Found April 25, 2012 on
Blue Seat Blogs:
New York Rangers
In last night’s 3-2 victory that sent the series to a seventh game, Stu Bickel was nowhere to be found. In fact, he only played three shifts the entire game for less than two minutes of ice time. In the Rangers 2-0 loss in Game Five, Bickel played just seven shifts for less than five minutes of ice time. Game Four? Seven shifts for 3:33 of ice time. Game Three? Ten and 9:18. Game Two? Six and 3:40. His first ever playoff game? Eight and 6:42.
Total all that together, and you get 41 shifts for roughly 32 minutes of ice time. Bickel is getting about as much time as Mike Rupp. John Tortorella is rolling five defensemen right now, and it makes you wonder why.
Bickel was one of the coach’s favorite defensemen during the season. Bickel saw time on the top four while Marc Staal was working his way back to regular playing time. With Staal fully healthy and back to at least 85% of his former self, compounded with the emergence of Anton Stralman as an apparent offensive and defensive force, Bickel has been seeing more pine than a dendrophiliac.
It makes you wonder if and when someone like Steve Eminger –who is healthy enough to play– will get a shot in the lineup. It’s not like Bickel is bringing anything other than some intimidation to the bench. But intimidation only means something if you play. Just ask John Scott how long his intimidation factor lasted with the Rangers.
Prior to Game Six, when the Rangers looked like they were running around in their own zone, you have to question why Torts didn’t at least try to dress someone with more foot speed than Bickel. Was Eminger just not ready? Surely the Rangers would have benefited from at least dressing him a game to see what they have. It’s not like they are really sacrificing ice time, reliability, or chemistry (that we know of). What Eminger lacks in physicality he makes up for in foot speed, at least when you compare him to the now pine-riding Bickel.
Every single forward has more ice time than Bickel, including Rupp. That speaks volumes when there are twice as many forwards as there are defensemen. The top five on the Rangers appear more than willing to play the full 60 minutes –well, 58 minutes.
Maybe it has to do with the fact that this series has been played at even strength for about 50% of the series, and there haven’t been many opportunities to get Bickel out there at even strength.
Maybe it has to do with matchups. Dan Girardi and Ryan McDonagh must be out there for the Jason Spezza line. Marc Staal and Anton Stralman must be out there for any combination of Kyle Turris, Chris Neil, and any other scoring threat. Bickel could only be getting ice time against the Senators fourth line, but even they are seeing twice amount of ice as Bickel.
So again, what is the point of dressing him right now? Is there anything lost in seeing what Eminger can do?
BEST OF MAXIM
Prior to Monday's Game 6 in Ottawa, Rangers forward Derek Stepan had zero points in five playoff games this season. His decision making was off, he struggled when passing the puck and he had very little confidence to shoot, especially on the powerplay. Quickly he saw a decrease in ice time from head coach John Tortorella, which is obviously going to be the consequence when you...
… Chris Kreider played a phenomenal game for a rookie in just his 4th game on the NHL surface. The role Kreider played in the 2nd and 3rd periods were huge for the New York Rangers. This kid really is the future of the organization. Ryan McDonagh also played a lot better tonight and came [...]
To the surprise of no one (hence the sarcastic title), the National Hockey League has announced that New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist has been named a finalist for the 2011-12 Vezina Trophy, which is awarded to the League's best goaltender during the regular season. This is the fourth time in Lundqvist's seven-year career that he has been named a finalist for...
John Tortorella looks forward to having home ice advantage in Game 7...
To watch at MSG.com, click here.For the players thoughts on Game 7 against the Senators, click the "Read More" tab below.
Henrik Lundqvist talks to the media after practice about how the Rangers stepped up to win Game 6, carrying the momentum into a home Game 7 and being named a finalist for...
In the hours before his fourth NHL game and first Game 7, Chris Kreider discusses his comfort level in the professional game (NHL.com)..."I'm more and more comfortable and things start coming second nature. It's being in the defensive zone and being a little bit more aware of what you're supposed to be doing and where you're supposed to be."If you can get...
During his conference call yesterday, John Tortorella gave this comment on his impressions of Chris Kreider's performance up until this point (via Bergen Record)..."The thing that impressed me the most about him right now in just a couple of days being with him is forget what's on the ice, it's how he's handled the situation. I'm sure there's a letdown...
By Bob Crawford
That the Connecticut Whale swept division-champion Bridgeport, a team that had played better than .700 hockey since the turn of the New Year, was surprising enough. That they did it without their regular-season scoring leader, Kris Newbury, registering a point, and with second-leading scorer Jonathan Audy-Marchessault being held to one goal, borders on amazing...
Pat Leonard at the Daily News reports that Ryan Callahan (finger) participated in this morning's skate, however, Brian Boyle (concussion) did not.Arthur Staple at Newsday says Boyle was seen riding a stationary bike this morning, but is not close to returning....figured Callahan would be ready to go. Don't like hearing that Boyle isn't even close to returning. Hopefully...
Henrik Lundqvist was upset with the controversial late goal by the Senators last night and spoke about it post-game.
I don’t know about you, but my feelings are the Rangers won the game, brush the goal off and move on.
Instead, Lundqvist went in the opposite direction.
The New York Rangers will be hosting game 7 against the Ottawa Senators after defeating the Sens 3-2.
Chris Kreider, with his firat NHL goal, had the game winner.
added 10:08pm, Not that it matters now, but below watch the controversial Ottawa goal late in the 3rd period to bring the Senators within one goal of the Rangers… What do you think about it?
Continue reading "...
About fifteen minutes into Game 6 between the New York Rangers and the Ottawa Senators, it became more of a WWE match than a hockey game. Somehow, in the middle of his tussle with Rangers’ forward Brandon Prust, Chris Neil of the Senators signals the crowd to “get loud” while still trying to fight Prust. Check it out:
PROGRAMMING ALERT – April 25, 2012—The NBC Sports Network will air a Conference Quarterfinal Game 7 double-header on Thursday night with support coverage provided by the NHL Network. The NHL announced the schedule for the final two games of the Conference Quarterfinals earlier today.
Coverage of the Ottawa Senators-New York Rangers Game 7 from Madison Square Garden in New York...
For their next installment in their popular gaming franchise, EA Sports has opted to let fans ultimately decide which NHL player they want to adorn the cover of NHL 13. By creating a 60-player tournament bracket in which every organization was represented by two players, EA Sports has encouraged fans to get out and vote for their favorite player(s). I'm assuming that EA created...
By Christopher Decker (@HockeyGuy_Chris)
Not many expected the Rangers to be in the situation they are currently in, which is in a Game 7 Eastern Conference Quarterfinals match up against the eighth and lowest seeded playoff contenders: the Ottawa Senators. But that is exactly where they find themselves. One team will be going home tonight. And if it’s the Rangers, the...
Yesterday, we asked you, the fans, who you did or did not want the Flyers to play in Round 2 of the 2012 NHL Playoffs. We promised that we would post our favorite comments onto the site in an article just like this one. We were originally going to post one unique comment per team, but we figured we would put as many as we could.
These comments were mainly from yesterday before...