when Sam Bennett discussed how much Doug Gilmour means to him was remarkable:

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  Tags: don+cherry, mats+zuccarello, new+york+rangers

Kings master the rope-a-dope again, win 5-4 in double OT

That was most certainly intriguing. For the second consecutive game, the Los Angeles Kings surrendered a 2-0 lead; for the second consecutive game, the Kings forced overtime, overcoming both the Rangers' relentless attack and their own defensive mistakes (Willie Mitchell and Matt Greene did not have the best nights in their own end); and for the second consecutive game, the Los Angeles Kings persevered and prevailed, with Dustin Brown tipping Willie Mitchell's shot past Henrik Lundqvist 10:26 into the second OT period.

Los Angeles prevails 5-4, and now the series gets interesting: both teams will have to try to get their players to bed sooner than later as 9 AM Pacific Daylight Time flights are on the Sunday docket, and the teams will play three games in five nights, so we may see the kind of mental fatigue that played into tonight's score leak its way into regulation time action.

Justin Williams had 3 assists, Willie Mitchell had a goal and an assist, and Jonathan Quick stopped 34 shots for LA; Derik Brassard, Mats Zuccarello and Ryan McDonagh had 1-goal-and-1-assist games for the Rangers, Rick Nash had 8 shots, and Henrik Lundqvist (who may or may not have issued a Dustin Brown-style dive at one point--quite a bit of diving in this series!) stopped 39 for New York.

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  Tags: derick+brassard, dustin+brown, henrik+lundqvist, jonathan+quick, justin+williams, los+angeles+kings, mats+zuccarello, matt+greene, new+york+rangers, rick+nash, ryan+mcdonagh, willie+mitchell

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