Rangers Analysis (aka Rant): Seriously, What Now?

Authors Note: Sorry for no attempt at paragraphs and such, but why should I try to write seriously when the team I support, follow, and love can't even complete the simplest of hockey plays (I'M LOOKING AT YOU, ROZIVAL - STEP UP ON YOUR MAN - EVERYONE LEARNS THAT IN PEE-WEES).

"I'm not gonna go into assessment of players right now, thank you." - John Tortorella

  • This is why, amongst all the BS that is going on right now, John Tortorella deserves to keep his job. Torts gets it, and he puts it so plainly and perfectly that how can you be mad at him? If Tortorella gets fired at any time during this season, the whole front office of the Rangers should be fired with him, including Messier.
  • I, like Torts, am not going to get into player evaluations either. The locker-room has to be a mess, and I think for the first time in a while Chris Drury doesn't know what to do. I feel especially bad for Henrik Lundqvist, who is giving arguably the most effort of his career and is getting jack for it. If Lundqvist requested a trade tomorrow, I really don't know if I could be mad at him with what has happened recently.
  • I know I try to be the guy around here who doesn't act like the typical New Yorker where one loss and the sky is falling, but I beg the question of how long does Glen Sather and the Ranger organization sit on their hands and hope for the best? If the Rangers don't turn this around by Christmas, we might as well become sellers at the deadline and dive for the draft (which isn't a sure thing this year, that's for sure). I would rather see a plan presented and implemented then trying to rebuild the team every off-season.

Keep reading for more thoughts I managed to put on paper Monday night.

  •  This leads me to the FUN topic of the Rangers front office. Why are they so invisible from scrutiny and the potential of losing their jobs? I've been saying it for a couple of seasons now to my buddies, but the Rangers need fresh young blood in the office. I would like to find the hockey version of Theo Epstein, to be honest. The Rangers can't try to be the Yankees of the NHL anymore because of how "fair" Bettman has made the league. I want a GM who will use advanced statistics and knows every player inside and out. I want to see bang for the buck players in Ranger blue alongside Gaborik scoring a goal per game or more.
  • Speaking of Bettman, everyone needs to read this post by Tom Benjamin regarding the salary cap restrictions. I agree with him wholeheartedly that although the salary cap era has made for great parity, I just hate how no team can distinguish itself into a dynasty. Call me crazy, I guess.
  • Again, off topic, but if anyone feels bad for Alex Ovechkin possibly being injured, I can't really sympathize with you. Check out this screenshot I took about when the Ranger game ended on Monday night. Clearly, he has got his knee out. He has gotten away with some stuff in the past, and I'm not saying this is bad karma, but it is what it is.
  • Ok, I'm calming down a bit now. The season isn't over, and it's not like the Rangers are moving to Kansas City. I just hate seeing a dejected John Tortorella and Henrik Lundqvist not knowing what to say. No one is to really blame. The boys played a hard game for two and a half periods against one of the best teams in the league, hands down. Poor bounces and poor decisions have plagued the Rangers for almost two weeks now, and we have to wonder how long can it last?
  • I will say this one last time for the season. The Rangers NEED control the pace and play of the game. This does not mean they don't give up chances, it just means that for every chance the other team gets, the Rangers get at least one if not two. For every minute the Rangers spend in their zone they need to spend two in the opposing teams' zone. Marion Gaborik cannot support this team, as much as he has come damn close to doing so, and the only way for support players like Callahan, Higgins, Avery, Kotalik, and Lisin to start chipping in points is to spend as much possible time in the opposing teams' zone. This sounds so ridiculously simple, but that is what the Rangers built; a simple well-skating team that can be beat on simple plays like odd and even-man rushes that have plagued the Blueshirts all season.

So that's that. Now that everyone has had a full day off to calm down, what are you thinking now? Still stuck on one or two issues? Still dumbfounded and don't know where to start? Talk it out in the comments.

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