This can no longer be argued: the New York Rangers are simply not good enough. And things will continue to get worse as long as this current roster hits the ice. They don’t compete, they don’t hit and they certainly don’t score. Now it appears as if they don’t care. The only way thing will turn around for this team is if a major move is made. It cannot wait any longer.
In another important game during a critical home-stand, the Rangers fell to the Nashville Predators, 4-1. Struggling captain Ryan Callahan left the game with a sprained MCL and will miss 4-6 weeks. Once again, the Rangers made a backup goaltender, Carter Hutton, look like Patrick Roy. They simply failed to challenge the Predator D and did not play physical nor smart. They made numerous defensive mistakes and took too many dumb penalties. To simplify, they stunk again.
We have seen this kind of effort in nearly every game during the home-stand. It’s obvious these players need a kick in the pants. At this point, it doesn’t matter if it is via trade, firing, call-up, anything. Something needs to happen.
Can a trade happen? Absolutely. Will it impact the team? It’s possible. If I were general manager Glen Sather, my first course of action would be to cut ties with the dead weight on this team, namely waiving Benoit Pouliot and Taylor Pyatt. I would make any and all efforts to trade one or more of the following: Brian Boyle, Michael Del Zotto, John Moore and Derick Brassard. In return, the Rangers need a scorer, a tough guy and even a power play quarterback. A trade to Buffalo for Matt Moulson and Steve Ott makes the most sense, but it may take more than those players to get it done.
It’s also time to give prospects such as Danny Kristo and Oscar Lindberg a look, especially if this team is not going to contend for a Stanley Cup. Perhaps players hungry for success and winning rubs off on the veterans.
Of course, what the fans want is for Sather to be fired, but that will never happen as long as Jim Dolan is in charge. Firing coach Alain Vigneault is foolish as well; he needs his own players in the mix before it is fair to judge him.
Whatever the move is, rational or irrational, it needs to happen this week. The Rangers’ season is spiraling out of control and only a major shakeup will give the fans hope. This roster as it stands right now will simply not get it done.