Blog Archives

The Case for trading Keith Yandle

Bobby Bevilacqua

keith yandle profile good pic 1-5

Photo courtesy of MSG Photos.

When the Rangers sent away draft picks and Anthony Duclair to the Arizona Coyotes, they acquired Keith Yandle, one of the most talented offensive defensemen in the entire NHL. The price was high, but he helped the team during their playoff run as well as shouldering heavy minutes while other players were injured.

In the year he’s been here, Yandle has delivered, showing off his elite level skills and driving possession while generating the most amount of offense from the blueline than any other player. Yandle leads the team in assists (31), he’s third on the team in points (35) and first among all defensemen, and he’s tied for second on the team in power play points with 12.

Despite everything that he has shown, and all of the offense he’s provided, Alain Vigneault continues to bury him on the third pairing when all six defensemen are healthy. When Ryan McDonagh was injured and Keith Yandle was on the top pairing, he was regularly getting 22 to 25 minutes of ice-time a night and playing extremely well. Read the rest of this entry

Rangers close out road trip with huge win over Dallas; Lundqvist makes 36 saves

Bobby Bevilacqua

Chris Kreider goal celebration 2-27

Photo courtesy of MSG Photos.

The road warriors are back in business.

After struggling away from home for much of the season, the Rangers (36-20-6) picked up their fifth road win in the last six games, scoring a late goal to take down the Dallas Stars (38-19-6) and continue their strong play as of late.

The Rangers have climbed up the standings with a 9-2-1 run over their last 12 games, finding ways to win and getting excellent goaltending from Henrik Lundqvist in the process. He made 36 saves, marking the third straight game that he stopped at least 35 shots. After claims that this team was done, lain Vigneault’s squad are not just four points behind the Stars for the second best record in the entire league. Read the rest of this entry

Evaluating the Rangers’ potential trade pieces

Bobby Bevilacqua

oscar lindberg skating with puck 10-18

Oscar Lindberg could be a trade chip at the deadline. Photo courtesy of MSG Photos.

It’s no secret that the Rangers are preparing to add a player or two before Monday’s deadline approaches. Unlike the last few seasons, it’s unclear whether or not they’ll make another big splash (unlikely) or instead try and add a depth player or two to improve the bottom six.

Players like Eric Staal, Andrew Ladd, Radim Vrbata and Kris Versteeg have been thrown around. The latter two are the more likely for the Rangers to add because of their smaller cap hits and the lower price. With this year’s draft pick almost certainly going to the Coyotes, the Rangers can’t afford to keep on sending first rounders to other teams. So here’s what they can do with what they already have.

Chris Kreider – Now lots of people, including myself, have talked about the possibility of trading Chris Kreider by this season’s deadline. A supposed swap of Kreider and Loui Eriksson from Boston has been thrown out as a rumor. The thought process is that the Rangers won’t be able to afford to keep JT Miller, Kevin Hayes and Kreider, and that Miller and Hayes are both better, further developed players. Read the rest of this entry

The Problem with the Process

John Dundon

Jeff Gorton and Glen Sather

Photo courtesy of Bruce Bennett/Getty Images.

The New York Rangers have managed to stay in the cup conversation despite organizational failures, past and present.

The Blueshirts started out the year strong but wound up limping past the half way mark of the season sporting a modest 26-16-5 record. One cannot but help wonder what the main underlying cause is for the team’s decline in play could possibly be. Not because they are hard-pressed to find issues, which have been plentiful and even overwhelming thus far through the 2015-2016 campaign.

It’s surprising though given the fact that right around this time last season, the Rangers took off. They dominated the league, even in the wake of losing Henrik Lundqvist for an extended period due to a freakish neck injury. Cam Talbot had replaced and even duplicated the edge that Lundqvist gave the Rangers night in and out. The Rangers finished the season on a tear and made a trip to game 7 of the conference final, where injuries eventually caught up to them in a humbling 2-0 loss on home ice. While the decline may be a surprise to some it didn’t sneak up on people who have looked at and made a point of the organizations failures, especially dating back to the offseason after that heartbreaking 4-1 Stanley Cup Final defeat. Read the rest of this entry

Vigneault finally used Yandle properly, and the Rangers were a better team because of it

Bobby Bevilacqua

keith yandle full body 12-6

Photo courtesy of MSG Photos.

 

When the Rangers fell apart against the Capitals on Sunday, a lot went wrong. The defensive coverage was bad, there were guys open in front of the net, the penalty kill was poor, and there were turnovers. I could go on and on. Needless to say, it was a bad performance from a Rangers team that had been playing much better, even in their losses.

Heading into yesterday’s game, I expected the Rangers to win against a pretty bad Vancouver team that was missing their best player (Henrik Sedin) and because they’ve been alternating wins and losses for a few weeks now. And although they ran into a red-hot Ryan Miller, who stood on his head all night long, they managed to get a win.

If you just looked at the box core, you wouldn’t realize that this was total and utter domination by the Rangers. At even strength, the Rangers led in shot attempts by a massive margin, finishing as a +35 on the night (70-35). They had 36 scoring chances and 17 high danger scoring chances. And they had 49 shots on goal, which isn’t including the six times that they hit the post in the game. If it wasn’t for Ryan Miller, and if they had a bit more luck, this could have easily been a 5+ goal night for New York. Read the rest of this entry