Tuesday, January 15, 2013

N.Y. Rangers: Farewell Old Friends and Hello Expectations


NEW YORK RANGERS - Time To Don The Blueshirts And Lace Up The Skates.  The 2012-2013 Regular Season is FINALLY Upon Us.

First things first.  To the Commissioner and the owners of the NHL - For the simple fact you instigated a lockout for the second time in a decade, you're all a bunch of puckin' idiots!
Thank you very much.
Welcome back my Blueshirts Brothers and Sisters to "Raise Gresch With The Greats" - the New York Rangers portion of my BrooklynTrolleyBlogger.  Its been a long time since last summer ended on a sad note.....  Can't wait to get started again.
Thank you Artem Anisimov and Ruslan Fedotenko.  And so long Brandon Prust.  I'm upset to lose Prust like I was upset when the Rangers let Colton Orr get away.  And sadly, bye bye Brandon Dubinsky.  He was one of Coach Torts original core players.  Without a doubt, he helped rebuild the Rangers into the contender they are today.  Inevitably, his last act as a Rangers player was smashing a water cooler on his way off the ice versus New Jersey.  In hindsight, that was a great way to go.  I'll remember him well.  But in the bigger picture, last season was the Blueshirts greatest season in some time.  And so, they will all be missed.
But nothing ventured, nothing gained.  With success come expectations.  The bar has been set.  We've been to the conference finals and lost out by a goal and a game.  Now we want to win round three, and advance to the Stanley Cup Finals.  That said, securing a second high profile player in consecutive years also brings expectations.  So hello Rick Nash.  This ain't Columbus chum.  Show me.
Rick Nash is actually the player the Rangers have been seeking on the wing for for decades, or at least since the days Nick Fotiu played.  Difference being, Nash is a legit scorer.  He is big, and tough like Fotiu was, but a vastly more skilled forward than Fotiu could ever aspire to be.  And he's young.  He is entering his prime years.  Alas, recent years of making mistakes with Scott Gomez and Chris Drury seem like ages ago - perchance to dream.
Dare we?  Dare we dream of the Finals?  Or do we follow Coach Torts' dictate, and just try to win shifts, periods, and games?  Well, as fans, WE could do all that, and chew gum too.  But what about the Media?  Problem is Staal, Callahan, Girardi, and Lundqvist are no longer considered kids anymore.  They are full fledged vets now, as are Brad Richards and Nash.  Fact is, with a conference final appearance under their belts, Coach Torts has a veteran team now.  The "We're not good enough for..." tact may no longer fly with the scribes.
One veteran the New York Rangers will have to rely heavily on this season in particular because of the condensed schedule, is back-up goalie Marty Biron.  Damn I'm glad he's back.
This was my first hockey warm-up.  I'm sore already.  But I'm glad they're all back.

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