The Rangers have not even showed up for training camp and someone has already started with the "Rangers will underachieve in 2009". And of course the ones who always seem to lead the "Let us trash the Rangers" are the folks from the Hockey News.
Today's cheapshot comes courtesy of some "writer" (note the term writer is used with sarcasm) by the name of Rory Boylen. The Rangers have made Boylen's list of three teams that he believes will underachieve but when you take his stuff apart you can see holes a mile wide.
This is every so typical of the nonsense that comes from the "bible" of hockey as we have to take it point by point:
I didn’t like much of what the Rangers did this off-season and I couldn’t figure out why a team that was so close to being a legitimate conference champion contender would re-shape its image.
"It goes back to that old, simple saying; “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.”
Legitimate Conference Champion Contender? Not Broke? Dude what in the word did you smoke before sitting down to write this stuff? In the 1970's we called it "tripping on acid" and this was a trip on the Starship Enterprise to another part of the galaxy.
The Rangers were just as close to not making the playoffs last season as they were division champions. This was a team that lacked consistency all season long, had a power play that a pee wee team could defend against, was totally suspect on defense and hardly every gave us a full 60 minutes of effort
Maybe our friend here mistook the New York Rangers for the Kitchener Rangers (OHL Champions) as we saw 82 games last season and we kept waiting for the Rangers to get their act together.
Jaromir Jagr and Martin Straka went back to Europe,
Jagr wanted a 3 year contract and in all honesty writers like yourself would have trashed Sather had he gave in to what Jagr wanted. Straka wanted to go home and in all honesty could hardly stay healthy to be consistently productive.
Brendan Shanahan still hasn’t been invited back,
Shanny hurt the team by playing hurt last season when he should have sat out. His game went into a deep decline over the last couple of months as he was slow and ineffective more times than he was helpful.
Oh and wait did we also mention that Shanny is almost as old as the Caveman from those Geico commericals?
Nikolai Zherdev – host of a notoriously bad attitude and work ethic – was added for a steep price that included under-appreciated defender Fedor Tyutin
A steep price? Fedor Tyutin and Christian Backman is a steep price? It took us close to 5 minutes to stop laughing when we saw that part. Yes Zherdev has some questions about his work ethic but as we said here a while back; part of the blame rightfully belongs to the Bluejackets who never gave him a chance to properly develop as a player OR as a person.
You know if we knew which team Boylen rooted for then we would have gladly paid them to take Sister Christian from the Rangers.
and finally Sean Avery, love him or hate him, was lost for nothing to free agency.
Excuse me could you tell us what kind of trade value that Avery had? What could the Rangers have gotten for Avery and when were the Rangers supposed to have traded the same player that who knows how many times got trashed by the Canadian hockey media?
It’s time for Scott Gomez and Chris Drury to call this team their own, which is all well and good for them, but the team simply doesn’t have the same make-up for success it did last season. It seems to me the Rangers have a few more ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ that could have their fans choking on candy and nuts by Christmas.
This is more than Gomez and Drury, it is Staal, Dawes, Callahan, Girardi, Dubinsky, Prucha, Orr, Betts, Mara and some kids who are almost ready to make the jump in Anisimov, Korpikoski and maybe Byers. There is more to the Rangers than adding Naslund, Zherdev and Redden.
Still, in goalie Henrik Lundqvist, the Rangers have one of the best back-stoppers in the game, so he should be able to lead them back to the second season, though New York will find themselves having to win big games in April to make it that far.
Well gee thanks for giving Henrik that vote of confidence pal as we really do not know where we would be without it.
Here is what we would really like to know is a definition of underachieving for the 2008-09 Rangers from this writer? Maybe we missed it but we did not see what kind of season it would take to be a team that underachieves from him.
We will be the first to say that the moves that the Rangers are gambles, that they have just as good a chance of failing as they do working. However at the same time when we look at not only the Atlantic Divsion but the entire Eastern Conference and we do not see any team that greatly improved themselves to the point where we should fear them.
What we dislike is writers who clearly have no idea about a team pulling a stunt like this. The one thing that we keep thinking as this was written for no other reason but for attention or "shock value".
Well congrats Rory you got our attention and just as quickly we will dismiss you as an kind of serious hockey writer.
And for some really dumb idea we plan on waiting until the Rangers actually play some meaningful games before trying to pass any kind of judgment on them.