2009-10 NHL preview: New York Rangers
John Tortorella took over as Head Coach of the New York Rangers last season from Tom Renney and immediately began to question his offensively challenged clubs physical fitness, and their ability to play nasty Eastern Conference style hockey. This off season Ranger General Manager Glen Satehr must have been listening no less than 10 2008-09 Rangers have been shown the door, and no less than nine new players come to the team for the next campaign.
Now it is on fiery coach Tortorella to make all this work. Last season he was able to push enough of his player’s buttons to get his team into the playoffs. One there they fell just short of a first round upset over the Washington Capitals and this year the Rangers will settle for nothing less than a playoff series victory.
Of course Tortorella will have the unenviable job of dealing with one Sean Avery. The two have had a difficult relationship as Tortorella had to bench the forward due to inconsistent play. If Avery can keep his act, and more importantly his mouth under control he could be a very effective second line winger in Tortorella’s system. Of course he has injured his knee during the pre-season and may not be available in the early part of the new season.
Since the Rangers made so many moves we really have no idea just how good, or bad they will be heading into the 2009-10 NHL campaign. For now here is a look at the extensive moves they made during the off season:
Additions- C Tyler Arnason, C Brian Boyle, LW Donald Brashear, RW Marian Gaborik, RW Christopher Higgins, RW Ales Kotalik, RW Enver Lisin, C Vinny Prospal, and D Nigel Williams
Subtractions- RW Nik Antropov, C Scott Gomez, D Doug Janik, LW Lauri Korpikoski, D Paul Mara, RW Greg Moore, D Derek Morris, LW Markus Naslund, LW Cotton Orr, RW Fredrik Ajostrom, and RW Mikolai Zherdev