Sunday Bantering Points: Injuries Didn't Doom John Tortorella Edition

Bruce Bennett

Some Bantering Points on this lazy Sunday morning.

- So Ryan Callahan and Carl Hagelin had surgery for identical injuries, giving New York Rangers fans a glimpse at some of the injuries the team was dealing with during the playoffs. I knew something was wrong with Callahan, but the Hagelin injury surprised me.

- I've seen some people say they didn't think Tortorella would have been fired because Callahan and Hagelin obviously weren't playing at 100%. I don't buy it. Tortorella's firing went deeper than the team's success, it was a matter of what was going on in the room. Yes, if the Rangers won the Stanley Cup there wouldn't have been a coaching change, but things weren't right below the surface, so I don't think anything other than the Cup would have changed the way things happened.

- The Rangers are planning on taking some time when it comes to their next coach, but Glen Sather is on the record for wanting to fill the job by the draft.

- Apparently -- and again, we're going off of what little information is trickling out right now -- Mark Messier is considering whether or not he wants to seriously peruse the open coaching job. He's interested, but he isn't sure if he's ready for the commitment yet. This is something worth keeping an eye on.

- Wayne Gretzky is also apparently interested in the coaching job. This isn't much to go on, but Gretzky was at Game 3 of the Rangers second round series against Boston.

- So far the Rangers have openly targeted Dallas Eakins and Alain Vigneault. There was some talk that the Rangers were also going to look into Lindy Ruff but to this point that either hasn't happened or the Rangers are keeping their interest in him quiet.

- Both Eakins and Vigneault have garnered a ton of attention from other teams looking for coaches. Just something to keep an eye on. I doubt Sather is going to allow himself to be rushed, but it's something to keep an eye on.

- Eakins is slowly moving into a guy I really want to look into. It's a bit of a risk but he's done some magical things for the Toronto Marlies in the AHL even with a depleted roster.

- Just watching the Penguins start against Boston makes me wonder what the Rangers could do with a more offensively aggressive system. And watching the Bruins finish really proves how important depth can be.

- Some people think Tortorella will find a new job sooner rather than later. I'm not so sure. I think the media's celebration of him being fired (which I don't think is fair at all, but what can you do?) would make it a PR nightmare to hire him. I do think he'll pick up a job someplace, but not right away.

Thoughts?

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