Jeff Gorton was on The Michael Kay Show at 4PM on Monday and said the following:

  • Did AV's post game comments expedite you firing him, "no, I think, it's a godo questionm based upon what he said. We had made the decison to do it once the decision was made I wanted to do it after the game and not have it linger any more. It didn't have any effect."
  • Did it get contentious, "not really. For anyone who has ever had to do that, it's never a great conversation. AV felt he should still be coaching the Rangers and said so and I can appreciate that and I will leave it at that."
  • Why did you make the decision, "I think that in sports five-years is a long time and watching our team over the last several months and thinking about going forward with youth, it just felt like it was the right time to make the change. Have the timing of a new coach and, essentially, a young team start together."
  • On Lindy Ruff, "I just had a brief conversation with him today. He will head home and then we will talk in a few weeks and see where things are at. I will talk with some people and see where they fit for head coach and then we will talk to Lindy at the end of the process."
  • How hard was the conversation, "it was hard. We worked closely for five-years and I consider him a friend. It's difficult. That night, after the game, I am getting off the train to grab him and talk to him and go through that. It was hard, those are hard things to talk about and difficult conversations but I guess I sleep at night thinking it was the right thing to do."
  • On AV's player development, "I hear that too and heard it when he was coming out of Vancouver. I don't neccesarilly agree with that as a broad statement, that he doesn't develop young players. He has had success, Kreider and Skjei are a couple of guys that come to mind. We had Pionk and he had no problem playing him. It wasn't a huge issue for me. Our group, we just felt that maybe the guys who have been here could use a fresh start and a message from somebody else. It had more to do with that than anything."
  • On balancing development and wanting to win the Cup, "no question, good point. It's definitely a fine line. When you are trying to win and that is the coaches job. Sometimes as managers, we are sitting from ten floors up saying put these young guys on the ice but the reality is that we are trying to win and everyone is trying to win that night and it's a fine line of winning and developing players."
  • Is the next coach currently employed, "Good question, I would say that I don't know the answer to that. We have to go through a process and talk to a bunch of people and get some ideas from other people, what they are thinking about our group and maybe here from some people outside our group that have insight that we don't have, that we are close to it. We will find out and go from there."
  • Do you have a guy that you want, "I think someone is going to have to convince us. We do have a number of names that we want to talk to and start to do but I think someone is going to have to convince me and our group that they should be the next coach of the Rangers."
  • Do they have to have head coaching experience, "I think it's important that you would have been a head coach somewhere along the way and had success with it. It's a pretty hard job to learn on the fly."
  • On experience, "I think it could be from junior, really any league but they would have had to have been a head coach to have that experience."
  • Would you involve someone like Lundqvist in this, "no, not really. These guys will come in tomorrow, have our exit meetings with them and talk to them and find out on a personal level how they felt about the season, a team level, which we know wasn't good, but I like to hear from the players and their thoughts and what they are thinking and Hank is certainly someone we want to hear from. As we go through a coaching search I think that will be my role."
  • Did you know AV would be out when you made the moves, "I would say no. When we did all of this we had conversations and AV was fine with the things we were doing and understood. As time went on over the last couple of months it became clear to me that we needed a change and I definitely didn't know at the deadline or when we did stuff, it just became clear in the last week or so."
  • Is there any timetable, "I don't think the draft is that important except that free agency is right behind it. That is probably the best target date."
  • On the lack of toughness, "I agree and it does have to be addressed. We do want to be a team that plays harder and in the last couple of months we were void in that area and it became more and more clear and it's something that will be addressed."
  • On the young players, "I'm certainly happy with the first round picks from last year. Chytil's speed and skill is pretty evident for an 18-year old player to make plays and skate like he does. Lias is a real competitive player that I think will have a bright future. When Georgiev came up and played so well in goal, I think that was a bright light. Pionk, to play over 20 minutes and get the points that he did and be on the plus side and be competitive, those are the guys that really stick out. On the other side, guys like Gilmour and O'Gara got a good taste and it will help them as they come to camp next year and see if they can crack it."
  • Did you have any second thoughts after the trades, "I don't really agree. Maybe we would have made it if we hung in there, I don't think we would have went very far, I don't think we were a very good team, I think that Henrik covered a lot and I just didn't see where it was going or that we were a high level team that could compete with some of the better teams in the league. Could we have made it? Maybe but at the end of the day, it would have been tough for us to get 97 points the way we were playing."
  • "At the end of the day, everything better the letter and the moves that we made, that is what we are after. We want to win, build a team capable to win and that can go after it for a number of years and give us that chance to finally win."
  • On needing a coach with a 'name' factor, "It doesn't matter. We need to get the best person for the job and someone who can light a fire under these guys and give us an identity and hold these players accountable and get us on the right path."
  • Where does analytics fit, "there is a place for it, we talk a lot about it, look at a lot of different things. Having been someone who scouted for a long time there is still something about an eye test and a feel that comes out but it is nice to look at and see another angle. It's not baseball where it' stoppage after every page. It's continuous, it's hard to listen to analytics 100% but we look at it and try to get every edge that we can."

Gorton spoke with the team's website and said (NYR):

  • "we are going to be picking the next coach of the Rangers and that is exciting for us and him. We look forward to hearing from these people, seeing what they have to say. There are a number of good candidates and we look forward to the process."
  • What qualities are you looking for, "We are looking for someone that has a progressive mind, that is thinking the game and looking at what will happen next, that can change on the fly, see things for what they are and process that and change and play a different way in a certain circumstance. The ability to watch players and understand that they have and stick with them and just a good person, leader and someone who can develop young players."
  • On coaching experience, "depending on where the experience is and what level they have coached at and what success they have had. We will look at different types of experience. I don't think it's the end all be all and that person may not have coached in the NHL yet."
  • On how this fits with what happened in Feb, "we have a lot of decisions to make. We will begin the process of looking for a coach and we will be out watching players for the draft and make sure we make good on these top picks we have. As we go forward we will look at free agency and other situations so I think it's going to be pretty busy."
  • On the experience for Chytil and Andersson, "I think it's going to pay off for them. It's always better when you come back and know players and are familiar with how it works, they played some NHL games, they don't have that unknown this summer. They have played games and know what to expect and as they head into the summer they know the size of NHL players, the speed. I think that when we see them in September they should be different athletes, different people and more confident."
  • On the new prospects, "Ryan Lindgren has been in Hartford and has played really well and that is exciting, scored a few goals, got in his first fight. He has been good, is getting his feet wet playing pro hockey and when he comes back in September he will know what to expect. Howden has had a good start to his playoffs, rangy center that keeps playing well and producing. Hajek got hurt in the first round, hopefully he can get healthy and ready for the memorial cup but all good things we are seeing from them."
  • On a message to Ranger fans, "I want them to be excited. These are tough times and tough decisions and it seems like every day we are having a press conference about something. It's exciting when you are doing this and undertaking a rebuild and getting a new coach, there is a certain amount of excitement, they know what's going on, I think they understand that we have good young players coming and the ability to get more. Hopefully they are as excited as we are about it and looking forward to what is next."

Gorton was also on WFAN on Monday afternoon and said:

  • What made you decide to make a change, "I would say that over the last few weeks, since the trade deadline and going through the process and then coming down to the last week, made the decision that we need a fresh start and a new voice."
  • How surprised was AV, "I don't know. Probably not surprised but maybe surprised I did it so quickly."
  • Was his message stale or did he lose the locker room, "it's a hard thing to say because we changed so many players, half our team was gone at the trade deadline. I would say that it was more the day to day message, after five years, needing something new and needing a fresh start, I think we had a number of guys that need that."
  • Was your mind made up when you sent the letter, "no, certainly on the rebuild and what we needed to do, we had made up our mind with the letter and press conference and moves we made. But as far as AV, no, he is a very successful coach, he has coached over a 10000 games, successful here, got us to the Stanley Cup Final. It's a tough move to make when someone is successful and is a good person and you know he is good at his job but you know that it's time."
  • Did player input contribute to the decision and will they have input on the next coach, "I would say that the answer on both is not much. It's my job and the people that work here for us to make those decisions and let the players play. We will go through a process tomorrow like we always do when a season ends, hopefully usually later in the year than this but we will talk to them all and get a sense for their season and how they felt about it but very little input about the coach. We will pick the coach and let them play."
  • Did you talk to players along the way about AV, "no, I think that is probably a tough spot to put a player in, to help you make decisions about the coach. I think that is for us to decide and seeing how we play on the ice helps make that decision. I try to keep the players out of it, most of the things we talk to the players about is their own performance and getting better and getting us better on the ice."
  • What are you looking for in the team, "I think that if you look at the NHL today it's a very fast game, we want a fast, exciting, skilled team that competes hard every night. That hasn't really changed, that is how we had success and made it to the final and how we have had success the past 10 years and it's what we want to get back to and go another level from that."
  • Will you look at someone non-traditional, "We will look at everything, non-traditional, lately in the league, a few guys have had a lot of success in their second go-round so we are looking at those kinds of guys, people that have had success in other leagues. We will look at anything that might work for us and get us to where we want to go as far as speed and character and getting back to that."
  • On trying to rebuild in NY, "it's an original six franchise in a very large market with a lot of fans that are opinionated and love the Rangers and want to win too. It's difficult in one regard because it's not something we have done a lot with the Rangers but it's also a decision that our fans have been really supportive. They like the idea of being so transparent and telling them what we were going to do to rebuild this. They were in this we are behind you now show us what you are going to do state and we are comfortable with that."
  • How long do you expect the rebuild to take, "We can't write a letter every six months. It has been well received because we are being honest and open about it and not trying to get into the playoffs and get through around. It's been good. As far as the rebuild and how long it takes, I don't know. If you look around the league there are some teams that have done it quicker than others and than others have taken longer. Sometimes you need a little luck along the way and maybe to hit on a player in a place where you didn't think you would hit on him, we are hoping for that but the other thing is that we have three first-round picks, some seconds and some thirds for the first time in a while and that gives us a lot of picks and areas to help improve our team in a short amount of time. We are hopeful that this draft can be part of the rebuild real quick."
  • Are there franchise players in the draft, "As always there are a few right at the top that are really good and give you that chance and a lottery that gives you a little hope of that. We feel that this is a draft with 10 or 11 really good players at the top and it's a deep first round and hopefully those other two picks give us a chance at a couple of good players also. Our scouts are pretty happy with having three picks and the opportunity, we think the draft is pretty deep so it's exciting."
  • On Henrik Lundqvist fitting in, "he fits right in the middle of it. He has stated and we have stated that he wants to be a Ranger and we want him to continue to be a Ranger. He is our best player, our franchise player and we think that as it stands he belongs here and our rebuild could be centered around him. We don't think he is done by any means, he showed that in stretches this year how good he can still be. Hopefully we will have a team surrounding him that can cut down on some scoring chances. He will be here and is part of it and we are happy to have him."
  • Does the rebuild coincide with him playing at a high level, "you hear that a lot, father time and all that but being from Boston and having the QB that is still playing, we'd like to think our guy is going to play for a while too."
  • Hank will go on the TB12 method, "he's got his own method and whatever he is doing is working and we will keep him on it."
  • How much of the workload should he be carrying, "I think he likes to play as many as he can get, that is a coaching decision generally but we like him around, 55-60 games. That is probably ideal for us and I think we can do that. We have some young goalies that have shown really well and we had a young player this year, Georgiev, who showed really well when called upon. If we get him the right back up, the right mix for him, I think we can help get the most out of him."
  • How active will you be in free agency, "we will see what happens. When you say rebuild you are usually talking about a young team and letting players play and giving them chances. We will have a lot of that but it's difficult to have twenty 18, 19, 20 year old players also. We will look at everything, the market and see what players are available and term and money and some character and leadership type players that might help us develop these young guys."
  • What about free agents who are in their prime, "We have a number of young players that we think are close or half a year or a year away. We will see in September where we are with that. As we look at the market we have to look at those type of players and see if they can help us turn it around quicker."
  • Are you getting a lot of calls on the draft picks, "well my phone is ringing up a little more from the coaches. When we left the GM meetings a lot of people mentioned they might be interested in those picks. It's a good time for a Rangers fan. There are a lot of things we have to do here but it's exciting as we build forward and find a new coach there is a lot of good things happening here."
  • How did you know the team needed a new voice, "when I say I don't talk to the players, I mean that I don't talk to them about the coach. We talk to them about other things. I would say that watching every game, watching every practice, we are around the players, on and off the ice, watching interactions, being around meetings and different scenarios where you see things happening. Seeing players mannerisms, there were a lot of indicators that kind of tell you. When you lose as many games as we did and you don't play well you start looking for things. AV did a great job here but sometimes in sports it's time for a change and I just think that this is the time."
  • Would you consider someone without a track record, "it depends on what you mean by no track record. I don't think someone with zero head coaching experience anywhere in their history is going to be on our radar but we are going to look in a lot of different places and try to find that person. We will see what is out there."
  • Are you looking for the opposite of AV, "yes and no. We had Torts and he was a different type of personality than AV, AV was a little different and when he came in it worked. That is part of it. As we are looking at candidates we will look for the perfect fit right now. It's tough, we have a young team, there is a bit of teaching and growing to do as a group. Finding that right person, there are a lot of elements we are looking for."
  • Would you consider bringing back a former coach, "yea, I wouldn't touch that one. It's worth asking but I'm not willing to pay the fine."
  • Have you told the equipment guys to hold 91 for a player you might sign, "I'll stay with the no comment on that and let it play out."
  • Is Mark Messier a candidate, "Mark has done a lot of good things in hockey for the Rangers and all that, a real qualified hockey person, but I would say as the head hockey coach of this team, we are going to look in another direction."
  • How many candidates do you expect to interview, "I think we will talk to a lot, probably more than 10 people to get a feel for what is out there but to interview and dial in, the number is probably between 5 and 10."

Jeff Gorton spoke with John Giannone and said (MSG):

  • On why the decision was made, "We went through a process the last several weeks to decide what we were going to do at the coaching level and talked a lot about AV and what he has done here and just in the last week we made the hard decision that it was time for someone new and a new approach. It's a tough decision and someone who has done a real good job for us and wish him nothing but the best and thank him for the job he has done here." 
  • What is the identity you are looking for, "as we go through our interview process we want to hear from everyone and their ideas. With the Rangers we like to play fast and a skilled game and anyone we talk to has to understand that is how the league is and that is how we want to play. Having an identity comes in with the coaches approach and mixing with the organization. It's showing up, playing hard, a skilled fast game and competing for each other and trying to win every game, that is what we want to do."
  • Is there a timeline, "no. This process will probably take a few weeks and we will go through it but as far as a timeline, we don't have one. I would hate to give a date and then not come through. I've had that happen before, we will go day by day and find the best person."
  • Will the head coach be younger, "I don't think that is accurate, we need to find the best person and someone who can gives us that fresh perspective and get to our identity. As far as age, there is not really a requirement, we just want the best person to come in and get us going."
  • How will you hire and a coach and build a team, "I don't expect it to be too difficult. New York Rangers, original six team, a great city. We have a lot of first round picks, a couple last year and it's an exciting time. Based on the phone ringing and the names coming in, it will be a well sought after job. We will pick the right person but it will be a good person who comes in at the right time and helps us move forward."
  • On the young players, "they both showed flashes of being NHL players but we are cautious, they are 18 and 19 years old respectively. We will let it play out. We have seen enough good things but we will let the summer sort things out and what they do in the summer will have a big impact on what they do in September."
  • How will the team look, "I think we will have a young look. We will look at everything and there will be rumors and names like there always is as you head to the draft and free agency. We won't close our mind to anything but we will have a younger team that will be exciting."

 (Adam Hunger)
(Adam Hunger)

The Hockey News has released their annual pool guide and with it a list of the Rangers top 10 prospects.

  1. Lias Andersson
  2. Filip Chytil
  3. Vitali Kravtsov
  4. Igor Shesterkin
Tags: Prospect Rankings
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Rangers first round pick Vitali Kravtsov scored a first period goal for Traktor in a KHL preseason game on Tuesday.

Watch below.

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Brady Skjei and Vinni Lettieri each scored on Monday in their Minnesota summer league games

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Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers left wing Chris Kreider (20) skates against the Buffalo Sabres during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers left wing Chris Kreider (20) skates against the Buffalo Sabres during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

David Quinn said that talk about who will be the next Rangers captain is "on the back-burner" and he wants to wait until the team is assembled. (MSG)

Quinn said that "you can't force" something like picking a captain and that he believes in "letting the team decide if it should have one." (MSG)

The Rangers have not had a captain since trading Ryan McDonagh last year at the trade deadline.

At the end of last season the Rangers had Marc Staal, Mats Zuccarello keep their "A"s and rotated the third one between Chris Kreider, Jesper Fast, and Mika Zibanejad.

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 (David Banks)
(David Banks)

The Athletic's Scott Wheeler put together his list of the Top 50 drafted prospects in the NHL.

The only Ranger to make the list was Filip Chytil at 23. (The Athletic)

On Chytil, Wheeler writes that Chytil projects more as a second line center than a first line center but that he is someone that "loves" to have the puck on his stick and, despite his size, has a "fluid, light stride" and more agility than "you'd expect." (The Athletic)

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Mats Zuccarello scored three goals in the charity game that he and Henrik Lundqvist put together in Norway.

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Mar 12, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) celebrates his goal against the Carolina Hurricanes with teammates during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Mar 12, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers right wing Mats Zuccarello (36) celebrates his goal against the Carolina Hurricanes with teammates during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Henrik Lundqvist said that he hopes Mats Zuccarello is part of the Rangers plans moving forward.(VG)

Lundqvist said that Zuccarello adds a lot to the team on and off the ice and sets an example with his work ethic. (VG)

Zuccarello is entering the final-year of a four-year deal that has a cap hit of $4.5 million.

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Mats Zuccarello's skates for tomorrow's Summer Classic Outdoor Game in Norway feature cartoon versions of Zuccarello and Henrik Lundqvist.

Tags: Henrik Lundqvist, Mats Zuccarello
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Oct 7, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers left wing Chris Kreider (20) shoots the puck against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports (Tom Szczerbowski)
Oct 7, 2017; Toronto, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers left wing Chris Kreider (20) shoots the puck against the Toronto Maple Leafs at Air Canada Centre. Mandatory Credit: Tom Szczerbowski-USA TODAY Sports (Tom Szczerbowski)

Chris Kreider said that he is feeling "really good" this summer and is continuing to stay at a lower weight like he did when he returned last season. (Salem News)

Kreider said that he played at around 230 pounds prior to his injury last season and that now he is under 220 but still feels "really strong." (Salem News)

He noted that the lighter weight could help him be more mobile and "quicker to an extent." (Salem News)

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Feb 17, 2018; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save against Ottawa Senators during the first period at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports (Jean-Yves Ahern)
Feb 17, 2018; Ottawa, Ontario, CAN; New York Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save against Ottawa Senators during the first period at Canadian Tire Centre. Mandatory Credit: Jean-Yves Ahern-USA TODAY Sports (Jean-Yves Ahern)

Henrik Lundqvist and Mats Zuccarello are putting on an outdoor charity game in Oslo. Norway this season.

In addition to Zuccarello and Lundqvist, some of the other NHLers expected to play include Filip Forsberg, Roman Josi, Mattias Ekholm, Derick Brassard, Carl Hagelin, Antti Raanta, Oliver Ekman-Larsson, Victor Hedman, Ryan McDonagh,William Nylander, Zdeno Chara, Artem Anisimov.

To see the full list, click HERE.

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New York Rangers Wayne Gretzky reacts after scoring his third goal for a hat trick during the third period against the Philadelphia Flyers Sunday, May 18, 1997. The Rangers won 5-4 and tied the series 1-1.(AP Photo/Joe Hampshire) (AP)
New York Rangers Wayne Gretzky reacts after scoring his third goal for a hat trick during the third period against the Philadelphia Flyers Sunday, May 18, 1997. The Rangers won 5-4 and tied the series 1-1.(AP Photo/Joe Hampshire) (AP)

Today is the 30th Anniversary of Wayne Gretzky's trade from the Edmonton Oilers to the Los Angeles Kings.

Gretzky was traded to LA for a package that included Jimmy Carson, Martin Gelinas, three future first-round (traded to NJ for Corey Foster, Marty Rucinsky, Nick Stajduhar) draft picks and $15 million.

Reports from the New York Times in 1988 indicate that Rangers GM Phil Espositio was approached by Edmonton GM Glen Sather about Gretzky at the draft that June.

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Vinni Lettieri scored off the rush tonight in his game in Minnesota summer league Da Beauty League.

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 (Danny Wild)
(Danny Wild)

Craig Custance took a look at the Capitals, how their roster fit into five categories and then compared that to the rest of the teams in the Metro. (The Athletic)

The criteria he looked at included "great centers," "a game breaker," "offensive defenseman," "playoff experience" and "size." (The Athletic)

Custance notes that the Rangers have had "good" but not "great" centers lately and that the hope is that they will be able to find a "great" center during their rebuild." (The Athletic)

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Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; A general view of Madison Square Garden before a game between the Buffalo Sabres and New York Rangers. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; A general view of Madison Square Garden before a game between the Buffalo Sabres and New York Rangers. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

New Rangers assistant coach David Oliver was a 7th round pick of the Edmonton OIlers in 1991 and after playing four years at the University of Michigan, he played half a season for the Oilers in 1994-95.

Oliver then spent the next season and part of another with the Oilers before joining the Rangers for 14 regular season and 3 playoff games at the end of the 1996-97 season.

Edmonton's GM throughout Oliver's entire time in the Oilers organization was current Rangers President Glen Sather.

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Feb 18, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save against the Philadelphia Flyers during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Feb 18, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save against the Philadelphia Flyers during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Henrik Lundqvist is on the ice practicing ahead of this weekend's outdoor charity game in Norway with Mats Zuccarello.

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 (Kim Klement)
(Kim Klement)

Bruins defenseman Charlie McAvoy, who played at BU under David Quinn for two seasons, said that he couldn't be happier that Quinn is now the head coach of the Rangers. (The Athletic)

McAvoy praised Quinn for "the way that he cares" and said that Quinn was around to help him with extra video, one on one meetings and how his game was going.(The Athletic)

He added that Quinn "did so much" for me." (The Athletic)

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Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers left wing Chris Kreider (20) skates against the Buffalo Sabres during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers left wing Chris Kreider (20) skates against the Buffalo Sabres during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

8/1/18| Jeff Gorton said that Chris Kreider is not a "young player anymore" and that right now he is in his "prime years." (MSG)

Gorton said that because of Kreider's experience and stature with the team he will be a good player for the young Rangers to "lean on" and added that he feels Kreider is "ready for that role." (MSG)

Kreider, 27, has played in 381 regular season games and 77 playoff games in his NHL career.

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Sep 18, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Lias Anderson (50) during warm up before game against New York Islanders at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)
Sep 18, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Lias Anderson (50) during warm up before game against New York Islanders at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Noah K. Murray-USA TODAY Sports (Noah K. Murray)

Jeff Gorton said recently that while the Rangers want their "young kids" to make the team and "do well" they aren't going to be putting any of them in a "tough spot."

Gorton said, "if they are not ready we aren't going to put them in, won't force them in there. We will take our time and it's the right thing to do for the players, for the team, for us."

When he was asked at development camp which players he thinks could make the team, he pointed to Filip Chytil and Lias Andersson as well as European free agents Michael Lindqvist and Ville Meskanen.

Gorton added that the Rangers won't stop anyone from making the team if they are "good enough."

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Sep 19, 2017; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Libor Hajek (43) pressures Carolina Hurricanes forward Warren Foegele (37) during the third period of a hockey game at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports (Reinhold Matay)
Sep 19, 2017; Tampa, FL, USA; Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Libor Hajek (43) pressures Carolina Hurricanes forward Warren Foegele (37) during the third period of a hockey game at Amalie Arena. Mandatory Credit: Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports (Reinhold Matay)

Libor Hajek's coach in the WHL, John Paddock, said that he is close to being NHL ready, could compete for a roster spot next season and also has the ability to be a "top-four defenseman in the league for a long-time." (Newsday & NY Post)

Paddock describes Hajek, a left hand shot, as "low maintenance" and is a "real good, solid, all-around player who does a lot of things well." (NYRangers.com)

He added that Hajek was like a "sponge' and always doing extra work and talking to coaches about how to become a better player. (NYRangers.com)

Tags: Libor Hajek
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New York Rangers defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena. (Aaron Doster/USA TODAY Sports)
New York Rangers defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nationwide Arena. (Aaron Doster/USA TODAY Sports)

Kevin Shattenkirk said that he is "very" excited to play under David Quinn again and said that Quinn "is someone who really fits the bill perfectly for us in what we need to do moving forward."

Shattenkirk said that Quinn had a "huge impact" on his career and helped develop him not just in their three-years together at BU but also at the start of Shattenkirk's pro career in Lake Erie.

He said that Quinn took him as a raw player in college and helped develop him to succeed at the next level. (NYR)

Tags: Kevin Shattenkirk
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 (SNY)
(SNY)

According to reports out of Russia, the Rangers are interested and possibly willing to offer a contract to Russian winger Sergei Shumakov.

Shumakov, 25, is reportedly holding out from CSKA Moscow due to promises that were not kept and that he has offers from other teams. (Championat)

He is supposed to be heading into the second-year of a three-year deal with CSKA and he had 40 points in 47 games last season.

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Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad (93) smiles during the third period against the Buffalo Sabres at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad (93) smiles during the third period against the Buffalo Sabres at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

Mika Zibanejad was Jeff Gorton's answer when he was asked which player needs to take a step offensively this season. (NHL Network)

Gorton said, "Mika has to go to another level offensively for us to compete for a playoff spot." (NHL Network)

Gorton added, "I think he has all the tools, at times he shown he can be a number one center, he can play against some of the better players in the league, defend and offensively push and PP is a threat, he is one guy that really jumps out to me that if he has a big year we should be competing for a playoff spot." (NHL Network)

Tags: Mika Zibanejad
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 (USA Today Sports)
(USA Today Sports)

Over the weekend the Rangers signed 24-year old defenseman Brady Skjei to a six-year deal worth $5.25 million per season.

On Monday the Rangers signed 26-year old Kevin Hayes to a one-year deal worth $5.125 million.

On Tuesday, the Rangers came to terms with Ryan Spooner, 26, on a two-year deal that has a cap hit of $4 million per season.

Tags: Brady Skjei, Kevin Hayes, Ryan Spooner
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Feb 25, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Ryan Spooner (23) during the third period against the Detroit Red Wings at Madison Square Garden. This was Spooner's first game with the Rangers after being acquired from the Boston Bruins. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Feb 25, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Ryan Spooner (23) during the third period against the Detroit Red Wings at Madison Square Garden. This was Spooner's first game with the Rangers after being acquired from the Boston Bruins. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

The Rangers have announced that Ryan Spooner has come to terms on a two-year deal.

The deal is worth $4 million per season. (Elliotte Friedman)

Spooner and the Rangers were scheduled to have an arbitration hearing on Saturday.

Tags: Ryan Spooner
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Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; A general view of Madison Square Garden before a game between the Buffalo Sabres and New York Rangers. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; A general view of Madison Square Garden before a game between the Buffalo Sabres and New York Rangers. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

With the signing of Kevin Hayes on Monday, the Rangers only have one arbitration case, Ryan Spooner on 8/4, remaining.

According to Cap Friendly, the Rangers have $9.67 in cap space right now but that includes Matt Beleskey, Cody McLeod and Peter Holland up front and Brendan Smith, Rob O'Gara and Steven Kampfer on defense.

On a roster that has all of the above players in Hartford but adds Filip Chytil, Lias Andersson and Neal Pionk, the Rangers have just over $12 million in cap space.

The Rangers currently have 45 contracts signed on their 50 contract list and 69 out of 90 spots taken on their reserve list.

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Mar 31, 2018; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers forward Kevin Hayes (13) skates with the puck against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Rangers defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 2-1. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Mar 31, 2018; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers forward Kevin Hayes (13) skates with the puck against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Rangers defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 2-1. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

5:42PM: Hayes' contract is worth $5.125 million, a number that Larry Brooks calls "surprisingly high."

5:39PM: Kevin Hayes will avoid arbitration with the Rangers and sign a one-year deal worth just over $5 million. (Elliotte Friedman)

Hayes will be a UFA after next season.

Reports circulated over the weekend that Hayes and the Rangers were running into issues on a long-term deal and that a one-year deal was the most likely solution.

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Mar 31, 2018; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) celebrates with forward Mika Zibanejad (93) after there win against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Rangers defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 2-1. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Mar 31, 2018; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) celebrates with forward Mika Zibanejad (93) after there win against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The New York Rangers defeated the Carolina Hurricanes 2-1. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

Following the last game of the Rangers season, Henrik Lundqvist spoke about how the last few months of the season were about "learning and new experiences" but that next season is about "winning games and getting back into the playoffs." (NYR)

Lundqvist said that the Rangers need to set a goal right away that if you are on the team you are there to make a difference. (NYR)

He said that he thinks the Rangers can turn things around quickly with the experience that some of the young players got as well as with other moves the team can make. (NYR)

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Mar 31, 2018; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers forward Chris Kreider (20) celebrates forward Kevin Hayes (13) after his second period goal against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)
Mar 31, 2018; Raleigh, NC, USA; New York Rangers forward Chris Kreider (20) celebrates forward Kevin Hayes (13) after his second period goal against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports (James Guillory)

7/29/18 | Rick Carpiniello, of The Athletic, confirms that there is a "significant gap in contract talks and that if Hayes signs a one-year deal it's likely he will be traded before being a UFA next summer.

7/28/19 | According to Larry Brooks, Kevin Hayes is likely to sign a one-year deal with the Rangers that would allow him to be a UFA next summer. (NY Post)

He writes that there has been "little traction" in talks for a long-term deal and that Hayes is believed to be seeking a deal between $5.5 million and $6 million for five or six-years. (NY Post)

Tags: Kevin Hayes
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Mar 12, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Vladislav Namestnikov (90) reacts after scoring a goal against the Carolina Hurricanes during the second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Mar 12, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Vladislav Namestnikov (90) reacts after scoring a goal against the Carolina Hurricanes during the second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

7/29/18 | Namesnikov said that he has not yet spoken with David Quinn and doesn't know if the plan is for him to start the season at center or at wing. (NHL.com)

He said that he has to earn his ice time and that he is looking forward to the "fresh start." (NHL.com)

Namestnikov said that he thinks he has had a "long, productive summer," skating in suburban Detroit, and just needs to "keep it up." (NHL.com)

Tags: Vladislav Namestnikov
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New York Rangers defenseman Brady Skjei is congratulated after scoring a goal against the Montreal Canadiens during the first period at Madison Square Garden. (Andy Marlin/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Rangers defenseman Brady Skjei is congratulated after scoring a goal against the Montreal Canadiens during the first period at Madison Square Garden. (Andy Marlin/USA Today Sports Images)

The Rangers have announced that Brady Skjei has avoided arbitration and signed a six-year contract.

The deal is worth $5.25 million per season. (Johnston)

It was suggested earlier in the offseason that the Rangers could sign Skjei to a long-term deal in the same way that they had previously signed Marc Staal and Ryan McDonagh to long-term deals.

Skjei was slated to become a UFA in three season.

Tags: Brady Skjei
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Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad (93) celebrates his goal with left wing Chris Kreider (20) against the Buffalo Sabres during the second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Mika Zibanejad (93) celebrates his goal with left wing Chris Kreider (20) against the Buffalo Sabres during the second period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

7/27/18 | On the NHL Network on Thursday, they had the lines projected as:

  • Kreider, Zibanejad, Zuccarello
  • Namestnikov, Hayes, Buchnevich
  • Vesey, Chytil, Fast
  • Cody McLeod, Andersson, Spooner

7/21/18 | At NHL.com, Dan Rosen projects the Rangers lineup to start the season as:

  • Chris Kreider, Mika Zibanejad, Pavel Buchnevich
  • Vlad Namestnikov, Filip Chytil, Mats Zuccarello
  • Jimmy Vesey, Kevin Hayes, Jesper Fast
  • Ryan Spooner, Lias Andersson, Michael Lindqvist

He has Brady Skjei paired with Kevin Shattenkirk, Marc Staal with Neal Pionk and Brendan Smith with Fredrick Claesson. (NHL.com)

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 ( Adam Hunger)
( Adam Hunger)

7/26/18 | Dave Maloney was on the NHL Network earlier today and said that Brendan smith has reportedly lost 15 pounds this offseason while training with Ben Prentiss in Connecticut.

Maloney said that Smith is in "tremendous shape" and could be someone who provides some veteran presence and snarl for the Rangers.

7/5/18 | Rangers will give Brendan Smith an opportunity to make the team

Tags: Brendan Smith
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 (Jerome Miron)
(Jerome Miron)

USA Hockey announced today that Rangers first round pick K'Andre Miller will not take part in next weeks USA World Junior showcase due to illness.

Miller will play this season at the University of Wisconsin and could still play for Team USA at the World Juniors this winter.

The Hockey News said of Miller that the main word to describe him is "potential" and one scout said "he has a beautiful, powerful stride, and he's becoming a real stout defender. At the least, he'll be a minute-eater because he's such a great athlete. I love his floor and I love his ceiling."

Tags: K'Andre Miller
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Mar 3, 2018; Edmonton, Alberta, CAN; New York Rangers goaltender Alex Georgiev (40) makes a save on Edmonton Oilers forward Anton Slepyshev (58) during the third period at Rogers Place. Mandatory Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports (Perry Nelson)
Mar 3, 2018; Edmonton, Alberta, CAN; New York Rangers goaltender Alex Georgiev (40) makes a save on Edmonton Oilers forward Anton Slepyshev (58) during the third period at Rogers Place. Mandatory Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports (Perry Nelson)

Jeff Gorton said in June that he believes the Rangers have internal options, Alexander Georgiev and Martin Mazanec, to back up Henrik Lundqvist this coming season.

Gorton said this week that Georgiev looked "good" during his time with the Rangers this past season but that when it comes to the back up situation right now, they will "let it all play out." (MSG)

Current UFA goalies include Kari Lehtonen, Steve Mason, last year's back up Ondrej Pavelec, Anders Lindback and Jeff Glass.

Tags: Alexander Georgiev
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 (SNY)
(SNY)

David Quinn said recently that when he gathers the team together at the start of training camp one of the main things he will bring up first is "defense." (MSG)

Quinn said that playing good defense is "a want" and that "you can be a good defensive player if you determine that is what you want to be." (MSG)

He has said previously that the style he wants to play is a "pressure, puck possession game that is built around defense."

Quinn said that the Rangers need to work on getting better each day and that the focus will be on getting everyone on the same page and understanding that "the answers are within the walls of our locker room."

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Jan 20, 2018; Denver, CO, USA; New York Rangers right wing Pavel Buchnevich (89) controls the puck in the first period against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports (Isaiah J. Downing)
Jan 20, 2018; Denver, CO, USA; New York Rangers right wing Pavel Buchnevich (89) controls the puck in the first period against the Colorado Avalanche at the Pepsi Center. Mandatory Credit: Isaiah J. Downing-USA TODAY Sports (Isaiah J. Downing)

While speaking about the Rangers rebuild, GM Jeff Gorton said that he can see this as a "big year" for Pavel Buchnevich. (MSG)

Gorton said that David Quinn will bring in a new system for Buchnevich, and the team, to play, and that the Russian will have "bigger minutes. (MSG)

  • As a rookie, Buchnevich had 8 goals, 12 assists and 13:16 per game in 41 games.
  • Last season he had 14 goals and 29 assists and 15:01 per game in 74 games.

Gorton said that Buchnevich will be a "top-six forward" for a long time and should be able to build on the 43 point season he had last year. (MSG)

Tags: Pavel Buchnevich
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The New York Rangers new head coach David Quinn speaks during a news conference in New York, Thursday, May 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig) (Seth Wenig/AP)
The New York Rangers new head coach David Quinn speaks during a news conference in New York, Thursday, May 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig) (Seth Wenig/AP)

Penguins coach, and former Rangers assistant, Mike Sullivan said that the Rangers are getting a "really good coach" in David Quinn. (NHL.com)

Sullivan and Quinn were teammates at BU in the late 80s and Sullivan aid that the Rangers are getting a "real competitive guy" that will "build relationships" and get the most out of players. (NHL.com)

He added that Quinn is a "real good coach, a good teacher. I think he's going to bring that to the table at the pro level with the young Rangers team." (NHL.com)

Sullivan said that Quinn's "biggest strength" is how he builds relationships and brings a love and passion of hockey to the rink every day. (NHL.com)

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Mar 30, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Filip Chytil (72) is congratulated after scoring his first NHL goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the third period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Mar 30, 2018; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers center Filip Chytil (72) is congratulated after scoring his first NHL goal against the Tampa Bay Lightning during the third period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

While at development camp recently, Filip Chytil said that he wants to show the organization in training camp that he is ready to play in the NHL and ready to play in the Rangers top-six. (NYR)

Chytil said that he feels he can play against the best players in the NHL and said that he wants to improve in all areas of his game and "be better and be ready to play in the NHL." (NYR)

He said that he wants to spend all of next season in the NHL, felt that last year in the AHL was great and was able to receive a lot of support from everyone. (NYR)

Tags: Filip Chytil
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 (Seth Wenig)
(Seth Wenig)

Rangers coach David Quinn was a guest at Kevin Shattenkirk's wedding this week.

Quinn and Shattenkirk go back to when Shattenkirk was at BU and Quinn was an assistant coach.

Other Rangers in attendance included Kevin Hayes, Brady Skjei, Brendan Smith, Chris Kreider and Jimmy Vesey.

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 (SNY)
(SNY)

While working with the US National team in the early 2000s, David Quinn was named the 2003 USA Hockey Development Coach of the Year. (USA Hockey)

In that time he helped lead Team USA to first place finishes in three international tournaments. (USA Hockey)

While speaking with ESPN Radio after being hired, Quinn said that the key for him to get the best out of a player is to build a relationship and show that you care about them. (ESPN NY Radio)

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Mika Zibanejad, Mats Zuccarello and Henrik Lundqvist all attended Jesper Fast's wedding earlier this week.

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Nov 8, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers left wing Jimmy Vesey (26) is congratulated after scoring a goal against the Boston Bruins during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)
Nov 8, 2017; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers left wing Jimmy Vesey (26) is congratulated after scoring a goal against the Boston Bruins during the first period at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Andy Marlin-USA TODAY Sports (Andy Marlin)

Jimmy Vesey was on NHL Tonight to discuss his new contract with the Rangers and said (NHL Network):

  • On staying with the Rangers, "it's a good situation for both sides and glad it worked out. We are a new look team this year with a lot of youth and changes. Looking forward to somewhat of a fresh start and the guys in our room, everyone can be a little bit better and that will bode well for us."
  • Where do you want to get better, "consistency for me has been big, I've had good stretches and then quieter stretches as well. I've gone from a younger guy on the team to pretty much one of the older guys. I want to step up my game and be more consistent and develop into a leader for this team."
Tags: Jimmy Vesey
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 (SNY)
(SNY)

David Quinn has returned from his trip to Sweden after having met with Henrik Lundqvist, Mika Zibanejad and Jesper Fast. (NY Post)

  • Quinn said that if he was "better at geography" he would have visited Mats Zuccarello but he didn't realize that Norway was just a "hop away." (NY Post)

Quinn said that he has spoken with about 10 players so far and that the focus has been on getting to know each other, building a relationship and "getting onto the same page as far as clarifying our expectations of one another and as a team." (NY Post)

He said that he wants the players to believe that they can contend for the Stanley Cup and that if they work at that and buy in "people might be surprised at what we can accomplish collectively." (NY Post)

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New York Rangers defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk (22) celebrates his game-winning overtime goal over the Florida Panthers in an NHL hockey game, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017, in Sunrise, Fla. The Rangers won the game 5-4. (AP Photo/Joe Skipper) (Joe Skipper/AP)
New York Rangers defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk (22) celebrates his game-winning overtime goal over the Florida Panthers in an NHL hockey game, Saturday, Nov. 4, 2017, in Sunrise, Fla. The Rangers won the game 5-4. (AP Photo/Joe Skipper) (Joe Skipper/AP)

Kevin Shattenkirk said that this season for the Rangers needs to be about establishing a "culture of winning" and that the focus isn't just to improve a little but to make the playoffs. (NHL.com)

Shattenkirk added, "when you drive that home into players especially early in their career, you don't accept anything less than making the playoffs and trying to make a run for the Stanley Cup." (NHL.com)

He said that when you look around the league at teams going through a rebuild it takes a year or two but that the Rangers are "fortunate" to still have some veterans as well as an "ace" in net."(NHL.com)

Shattenkirk said that it's on him and the veteran players to "bear the burden" and build that culture of winning. (NHL.com)

Tags: Kevin Shattenkirk
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The New York Rangers new head coach David Quinn speaks during a news conference in New York, Thursday, May 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig) (Seth Wenig/AP)
The New York Rangers new head coach David Quinn speaks during a news conference in New York, Thursday, May 24, 2018. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig) (Seth Wenig/AP)

David Quinn, while discussing why he hired David Oliver and Greg Brown, said that it was important for him to have assistants that he can "trust and have confidence in." (NY Post)

He noted that while he has a past with with both of them, he didn't just hire a "a couple of buddies."

Quinn said that both of them are "extremely well-respected throughout the hockey world" and will be "major factors in helping us become the team we want to be and can be." (NY Post)

Quinn noted that while both lack NHL experience, Lindy Ruff is still around and his experience is "one of the assets he brings to our group." (NY Post)

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The Rangers have announced that Jimmy Vesey has avoided arbitration and signed a two-year deal.

Larry Brooks tweets that the cap hit for the deal is $2.275 million.

Vesey, 25, played in 79 games for the Rangers last season, scoring 17 goals and 11 assists.

From the Rangers release:

  • He established career-highs in several categories in 2017-18, including goals and points, and he tied his career-high in assists.
  • Vesey tied for the team lead in game-winning goals (four) and game-deciding goals (one), ranked third in even strength goals (16), ranked fifth in goals and takeaways (46), and tied for sixth in hits (83).
  • The Rangers posted a 15-4-3 record in games which he registered a point, including a 10-2-1 record in games which he tallied a goal.
  • Vesey recorded nine points (five goals, four assists) in the final 13 games of the season, including six points (two goals, four assists) in the final eight contests.
Tags: Jimmy Vesey
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Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; A general view of Madison Square Garden before a game between the Buffalo Sabres and New York Rangers. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)
Mar 24, 2018; New York, NY, USA; A general view of Madison Square Garden before a game between the Buffalo Sabres and New York Rangers. Mandatory Credit: Danny Wild-USA TODAY Sports (Danny Wild)

9:51PM: Larry Brooks notes that right now the plan is for Oliver and Ruff to be with Quinn on the bench while Brown will be upstairs. (NY Post)

Brown and Ruff will work with the Rangers defensemen, Ruff will handle the Rangers PK and while Brown and Oliver will share duties on the PP. (NY Post)

11:50AM: The Rangers announced that David Oliver and Greg Brown have joined David Quinn's staff as assistant coaches.

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