Found May 22, 2012 on
New York Rangers
New Jersey Devils
One of the characteristics that has defined this edition of the New York Rangers has been their collective buoyancy. With the Eastern Conference Final now a best-of-3, Rangers coach John Tortorella believes mental toughness will once again come to the forefront.
"We're one of four teams still playing," Tortorella said Tuesday afternoon following the Rangers' practice at Madison Square Garden. "You have to remember when we're trying to win two in a row, there's also a team trying not to lose two in a row, and it's a pretty good team at this stage of the season.
"Like I said last night, I feel really good about our approach today and how we're going to go about our business tomorrow."
The two aspects of his team's game in which Tortorella would like to see improvement are puck possession and goal scoring. New Jersey has simply controlled the puck better throughout the first four games of the series.
"We don't have the puck enough," Tortorella said. "Jersey has the puck a lot more minutes than we do. I think that's something we need to try to change. It's a combination of a number of things. It's getting out of your end clean. It's holding on to pucks in their end when they have opportunities. It comes just within your play. There's no one particular thing. But it has been a series so far of them having the puck a lot more than we have. That's what we're going to try to change.
"It's tactical, execution [and] willingness. All sorts of things come into play as far as territory and puck possession. It's just a simple fact. We need to get better at it."
Tortorella wouldn't mind seeing his high-end offensive forwards begin to put the puck in the net either. The Rangers have scored nine goals in the four games. Chris Kreider (three goals) and Dan Girardi (two goals) have five of the Rangers' goals. Artem Anisimov, Marc Staal, Ryan Callahan and Ruslan Fedotenko have a goal apiece. The goals scored by Anisimov and Callahan were empty-netters.
So, what is the strategy for getting production out of the top line of Marian Gaborik, Brad Richards and Carl Hagelin, who have combined for no goals and three assists in the four games?
"Pray," Tortorella said. "I don't know what else to tell you. We're going to keep on trying to play, pray and hopefully something good happens to them."
- Devils coach Pete DeBoer heard tales of the New York Rangers-New Jersey Devils rivalry while coaching the Ontario [Junior] Hockey League's Kitchener Rangers and the NHL's Florida Panthers. Now, in his first year as coach of the Devils, in the midst of his first playoff series against their rivals, DeBoer is getting an on-the-job indoctrination about how intense the games against the Rangers are.
"It's exactly what I had heard it was and what I anticipated it would be," DeBoer said during a conference call Tuesday, a day off for his squad. "I don't want to use words like 'hate.' The rivalry is what I expected it to be. I'd heard about it and it's lived up to its billing.
"Every league you coach in there's rivalries like that. [Kitchener] had rivalries with [OHL] Guelph [Storm] where my assistant coach Dave Barr coached and Dale Hunter coached half an hour up the road [in London, Ontario, with the OHL's London Knights] from where we were. So the type of emotion that's involved is the same. The only difference is you've got 10 million people here."
Monday night's Game 4 was highlighted by a shouting match between DeBoer and Tortorella. The day after, DeBoer's players praised him for, as Martin Brodeur said, being "really into" the emotional component that defines the playoff season.
"He's got a fire, no doubt," Brodeur said. "It's nice to see for the guys."
Added Zach Parise: "We know how much of a competitor he is. He cares about his players and he cares about winning. So I think it's great to see when your coach is involved in that and cares like that. I don't know if something just happened to push him over the edge last night and that's fine with us. We know that he cares about us and cares about the team."
You can follow Denis Gorman on Twitter @DenisGorman
BEST OF MAXIM
John Tortorella and Pete Deboer had their first run-in during the regular season when Deboer sent out a starting lineup of goons to set the tone in a regular season game between the Rangers and Devils at Madison Square Garden on March 19. Tortorella was provoked to the point where he grabbed the stick from the hands of Brad Richards, stormed over to the end of the bench and hacked...
Head coach John Tortorella actually stuck around to give an insightful postgame press conference following last night's 5-3 loss to the New Jersey Devils at MSG, so I thought I'd share this landmark event. Plus, there's not much else to say after what went down last night and what needs to be done in Game 6.
Will have any significant updates from practice later...
With the hockey playoffs on going, and BMR's coverage admittedly faltering a bit, I decided we needed a big get. And I got one! I got an interview with New York Rangers' coach John Tortarella before tonight's game! The full transcrips are below:BMR: Coach, it seems as though you get stressed out during the post season. Would you say that the post season is more challenging...
LEADERS OF MEN
Rangers tough guy (and one time New Jersey Devils' hero) Mike Rupp (6'5", 230 lbs) punches Marty Brodeur in the pec/shoulder/facemask after running and jumping into Devils defenseman Peter Harrold... Full story at Bob's Blitz ~ http://www.bobsblitz.com
The question posed to John Tortorella at his Monday morning press briefing at Madison Square Garden was about which skater would replace the suspended Brandon Prust in the lineup for Game 4 of the Eastern Conference finals.
Tortorella's answer? He had no answer.
"I don't know what my lineup is," Tortorella said when asked if Stu Bickel could play forward.
John Tortorella took pointed shots Sunday at the New Jersey Devils, accusing them of various uncalled infractions in the first three games of the Eastern Conference finals. But Tortorella's team, the New York Rangers, had a recurring problem of their own throughout these playoffs resurface in a series-tying 4-1 loss Monday night in Newark. The Rangers now have had seven...
John Tortorella discusses the Rangers' Game 5 loss and the team's back being to the wall heading back to Newark...
For players reaction to Game 5 defeat, click the "Read More" tab below.
Players know the Rangers are up against after the Blueshirts' 5-3 Game 5 loss...
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The display put on by the New York Rangers in Saturday's Game 3 at the Prudential Center was less than satisfactory. Mentally, the team did not arrive until very late in the second period when head coach John Tortorella was forced to call a timeout in order to get his squad in line before they fell into a hole they would be unable to climb out of. Yet, because of the superhuman...
from Katie Strang of ESPN New York, The closest thing to a guarantee from the Rangers heading into a do-or-die Game 6 against the Devils on Friday?
Coach John Tortorella’s prediction about his star goaltender Henrik Lundqvist’s impending performance:
“He’ll play his best game tomorrow night,” Tortorella proclaimed.
A later line of questioning prompted Tortorella to...
The John Tortorella thing just keeps getting better. Before Game 4 - and after he embarrassed himself, his organization and the league with his press-conference performances - Lord Torts suddenly found a use for the media when his player, Brandon Prust, was facing a suspension
Just like that, The Great Man turned into Winston Churchill. He talked about the Devils’ many crimes...
What might have been just a simmering feud burst into full blown gamesmanship, and likely a little bit of hate, yesterday when coach John Tortorella accused the Devils of embellishing when checked/hit by the Rangers and staying down when they could get up as well as their use of a pick play to free up space, as seen on the PPG by Ilya Kovalchuk in Game 2. In addition, he highlighted...
Last night the New Jersey Devils came out flying, capitalized on some scoring chances early and didn't look back as they went on to defeat the Rangers 4-1 to tie the series at two wins a piece. Here are some notes on the game.
- I'll start with the Pete DeBoer - John Tortorella incident as that's what is getting all the talk right now. From DeBoer's perspective...
from Neil Best of Newsday, Pierre McGuire, NBC’s “Inside the Glass” hockey reporter, declined Tuesday to go beyond what he shared with his TV audience about the Game 4 argument between coaches John Tortorella of the Rangers and Peter DeBoer of the Devils - which wasn’t much.
“They weren’t having an amiable conversation about what they were going to do for dinner in the...
To watch at NHL.com, click here.Meanwhile, Ken Daneyko, Dave Maloney, Billy Jaffe and Al Trautwig give their thoughts on what John Tortorella and Peter DeBoer have to impart on to their teams heading into the pivotal Game 4...
To view video of Henrik Lundqvist discussing tonight's Game 4 as well as Brandon Dubinsky on his injury and Brandon Prust on his suspension...
The LA Kings defeated the Phoenix Coyotes 4-3 in Overtime last night to win the Clarence Campbell Bowl that is awarded to the Western Conference Champions. The Kings won the Western Conference Final in 5 games & never really faced a challenge from the Pacific Division Champion Coyotes.
In the conference semi-finals, the Kings swept the Central Division Champion...