New York Rangers: Why This is Not Just a Peak: Part Two

The New York Rangers have had a great start to the season, but the ultimate goal is quite a while away. Let’s check out the second reason I believe that goal is definitely in reach!

When talking about how well these New York Rangers have been doing, some names that come to mind include Henrik Lundqvist or Michael Grabner, or even JT Miller and Kevin Hayes. But what about those players that aren’t talked about, the ones that are quietly making a huge impact even though most don’t acknowledge it? They deserve to be talked about, and that’s exactly what I’m going to do. Here’s to proving that “quiet goods” are extremely important for success.

                                              Reason #2: “Quiet Goods”

– “Hold-en Them Off”  During the offseason, many of us started getting concerned, and rightfully so. Where were all the assists going to come from without Keith Yandle in the lineup? The Rangers lost one of their biggest playmakers on the power play, a power play which wasn’t even good to begin with last season (to say the least).

In addition to improving on the power play, the New York Rangers have also found a great player in Nick Holden, who as I like to say, “holds off” the opposition quite well. Holden has become the replacement for an offensive defenseman. He is one of the players that is having a “quietly good season.” He knows how to make accurate stretch passes that lead to quality chances. He currently has a respectable amount of points in these season-initiating games.

– “Fine Klein”  Kevin Klein has surely been a big part of this team’s improved defensive situation. Last season, the main problem with this team was their lack of ability to give Lundqvist a break. In other words, no one was helping their goaltender, who we all know to be great. Klein is the type of player that averages one of the highest times on the team, despite not always being in control of the puck. Here’s where he benefits the team, though. Notice how he always has good positioning to dump the puck out when it matters most. He also has a pretty big

Here’s where he benefits the team, though. Notice how he always has good positioning to dump the puck out when it matters most. He also has a big body which is to his advantage when teams try to use skill moves to get around him. Not to mention, he has a great shot when given the chance to take it. We haven’t seen much of it yet, but we all remember the game-winner in that 6-5 win against the Islanders two seasons ago, right? (Ahem- Klein’s slap shot from left circle)

– “Shy Skjei”  Yup, the title pretty much explains it. Skjei isn’t exactly one of the players that directly comes to mind when one thinks of this team, but he should be. Back when Dylan McIlrath was still with the Rangers, Skjei always won the battle for ice time. Now, he sees an even better deal of it. Of course, this is partly because he happens to be a left-handed defenseman, but he brings a lot more to the ice that just that. He seems to kind of “shy away” into the background in many

Back when Dylan McIlrath was still with the Rangers, Skjei always won the battle for ice time. Now, he sees an even better deal of it. Of course, this is partly because he happens to be a left-handed defenseman, but he brings a lot more to the ice that just that. He seems to kind of “shy away” into the background in many

He seems to kind of “shy away” into the background in many games but be assured that all 6′ 3″ and 211 lbs of him brings some concern to the opposition. He isn’t the type to get in other team’s faces, but only because he’s busy blocking shots and breaking up plays at the blueline to prevent scoring chances. Personally, I believe as Brady settles into his new (and larger) role on the team, he will find his stride. I also predict one of his goals will happen sometime soon…

– “Zeal of Zibanejad”  If you were to compare Derick Brassard‘s stats from last season to Mika Zibanejad‘s this season, there’s only one word you could use- wow! This is not because the points are so far off. Actually, it’s because Zibanejad is averaging more points per night, rather than overall.

If there’s any of you in the audience who watched at least some of the preseason (I’m guilty as charged!) then you know trading Brassard was a pretty bold move, especially since no one was expecting it. But he has done the same thing Nick Holden has done in Yandle’s place. He’s been better than perhaps some anticipated and generally fits into the team really well.

– “Big Mac”  Captain Ryan McDonagh. Is there ever enough good things to say about one of this team’s most important leaders? McDonagh has yet to score as we approach the twenty game mark. However, that’s perfectly acceptable considering his healthy amount of assists.

But why are we still talking about points? How about all the minutes he logs? .

Here’s a player that averages 24:02 of ice time nearly every night…and practically begs for more! Let’s not forget to mention his defensive capabilities, though. On a team in desperate need of defense, Ryan comes up big for his team every night, and his passion for the game is evident in the energy he brings.

– “Vigneault’s Vindication”  Coming into the 2016-2107 season, a lot of fans were disappointed in Alain Vigneault, blaming him for his team’s poor performance in the previous season. Well, if this is any indication of what’s to come for this team (and we’re all hoping it is) then he has proven his case. Some will argue that the only way he will prove his case entirely is when he wins the Stanley Cup with the New York Rangers.

This may be true, but rest assured that he and the rest of the team are trying their very hardest to make this dream finally come true.

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