Rangers Analysis: Season Falls on Management

With the Rangers shootout loss, administered at the hands of the Philadelphia Flyers last night, the season ends with Madison Square Garden empty and vacant in late April for the first time since the lockout. Last night's game was pretty much a carbon copy of what's wrong with this team, and why they didn't succeed this season. But the Rangers missing the playoffs isn't what I'm mad about, it's the aftermath.

You see, no Ranger fan is happy today. Those that wanted the Rangers to tank in order to get a good pick don't get their wish. And those of us that would have liked to see the Rangers make the playoffs don't get our wish either. This is why I had such a big problem with the Rangers not making any moves at the deadline (weather it was them buying or selling), because we weren't a playoff team back then, we also weren't a taking team back then. What yesterday proved is that the Rangers are a team in limbo, continuously drifting back and forth from mediocrity to "just okay."

Allow me just a moment to talk about the season, before I go into what happens next. I think that it was fitting that Olli Jokinen was the last one to touch the puck on the biggest shot of the season. It continuously validates that the mis-management of this team, mis-management that has costed the Rangers a playoff berth this year, will come back to haunt them again and again unless it's changed.

John Tortorella's regime has been filled with nothing but failed promises and embarrassing outbursts. This team, for all the hype, had the same problems they had last year. This go-go offensive system produced just as many goals as Tom Renney's defense first system did last year. Renney consistently focused on his veterans' and refused to hold players accountable, Tortorella promised that that would not be the case, but it was. You know the only difference between the two coaches? The Rangers were winners with Renney, they are losers with Tortorella.  



Join me after the jump for more.

For those of you that expect change, I'll have to take an: "I'll believe it when I see it" attitude. Mainly because this was supposed to be the year for change. A new coach, finally a legitimate sniper, tons of youth all over this team, and the belief that the coach was going to keep the veterans in check and hold people accountable no matter how many zeroes they had on the end of their check.

Well we saw none of that. Wade Redden was only benched for two games throughout the season; while Enver Lisin, Matt Gilroy, Chris Higgins (while he was here), and Brandon Dubinsky(in the beginning of the year) were the main outlets of his wrath. I completely agree that Anders Eriksson was better suited for these games than Matt Gilroy, but to be honest I would have much rather had Gilroy back there then Redden.  

Unfortunately Tortorella will not be punished for the atrocities he committed this season with this team.

I don't know how long Tortorella would have lasted in another organization this season, especially with the way he treats the media. But taking into consideration that Glen Sather would be firing the 6th coach of his tenure, which is ridiculous, I think that Tortorella will get a larger leash than he probably deserves.

It's not as though anyone can ask Sather these questions. I don't believe he has a conference call scheduled for the press this year. Also don't bank on hearing anything from James Dolan anytime soon, if he has let this go on for this long what's to stop him from doing it again?

Basically I am telling you all that missing the playoffs isn't the worst thing about this season. It's about the fact that even in disarray, even in complete failure, this team will see no changes. I hope I'm wrong, I pray I'm wrong, but previous examples have again and again engraved themselves into my mind. This is Rangers hockey. Not respect, not loyalty; it's sticking our heads into the sand and hoping that problems go away without anyone doing anything about it.

I guess it's hard to hold a team responsible when no one is accountable.

On a side note here. Last week was my one year anniversary of me joining Blueshirt Banter. I'm sorry that it didn't come at a better time, or on a better note, but alas what can I do? What I do want to do is tell all of you that this has been a wonderful experience, one that has truly changed the way I think about things. You have all been fantastic to me, and I can't thank you enough for everything you have done for this website and for this team (even if they don't know it).

I consider this website to be a part of me, and I know Jim does too. And every day you all fill it with life and give us a reason to be proud of it. Thank you for that, you'll never know how much it means to us. So with that, goodbye 2009-2010 season, you won't be missed and you sure as hell won't be forgotten.

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