From the desks of:
RAISE GRESCHNER WITH THE GREATS & THE BRICK CITY STYX
BATTLE OF THE HUDSON - I
New York Rangers
New Jersey Devils
It's time I welcomed myself to the 93rd season of New York Rangers hockey. It's also high time the Rangers hoist Ron Greschner's #4 to the rafters!
Thank you very much ...
Even though the front office hastened the rebuild, I enter this season with few expectations. But, boy, am I a happy camper! The triumvirate of John Davidson, Jeff Gorton, and David Quinn, along with this collection of young talent, has elevated my enthusiasm to levels not experienced since 1992 (Roger Neilson withstanding). Sure, they financially capped themselves like a jar of marmalade, but I don't care. Everyone I want in a blue shirt is present and accounted for right down to Anthony DeAngelo's last minute signing.
- I mean Mika Zibanejad no slight, but I like the idea of entering the season without a captain. The Rangers are in a good place. Let some of these players distinguish themselves first. If everyone takes the ice with the characteristics of a captain in mind then eventually one will materialize. But make no mistake, Zibanejad has a big fan in me.
- Henrik Lunqvist's playing time is a big concern. At this stage of his career perhaps less is more. Two seasons ago Henrik started 60+ games for the eighth time in his career. Last season he was limited to 52 starts. In March he turns 38-years old. Not one bit do I mind him chasing down career milestones. In fact, I'm rooting for him. But closer to the point, I just want Alexandar Georgiev receiving representative minutes in net.
- What is Chris Kreider still doing here? He is the last person I expected to survive Gorton's purge. But since he still dons a blue shirt, how about some consistent play for a change. If Kreider ever gets his head screwed on straight could be a top forward of the league ... but it isn't, and he's not.
NYR - Kaapo Kakko
(2019 #2 overall draft pick)
NJD - Jack Hughes
(2019 #1 overall draft pick)
And let us not forget Nico Hischier, the 2017 first overall pick of the 2017 draft.
Point being, the next ten years of metropolitan area hockey is shaping up to be a lot of fun. Just don't say that too loud. Newark is off to a ponderous 0-4-2 start, and giving away multiple goal leads like candy on Halloween. With the return to full duty of Taylor Hall, and the big acquisitions of P.K. Subban and Wayne Simmonds, no one anticipated such a start as this. All I'll say for now is that coach John Hynes deserves to see this through.
Raise Gresch With The Greats