Found May 06, 2013 on
Blue Seat Blogs:
I think he likes that face off circle.
In our third post that comes via a great graphic from LAR (Loyal Anonymous Reader), we have a great chart of where Rick Nash scores his goals. Of Nash’s 21 goals this season, he really only scores from two areas: In front of the net and at the off-wing face off dot. Neither of these should really surprise anyone, as we’ve known about his sweet spot for a while.
Most of those even strength goals from down low are part of his patented “skate through everyone below the goal line then cut back and use ridiculous reach to slide it under the goalie” move. Almost all of those come at even strength, which makes sense since he’s driving to the net more at 5v5. When the Rangers are on the powerplay, they tend to set up more, thus less goals down low.
What really interests me is eight goals from the off-wing face off dot. Yes, we know he likes to shoot from there, and that’s not what interests me. What really piques my interest is that he reminds me of Jaromir Jagr in terms of location. Remember how much Jagr loved to line up on the off-wing dot, especially on the powerplay, and just have pucks fed to him so he could line up shots?
I bring this up because when Jagr was with the Rangers, then-coach Tom Renney really designed the powerplay with Jagr as the focal point, and the guys on the ice executed this to perfection. Michael Nylander and Marty Straka were essentially there to get the puck to Jagr at that spot. That powerplay formation was pretty potent.
It can be argued that the personnel on the current powerplay is just as skilled as that Jagr powerplay. If that strategy was so successful with Jagr there, then why haven’t they tried setting it up this way with Nash? It’s clear he likes to shoot from that spot, all three of his powerplay goals came from that spot.
With the powerplay really struggling, it’s worth a shot to try this out. Nash is that game breaker the Rangers wanted, and it seems that the powerplay execution doesn’t necessarily allow him to let it go.
Every great power play has their primary scorer on the off-wing face off dot. The Caps have Ovechkin lined up there and the Lightning have Stamkos there, so why shouldn’t the Rangers follow suit? Both of these clubs run the same powerplay that the Rangers do (umbrella/1-3-1), so there are many similarities.
We aren’t in the locker room, so we don’t know what Sully has in mind for the powerplay. For all we know, he’s been preaching this and the guys have failed to execute. Maybe he hasn’t been preaching this. Either way, it’s clear Nash likes to shoot from there. Maybe it’s time to take advantage of that.
BEST OF MAXIM
Marc Staal returned last night, will Ryane Clowe follow on Wednesday? (Photo: Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports)
What, you thought this was going to be easy? The 2011-2012 Rangers came within two points of winning the President’s Trophy and still needed two seven-game series to get to the Eastern Conference Finals, so why would the 2013 version, which had to scratch and...
Thanks to LAR again for this.
Again big thanks to Loyal Anonymous Reader (LAR) for the above graphic, which shows the goal locations for each of Derek Stepan’s 18 goals this season. As you can tell from the picture, Stepan’s game is to get to the front of the net for deflections, rebounds, and otherwise dirty goals. He did this for 16 of his 18 goals, and I’d bet that only...
Per Dan Rosen, Ryane Clowe is participating in practice today in a full contact jersey. This is the first time Clowe is in a contact jersey since his injury, and his second practice. With the Rangers in desperate need of offense, Clowe’s return to the lineup would be a big one.
Per Rosen, Marc Staal was also at practice today in a full contact jersey.
HF did their annual organizational rankings, and the Rangers came in at #17 on the list. The Rangers have been pretty high for the past few years, but have seen almost all of their prospects graduate to the NHL level, hence the drop this year. HF cites the Rangers strong forward depth as a major strength, along with the presence of Dylan McIlrath and Brady Skjei, who both project...
Lots going on at the Rangers optional practice. Some good, some not so much.
Katie Strang at ESPN.com reports that Ryane Clowe still isn't sure if he'll play tonight, however, Pat Leonard at the Daily News expects Clowe to take Arron Asham's spot in the line-up after the former Shark left practice early while Asham remained on the ice with the other likely scratches...
from Howie Kussoy of the New York Post,
Staal played 17:17, alongside Anton Stralman, and said he felt good physically and with his conditioning, while acknowledging his timing needs improvement, particularly in making his return to the faster pace of the playoffs.
Staal said his return was delayed by issues that arose with his eye last week, which have since cleared, but...
The New York Rangers have activated defenseman Marc Staal from the injured reserve list and should be ready to suit up Monday night. Staal was nailed by a puck close to his eye in early March and has been suffering from blurry vision ever since.
The post New York Rangers Activate Marc Staal From Injured Reserve appeared first on FFLockerRoom | NFL - MLB News | Fantasy Sports Advice...
It certainly would be a boost for the Rangers if Staal does play tonight.
I don't "know" anything for certain, but if Marc Staal plays for NYR tonight I "think" I will be not surprised.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) May 6, 2013
NHL Playoff hockey is full of “dirty” goals. New York Rangers forward Derek Stepan collected a “dirty” goal on Monday night to give the New York Rangers a 4-3 win and cut their series deficit with the Washington Capitals to 2-1. It was a pretty goal if you are a hockey grinder, it is the kind of goal that can change momentum. Only time will tell.
Follow us on Twitter...
We've all laughed at ESPN's hockey coverage, or lack of hockey coverage, for the past several years. When the network does try to cover the game they usually fail miserably, relying on analysts that have no experience and no business offering insight on the NHL.
Here they failed just trying to show some highlights from the New York Rangers - Washington Capitals series...
As we all know, John Tortorella isn't the biggest fan of the post game press conference. So after being peppered by questions for over seven minutes he decided he needed some help (7:14 mark)...
To watch at Blueshirts United, click here.
...absolutely hysterical. What's ironic is that was the most comfortable and forthcoming I've seen Torts during a post game...
This morning John Tortorella briefly spoke with the media and said this about his team's chances in Game 3 tonight (via Washington Post)...
“I think we’re close, I’ll put it to you that way. But it means squat if you don’t win.
“I think [the games have] been a hell of a lot more even than a lot of other people think,” Tortorella said. “But it really doesn’t...
Rangers head coach John Tortorella has stated a few times that he thinks this series is closer than some believe and that his team has played well in a few areas, specifically with generating offense. That may have been true for Game One, but the Rangers had a lot of problems the next game and the truth is that they weren't very good last night either. They were able to keep...
The New York Rangers host the Washington Capitals at Madison Square Garden for Game 3 of their Eastern Conference Quarterfinals match-up starting at 7:30 p.m. The Capitals lead the series 2-0. For a preview go to Yahoo! Sports.
Rangers Game Notes
TV: MSG; Radio: ESPN Radio (98.7 FM), XM 212
Live Stream (Don't click on ads in stream, may download virus):