On Thursday evening, the Rangers announced the discouraging news that their heart-and-soul captain is expected to miss three-to-four weeks due to a broken thumb.
Let’s be clear. What the Rangers are going through isn’t an effort issue. They’re struggling to understand Vigneault’s concept of uptempo hockey that also requires sound positioning.
While medical science has progressed, true progress has yet to be made by the league regarding headshots. Players are still targeting the heads of fellow professionals, and are only receiving small bans for their actions.
The Rangers defeated the Los Angeles Kings, 3-1, on Monday night at Staples Center. Richards was front and center in Vigneault’s first victory as head coach of the Blueshirts as he scored two of three Rangers goals.
A number of prospects including Marek Hrivik, Danny Kristo and Connor Allen could crack the Rangers’ opening-night roster.
After putting his team through the paces, Vigneault spoke of his excitement to be to working with “elite” winger Rick Nash.
Lundqvist would probably trade in all of his endorsement deals, give away closets full of designer suits and hand over the keys to his Maserati in an instant if it meant he could take one sip from Lord Stanley’s Cup.
Vigneault needs to do what comes naturally for him, and that means developing offensive creativity on a team that’s been nearly bereft of that commodity.
Vigneault is ready to breathe fresh life into the Rangers. It’s going to be a new era of exciting, offensively-expressive hockey now that Vigneault is replacing John Tortorella behind the Blueshirts’ bench.
Vigneault may not be a breath of fresh air, but he’s not the restrictive leader that Tortorella was and that’s good news for the Rangers.
The Rangers fired combative coach John Tortorella on Wednesday, four days after New York was eliminated from the Stanley Cup playoffs.
This city offers Henrik Lundqvist everything he desires. He isn’t going to turn his back and throw it all away.
So what happened to the New York Rangers? Did they take a step back this year? Well, coach John Tortorella says no, but the correct answer — from goalie Henrik Lundqvist — is yes.
While Tortorella didn’t want to use injuries as an excuse, the Rangers were severely hampered by a number of key injuries.
The Blueshirts are very far from being a perfect hockey club – but they’re even further from being branded as a common, run-of-the-mill team.