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NHL: San Jose Sharks at New York Rangers

Blueshirts fans, welcome to Rangers-411! I’m so excited to bring this new blog to you all and share my perspective on our beloved Rangers. I alluded to it in my “About” section, but after reading such crappy blogs and listening to snooze fest podcasts put out by “professionals,” I knew it was time for me to give you all a Rangers blog that’s actually worth reading! Content here will be largely original. Yeah, we’ll cover recent game results and the latest stories. People want and need the news. But, it won’t be the same regurgitation of AP and New York media stories like all the other blogs. You’ll actually read some original thoughts and opinions here. And most importantly, I want to hear from you every step of the way. Comment, reach out, tell me I suck, tell me you love me. Good or bad, I want to hear it!

I’m excited to launch this blog at such an action-packed part of the season! We’re a week from the trade deadline, Henrik has regained his throne and found his form between the pipes, and the Boys in Blue find themselves comfortably in a playoff position as the first Wild Card team out of the Metropolitan Division. As the snow melts and the games start to mean more and more, I can’t help but be enthused about the potential of this team. Yes, the defense has been a liability this year and yes, the powerplay has become mindnumbingly poor. But, I might be one of the few people that actually gets some really good vibes from this team. The D-corps is not getting the love it deserves. Ryan McDonagh is obviously the rock of the unit and has been recognized accordingly with his All-Star selection this year. He’ll continue to lead the way on the back-end. Beyond the captain, I look to the slick skating and increasingly strong two-way play by Brady Skjei, the steady 2nd-pair presence of Marc Staal, and the quiet production of Nick Holden as reasons to still believe in this unit (I intentionally left Klein and Girardi out of this because I find it really hard to be objective; I love those guys too much). The powerplay has been painful to watch for the last few weeks, but I have to think it will find its stride sooner rather than later. Kreider and Grabner have used their speed to create career years for themselves and the “Power Kill” duo of Hayes and Miller have been such forces on the PK and while playing on the same line at even strength. You have to believe the play of these guys will translate to the man advantage. And finally, Hank’s back. I don’t care about the beginning of the year or the egg he laid against Columbus after the bye week. Henrik is still the King of New York and he’s heating up at the perfect time. Are the Rangers perfect? No, they’re not on the level of the Pens or Caps. But I think they can hang with any of these teams. So before we hit the panic button and trade the house for Kevin Shattenkirk, let’s let this team show its true potential.