Found October 03, 2013 on Blue Seat Blogs:
How will Zuccarello fare this season? Today it all begins. The Rangers open their season today as the season, tone setting, nine game road trip gets under way tonight in Phoenix. Let’s jump straight into the first Musings of the new season. It will be interesting to see how Derek Stepan starts tonight. Will he be a step behind, will the lack of reps and preseason games and training camp and system implementation hurt him? He’s going to be under the microscope and has a lot of responsibility to shoulder. A player that could thrive under Alain Vigneault’s (apparently) more open system could be Michael Del Zotto. Like so many Rangers this is a big year for him. Is he finally going to put it all together and be a consistent offensive threat from the blueliner or does he become expendable after this season? A good year from MDZ likely means an improved Rangers PP. Most unpredictable player heading into tonight? Mats Zuccarello. Jesper Fast has nothing to lose. People were pencilling in Danny Kristo or Oscar Lindberg or Chris Kreider into the opening night roster but it’s Fast that gets the gig to begin the year. With Hagelin and Callahan out but expected back soon Fast is basically auditioning. With no huge expectancy but a lot of excitement about his development Fast has a chance to play fear free and go gung-ho. He’ll be one to watch to see how he adapts. The Coyotes have a good looking powerplay with Keith Yandle, Ekman Larsson, Ribeiro, Doan and the pesky Radim Vrbata. As is often the case, good discipline and keeping their PP off the board could be huge tonight. The Rangers struggled on special teams in the preseason, it will be important to just cope while Ryan Callahan and Carl Hagelin recover. I’m Intrigued to see JT Miller in action tonight. I don’t like him down on the fourth line but he has a chance to move up the depth chart if he carries on his preseason form. Initial league observations: The Toronto Maple Leafs have started well, something they usually do. The Capitals look like they will concede a lot this year. The Flyers won’t be a threat in the Metropolitan division. Questions Time: Who will produce more this season: Brassard or Richards? Who will be the Rangers top producing defenseman? First to 20: Callahan, Hagelin or Brassard? How many wins will Lundqvist get this season? What record would you be happy with from the 9 game road trip? Opening night prediction: Rangers win 3-2 in overtime. Brassard, Richards and Staal with the goals, special teams produce. Lets go Rangers! Tweet
THE BACKYARD
BEST OF MAXIM
RELATED ARTICLES

Callahan on IR; Hagelin on LTIR

As expected, the Rangers have made some formal roster moves to allow the roster to be at its current size. Captain Ryan Callahan has been placed on IR, where he must remain for seven days. Winger Carl Hagelin has been placed on LTIR, where he must remain for three weeks of ten games. Both moves are retroactive to September 30, meaning Cally will be able to return on October 6, in...

Season outlook for the New York Rangers

The past two years for the New York Rangers have been whimsically scripted. In 2011, a year after losing lamely to the Washington Capitals in the first round of the playoffs, little was expected of the Rangers entering the season. Save free agent acquisition Brad Richards, they were mostly the same team, which is to say Henrik Lundqvist and a lot of shot blockers. But the Rangers...

Improved depth may be the most important change this year

Darroll Powe is one of many options the Rangers have in Hartford Though the Rangers certainly can’t replace core players like Ryan Callahan and Carl Hagelin flawlessly, the organization does have substantially more quality depth this year.  Whereas last season New York was forced to call-up the likes of Kris Newbury, Benn Ferriero and Brandon Segal when AHL reinforcements were...

Predicting roster moves when Callahan, Hagelin return

J.T. Miller will need to force his way into a permanent spot in New York (Seth Wenig/AP) One question that has been brought up a lot recently is who the Rangers will waive or return to Hartford when Ryan Callahan and Carl Hagelin return to the lineup. Cally is aiming for a Monday return in LA, while Hagelin is currently on LTIR and will miss –at a minimum– the first ten games...

2013 preseason Vezina trophy watch list

  The Vezina Trophy is given to the National Hockey League’s most exceptional goaltender. Last year, Sergei Bobrovsky of the Columbus Blue Jackets was awarded this coveted piece of hardware. Bobrovsky won the Vezina by putting up statistics including a 21-11-6 record, and career highs in both goals against average (GAA) at 2.00 and a .932 save percentage. To make his way atop...

Expectancy for Rick Nash greater than ever

Rick Nash is facing a huge amount of pressure. Starting Thursday As the Rangers prepare to open their season on Thursday against the Phoenix Coyotes, they will do so missing two of their presumptive top six forwards and with their de facto top line center behind the eight ball thanks to Derek Stepan’s (partial) holdout. Throw in the continued struggles of the likes of Chris Kreider...

Losing relationship with Richards ‘kills’ Tortorella

John Tortorella and Brad Richards won a Stanley Cup together with the Lightning but their time together with the Rangers ended with the star center benched. Tortorella told TSN the deterioration of that relationship was the only regret he had from his time with the Rangers which ended in his firing at the end of last season. “It kills me. It kills me” Tortorella now the coach...

Alain Vigneault inherits big challenges in his first season as coach

Alain Vigneault already has “a Lincoln Tunnel story.” Let’s just say it involves a wrong turn by a man living on the upper West Side of a new city. “I’m embarrassed” Vigneault 52 said last week in his former home of Vancouver. Living adjustments are normal although especially in the Big Apple. Vigneault’s bigger challenge in his first season as Rangers head coach...

Jan Levine: Rangers Kick Off Season in Phoenix, Team and League Predictions

The wait is over…no not that one, the one for the Rangers' season to start. After a disappointing loss to the Bruins in the Eastern Conference Semis that helped lead to the firing of John Tortorella and hiring of Alain Vigneault followed by a relatively low-key, in terms of player movement, off-season, the Blueshirts 2013-14 season kicks off tonight in Phoenix. With nine...

Rangers’ lone goal comes on power play

If the Rangers were going to score one goal in their season opener as they did in Thursday’s 4-1 defeat to the Coyotes it’s probably just as well for their mental condition that it came as it did on the power play. “I thought we moved the puck well and created some good opportunities” said Marc Staal who got the power-play goal by roofing one from the left circle to beat...

Coyote ugly: Rangers flop in season-opening loss

The Rangers sure have a lot of improving to do — and quickly — following Thursday night’s opening 4-1 defeat to the Coyotes in which sloppiness prevailed at both ends of the ice. “We just made too many mistakes regarding the way we have to play no matter who’s the coach that has nothing to do with it” Brad Richards told The Post following Alain Vigneault’s debut behind...

NHL Metro Division Preview: New York Rangers

We will do a team preview every day up until the season opener.  Today we will cover the New York Rangers.  Predicted to finish 2nd in the Metro Division.  Check out our other previews here. 2012-13: 26-18-4-56 6th in the East.  Lost in Conference Semi Finals 4-1 vs. Boston. Key Additions:  C Dominic Moore, LW Benoit Pouliot, D Justin Falk, D Aaron Johnson, D Danny Syvret...

Jan Levine: Game 1: PHX 4 NYR 1, Lots of Work In Own Zone Required

The Rangers' initially foray under new coach Alain Vigneault was clearly not one for the record books or memory banks. Too many defensive breakdowns and uneven play contributed to the 4-1 loss to Phoenix on Thursday. Part of the defensive breakdowns can be attributed to the change in style, but in several cases, they were outhustled or pushed off the puck. In addition, Henrik...

BSB partners with NY Believe

We here at Blue Seat Blogs are proud to announce our partnership with NY Believe for the upcoming season. NY Believe (company Twitter here)  is a New York sports apparel company run by two lovely ladies, Jenny/Rebel Princess and Stefanie, that specializes in sports apparel for all nine local sports teams. They already have some great options available for the Rangers, Mets,...

Video- A “New Supreme Leader On The Ice” In Vancouver

CBC with a feature on John Tortorella,  
NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

Today's Best Stuff
For Bloggers

Join the Yardbarker Network for more promotion, traffic, and money.

Company Info
Help
What is Yardbarker?

Yardbarker is the largest network of sports blogs and pro athlete blogs on the web. This site is the hub of the Yardbarker Network, where our editors and algorithms curate the best sports content from our network and beyond.