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2013 New York Rangers Season Preview: Three Big Questions

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The three biggest questions surrounding the Rangers season.

Derek Leung

1. How do the Rangers react to a new coach and a new system?

This is a question that's going to take some time to answer. So far in the preseason? Not so well, but that's to be expected. This system is a drastic change from last year and it's going to take the players some time to get used to it. What we have seen has been encouraging, though. The Rangers defenseman are joining the rush, the forwards are crashing the net and the Rangers are actually making offensive adjustments when things aren't working.

It hasn't exactly lead to great results in the preseason, but things have gotten better. Plus, the Rangers had a week between games at one point during the preseason, so the team hasn't had a real opportunity to play at "full strength" yet. We might have to wait until Opening Night to see that for the first time.

2. Brad Richards has a shot at redemption. Will he succeed in New York?

Succeed is a relative term. If by succeed you mean earn a roster spot beyond this season? Unlikely. In this new-age NHL players with contracts like Richards are far too risky to keep on the roster long term. And unfortunately, with the Rangers only opportunity to demolish that contract coming this summer, it's unlikely last year's performance will be forgotten (regardless of what he does this year).

3. Is Marc Staal truly symptom free from his injury?

This is one of the questions we can answer from the preseason. Staal has looked like the Staal of old. There were a lot of rumors floating around this summer about Staal's career potentially being over, especially since he himself admitted his eye would never be fully healthy ever again.

But a big part of his recovery was getting used to his eye as it is now. And he's done that. He's using a special visor (I don't know the full details, but the tint is important here) and he's been one of the Rangers best (and most consistent) player in the preseason. I think it's very safe to say he's back to form.