The Rangers are being coached, and have been for some time, as if each recreation have been a playoff recreation.
After an atrocious begin to the season, it’s arduous to dispute the need of that mentality as purveyed by Alain Vigneault. However it’s equally as onerous to assume that such urgency is sustainable, being that it’s additionally antithetical to the best way Vigneault says he needs to handle his roster.
That begins with Vigneault saying he needs to roll 4 strains, although that sentiment hasn’t been executed. As a result of why then was Rick Nash sitting for the ultimate 9:12 of regulation on Tuesday night time towards the Penguins?
Say what you’ll about Nash’s offensive manufacturing — though saying he isn’t due for an offensive outburst can be shortsighted — however he’s undoubtedly one of many Rangers’ greatest defensive forwards. And there he was on the bench, subsequent to linemates Kevin Hayes and Jimmy Vesey, because the fourth line of Boo Nieves, Paul Carey and Jesper Quick obtained common shifts whereas efficiently defending a one-aim lead that was a four-three victory over the 2-time defending Stanley Cup champions.
So it’s excellent news for the Rangers they’ve a productive and reliable fourth line, particularly as they put together for Friday night time’s match in Washington that kicks off a stretch of six video games in 9 nights that may necessitate depth, from prime to backside.
“They have been enjoying nicely. They have been enjoying higher than a number of the different guys,” Vigneault stated of the fourth line. “Whenever you get right down to the final seven or eight minutes, I shorten up the bench somewhat bit. I went right down to 9 forwards they usually have been in it, as a result of that line had been actual efficient at each ends of the rink.”
It’s true that the road centered by Nieves, a rookie, was efficient, and simpler than Nash’s line — which, in itself, is an issue. However contributions from up and down the lineup are what’s wanted, and with Nieves getting his first NHL objective on Tuesday, it could possibly be a lift to a unit that may carry greater than an arbitrary position going ahead.
“I feel the 2 issues that we do rather well is we play quick, and I feel velocity kills on this league. And I feel the opposite factor is our simplicity,” Nieves stated. “Enjoying with Carey and Quick, we don’t attempt something too loopy. We hold pucks alongside the boards and we make the sensible play that’s in entrance of us. And I feel that’s beginning to repay.”
The win-at-all-prices mentality from behind the bench has paid off, getting…