Apr 14, 2017; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault reacts as Montreal Canadiens center Tomas Plekanec (14) scored a goal during the third period in game two of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports (Jean-Yves Ahern)
Apr 14, 2017; Montreal, Quebec, CAN; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault reacts as Montreal Canadiens center Tomas Plekanec (14) scored a goal during the third period in game two of the first round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Bell Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports (Jean-Yves Ahern)

Alain Vigneault met with the media on Saturday and said (NYR):

  • "right now one of the first things we said in orientation is that this is our time in training camp to build the foundation to have a successful season. Building that foundation is getting on the same page as far as systems, being one of the best conditioned teams in the league. We got our results and a few guys have some areas to work on, 20 something days to work on it. As a team, you work on coming together, understanding your role and contribution. Today was a very important day as far as teaching, D-zone coverage, different responsibilities in D-zone coverage from 1 on 1 to when we go 5 on 5. It was our first day and I thought it went extremely well."
  • Is this earlier than normal to teach systems, "I would say that not in the past while here, since I have been here. We have modified a few ways of doing it, we did video before practice, went to the board to explain a couple of things that we feel are important as far as technique and tactical wise. For them it was a full day and for the most part I think it went very well."
  • You went over everything first, "we never go to the boards, we always pre-ice but on top of that one of the things we do, since I have been here, is the video part that goes with the work on ice. We take sequences from the prior years and show our guys doing it the way we expect it to be done. Those are good refreshers for the guys who have been here and real good teaching point for the new guys."
  • Did you change the system, "We are like all the teams, after a season you analyze and look at who has won and see if there is anything that they have done specifically. I wouldn't want to give you some of the areas because then I would be giving the whole league, today, as far as overall coverage in our zone and assignments and the trigger points, we didn't modify anything there."
  • On Brady Skjei, "the fact that he is working out with Ryan McDonagh, Mac's testing scores are over the roof, one of the best on the team. You can tell that Brady is working out with him, the influence and impact, I mean his testing, in the time that I have been here, are improving, improving. He is right near the Mac level in terms of fitness scoring. That says a lot about him and I think that is going to materialize on the ice, better decision making, quicker decision making with the puck, better decision making, quicker decision making without the puck. He is doing everything he can to be the best player he can be and we need that from our group if we are going to be a better team."
  • On Shattenkirk and adjusting to the system, "every team, to some extent, plays 80% the same way. There is that 20% that is a little different in certain situations. In Shatty's case, he's been coached by one of the best coaches in the league for quite some time. I'm not worried about how understanding the defensive side of the game. We might forecheck differently than St. Louis or Washington does but he knows what to do in his own end. The one thing I want him to do is to bring his offensive instincts, his creativity with the puck, I want that to flow. There are certain principles that every team has but when he has the puck, the decisions he makes with the puck, I have a lot of confidence he will make the right ones in the right situations, I will give him some leeway there."
  • "He's been around, whether it be the system he played or systems he played against, he knows how to play with and without the puck. I talked quickly to Desharnais because I know how they play, especially since we played in two series in the last few years. Not a lot of difference so it should be real easy for them to pick up."
  • Have there been any surprises, "I wouldn't say surprises. I looked at Nasher today, how well he was skating and the energy he was bringing. Jimmy and Hayes and the energy they were bringing, Marc Staal looked real good on the ice. I'm looking at our veterans and am excited to see them coming back to camp and I am getting a first hand look at a lot of these younger players. We had 8 of the players from Pionk, to Day, to Pedrie, Fontaine, two of the goalies, 8 guys stayed in New York during the summer and went to Prentiss where Marty and Richie used to work out and their test scores, you can tell that they came in and worked out the right way. Impressed with those guys staying in New York all summer to come into camp in as good a shape as they could."
  • On Brendan Smith, "some of you have gotten to know Smytty, he is vocal, he is intense, our room, that is a good thing to have in the room. He is not only vocal but he shares a lot of his inner feelings with his teammates which is good, it's about keeping everyone accountable and I like that aspect of him and that energy. I talked to him about an expanded role in our dressing room and him coming from Detroit, he has had some real solid leaders in the past so I expect a lot more from that end from him."
  • On Chris Kreider, "Chris has improved and became a real important player on our team. As a coach what I am striving to get from him is, that third period we saw against Ottawa, that is what I am striving for to get on a consistent basis. Not that he didn't play well, he played well and became one of our top end scorers and a power forward, but if I can get that it's my job as a coach to get product, that performance he gave us, he was a beast, maybe the best player on the ice and that is what we are trying to get from him on a consistent basis. He is not a kid anymore, it's his turn now and he has to become a real good voice in our room, a great example fitness wise off the ice. We expect more from him and I know we are going to get it."
  • On the roster for Monday, I have, I just need to double check with Gorts. The groups will be a little different tomorrow, one will be the playing group and the other won't be the playing group but I need to double check because we have changed things around."
  • On the 9 days after the last exhibition game, "one of the things, we had a great team building activity last year when we went to the NYPD, it was one of the best that I have done and this year, because we had that amount of time I thought it was the right time to get out with our team, our team will be made up by then. We will go to Lake Placid. We will practice the Sunday, leave for Lake Placid and I will have a guest speaker, Ed Viesturs, mountain climber. I've had Ed when I was in Van, he spoke a couple of times to my team, the year we went to the Stanley Cup Final. Outstanding, one of the few guys who does what he does. We have all done the army, the police, fire men, this is different. He talks about some good things and team work and mental strength and conditioning you need when you are climbing mountains and there is a good correlation of what he has to do with his team and what I have to do with my team and what individuals on the team need to do. We have Lake Placid all laid out, talk about coming together and we had a lot of help from Mike Richter. We will practice here Sunday, fly there, Monday skate, Tuesday I'm not 100% sure on the skate but we will be back Tuesday night."
  • Will you still have four alternate captains, "it's something that Ryan and I have discussed. Right now we have two and lets get through camp and see who wants an added role. It's something we might do, but not set in stone. I want to get Ryan's feedback and what he feels will be best for the team and go from there.'

May 2, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault coaches against the Ottawa Senators during the third period of game three of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
May 2, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault coaches against the Ottawa Senators during the third period of game three of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Alain Vigneault met with the media prior to tonight's game against the Sharks and said (NYR):

  • On going 11 forwards and 7 D, "at this time right now, I am thinking of keeping Anthony in our lineup and on the second PP unit. Adam or Paul are not true centers, with how the schedule is laid out, we have a better chance with 11 forwards and I can double shift a couple of those guys and play 7 D."
  • On DeAngelo, "no doubt it's not easy, you gotta skate between the TV timeouts to stay ready but he has been alright for us. This is not the ideal situation and Jeff and I will talk about this is the coming days but we wanted to get through Saturday and Monday and we will see what happens moving forward."
  • On Chris Kreider, "I hope it's going to get him going. He has had a lot of good looks on the rush that he hasn't been able to score. He is such a big strong man that he should be able to get in on the forecheck, create turnovers, not take penalties 200 ft from our net, protect the puck and get into some open ice and make and create some plays. It can't all be on the rush, I'm hoping that one, it was a PP goal but they had to win those battles in the corner and then both JT and David sent it to Kreids and he put it in. That is the type of 5 on 5 , not just on the PP, that we need to see from that group."
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

11:29AM: The Rangers will go with 7 defensemen and 11 forwards again tonight. (Cyrgalis)

10:56AM: At the Rangers morning skate on Monday, the team is using the following lines (Zipay):

  • Rick Nash, Mika Zibanejad, Mats Zuccarello
  • Jimmy Vesey, Kevin Hayes, Jesper Fast
  • Chris Kreider, David Desharnais, JT Miller
  • Michael. Grabnerr, Adam Cracknell/Paul Carey, Paul Buchnevich

On defense the Rangers have:

  • Ryan McDonagh paired with Brendan Smith
  • Marc Staal paired with Kevin Shattenkirk
  • Brady Skjei paired with Nick Holden
  • Steven Kampfer paired with Tony DeAngelo.

Henrik Lundqvist is expected to start in goal.

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New York Rangers celebrate after a goal by New York Rangers right wing Jesper Fast (17) against Nashville Predators during first period at Madison Square Garden. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Rangers celebrate after a goal by New York Rangers right wing Jesper Fast (17) against Nashville Predators during first period at Madison Square Garden. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)

All three of Jimmy Vesey, Kevin Hayes and Jesper Fast scored for the Rangers on Saturday against the Predators.

From the Rangers Game Preview for tonight's game against San Jose, "over the last two contests, each of the three players has posted a plus-four rating or better (Hayes - plus-five; Vesey - plus-four; Fast - plus-four), and each player has also registered at least two points (Hayes - two goals, one assist; Vesey - one goal, one assist; Fast - one goal, one assist)."

Alain Vigneault said last week that the trio is a "hard working line" where Fast and Vesey get in on the forecheck and create turnovers and that Hayes complements them well.

Tags: Jesper Fast, Jimmy Vesey, Kevin Hayes
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New York Rangers center Kevin Hayes (13) celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal against the New Jersey Devils during the first period at Madison Square Garden. (Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Rangers center Kevin Hayes (13) celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal against the New Jersey Devils during the first period at Madison Square Garden. (Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports)

Kevin Hayes has three goals and 2 assists this season with 16 shots on goal and an average of 16:34 per game.

Alain Vigneault said recently that Hayes has room for improvement at both ends and that he is being counted on to be a 200ft player.

He added that Hayes is learning and that "we are showing faith in him and I am very confident that the faith hand trust we are showing in him will pay off."

Tags: Kevin Hayes
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Oct 7, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers defenseman Tony DeAngelo (77) skates out with the puck from behind his own net against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. The Maple Leafs beat the Rangers 8-5. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports (Tom Szczerbowski)
Oct 7, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers defenseman Tony DeAngelo (77) skates out with the puck from behind his own net against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. The Maple Leafs beat the Rangers 8-5. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports (Tom Szczerbowski)

Tony DeAngelo played only 5:20 during Saturday's win over Nashville, firing two shot attempts (1 blocked, 1 missed the net) and 1 giveaway.

DeAngelo played a total of 1:08 at even strength and 4:12 on the PP.

By period, DeAngelo played:

Tags: Anthony DeAngelo
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Oct 21, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Marc Staal (18) and center Kevin Hayes (13) celebrates with left wing Jimmy Vesey (26) after he scored a goal during third period against Nashville Predators at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Oct 21, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Marc Staal (18) and center Kevin Hayes (13) celebrates with left wing Jimmy Vesey (26) after he scored a goal during third period against Nashville Predators at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Following yesterday's win over Nashville, Henrik Lundqvist said that it was "a good feeling to finally get a win here." (NYR Game Notes)

He added, "you can do so many good things to try to get confidence and try to get a good feeling in here, but it in the end it comes down to winning games." (NYR Game Notes)

Lundqvist said that the Rangers felt good about their game after a "good first period" and that because they had the lead they didn't need to spend time chasing.

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May 4, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault coaches against the Ottawa Senators during the third period of game four of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
May 4, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault coaches against the Ottawa Senators during the third period of game four of the second round of the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Alain Vigneault met with the media following the Rangers win and said (NYR Game Notes, MSG, NYR):

  • On whether there's a sense of relief after getting a win…"I don't think relief is the right word, I mean obviously we felt we deserved a better outcome, especially in the last three games. The process was there, the work was there. Today we played a real strong first period, got a lead, then maybe backed off a little more than we should have. Hank came up with some saves. We'll take the two points and move on to the next game."
  •  On how Jesper Fast's return has helped the team…"I've got a real dependable five-on-five player there, and I've got probably one of our best penalty killers. He's a big part of the energy on the team that we can bring to games and I think he's slowly but surely finding his rhythm. He's coming back from a serious injury. It's going to take him a little bit of time, but he is improving."
  •  On Kevin Hayes' play the last couple of games…"I think since I put that line together with Jimmy (Vesey) and Jesper (Fast), it's a real hard working line. It's simple, north-south, get it in deep, work the corners, work on the forecheck. I think Kevin with his size and his hockey smarts, he fits in real well. The last couple of games, he's gotten big goals for us and I want that to continue for sure."
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Sep 25, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Red Wings defenseman Ryan Sproul (62) during the game against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Fuller)
Sep 25, 2017; Detroit, MI, USA; Detroit Red Wings defenseman Ryan Sproul (62) during the game against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Little Caesars Arena. Mandatory Credit: Tim Fuller-USA TODAY Sports (Tim Fuller)

10/23/17 | The Red Wings moved Sproul so that they could open up ice time for other prospects in the AHL. (Custance)

10/21/17 | The Rangers have acquired Ryan Sproul in exchange for Matt Puempel.

Sproul, 24, has 28 games of NHL experience and is 6-4, 205.

He was a second round pick for Detroit in in 2011.

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Oct 21, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Kevin Hayes (13) reacts after scoring a goal against Nashville Predators during second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Oct 21, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Kevin Hayes (13) reacts after scoring a goal against Nashville Predators during second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Kevin Hayes was named the number one star and awarded the Broadway Hat after today's win over Nashville.

Hayes spoke after the game on MSG and said:

  • On his line, "the last few games we have been good, we try to keep it simple in the D zone and don't cheat. If we play good D we can generate some offense and tonight I thought we did that."
  • On Vesey and Fast, "those two guys, you know what you are going to get. They are honest players, work hard and don't mind hitting guys. When they are getting on the D like that it generates a lot of open space and tonight we could have buried a lot more chances, we had good possession in the offensive zone."
  • On his goal, "I got some speed and their D was standing flat footed, it's not often that I beat guys wide but tonight it happened and luckily it went in."
  • On the win, "it's big. We have been struggling and to play 60 minutes and get two points in front of our fans, hopefully it's a spring board to a lot of other things."
Tags: Kevin Hayes
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New York Rangers celebrate after a goal by New York Rangers right wing Jesper Fast (17) against Nashville Predators during first period at Madison Square Garden. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Rangers celebrate after a goal by New York Rangers right wing Jesper Fast (17) against Nashville Predators during first period at Madison Square Garden. (Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports)

The Rangers got out to an early lead and never looked back, beating the Predators, 4-2, on Saturday afternoon. >> Read more

First Period

  • 14:58 NYR Jesper Fast; Assist: Kevin Hayes
  • 19:34 NYR Chris Kreider (Power Play); Assists: J.T. Miller, David Desharnais

Second Period

  • 1:44 NSH Mattias Ekholm; Assist: Filip Forsberg
  • 12:46 NYR Kevin Hayes; Assists: Jimmy Vesey, Brady Skjei
  • 15:30 NSH Filip Forsberg; Assists: Roman Josi, Ryan Johansen

Third Period

  • 19:21 NYR Jimmy Vesey (ENG); Assists: Brendan Smith
Tags: Nashville Predators
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New York Rangers defenseman Nick Holden passes the puck during the first period against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Madison Square Garden. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Rangers defenseman Nick Holden passes the puck during the first period against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Madison Square Garden. (Vincent Carchietta/USA TODAY Sports)

The Rangers are dressing 11 forwards and 7 defensemen tonight against the Predators. (MSG)

Adam Cracknell comes out of the lineup and is replaced by Nick Holden.

The Rangers have used 7 defense an 11 forwards at other times this season though Alain Vigneault has said that he prefers to go with four lines and three defense pairs. (MSG)

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Sep 25, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers left wing Rick Nash (61) carries the puck against the Philadelphia Flyers during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Sep 25, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers left wing Rick Nash (61) carries the puck against the Philadelphia Flyers during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

Alain Vigneault said earlier this week that Rick Nash is "leading the way" for the Rangers and doing what is expected.

Vigneault said that Nash was a "force" against the Penguins, "wants to lead" and "that is what we need from him."

On Friday, Vigneault said that Nash is a beast and representative of the whole team right now.

Tags: Rick Nash
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 (Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports)
(Adam Hunger-USA TODAY Sports)

After losing in the Stanley Cup Final, many teams struggle out of the gate the following season. The Nashville Predators are no exception.

Fortunately for them, the Predators' hangover appears to have lasted two games.

Tags: Nashville Predators
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The Wolf Pack lost to the Senators 5-1 last night:

  • John Gilmour: minus one
  • Neal Pionk: 3 shots, minus one
  • Adam Tambellini: 1 shot
  • Ryan Gropp: 3 shots, minus one
  • Brandon Crawley: slashing & cross checking penalties
  • Steven Fogarty: 2 shots, minus one
  • Boo Nieves: 2 shots
  • Ryan Graves: hooking penalty, 5 shots, minus one
  • Alexei Bereglazov: hooking penalty, minus one
  • Vince Pedrie: 4 shots, minus one
  • Filip Chytil: 1 assist, 5 shots
  • Matt Puempel: 1 assist

Click below to see Chytil's assist

Tags: Filip Chytil
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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

Henrik Lundqvist said that the Rangers showed a lot of "desperation and determination" in the third period on Thursday, especially with their forecheck and how they attacked.

Lundqvist said, "that was the intensity we need to play with. It was great to see. We left everything out there, especially in the third. I think the determination showed a lot of good things about this group." (NYR Game Notes)

The Rangers scored twice, and had one goal disallowed, 11 scoring chances and 13 shots on goal in the third period. (Natural Stat Trick)

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New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault gives instructions during an NHL hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Thursday, March 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (Gene J. Puskar/AP)
New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault gives instructions during an NHL hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Thursday, March 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (Gene J. Puskar/AP)

Alain Vigneault met with the media following practice on Friday and said (NYR):

  • On the issues starting games, "definitely can't be perfect in a game, seems to be that our starts, we fall behind but we battle back. If we can find a way, and we are telling our players, the high percentage plays to make to be able to not make the mistakes we are making. So far it has put us behind the 8-ball a little bit and tomorrow we get another opportunity to start a better game. It's not the 5th, 6th, 7th time, its' a new day and new time and an afternoon game and we will be ready for it."
  • How does the team battle back, "our guys are playing hard and playing the right way. I've been through a few of these situations, this group is together, accountable, it's focused, out early today, working extra, extra video. They want to succeed, they want the Rangers and their fans to be happy and that is what we are trying to do here. Right now, because of the circumstances, it's a little bit challenging on the ice and mentally but as you can see, guys don't give up, plug away and battle hard. We are playing against a Stanley Cup finalist, they just went into Philly and won 1-0. They are on top of their game right now, another tough opponent and we will need to be real good."
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10/20/17 | So far this season, the Rangers have allowed the following goals within the first five minutes of a period:

  • Toronto: Dominic Moore: 2:30 in the first
  • St. Louis: Carl Gunnarsson: 15 seconds into the first
  • Columbus: 27 seconds (WAIVED OFF for Goalie Interference)
  • Devils: Drew Staffored: 1:00 into the third
  • Pittsburgh: Phil Kessel: 43 seconds into the first
  • Pittsburgh: Evgeni Malkin: 58 seconds into OT
  • Islanders: Anders Lee: 2:40 into the first
  • Islanders: Matt Barzal: 1:15 into the second
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Sep 27, 2016; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Malte Stromwall (84) and New York Islanders defenseman David Quenneville (49) come together during the third period during a preseason hockey game at Madison Square Garden. The Rangers won 5-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Sep 27, 2016; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Malte Stromwall (84) and New York Islanders defenseman David Quenneville (49) come together during the third period during a preseason hockey game at Madison Square Garden. The Rangers won 5-2. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

The Rangers have placed Malte Stromwall on unconditional waivers for the purpose of terminating his contract. (Johnston)

Stromwall signed with the Rangers in the summer of 2016 after playing for AIK in Sweden with fellow former prospect Robin Kovacs.

Stromwall played in Hartford last season, scoring two goals and two assists in 44 games.

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Nov 5, 2016; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene (9) controls the puck in the second period against the Minnesota Wild at the Pepsi Center. (Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports)
Nov 5, 2016; Denver, CO, USA; Colorado Avalanche center Matt Duchene (9) controls the puck in the second period against the Minnesota Wild at the Pepsi Center. (Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports)

10/20/17 | 12:04PM: Elliotte Friedman said on Calgary radio this morning that the Rangers "kind of fished in around" into things with Duchene but that he doesn't know if there is a fit.(FanRag)

10/19/17 | Darren Dreger reports on TSN that the Rangers have checked in on the status of Matt Duchene.

Dreger said that there is an "endless cycle" around Duchene and that the Rangers are a "classic example of a team that initially was in, then they were out, recently they are back in, just revisiting, but they don't think there is anything even remotely possible." (TSN)

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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

Henrik Lundqvist said following last night's game that Alain Vigneault presented the Rangers with two choices:

  • "To feel sorry for ourselves"
  • "Go out and really try to make the most of this situation"

Lundqvist said that the Rangers were close to winning, one play away in the past two games, and that he likes how they played against the Islanders, "especially" in the second half.

Vigneault said after last night's game, "I'm a firm believer that if you prepare and work hard, things will fall into place. We battled back again tonight, it's not the first time we have done that this year, we got one point but we battled hard."

Brendan Smith said after the game, "I thought we played well, and we have to build on those. Like anything, if you flip the coin how many times it goes heads, it's going to come back tails. And we need it to come back in our favor, and it's going to. If we just keep that process, it's going to come our way and we're going to build on it." (NYR Game Notes)

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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

Alain Vigneault met with the media on MSG following the Rangers loss to the Isles and said:

  • On the third, "in the second and the third, we gave up that early goal, down by two against a strong team like the Isles. We buckled down. Our guys worked extremely hard, maybe our execution isn't perfect but the work ethic and commitment to try and play the right way is there. I'm a firm believer that if you prepare and work hard, things will fall into place. We battled back again tonight, it's not the first time we have done that this year, we got one point but we battled hard."
  • Was McDonagh hurt on that blocked shot at the end of OT, "no."
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Oct 13, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save in net against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the third period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)
Oct 13, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save in net against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the third period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)

Henrik Lundqvist met with the media following the Rangers loss to the Islanders and said (MSG, NYR Game Notes):

On whether he allows himself any satisfaction in gaining a point tonight given the big saves he made …"

  • Yes and no. I think this game and last game we showed a lot of good things, the way we battled back. Again, tough start. We start the game on the PK and they get a goal right away. It's too many games now where we give up the first goal. I have to be better; as a group we have to be better. Just really focus on the first 10 (minutes) to give us a chance to feel good about ourselves."

    Tags: Henrik Lundqvist
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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

First Period 

  • 2:40 NYI Anders Lee (Power Play); Assists: Ryan Pulock, Jordan Eberle
  • 5:02 NYR David Desharnais; Assists: Kevin Shattenkirk, Marc Staal
  • 6:06 NYI Brock Nelson; Assists: Andrew Ladd

Second Period 

  • 1:15 NYI Mathew Barzal; Assists: Calvin de Haan, Josh Bailey

Third Period 

  • 3:29 NYR Mats Zuccarello; Assists: Brendan Smith
  • 14:06 NYR Kevin Hayes; Assists: Jesper Fast, Ryan McDonagh
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Oct 14, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk (22) celebrates his goal during the third period against the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports
		 (Anthony Gruppuso)
Oct 14, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk (22) celebrates his goal during the third period against the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Anthony Gruppuso-USA TODAY Sports (Anthony Gruppuso)

NEW YORK -- When the New York Islanders and New York Rangers meet, there is never a shortage of intensity and energy.

 

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 ( Adam Hunger)
( Adam Hunger)

On Wednesday, Alain Vigneault said that the Rangers are having too many bad starts and need to simplify things when the puck is dropped.

He said that the need to make sure they get pucks deep and stop turning it over, adding they are "very aware" of how often they are giving up the puck. (NYR)

On Thursday, Vigneault said that the Rangers need to keep things simple in the first and last minutes of periods and need to "execute" in all areas of the ice.

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New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault gives instructions during an NHL hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Thursday, March 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (Gene J. Puskar/AP)
New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault gives instructions during an NHL hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Thursday, March 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (Gene J. Puskar/AP)

Alain Vigneault met with the media on Thursday prior to the Rangers game against the Islanders (NYR):

  • "I thought we played pretty good against Jersey also. We've had some good moments in some good games. Tonight we get another opportunity against a good rival to put our game in place and I know it will be a hard fought game, we will have to play fast and check well. We are ready for it, we've taken strides and working real hard to get our game in order."
  • On McDonagh's season, "Mac puts a lot on himself and there is probably a couple of decisions here and there that are not Mac-like. He has always been very dependable, a lot like some of our other guys, trying real hard to get this going in the right direction. He is only 1 or 2 really solid plays away from being really good. Everybody looks at the last game and what happened at the end but you gotta turn the page, move on and focus on tonight and that is what I want him to do."
  • How much does the team struggle when he isn't on his game, "it's the same as every line or every D pair or the goalie. To win in today's NHL you can't win with a "B" game. You gotta work real hard but also have to perform and execute in all the areas. Tonight, if I'm a linemate on a line, it's your responsibility to make sure you are going out on the ice and performing to your best, otherwise you are not helping your linemates. We need a complete and total effort from our whole group."
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3:09PM: On McDonagh's season, Alain Vigneault said today  "Mac puts a lot on himself and there is probably a couple of decisions here and there that are not Mac-like. He has always been very dependable, a lot like some of our other guys, trying real hard to get this going in the right direction. He is only 1 or 2 really solid plays away from being really good. Everybody looks at the last game and what happened at the end but you gotta turn the page, move on and focus on tonight and that is what I want him to do."

10:47AM: McDonagh said that he is good to go for tonight's game. (NYR)

10:42AM: McDonagh and Kevin Hayes left the ice after skating, leaving the likely scratches for tonight, Ondrej Pavelec, Steven Kampfer, Nick Holden and Paul Carey, on the ice. (Cyrgalis)

Tags: Ryan McDonagh
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 ( Adam Hunger)
( Adam Hunger)

10/19/17 | On Wednesday, Vigneault said that the Rangers are working "extremely hard" right now and have taken "huge steps in the right direction in all facets of our game."

Vigneault said that the Rangers are focused, preparing well and that it's "just a matter of time before we put it all together."

Kevin Shattenkirk said that when the Rangers come out of this slide they will be a "stronger team" because of the lessons they learned. (NY Post)

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Sep 25, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers left wing Rick Nash (61) carries the puck against the Philadelphia Flyers during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Sep 25, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers left wing Rick Nash (61) carries the puck against the Philadelphia Flyers during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

10/18/17 | 8:34PM: Bob McKenzie reiterates that Nash wants to stay a Ranger past this season, will need to take a pay cut and that there hasn't been much discussion about an extension. (NBCSN, Today's Slapshot)

McKenzie adds that if the Rangers continue to struggle then Nash will likely be traded before the deadline. (NBCSN, Today's Slapshot)

10/9/17 | 10:48AM: Nash said that it would be exciting to become a free agent for the first time but that he hopes that he gets to stay with the Rangers. (The Athletic)

Nash's agent Joe Resnick said that Nash isn't thinking about a contract right now. (The Athletic)

Tags: Rick Nash
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10/19/17 | Shattenkirk said that he was too tentative in the Rangers first few games but now he is "just playing" and putting himself in the right spots. (Newsday)

10/18/17 | Alain Vigneault said on Wednesday that Kevin Shattenkirk is putting a lot of pressure on himself and that he likes players who are accountable and "demanding" of themselves.

Vigneault said that Shattenkirk is still adjusting to being with the Rangers but he is closing in on knowing and understanding about 90% of what the Rangers want to do and how they want to play.

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Alain Vigneault met with the media on Wednesday after practice and said (NYR):

  • Will McDonagh be okay for tomorrow, "as far as I know, yes. Today was a maintenance day. At this time I would say that he should be good tomorrow and I should be able to let you know in the morning."
  • Are you having a morning skate, "no, just a couple of guys. McDonagh should be one of them."
  • On the offense, "we are working extremely hard right now both as a team and individually for us to win. This is a business that is oriented around winning and we need to get our game to where it will permit us to do that on a more regular basis. I look at the things we have been working on and we are taking huge steps in the right direction in all facets of our game, defensively and offensively and it's just a matter of time before we put it all together. The focus is there, the prep and hard work is there and needed to be successful and we have an opportunity tomorrow against another good team. We had the Stanley Cup champions come in here and now one of our biggest rivals. We played well against one of our rivals against New Jersey. I'm expecting the same type of energy and execution and jump tomorrow and expect us to be on the right side this time."
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1:38PM: Ryan McDonagh should be able to play tomorrow against the Islanders but he will skate in the morning. (NYR, Zipay)

12:52PM: At practice today, Nick Holden skated in McDonagh's spot next to Tony DeAngelo, Marc Staal and Kevin Shattenkirk stayed together and so did Brady Skjei and Brendan Smith. (Zipay)

Paul Carey and Steven Kampfer skated as an extra defense pair. (Zipay)

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Oct 13, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh (27) awaits the face-off against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the third period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)
Oct 13, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh (27) awaits the face-off against the Columbus Blue Jackets in the third period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)

Through seven games to start the season, Ryan McDonagh has two assists, a minus two rating, 10 PIM and an average of 23:29 per game.

McDonagh has been credited with 9 giveaways, including 6 last night in the Rangers loss to the Penguins.

McDonagh turned the puck over in OT last night, leading to the Penguins game winner, and said that he let the team down and made a "really bad play."

Tags: Ryan McDonagh
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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Alain Vigneault met with the media on MSG and said:

  • On the game, "there is no sense in being frustrated. It's about playing the game and playing it the right way. We started off, again, tonight, we didn't make the simple plays but you gotta like the way we battled back. We came back real strong in the second and third and carried most of the play and had a lead. Could say that there was icing on the play, maybe Kevin shouldn't' have touched the puck, right now it's a little bit challenging as far as putting the whole game together for us. This group is very accountable and working very hard and I'm very confident that if we keep doing a lot of the things we are doing we will be on the right track."
  • On McDonagh messing up, "you guys know Ryan as much as I do and how much he cares and wants to do the right thing. There is always that fine line of wanting to do too much to help the team. Ryan is a great captain and a great person and he will do like the rest of the group and work himself out of this and we will be on the right track real soon."
  • On the penalty on the 5 on 3, "he got pushed from behind by the goalie and the momentum pushed him on the D. I don't really think I can fault him for that. I looked at the replay quickly and I have to see it again. It's part of the game."
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 (AP)
(AP)

On MSG, Henrik Lundqvist was asked about the game tying goal that Sidney Crosby score and said:

  • On the tying goal, "I think you watched five replays so you probably know what happened, he banged it off me and it's not the first time that happens. As a goalie you just need to make sure you are alert. Try to deflect the pass but when it goes right at you like that, sometimes you need some luck. I didn't have it in that situation. I don't know what else to say. It was a tough goal to give up late in the game. Sometimes it's easy to face a shot then have a play like that where my stick is there and it's a just a bad bounce, that is what it is."
  • Were you surprised on the tying goal, "when the puck is there you wait for the next play and when it bangs it off your stick like that you hope it doesn't go the way it went in. It went back and not in front of me. Sometimes you need to hide behind the post and some players, Crosby does it a lot. Just gotta learn from it. Maybe it was a little surprising, I didn't expect that."
Tags: Henrik Lundqvist, Ryan McDonagh
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 (AP)
(AP)

The Rangers scored three straight goals in the second period, but Evgeni Malkin scored the game-winning goal to propel the Penguins to a 5-4 win on Tuesday night at Madison Square Garden. >> Read More


First period:

  • 0:43 PIT Phil Kessel; Assists: Evgeni Malkin, Ian Cole
  • 13:30 PIT Carl Hagelin; Assists: Olli Maatta

Second period:

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Oct 10, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) plays the puck in front of St. Louis Blues center Tage Thompson (32) during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Oct 10, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) plays the puck in front of St. Louis Blues center Tage Thompson (32) during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

NEW YORK -- The New York Rangers are sitting in last place in the Eastern Conference at 1-5-0, their worst start since 1980. They are desperate for a victory, and the good news is their next game is on home ice Tuesday night.

 

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Apr 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh (27) looks to pass the puck during the third period against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Apr 9, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh (27) looks to pass the puck during the third period against the Pittsburgh Penguins at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

When asked what the Rangers can do better to limit turnovers, Alain Vigneault said Saturday that they need to make better decisions with the puck.

Ryan McDonagh said that the Rangers are trying to force things and that the for them to be successful they need to play as a unit of five, play fast and understand where each other are on the ice.

Rick Nash said that the Rangers need to simplify their game and stick with a simple game, even when they are struggling. (NYR Game Notes)

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Tonight against the Penguins, the Rangers are expected to start with the lines as (NYR):

  • Rick Nash, Mika Zibanejad, Mats Zuccarello
  • Chris Kreider, David Desharnais, JT Miller
  • Jimmy Vesey, Kevin Hayes, Jesper Fast
  • Michael Grabner, Adam Cracknell, Pavel Buchnevich

Alain Vigneault said today that Cracknell has played center "quite a bit" and that Lindy Ruff said that he played Cracknell at center about 50% of the time last season.

On defense the plan is similar to Saturday's loss in New Jersey, with Ryan McDonagh and Anthony DeAngelo, Marc Staal and Kevin Shattenkirk, Brady Skjei and Brendan Smith. (NYR)

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New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault gives instructions during an NHL hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Thursday, March 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (Gene J. Puskar/AP)
New York Rangers head coach Alain Vigneault gives instructions during an NHL hockey game against the Pittsburgh Penguins in Pittsburgh, Thursday, March 3, 2016. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) (Gene J. Puskar/AP)

Alain Vigneault met with the media this morning and said (NYR):

  • Is Cracknell in today, "yes, he is playing. Four lines and 6 D."
  • How much center has he played, "quite a bit. Lindy said that he used him there more than 50% of the time last year so he is used to playing there and he will be effective for us."
  • On JT Miller's season, "JT has always been good on faceoffs, especially on the strong side, good technique and strength and has been efficient for us. As far as his play, like the rest of our team, especially on offense, just a little bit off and that is one of the reasons that when you have guys with that skill level, that can play a power game are having a tough time helping us score goals, we haven't scored a lot of goals this year. We are looking to play a solid two-way game and finish a bit more on the opportunities we are getting."
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 ( Adam Hunger)
( Adam Hunger)

Brady Skjei said on Monday that spirits in the Rangers locker room are "still high" and that while it's been a frustrating start, "there is a lot of fight in this room" and the Rangers are trying to improve every day. (NYR)

Skjei added that the Rangers are a "tight knit" group and that no one is giving up or quitting. (NYR)

Alain Vigneault said on Monday that no one is happy with where the Rangers are right now but that these struggles will help to form the team's identity.

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Oct 13, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Rangers right wing Rick Nash (61) takes a shot against Columbus Blue Jackets goalie Sergei Bobrovsky (72) in the first period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)
Oct 13, 2017; Columbus, OH, USA; New York Rangers right wing Rick Nash (61) takes a shot against Columbus Blue Jackets goalie Sergei Bobrovsky (72) in the first period at Nationwide Arena. Mandatory Credit: Aaron Doster-USA TODAY Sports (Aaron Doster)

Only 6 of the Rangers 13 goals so far this season have come at 5 on 5 while the Rangers have allowed 12 goals at 5 on 5.

The Rangers had two 5 on 5 goals against the Leafs and Canadiens and one each against the Blue Jackets and Devils this past weekend. (Natural Stat Trick)

Alain Vigneault said that the Rangers are aware of their scoring issues so far and that they are working on being more efficient with the puck while trying to make plays.

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Alain Vigneault met with the media following practice on Monday and said (NYR):

  • On practice, "we had a good practice, worked on a couple of areas we needed to work on. A little bit of forecheck and zone time and got a lot out of it."
  • On the lack of even strength scoring, "we are aware of it. Right now, except for that Toronto game where we scored 4 goals at 5 on 5, the other 5 games we have only scored two goals at 5 on 5. It's definitely an area we are working on, being more efficient coming into the zone and making certain plays and trusting their instincts. These guys have had pretty good numbers and we have done it on a four line basis and there is no doubt that we, in my estimation, improved the defensive side of the game but we need to score some goals and focus on our offensive zone. We get another opportunity tomorrow.' 
  • "For me, I see this as us being challenged, we are feeling adversity as a group and the solution lies inside that room. As a player you control what you can control, hard work, prep, making sure you analyze your game properly so that you can focus on the areas that you need to improve. That is where coaching comes in, to provide the right feedback and if we get our guys to improve their games individually, team will benefit, play better and win. When you win you are happy and when you don't win it's a little more challenging."
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 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

12:13PM: At Rangers practice on Monday, the team is using the following lines (Cyrgalis):

  • Rick Nash, Mika Zibanejad, Mats Zuccarello
  • Chris Kreider, David Desharnais, JT Miller
  • Jimmy Vesey, Kevin Hayes, Jesper Fast
  • Michael Grabner, Paul Carey, Adam Cracknell/Pavel Buchnevich.

On defense, the Rangers have Ryan McDonagh with Tony DeAngelo, Brady Skjei with Brendan Smith, Marc Staal with Kevin Shattenkirk, Nick Holden with Steven Kampfer. (Cyrgalis)

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 ( Adam Hunger)
( Adam Hunger)

Ryan McDonagh said on Saturday that hopefully this was "rock bottom early on" for the Rangers and that this is a real "gut check" time."

McDonagh said that the Rangers have no one to blame but themselves and that an inability to play a 60 minute game has been the story so far this season.

He said that there is an understanding of the expectations both for the team and individually and that the Rangers need to play with more "edge and desperation."

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 (Brad Penner)
(Brad Penner)

Ryan McDonagh said on Saturday that this group of Rangers is not going to quit and that he knows that to be a "fact."

McDonagh said that the Rangers need to keep working, trust their system and play a game with more edge and more desperation.

He added that this group of players understand that their recent play is not good enough and that if they don't then "something is wrong."

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Sep 25, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Anthony DeAngelo (77) carries the puck during the third period against the Philadelphia Flyers at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Sep 25, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers defenseman Anthony DeAngelo (77) carries the puck during the third period against the Philadelphia Flyers at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

10/16/17 |Alain Vigneault said on Monday, of DeAngelo's game on Saturday, "he had some real good moments and decisions with the puck, there is no doubt that the upside is there. His penalty was costly, he pushed the guy a little bit, fell on the goalie and the ref looking right at it he didn't call it, the ref 80ft behind calls it. I'm thinking that if he is a more veteran guy he probably doesn't get that call. He needs to establish himself, establish that respect with the refs. He had some good moments, I like the skill level and he did some good things."

10/15/17 | In his return to the lineup last night, Anthony DeAngelo was a minus one, had 3 shots on goal, 1 shot that missed the net, 2 hits and 2 giveaways.

DeAngelo was also called for a cross checking penalty early in the third period that led to the winning goal for the Devils.

Tags: Anthony DeAngelo
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 ( Adam Hunger)
( Adam Hunger)

Following Friday's loss to Columbus, Henrik Lundqvist said that "turnovers" are killing the Rangers and preventing them from playing fast.

Following Saturday's loss to New Jersey, Brady Skjei said that "turnovers" are killing the Rangers and preventing them from playing fast. (MSG)

Asked what changed after a strong first period on Saturday, Alain Vigneault said "turnovers. We turned the puck over and couldn't play as fast as we did in the first period."

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Sep 20, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Filip Chytil (72) celebrates his game winning overtime goal against the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Sep 20, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Filip Chytil (72) celebrates his game winning overtime goal against the New Jersey Devils at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

The Wolf Pack defeated Springfield 4-3 last night on the back of a 3-point performance from Filip Chytil:

  • John Gilmour: 1 goal, 1 shot, plus one, interference penalty
  • Neal Pionk: 4 shots
  • Adam Tambellini: 5 shots
  • Brandon Crawley: 1 shot, cross checking penalty
  • Steven Fogarty: 1 shot, minus one
  • Boo Nieves: 1 goal, 2 shots, minus one, hooking penalty
  • Ryan Graves: 1 shot, plus one
  • Gabriel Fontaine: 1 shot, minus one
  • Alexei Bereglazov: 1 assist, holding penalty
  • Filip Chytil: 1 goal, 2 assists, 3 shots, plus three
  • Matt Puempel: 2 shots
  • Vinni Lettieri: 1 goal, 1 assist, 6 shots, plus three, slashing penalty
Tags: Filip Chytil
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