The New York Rangers were eliminated by the New Jersey Devils in last seasons Eastern Conference Finals. They lost in six games and the sting has been there ever since. The Rangers had to wait extra long as the lockout dragged on and was finally just settled last week. Training camp began yesterday and the first game will be Saturday night in Boston. There won’t be any preseason games and 48 games will be played in a pretty short amount of time. The Rangers will open up with a pretty tough schedule. They have the Bruins on Saturday, then come home Sunday for the Penguins then play the Bruins again at home. They then have the Flyers and Pittsburgh, it won’t be easy but it is important especially this season to get off to a good start.
I think the Rangers have one advantage in that they have the same core of guys. They have a few new guys including superstar Rick Nash. Nash seems to be comfortable though and has been living in New York for a few months, he says he really likes the city and today he had a nice quote about pressure. It looks like he is embracing it and looking forward to it and shouldn’t have any problems. The Rangers really do have a stacked team starting with the best goalie around in Henrik Lundqvist. They now have scorers on multiple lines, it looks like Brad Richards and Nash will work on the same line which is a nice combination. Marion Gaborik will be on another line and he is one of the best scorers. They have nice depth and good defense. It isn’t easy to win games and get far but the Rangers have a legitimate shot to win the Stanley Cup. I know one thing for sure they won’t be outworked. They are determined and they have a good coach who is going to push them, they get along very well and are excited to be playing again. I really think they will at least make the finals this year and may be raising the cup come April. If the Rangers are able to win it, it will be the first time since 1994. It looks like they are favorites to a lot of people also though which makes it tough but I think they realize what is in front of them and they are prepared for it.