Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Damn it Feels Good To Be a Ranga'

What's up all you Ranger fans out there, I am a band-spankin' new blogger for all us devoted, die hard Blueshirt wearing fans of New York City's finest, NYR(PD).   Next season, the Rangers can look forward to success, that's right, you heard it here on The Dark Ranger first, I am gonna go out on a very, very far limb and say that our beloved New York Rangers will win the Atlantic Division title next season.  I know it's a bit early to say this, but with the players they have, it is simply inevitable to have this group succeed and reign over the teams they will face.  Gomez, Drury, Naslund, Zherdev, Prucha, Dubinsky.  Those are the main scoring threats on the Rangers, and any of the other 29 NHL teams would be more than happy to have them on their first or second lines.  It is imperative that these talented forwards lead the entire team with their goal scoring abilities, as the rest of the bench will simply ride their wave of success.  With all the amassed 3rd and 4th liners on the Rangers roster, it is essential that the main group of guys hustle night in and night out, never leave anything on the ice and always play with heart and desire.  With that being said, the Ranger's will have one of the strongest depth charts in the NHL (especially with all of the prospects in Hartford: Sanguinetti, Grachev, Anisimov, Cherepanov). 

Redden, Roszival, Stall, Kalinin, Mara, Girardi.  This is a tough, mobile group that is standing in front of one of the NHL's elite goaltenders in Henrik Lundqvist, who is just beginning his already celebrated NHL career (3 time Vezina finalist in his first 3 seasons!).  Not only do we have the KING, but we have the JOKER as well, as funny-man Stephan Valliquette is more than able to cover for Henrik when he's needed, giving the Rangers yet another piece to an already tastyyyy pie. With a team that packs such a swell 1-2 punch in both offensive scoring threats and defensive coverage, including goaltending, the Rangers should be a shoe-in for the playoffs, TO SAY THE LEAST!!  Of course, there have been Ranger teams in the past who have had such expectations as these and who have crumbled (2000-2004), but with many players on the roster under 25, the will to win is greater than ever.  If all goes to plan and the likes of Dawes, Callahan, Prucha, Zherdev (especially Zherdev) and Naslund find their scoring touch, there's no doubt that the Rangers would be a serious Cup Contender.  That being said, if those players don't in fact mature and score a minimum 20-25+ goals, than New York will be up shit's creek without a paddle.  If Lundqvist plays the way he has been, the defense is just as good if not better than last year's squad, and the players that need to lead (Gomez and Drury) come to play every single night, than the sky is truly the limit for the Rangers. 

I am no hockey expert, let me say that.  I am not Larry Brooks or Steve Zipay or Sam Weinman (Even though I am 30 years younger than all of them, at least!)  But I have played competitive ice hockey my whole life, I have coached teams to winning seasons, refereed and even water boyed a few times.  I watch every game, follow every player and know these coaches and GM's better than they know themselves.  I am connected throughout the world of hockey and I know how the system works.  The Rangers WILL be a team to beat next year, you can count on that, and if the magic does in fact exist and the Rangers harness the talent that has been brought together by GM Glen Sather (whom, by the way, I happen to think did a terrific job restructuring this organization) then New Yorkers should look forward to a parade down Broadway soon, and I mean soon.  The time has come for Lundqvist to win his first Stanley Cup, to bring hockey back to the city that bleeds Blue, to believe in our Blueshirt Boys and throw them our full support and to foresee the future:  the future that will have the names of players such as Ryan Callahan, Marc Staal, Dan Girardi, Petr Prucha, Brandon Dubinsky and of course Henrik Lundqvist to have their names etched onto Lord Stanley's Cup.  I believe that time is coming, and it's coming soon.

My take on what Tom Renney's lines should look like opening night:

O:  Zherdev-Gomez-Naslund



Voros/Rissmiller-Betts-Fritsche/Betts (Dan Fritsche can play either wing or center)

D:  Redden-Staal



G:  Lundqvist


            Happy trails..




  1. Where to begin? SYR11...I like the site and I guess you are part of the Dark team. We've all been down this road before and I have learned one important thing going into any new season.


    And I'm sure Detroit is incredibly jealous of our Dubinsky line... ;)

    Good luck and keep it real!

  2. way to go syr11, I like your style and I think you got the lines in shape to make legitimate cup run. I love Dark Land and hope to see more stuff from you..

    keep up the good work guys and welcome syr'11!

  3. syr 11, i really like the new punch that your writing include...it's in-depth, but light-hearted enough where i'm not just reading another annoying post about some guy throwing up his knowledge onto paper...hope to hear more soon

  4. TDR. what are you doing hiring an obvious drunk???

  5. Welcome SYR'11. Ive been reading this site religiously and your hockey knowledge and input will be a great asset to the site. Now we just need for Renney to read your line up and we'll be in business!

    Good luck and keep posting.

  6. Hello Syr11,

    Way to go on joining The Dark Ranger. I would like to send you some money to be used towards whatever extensive therapy you’re taking. I am a big Rangers fan but live on a plant called Earth!
    The NYR will make the playoffs and be a cup threat this season but have some serious holes to address.
    The young forwards must continue to grow with the extra responsibility on their backs and stop taking penalties at crucial moments in the game. The defense looks better this year with the addition by subtraction in Malik.
    I agree with you 100% SYR11 in one comment however..."I am no hockey expert” TRUE TRUE and TRUE.
    The top 6 players you refer to that any of the other 29 teams would love on their top 2 lines are Naslund (aging star who will be pressed to score 30 goals ever again) Drury (great leader and wonderful second line center) Zherdev (never scored 30 goals - floats - always a trade rumor with him) - Gomez (a first line center in the NHL but doesn't hit or score - will win a cup in his career as a second line center)
    Prucha and Dubinski couldn't crack the top two lines in Tampa, Pittsburg, Philly, Ottawa, Carolina, Boston, Detroit, Dallas, Chicago, Colorado, Calgary and maybe the Ducks (they still have Temmu to resign)

    Please think clearly and say no to drugs!


  7. I don't think zherdev is going to play on the same line as naslund. I think Renney is going to look to spread them out. I can see the first line being dawes-gomez-zherdev.

  8. I think Prucha can score 25+ goals again if he plays on the first or second line with Gomez or Drury.Love the posts! I'd like to see Naslund with Gomez on the first line, and Drury with Zherdev on the second line.Then you have 2 big scoring threats.


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