Thursday, October 28, 2010

What Goes On In Hartford/Connecticut? Do Our Prospects Advance There?

Normally at the pro levels I am first looking to the player themselves if there is a problem with their play because coaches in many instances can only do so much and it is the players job to execute whatever game plan and role set out by the coach.  That is true for me until I see a pattern develop in which many people on the same team are having similar problems and then you either wonder if the coach lost the room or if he just is not good enough to help his players get over the hump.  In my take on the Grachev move I made reference to Hartford becoming a place where prospects seem to go to stall in their development.  Frankly I think Gernander and his staff do a lousy job in developing our prospects and I think that is evidenced in the lack of advancement players under his coaching making in their games.  Very few of the guys we send there can come up and be regular contributors at the higher levels.  To me this has been true since he took over as coach in 07 and the only prospect that has really come through the Hartford system under Gernander and made it full time for the Rangers is Anisimov and Sauer is showing he is ready for a 3rd pair role.  This trend of development failures has only gotten worse in my opinion since Jim Schoenfeld left his role in Hartford altogether once Renney was fired.

My take On Grachev Development and Recall

Fourteen months ago when the Rangers were set to begin camp the hottest name among Ranger prospects for many fans was Evgeny Grachev.  The then 19 year old winger was coming off a season with the Brampton Battalion of the OHL in which he scored 40 goals and had 40 assists in 60 games.  On that team and many games on the same line he had the luxury of playing with other top prospects Matt Duchene of the Colorado Avalanche and Cody Hodgson of the Vancouver Canucks.  The talk was how he was the next great hope for a scorer for the Rangers, how he could come in the NHL right then and score 20, even 30 goals as a rookie.  Personally I never believed that to be the case if he had come in last year.  

Artem Anisimov, Michal Rozsival Updates: Potential Lines vs Carolina

As news keeps rolling in we hear that the MRI on Anisimov's Ankle turned out fine and that both he and Rozsival are expected to play tomorrow against Carolina.  Both of these developments are welcomed news to the Rangers as they get their number 1 center and top pair d-man back.  This combined with the Grachev callup does make for some interesting possibilities in the lineup tomorrow.  I could see where they let Stepan get some time playing down on the 4th line with Grachev if they really want to move White up in the lineup based on his 3rd period yesterday.

Possible Lines:

Reading the quotes from Torts on Eminger and "liking his physicality" it seems as if he will be in there with Gilroy again as Sauer gets scratched for the 3rd straight.

Grachev Called Up

Things in Ranger land just took a very interesting turn as Evgeny Grachev the prize prospect to many fans coming into last season and guy many have turned on coming into this year is being called up.  Reports are Boogaard has an infected hand and is questionable for tomorrow not that we will really notice his absence. Apparently the Boogaard infection came from a cut he got fighting Shawn Thornton over the weekend on his knuckle that didnt heal properly.

So far on the year Grachev has 1G, 1A in 9 games for Hartford.  The talent is there for Grachev, still only 20, it has been the other stuff that has been the question mark for him to this point, mainly the work ethic and then the confidence after the struggles.  Also interesting to see him called up over a RW when EG has predominantly played the left side and all our left wing guys are healthy unless they plan on playing him on the 4th line.

New York Rangers Practice Notes 10/28

With the uncertainty about Artem Anisimov after last night’s injury and today’s MRI the Rangers took to the practice ice with the fans having little idea of how they would adjust in case their best center this season was actually out for tomorrow’s game or heaven forbid longer.  There were also questions as to how serious the injury to Michal Rozsival was and while it was said to be minor, he did not practice either today.  In practice the forward lines looked like this:
Boogaard-EC as extras